More Nikon D600 rumors

Here are few more details about the rumored full frame Nikon D600 DSLR camera. As I already mentioned, any information so far in future cannot be considered as reliable:

  • The price of the D600 is rumored to be very low - maybe as low as $1500.
  • The sensor inside the D600 will probably be 24MP (made by Sony, modified by Nikon).
  • The D600 will probably not have an internal AF motor, which means it will work only with AF-S lenses (just like the D3200 and D5100).
  • The D600 will have HD video.
  • Announcement before Photokina (September 2012).
  • One or more low-priced f/4 lenses will be announced with the D600. For example, Nikon recently filed a patent for a 24-70mm f/3.5-4.5 full frame lens which seems to be designed for a cheaper FX DSLR body.

The above image was published earlier on the Chinese photography forum - it could be fake, I don't know. Update: the strap is fake, here is the original image.

For some reason Google has captured several appearances of the phrase "Nikon D600" on the main website:

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  • d3c

    It seems Nikon executive became envious of Nikon Rumors. In order to prove their superiority they floated the D800. Which rumor should we believe. The D800 or the D600. Careful analysis supports both as a bit vaporous .

    (with a smile)

    • HDR

      LOL, Admin must be exceedingly happy.

      He has been kept busy right after the vapor launches of D4, D800, D3200…

      Keep it coming, Admin!!

  • Funruro

    Well I’m happy with the rumor of a value priced D600 FX DSLR in the US$1500 range. I’m not going to whine about this or that being left out or limitations at this price point. Number one is that you either buy it or go buy another by someone else. I’ll stick with Nikon no matter what, got too much gear and affinity for the brand. I see the “new norm” is lower priced DSLR’s if the price stays at 1/2 of the D800. Overall I’m very happy to have a value priced FF along side my D300s. So this summer will hopefully be getting firmer tech specs.

    • Rob

      The only way to price a full frame camera at $1500 would be to leave out the sensor. If Sony can’t make a full frame camera with a new sensor under $2000, no one can.

      I believe this rumor is bunk, but if there was a FF Nikon under $2000, it would have to use a mature sensor, as a new FF sensor simply costs too much to price under $3k. The D3x sensor would take away from D800 sales, the D3s sensor would take away from D4 sales, and the D3 sensor is already in the $2200 D700. A good way to rate the probability of a new DSLR rumor is to figure out which sensor it would use. I don’t see any available in this situation.

      • Andrew

        Rob, what if you are wrong? Technology for developing more sophisticated gears has become so much more inexpensive in the past few years. But in cases where the technological cost is considerably higher like microprocessor research, design, and development, the massive size of the market still results in considerably lower production and product costs.

        Take the Nikon D3200 camera for example, it is using a new 24 megapixel sensor (albeit a smaller sized sensor than a full frame sensor) , the new Expeed 3 image processor, a 18-55mm VR lens, built-in flash, and more; all in a camera package selling for $699. If Nikon is sharing the D600’s full frame sensor manufacturing cost with Sony which is also shipping virtually the same sensor in their own camera products, then at a price of $1,500 for the Nikon D600, this camera could potentially achieve sales that is five to ten times that of the D800 camera. Why? Because mass market distribution has always been known to lower the overall cost of manufacturing. So it is not inconceivable that full frame cameras can sell for as little as $1,500 if the sales volume is large enough.

        But even besides sales volume, if the D600 is selling for $300 more than the D7000, while the cost of the D600 is reduced further by eliminating a built-in AF motor which comes standard on the venerable D7000, the cost difference between the two cameras and cost savings by eliminating the built-in AF motor could possibly allow the D600 to achieve the lower retail price of $1,500. If you are not convinced by my argument, then simply wait for a few more months and we will know for certain.

        • Rob

          And then you’ll admit you were wrong? I was totally wrong on the price of the D800, but as the market has shown it would have been much better to price it like I predicted (since it’s selling for that much on ebay) and lower the price after 6 months when production surpassed the initial demand.

          A full frame sensor costs around $500 more to produce than a DX sensor. The only major advances in sensor production come in how many MP they put on the wafer, not the cost or the initial yields. R&D on a new sensor and setting up a fab costs a lot. Unlike the D7000, there’s no high-volume, cheaper body to allow for greater sensor production and better economies of scale for it. And even IF there was and you used the D7000 as a basis for comparison, there’s just not enough places they can cut cost. I can’t imagine eliminating the AF motor actually cutting the cost more than a few bucks – it’s really only done to save space, not money. A 100% plastic body would certainly save a bit, but how many people would spend $1500 on a camera that is that fragile? The profits would be razor-thin on it, so while it may be possible to do, it makes no sense for a company to do that while a much higher profit body (D800) is guaranteed to be sold out for another 6 months. It would definitely take some sales away from the D800. If a sub-$2000 full frame with a new sensor is ever released, it would not make financial sense to do it this year. It’s the same logic as not putting the D4 sensor in a smaller body until initial sales of the top-end body have dropped.

          It doesn’t really matter though. From what I’ve read the only source admin has revealed is the Chinese site, which has presented the D600 as a joke, not an actual prediction based on anything. If he can reveal a legit source for the rumor, maybe we should start to consider it. Right now it seems 99% of you guys are taking it as fact when I’d give the rumor for a full frame under $1800 less than a 5% probability.

          • areader

            Rob, you are defeating your own arguments. Andrew is spot on. The market decides and the market wants a ~$1599 FF camera. D3s sensor is going on four years old it can’t be that expensive to make as it was back in 2009. Nikon would be silly to lose this demand to Canon who is also surely working on such a camera that you think is impossible to make. But seriously, simply wait for a few more months and we will know…

            • Kerry33

              Full frame sensor getting cheaper bcause of advancement in technology? Since when? D8OO costs almost RM10,000 in my country malaysia. Which transalate to around 1000USD more than the price of D700. Mr Rob wasn’t wrong. There’s always a premium to pay, for u to be in the Full frame camp.

            • areader

              Kerry33, new sensors cost more $$$ because they are NEW. Old sensors have their assembly lines paid for already. If you make more old FF sensors you are only seeing more of a ROI if you put those into cheaper bodies.

            • roy

              It’s not funny seeing how some can’t seem to imagine beyond the present!! as if everything has been invented and there is nothing left for the future!

              About D600, there is a huge demand for it, whoever get’s it first will win a massive market. Technically it’s possible, but my only worry is the marketing guys there at Nikon decide to play safe thinking that a cheaper FF camera would cannibalize their more expensive lineup.

      • How about those 5d mark 2 they are on sale for $1800, are you suggesting that cannon sells those for fun?
        Once something is designed for mass production it gets cheaper.
        Of cause they can make a FF body under 2,000 just wait and see.
        With this new camera and the new FF lenses we will see a lot of people moving from DX to FF, most of them probably already got FF lenses sitting around already.

      • Hom Thogan

        Sony isn’t the best example for pricing structures, mostly because most of their electronics are way overpriced for their features…

  • HDR

    A lot has been said by those who own loads of old Nikkors and demand a focus drive included in D600. The other thing that they also unwittingly revealed is that they have little desire to buy new glasses. That is, they are low margin customers who may conflict with Nikon’s grand scheme of expanding market shares by recruiting new customers and enlarge its lens repertoire.

    It also doesn’t help that some of those who want motors are exceeding rude and imbecilic, e.g. Remedy

    • KnightPhoto

      Exactly. The lack of a screw-drive motor encourages customers to buy AF-S lenses. Sounds like something Nikon as a company would want to encourage yes? As in, “we’ve got this bargain body here for you, but we’d like to encourage you to buy our latest lens offerings too”. And TBH all of the f1.8 AF-S primes are a dream from both a performance and price perspective.

      Also… I think the $1500 price point is too low. Based on FX sensor costing $500 and DX sensor costing $50, the D600 would have to cost $500 more than a D7000, so that means minimum $1700, plus a little more FX premium means I expect closer to $2K than $1.5K.

      People with screw-drive lenses can buy a D800 or D400 (or any of the full-sized bodies).

      • Vin

        Yes, I think hard to see an D600 as reported as low as $1500, more like $1750-$1850, with a little more, a D7000 with 18pm or 24mp. Not a D3200 FX, more of a D7000 with FX, . That might rule the market. Would be Nikon slam dunk!

        • dave9t5

          If the body construction of the rumoured D600 is closer to the D5100 than the D7000 (e.g. polymer instead of magnesium) then you could expect to see savings at the retail price level of several hundred dollars more. There are other places to reduce cost, such as pentamirror instead of a pentaprism, etc, etc.

          I would switch over from Pentax in a heartbeat if this body comes out at that price. Any AF lens without FTM (full time manual override) is useless to me anyways. The selections of used manual focus Nikkors and current Voigtlanders and reasonably priced AF-S lenses (35, 50, 85/1.8).

          • dave9t5

            …makes for a compelling system.

            (got a bit ahead of myself on the “Reply” button.

          • john

            I really hope they don’t release an FX with a pentamirror viewfinder…

  • if this camera has built in AF i’m buying it. if not i’m buying a D3

  • New D600 looks like it will be an entry level FF camera. Maybe a D400 as the last high end DX camera. Looks like end of the Dxxxx series is nearing if the D600 rumors turn out to be true. Affordable FX cameras on the way. Who knows a D400/D500 maybe at the price point as the D3200 is today in a year or two.

  • Haswell

    There’s no point for Nikon to introduce another FX body with crippled performance. Those who are happy with D3200 (mini size, portable) & D7000 (good fps, video, very good ISO) will not be induced to upgrade. One thing, one reason I upgrade to Dslr from P&S is the shutter speed, the high burst rate, the very short shutter lag. If Nikon releases a 2nd cheaper FX body with a shutter performance of D3200 which already has 24 MPx, people would ignore this “No Man’s Land” camera model. A few incentives for enthusiast to upgrade from D7000/d300s to D600:

    -Higher ISO performance, smooth Noise Reduction, superb detail retention
    -Larger viewfinder (the one on D300 is very cramped after using D700 for a few days!)
    -High frame rate (at least like Canon 5D Mark III’s 6fps)
    -Well distributed AF points, don’t have to be more than 51, or even 40
    -Smaller body, lighter, lighter. D800 is impressively built, but for enthusiast it’s like taking a tank to the beach when a mini SUV is sufficient.
    -Better video control than D7000

    I will switch to Nikon in a heartbeat. Canon lenses are way too overpriced.

  • Charlie Martin

    The lack of a built in AF motor isn’t detering me from getting the D600 and it’s battery grip. All but one of my lenses is AFS. My Tamron 70-200 2.8 isn’t. I don’t have a problem manually focusing that lens. I find the AF-S lenses to be faster and better than the older AI/AIS/AF-D lenses. Change is a fact of life and Nikon is going in that direction in eliminating the AF motor. It someone can’t adapt or change along with Nikon, then the problem isn’t with Nikon but, with the person voicing their opinion.

    • vertigo

      Your logic seems to be circular. As long as the person voicing their opinion is consumers, their voice counts. The AF-S lenses are not faster, they’re slower at focusing.

      • A lens’s focusing speed is not relative to it being AF-S or screw driven; it is determined by the lens and its intended uses. The 80-400mm VR AF-D is screw driven and very slow, while the Nikon AF-S 24-70mm ƒ/2.8G is extremely fast, and the 70-200mm ƒ/2.8G VRII is even faster.

  • I’ll bet the D600 will be just as entry level as it’s DX counterparts the D3xxx/D5xxx. And if that’s the case, It doesn’t make sense for most D7000 users to upgrade. No way I’m going to. Lack of a focus motor isn’t the only thing you miss on the entry level models.

    – can’t control CLS flashes with the built-in flash.
    – no high speed shutter sync
    – only one control dial
    – no top LCD
    – ISO range doesn’t step in increments of 1/3 ev (whole steps only in some cases)
    – important features hidden in menus
    – non-important features, like scene modes, are emphasized
    – lack of customizable fn buttons
    – no DoF preview button
    – and the list goes on and on

    A full frame sensor or 24+ megapixels means very little to me with that list of handicaps. Hopefully the next iteration of DX (D7100?) will be amazing and give us DX diehards a real reason to upgrade!

    • Charlie Martin

      Right now, everything that is being mentioned as to what the D600 will have is mere spectulation

      • Nikon”Rumors”.com 🙂

        But yes, it’s speculation. Speculation based on history and the current state of affairs, but speculation nonetheless.

    • RR

      Great points you touched there, even for a FF user like me, those handicaps make me want to vomit, I hope for a simple plain (non saturated in weird buttons or non important features) camera like the good old D700.

      I hope Nikon makes a decent camera nothing like a D3100 or a D5100 , those cameras are discusting (to me)

  • Toli

    Nikon D600 FF = $1500 USD

    Sony A99 FF = $1200 USD

    Sony A77 APS-C = $799 USD

    What is on your mind?

    • Rob

      Except that the A77 is $1400, the A99 can’t be less than ~$2000, and the D600 (which actually won’t ever exist as this is a bunk rumor) would have to be $2200+ (considering Sony takes a loss on basically every product they make and Nikon won’t do that).

      I’m going to start making bogus predictions on Chinese sites and see if I can get mine posted on NR.

      • D400 = FX

        Sell your D700 as soon as you can. 😉 Its going to drop pretty much. AND get the fcuk out of here.

        • Tung Nguyen

          +1 to the above comment

  • Kojihugy

    Ordered a d800 right away after seeing the rumor.

  • Andrew

    Everybody, I have good and bad news for you, which one do you want to hear first?

    Ok, the good news; Nikon has proved that they can make and sell a full frame DSLR camera for the low “low” price $1,500. Now the bad news; it does not have all of the features (built-in AF motor) many of you want. Now for my views: This overall is a good thing, because we now know “unequivocally” that Nikon can deliver an awesome full frame camera with a load of features for the enthusiasts quite inexpensively. So a few hundred dollars more we give us such a camera!

    One commenter once said that I was on “drugs” for suggesting that a full frame camera would be released for $2,000 or less. I told him that I was on the same drugs when Nikon introduced the incredible D7000 camera with magnesium alloy body for only $1,200. So without sounding boastful, I saw this coming! The same technological advances that have caused electronics to get cheaper every year is now impacting the photographic market. I hope the repeated argument on this site that full frame (FF) sensors are too expensive to result in an affordable FF camera is now null and void! Well, anyway for argument sake, Nikon has just proved that I was actually drinking something considerably less intoxicating ( i.e. soda).

    So if this “highly reliable” (what else do you expect from this most esteemed site!) rumor about the impending D600 FF camera at $1,500 proves correct, these are good times indeed for photographers everywhere, especially those living in countries that are not as wealthy as America (or the other wealthy developed nations). Good times indeed!

    • Andrew

      correction… “So a few hundred dollars more will give us such a camera!”

  • Rob

    Seriously though, how much can a body’s AF motor possibly cost? $10? It’s basically a motor and a few gears. The cost in repairing them is almost entirely labor costs.

    I’m pretty sure every body without an AF motor is that way for space savings, not cost savings. Can anyone produce any credible evidence to refute this? If not, please stop arguing that a $1500 FF camera is possible simply because they left out a $10 part.

    • Slim

      Rob, you are just absolutely right.

      Furthermore, space saving is entirely in the mind of designing a smaller body than a D700 (regarding a FF pov).

      If the rumor would be true, and assuming that it will obviously be an improvement regarding the D700, it would be an amazing 2nd body for a D700 owner like me.

    • Andrew

      Rob, I know you are talking about me! But regardless, I definitely get your point and it makes sense. My primary thinking (though not expressed in my previous posts) is that Nikon may have a number of ways or motivations to reduce cost, even if not by savings from the AF motor. But as far as the AF motor is concern, the resulting cost (even if it cost Nikon $10 to manufacture) to the consumer may not necessarily be an issue of technology or manufacturing cost, but marketing. In other words, if Nikon perceives that folks buying a camera with an AF motor may purchase a smaller number of lenses, they might make up for that fact by charging a premium of $300 or more extra for each camera sold that includes a built-in AF motor. On the other hand, if Nikon perceives that by selling an entry level full frame camera at $1,500 will result in those purchasers buying more Nikon glass because they are new to the brand and as such do not have old AF lenses needing a built-in AF motor in the camera, then that might justify the lower cost of an alleged camera such as the D600.

      Now consider laser and ink-jet printers, their manufacturers may practically give those products away at cost for the future benefits of selling consumables such as ink cartridges or toners. Clearly all of this about Nikon is speculation, but if the cost of manufacturing each full frame sensor for a high end camera is $500 as you alluded, then surely a camera selling at $1,500 should significantly reduce that cost considerably if the factory is turning out five to ten times the volume, since volume is a critical component of manufacturing cost.

  • Vin

    Part ring for F mount AF $29.95, AF motor $59.95, instillation $18.95. soft wear to run AF and calibrate all lenses back to 1986. $119.86. , $15.64 royalties to engineers, from 1986, 1990, 1996, 2002, 2012,
    cost of inflation. $19.50, increase for profit margin $7.50. + plus we all want it, $24.75.
    total $296.10

  • Tung Nguyen

    Rob: A 100% plastic body would certainly save a bit, but how many people would spend $1500 on a camera that is that fragile?

    –> I think many people would $1500. My D90 is plastic and it’s certainly NOT “fragile”. And come on, $1500 for a full-frame, who wouldn’t dream it ?

    this will be my step up from D90 if it’s true 😡 😡 😡

  • happysnapper63

    24 mp seems a bit of a coincidence with the recent D3200 announcement. So I must confess to being a bit dubious about this rumoured model being FX, but rumouring it as FX will certainly keep traffic volumes up.

    I have expected a low end FX body for about 2 years and a low end full frame will sell well, even though it further dismantles the established camera hierarchy upon which so many on-line photographers depend for their mental well being and self esteem.

    No body motor, so what. I have one D lens and it is noisy and not as accurate at close distances as my SWM, HSM and HSD lenses, I certainly will not be buying anymore screw drive. Again leaving the motor out of such a body screws up “I can autofocus any lens and you cant” point scoring.

    Rather than competing in the current market, Nikon is reshaping the market, if this rumour is true, as it has done with the D4 and D800, where no longer is there one body at the top of the tree, but two depending upon what and how you shoot. Leaving the primary debate being “mine was more expensive than yours” which I have observed with very high end fishing tackle. The question remains as to whether that reshaping includes the demise of the very high end DX body (as opposed to sensor) as currently represented by the D300S. DX sensors are closing the gap to the point that for 99.9 percentage of shot by 95% of photographers they will meet or exceed actual requirements. DOF is slightly different, but whether that differences is a plus or a minus depends upon what you shoot and with which lenses.

    +1000000 to Nikon for kicking away the crutches the gear nerds rely upon as stated above.

    -1000000 if they drop the D300S concept in the sense of not producing a replacement.

    I have a D7000 and a D300S, one is by far the better body, (only for reasons of rapid on body setting control, I do not give a toss if it is metal) the other has the better sensor by a country mile. Need to bring the two together.

  • Bernd

    I hope the D600 will have an build in AF motor so that I can use my “old” AF lenses like 2.8/80-200. I can easily miss some of the other featurs but the AF motor would be essential. D800 and above are simply too expensive as this is not the only hobby. In case not I would need to wait for D700 SALE.

  • Iron Oak

    My ideal D600 would be 24MP, excellent low light ability, at least 6fps with good buffer, excellent AF system, great HD video or easier to explain. A D800 with 24MP instead of 36MP and at least 6fps

    • FFboy


      Would seem like the perfect 5D Mk III competitor. But maybe 39 AF points instead of 51 at that price point.

      I see it more as a D7000 with a FF sensor, which would be brilliant.

  • Iron Oak

    I would happily pay $2000.00 for a revised D800 as I expressed above in a D600 body. Otherwise If the D600 didn’t have those features I don’t see the point in building it.

  • Vin

    I woke up today thinking maybe the D600 will be an answer to the OM-D& the new Samsung cameras, EVIL FX, not DSLR, this would be a price cut, this coud be a 24mp, FX, and still be at $1500, less moving parts. It might be the end of DX? Maybe that’s why we are seeing the posibillity of low priced small zooms and repeat wide 24mm, 28mm, 35mm. And they could use DX lenses also.

  • and here we are, if there is no built in AF motor, as someone rightfully mentioned, the niche of old time nikoners (the group i belong to) will be ignored in favor of pushing people to update their lenses. A FF with no AF motor? right…
    So sensors keep getting better in low light, pixel count keeps raising, cameras film like a proper TV camera…still nothing in sight for actual photography. No Nikon and other manufacturers, not everyone is a sports photographer or a paparazzi. This year, i will sell my last piece of digital and get a Mamiya 7ii. Luckily my old FE still does a better job with a 50mm 1.2 AIS than a D800, at making pictures nice to look at i mean. And i shoot when there is light so high ISO, well nice to have but no thks. The worse that could happen to digital photography is the mass marketization when brands aim at selling expensive SLRs to amateurs who can afford them, even though there is very little photography involved… but there is a good side to it: so much great MF gear for so cheap on Ebay 🙂

    • jorg

      mister, we all cried very much with you. it IS a shame, what nikon pulled off on you…

    • RR

      I respect your post Ronan, agree in many ways

  • SSN

    look at the video @ 3:00. The guy is wearing a d600 strap i think.

  • New era of prices?

    Nikon is cutting prices on all the DSLR, when compared with previous models, you will not be expected? Since the technology and the manufacture of certain components were cheaper and accessible, such as sensors?

    I see people extremely surprised with the price of the D600 to the point that if the D600 is real, then it is garbage, or maximum, comparable with the 3200? geeee!

    It is for these mentalities that many brands exploit our purse without mercy!

    We pay very dearly our hobby or profession, and in the digital world, we pay very dearly for equipment that are out of date one or two years later.

    However the Nikon lenses and accessories are still expensive. We have the example of the recently released wireless module for around $ 800, this world is crazy! And madmen are those who eat these things.

  • tukiluk

    If this does not have a jack for microphone I will be very sad – you cannot make a proper video without a mic (internal mic means no mic at all).
    No AF motor, body build out of plastic and other unimportant shit doesn’t matter – pro photographers have a break, buy D800 and leave this for us amateurs.

  • Landscape Photo

    Why small FX body? I mean miniature small, like D3xxx sized FX. What is the meaning?

    Nice to have this small, only if the FX lenses were compact too.

    Yet it has no real advantage if the lenses are not in comparison to that size. Look at the available FX lenses. Except for a 50mm prime, all others will cause the camera to point downwards when hung on the neck.

    It will be such an unbalanced system. Tiny body + big lens is absurd. The D600 will get lost behind a moderately sized zoom like 16-35mm f/4 or 24-120mm f/4 VR, let alone anything bigger…

    D800 is the optimum size for FX !

    Nikon must have gone mad if this rumor is for real. If I were in the position to choose between entry-level FX (D600) or high-end DX (D7000) due to financial restraint, I’d go for the latter.

  • Shawn

    I’m secretly hoping Nikon is phasing out AF-D lenses and finally refreshing them with better AF-S versions (I mean getting rid of the focus motor in the bodies of all but the highest pro models). I know they’re good & cheap, but I am a little tired of incompatibility and having to hear about it from Canon fanbois.

  • Grim Git

    For those, like me, who are on a budget (D5000 user) and can’t afford an FX camera at the moment, this is the best rumour I’ve read here, ever.
    Whether or not it’s true… well…. I don’t care. I haven’t felt this good in years !
    All I need is a stripped-down D700. At $1500, the good old tried-and tested 12mp sensor will suit me just fine. I don’t care about any fancy video, but would like to see a built-in AF motor…. that would swing it for me.

    • Anonymous Maximus

      Then why don’t you buy a 2nd hand D700 in good condition?

      • Iron oak


      • Grim Git


  • Just got my D800 and a brand new 70-200 f/2.8 VR II

  • Günther

    Why, why, why we don’t get a firmware update for the D700?
    I would pay a lot for new features, so Nikon can earn money and do their support in the old fashioned way (like they did it in film era).

    Why not?

    To sell a D600 (which sounds to me like a refurbished D700 but with less features)?

  • TDL

    IF this is sub $2k and includes AF motor I’ll be all over this if it ever comes out. I’ve been disappointed with all the AF-S lenses (except 70-200 which I have no use for) and I’m not about to sell all my primes just to get shoddy new ones with fancy AF-S that barely works as good as the old lenses. Can’t quite bring myself to upgrade to D800…..but need an improvement on the D7000…..might be switching to the dark side (Canon) at the end of the year if I’m not impressed with anything Nikon has to offer. On paper this sounds like it might be the ticket depending on ISO performance and AF-Motor.

  • Mr Wobbly

    Apologies if someone has already posted this as I haven’t read all the comments. But, regarding the Google search, if you search on D600 in quotation marks (“d600” you get… nothing.

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