Nikon acknowledges the D4/D800 lockup issue, offers temporary fix

Can you spot the problem?

In a statement to PDN Online, Nikon USA acknowledged the D4/D800 lockup issue that I reported a month ago (several readers and other websites have reported similar issues). Nikon is currently working on a permanent solution, in the mean time you can turn off both the 'Highlights' and 'RGB Histogram' display options in order to avoid this problem:

"Nikon has received reports of a small number of D4/D800 users who are experiencing 'locking up' issues, where the camera becomes unresponsive until the battery is removed and reinserted. Nikon is investigating a permanent solution to this issue and will update users accordingly. To immediately resolve this issue, users can turn off both the 'Highlights' and 'RGB Histogram' display options in the 'Playback Display Options' sub-menu found in the 'Playback' menu. Nikon apologizes for any inconvenience this may have caused users."

There is another D800 focus/viewfinder issue that was also confirmed by Nikon. Here is an example sent in by a reader:

In addition to this blog post, there is an entire thread on the [NR] forum for all D4/D800 related issues.

This entry was posted in Nikon D4, Nikon D800. Bookmark the permalink. Trackbacks are closed, but you can post a comment.
  • Happy Dude

    How could Nikon possibly let out their two newest cameras, both of which are supposed ot be professional-grade, without testing for problems like this? It’s pathetic, just like Canon were pathetic for their light leak issue in the 5DIII.

    I’m glad I waited for the reviews to come out before making my decision. I had originally ordered a D800E before stepping back and cancelling the order and deciding to wait instead. In my D3S, it seems I have Nikon’s last professional-grade camera. Its screen is accurate, it’s never crashed, and I’ve had almost 80,000 shots out of it in nearly two-and-a-half years.

    Just step back from the measurebating for a moment and take stock. Those of us who actually work with cameras are supposed to spend money in the thousands of dollars on a camera which crashes because the highlights and histogram are on, where the LCD has a yellow-green cast so we can’t see how our colours look, and where one can’t even properly see one’s focus because the finder is misaligned! And then there’s the amateur-grade issue with the D800’s slow Live View, which also soft anyway.

    I got one of Nikon’s last true professional-grade cameras. My images may be a mere 12 megapixels, but everything just goes without me having to mess around with two different types of memory card. The D3S is ergonomically perfect, and everything… just… goes. Everything works exactly how it should work with no ifs, no buts and no feelings of regret about where my $6000 (inc. tax) went.

    • burgerman

      Well same here. D800 though. No issues at all.

      But even if there was, its almost inevitable on something this new/complex initially and I wouldnt have been surprised. Those that do have problems and I bet theres only a tiny percentage, will get them sorted by sending in, or a firmware update if thats the cause. If this stuff worries you you should wait and buy in a years time. Because all software has bugs. Even when fixed over and over… Its always a work in progress.

  • Sahaja

    Actually the problems with the D800 seem to be much worse than the Canon light leak issue – that really only affected very long exposures using auto exposure in very dim light with the top LCD turned on.

    Canon also publicly acknowledged the issue straight away.

    • Gary

      @Sahaja – not sure whether you’re a troll, or you have a genuine point to make.

      Personally it matters not a jot to me whether Canon or Nikon is “better”. I bought my gear to take photographs, not to wear as a badge.

      This is the NIKONrumors website, and my concerns are around the quality of the products I own. Am I happy about the reported D800 problems? Absolutely not!

      So, I’m still trying to get a handle on the % of D800s that are affected by these problems, and how Nikon is dealing with those whose cameras have these problems.

      So that we may get a handle on how widespread this problem is, are there any step-by-step actions we can take to test whether our cameras are susceptible to:
      1) the “green” display problem,
      2) the AF problem,
      3) the camera “lock-up” problem, and/or
      4) other potential issues.

      To date, mine seems to be performing okay. But I would like to recreate the scenario(s) that would test it. So (if possible) please, let’s have an idiot’s guide on how to recreate these problems consistently.

      I know that this might not be possible. The problems might be too intermittent. But let’s try.



      • Gary

        Skip the “BUT” – loose nut on the keyboard 🙂

  • Sahaja

    A couple of exploding cameras, faulty batteries, camera lockup, misaligned viewfinders, problems with left auto focus point, ….

    What happened to Nikon’s QC ~ don’t they thoroughly check these cameras before they leave the plant?

    If necessary charge an extra $100 for the camera – that should be enough to pay for someone to run a whole battery of tests on each camera before it is shipped.

    • burgerman

      You hear about the issues on sites like this. But in reality its a tiny minority. All those with cameras and there are a lot like myself, with no problems of any kind generally dont post about it…

      • Oregon Native

        If that were the case then the odds of one person getting more than one defect must be huge, right?

        In the last three years I’ve had three pro lenses and two pro bodies with serious enough issues immediately following purchase to warrant sending to Nikon. In ALL cases they confirmed the issue and fixed. Well, to be truthful one issue they fixed and broke something else in doing so. I had to return the lens the day after I received it from Nikon service. I did get it back the second time in perfect working order.

        The fact is these are supposed to be precision bodies and lenses and Nikon’s poor QA is evident.

  • We have a d800 and a d4 and they both lock up. So I guess that it’s not a small percent if all cameras that are in trouble… I think it’s all of them but only people who use rgb histogram and highlights are aware of it, since by default those options are off. Turning them off again is not a solution for me since it’s what I use the most. I sent my D800 back to Nikon spain and they turn it back saying there was no problem with it!!! I love nikon cameras but I really think NPS is very very bad, at least inSpain. It’s not the way to go with profesionals… We should start to sew and go to court like in the States, they would probably be more careful in Spain…

    • burgerman

      >>> I think it’s all of them but only people who use rgb histogram and highlights are aware of it,

      Its all ON on mine. No lockups in 1660 shots so far. 2 cards, every test I can think of doing. So its not every camera, but may be card related?

      • No card related, it happens with different cards including brand new lexar and sandisk cards. I think it’s only question of time you get a lock. We shoot around 3000 pictures/wedding and get 2 or 3 lock issues per wedding. Not always though, it’s totally random and I sure know what I’m doing with the camera, it’s not that I don’t know how to turn it on like some moron suggested. I got my first lock on the D4 around shot 3000. The issue is bigger than what they said after 6 weeks fus compliing about it… And if they don’t fix it fast it will end up blowing on Nikon’s face.

  • Alex Ball

    I filmed a wedding Saturday just gone, had three lockups. D800, 24-70, sandisk Extreme pro 64gb 95mb/s formatted in-camera. Was not taking any video (or photos) at the time. Lockup’s occurred when camera was in sleep mode and upon pressing the live view button to enter video live view, the rear yellow led came on and the camera was not responding for 10-15seconds (live view did not start) after which it finally switched off and then worked correctly. This happen 3 times between 10am-11pm. Have reported to local Nikon head office, they have forwarded on my comments.


    • Alex

      Note: I do not have the RGB histogram or highlights display options enabled (didn’t know they existed until reading this!)


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  • neversink

    So far no problems with the D800…. I filmed an unboxing, but never edited it. I realize there are so many unboxing vids, but if I edit it down, I promise it will be a bit different… Never did one before….

  • Laurence Pierce

    My D4 has locked up once, I do have Histogram and highlights turned ON, so I hope to get an update from Nikon soon

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