Take in the view
The Live View button has also changed and is now surrounded by a lever that makes you select either ‘photography’ or ‘movie’ live view mode. The Live View itself has been re-designed and it now offers two modes – Quite and Silent – for reducing noise while shooting. Simultaneous mode enables viewing images on the LCD screen and on an external monitor using the HDMI port – a handy addition to allow clients and art directors to follow the action. It also makes sense that the D4 now sports a dedicated video recording button.
Numerous enhancements minimise the fiddle factor
For me, one of the most welcome additions must be the zoom in/out button that avoids having to use a dial to zoom in and out of images in playback – what a relief. Finally, all the buttons are mildly backlit for use in the dark. These are just some of the modifications and, if they seem minor in writing, I can vouch that they certainly make handling and operating the D4 much more comfortable and less demanding compared to its predecessor.
The Nikon D4 features a 3.2in 921k dots LCD display which maintains the same resolution of the D3s, but it is now slightly larger and includes a special anti-reflection and anti-fog gel, along with a light sensor for automatic brightness adjustment and a dual-axis virtual horizon. Most of the shooting in sunny Ibiza was in high contrast and very bright conditions, but surprisingly I never once had any trouble reading the screen.
Field work operative
The optical viewfinder remains the same great tool it was on the D3s, with 100 per cent coverage and magnificent brightness, but now has a new and better focusing screen and the option to use grid-lines in the menu. The intelligence, subtlety and usefulness of the changes are evidence of Nikon’s commendable efforts to listen and learn from customer feedback.
If anyone expected Nikon to arm the D4 with a massive sensor resolution in D800-style, then they will be disappointed. Yes, it is true that at very low ISO sensitivities the low-ish resolution can be noticeable, but let’s not forget that this camera was made to perform on the field, where higher sensitivities are the norm, rather than in the studio where controlled lighting minimises the need for ISO ratings above the low hundreds. With this in mind, a 16MP resolution seems the perfect choice. Avoiding over-packing the sensor with pixels helps retain impressive image quality and noise control all the way up to ISO 12800.
Next page: Sample Stills and Video
Re: How much?
"The F4 in 1989 was about £1200 or about £1900 today"
Not sure about those figures, using the calculator here:
£1200 in 1989 looks more like £4000 today - much closer to the price of the D4
Re: How much? @Glesga
"digital has extra costs related to post-production that can be difficult to sell to a client,"
To be honest thats a ridiculous statement. There is no reason why you need to do post processing on digital any more than you do on film. The reason why you tend to do post processing on digital is its easier and cheaper giving you the ability to give a photo a big lift with 5 mins of work while you probably wouldnt have bothered on film.
Re: How much?
Well you just going to have to get the cheaper model then arent you. Canon 1D counterpart isnt cheap either.
The question is whether you need or want it. The 11 fps shooting is amazing but it depends to what type of photography you do. You wont need it for portrait, landscape, weddings , etc. Journalism , sport and animal would of course benefit . So grab the D800?
Re: How much? @Glesga
Oh, but there is a need to do post. While film tends to have a character of its own, the digital files (in pro cameras at least) try to be as neutral as possible, leaving you more latitude for post, which is exactly why you HAVE to do post (even if it's just a general curves, saturation and sharpness adjustment).
I know that in most cases, I fine-tune the exposure manually in post (Yes, I'm the kind of loser who's often off by 1/3 of a stop, if not more. I know, I wouldn't last a day back in the, erm, day.), then just apply a nice curve/sharpening/sat preset of my own making, and well, Bob's your uncle. Not a lot of work required, but FAR more control than with film.
If you're a pro, then seensible tax planning makes the cost less problematic.
Unless you've got the wrong accountant.