Feeds
90%
Nikon D4 full-frame 16Mp DSLR camera

Nikon D4 DSLR review

Full-frame flagship finesse

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

One thing that might give current Nikon owners pause for thought when considering adding a D4 to their kit is that you won’t be able to use your old battery packs with it. The D4 uses a completely new battery, the EN-EL18, which also needs its own charger. More surprising too, is the fact that this new battery pack is far less powerful than the EN-EL4 mounted on the D3s, delivering roughly 1600 fewer shots per charge. However, Nikon engineer Toshiaki Akagi has a different take on this which calls into question CIPA's battery testing methods, compared to real world usage.

Nikon D4 full-frame 16Mp DSLR camera

Play your cards right: the latest XQD format rubs shoulders with the aging CompactFlash storage option

Moving with the times, the Nikon D4 replaces one of the two CompactFlash card slots of the D3s with an XQD card slot – a high speed storage format headed by Sony and Nikon, and backed by Canon among others. Shooting with the D4 using a Sony XQD card is truly a remarkable experience, such is its speed, although you will have to source a compatible card reader for the downloading. And there’s already an XQD 2.0 spec waiting in the wings for CompactFlash Association approval later this year.

The D4 shoots in a variety of file formats including NEF (RAW) 12 or 14 bit, lossless compressed, compressed or uncompressed, TIFF (RGB), JPEG and NEF (RAW)+JPEG. My software of choice for converting the D4’s NEF files is the Adobe's recently updated Photoshop Lightroom 4.1. Although at the time of writing Lightroom does not yet support tethered shooting for the D4, it does an excellent job on the conversion side of things.

Nikon D4 full-frame 16Mp DSLR camera

An excellent all-rounder, what's not to like?

However you look at the Nikon D4, both as an upgrade of the D3s or a new release in its own right, it is undoubtedly an outstanding and powerful camera. It might not be the game-changer the D3s was when first released over a couple of years ago but it doesn’t have to be. As with the D3s I remain very impressed with the way the camera performed in the poor lighting conditions of the fashion shoot, especially the truthfulness of the colours. The speed and accuracy of the AF system in low light was also a real pleasure to use allowing assured shooting in all conditions.

Verdict

RH Recommended Medal

Sometimes making a great camera a better one is more difficult than just making a great camera. The D4 fixes every little complaint pro users had over the previous model and adds some unexpected but well-received features. My final take on the D4 is that if you are a pro working in sports, photojournalism, stage or wildlife photography the only thing stopping you from getting one should be lack of cash. For those with less exacting needs, the value for money factor might not be so obvious. ®

Catherine Monfils is a professional photographer specialising in portraiture, lifestyle and fashion.

More Camera Reviews…

Pentax
K-01
Sigma
SD1 Merill
Hasselblad
H4D-200MS
200Mp camera
Canon
PowerShot G1 X
Sony
NEX-7

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

90%
Nikon D4 full-frame 16Mp DSLR camera

Nikon D4 DSLR review

Full-frame shooter gets upgraded in every area possible.
Price: £5290 (body-only) RRP

More from The Register

next story
Xperia Z3: Crikey, Sony – ANOTHER flagship phondleslab?
The Fourth Amendment... and it IS better
Don't wait for that big iPad, order a NEXUS 9 instead, industry little bird says
Google said to debut next big slab, Android L ahead of Apple event
Microsoft to enter the STRUGGLE of the HUMAN WRIST
It's not just a thumb war, it's total digit war
Ex-US Navy fighter pilot MIT prof: Drones beat humans - I should know
'Missy' Cummings on UAVs, smartcars and dying from boredom
Netscape Navigator - the browser that started it all - turns 20
It was 20 years ago today, Marc Andreeesen taught the band to play
A drone of one's own: Reg buyers' guide for UAV fanciers
Hardware: Check. Software: Huh? Licence: Licence...?
The Apple launch AS IT HAPPENED: Totally SERIOUS coverage, not for haters
Fandroids, Windows Phone fringe-oids – you wouldn't understand
Apple SILENCES Bose, YANKS headphones from stores
The, er, Beats go on after noise-cancelling spat
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.