Thursday, September 13, 2012

The Nikon D600 is a reality!

Not long ago the official announcement was made that the D600 is here. And not only that available in less than a week!!!. September 18th it will supposedly hit the shelves. I imagine preorders are going to be through the roof so I'd expect a wait. At full-frame camera at $2099 is going to fly off the shelves.

The D600, is as most people expected, essentially a D7000 with a full-frame 24MP sensor. Of course it's not exactly the same, it did inherit some features from the D800 as well.

The similarities between the D600 and the D7000:

  • 39 point AF system with 9 cross-type.
  • 2016 pixel RGB metering sensor
  • 5.5 fps for D600 and 6 fps D7000 (pretty much the same). 
  • Focus mode selector. 
  • Magnesium / polycarbonate body.
  • Scene modes.
  • Double SD slot.
  • U modes.
  • Dual IR sensor for ML-L3
  • Built-in AF motor for non-AF-S lenses. 
The D600 has had a few improvements over the D7000 all inherited from the D800 and mostly features relating to video. 

  • Live View switch for stills/video.
  • Video record button behind the shutter release button.
  • Headphone output
  • Uncompressed HD video though the HDMI out port
  • Expeed 3 processor
  • Auto-ISO.

There are a few things I like about the D600. Pretty much everything it inherited from the D800 is a good thing. The built-in AF motor is also a good thing, but doesn't mean much to me anymore since I've long since made the switch to all AF-S lenses and there really aren't any legacy lenses that interest me except for the 58mm f/1.2 NOCT which is manual focus. The U modes are also a handy option that a lot of people liked on the D7000. I never really used it, but it's there. The dual IR sensor for the ML-L3 is a big point for me. It always irked me that Nikon out this great feature on only it's lower end models. The inexpensive ML-L3 is a great thing and obviously it's not an expensive option to add. Instead of a $13 remote I have to spend $200 on a Nikon ML-3 (it does have more features, but still). 5.5 fps isn't bad. 100% viewfinder! This is great, no guestimating your composition. The D600 also get the amazing Auto-ISO from the D800. This feature is amazing. It recognizes your focal length and matches the shutter speed plus you can give more priority to speed over lower ISO's if you wish. The price is also pretty good for an FX camera, I know people were expecting it to be less, but it's still $1000 cheaper than the D700 when it was launched. 

There are quite a few things I don't like about the D600. First and foremost, it's not a D700 replacement. For me and a lot of others, the D700 was perfect. Pro build and insanely good low-light performance. The D800 just isn't the same camera, neither is the D4. First of all the magnesium / poly body don't stand up to abuse well. Some may say, buy a D4, but I like the smaller body with the option of adding a grip when needed. The focus mode selector is a pain, maybe I'm just not used to it, but I hated it when the D7000 came out and I don't like it on the D800 either. Flipping a switch is easier than pressing buttons and rotating dials. The AF module. Not enough focus points and -1EV sensitivity compared to -2EV on the D800. SD cards!!! I hate them. They are flimsy and I break them. I have broken every single one I have had. I have NEVER broken a CF card in my 10 years of using them. I was also disappointed with the kit lens. It's not great and it's way over-priced for a variable aperture zoom. 

In any case, I'm not trying to rag on the D600. It's a great camera for someone who wants to get into the FX game for relatively cheap. It's an FX camera for Joe Everyman. Obviously this camera isn't aimed at photographers like me. Personally I was hoping for a 16MP D800 style camera. Something for low-light, that shoots fast, but doesn't weight a ton or cost $6000. I have no doubt this will be a huge success for Nikon and will probably bring up the cost of Nikon's older AF-D lenses which could be great for folks who want to sell their old glass. 

All-in all the D600 looks like a very capable mid-level camera that you can use high quality FX glass with to its full potential. Let's face it, the only ultra-wide Nikon had for DX wasn't great. The D600 will allow you to use the 14-24mm f/2.8G and get the full experience. You'll also be able to use the newest fast primes, 28mm f/1.8G, 24mm f/1.4G, 35mm f/1.4G, as well as the great 50mm f/1.4.G as they were intended, with no crop factor.

Here's Nikon's press release for the D600.

And here are the specs:


  • Type
    Single-lens reflex digital camera
  • Lens Mount
    Nikon F bayonet mount
  • Picture Angle
    Nikon FX format
  • Effective Pixels
    24.3 million
  • Sensor Size
    35.9mm x 24.0mm
  • Image Sensor Format
  • Image Sensor Type
  • Total Pixels
    24.7 million
  • Dust-reduction system
    Image sensor cleaning
  • Dust-Off Reference Photo
  • Image Area (pixels)
    6,016 x 4,016 

    4,512 x 3,008

    3,008 x 2,008 
    3,936 x 2,624 

    2,944 x 1,968

    1,968 x 1,312
  • File Format Still Images
    JPEG: JPEG-Baseline Compliant; can be selected from Size Priority and Optimal Quality 
    JPEG: JPEG-Baseline Compliant with fine (approx 1:4), Normal (approx 1:8) or Basic (approx 1:16) Compression 
    NEF (RAW): Lossless Compressed, Compressed or Uncompressed 12 or 14 bit 
    TIFF (RGB)
  • Picture Control
    User-customizable Settings 
  • Storage Media
  • Card Slot
    2 Secure Digital (SD)
  • File System
    Compliant with DCF (Design Rule for Camera File System) 2.0 
    DPOF (Digital Print Order Format) 
    EXIF 2.3 (Exchangeable Image File Format for Digital Still Cameras) 
  • Viewfinder
    Eye-level Pentaprism Single-Lens Reflex Viewfinder
  • Viewfinder Frame Coverage
    FX (36x24): 100% Horizontal and 100% Vertical Approx.DX (24x16): 97% Horizontal and 97% Vertical Approx.
  • Viewfinder Magnification
    0.70x Approx.
  • Viewfinder Eyepoint
    20.6mm (-1.0m¯¹)
  • Viewfinder Diopter Adjustment
    Built-in diopter adjustment (-3 to +1 m¯¹)
  • Focusing Screen
    Type B BriteView Clear Matte Mark VIII with AF Area Brackets (grid lines can be displayed)
  • Reflex Mirror
    Quick-return type
  • Lens Aperture
    Instant-return type
  • Depth-of-field Control
  • Lens Compatibility at a Glance***
    AF-S or AF lenses fully compatible 
    Metering with AI lenses
  • Compatible Lenses
    AF NIKKOR lenses, including type G and D lenses (some restrictions apply to PC lenses) and DX lenses (using DX 24 × 16 1.5x image area), AI-P NIKKOR lenses, and non-CPU AI lenses (A and M modes only). 
    IX NIKKOR lenses, lenses for the F3AF, and non-AI lenses cannot be used.
  • Shutter type
    Electronically controlled vertical-travel focal-plane
  • Shutter Speed
    1/4000 to 30 sec. 
  • Fastest Shutter Speed
    1/4000 sec.
  • Slowest Shutter Speed
    30 sec.
  • Flash Sync Speed
    Up to 1/200 sec. 
    Synchronizes with shutter at 1/250s or slower
  • Bulb Shutter Setting
  • Shutter Release Modes
    Continuous low-speed [CL] mode; 1-5 frames per second 
    Continuous high-speed [CH] mode; 5.5 frames per second 
    Mirror-up [Mup] mode 
    Quiet Shutter Release 
    Self-timer mode 
    Single-frame [S] mode
  • Continuous Shooting Options
    CH: Up to 
    5.5 frames per second
    CL: Up to 1-5 frames per second
  • Top Continuous Shooting Speed at full resolution
    5.5 frames per second
  • Self-timer
    2, 5, 10, 20 sec. Timer duration electronically controlled
  • Exposure Metering System
    TTL exposure metering using 2,016-pixel RGB sensor
  • Metering Method
    Center-weighted: Weight of 75% given to 8mm circle in center of frame 
    Matrix: 3D color matrix metering II (type G and D lenses); color matrix metering II (other CPU lenses) 
    Spot: Meters 4mm circle (about 1.5% of frame) centered on selected focus point
  • Metering Range
    0 to 20 EV (3D color matrix or center-weighted metering) 
    0 to 20 EV (spot metering)
  • Exposure Meter Coupling
  • Exposure Modes
    Aperture-Priority (A) 
    Manual (M) 
    Programmed auto with flexible program (P) 
    Shutter-Priority (S)
  • Exposure Compensation
    ±5 EV in increments of 1/3, 1/2 or 1 EV
  • Exposure Bracketing
    2 or 3 frames in steps of 1/3, 1/2, 2/3, 1 or 2 EV
  • Exposure Lock
  • Mirror Lock Up
  • ISO Sensitivity
    ISO 100 - 6400
    Lo-1 (ISO 50)
    Hi-1 (ISO 12,800)
    Hi-2 (ISO 25,600)
  • Lowest Standard ISO Sensitivity
  • Highest Standard ISO Sensitivity
  • Lowest Expanded ISO Sensitivity
    Lo-1 (ISO 50 equivalent)
  • Highest Expanded ISO Sensitivity
    HI-2 (ISO 25,600 equivalent)
  • Expanded ISO Sensitivity Options
    Hi-1 (ISO-12,800 equivalent) in 1/3, 1/2 or 1 EV 
    Hi-2, (ISO-25,600 equivalent) 1 EV
  • Long Exposure Noise Reduction
  • High ISO Noise Reduction
  • Active D-Lighting
    Extra High 
  • D-Lighting Bracketing
    2 frames using selected value for one frame 
    3–5 frames using preset values for all frames
  • Single-point AF Mode
  • Dynamic AF Mode
    Number of AF points: 9, 21, 39 and 39 (3D-tracking)
  • Auto-area AF Mode
  • Autofocus System
    Nikon Multi-CAM 4800 autofocus sensor module with TTL phase detection
  • Detection Range
    -1 to 19 EV (ISO 100, 68°F/20°C)
  • Lens Servo
    Autofocus (AF): Single-servo AF (AF-S); Continuous-servo AF (AF-C); auto AF-S/AF-C selection (AF-A); predictive focus tracking activated automatically according to subject status 
    Manual focus (MF): Electronic rangefinder can be used
  • AF-area mode
    9, 21 or 39 point Dynamic-area AF 
    Auto-area AF 
    Single-point AF 
    3D-tracking (39 points)
  • Focus Lock
    Focus can be locked by pressing AE-L/AF-L button 
    Focus can be locked by pressing shutter-release button halfway (single-servo AF)
  • Focus Modes
    Auto AF-S/AF-C selection (AF-A) 
    Continuous-servo (AF-C) 
    Face-Priority AF available in Live View only and D-Movie only 
    Manual (M) with electronic rangefinder 
    Normal area 
    Single-servo AF (AF-S) 
    Wide area
  • Maximum Autofocus Areas/Points
  • Autofocus Sensitivity
    -1 to +19 EV (ISO 100, 20°C/68°F)
  • Autofocus Fine Tune
  • Built-in Flash
  • Flash Bracketing
    2 to 3 frames in steps of 1/3, 1/2, 2/3, 1 or 2 EV
  • Built-in Flash Distance
    39 ft. (ISO 100)
  • X-Sync Speed
  • Top FP High Speed Sync
    Up to 1/4000
  • Flash Control
    TTL: i-TTL flash control using 2,016-pixel RGB sensor are available with built-in flash and SB-910, SB-900, SB-700, or SB-400; i-TTL balanced fill-flash for digital SLR is used with matrix and center-weighting metering, standard i-TTL flash for digital SLR with spot metering
  • Flash Sync Modes
    Front-curtain sync (normal) 
    Rear-curtain sync 
    Red-Eye reduction 
    Red-Eye reduction with slow sync 
    Slow sync
  • Flash Compensation
    -3 to +1 EV in increments of 1/3, 1/2 or 1 EV
  • Flash-ready indicator
    Lights when built-in flash or optional flash unit such as SB-910, SB-900, SB-400, SB-80DX, SB-28DX or SB-50DX is fully charged
  • Accessory Shoe
  • Nikon Creative Lighting System (CLS)
    CLS Supported
  • White Balance
    Choose color temperature (2500K–10000K) 
    Direct Sunlight 
    Fluorescent (7 types) 
    Preset manual (up to 4 values can be stored) 
  • White Balance Bracketing
    2 or 3 exposures
  • Live View Shooting
    Photography Live View Mode 
    Movie Live View Mode
  • Live View Lens servo
    Autofocus (AF): Single-servo AF (AF-S); full-time-servo AF (AF-F) 
    Manual focus (MF)
  • Live View AF-area mode
    Face-priority AF 
    Wide-area AF 
    Normal-area AF 
    Subject-tracking AF
  • Live View Autofocus
    Contrast-detect AF anywhere in frame (camera selects focus point automatically when face-priority AF or subject-tracking AF is selected)
  • Live View Scene Auto Selector
    Auto mode 
    Auto (flash off) mode
  • Movie Metering
    TTL exposure metering using main image sensor
  • Movie Maximum recording time
    20 minutes at highest quality 
    29 minutes 59 seconds at normal quality
  • Movie File Format
  • Movie Video Compression
    H.264/MPEG-4 Advanced Video Coding
  • Movie Audio recording format
    Linear PCM
  • Movie
    HD 1,920x1,080 / 30 fps 
    HD 1,920x1,080 / 25 fps 
    HD 1,920x1,080 / 24 fps 
    HD 1,280x720 / 60 fps 
    HD 1,280x720 / 50 fps 
    HD 1,280x720 / 30 fps 
    HD 1,280x720 / 25 fps
  • Movie Audio
    Built-in microphone, monaural 
    External stereo microphone (optional)
  • Monitor Size
    3.2 in. diagonal
  • Monitor Resolution
    921,000 Dots
  • Monitor Type
    Wide Viewing Angle TFT-LCD
  • Monitor Angle of View
    170-degree wide-viewing angle
  • Monitor Adjustments
    Brightness, 5 levelsBrightness control using ambient brightness sensor
  • Virtual Horizon Camera Indicator
  • Playback Functions
    Auto Image Rotation 
    Full-Frame and Thumbnail (4, 9, or 72 images or calendar) 
    Histogram Display 
    Image Comment 
    Movie Playback 
    Movie Slideshow 
    Playback with Zoom 
  • In-Camera Image Editing
    Color Balance 
    Color Outline 
    Color Sketch 
    Distortion Control 
    Edit Movie 
    Filter Effects 
    Image Overlay 
    Miniature Effect 
    NEF (RAW) Processing 
    Perspective Control 
    Quick Retouch 
    Red-Eye Correction 
    Selective Color 
    Side-by-Side Comparison 
  • Image Comment
  • Interface
    Accessory Terminal: Remote Cord: MC-DC2 (available separately); GPS unit: GP-1 (available separately) 
    HDMI output: Type C mini-pin HDMI connector 
    Headphone Connector 
    Hi-speed USB 
    Stereo Microphone Input
  • Wi-Fi Functionality
    Eye-Fi Compatible 
    WU-1b Wireless Mobile Adapter
  • GPS
    GP-1 GPS unit 
    GP-1A GPS unit
  • Save/Load Camera settings
  • Total custom Settings
  • My Menu
    Yes with customization
  • Recent Settings
  • Supported Languages
    Brazilian Portuguese 
    Chinese (Simplified and Traditional) 
  • Date, Time and Daylight Savings Time Settings
  • World Time Setting
  • Battery / Batteries
    EN-EL15 Lithium-ion Battery
  • Battery Life (shots per charge)
    900 shots per charge (Battery Life) (CIPA)
  • AC Adapter
    EH-5b AC Adapter 
    Requires EP-5B Power Supply Connector
  • Battery Charger
    MH-25 Quick Charger
  • Tripod Socket
    1/4 in.
  • Approx. Dimensions
    Width: 5.6 in. (141mm)Height: 4.4 in. (113mm)Depth: 3.2 in. (82mm)
  • Approx. Weight
    42 oz. (760g)
    camera body only
  • Operating Environment
    0–40 °C (+32–104 °F)
  • Supplied Accessories

    • EN-EL15 Rechargeable Li-ion Battery
    • MH-25 Quick Charger
    • EG-D2 Audio Video Cable
    • UC-E15 USB Cable
    • BM-14 LCD Monitor Cover
    • DK-21 Rubber Eyecup
    • AN-DC8 Strap
    • DK-5 Eyepiece Cap
    • BF-1B Body Cap
    • BS-1 Accessory Shoe Cap
    • NikonView NX2 CD ROM

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