This is not a photograph…

... Its a frame grab off the Canon 5D Mark II's 1080p video, under some of the worst light you can imagine - Click for full size. Any noise you see there was added by me to spoil the perfectness. Canon EF 85 1.8.

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Nikon D400 rumor

So, even though this is unofficial in my part of the world, a Russian magazine had an article on an upcoming Nikon D400, a successor to the popular and coveted Nikon D300.

I’ve read a Danish translation of the article that listed these specs:

14.3MP CMOS
ISO 100-6400
Up to 7 frames pr second (probably in crop mode?).
And video in 1080p, 24FPS.

The video part is interesting, because not only is it 1080p, like in the Canon 5D II, but Nikon also seems to have listened to the critics of the Canon 5D IIs 30FPS video, and implemented the more ‘movie like’ 24FPS video mode.

The camera will take UDMA CF cards, and has an LCD with 922.000 pixels, which automatically dims and brightens depending on ambient light.

Price is anyones guess, but in Russia, it will list for around US$2000 (supposedly, cameras are more expensive in Russia compared to the US).

Nikon D3X announced

As you may know by now, Nikon announced its new flagship camera, the Nikon D3X, on December 1.

As soon as the news broke, official Nikon sites across the world were bogged down and became unavaliable. However today this situation has been resolved.

Nikon D3X

Here’s the salivation inducing data:

  • Nikon FX-format CMOS image sensor with 24.5 effective megapixels
  • Exceptional noise control from ISO 100 to ISO 1600
  • Fast 14-bit A/D conversion incorporated onto the image sensor for high signal-to-noise ratio and low power consumption
  • Nikon’s EXPEED image-processing system, utilizing a supremely powerful CPU with 16-bit image processing
  • Near-instantaneous shutter release time lag of approx. 0.04 second
  • 5-frames-per-second continuous shooting in FX format and 7 fps in DX crop mode
  • 51-point Multi-CAM3500FX autofocus system
  • Scene Recognition System for more accurate AF, AE, and AWB results
  • Active D-Lighting for complete control over highlight and shadow detail
  • Picture Control: Standard, Vivid, Neutral and Monochrome (Landscape, Portrait and D2x Modes I, II and III are available free via download)
  • Live View mode for shooting handheld and with a tripod
  • High-resolution (approx. 920k dots), 3-inch VGA-size LCD monitor with tempered glass
  • Durable, lightweight magnesium-alloy construction and comprehensive weather sealing against dust and moisture
  • Intelligent power management that lets you shoot up to approx. 4,400 frames on a single battery charge
  • (From Nikons website)

    I must say that the sample images I’ve seen so far (shot in controlled environments by highly skilled photographers) rank amongst the best image quality currently available in a DSLR – the files frankly looks like medium format digital, with very crisp detail, great colors and exceptional tonal range. When that’s all said, Nikon has priced its new flagship at $8000. Thats eight thousand dollars. The Sony A900, based on a very similar chip, is priced below $3000 and so is the Canon 5D Mark II.

    Read all about the Nikon D3X, view sample images at Nikons site

    David Michauds 5D Mark II video

    Here’s another teaser video shot with a Canon 5D Mark II.

    Many photographers whine about the video feature of this camera – ‘We don’t need no stinkin’ video’ – ‘Video is for consumer cams’ etc. etc.

    I believe these people are in a dark hole. Stop being conservative and start being creative!

    I don’t have much video experience (yet!), but I know that a video chip of this size is any videographers wet dream. Couple that with the ability to use Canon L glass and you’ve got a mean video machine, with certain shortcomings ofcourse (AF being one), but many more advantages.

    David Michaud has posted a new video recorded with the 5D Mark II. Take a look.

    Strangest camera of the week

    Carl Zeiss has recently announced this strange cross-breed of a camera and a spotting scope, the PhotoScope 85 T* FL.

    The Carl Zeiss PhotoScope 85 T* FL

    The Carl Zeiss PhotoScope 85 T* FL

    Intended for sportsshooters, birdwatchers and… private detectives?, this beast features a zoom range of 15-45x (600–1800mm in 35mm equivalence), in one handy camera / lens combination. I’m pretty sure theres a market out there for this one, but to me it just seems… Strange.

    Available spring / summer 2009.

    Vincent Laforet’s 5D Mark II video

    Vincent Laforet, famous PJ, was lucky enough to get his hands on a pre-production model of the new 21MP Canon EOS 5D Mark II camera. He had it in his possession less than 72 hours, but he still managed to produce a short movie (less than 2 minutes, costing him $5000 – not counting gear) that has since made the rounds all over the internet. Why was this movie so hyped? – Because there’s nothing hotter in the Photography bizz today than the merger of still picture and movie technology in SLR class bodies. And the 5D Mark II delivers 1080p HD quality at 30 frames per second for up to 4GB a clip – at unprecedented high ISOs, and for the price point ($2699 body only in the USA. Europeans get the pleasure of paying the same amount in Pound Sterling) unprecedented image quality. The movie after the jump is scaled to a quarter of the original size – the original footage would quite simply be to large to meet the bandwidth demand.

    You’ve got to give it to him – he knows his timing (Photokina, 5D II launch), and he managed to get the most out of the beast in the short time he had it in his hands. Especially considering he claims to have no prior videography experience!

    Vincents Reverie, filmed with a Canon 5D Mark II + a lot of top Canon glass.