Beats me, but being a full frame prosumer camera it is really in a class of its own and the D700 name helps to differentiate it from Nikons other offerings. It may also reveal something about the future of the DX format (D400 > D500 > D600 > ?) but I'm merely speculating here.
>How does Nikon decide on the series #s? Why is it a D700 and >not a D400 or other number? Just curious. > >Muniini > >A Nikonian in Toronto
Just a guess, but the D70 was the small sized natural heir to the D1, just as the D700 is the smaller heir to the D3 throne.
I also get the idea that the "100's" are the pro-sumer line and with the "10s" as the consumer. I'd also agree that this leaves room to grow for the remainder of the pro-sumer DX line before the FX technology becomes the default standard due to the cost of the technology falling: D400/500/600
I'd guess they want to leave room for a DX-format 'D400' etc. The D700 UK list price is about double what the D300 is selling for, so there's plenty of room in the range for cameras at both levels at the moment.
#4. "RE: Why D700?" In response to Reply # 0 Tue 01-Jul-08 02:13 PM by Valentino
The model number sequence seems down right foolish. I have had these nits for about 25 years since my first job as a Applications Scientist with equipment. Product managers often get tied up in the present with little perspective for past and future and this always makes things confusing.
Why not D300F since it has the same technology of the "3" series. If we put a APS sensor in a larger pro body, that should be a D3x. And a densely packed FX sensor into a Pro body it should be a D3s (S for supersized). Or better, rename the D3 to D3f and a future 20+ mp FX sensor to D3fs.
If someone new to digital goes to a camera store and asks about the various options then things will quickly get confusing thinking a D700 is much better than a D300 just as it is natural to think a D300 is better than a D200. Common sense and consistency has just gone out the window. Abbott and Costello could make a great routine out of Nikon's model numbers including the double digit models like the D70 to D50. And why is the double digital models at the low end, the single digit (D1x. D2x..) at the high end and the sub-pro line like a D300 have three digits? So who's on first? Naturally
Albert J Valentino Nikonian Moderator Emeritus Vantage Point Images Mastery of Composition is the Key to Great Photography
Just treat the model designations as names and don't try to make anything of the numbers therein. I guess Nikon could use animal names ("announcing the new Nikon 'Antelope' digital SLR"), but then someone would probably complain that they weren't following Linnaean taxonomy.
>If someone new to digital goes to a camera store and asks >about the various options then things will quickly get >confusing thinking a D700 is much better than a D300 just as >it is natural to think a D300 is better than a D200.
well, I fear the confusion in the shop stops latest when having a look at the price tags. and for those who then are still confused, nobody needs to bother, because they are in another customer league.
It all comes down to Nikon's heritage. With nearly 50 years since the F-mount came out, a lot of rationalisation has already gone on. The F1, F2, F3 were big bodied manual focus cameras. The F4, F5 and F6 were pro auto-focus cameras. The FM series were small bodied manual focus cameras. Nikon went through a wild series of different monikers for its consumer film cameras, but, as digital was kicking off, they had the F80 which was really a consumer camera, and the F100 which was adopted by many pros. Initially there were no consumer dSLRs, as the price was too high, so they stuck with the x00 moniker for F100 style cameras (although, in fact, the body of the D100 was more like the body of the F80), and x for large body pro cameras. As they already had a history of x0 consumer cameras, they stuck with that when they introduced the D70, as it chimed nicely with the F80.
Nikon could have gone with letter number combinations, like the FM2, FM3a, etc, but chose to stick with D for the digital series. This, at least, is a rationalisation of earlier systems. They could have called the D700 the D3000, but that would have probably looked very old fashioned (remember in the '90s when loads of things were called the '2000', and then followed by '3000', '4000', etc?). If they'd called it the D400, then that would have created an instant market expectation of the imminent release of the D4, and would also have told everyone that the D300 is obsolete, which it isn't.
Faced with so many intractables, D700 doesn't sound like a bad choice.