Who knows what areas the the "D4" will improve over the D3s. And who knows when it will come out.
Can the D3s be improved? Sure, everythign can. What would I want?
Lower noise at higher ISO. The upper part of the ISO range is not all that useful.
Lighter weight. It is a heavy camera especially with most of the newer FX compatible lenses.
Anti-smudge coating on the LCD screen. All cameras could use this!
Accurate Virtual Horizon. Mine is off by enough that you notice, but it isn't worth sending it in to have it fixed.
More MP with no degredation of image quality or reduction in performance. 16 or 24 Mp would be nice to have, especially when cropping.
So, once the D3s replacement comes out, it will certainly have some improvements, otherwise there is no point. If you want to wait, go ahead, but who knows how long the wait will be, or what you will be getting. Otherwise, if you have a need and can fill it now, buy a D3s knowing full well a better camera is coming someday.
With no reliable information on the D4, how could anyone possibly make a rational decision?
I'd rent a D3s for the wedding and then worry about it after the D4 breaks cover.
I will point out that almost nobody had any reliable prediction on what the D3 would be. And it blew everyone away. It's more or less the same folks who are doing the D4, so I'd give a few months to sort out.
_____ Brian... a bicoastal Nikonian and Team Member
My gallery is online. Comments and critique welcomed any time!
Wed 06-Jul-11 11:39 AM | edited Wed 06-Jul-11 04:31 PM by RRRoger
>With no reliable information on the D4, how could anyone >possibly make a rational decision? > >I'd rent a D3s for the wedding and then worry about it after >the D4 breaks cover.
The D4 should be unveiled in late August. You can be sure that Nikon will surprise us with at least a new processor and AF system. I expectulate a low (12-16) megapixel version for photo-journalist & sports and a X version (24-32) for Studio. You probably won't be able to get one until next February anyway. The used D3s will drop substantially in price within days of the announcement. I too would rent now and wait.
Just to avoid misleading members, it should be pointed out that the above post - like everything else currently being posted about a "D4" - is simply speculation. No-one outside Nikon knows when a D3 replacement will arrive, or what its specification will be.
My opinion is: The D4 really is worth waiting for. "The D4 should be unveiled in late August". News always seems to leak out a few days before a big trade show. PMA 2011 is Sept 8-10 and it is right on the 4 year Nikon D1-4 cycle. Perhaps (speculation) there will be at least a prototype that we can see there. At any rate you would be lucky to get one before next year. However, old models especially used nearly always take a big drop in price. So, September might be a good time to pick up a D3,s, or x.
I think that Mick has pretty much so covered it all. Assuming that you can find a D3S in this market, it's not going to become obsolete any time soon. It's more camera than I will ever need and I will probably never replace it. I disagree with Mick about the high end ISO since I use it all of the time and am very satisfied with the results. I have let my ISO float to Hi .3 on many occassions and like what I see. It's probably not ideal for those weddings that you shoot.
As for waiting for the D4, that could be a long wait given the Japanese earthquake and and Tsunami. I'm only guessing, but I would not be surprised if D3S production has already been halted and that the next camera out of Japan will, in fact, be the D4. But, who knows when it will hit these shores and at what price.
I'm not so sure it is worth any sort of wait. The D3s may end up as the new D4 backup for quite a while. The D3s will be a strong camera for quite some time. Not until we get to 24MP as standard will the D3s be seen as getting old in my opinion. It is a pro body with great features and capabilities. The D3 still is as well for almost every situation.
I say rent one as well and see if the announcement makes your mouth water but rest assured it will be pricier than the D3s and who knows if the D3s will even drop much if is the backup to the D4. At that point you might want to consider the D3 which has been dropping in price and is still better than what you have today.
From runours- 2 more stops of ISO would be great, and so would an 18M pixel sensor. But to me the "killer add-on" would be wi-fi. Just can't justify $800 for the wt4a (or ???). And the eye-fi doesn't work with compact flash...
I shoot a D700 (amongst others). I've had the money stashed for a D3s since the first of the year, but decided to wait. I'm still gonna wait. And, if the August release-date proves correct, that's only two months away... --M--
I totally agree with you. I figure that if they announce the D4 in August, that it should probably be available by February or March of 2012, on a limited basis of course, and that it shouldn't cost more than about $6,000.00. In the meantime, I am having an absolutely great time with my D3S and will deal with the "nicer" camera in a year or two.
>I really want to get the D3s for the wedding and an up-coming state level youth gymnastics competition. If you have enough business lined up why not get it - and make some money now? When the D4 comes out it is likely to launch at about 30% more than the street price of a D3s, with early allocation to Nikon registered pro users and long back orders. If you make some extra money now and sell the D3s well when the D4 comes out you will not loose much money, and may earn more than you loose on a possible upgrade. Back to 16 MP (it might be 18) to double sensor resolution (ignoring any better processing gain) you need to go from 12MP to 48MP - 16 MP has more cropping potential than 12 MP but the difference is not huge.
Photography is a bit like archery. A technically better camera, lens or arrow may not hit the target as often as it could if the photographer or archer does not practice enough.
Like all technology at some point you have to take the plunge and stand the loss (if any). Personally if the D3s is currently good enough for your purposes right now then get it, use it, learn all about it and enjoy it.
From the various rumors I've seen it would be a D4 announcement in August, not a D4 release. Typically the announcement precedes the release by several months. Couple that with the distribution system, I'd guess that an August-announced D4 wouldn't be generally available until sometime in 2012.
If your wedding is in July, you might consider trying to get the D3s. It would make a fine backup for the D4 when you can get one, assuming the D4 specs are better for the purposes you want to use it.
Worth the wait for me? Absolutely. I wish to get something that improves on the D3, and the D3s doesn't do it for me. The D3x is unusable for me due to (A) price, (B) ISO performance and (C) shooting speed. Unusable as a wedding camera for me in most situations.
I need a few more megapixels for larger portraits. Having something in the 16-18 MP range with the ISO of the D3s, or even just the D3, would be great for me.
I love my D3. I just want a D3 with a few more MP's.
I'm preparing to purchase a D4 in January or February, assuming it's available by then.
-------------------------- Rick Paul Tucson, Arizona
It all depends on your particular timetable and requirements. Since the rumored specs of the D4 are nothing more than speculation you have to take them with a grain of salt. Will Nikon increase the MP at the cost of high ISO performace like the competition? We will have to wait for the D4 to be introduced to find out for sure. The one thing we can count on is an increase in price. If you need what the D3S offers, get one and don't look back. If you are getting good results, continue with your current gearand wait for the D4. Good Luck and Enjoy your Nikons!
>Will Nikon increase the MP at the cost of high ISO performace like >the competition? We will have to wait for the D4 to be >introduced to find out for sure. >The one thing we can count on is an increase in price.
Anything affecting the high ISO performance would be the one feature that would prevent me from jumping on a D4. This would be my first pro body. I almost bought a D3S when they declined to only $4500 here in Canada in February but then the tsunami hit and forgedaboudit. I like Mick's idea of a lighter body, maybe that carbon fibre body rumour will come true.
I expect cost will be more than the current D3S but less than the D3X (I hope), but I have some decent savings set aside already and am going to sell one lens and one camera this summer and that should bring me up to speed. I think I'm going to phone my local dealer and get on the D4 pre-order list - they are getting used to me pre-ordering cameras that don't exist yet
I am hoping that when the D4 is finally released the price of the D3s drops a few hundred dollars and I can pick one up before they disappear! Best price I have found in Canada currently is just over $4800. The other option would be the new "D800". I definitely want to add a full frame, FX body to my current system.
Regarding the viewing screen on Nikon cameras ... I had a ZAGG invisible shield installed on my D300. It is specifically designed to fit the D300 (They make one for the D3 and most other Nikon models). I love it ... gives my screen total protection and does not effect the clarity of the screen at all (developed for the military it is very tough ... almost impossible to scratch). The "kit" also includes protection for the top screen.
Yes, the D3S is down to $4,799 in one place (The Camera Store). My local dealer has 3 D3S in stock and will match them. Very tempting let me tell you Sigh, I'll wait and continue to shoot my D700 for now, I don't want to buy the D3S now so late in the product cycle. Since the D700 is so good I can cope and I'd rather be an early adopter on the new model. My whole strategy was that I was going to sell my D700 to become a D700S early adopter, but that never happened. If Nikon had just been clear that no D700S was going to be offered, I would have found a way to jump on the D3S bandwagon a couple years ago. But for me given all the time that has passed now, I might as well wait and get my first Dn-sized body. I do have every expectation the D4 price is going to be in the 1D X range. So I'm going to use the additional time to salt away further funds for the expected D4 price premium.
The rumored 36mp D800 also sounds like a great tool - I believe that spec is correct and it is also just a matter of time for the D800 announcement too. It would be great for Nikon to have a high mp, video capable, lower priced body than the D3X! I'm planning to get one after I've digested the D4 purchase. So my goal now is a kit consisting of a D4/D800 (and a DX body). Because of that, it doesn't make sense for me to cycle a D3S in and then back out of my kit within a short 12-15 month period. I don't mind cycling cameras through my kit if they play a longer role such as 2-3 years (or even 4). My mistake was the D700S expectation that I had - if it weren't for that I could have had a D3S for 2-3 years prior to the D4 being available and that would have been justifiable.
Although the D1-3 cameras are too heavy for me to hold 8 hours, I would have a D3s if the Video was better.
I now "speculate" that the D4 announcement will be just before the January 10-13 PMA Trade show and it will be displayed there.
It "could" have an increased MegaPixel (12-18) Sensor, Two Expeed III processors, More on-board memory, Higher, cleaner ISO, Improved (Phase/Contrast) AutoFocus, HD 1080P Video at 60fps, Much lighter Carbon Fibre Body.
I had planned to hold off on the Dxx purchase until the D4 arrived, but with contract stuff to shoot in low light, I bought 2 D3s cams last month.
After shooting the D3s for real this past weekend, I can tell you what I *hope* the D4 brings to the table.
1. The metering and color accuracy of my D7000. That thing is A-MAZING.
2. 1-2 stops of clean ISO performance.
3. Better placement of the AF-On / shutter release in the vertical grip.
4. Slightly better focus performance, but really the D3s is good enough for my current needs.
5. Just a wish really, but I would LOVE if Nikon could find a way to allow the selected focus points to "cache" for both horizontal and vertical orientation. So that when I quickly need to change from Horizontal to Vertical or vice versa, I don't have to re-do my focal point. When shooting volleyball or soccer this is a HUGE PITA.
6. Please give me at least 18MP. My $800 Canon T2i gives me that. My $1200 D7000 gives me 16. I'd really like my $5000 camera(s) to at least match that.
I recall clearly when you and others here (Tommie, Brian) made the jump and you made a great decision
I am in the midst of processing a huge low light event from my D700 and it was pushed to the limit the entire time. I used Auto-ISO to 5000, f2.8, and minimum SS 1/320 but at times the D700 dropped down to 1/160 or even less. It would have been ideal to dial in 12,800 on the D3S!
Steve, there are a few 'interesting' guys on a couple of forums which are thinking Jan. for sure and even more, not so secret, references (no specifics unfortunately) to field testing. So January announcement but in shops????
What is interesting is that no one is talking about a D400! Having the D3S I really would want to see what a D300s replacement has to offer before going for a D800 or D4. Cheers, Tom
Sat 10-Dec-11 11:20 AM | edited Sat 10-Dec-11 07:59 PM by km6xz
The rumor frequency has peaked again concerning the D4 so if that is any indication based on history we know two things, one is that it will be out before the Olympics and two, no one will have it pegged. The D7000 rumors were frequent but until a week or so before announcing it, no one expected the level of performance it had. You are right, the D400 rumors have fallen off the map after the 36mpx rumors. The announcement for the D4 should be pretty soon even if production quantities are not in the pipeline for months because a lot of sports pros are needing to make plans now for equipment and budgets, if there is no word soon they will be locked into getting nothing if not added to the budget now. I was very interested in getting a D3s after getting to play with one soon after it was released. To that end I started a change jar where I threw all change and small bills into when emptying my pockets. It got me most of the way to one but ended up using it to buy a bunch of lenses. It is amazing how much pocket change adds up to if saved and stored away safety without dipping into. I put the D3s out of mind, especially after getting a D7000 but suddenly this week an unexpected modest inheritance is coming my way as soon as some legal processes complete. So I am suddenly quite curious about the D4 and a couple more lenses like a 24 1.4. The timing will be just about right. I will be back in the States for most of January so will likely get the 24 and hope for an announcement that will either free up some used d3s's or be motivation to wait until production gets up to speed on the D4. Stan St Petersburg Russia
Hi Tommie, A D4 announcement in January would be GREAT! Like Stan says, with a D4 announcement then photographers would at least know whether what is coming suits their needs and/or they can peel off and get a D3S. I have never seen a used D3S on the local market but depending on what the D4 parameters are I am not completely ruling a used or even new D3S out. I hope the January scuttlebutt about a D4 announcement comes to fruition!
I agree I don't know why all went quiet on the D400 front? I have many questions about the D400 sensor which basically centre around whether low light can be improved over and above what my D7000 already does. If not then I won't rush to prioritize a D400. In my dreams it would be a Nikon sensor with on-sensor PDAF and low-light equivalent to a D700 (Hah then I would get two).
I always really liked Stan's cookie jar approach, great idea and glad to hear he and I may soon be joining the D3S or D4 crowd after a long wait.
With that big CES show in January, it has crossed my mind Nikon could do a triple-play D4, D800, D400 announcement. I realize they don't normally do announcements in this manner but the last year has been an extraordinary time for Nikon.
Hot off the Nikon rumors site, FWIW...let the speculations begin again!
I was able to collect some specs from several sources for the upcoming Nikon D4 camera. The rating on those specs is 90% which means this is the real deal with maybe some small details being wrong possibly due to wrong translation.
Nikon D4 specs:
16.2 MP 11 fps 100-102,400 native ISO range, expandable to 50 and 204,800 CF + XQD memory card slots! That's right, the Nikon D4 will have the new Compact Flash XQD memory card slot.
Compatible with the new Nikon WT-5 wireless transmitter Integrated Ethernet in the camera
Face detection/recognition function that will be working in the viewfinder (maybe some type of a hybrid viewfinder? Nikon had several related patents)
Improved video, I have no other details on that but my guess is 1080p/30/25/24 and 720p/60/30/25/24 similar to the Nikon D800
Uncompressed video out through the HDMI port
Ability to assign the two buttons on the front of the camera to smooth aperture control during video recording
Improved 51 AF points
AF detection range will go down to EV-2.0 (the D3s went to EV -1)
Autofocus system: 9 cross-type sensors that are operational up to f/8
The Nikon D4 is clearly made to compete with the Canon EOS 1Dx. I will stay conservative on the announcement date, but there is a very good chance that the Nikon D4 will be announced right before or during the PMA show in Las Vegas (January 10-13, 2012).
Might be a great compromise between the D3S and the D7000??
Noted however the amplitude issues with higher pixel count, the D3S is magnificent at 12mp, so we shall see, but the uncompressed video, is an important (conditional) bell and whistle, and after all Sony makes the sensors for Canon and Nikon, it could be h.444 correct?
I plan on buying a D3s in spring this year, and then a D4 around the same time the following (or when available). If that D4 as good in low light as they speculate...I gotta have it. My D3 has served me well....but it's move up time soon.....first the D3s and then the new "bad boy" !
Shooting wildlife, I'm more than happy with my D300, but I could do with better low light performance. Winters are dark here in the UK, even when the sun's out! Even, if the D4 has a higher pixel count, if doesn't have the same or better high ISO performance as the D3S, then I will be after a D3S. Hopefully pick one up cheap as prices drop
Sun 25-Dec-11 12:54 PM | edited Sun 25-Dec-11 01:28 PM by RRRoger
>Shooting wildlife, I'm more than happy with my D300, but I >could do with better low light performance. Winters are dark >here in the UK, even when the sun's out! >Even, if the D4 has a higher pixel count, if doesn't have the >same or better high ISO performance as the D3S, then I will be >after a D3S. Hopefully pick one up cheap as prices drop
If the performance of the D3s is better than the D4, you won't pick up one cheap!
Why don't we all meet at the CES/PMA Nikon booth in January and get "Hands On" what is new?