Here is Nikon's Official List of Changes in v1.10:
Modifications enabled with upgrade of A and B firmware from Ver. 1.03 to Ver. 1.10
* The Highlights playback display option has been moved from Display mode>Basic photoinfo>Highlights in the playback menu to Display mode>Detailed photoinfo>Highlights.
* The size and color of “Demo” displayed in the monitor with playback when No memory card? in the Custom Settings is set to Enable release, have been modified.
* The range of settings available for ISO sensitivity settings>ISO sensitivity autocontrol>Minimum shutter speed in the shooting menu has been increased from 1/250–1 s to 1/4000–1 s.
* When shooting in hand-held live view mode and the frame is magnified prior to autofocusing, operation has been modified so that display returns to the magnified display rather than full-frame display.
* Images captured with Rotate tall, in the playback menu, set to On are not automatically rotated for display immediately after capture (image review).
* Recent settings can now be displayed in place of My Menu.
* Custom Setting e3 Flash cntrl for built-in flash (e3 Optional flash when an optional Speedlight is mounted on the camera) can now be added to My Menu using the Add items option in My Menu from Add items>Custom settingmenu>e Bracketing/flash.
* The degree of the High ISO NR setting can now be confirmed in the shooting info display while the High ISO NR setting item, in the shooting menu, is being applied.
* Ankara, Riyadh, Kuwait, and Manama have been added to the Time zone options for the World time item in the setup menu.
* When a GPS device is used and no heading information is available, ---.--° is now displayed for the Position>Heading option in the GPS item in the setup menu.
* When shooting in live view mode using Camera Control Pro 2 (Ver. 2.2.0 or later) with a PC-E lens, the aperture setting can now be adjusted from the computer.
* Focus acquisition performance in dynamic-area AF mode has been improved.
* Focus acquisition performance with contrast-detect AF has been improved.
* Auto white balance performance has been improved.
* The fourth digit in seconds display for GPS latitude and longitude information is now rounded off rather than omitted.
* The current MB-D10 battery type setting can now be confirmed in the shooting info display when R6/AA-size batteries are used with the Multi-Power Battery Pack MB-D10.
* An issue that caused an increase in noise with shooting in exposure mode at a shutter speed setting of bulb with the shutter held open for less than 8 seconds and Long exp. NR enabled has been resolved.
* An issue that prevented shutter release at the specified shutter speed when no operations were performed for 30 seconds in mirror up mode has been resolved.
* An issue that caused abnormal image display when Image review was set to On and the playback zoom in button was pressed immediately after shooting at the following settings has been resolved. o Image quality: NEF (RAW ) + JPEG o NEF (RAW) recording: Lossless compressed or Compressed o Image size: S or M
* When the Speedlight SB-800 was mounted on the camera with flash mode set to distance-priority manual (GN) mode, and the camera recovered from standby mode triggered by the auto meter off function, the distance information displayed on the SB-800 changed. This issue has been resolved.
For further information regarding the new firmware, download the supplemental document for the new firmware, D300_FirmUp_(11)En.pdf. Adobe’s Acrobat Reader must be installed on your computer to view this file.
"Something really clever or profound should go here...I have nothing "
>A question about upgrading the firmware : will the custom >settings and the shooting bank settings get lost while >upgrading ?
I saw a small change in stored settings after firmware update:
It seems that the camera stores Auto ISO shutter speed limit by its position in the menu, not the actual value. Now that the menu contains additional shutter speed options, the selected shutter speed limit is not the same as before.
So check Auto ISO shutter speed limits in each shooting menu bank and correct them!
Rotate Tall (User’s Manual, pg. 251; Quick Guide, pg. 24) Because the camera itself is already in the appropriate orientation during shooting, images are not rotated automatically during image review, even when On is selected for Rotate tall.
I thought the whole point of making this selection is to have the images rotated????
I have read this several times and it still isn't clear exactly what they are talking about.
If you are using the camera in portrait mode for an extended period, perhaps on a tripod, it is convenient to have the images display on the rear monitor without being rotated. But you do want them to rotate automatically when viewing later on a computer, so turning Rotate Tall off is unhelpful.
>I quite like this change. > >If you are using the camera in portrait mode for an extended >period, perhaps on a tripod, it is convenient to have the >images display on the rear monitor without being rotated. But >you do want them to rotate automatically when viewing later on >a computer, so turning Rotate Tall off is unhelpful.
I have always done it the way you describe, prior to this update. Rotate Tall Off and Auto Image Rotate On. So I too am still unclear as to what this update changed.
Edit TWO: Maybe I get it now. To quote the update:
"Images captured with Rotate tall, in the playback menu, set to On are not automatically rotated for display immediately after capture (image review)."
Now I get it. When you shoot it pops up right away for the initial image review UN-rotated even if you have 'Rotate Tall' on. But when you use the playback button they are rotated.
I had a problem with the firmware from the link above and found a solution that I thought to share. The "B" version of the firmware wouldn't update on my D300. See below:
I downloaded the D300 firmware update v1.10 from the first link that was posted (topic #141980) and after running the executable, a folder was created named "D300Update" with the two files: A3000110.bin B3000110.bin
I used two freshly formatted (in camera) Sandisk extreme IV cards and put "A" in the root folder of one and "B" in the root folder of the other and followed the instructions exactly.
In camera, "A" updated fine, but "B" kept kicking me back to the menu and wouldn't update. I tried everything, different cards, etc. Finally, I came back to the board for answers and noticed that Nikon USA had posted the files for update, as well. Downloaded the file from Nikon USA and extracted the zip file which contained a folder named "D300Update" with the two files: A3000110.bin B3000110.BIN
Copied B3000110.BIN to my CF card, put it in the camera and it updated fine. I don't know if it was just the weird filename with "BIN" in all caps that made the difference, but I suspect so.
Regardless, it worked. If anyone can't get "B" to update it's worth a try...
Just wondering -- does anyone know why Nikon asks USA users to register a user name with a password to get the file, while if we follow the Asia link we can simply download the file w/o any registration?
Is there a difference between the files? What's the point?
The need to enter passwords may rest in whether you have set up the system to remember login info. for that site. When I downloaded the upgrade I needed to select the download button twice, as the system took me to Knowledge Base (or whatever that title is) and then automatically went ahead and did the download after selecting the download again.
Nikon USA will only allow certain downloads to users with registered Nikon USA cameras, no gray markets. This also applies to printable documentation. Once registered and having your computer remember your userid and password, you will not be prompted until the site does some serious maintenance.
Each area distributor maybe independent from Nikon and set their own rules.
>It looks to me like the AWB as really been improved! > >Now the dilemma do you leave it on AWB 100% or do you still >use the other setting such as sunny, clouds, shade...etc??? > >Opinions?
Although I've only shot a little following this update, I agree it sure seems that AWB is better, at least in my house. The few that I snapped last night were just inside the house, under normal household lamps. Don't have a A/B test, but it looked good. Looking forward to shooting more to confirm, but so far so good. I was kind of struck by how close it was to how I see the scene. Maybe not 100% accurate, but pleasing.
It'll be interesting to see if there's improvement in daylight shots using AWB. I haven't shot any daylight stuff with it yet, so can't say.
>This is one I've been waiting for... > >The range of settings available for ISO sensitivity settings >> ISO sensitivity auto control > Minimum shutter speed >in the shooting menu has been increased from 1/250 - 1s to >1/4000 - 1s. >
Long lens shooters rejoice! I've been waiting years, and two camera bodies, for this one!
As an aside, I don't ever remember so many substantive changes introduced with a firmware update. Way to go, Nikon! They apparently are listening to us, and maybe even listened to all my nastygrams about the too low minimum shutter speed on auto iso
>>This is one I've been waiting for... >> >>The range of settings available for ISO sensitivity >settings >>> ISO sensitivity auto control > Minimum shutter >speed >>in the shooting menu has been increased from 1/250 - 1s >to >>1/4000 - 1s. >> > >Long lens shooters rejoice! I've been waiting years, and two >camera bodies, for this one! > >As an aside, I don't ever remember so many substantive changes >introduced with a firmware update. Way to go, Nikon! They >apparently are listening to us, and maybe even listened to all >my nastygrams about the too low minimum shutter speed on auto >iso > >Neil
I agree. This is almost like a D300s version as far as I am concerned. A big improvement in the camera if everything works as advertised, esp the minimum shutter speed.
**Never fall in love with anything that can't love you back.**
>This is one I've been waiting for... > >The range of settings available for ISO sensitivity settings >> ISO sensitivity auto control > Minimum shutter speed >in the shooting menu has been increased from 1/250 - 1s to >1/4000 - 1s. > >THANK YOU Nikon...It's about time!!!
Agreed! When I complained this wasn't in 1.03 (after it had been changed in an update for D3) I was called a complainer and told I shouldn't expect an $1800 camera to operate like a $5000 camera. I of course disagreed. All I wanted was a thoughtful implementation of auto-ISO.
So I went out shooting BIFs yesterday after the update. First thing, auto-ISO in aperture priority has gone from useless to outstanding! Previously I'd shoot Manual auto-ISO with shutter speed set depending on the lighting conditions, aperture as small as I thought I could get away with. Now, I can select aperture for DOF and let the camera take care of the rest. The difference? Previously I'd set f/7.1 and decide shutter should be around 1/1000". If I had a white bird go into a bright sunlight, I'd overexpose. Yesterday I'd get shutter speeds around 1/1600" for white birds in the sun and 1/800" (my set min) for darker birds. I'm quite happy with this.
For AF aquisition and accuracy, I did have dynamic AF follow a jackrabbit zig-zagging in similarly colored grass. The AF bracket moved right with the rabbit, which was amazing. Accuracy might be better, but difficult to say.
I did have one issue. Normally I tie AF to AF-on only, but since BIFs are always tracking with the shutter button down anyway, my BIF shooting bank I have AF tied to shutter and AF-on, but AF didn't seem to be activated by the shutter release button (AF-on worked). I went to the setting, switched it to AF-on only, then back, and then AF worked correctly.
My only nit, I wish the min shutter setting could be placed in My Menu.
The big problem I had with Auto ISO in manual exposure mode is that I had to be very careful not to let the exposure go below the minimum ISO, otherwise the camera over exposes because it hits a wall. In theory that is not a big deal and just requires some thought as to where to set the "baseline" exposure. In practice, I found I was doing almost as much exposure tinkering to end run this problem as I did without using Auto ISO, which was self defeating. Plus, I'm locked into what I consider a minimum acceptable exposure, as I mentioned in another post.
Auto ISO aperture priority is a wonderful thing with adequate minimum shutter speed options. It thinks almost exactly as I do, and does almost what I would do given the time to set the exposure. Auto-anything doesn't get much better than that
If you were a "complainer", you had good company . I hope Nikon doesn't get to the point where they differentiate product by the range of menu options such as this one. I think $3000 is a lot to pay for a couple extra menu options .
Can anyone tell if Nikon fixed the problem with the red auto-assist focus on the SB800 not working with the D300 at over 200mm lens focal lengths was corrected?
Currently when I pop a TCE on my 70-200, I lose the flash AF assist light capability. So I have to use a flash light in these situations (for example to illuminate and then AF on a perched owl at night).
Best regards, SteveK My Nikonians gallery 'A camera is an instrument that teaches people how to see without a camera.' -- Dorothea Lange
AF seems to be substantially improved, particularly from an accuracy standpoint. In a cursory examination after updating, the primary focal point seems to be right in the middle of the focus indicator rectangle. Previously it was just at the lower edge or even slightly below the rectangle. While I only tried short focal distance images tonight, it's much better than previously in this situation. I'll do some more extensive testing during daylight when I get a chance. But for now, it looks like this update is a substantial improvement in many ways!
OldPhotos "If everyone possesses some measure of this intangible quality called creativity, photography is unprecedented as an outlet for its expression." - Ansel Adams
>"Recent settings can now be displayed in place of My >Menu." > >I've downloaded & installed the FW, but I cannot see how >this feature is deployed. > >Anyone got any ideas?
I don't have a D300 with me now, but if you go to the bottom of My Menu (or simply press up once from the top of the menu), you've got a new menu choice which you can use to choose between My Menu and Recent Settings menu.
>In a cursory examination after updating, >the primary focal point seems to be right in the middle of the >focus indicator rectangle. Previously it was just at the lower >edge or even slightly below the rectangle.
I find it almost impossible to believe that physical position of the AF sensors would have been changed due to firmware update.
Under copyright information in the menu there is a place to type in the name of the artist , but what do i put in under copyright? Does a name go there , and I would assume that would be the same as artist. Confused?
>Under copyright information in the menu there is a place to >type in the name of the artist , but what do i put in under >copyright? >Does a name go there , and I would assume that would be the >same as artist. Confused?
I would assume that it's possible that the copyright holder is not the same as the artist (the photographer). For example, the copyright holder could be the company the photog is working for.
>Under copyright information in the menu there is a place to >type in the name of the artist , but what do i put in under >copyright? >Does a name go there , and I would assume that would be the >same as artist. Confused?
####, can't find it now. I printed a PDF file from the site yesterday maybe it was nikonrumors.com. These were updates to the User Guide pages. It recommended putting your name for Artist and Company name for Copyright holder. They also mentioned that the field length for the two options were different. 36 characters for Artist name, 54 characters for copyright holder's name.
I was thinking the same thing about year , but you have to remember to change it before you use it in 2009. With my luck , it would be Mar. 2009 before I realize it. I guess no harm done if you forget .
>>In a cursory examination after updating, >>the primary focal point seems to be right in the middle of the >>focus indicator rectangle. Previously it was just at the lower >>edge or even slightly below the rectangle. >>
> >I find it almost impossible to believe that physical position >of the AF sensors would have been changed due to firmware >update. > >Matti
Consider this: Perhaps the software is doing a better job of zeroing in on the AF sensor (locating it more accurately).
Recent Settings: How do you get this to work? When I select this function, I only get one item: "Choose Tab." I made changes to my settings (as a test), but none of them appear in the list. BTW, I think the "My Menu" is more useful.
Fri 31-Oct-08 02:47 AM | edited Fri 31-Oct-08 02:53 AM by IntegrityPhotos
"I find it almost impossible to believe that physical position of the AF sensors would have been changed due to firmware update. Matti"
With the ability to fine tune specific lens' AF through menu settings, it seems to be easily within the ability of the internal computer to adjust the global AF settings in a variety of ways. As Bruce stated in post #32 that it may be a matter of more accurately identifying the AF point within the sensor. Since the AF mechanism relies on software drivers to function, it should be able to do more this and perhaps even more complex adjustments, depending on the inherent abilities of the system.
All I know is that the AF accuracy relevant to the focus indicator rectangle in the viewfinder became better in my D300. I was preparing to send this unit into Nikon Repair before the warranty expired since it was rather obviously "front focusing" in certain situations. This occurred where a foreground item was just below the focus indicator rectangle as in shooting wildlife with brush or grass just below the subject. The AF would often catch the foreground instead of the subject.
Now it is more accurate in it's AF point within the rectangle itself, instead of at the bottom edge or below it. As an example, I found that with the new software, while shooting through a tree where leaves surrounded the focus indicator rectangle, but were still outside of it, I was able to accurately focus on the subject in the distance beyond the tree, without the leaves causing a problem. Previously, I wouldn't have been able to do this without modifying where I was focusing. More testing to be done to positively confirm the change, but so far so good!!
OldPhotos "If everyone possesses some measure of this intangible quality called creativity, photography is unprecedented as an outlet for its expression." - Ansel Adams
>Recent Settings: How do you get this to work? When I select >this function, I only get one item: "Choose Tab." I >made changes to my settings (as a test), but none of them >appear in the list. BTW, I think the "My Menu" is >more useful. > >TIA...JL
I looked at this... Choosing the RC Tab, brings up the settings.. however at first it contains no settings, because you didn't have it set. With RC in place, it WILL therafter log the settings... which is fine. But if you still have My Menu selected the "RC" menu will not update.
This seems a bit pointless. As you say, "My Menu" is far more practical as an ongoing feature. Recent Settings needs to be workable with "My Menu" set, IMO.
I am glad someone else brought this up as I thought I was seeing things and thought no way!
I just finished the update. The first things I noticed was quicker AF and better high iso performance. With the iso I had to check a few images to confirm but the images do seem cleaner with out a doubt, I was shooting at 1600. Could be just what I am shooting here in my home office though. I am going to keep my eye on it for sure.
This is one I've been waiting for... > >The range of settings available for ISO sensitivity settings >> ISO sensitivity auto control > Minimum shutter speed >in the shooting menu has been increased from 1/250 - 1s to >1/4000 - 1s. > >THANK YOU Nikon...It's about time!!!
I cant wait to get out and enjoy this new feature. Thanks for posting the update. I was pleasantly shocked to see another update so quicly.
I just downloaded the Firmware Version 1.10 update. I also have Firmware Versions 1.02 and 1.03 but have not installed them yet. My question is should I install those two versions before 1.10 or does 1.10 include the 2 previous versions.
I have used my D300+MB-D10 quite a bit since updating to 1.10. I have not seen the problem you describe- I am always on grip battery.
However, I have noticed a possible long term drain on the internal battery that is somewhat higher than I would expect. IOW, after a week or so of heavy use I might have 80-90% remaining on the internal battery even if the body was never shot without the grip. Around the 80% level I usually recharge the internal battery, otherwise I just leave it there in reserve.
When the situation occurs I have to remove the pack from the MB-D10 and re-insert it so that the camera will recognise it again.
It maybe that the camera is still using the grip but the top LCD does not show the BP symbol and like you say although the grip is attached the internal battery appears partially drained even after a short period of time.
Next time it happens I've going to have a look at the battery meter to see if it shows the grip, failing that I can always revert to 1.03
If it doesn't indicate that the grip battery is being used, you might try the grip's shutter button to see if that is recognized.
Just speculating, you might have a contact problem. Try cleaning the contacts on the grip and the body, with a good electronics contact cleaner. I would also try to swab some cleaner on the battery contacts and the contacts within the grip and/or the battery chamber cover. When things are intermittant like that, it is usually bad contacts. If you can, you might also try AA's and EN-EL3's in the grip since that might isolate the problem to a specific chamber cover.
I never had the DBS problem with my D300, but I had a peculiar problem with a specific lens and TC that was resolved with 1.03, I think (was that the 1st version that fixed DBS?). That problem has not recurred with 1.10 so my experiene is that the "DBS fix" may address other things, likely related to either bad contacts or other things that the camera does not like. Very speculative, of course, but at odds with your thinking that V1.10 is more sensitive to your problem. Again, just speculation.
I really hate intermittent problems as you never really know if it's been fixed. This problem was occurring every couple of hours when I first loaded 1.10, since re-installing 1.10 it every couple of days. However, saying that and thinking about my response I realised that I did take the grip off between reloading the FW so cleaning the contacts may be the solution.
This is probably no help to you, but I didn't get the grip until after I upgraded to 1.10 and I haven't had any issues except some strangeness with the plastic tray that the EN-EL3e- it wasn't seating correctly and sometimes it would recognize the battery, other times it wouldn't.
I just bent the plastic tab up a little bit and it has worked fine ever since.
I'm actually using AA's and thus the internal contacts are different. For the EL3's, the carrier uses a comb like contact at the rear of the tray whereas the AA's use two contacts on the top/rear of the tray. I have used EL3's and will try using the EL3 tray if the cleaning the contacts does nothing to improve the situation with AA's. One way or another I will get to the bottom of this.
I've cleaned the contacts now and the camera and grip are back together so it may be a few days before I know if it's worked.
It's really great to get so many suggestions to what appears to be a isolated issue.
I got the grip right before a Thanksgiving trip. I noticed exactly the same problem. Sometimes the camera wouldn't recognize the AA batteries in the grip. The buttons seemed to function fine. If I disconnected and then reconnected the grip, the camera sees the grip's batteries again.
All of the above is while using new AA alkaline batteries and I upgraded to ver 1.10 when that was available months ago.
I've returned from that trip and had to take the grip off the battery 'cause I don't yet have a bag large enough for the camera w/ grip. I intend to run rechargeable AA's in the grip when these alkalines die and maybe that will make a difference but I don't see why it would.
While I doubt this is a major problem, I can't believe we're the first to notice it. Or are we?
I have also experienced intermittent problems with the MB-D10 not always 'seeing' the rechargeable AA batteries (NI-MH). When I tried to do the upgrade to 1.10, the camera would not allow me to do the upgrade. I had to remove the MB-D10 and the upgrade worked fine. With regards to the intermittent problem, I merely remove the MB-D10, re-attach it and everything works fine..for awhile. I've cleaned the contacts but that doesn't seem to resolve the issue. I also have had intermittent problems with the multi-selector switch on the MB-D10. Sometimes it works and other times, it works but it requires a significant amount of pressure. I'm thinking that I may need to send this back to Nikon for attention.
Mon 08-Dec-08 07:15 AM | edited Mon 08-Dec-08 07:22 AM by Kanduser
I think I may be making some progress with this but it's still early days.
I believe now that the camera recognises the grip but is incorrectly showing the amount of remaining power when using AA batteries, maybe it's something to do with the change at 1.10 to show the type of AA batteries used in the display?
I had a play around with the battery pack using AA Ni-MH 2800mAh. I ran the pack until it switched over to the internal battery then removed and re-inserted the pack. The display showed 100% in the pack. I repeated this every time the camera switched over to the internal battery. Each iteration taking less time as the AA became progressively more depleted. During this progress it appeared that the camera assumed that there was 100% change left.
I'm now going to run a new pack until I get the first switch then I will carry out the process of removing the pack and re-inserting it, I will record the power level. I will then roll back to 1.03 and see what power level is shown for the battery. Having completed this I will reload 1.10 and use a EL3 in the grip and see if the recorded power level is correctly reported. I don't have a EL4 so somebody else may wish to try this option.
By the way Nikon's response is to return my camera to them? I explained that there response was unhelpful and have given them similar info to what I have said in this post...
>>I will then >>roll back to 1.03 and see what power level is shown for >the >>battery. >>Keith > >How will you roll back? I don't think you can. You would need >to buy another D300 which was still on an earlier version. Or >am I wrong?
Well I have already done this, I followed the same process as loading 1.10 but put 1.03 on the card and when I had finished the camera worked, showed 1.03 and none of the new features in 1.10 were available. Not sure how reliable this method is but with routers and access products this is a standard process.
If you are correct in your thinking it may be helpful to accurately measure the voltage of the AA pack at each point in your test. A fully charged AA levels off at about 1.2V very quickly and maintains that voltage throughout the useful life of the charge. That voltage slowly declines to about 1.1V or 1.0V (not much of a drop), until the end of the useful charge, when the voltage "falls off a cliff" very quickly. The usefulness of the pack at that point is dependent on the current demand because the internal resistance is very high- the pack is capable of delivering very modest amounts of surge current, which may be needed by the camera.
Compare that with an alkaline, which starts it's life at about 1.55V or more, then steadily declines throughout it's one-time charge life.
An exhausted NiMH also regains voltage fairly quickly when a load is removed and it gets a chance to rest, but that is very temporary and the cell voltage plummets as soon as an appreciable load is reintroduced. This also muddies the waters when you are trying to determine remaining charge based on voltage.
The practical effect of the above is why you rarely see remaining life indications on equipment using AA's. Since it is very tricky to measure the remaining life of an NiMH, Nikon may be tinkering with their formulas and may have chosen a greater evil (purely speculation of course but would explain why a firmware change might precipitate this behavior).
Regardless of how this shakes out, it is important to understand that the measurement of useful remaining charge of an NiMH cell is fundamentally very imprecise. The measurement of the Li batteries will always be more precise. Nikon may have gone out on a limb to even attempt this.
Good points, but we've been using Ni-MH in equipment for quite a while now and even if it's in-precise I would prefer the 1.03 version of events, at least that give you an indication when to change the pack
I'm not sure that measuring the pack off load would answer the question, it will depend on the internal resistance of the meter used. Ideally the best method would be to measure the pack while installed, although I'm not sure how this can be achieved right now.
>> I'm not sure that measuring the pack off load would answer the question
I ran the pack until it switched over to the internal battery then removed and re-inserted the pack. The display showed 100% in the pack.
I interpreted that to mean that the battery gauge more or less worked correctly, from a fresh charge, to showing empty, but then gave a false 100% reading after removing and re-inserting the (now exhausted) NiMH pack.
Depending on the timing of things, and how hard you used the camera just prior to the batteries exhausting, it is possible that the camera incorrectly interpreted a slight voltage jump as a new battery. Obviously I'm grasping at straws here, but trying to develop some rational line of thinking to explore this .
In your case, measuring the voltage of the pack after removing it the first time would just confirm the state of the batteries (at or near exhaustion) and might confirm that a voltage jump occurred if comparing to a measurement taken after a false 100% reading.
In the case of the few other reports (and maybe even your own), measuring the pack voltage just after charging and then at each critical event might turn up a bad cell or two. Any time you have a battery problem, the first thing you have to do is to ensure that all the cells are good. It's better done with something like a Maha MH-1000 battery tester/charger/conditioner but short of that, voltage readings will tell you more than you otherwise know.
There are a couple of people here reporting problems and much of what I suggested was directed at everyone. In thinking about it, I used my own AA pack only a couple of times, with earlier firmware versions. I carry a loaded AA pack with eneloops, but have not had a need for it since upgrading to 1.10. I have no need in the near future to blow off the 1000 or so images I would need to do to even try to reproduce this so I'm not much help here . I think I will swap packs, though, since at some point I will run down that AA pack.
Just to be clear, do you believe that the AA batteries were exhausted when it switched over, or do you think it prematurely switched over?
(I'm not sure how you could answer that, with certainty, without metering the batteries , which is why I am obsessed with measuring them )
I did notice, with the older firmware, that I went from full charge indication to exhausted rather quickly, which did not surprise me given the nature of the typical NiMH voltage discharge curve. Depedning on your answer, this could be somewhat of a matter of degree.
I may have an answer. I've been monitoring the display and would have expected the cells to be well past their best by now. After two days under 1.03 the display would be showing 25% remaining at which point I would change them.
Under 1.10 they were still showing 100%, so I fired off a few shots and after about 35 the warning display appeared in the view finder. Within 6 shots the camera had changed over to the internal battery.
I jacked out the pack and re-inserted it. As you predicted it showed 100% charge but after 4 shots it had reverted to the internal battery.
As mentioned trying to work out the run-off of a NiMH is not that precise and it would appear that under 1.10 a different algorithm has been implemented meaning that the user gets a false sense of security.
I guess the message is that until Nikon makes the necessary change you cannot rely (if anybody ever did) on the battery meter for the NiMH pack. By the way has anybody tried any other batteries?
So the camera is working correctly, the display shows the correct indications it's just that the run-off is rather steep between full and exhausted and I think that this could be handled a little bit better.
>> By the way has anybody tried any other batteries?
Using a 4 year old EN-EL4 (not the later high cap version), I have not had any unexpected results, although the nature of what I was doing never forced me to go down to less than about 40% remaining capacity. On my D2H, though (which likely uses the same (D300) sensing circuits and logic not available on NiMH packs), I have taken the batteries to zero or near zero. The indication has always been seemingly accurate.
My sense with the D200 and EN-EL3e's, though, is that while there is no abrupt falloff in remaining charge indicated, I don't think, for example, that I get nearly as many frames for the last 20% as I get from the first 20%, but I never studied it closely. I just know from experience that with 20-30% remaining, I need to change sooner rather than later. I have not shot EN-EL3e's in the D300 grip.
Here is an interesting chart of the (idealized) voltage curve of a typical (Maha) NiMH under two different loads. I say "idealized" because older batteries may behave differently and those charts are prepared from carefully controlled steady state tests that don't reflect how we use cameras.
Note that the difference (for any typical load), between, say, 80% remaining and 20% remaining is only about 0.1V per cell. More importantly, note that with a 1C (high) current draw the absolute voltage is about 0.1V higher than a 0.2C (slow) draw. The voltage under a slow draw at the end of the useful charge is about identical to the voltage at the 80% point of a high load draw.
For that reason, if you measure your cell and get a 1.20V reading, you cannot have any clue as to the remaining charge without having knowledge of the rate of discharge.
A (continuous) 1C load would drain the battery in 1 hour. A 0.2C draw would drain the battery in 5 hours. Which more accurately reflects the real world draw on the camera? I think that would vary tremendously depending on the features you use - chimping (preview on) time- if any, the amount of time you keep the meter active, VR, AF, etc., plus even more importantly the number of frames you shoot per hour. The average draw down time can surely vary dramatically from as little as an hour to many days of sporadic shooting.
Considering that, and the nature of that voltage chart, it is no wonder that estimating remaining useful life is more black art than science. Not to say that Nikon didn't somehow go backwards with V1.10 of course, but at best it is a black art.
I'm a new MB-D10 user and never had it when running ver 1.3. Am I to understand that the battery indicator showed a partially depleted icon when the battery was, say, 1/2 way gone, under that version? Did it matter then whether the batter was nimh or alkaline?
Tue 09-Dec-08 07:22 AM | edited Tue 09-Dec-08 07:23 AM by Kanduser
Different types of cells have different discharge coefficients, thus to try and show the user the remaining charge a different algorithm is required. This is why there are four options within the camera (D300). If you use the wrong battery type it will not effect the camera's operation only that the display will not be "accurate" (see Neil's comments on preciseness).
Have a look at the graphs at the bottom of this web page as an example of discharge rates...
Whether or not the display is useful is an individuals personal choice, from my point I like to know when I pick up the camera whether I need to change / re-charge and don't like having a false sense of security, now I know about the display it's not a major problem.
Wed 17-Dec-08 07:12 AM | edited Wed 17-Dec-08 03:50 PM by Kanduser
I eventually received a response from Nikon...
Thank you for your update. Sorry for the delayed response, however I was unable to recreate the problem you describe using half- and nearly depleted NiMH and alkaline batteries. As I have heard no other reports on this subject, the best thing I can recommend is professional testing in an authorised service centre
I tried again loading 1.10 and after 5 minutes the camera had switched over to the internal battery. I've since reloaded 1.03 and the camera recognises the battery grip. I'm going to leave like this and see if it fixes the problem.
Update (5 hours later) 1.03 seemed to be running great then the BP image disappeared. So all my assertion that 1.03 was OK has vaporised. OK in my defence the problem has been intermittent so I have fallen foul of that but still feel a prat! So next step is to try some fresh NiMH and see if it's a single cell causing the problem (I currently have 32 of the blighters so it maybe a couple of duff cells that keep getting picked). Finally I will have to take Nikon up on their service centre solution.
I was using alkalines, and from what I can tell they decline in power differently than NiMh batteries. I'd shoot some and then realize I was running on the internal lithium battery. A while later I'd remove the tray from the grip, re-insert it, and the alkalines would again appear to have a charge. Rinse and repeat, over and over. The battery meter in the camera always showed the AA's to either be fulled charged, or having no charge at all.
Anyway, I eventually killed those alkalines and I'm now working on my first set of rechargeable NiMh's. It will be interesting to see how they work out.
Well I've tried a belt a braces approach to loading 1.10, formatting the CF between A & B and then reset the camera, also prayed to all the major religious gods, kept my finger crossed (well until I realised it was near as impossible to operate the camera), sold my sole to the devil (that could negate the praying bit but I'm a desperate person).
In the mean time I have new packs of NiMH waiting but I'm going to see if the initial approach worked (possibly should have done them in order to see what gave the best results?)
I'll let you know what I find but after my previous posting I really wouldn't hold your breath that it will bring any enlightenment... but then who knows.
I keep saying that I have made progress but this time I think I am getting somewhere.
After the belt and braces approach I still got the same problem so I was starting to feel that the problem was with the camera. However I decided to start from the bottom up and see if I could narrow down the problem.
I removed the SB-800 from the camera and monitored the effect. After three sets of batteries I have not been able to recreate the problem. I'm going to wait until this final set runs out and then will replace the SB-800 and see if the problem returns.
I've dropped Nikon a line to this effect to see if they can replicate the problem.
I'll drop a post here either once I have managed to replicate the problem or get a response from Nikon.
Nikon responded asking for an update and suggesting the I should try the combination of MB-D10 with NiMH, D300 and another Speedlight. As I have only one SB-800 (for now) I wondered if anybody else would be willing to try and see if they get the same result?
Basically set up the camera with MB-D10 (NiMH) and a Speedlight. Leave the camera on and walk away. Once the BP symbol disappears from the display (This can vary so it may take some time) jack out the NiMH and then re-insert them without changing the batteries. What I am looking for is a when the battery pack is re-inserted it should show a fully pack. This will run again for a while before the BP symbol disappears. Repeating the process will give the same results but the time between the BP symbol disappearing gets progressively shorter.
Carrying out the same process but without the Speedlight and the BP symbol disappears removing and re-inserting the MB-D10 battery pack has no effect, the camera remains on the internal battery. Thus the batteries are correctly reported by the camera as depleted.
Nikon have now suggested that the speedlight may be faulty, so far they have suggested that the Camera, the MB-D10 may be faulty, there is little else left, well apart from the operator but that is a given he's definitely not firing on all cylinders... Thus if the issue only effects my set-up then clearly there is a localised problem but if the same can be replicated by other users then that sort of rules out a faulty item, unless quality control has failed in a spectacular fashion...