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D200 almost as envisioned one year ago...


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ZoneV Silver Member Nikonian since 08th Jan 2005
Sun 25-Dec-05 02:55 PM

I wrote the following one year ago and posted it six months ago before the server failure. Many of the specs. came out true, while others similarly to how I had predicted. Merry Christmas!

The Nikon D200: raising the digital bar for the serious semi-pro photographer

The Nikon D200 needs to be a big upgrade from the D100 in photographic quality and build. With the rumor that Canon is working on a 12MP, 6.5 fps., 1.3x crop sensor digital equivalent to the EOS-3, the bar is set even higher than it was 6 six months ago. This new Canon camera will apparently slot between the EOS-1DII and EOS-20D, and is projected (again via rumors) to cost between $2500 and $3000 US. With that and possibly an EOS-30D likely in the next year or so, the D200 should compete just as the D70 competed with the higher-end the Canon EOS-10D, but with a lower price. Here is my list of D100 additions that I'd like to see in the next generation. The D200 would be nearly perfect and a true digital F100:

D200 new features:

· 12MP 1.5x DX CMOS or CCD*
· ISO 100 to 1600 settable in 1/3 EV steps plus Hi-1 at ISO 3200
· Magnesium outer body and metal inner chassis
· Metering selector switch on prism like D2-series
· True 5.0 fps. Capture in full-frame DX mode with 20-frame NEF buffer and fast buffer dumping
· A more robust AF motor (this comes before an upgrade to the new multi-CAM 1400 sensor)
· A larger, higher contrast (for ease of manual focus) viewfinder with at least true 96% coverage (finder magnification equal to D2-series)
· 30 sec. To 1/16000 sec. Top shutter speed *1/500 sec. top sync. speed (like D70) (Might be tough to get with CMOS; if impossible, then implement the standard iTTL FP sync. mode.)
· AIS lens compatibility (feel free to disagree with me on this one; to each his own)
· Custom function to use lens aperture ring
· AF-on button
· Func. button
· Multi-Cam 1400 11-point AF module
· A Canon-like meter electronic analog display that shows flash and ambient exposure data superimposed in the finder along the right side.
· Less noise at high ISO speeds (preferably with the 12MP, but if not, then incorporate an 8MP super-low noise mode. i.e even lower levels than Canon EOS 20D)
· Interchangeable finder screens, including split-image/microprism variant (On-demand grid lines retained with all screens)
· PC flash sync terminal
· Built-in flash with GN of 50 in feet at ISO 100; ability to set manually and use in commander mode with new commander infrared filter
· 10-pin remote terminal
· Compatibility with WT-2A and GPS interface
· Battery strength indication like D2 series
· 3-color histogram display
· 3D color matrix metering II
· Provision for iTTL speedlight compatibility including wireless, high-speed sync, and Distance-priority manual flash
· 2.0x crop mode option
· Special B&W mode that allows using white balance system to mimic effect of color filters for contrast control

Nikon user since 2000