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207 of 214 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fast handling, beautiful images...
I pre-ordered this camera, and have now had it for about two months and taken over 10,000 shots with it. I'm upgrading from a Nikon D700. I'm not a pro, but I do occasional commercial jobs. I've updated this review several times, and will continue to do so as needed.

Vertical orientation: Nice. The vertical grip isn't nearly as contoured as the main horizontal...
Published on May 5, 2012 by Hankk

8 of 13 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Amazing Camera! Until...
Even two years after it's release, this camera stands the test of time. It's a solid workhorse with fantastic low light image quality that feels and sounds as a pro camera should!


You have any issues with it and then it's all down hill if you are out of the warranty period. This was one of the first cameras released so maybe that's the the...
Published 6 months ago by Heather L.

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207 of 214 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fast handling, beautiful images..., May 5, 2012
Hankk (Boulder, CO) - See all my reviews
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Nikon D4 16.2 MP CMOS FX Digital SLR with Full 1080p HD Video (Body Only) (OLD MODEL) (Electronics)
I pre-ordered this camera, and have now had it for about two months and taken over 10,000 shots with it. I'm upgrading from a Nikon D700. I'm not a pro, but I do occasional commercial jobs. I've updated this review several times, and will continue to do so as needed.

Vertical orientation: Nice. The vertical grip isn't nearly as contoured as the main horizontal grip -- there's just not as much stuff to grab your hands onto (no deep pockets for your fingertips). Too bad. But when holding it for any length of time, it's sure a lot easier than holding twisting my arm above my head and rotating the camera. Note that the vertical grip has a programmable button on it, which I use for Mode (A/S/M/P). I understand the D3s didn't have this, which seems crazy -- I use it all the time. I wish the vertical grip had all the buttons as the main grip does -- e.g., there's only one programmable button, so if you want to use it for Mode, then there's no way to change EV +- while vertical, or start taking a movie. Also, I wish the two function buttons (DoF preview, and the one above it) were replicated in vertical mode. They're not, which is silly -- there's room right there for them.

I shoot one-handed a lot, at events where I have a flash in one hand an a camera in the other (using a set of PocketWizards). I thought the weight of the D4 would make this harder. But no: when holding it vertically, the D4 is a lot easier to manage than the vertical D700. (I never had a vertical grip for the D700, so I can't compare.) Even holding it horizontally, the larger grip makes it easier to manage the D4 than the D700 one-handedly -- it makes the camera honestly feel substantially lighter. One gripe: the vertical joystick for adjusting the focus point is still a bit too much of a stretch to use with one hand.

Shutter: yep, it's 10 fps. Let it rip! Great for capturing faces of both kids and adults at just the right moment.

General ergonomics and build quality: Great. Totally solid.

Weight: Having never had a pro-sized body before, I feared it'd be too heavy. But no: once you throw a 70-200 2.8 on there, the difference between this and a D700 is pretty small, certainly not a big deal. I carry it around on an Op Tech slider strap bolted into the tripod port, plenty stable and strong.

Battery: 2000+ shots (including lots of live view and some movies), and it's down to half. That's plenty of capacity for me. The charger is a real monster to carry around, about 4x the size of a D700 charger, too big to just slip in a pocket. One BIG PROBLEM: after charging it the second time, I had the camera turned on and sitting out overnight. The next morning, the battery was completely dead. I have no idea what happened -- the D700 never ever did this to me. Was the camera turned so the AF was being pushed all night? Or is there a bug in the auto-off? No idea, but I'll post if it happens again. (Update: This has now happened to me three times, where the battery has gone from 100% to 0% overnight. Very frustrating. The first time I thought it was because the camera was in my bag and the AF-On button was being pressed, so it was trying to focus all night long. But that's not it, since it was on a shelf the other two times. Since I don't see others who have had this problem, I'm sending it back to Nikon for service.)

[Update: Beats me what the root cause was, but Nikon replaced the logic board and I haven't seen the issue come back.]

Lit up controls: Nikon won't point this out, but they don't *all* light up! Most do, but not the trash, or playback, or EV+-, or Mode, or Live View. Huh? All the buttons on my cell phone lit up 10 years ago. It's not that hard.

XQD card: Fast to write, fast to transfer. I love it. Being able to shoot off dozens of RAWs without stopping is great. Nice of Nikon to include the card and reader (but really, I'm not sure they had any other option here -- the market isn't exactly flooded with these cards).

Live View: Works a million times better than it did on the D700. It's kind of funny though: it now makes the pro-DSLR able to shoot as easily as a $200 point-and-shoot. But whatever: Live View is nice to have. It's fast and intuitive. One advantage that isn't obvious: you can use it to set the focus point to the far corners of the frame, well outside the small area of the sensor covered by the 51-point AF grid. How I wish Nikon would allow the main AF system to focus in the far corners too: those 51 points still only cover about 20% of the camera's full frame! More in DX mode, but come on, Nikon. This is probably my single biggest complaint about the camera (or any DSLR) -- bigger focus area please!

Focus modes: I was initially bummed to see that the three-position focus-mode switches from the D700 had been removed, replaced by 'software' settings using the main control wheels. But after using them I'm fine with the change, even in favor of it. The number of focus modes has increased (because you can change between 9-, 21-, and 51-point tracking easily now, which were hidden in a menu before), and the design works pretty fast. Disadvantage is that it requires two hands to change modes, where you used to do it with one.

The built-in AF motor is noticeably faster than on the D700. Live View mode uses contrast-detection focusing which was ultra-slow on the D700 (especially using motor-driven lenses like the AF-D's), but pretty usable now.

Face Detection (in Live View) works great. It's super easy to get low-angle shots holding the camera away from your body. If the subject moves you'll see a green box on the LCD follow the face around -- it's pretty cool to watch it track.

Believe it or not, Face Detection also works through the pentaprism viewfinder. It took me awhile to believe this, but it really does. I proved it to myself by displaying a photo of a face on my laptop's screen, and focusing the camera on it. And like magic, no matter where it was, the focus indicators would lock on to the eyes. If I panned so that one eye left the FOV, then the focus would jump to the other eye. This is really cool. However, in reality it only works moderately well... I mean, if you're shooting at 24 mm in a busy room, and there's a few people in front of you, the camera is likely to focus on the wall instead of the people. Switch to Live View and it'll lock right on to the faces. Switch back and it jumps to the wall. My thought is that when using the viewfinder, the camera is dong face-detection on the smaller 91,000-pixel metering array. When using Live View, it can use millions of pixels from the main chip. Small faces can get hidden in 91,000 pixels (that's sub-VGA resolution!), but are seen in the big chip. I'm not knocking it, since it's clearly state-of-the art... it's just not perfect.

One cool thing about face detection is that it also finds faces on playback (even if face detection wasn't used on that shot). Scroll the front control wheel and it'll zoom in to just the face on every image, so you can easily check focus on the parts you care about. Super.

Metering modes: Too bad that the three-position metering switch is now an electronic controller, set in the viewfinder. But it turns out to be no big deal, because the metering on the D4 is really an improvement from the D700. I used to have to go to spot metering a lot for faces in the shade, and the auto face-detection now catches that so much better than it used to, that I haven't been using spot metering very much. Really, the new metering is very, very good. It has its quirks though: like, let's say you're taking 10 shots in a row of someone's face. If on one shot they turn or are blocked and the face-recognition doesn't work right, then that shot is likely to be underexposed by a stop relative to the rest in the series (see my example photo of this posted on Amazon). In the end under- or over-exposure by a stop or two is no big deal on this camera if you're shooting RAW, because the files give you tons of leeway to work with to fix the exposure in post. But it's always best to get the exposure right the first time, and the D4 does a better job of that than the D700.

'Quiet' and 'Silent' modes. Quiet mode is indeed a lot quieter than the regular shutter. It seems to move all the mechanical parts slower -- so you hear it for longer, but it's definitely quieter. Limited to 1 fps or so, and it doesn't work in Continuous mode (except if you're in Live View, in which case it does). Silent mode takes 2 MP shots in Live View mode (essentially movie stills - shutter must be between 1/30 and 1/125 sec, and JPEG-only, no RAW). I could see using it occasionally, though I wish the resolution were higher. Also, in order to *enter* Silent mode, you have to be in Live View, and you have to pull up the mirror to do that, which makes the normal 'chunking' sound one time. An interesting note: in Silent mode, the exposure counter increments like normal (DSC_0101, 0102, etc.), but the EXIF value for 'Shutter Count' stays unchanged, just like it should. ** Silent mode is exclusive to the D4, and isn't on the D800.

Image quality: Beautiful... really crisp and sharp and smooth. The D700 was great too. For some reason this looks better. The number of pixels and the ISO are only slightly improved from the D700... the improvement to my image quality is dramatically better, more than the one or two stop improvement would suggest. Maybe Nikon's color processing software's improved, who knows what. But I didn't expect much improvement in image quality, and I got it.

ISO: It's a stop or two better than the D700. The ultra-high ISO's (like 200,000+ = H4.0) are there, but pretty silly. Even in bright sun, they're so full of noise so as to be useless. In low light they're even worse. (I guess you could use H4.0 if you were trying to monitor license plates of speeding vehicles under moonlight, or something crazy like that... but no normal photographic application is going to use that.) Up to ISO 10,000 or so, images are very clean. Focusing works really well in low-light, better than the D700 for sure. A nice change is that Auto ISO can now be easily turned on/off by holding ISO and rotating the front control knob -- no more going into the menus.

One big change to exposure calculation is that the shutter speed can now be set based on the focal length. In the past, you'd set it (in the Auto ISO menu) to use a minimum of say 1/30 sec, which is great at 24 mm, but not what you want at 70 mm. OK, terrific -- I was really stoked on this, since it makes a lot of sense and is more accurate in setting the shutter speed. But there's a huge problem in how it's implemented, in that it's blind to whether you're using a VR lens! So if I'm at 200 mm, it'll pick 1/400th sec for me. But I paid the big bucks for the VR lens so I don't have to shoot at 1/400th... I know I can handhold it just fine at 1/50th. The net effect here is that you'll end up shooting at a higher-than-necessary shutter speed, putting you into high-ISO territory, when you'd be otherwise safe to shoot much slower at low ISO. Alas -- maybe Nikon will get this right with the D5. I ended up turning off this focal-length sensitivity setting, and telling it to shoot at 1/100th or faster regardless.

Ethernet connection: Plug in a cable, and the camera has a built-in web server, for doing tethered shooting. Not something I'll use much, but it seems to work. No additional software needed -- just a web browser. I also used it for tethered shooting through Aperture straight out of the box, and it worked fine, no new drivers needed.

Auto white balance: as advertised, seems to work better than before. No big deal, but a nice bonus. One weirdness though is that the white balance seems to be less consistent than it was before. For instance, shooting outside in the shade, in the past I could set the right WB correction in Aperture and it'd be right-on for every shot in the series. No more -- a good number of individual shots require more hand-tweaking now. This seems like a bug, like maybe the RAW files are getting tagged with the wrong color temp. It could well also be a bug in Aperture's handling of the D4 RAWs; I haven't tried it with Lightroom yet. A bonus with

Display: Better than before. Not really a big deal to me. Minor point: the display itself is polarized such that if you're wearing your polarized Ray Bans, the screen will look dark until you turn it to vertical mode. The D700 was polarized, but at a 45 degree angle, so it was still visible in horizontal mode. The display has a really viewing angle, meaning that if you hold it overhead in Live View, you can glance up at it and at least get *some* sense of how your framing is, even viewing the display nearly edge-on. It doesn't pivot of course, but it's definitely usable for a lot of overhead shots.

[** Update: Nikon replaced the main display for me when mine failed. The new one is different, and is viewable in landscape mode while wearing polarized shades. I doubt it was an intentional change on their part, but for me it worked out as a minor bonus!]

Viewfinder: The image looks a bit bigger and fuller than on the D700. Not that big a deal -- I could always see my subject just fine before. Maybe a bit less squinting necessary now.

Extra configurability: Nikon now lets you reprogram even more of the buttons than the D700 allowed. I like one of the options in particular: I've set the Fn button (below the DoF preview button, next to the lens mount) to go to image review. Normally it takes two hands to hit the image-review button, but now I can do it quickly and using the right hand that's already on the camera anyhow. Just one more thing I miss now going back to the D700.

HDR, timelapse, multiple-exposures: they all work as advertised. Probably won't use them much.

Video: I'm not a video shooter but I tried it out outside under streetlights, where the video was super-clean. Inside with a night light it was a total failure at high ISO's -- too much noise to see anything at all. Others know a lot more about video than me, so read their reviews instead.

Minor operational change: On the D700, the control wheels went dead right after taking a shot, requiring a half-press to wake up the metering system again, if you used the control wheels to select through images. On the D4, they stay live after the shutter press. Awesome. This was always a minor annoyance before, and I'm glad it's changed. It's hidden on an obscure setting within Custom F10.

Flash: There is none. Occasionally I used CLS for remote triggers on the D700 and you obviously can't do that any more. And sometimes I don't want to carry around the PocketWizards for just a snapshot flash-fill. Oh well -- can't have it all. For what it's worth, the PocketWizards (TT5's) work perfectly, no problems at all. I called up the PW people about an unrelated issue and they confirmed to me (as of June 2012) that the PW's work great on the D4... not working yet on the D800/800E, they said.

Flash exposure: The EV+- and the Flash EV are now separated. It use to be that lowering the camera EV would also lower the flash output (so dropping the background while keeping the subject lit would require two sync'd setting changes). No more. Nikon took after Canon here, good to see. This stuff works fine with the PW's. ** This Flash EV setting (custom e5) is exclusive to the D4. It's not on the D800.

Reviewing images: You can zoom out to see 72 images at a time, and use the joystick to cruise around these. But regardless of all of the image-processing power onboard, it's still frustratingly slow to scroll backward by 500 or 1000 images. There's apparently no in-camera buffering of the thumbnails -- they're reloaded from the card every time, so it may still take you a few minutes of slow scrolling to find that cool shot from a few days ago that you want to show someone.

Manual: 456 frikkin' pages. I like camera manuals and this one's pretty well written. It's not literature but it explains the settings clearly enough.

Why not the D800? 50 MB images are too big for me, and I'm not going to be printing any banners or posters from my work anyhow. Almost everything I do goes online. Virtually any camera has enough resolution for me. I'm more interested in handling / ergonomics / ISO / dynamic range / speed, than resolution. If I was doing landscapes instead of people, I'd of course go for the D800 instead.

Is six thousand bucks too much to spend on a camera? Probably. But Nikon bodies remain in high demand, and used prices are high. I can likely sell this in a year or two for not much less than I paid for it. (My three-year-old D700 has only lost 1/3 of its value since it was new, or about a thousand dollars over three years.) Is having a camera like that worth a dollar or two a day to me? Absolutely.

P.S. I'll answer any questions below. And if you found this useful, feel free to click and tell me so!

[Update June 2013. 45,000 pics and one year later, it remains awesome. I only have a few frustrations and minor things to add:

o I wish the front buttons -- Function and Preview -- were more programmable, and I wish Nikon put a duplicate set you could reach in vertical mode.
o I prefer the analog buttons to change exposure mode on the D700, over the menu here.
o I don't use Live View very much -- it's just so much slower than viewfinder mode that even though focus on a face in the corner very nicely, I can usually do it myself faster.
o Don't mind the weight at all. Feels great in the hand. I use an OpTech slider strap into an arca-swiss knockoff plate bolted into the bottom.
o I use 10 fps *all the time*. On safari, with kids, anything. It's wonderful.
o XQD card is great, though I wish there was a good way to take advantage of its speed to download to my older Mac, which only has a USB2 and not USB3.
o Nikon replaced the main logic board after I reported problems with the battery suddenly dying overnight. No problems since then.
o I wish the 51 focus points went further across the FOV -- they're all clustered at the center.
o I'm not a big bird shooter but I have been amazed at how well the focus tracking will follow a bird who moves in & out of the frame, well away from the original focus point.
o Picture quality is just great. I get a ton of keepers, and when I don't, it's always my fault and not the camera's.

I managed to drop the camera -- 8 inches onto carpet with an 85/1.4 on -- and it knocked the camera completely out of focus, and apparently knocked the main display loose so it flickered a lot. (So much for indestructibility of a pro body...) I sent it back to Nikon explaining the situation, and they were nice enough to fix it for free, which involved replacing the front bayonet mount. But the camera spent *nearly two months at Nikon* to get fixed! It was on "parts hold" for over a month, and when they returned it, they sent to to the wrong address to boot -- an old address of mine.]
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62 of 62 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The cream of the crop, May 11, 2012
This review is from: Nikon D4 16.2 MP CMOS FX Digital SLR with Full 1080p HD Video (Body Only) (OLD MODEL) (Electronics)
I have been using the D4 since the middle of March.

I am a professional sports photographer, so I am shooting two games a day during the week and sometimes four or five games over a weekend. I shoot a lot.

The D4 is an upgrade from my D3. I skipped the D3s, which I understand is a strong performer as well.

The D4 excels in a couple of very critical areas for me. The first is low level shooting. With the D4 I will no longer have to light grungy, dank, dark college gyms for basketball and swimming. The camera shoots very usable JPEGs at 10,000 ISO. This is remarkable. Very little noise, and if you are not shooting to make huge prints, the noise is hardly noticeable. I am sure the NEF files at that size are workable as well. I tend to stay away from the highest ISO ratings, only because I haven't needed them.

I cannot wait for fall night football games as the combination of high ISO and a 2.8 lens will be perfect.

The auto focus on this camera is amazing. The D3 was good. The D4 is great. The combination of this with a 200-400 AFS Zoom is just heaven. I've gotten more, better and great shots since I got this camera than in the whole season before it. My clients have noticed it and commented. Very impressive.

The white balance is much better than the older models. It gives you a true color and needs little tweaking. But if you need to tweak--it can do that too.

A lot of people will complain about the XQD card. I wont. It is fast. When you stick that card in, with the camera set at JPEG Fine, you have about 71 images in your "burst." Why you would ever use 71 images at once is beyond me, but they are there. For example, I shot a lacrosse championship game the other day. It went into two overtimes. I was able to shoot the action going into the final shot--and then shoot a stream of jubilation shots without missing a beat. That would have consumed all of the memory of the D3. Yes, the cards are expensive, but if you shoot raw, you are going to need the space.

The battery is new, having to meet new Japanese standards. But, I've gotten nearly 4,000 shots out of it before seeing the low battery light come on.

I am not used to the Video yet, so I cannot comment on it too much. I need to work out the bugs and give that a shot before the fall sports season starts. As my clients evolve in their media savvy, I am sure that an ability to shoot short video clips of their games will come in very handy. I need every competitive edge I can get these days.

All in all, this camera is everything a pro would want: High quality, innovative, fast, big, weather sealed, and backwards compatible with my equipment. The D3s will give it a run for low level light shooting, but if you are moving up from a D2 or D3, the bells and whistles make this worth every dime.
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30 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 100% Satisfied, June 9, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Nikon D4 16.2 MP CMOS FX Digital SLR with Full 1080p HD Video (Body Only) (OLD MODEL) (Electronics)
I'm a full-time photographer and own two D4 cameras and use the D3s as a backup. I've used the D4 for over a year now and have only positive things to say about the camera. Even after 80+ weddings, corporate events and countless portraits and product shoots, the camera is still solid with zero problems.

What I care most about is getting the shot! Image quality is a close second. The D4 shines in both of these areas. I've found that focus is extremely fast, even in very low light.

Probably the biggest improvement I see over the D3s is Latitude; my experience with the D4 is that it gives you an extra stop to work with in case your exposure is off. The pixels hold up VERY VERY well when edited hard in Photoshop.

If there is anything negative I could say about the camera, it'd be the fact that it takes two different kinds of memory cards!!! I've learned to live with it but it's still irritating; very expensive too since I already owned around 400 gigs of CF memory.

Most of my competition use the Canon 5D Mark iii. It produces excellent image quality, but falls far short mechanically. For starters it has a shutter rating of 100,000 (vs 400,000 with the D4), which makes it VERY UNDEPENDABLE after about six months in the hands of a full-time professional. It also has a low ISO rating compared to the D4 and focus problems. I have one second shooter that uses the 5D and have noticed a definite difference between the RAW files from her camera and mine. The Nikon files suit my taste better. If she wasn't so good I'd insist that all my second shooters shoot with my same equipment...

Now I WOULDN"T purchase this camera if you aren't a professional photographer. It is a TANK and a WORKHORSE. That is what you are paying for with the D4. However, if you are an enthusiast or part-time photographer you'll save a LOT of money and still get great file quality by choosing a significantly less expensive camera - Nikon (D700, D800) or Canon (5D Mark iii).

One thing to say about Amazon... in the beginning, there was a massive waiting list for the D800 and the D4. I've always been loyal to a certain camera super-store in New York. Through them, the waiting list was over six month... with Amazon, it was WEEKS. Also, after 10 years of loyalty and around $100k of my business I've always felt like a meaningless number to them. On the other hand, Amazon has given me an incredibly personalized experience by assigning me a 'Camera Concierge' (yes, a real person with a real voice) who made sure I was perfectly happy with my camera purchases. And thank goodness for that because I bought the D800 and was not happy with a focusing problem. They arranged a free return and zero hassle. This is when I chose to fork out the extra $$$ and purchase a second D4. I now purchase most of my camera equipment through Amazon.
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44 of 49 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars D4 sets new benchmark, January 6, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Nikon D4 16.2 MP CMOS FX Digital SLR with Full 1080p HD Video (Body Only) (OLD MODEL) (Electronics)
This will be an ongoing product review and something I will be updating as time goes on.

Ordering from Amazon -
As soon as I saw the news on that amazon had opened up the website for D4 orders, I placed mine. Thank you nikonrumors! This was January 6th. Since then, Amazon sent their usual emails informing me that the product was backordered and such. The only problem was kept listing March 20th as the release date and March 21st as my "Estimated Shipping Date". Of course this didn't happen. In fact, at least for those that watch, this happened to all D4 orders. The only bummer about the whole ordering experience was that the Amazon customer service was pretty much useless and uninformed. In the future, amazon should be quicker to correct their release dates. At least I got the camera..moving on...

Camera shipping from Amazon -
In the past I have been contacted by Amazon concierge to make sure my order was going smoothly. DIdn't happen with the D4. Not a big deal. Camera shipped next day UPS Saver on March 28 and arrived March 29th just past 5pm. Shipped was free due to the release date screw ups. Camera was boxed OK..and it did the job. I would have packed it better..but it arrived ok. Signature required.

D4 contents -
Good news here! The D4 came with the Sony XQS Card Reader and one 16 gig Sony XQS card. Very cool - considering my 32 gig order is still pending. The Card reader and card were in a white envelope placed on top of the camera contents.

Additional contents -
1x EN-EL18 battery
MH-26 Battery charger (charges 2 batteries)
Instructions in both Spanish & English
Warranty Programs
Nikon ViewNX2
USB cable
Caps - body, hotshot
Clips - USB & body
UF1 & UF2 connectors

D4 Specs (and compared to the D3s) -
Weight - 41.6 oz (D3s 43.7 oz) (Weight difference is noticeable!)
Pixels - 16.2 million (D3s 12.1)
FPS - 10/11 (D3s 9 FPS)
ISO - 100 - 12,800 with lo-1 as 50, HI-4 as 204,800 (D3s 200 - 12,800, Lo-1 100, HI-3 102,400)
Video - Full 1080 HD up to 30 FPS (D3s 720 at 24 FPS)
Monitor size - 3.2 inches (D3s 3.0)
Viewfinder - 100%
Integrated network port

D4 camera (first impressions) -

Ergonomics & Buttons - WOW a lot has changed here. If you are coming from a D3s like me, all sorts of little changes mean some big adjustments. Here is my list of just what I've found so far -
- Metering selector is gone!!! It used to be on the prism and adjusted with your right thumb. Not any more! It is now replacing the "Lock" button and press with your left hand - and adjusted INSIDE the viewfinder.
- Focus Mode Selector - Gone too! The button to toggle between manual and autofocus is still there, but to toggle between C & S is now inside the view finder
- Hand grip is different for both portrait and landscape photos - including a small black piece of rubber attached near the camera bottom
- The camera back - Just looking at the back of the camera has sent me back to the full manual to learn this camera from the beginning. This includes changes to the thumbnails, picture control, and playback buttons and removal of the Area AF mode selector button.
- Overall I like the changes, and love the ability to see changes inside the viewfinder. Might be a while to get my fingers to adapt. Overall it's good.

New D4 Network capabilities -
New to the D4, the camera can do FTP photo and movie uploads, control camera functions from a laptop using an optional software package (Caera Control Pro 2), and take pictures using an iPhone and remote browser. You can also control multiple cameras and do synchronized releases using the WT-5.

New D4 Chips & Batteries -
The battery and XQS memory chips are new to the D4. This means having to spend more money to buy new stuff - as opposed to those that upgraded from the D3 to D3s. Sure it is good for the long term, but is a bit of a pain right now. If you shoot any other camera as well, then you will need to lug about two battery charges. If you don't have a backup camera, you will still need two sets of chips.

Shooting the D4 -
- Quiet shutter option. There is a new shutter setting for a quiet shutter. This is on the command dial next to the high speed shutter release.
- a bump up in FPS is subtle, but nice. I have yet to fully test this, but for shooting motor sports, I like it
- Viewfinder is now 100% and nothing to dislike about this!
- The virtual horizon is now inside the viewfinder! I constantly have to correct my pictures and love this feature. This is used by setting the Fn button in the menu to use the virtual horizon feature. The horizon only works when holding the camera normally - not vertical. Still...great feature and I love it.

- The D4 takes pushing up the ISO beyond the D3s. But the difference is minimal as far as I can tell.

Overall (so far) - D4 is every bit as good as the D3s and then some. The upgrades to the buttons are annoying, but I think will really be more useful in the field than the D3s version. The new chips and batteries are just progress in my mind. Not a big deal, just a little more money that has to be spent. I've only had this camera one day (and one night) and plan to add to this as I hit up some car races and concours...
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21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Camera I've Ever Had, July 2, 2012
This review is from: Nikon D4 16.2 MP CMOS FX Digital SLR with Full 1080p HD Video (Body Only) (OLD MODEL) (Electronics)
I'm a non-professional, photo enthusiast who shoots about 15K photos a year, mostly travel photography. I upgraded from a D300 mainly because of it's inability to capture my then 15 month old son who had starting walking. The D4 changed all that in the sense that I now have literally thousands of perfectly focused photos of my son crawling, climbing, jumping, running and yes falling; all in a 3 month time span. That to me is worth $6K and my wife agrees. The dynamic range and skin tone are excellent. On the D300, I would have to do a 5 shot bracket to have a nice HDR blend for landscape shooting. With the D4, the recovery in the shadows are so awesome especially with the newer Lightroom 4 software that I can often get away with one shot (-1 EV) and it'll look 90% as good as a 5 shot blend from the D300.

And of course, it's very durable. I have taken it to extreme humidity and heat and it has functioned beautiful. Never locked up at all so I haven't even needed to update the fireware. I'm currently in the 19K shutter actuation range and have recharged the batteries four times. Note though that I don't use video or Live View heavily.

Will it make you a better photographer? Likely not, I showed my wife pictures from our Montreal trip three years ago taken with the D300 and 18-200 VR1, and compared them to our recent Asia trip taken with the D4 and 24-70mm lens. She said my skill level has changed but the subject and content are pretty much similar.

In one word, the D4 is a MACHINE. Responsive. Accurate. Fast. From the D300 to the D4, it's like going from a 150 hp minivan to a 500 HP Porsche 911 turbo.
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect for the Right Photographer, August 23, 2012
This review is from: Nikon D4 16.2 MP CMOS FX Digital SLR with Full 1080p HD Video (Body Only) (OLD MODEL) (Electronics)
I have had the Nikon D4 for a couple of months now. During that time I have had the opportunity to put several thousand shots on it under a wide variety of conditions. I shoot mostly with the Nikon 14-24 2.8 and the 24-70 2.8 lenses. Upfront I will say that I am very happy with the D4. Mine did come with the 16 GB qxd card and the card reader which was nice.

The D4 has a great sensor. It is not surprising to me that it ranked very highly on DxO mark's website. It has excellent dynamic range and does very well in low light. At proper exposure highlights are not blown out and shadow detail is retained very nicely. Color rendition is much nicer than with my old D200 which one would expect from a camera that is a couple of generations more advanced and several times the price. That said I was still very impressed with how nicely the D4 captured the subtle coloration of wild flowers in some recent shots.

I find the controls of the D4 to be very ergonomically intuitive. I have used Nikons for a long time and so their control layout is very familiar to me. If you were coming to the D4 from another camera system you might not find it as easy. The shutter release is easy to find without looking. The command and sub-command dials fall naturally under your fingers and though others have criticized the placement of the video button near the exposure compensation button, I have had no problems with this . Another issue that others have raised that I have not had a problem with is the change in the focus mode selector switch. I actually find the new arrangement more intuitive and easier to understand than the old system. I use the different focus modes far more actively than I ever did before.

The vertical shooting controls are great as are the new focus points selection "nubs". I have found these new joysticks easy to use and as I use a Blackrapid strap I have no problem with them catching on my clothes. I also like the fact that you can press any of the three focus point selectors in the middle and it automatically re-centers the focus point.

In terms of negatives the biggest one is weight. This is a heavy camera. Strap on a pro lens and you have several pounds of image making machine packed on your body. As a pro that isn't supposed to matter to me but as I get older it does. I do a lot of street photography and lugging this bad boy through NYC for a whole day is something you feel. I would not give up this camera but it is something to be aware of. I recently carried it on a hiking trip in the rocky mountains where I had been intending to take a D800 before I had to return it. The D4 definitely was something I felt in the pack. Nuff said.

Not really a negative but something to be aware of is that the 200 shot buffer is really something that applies to jpegs and a qxd card. You will not get that shooting raw. With qxd and raw you might get 60-70 in the buffer. The real bummer is when you shoot with a 600x CF card. Shooting raw the buffer might go down to 30 at continuous high speed shooting. Just something to be aware of.

Other than that nothing really bad to say.

In terms of recommendations I would say if you are in the market for a DSLR of this caliber that the D4 is a very solid choice. By this I mean that Nikon has created a camera that does all the things a camera in this category should at this point in time with no glaring omissions. It is definitely a new benchmark for Nikon. Only you can decide if you really need a camera of this cost and weight. I tend not to like reviews that sound like cheerleading but I do want to say that I am very happy with this camera and would unreservedly recommend it to someone it the market for this kind of camera. Photokina is just around the corner and Nikon may have other alternatives to consider if the D4 doesn't meet your requirements.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Everything the other reviews say I agree...., December 29, 2012
Stojan the Trojan (Southern California) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Nikon D4 16.2 MP CMOS FX Digital SLR with Full 1080p HD Video (Body Only) (OLD MODEL) (Electronics)
My first Pro Body camera, and never more happy. I agree with all the other reviewers except the "fine tooth comb" criticisms.
The D4 may have it's flaws, but I've yet to notice anything that would bother me. I have used with my Nikon "Trinity" lenses (14-24, 24-70, 70-200 2.8 ED's) in almost every kind of light situations. I use it for Friday night high school football games, indoor basketball, afternoon travel baseball games, and last August I took my D4 on a trip to Yellowstone NP. You can find a lower cost FX camera for landscape and wildlife photography, but you're not going to get the 11fps. Sports photography is the majority of what I do, that's why I chose the D4. If I did just portraits and landscape, I would have purchased the Nikon D800 and sacrificed fps for more megapixels. Using my D4, I've printed sports images up to 20 x 24 without digital editing, and I am amazed at the image quality. I consider myself a high quality amateur photographer. Using the D4, I've forced myself to learn more and for this reason, my photo skills have improved. There is no sense in making an investment in this camera unless you learn how to use it, and use it to get the most out of it. As for Yellowstone NP, I rented the NIkon 400 mm f/2.8 vr ii lens ($9,000 lens that has limited use for me). I captured a photo of a gray wolf from 300 yards, and the 16x20 photo, which hangs in my classroom office. It looks as though he was 20 feet from me. The sharpness and colors are incredible. I also have a photo of a grizzly bear from 150 yards. It's also a 16x20 image in my classroom office. Both photos were taken in the east end of the Lamar Valley in the early morning hours just an hour after sunrise. As for sports photography, I have a photo of my son batting and in full swing, late afternoon sun, with the ball just off the bat for a home run. The 20x24 image hangs in his bedroom. I also have a photo of my daughter playing softball under artificial light. Also a 20x24, and no less extraordinary in color image quality and sharpness. I don't think I'd have the incredible colors, sharpness, and size, if it weren't for the advanced D4, and 11fps. As for high school football, and low artificial light situations. The very fast AF system is remarkable under low light. The sharpness and colors are extraordinary. Before the D4, I used a D300. You can't compare a DX to FX, but I can can say the differences are really noticeable. The D4 has made me a better action sports photographer.
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23 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It's a Pip!!! An expensive one, April 9, 2012
This review is from: Nikon D4 16.2 MP CMOS FX Digital SLR with Full 1080p HD Video (Body Only) (OLD MODEL) (Electronics)
Got one of the first ones out based on the glowing reviews and being an owner of several Nikon dSLR bodies; from the D70 up through the D3x/s cameras.

This takes the best of all of them and puts them in one body. The D4 relies heavily on the control dials, and most are intuitive. Spo changing settings can be done quickly.

Take the exceptional resolution of the D3x and add the superb low light performance of the D3s; then make it all faster and better, and you have a D4.

I was worried that I would feel "eh" about this camera, but my reaction is far from that. If you have some good Nikkor glass, or want to start at the pinnacle of digital photography for under $10,000, the D4 meets your needs with aplomb.

I may be poorer, but am delighted with this purchase.

note: I would have bought from Amazon, but they weren't expecting stock, so I went with a reliable authorized dealer. I like buying from Amazon though as they are very generous with returns should a problem exist; and even with $6,000 bodies, problems do crop up, even when new.

If you want your photos to be as good as they can be, and can afford the entry fee, this is the camera

If $6,000 is too much and speed is not crucial, the D800 or D800e probably do nicely at half the cost.

Remember this is a FX format, so no multiplying focal lengths by 1.5x. The sensor is the size of a 35mm negative.

Focusing is also faster on the D4. It's all good.

Delighted with this purchase

(D700, D3s, and D3x for sale. Used. Perfect condition)
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant images and so easy to use; simply outstanding in low light, June 20, 2012
This review is from: Nikon D4 16.2 MP CMOS FX Digital SLR with Full 1080p HD Video (Body Only) (OLD MODEL) (Electronics)
Hankk has done a brilliant, detailed review of this camera above so I won't go into any of the details that he has so well covered. I will however sing the praises of the D4 from a slightly different approach.

I had a D700 that I loved, and which I intended to keep as a spare in case I had problems with the D4. So I took the D4 away on a couple of trips and immediately fell in love with it; essentially because of its brilliant image quality. It is also easier to use than the D700 but that was a secondary benefit.

However on a fishing trip I took the D700 instead of the D4 and, try as I may, I often could not get the same image quality as the D4. I suppose this should not be surprising but the difference was such that I decided I just would not be happy enough with my D700 images any more - and if I had issues with the D4 I would hire another one. That's how good the D4 is; it made me get rid of my highly regarded D700 and now I do not even have a back-up!

UPDATED FEBRUARY 2013 after safari experience - shutter noise; great low light performance.

While on safari with several pro photographers and amateurs who were shooting Canon 1DX cameras, my D4 shutter was a bit noisier than theirs. This included action in an animal hide, where we were all very sensitive to noise because some birds fly away on the slightest sound. Sometimes I was worried that I might prejudice my colleagues' ability to get the perfect shot.

However the D4 seemed noticeably more capable in low light. I don't want to start a comparison war but, in the situation we faced, the 1DX shooters (using typically F2.8 lenses) had all stopped shooting because of the low light (the guy next to me complaining that he could no longer get auto focus), while I was able to shoot on auto focus for 10 minutes or more later (using the 200-400mm F4, which should have allowed in less light than their lenses).

This was very impressive camera performance, which allowed me to take some amazing early evening shots of lion cubs feeding with the mothers.

UPDATED FURTHER - AUGUST 2013 after another safari - brilliant low light performance

My respect for this camera continues to grow. I've just returned from another safari, where I was able to continue shooting (with a 200-400mm F4 lens) well after my 2 friends shooting with 1DX's had to stop shooting with their 200-400's. I was able to shoot (via auto focus) much later than them, in an exciting situation where a leopard was stalking impalas in very low light.

Never mind theoretical comparisons: a situation like that shows what opportunities a great camera is capable of delivering when conditions are really challenging. The D4 is brilliant in low light - it gave me some "keeper" photos that illustrated the excitement and tension of the situation which others seemed unable to get.

To show that I'm not biased towards Nikon, I would add that my wife, who was shooting with a D800, also had to stop shooting through lack of light while the D4 kept on taking great shots. I love this camera ...
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51 of 63 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The camera i've always wanted., March 27, 2012
This review is from: Nikon D4 16.2 MP CMOS FX Digital SLR with Full 1080p HD Video (Body Only) (OLD MODEL) (Electronics)
I will attempt to keep this short because there are a lot of reviews of this camera and I only want to give my nonprofessional feedback. I don't take photo's for a living, in fact I take photos of my life which to me is equally as valuable. I am preparing to have children, get married, you know the American dream. I need to capture these precious moments as accurately as I can, this is the reason I purchased the D4.

For me, the low light performance is key - anyone can take decent pictures with point and clicks in the daytime, and most any camera can take excellent creative shots if the user understands his or her camera. What I have a problem with the most is low light photography, taking pictures of friends and family using existing light. I might be in my house, out at a party, or enjoying a camp fire out in the woods. For these situations I need to be able to take clear and accurate photos which to me means increased ISO sensitivity, maintaining freeze frame shutter speeds, and with the combination of the two capturing a crisp and colorful shot each and every time. I can't tell you how many times I've thrown away those perfect moments because of camera shake or overall subject movement. So for the money, I needed something that could do all of this and out of all the cameras I was left with two options, the Nikon D3s and the Nikon D4.

Why the D4 over the D3s? Even though the D3s is 1/6th a stop improved sensor sensitivity I am set on the 16mp over 12mp improvement, set on the dynamic range, set on it being new and an overall improved camera. 30 minutes of 60FPS video capture, better low light metering, better color. For me, this camera has exceeded my expectations and truly captured my imagination and excitement each and every time I go out to shoot.

I have played with every setting so far except the web server via Wi-Fi/Ethernet and the in camera HDR. I prefer to Bracket my HDR shots and post process them, what I love about the speed of this camera is I can bracket all 9 shots hand held in under 1 second - seriously. In fact for continuous shooting this thing is simply impressive, with the XQD card that came with the camera I can take something like 75 shots before the 10 raws per second slows down due to buffer limit being reached.

The colors are amazing, the shutter sounds awesome, I can't tell you how much I love this imaging beast. Thank you Nikon!
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