Thursday, November 16, 2006

Nikon Introduces D40 Digital SLR

Nikon today officially introduced the D40 that has been the subject of the rumor mill in recent weeks, billing the 6.1 megapixel camera as the smallest and easiest to use in its lineup of digital SLRs and clearly aiming the new model at the low end of the amateur market.

“Digital SLR cameras have gained substantial interest among consumers looking for higher-quality pictures and faster handling response," said Edward Fasano, general manager for marketing of SLR System Products at Nikon Inc. "But perceived complexity and bulkiness of some models has discouraged some customers. With the D40, Nikon addresses these challenges with incredible ease of use, compactness and a remarkable range of features and technologies.”

The D40 will come packaged with a new 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G ED II AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor lens with ED glass and aspherical elements, with suggested street price of $599.95. The model is intended to replace the current D50, which sells for about $650 street. Nikon did not say how soon the new camera will be available.

The camera features a 6.1 megapixel Nikon DX Format CCD image sensor and Nikon’s 3D Color Matrix Metering II with spot metering, center-weighted metering and exposure compensation along with Program Auto, Shutter-priority Auto, Aperture-priority Auto and Manual (P/S/A/M) exposure modes. “Digital Vari-Program” modes include Auto, Portrait, Landscape, Close-Up, Sports, Night Landscape or Night Portrait.

The D40 powers up in 0.18 seconds and shoots 2.5 frames per second up to 100 consecutive shots in JPEG Normal mode, stored on an SD card and viewed on a 2.5-inch color LCD monitor. The new model uses a three-area auto-focus system based around Nikon's Multi-CAM 530 AF Sensor Module with central cross-type sensor operation.

The ISO range is 200-1600 with an "additional" setting of 3200. Shutter speeds are 30 seconds to 1/4000 with flash sync to 1/500.

The D40 also features an Image Retouch menu, with extensive in-camera editing functions. Options include:

• D-Lighting: Automatically balances underexposed portions of an image to enhance detail without affecting highlights.
• In-camera Red-eye Correction.
• Trim: Images can be trimmed to produce smaller cropped versions of any file on the SD card.
• Image Overlay: Merges a pair of selected RAW files to create a composite image within the camera as a RAW or JPEG file.
• Monochrome settings: Convert any color image to black-and-white, sepia or cyanotype.
• Filter Effects: Emulate and apply the effects of a skylight or a warming filter to any image stored on the SD card. A Color Balance menu within filter effects can also be used to make subtle shifts in color.
• Small Picture: Create a smaller version of any image in the camera for easy sharing and faster download.

The D40 ships with Nikon’s PictureProject software and a 30-day trial version of Capture NX software.

Dimensions are 5x2.5x3.7 inches and weight is 17 ounches.

Click here to read the Nikon press release

Click here for full technical specifications

Copyright 2006


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