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  • Nikon Announces D3200 Digital SLR Camera, WU-1a Wireless Mobile Adapter and AF-S NIKKOR 28mm f/1.8G Lens

    We are pleased to report that Nikon has just announced three new imaging products. A new Nikon D3200 DX-format Digital SLR Camera, WU-1a Wireless Mobile Adapter for the Nikon D3200, and a new AF-S NIKKOR 28mm f/1.8G lens that is compatible with FX-format cameras.

    Nikon D3200 Digital SLR Camera

    Nikon D3200 Digital SLR Camera

    The Nikon D3200 is engineered to provide an impressive 24.2 effective megapixels, and captures sharp images - even in low-light. With Full HD 1080p at 30/24p video capture including stereo sound and powered by the new EXPEED 3 image processor, the same powering as the acclaimed Nikon D4, the Nikon D3200 offers enthusiasts the opportunity to enjoy superior image quality and high quality HD video at entry level pricing.

    The Nikon D3200 will start selling with a retail price of $699.95. It will also be available in both black and red colors. The Nikon D3200 is available for purchase from our website here.

    Nikon WU-1a Wireless Mobile Adapter

    Nikon WU-1a Wireless Mobile Adapter

    Everyone wants to share their images. Simply download a new sharing app, purchase an innovative new accessory called the WU-1a Wireless Mobile Adapter and have images transferred wirelessly directly to your smart phone from the Nikon D3200! Additionally, let your Smartphone take control of the new Nikon D3200! Live View on the Nikon D3200 shows up wirelessly on your Smartphone LCD - you can even fire the camera from your Smartphone, creating unique picture taking possibilities. This hot new accessory will allow you to take, share and control photographs with greater ease.

    The Nikon WU-1a Wireless Mobile Adapter will start selling with a retail price of $59.95. It will be available in late May.

    Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 28mm f/1.8G Lens

    Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 28mm f/1.8G Lens

    The AF-S NIKKOR 28mm f/1.8G is ideal for shooting stills or recording HD video in low-light situations as well as for travel, landscapes and general photography. This FX-format wide-angle lens includes Nikon's Nano Crystal Coat (N) that virtually eliminates ghost and flare and its Silent Wave Motor delivers ultra-fast, ultra-quiet autofocus operation. On a DX-format camera, this lens has the effective field-of-view of a 42mm lens.

    The Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 28mm f/1.8G Lens will start selling with a retail price of $699.95. It will be available in late May. The  Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 28mm f/1.8G Lens is available from our website here.

  • Nikon D3X vs. Sony A77 ISO Comparison

    Sony SLT-A77 and Nikon D3X Side-by-Side

    Sony A77 and Nikon D3X

    You might be wondering why we would want to compare the Sony A77 and Nikon D3X in terms of ISO performance. A better match might be to compare the Sony A900 to the Nikon D3X. After all, it is rumored the D3X uses a sensor manufactured by Sony. Considering that, and both the A900 and the D3X are 24 megapixel (plus some change) full-frame cameras, one might conclude those are the two cameras to compare. And, especially when you realize the A900 retails for $2700 and the D3X retails for $8000. So, you are probably still wondering, why the A77 and D3X?

    Well, the Sony A77, like the D3X for Nikon when it first came out, is the first camera of its kind. It has a 24 megapixel (plus some change) APS-C sized (1.5x crop) sensor. A lot of people are weary of packing more pixels into a sensor without increasing the sensor size at the same time. The idea is that if each pixel, or photosite, is smaller it will likely get bombarded with more photons of light than a larger photosite in a given amount of time. Oppositely, the smaller photosite is like a "net" and, being a smaller net, it is less likely to capture as many photons in a given instance. So, if you have a lot of light the smaller photosites will get saturated and turn white, and if you don't have much light the photosites will stay dark. Either way, you will have a loss of detail: blown out highlights, and blocked shadows. This may also translate into a noisier or "grainier" image at higher ISOs.

    Our fascination and the reason for comparing these two cameras is to see how the APS-C 24 megapixel sensor of the $1400 Sony A77 compares to the full-frame 24 megapixel sensor of the $8000 D3X. The full-frame size of the 24 megapixel D3X means each individual pixel is physically larger than the pixels of the A77. This means the D3X may likely have greater dynamic range in capturing scenes with more contrast than the A77, but that kind of comparison is not our goal here. We wanted to strictly take a look at the noise levels/sharpness of each.

    Please see the following comparison shots below. We set up a quick scene and shot both cameras with similar settings, changing only the ISO in between each shot. As we used Aperture Priority mode, the exposure evaluation was up to each individual camera. In addition, we shot both cameras at their highest-level JPG setting. How these cameras handle JPG processing may be very different, and seeing the RAW images from these cameras may be a lot different than what you see here. We have included 100% crops, side-by-side. We won't tell you which one was shot by the Sony A77 and which was shot by the Nikon D3x, until you get to the bottom. Which do you think are the A77 images, and which do you think are the D3X?

    Nikon D3X vs. Sony A77 ISO Comparison

    ISO 400

    Nikon D3X vs. Sony A77 ISO Comparison

    ISO 800

    Nikon D3X vs. Sony A77 ISO Comparison

    ISO 1600

    Nikon D3X vs. Sony A77 ISO Comparison

    ISO 3200

    Nikon D3X vs. Sony A77 ISO Comparison

    ISO 6400

    OK, so you are probably wondering which is which? Or, maybe you've already figured it out. The left side of each image is from the Nikon D3X, and the right side of each image is from the Sony A77. We noticed the D3X tends to look sharper (at least in the brush), but at the expense of more noise or "grain". The A77 images look less noisy/grainy at higher ISOs, but it looks like you can't pick out as many bristles in the brush. What do you notice? Which one do you think looks better overall?

  • Thinking about the Nikon D800E? Think About It Some Moire

    Nikon D800E FX Digital SLR Camera

    Nikon D800E

    Our Nikon representative sent us a very interesting article last night. In an email to us he talked about the role of the D800E in digital photography, and for whom the camera might be appropriate for. If you are thinking about purchasing the D800E, that's great! But, please make sure it is appropriate for you. I have copied some of the email our rep sent us, and am providing the link to the article he suggested. If you are interested in the D800E, it is worth checking out.

    "The reality of a DSLR without an Optical Low Pass Filter (OLPF) (the D800E) is for only very specialized usage. I'm cautioning you to really counsel your customers who may think they want a D800E. Unless they have had the experience of shooting medium format digital cameras (they also do not have OLPF) and know that they will need to be in control of many aspects of the shoot. Not always practical for the general, all round photographer. We want you to avoid unhappy photographers who may not understand the control and special attention that would be needed to be used with the D800E, always. There are several discussion groups going on regarding this, even Scott Kelby, PhotoShop expert, said if he had to choose between an OLPF or the FEAR of Moire, he would choose the OLPF."

    Please note that the issue of Moire and Fasle Color are not present in the D800 like they are with the D800E.

    Nikon Article: Moire and False Color

  • New Lower Pricing on the Nikon D700 FX Digital SLR Camera

    It's been over 3 years since the Nikon D700 full-frame digital SLR debuted. Fast forward three years from the summer of 2008 and the D700's image quality still stands at the forefront of today's imaging. The low-light performance of the Nikon D700 is still considered a benchmark from which other cameras are compared.

    Nikon D700 FX Digital SLR Camera

    Nikon D700 with optional lens


    There's no doubt the new Nikon D800 is pushing the barriers of imaging again with the highest megapixel count image sensor Nikon has ever produced in a digital SLR. There is a lot of anticipation building as we wait for the first D800s to arrive, and a lot of photographers have already assumed the D800 is a direct replacement of  the D700.

    Nikon D800 FX Digital SLR Camera

    Nikon D800 with optional lens

    We've talked to Nikon about the issue of the D800 being a replacement of the D700, and they have assured us the D700 isn't going anywhere. In fact, Nikon is committed to D700 sales, and, as a result, Nikon is reducing the price of the Nikon D700 by $500. The new price of the D700 (body only) is a very attractive $2,199.95. Click this link to purchase, or call our retail store at (802) 244-0883.

  • Time For A Firmware Update?

    We have recently seen an increase in camera malfunctions as a result of outdated firmware and the use of newer memory cards. The most common one as of late has been with Nikon's digital SLRs and Coolpix point & shoot cameras, and their compatibility with the newer Sandisk SDHC memory cards. This affects the Coolpix P500, Coolpix L120 and the D5100 DSLR. We have also seen incompatibilities with larger capacity CF (compactflash) memory cards and the Canon EOS 5D (not Mark II). The good news is there is a fix that is simple and free: just update the camera's firmware!

    Here is a list of recent firmware updates for this issue:

    Nikon Coolpix P500 - Firmware Update to 1.1

    Nikon Coolpix L120 - Firmware Update to 1.1

    Nikon D5100 DSLR - Firmware Update to 1.01

    Canon EOS 5D - Firmware Update to 1.1.1

    While it is important to to keep up to date with the latest firmware, there are many cases where the updates are minor and unnoticeable. For full details on all firmware updates you should visit the manufacturers website. Detailed installation instructions are available for any firmware update. Please make sure to follow instructions exactly, and do not begin a firmware update unless you are using a fully charged battery. Visit the following links to see if you are up to date!

    Canon Support 

    Nikon Support

    Sony Support

  • A Common Cause for the Nikon "FEE" Error

    We sell a lot of used lenses over at our used equipment website: Most of the lenses we sell are for either Canon or Nikon. We usually get more questions regarding Nikon lenses, however. In 1987, Canon introduced auto focus cameras and lenses, and switched the then FD lens mount to EF (electro-focus). The manual focus, FD lenses were no longer compatible with new, auto focus camera bodies. The mounts were completely different. It is possible to use FD lenses on an EF camera body, but an adapter is required, and infinity focus is only achieved with the presence of a corrective glass element.

    Canon FD Mount

    Canon FD Mount (courtesy Wikipedia)

    Canon EF Mount

    Canon EF Mount (courtesy of Wikipedia)

    Nikon maintained the same physical mount during the switch from manual to auto focus, however, so things are not so cut-and-dry as with Canon. This creates a bit more confusion among Nikon shooters because they often wonder about the compatibility of older lenses with newer bodies, or newer lenses with older bodies. Many of Nikon's more modern lenses (AF lenses) include a manual aperture ring. Most of Nikon's even more recent lenses, and Canon EF lenses, do not include a manual aperture ring. In this case, the aperture may only be controlled electronically by the camera body.

    If you have a Nikon lens and you are trying to use it on a more modern Nikon camera body, you may just run into the camera displaying an "FEE" error. This error is stating that the camera and the lens are not happy with each other. Essentially, the camera and lens aren't "communicating". If the lens is an auto focus (or "chipped") lens with a manual aperture ring, you may not be out-of-luck. Most likely you need to simply change the aperture to the smallest (largest number) value. This is often designated by being colored orange. Once the aperture is set to the smallest value, the camera is able to control the aperture electronically and everything is happy again.  Note that you cannot use the lens if you change the aperture manually from the smallest value. The aperture must be controlled using the camera's functions, and it must be physically set to the smallest value with the manual aperture ring in order for this to be possible.

    In order to see what we are describing, we made a quick video (see below). In the video you can see that the camera "locks" up when any aperture other than the smallest value is used.

  • Nikon Announces 6 New COOLPIX Cameras (P7100, S6200, S8200, S100, AW100, S1200pj)

    Yesterday we reported on Sony's announcement of some new digital cameras and lenses. While it took most of the day for us to update the blog and our website for these new products, we neglected to report on the introduction of new Nikon Coolpix digital cameras. Unfortunately, as the saying goes, there just aren't enough hours in the day. We have just updated our website with Nikon's new Coolpix's and are now happy to report on their introduction to the world.

    Nikon COOLPIX P7100 Digital Camera

    Nikon COOLPIX P7100 Digital Camera

    The flagship Coolpix model, the P7000, is getting an upgrade with the new Nikon COOLPIX P7100. The Nikon P7100 is not a total revamping of the P7000, which makes sense, otherwise Nikon would have probably named it something like the P8000. The megapixel count and lens (28-200mm equivalent) appear to be untouched. Nikon does state the image processing speed has been increased, in addition to better noise reduction for sharper, cleaner images. Many P7000 users will approve of Nikon's claim that the P7100 will have a "high-speed response with faster power-up time, focus acquisition and shooting time lag...." One issue many P7000 users had was the focus acquisition lag time. Two major physical changes are a new vari-angle LCD for the atypical shooting situation, and a front control knob for quick custom setting changes.

    Nikon P7100 Vari-Angle LCD Monitor

    Nikon P7100 Vari-Angle LCD Monitor

    Nikon has also upgraded the S8100 and S6100 COOLPIX digital cameras with the Nikon Coolpix S8200 (black, silver, red) and Coolpix S6200 (red, black, silver, blue, pink). Again, the small bump in model number suggests some small improvements. The Nikon S8100 was a very popular camera for us and we sold a ton of them. So, we naturally welcome an upgrade to this camera with the hope the S8200's performance will be improved along with the new model number. Both cameras get a longer zoom, which is what made them popular in the first place. The S8200 now boasts a 14x optical zoom (S8100 was 10x), and the S6200 features a 10x zoom (S6100 was 7x). It is quite incredible that Nikon is able to fit such extensive zooms in these cameras considering how compact--especially the S6100/S6200--they are. They really are pocket-able cameras.

    Nikon COOLPIX S8200 Digital Camera

    Nikon COOLPIX S8200 Digital Camera

    Nikon COOLPIX S6200 Digital Camera

    Nikon COOLPIX S6200 Digital Camera

    The S80 has received a kick with the new Nikon Coolpix S100 (red, black, gold, purple). If you are not familiar with the S80, the Nikon S100 continues a long line of compact, touch-screen digital cameras. It wasn't too long ago that these touch screens were low-resolution and not very responsive to touch. The S80 showed us a nice, big, bright, responsive, and detailed screen. The OLED screen we saw in the S80 will again be in the S100, which we welcome because it was a good screen. The S100 styling looks to now be ultra-thin (less than an inch in thickness), and in Nikon's words "Ultra-chic". You can tell from Nikon's marketing this camera was designed for a specific demographic when they use phrases like "dance floor", "curves", etc.. That is not to say this camera cannot be for everyone, however. We have sold the S80 for many specific purposes. The first one that comes to mind is when we sold an S80 to researchers because they wanted to write a tag on each image as they were being taken to later identify the images for the research project being conducted.

    Nikon COOLPIX S100 Touch-Screen Digital Camera

    Nikon COOLPIX S100 Touch-Screen Digital Camera

    It wasn't too long ago that Nikon first introduced the S1000pj. It seemed like that was quickly upgraded with the S1100pj. If you are unfamiliar with these cameras, they are a truly unique crop of technology. These Coolpix cameras feature a built-in projector. The Nikon projector cameras have always been marketed with nostalgia in mind. There was really nothing like getting a group of people together, loading up the slide projector, and having an evening of photo sharing while staring at a wall. The S1000pj and S1100pj attempted to jettison this past time into the present tense. Nikon has now introduced the next generation of these cameras with the Coolpix S1200pj (black, pink). The Nikon S1200pj has now truly launched the projector camera line into this century with the ability to connect directly to iPods and iPhones, and project content like photos and videos from those devices.  With the S1000pj, you were only able to project what was on the camera. Then the S1100pj added the ability to connect other devices. Now the S1200pj is able to do all of that plus connect to handheld devices. This will make the S1200pj more useful for many different types of people than ever. One interesting thing that we have found with these projector cameras is that Artists love them. Go ahead, project details of landscapes, portraits, or whatever, directly on your canvas.

    Nikon COOLPIX S1200pj 14.1 MP Digital Camera with Built-In Projector (Pink)

    Nikon COOLPIX S1200pj Digital Camera with Built-In Projector

    We have intentionally saved the sixth camera of all the new Nikon Coolpix digital cameras for last. With the above five cameras they are all an upgrade, or improvement, on already established camera types. This camera is a brand-new type of Coolpix for Nikon, however, and something we have not seen in Coolpix cameras. The Nikon COOLPIX AW100 (orange, black, blue) is Nikon's first underwater point-and-shoot digital, Coolpix camera. The new AW series is waterproof to a depth of 33 ft., shockproof from a drop of about 5 ft. up, and freezeproof down to about 14 degrees Fahrenheit. In addition, it is packed with features like GPS and "e-Compass". Yes, if you are lost in the woods with this camera, you can find your way out (hopefully) with the built-in compass. The AW100 is 16 megapixels and has a 5x optical zoom lens (non-extending so it can't get bumped and broken). Nikon has introduced a new case to go along with the AW series also, and it features a carabiner for quickly attaching the case to whatever is available.

    Nikon COOLPIX AW100 Waterproof Digital Camera

    Nikon COOLPIX AW100 Waterproof Digital Camera

    Nikon COOLPIX All Weather Sport Case

    Nikon COOLPIX All Weather Sport Case

  • Instant Savings This Week on Select Nikon Products

    Nikon D3100 DSLR with 18-55mm VR Lens
    Nikon D5100 DSLR with 18-55mm VR Lens
    Nikon Coolpix S4100
    Nikon Coolpix L24
    Nikon Coolpix S80
  • Just Announced: Nikon AF-S DX Micro-NIKKOR 40mm f/2.8G Macro Lens

    Nikon AF-S DX Micro-NIKKOR 40mm f/2.8G Macro Lens

    Nikon AF-S DX Micro-NIKKOR 40mm f/2.8G Macro Lens

    Nikon announces a new lens, the AF-S DX Micro-NIKKOR 40mm f/2.8G Macro lens (Nikon Part #2200, UPC 018208022007). This lens is designed for DX, "crop" sensor cameras, like the highly popular D3100, D5100, or D7000. On a DX-format camera the effective field-of-view is equivalent to a 60mm lens. One of Nikon's most popular macro lenses has been the 60mm f/2.8. It only makes sense then for them to come out with a lens like this that has a 60mm equivalent field-of-view for DX camera bodies.

    The tentative release for this lens is sometime in August. We already have our initial order in with Nikon, and when the lens comes in you will be able to purchase it from our website here. If you are interested in pre-ordering, please call our retail store at (802) 244-0883.

    We are excited for this lens to come in for testing. It is the cheapest macro lens we have seen in a long time ($279). When we get one in we will test it out and let you know here, on our blog, our initial thoughts.

  • This Week's Instant Savings on Nikon Digital Cameras and Lenses!

    Nikon Coolpix L24
    Nikon Coolpix S6100
    Nikon Coolpix S80
    Nikon Coolpix S9100
    Nikon D5100 18-55mm VR Lens Kit

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