Nikon's New Digital SLR Shoots HD Videos

Aug 28, 2008
Tomohiro Otsuki, Nikkei Electronics
[Click to enlarge image]

Nikon Corp will release the world's first digital single-lens reflex camera with a high-definition (HD) video shooting function, the "D90," on Sept 19, 2008, in Japan.

Its expected street price is ¥120,000 (approx US$1,101). The D90 is the successor of the "D80."

The camera supports the 720/24p format (1280 x 720 pixels/frame, 24 frames per second). The definition is at the lowest level for HD, but it can produce rich images, taking advantage of the shallow depth of field. (Sample video shot by taking advantage of out-of-focus images, a comparison with general video cameras and more videos are available here.)

The D90 is equipped with an APS-C size CMOS image sensor. The image sensor of the D90 has an area 6.7 times larger than that of a 2/3-inch broadcasting camera.

Focusing when shooting video is done by hand (manual focus). This is because video is shot by swinging up the mirror inside the D90. The light is not supplied to the imaging element used for autofocus shooting of still images. The photometric mode is fixed to a multi-pattern mode.

Other features include:
- Video format: Motion JPEG
- Supports HDMI output
- Equipped with a 3-inch VGA LCD panel with a 170° view angle
- Max sensitivity: ISO 3200
- Shooting based on the results of the face and scene recognition is possible
- Effective sensor resolution: 12.3 million pixels, Image sensor element pitch: Approx 5.3μm
- Dimensions: Approx 132 x 103 x 77mm
- Weight: Approx 620g, excluding battery, etc