Nikon D4

Nikon has announced their upcoming full-frame dSLR, the D4. The very short version is: It’s $6,000, and worth every penny for those in the market for a professional camera body. It has all the cool features you’d expect: ISO up to 204,800, 16.2MP, 51-point Autofocus system, 10fps high-speed shooting, HD video (1080px30 or 24fps) etc. The Nikon D4 is also the first camera of any kind to support the XQD memory card format, which promises very fast speeds in a compact card. The relatively pedestrian 16MP spec is very interesting to us. Along with the recent Canon 1D X, it signals a slow-down of the Megapixel race, and a focus back on “Quality over quantity” of the sensors. Promo video is below, but don’t stop there, as the really fun parts follow the video.

Now for the really cool stuff, since you asked us. There’s a full-size RJ45 network jack built in to the camera. This is awesomely nerdy, and frankly very useful. It enables uploading straight to servers, ftp sites, etc, and means you don’t need a computer as the first step in your workflow. But wires are soooo 2002, so there’s an optional WiFi module that lets you do the same stuff, and much more, without wires. In fact, the wifi module allows for what we find to be the coolest feature of all, which is the HTTP mode. Basically, you set up the wifi, connect with *any* web-enabled device, and you gain full control over the camera. You get control over shooting mode, metering mode, white balance, live view, iso, focus point, shutter of course, recording format, and the ability to preview the shots you’ve already taken on a larger screen. Since we’re involved in a local stage production right now, our first thought was how awesome it would be to have a camera right up on stage, where a photographer wouldn’t fit, and have full control of the camera from an off-stage location, such as the sound booth. Being GadgetFeast, of course our next thought was that we’d also want to find or rig up a remote controlled tripod head with pan/tilt functions. Turns out that someone already makes those, so we could be in total geek heaven.

For further reading, we suggest heading over to DPReview’s announcement. Availability will begin in March.