Nikon announces D4 dSLR, successor to D3S pro shooter (CES 2012)

Nikon announces D4 dSLR, successor to D3S pro shooter (CES 2012)

Summary: Nikon officially announces the long-rumored D4 professional dSLR, which will hit the market earlier and at a lower price than the Canon EOS-1D X.


It's an announcement Nikon followers have been predicting forever, so it's no huge surprise, but the Nikon D4 has offically arrived, adding a big-name dSLR to the growing pre-CES 2012 camera release lineup. Nikon Rumors reports that sold out of Nikon D4 pre-orders in under an hour, a testament to how little of a secret the announcement was.

Though the D4's most direct competitor, the Canon EOS-1D X, was announced in October, Nikon's flagship professional dSLR looks to just beat the Canon to market, and will sell for about $800 less, listing at $5,999.95 when it ships in late February. The18-megapixel 1D X does out-spec the 16-megapixel D4 slightly; the D4 offers a slower maximum continuous shooting speed of 11fps (vs. 14fps for the 1D X), a slighly lower resolution 3.2-inch LCD, and fewer autofocus points, but it does bring the Nikon line up to date on all fronts, including a significantly beefed up video recording mode compared to its predecessor, the Nikon D3S. In fact, somewhat like the Canon 1D X is a cross between the higher-end 1Ds Mark III and 1D Mark IV, the D4 sits between the D3S and the higher-end D3X. As the newest camera, the D4 benefits from the latest technology, of course, and is the first dSLR to support the new high-performance QXD memory card format (based on PCI Express) from the CompactFlash Association.

Here's a quick comparison of basic specs with the Canon EOS-1D X:

Nikon D4 Canon EOS-1D X
Price $5999.95 (body only), shipping in late February $6,800 (body only), shipping in March
Sensor 16.2 megapixels, 36x23.9 mm CMOS 18.1 megapixels, 36x24mm CMOS
Continuous Shooting Speed 11 fps 14 fps
LCD 3.2-inch, 920,000-dot 3.2-inch, 1.04 million-dot
Autofocus 51-point 61-point
Sensitivity ISO 100-12,800 (50-204,800 expanded) ISO 100-51,200 (50-204,800 expanded)
Storage Media 2 Compact Flash (Type I, QXD) 2 CompactFlash (Type I/II)
Movie Mode 1920×1080 (30/24 fps)/1280 × 720 (60/30 fps) 1920x1080 (30/25/24 fps)/1280x720 (60/50 fps)/640x480 (30/25 fps)
Dimensions 6.3x6.2x3.6 inches 6.2x6.4x3.3 inches
Weight 41.6 oz (body) Not available
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  • I am always bugged by those $0.05 values to say "We are less than 6K"

    Nikon, dude, call it 6K and save the ink.

    First time Canon and Nikon have really gone head to head on their pro DSLR line.

    I want one o' dem 1D X bodies. If I had Nikon lenses, I would want one o' dem D4 bodies. Both look sweet.
    • Must outlaw these .9x price tags

      @Bruizer Agreed, there should be a law to forbid these stupid prices at x.99. Yeah, I have heard about the trick to give the impression that the product is cheaper. But seriously, can anyone be fooled by $199.99 vs $200 ?
      • RE: Nikon announces D4 dSLR, successor to D3S pro shooter (CES 2012)

        @RelaxWalk : I've "trained" myself that anything in the .9x [i.e. .99, .98 ...] is rounded up to the next buck.
  • Errr....

    Saw the specs on the D4. Who wants what some describe as a multimedia camera when the microphone is in mono only?
    • Simple....


      If this is used in a professional setting (think House being "filmed" with the 5D Mk II), the standard mics are used only for syncing the primary sound mics to the clip. So the basic audio (for the target audience) is for utility more than final production.

      These are very high end sensors where the primary point of the camera is to capture stunning images. Sound will be captured with a secondary device.
    • RE: Nikon announces D4 dSLR, successor to D3S pro shooter (CES 2012)

      @Gisabun If you want to make high end video with stereo audio, buy a VIDEO CAMERA. Honestly, I see video on ANY STILL CAMERA as little more than a gimmick for amateurs. Right up there with cell phones. You could probably shave $300 - $400 off any high end DSLR just by eliminating it. I have used D3's semi-professionally for several years and never once wished I had video.
  • Let's get robbed by Nikon.

    $6k for 16megapixels. Must be trying to make up for losses during the thai floods by charging their loyal customer base an arm and leg. For 20% of that price you can get a camera with all those capabilities. Oh perhaps they want you to pay the extra 5k for those "advanced features" which basically means some internal software tweaks. disappointed in this company.
    • RE: Nikon announces D4 dSLR, successor to D3S pro shooter (CES 2012)

      @wagnergoldberg The Nikon has an INSIGNIFICANT 2MP less than the Canon. I challenge you to distinguish between two images taken of the same subject at the same time by both cameras. You will NOT be able to do it. And the Canon costs $800 more so your argument has no merit. <br><br>I cut my photography teeth in the early 1970's when all there was, was film. To this day I still consider film to be "true" photography. The one thing I have noticed with so many people nowadays is that they get wrapped around the axle with minutae of specs. It is not the CAMERA which makes an image, it is the person behind it. The camera is simply a tool with which to record the image.
    • RE: Nikon announces D4 dSLR, successor to D3S pro shooter (CES 2012)

      @wagnergoldberg exactly which camera that cost 20% can do what the D4 does?