rediff.com

NewsApp (Free)

Read news as it happens
Download NewsApp

Available on  

Rediff News  All News 
Rediff.com  » Business » Will price kill Nikon's 'budget' FX camera in India?

Will price kill Nikon's 'budget' FX camera in India?

Last updated on: September 24, 2012 10:18 IST

Will price kill Nikon's 'budget' FX camera in India?

     Next

Next
Devjyot Ghoshal in New Delhi

Opening disclaimer: This correspondent uses a Nikon DSLR, with no intention of changing allegiance, especially now that the Japanese photography powerhouse is out with its new 'budget' full-frame, the D600.

Personal preferences notwithstanding, even many Canon aficionados will find it difficult to resist the charms of the rival's new offering and some may be even considering crossing the pricey Rubicon.

But, what makes the D600 so very special?

Click NEXT to read further. . .


Image: Nikon D600.
Photographs: Courtesy, http://www.nikonusa.com

     Next

Will price kill Nikon's 'budget' FX camera in India?

Prev     Next
Prev

Next

For a camera that's been often called one of the photographic world's worst kept secrets in recent years, the D600 was supposed to be a near-perfect combination of a solid full-frame camera and affordability.

Much of that is because of one term: Full-frame.

That means the D600 has an image sensor about the same size as that of a 35mm film, which used to be the norm back in the day before the digital revolution.

Theoretically, that should make the D600 deliver better image quality across the board, particularly low-light performance, compared to, for instance, the Nikon D7000, a great camera in its own right but with a smaller APS-C sensor size.

This, it does.

Yet, the problem with full-frames is that while they almost always mean better photographic capability, the payoff is that the cameras are bulkier and mandatorily more expensive.

The latter is a price that anyone who isn't a professional doesn't necessarily want to pay.

But with the serious-enthusiast market booming and the race for a affordable full-frame on, this is gap that the Nikon D600 was made to fill -- and it has, somewhat.

Click NEXT to read further. . .


Photographs: Courtesy, http://www.nikonusa.com
Tags: D600 , APS-C , D7000 , Nikon

Prev     Next

Will price kill Nikon's 'budget' FX camera in India?

Prev     Next
Prev

Next

Locked and loaded

To begin the verdict, let's start with the specifications.

The D600 packs in a massive 24.3 mega pixels, a full-frame Nikon FX CMOS sensor, a super-quick EXPEED 3 image-processing engine and an ISO range from 100 to 6400, 39 focus points, a top-speed of 5.5 frames per second continuous burst shooting, a nice 3.2 inch LCD and two SD card slots.

All this, packed inside a body that weighs only 760 grammes (without battery)!

Out of the box and gripped-in-hand, the D600 feels comfortable and fairly snug, and a slightly extended ridge below the shutter-release button definitely improves the hold.

The body, built around a magnesium alloy frame feels solid, with enough rubber around to ensure it doesn't slip off a sweaty palm on a hot, humid day.

It's also weather-sealed, so technically capable of taking a little beating.

Built more or less on the D7000 template, controls are fairly easy to access; although there are a couple of tweaks, including a new centre lock button on the mode selection dial and a dedicated video record button.

Click NEXT to read further. . .


Photographs: Courtesy, www.nikonusa.com
Tags: D600 , ISO , D7000 , LCD

Prev     Next

Will price kill Nikon's 'budget' FX camera in India?

Prev     Next
Prev

Next

In terms of actual performance, it delivers.

The packed specifications deck churn out images that are clean and crisp, with great delivery even in low-light conditions.
The autofocus is quick, and the Nikkor 24-85 f/3.5-4.5G ED VR lens, that came bundled with the D600 reviewed by Business Standard, proving fairly versatile and quite sharp. Some shots needed a bit of exposure compensation but overall it puts out enough to keep even the most critical of shutterbugs happy.

That said, it doesn't have everything that the top end of the Nikon stable contains -- but then, it's not supposed to be the D4 either.

Where it's likely to challenge even the best is on video.

Click NEXT to read further. . .


Photographs: www.nikonusa.com

Prev     Next

Will price kill Nikon's 'budget' FX camera in India?

Prev     Next
Prev

Next

With full HD video at 1920x1080 and 30 fps, it has the technical wherewithal, but more than that it's the ability to monitor audio, through a dedicated audio-out port (something sorely missing in the D7000) will probably get more than a few multimedia journalists excited.

Price problems and more

But for a camera that was supposed to make the full-frame affordable, one isn't quite sure how successful the D600 will actually be in the subcontinent.

That's because although it retails in the US for $2099 (or about Rs 1,12,000), Nikon says in India it will set you back by Rs 1,35,950 for the body only and Rs 1,63,950 along with the Nikkor 24-84mm kit lens.

That isn't quite easy on the wallet as many had expected it to be.

Click NEXT to read further. . .


Image: A sample photograph taken by Nikon D600.
Photographs: http://www.nikonusa.com
Tags: Nikon , D7000 , D600 , India

Prev     Next

Will price kill Nikon's 'budget' FX camera in India?

Prev     More
Prev

More

The other problem is more technical.

Since it's a part of Nikon's FX range (with the full-frame sensor), the D600 will only accommodate the DX (smaller sensor) lenses but with a crop, which means that although your existing set of Nikon lenses will work, you might have to shell out more money to pick up more expensive FX gear.

Nikon, however, isn't the only player in this 'budget' full frame game.

Archrival Canon has put out the EOS 6D within days of the D600's release.

But since we haven't got our hands on it yet, we can't quite tell you which is better.


Image: A sample photograph taken by Nikon D600.
Photographs: www.nikonusa.com

Prev     More
Source: