Congratulations Nikon, great 1080 HD FX video, but why only 16 MP?

Started Jan 6, 2012 | Discussions thread
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ScottMac
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Congratulations Nikon, great 1080 HD FX video, but why only 16 MP?
Jan 6, 2012

I mean that sincerely. And people looking for 1080 HD FX have to be really happy because clearly Nikon put more focus and tech into the video than they did into the stills, especially being only 16 MP, no offense to video haters, but really, you have to admit, Nikon is embracing FX video BIG TIME with the D4.

But I question the 16 MP on several levels. The first is why is Canons 1DX 18 MP, and why is it still months away? Is it possible that Nikon had this camera nearly built a long time ago, and at that time, they thought 16 MP was plenty higher than 12 MP, because you know, it isn't, imho. Canon's 1 DX, being newer, found the tech to do high iso IQ and still have a 50% bump in MP from 12? Maybe, but the 1DX is not tested yet.

I know many of you are going to say there is no difference between 12, 16 and 18 MP... seriously? Wrong, especially for stock, advertising, cropping and overall IQ. If you say 12,16 and 18 are the same then you may as well say 21 and 24 are the same too, they are all the same... ridiculous. 12 MP to 18 is a 50% increase, that means it's a big difference, period.

Why does it matter? Well, there are just as many people interested in high MP as there are in ultra low light IQ. I asked several photog friends who have Canon and Nikon glass, which one they would buy, the D4 or the 1DX. Most said the 1DX because it was 18 MP. But they also said the D4 video looks on paper to be better than the 1DX although they pointed out the 1DX specs are not firm yet and no one has shot the camera. A lot of people have shot the D4. Personally, these two cameras are nearly identical, but I have way more Nikon glass, so I would buy the D4, especially because of the 1080 HD.

But obviously, the people who are interested in the D4 are users of the D3s, or least they wanted to buy a D3s. So let me ask you, since many of you say you don't care about video, will you buy the D4 for that 1 stop better high iso and 4 MP upgrade? I think I know your answer, that there is more to IQ and overall spec than just 4 MP and 1 stop high iso IQ. Okay, I agree, and I think the D4 needs to be tested correctly and obviously that will take time. But here's another question, why did Nikon chose 16 MP and not 18 MP, when Canon did pick 18 MP. Believe me, over at the Canon forum they are acting like these two cameras are head to head nearly identical, spec and price.

I think the answer has to do with high iso IQ but also with what other FX is coming next, and it's price. So does 2 more MP make the canon $800 more... maybe? Did Nikon pick 16 MP over 18 MP to get a cleaner high iso IQ? Did they not chose 18 MP because they think the buyers of the D4 want still relatively low MP for the kind of work they do? Maybe. Or is it that at 18 MP Nikon starts to perceive this camera as a high MP camera and they know their next FX will be a new high MP camera, 21 or 24 MP, and they don't want the D4 to be so close that the two might conflict? I think that's very possible.

If the D4 was 18 MP and the next FX from Nikon is 21 or 24 MP that is not a 50% improvement in MP, is it? But 18 to 36 is, right, except Nikon chose 16 MP. But 50% over 16 MP is 24 MP and that's what I think the next Nikon high MP will be, 24 MP and 1080 HD, and it will not be called a D800, it will be called an all new camera with an all new designation, and if priced correctly, meaning under $4,000, it will be a huge seller.

Do I think it's coming in February, no. Do I want it to be announced in February, yes. Ironically, one thing the D800 rumor did do, possibly, is stop a lot of people from buying the D3X, if they were thinking of doing so. No one is going to buy an $8,000 24 MP with no video if they think Nikon is about release a new 24 MP with 1080 HD. I would think Nikon HAS to know this. And really, what could change this fence sitting except a new high MP FX coming to market? The only other thing that could get potential buyers back to the no video D3X for $8,000 is if no new high MP FX appeared at all, and we all know that's not going to happen, right?

Canon EOS-1D Nikon D3S Nikon D3X Nikon D4 Nikon D800
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