Peter Lacus: a "retro" camera with a non-replaceable focusing screen of a dubious quality (for manual focusing) - maybe it's just me, but the viewfinder quality is actually the thing I'd liked the most out of the cameras from the bygone era...
Once in a while I just have to peer through one of my wide-aperture primes attached to my lovely original OM-1n (had it from new), to remind myself of JUST how lovely a viewfinder could look. Pity you need to use a 36-year-old camera to get that feel of being "in" your picture ...
Toccata47: I know three pro's that are using a df to at least back up a d4, (in one case replace). All three circumvent the retro dials in favor of manually programmed buttons and menu diving.
I think this is probably an excellent camera despite the handling hiccups, but the "pro" column in the summary here seems rather well padded, not something I expect to see in a dpr review.
Classic stylingGood blend of traditional and contemporary controlsGives sensible choice for using aperture ring or command dialFairly accessible menu system, considering the camera's complexityScrew-in shutter release socketIn-camera Raw reprocessing
6/12 pro's seem either superfluous, subjective, obvious or even dubious. Given the tone of the review I'm quite surprised to see the camera score as highly as it has.
Lack of time lapse is fairly obvious, considering that video is not supported. Or did you mean an intervalometer? Which is different. And thanks to the threaded shutter button, should be easy to arrange with any number of third-party, mechanical devices.
Biowizard: There is one set of amazing Nikkor lenses that the Df can't accommodate ... and I would KILL for a digital Nikon body that could ... and that's the Nikonos series of waterproof lenses.
C'mon Nikon, make me a DIGITAL NIKONOS. And with today's technology, it should be possible to design it so that it does NOT need to be opened up just to download images (WiFi?) or charge the battery (induction?).
[ed. spelling correction]
The AW1 doesn't go down to 60m unaided. And sure, I have an Oly TG-1, which is pretty much a go-anywhere camera - but its 10m maximum depth rating is again well short of that of my old Nikonos III. Besides which, I was thinking full-frame (D4 sensor) in a Nikonos-mount body, able to use those wonderful underwater Nikkor lenses. Manual focus only, of course, so should be easy to implement.
[edit: correction - mine was the Nikonos III, not IV as I originally said. The III was fully-mechanical, with NO electrics (not even an exposure meter)]
There is one set of amazing Nikkor lenses that the Df can't accommodate ... and I would KILL for a digital Nikon body that could ... and that's the Nikonos series of waterproof lenses.
Biowizard: This is very "Apple": they did this with their iOS device interface, where first the depracated one of the pins that used to carry analogue audio, giving it a new digital function, and then a couple of years later, when they binned the interface altogether for the new, sleeker "lightning" connector.
A number of third-party add-on companies got badly burned: one, in particular (Blue, who make microphones) had just brought out a high quality stereo mic for the iPhone, complete with free matching recording app. Within weeks, the mic was made obsolete by the change in pin assignment. So Blue continued to work on a Digital mic instead - and just as that was ready, Apple switched to Lightning. Blue have (understandably) gone away in a huff, and have pulled any attempt to produce a mic for iOS, and have stopped developing the app.
The losers are the Users. And Apple, because some of those users will have switched to Android to avoid this kind of crap. Another reason I will stick to Olympus.
Big difference here guys ... YES, Oly has come out with new mounts. BUT they also fully support the old ones with adapters. My 1976 OM-1n and its 4 prime Zuiko lenses has lasted me nearly 40 years, still working perfectly. And I could buy the OM-D E-M1 tomorrow, plus an adapter, and still use those lenses. What's so bad about that?
There is a MASS of difference between hardware evolution, and sneaky FIRMWARE "UPDATES" that make formerly-compatible kit, suddenly stop working.
abcdefghijklmnop: Help me here, Nikon did not change anything on the existing batteries or lenses we already own. I know since they did not recall mine, at least. So nothing about how the lenses and batteries operate was changed. If the third party makers had done their jobs right and accurately reverse engineered a product this would not have happened. Some of the lenses were sold with a port for lens software update which pretty well confirms to me that the maker knew everything had not been figure out about those lenses by that company. And since all third party lenses and batteries apparently, from reports, have not been affected does that not also point so sloppy engineering by some.
The whole point of allowing firmware updates is to allow unforeseen issues to be fixed and/or new features to be added. Designing a lens (or anything) with the ability to update firmware is NOT a sign of shoddy design - quite the opposite: it suggests a manufacturer with at least half an eye on future-proofing. The shame here, is that NIKON (not the third parties) has taken the opportunity to render some third-party stuff incompatible. And that is naughty.
This is very "Apple": they did this with their iOS device interface, where first the depracated one of the pins that used to carry analogue audio, giving it a new digital function, and then a couple of years later, when they binned the interface altogether for the new, sleeker "lightning" connector.
Amrbeethoven2: is it fisheye ?
No - read the text, it says "Rectilinear" ..
What I'd kill for (ok, not quite, but you get the drift) would be a digital, full-frame Nikonos body. Complete with the old, manual focus lenses. And preferably with external connections (charging/data transfer) which did not require disassembly or even the removal of a hatch or plug. After all, if my electric toothbrush can be charged via induction, why not my camera? And who needs USB if WiFi is well implemented?
Thanks Andy for your personal view. As a lifelong OlyMan (bought my OM-1N in 1976, and still use it sometimes), I so want to stay with this marque. My E-1 is nearly 10 years old now, and still going strong as my main camera, and while I had been hoping for a "perfect E-7", more and more I am getting caught up in the buzz about the E-M1. Your enthusiasm in this review might just get me into the car on Monday morning to head down to Park Cameras!
Does this early cut-price offer indicated that the CC "rental" concept was a comparative flop?
Am I the only person wondering WTF this has to do with Digital Photography?
What's sorely missing is a wind-on lever - that would complete the retro look and feel. Better still - link it to a highly-geared flywheel and generator within the body, and you could self-power the photos! CIPA Battery Life of Infinity?
Re. the design (IMHO):
PLUS POINTS: dials galore for traditional setting of exposure, full-frame, classic design, threaded cable release socket
MINUS POINTS: pressed-metal top plate would have graced my Zenit-E, leatherette on the pentaprism, no split-screen or microprism for manual focusing
Olympus' take on "retro" with the E-M1 seems more forward looking - if that isn't an oxymoron!
carabas: Am I the only one finding it hilarious and ironic that Nikon unleashes this monstrosity on Raymond Loewy's birthday ?
Wonderful comment! And yes, brilliant irony! :-)
vin 13: The faux leather around the pentaprism area and on the dial on the front looks horrid, especially on the silver model. Otherwise I think it looks ok, if a bit on the chunky side.
Yeah, I was thinking that. In fact, it's one of those design features of old 70's Nikons that I thought was really ugly back then too! Leatherette should have been buried forever back in about 1950!
cinemascope: I was just thinking a bit more about this camera...How dare they put a 1/4000 shutter in this and try to charge $3K for it?Honestly...How much extra would a "proper" shutter would have cost? 3 dollars?Enough of this artificial crippling and methodical segmentation...Maybe the Japanese need to start thinking outside the box a little bit more...Huge opportunity lost here...Sad really...
Perhaps the slower shutter is to try to stop it from spraying oil over that lovely D4 sensor ...
I love the IDEA of an analogue-dial-controlled DSLR. But this looks unbelievably clunky. I bought an OM-1n back in1976, rather than a high-end Canon or Nikon, because it felt streamlined, sophisticated, and took amazing photos with what turned out to be some of the best glass available back then (the wonderful Zuiko primes). Nikon and Canon were making behemoths that weighed half a ton, and even got tennis players angry at Wombledon because of the noise and clatter they made (Olympus famously pushed out a full-spread ad for the OM-1 the day after Ilie Năstase flicked his towel at the photographers, with the slogan, "A camera quiet enough even for Romanian tennis players", or somesuch - but I digress).
The Df reminds me most of the Contax RTS III, which was a very bulky 35mm SLR, largely due to its "vacuum back" designed to suck film flat over the pressure plate. A body this size could reasonably contain a larger sensor than 35mm - medium format, mmm, now that would be tempting!
Haim Hadar: In the 'retro' spirit, Nikon should add a feature that blackens the photos in the camera if you open the back cover by mistake while shooting. I'm sure that the firmware can handle this.
Of course, since you are shooting "reversal" "film" (ie, positive images), opening the back would WHITEN the film! :-)
Oooh Salivating ... a "real" body with a metal-barrelled Zeiss Prime on the front ... at last, a CAMERA rather than a blob of plastimetal!