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Nikon D70, six megapixels, $1000 digital SLR

Jan 28, 2004 at 06:03 GMT

Pre-PMA 2004: Nikon today announced details of its $1000 D70 digital SLR. The D70 appears to be based around either the same or a similar CCD as the D100's (not LBCAST as some had predicted). Body design is also very similar to the D100, a few of the new design hints such as the triangular red stripe on the hand grip come from the D2H. This clearly opens up the entry level digital SLR market yet further providing real competition to the Canon EOS 300D. The D70 will cost $999 as body only and $1299 with the new 18 - 70 mm DX lens.

Click here for our detailed Nikon D70 preview
(includes detailed specifications and more images)

Press Release:

Nikon D70

Bringing a new level of high performance with efficient handling, the full excitement of Nikon digital SLR photography, and unrivalled Nikon quality within your reach!

TOKYO – Nikon Corporation is pleased to announce the introduction of a new interchangeable-lens digital SLR camera that delivers Nikon's patented digital and photographic performance, high resolution, sharp detail and accurate, vivid color combined with a new level of advanced functions and automated operation that all can enjoy: the Nikon D70.

Continuing the heritage of hallmark Nikon digital performance established with the launch of the D1 and successful introduction of the Nikon DX Format in1999, the D70 stands ready to expand the digital SLR camera market in Nikon's next step toward satisfying a vastly wider audience.

Designed for a broad range of customers, from novices to serious and experienced photo enthusiasts, the D70 allows photographers to easily adopt digital technology into their existing camera system, or to begin building a system that will bring ongoing enjoyment in the future.

The D70 employs the popular Nikon DX Format sensor and Nikon F lens mount design. This maintains seamless compatibility with all AF Nikkor lenses while allowing photographers to take full advantage of high quality DX Nikkor lenses designed exclusively for Nikon's D-series digital SLR cameras and optimized to achieve outstanding center-to-edge-to-corner image quality. Developed concurrently as a perfect match for daily use with the D70 and compatible with all Nikon D-Series SLR models, the new AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor 18-70mm f/3.5-4.5G IF-ED combines top performance and outstanding value.

The D70 is ready to use the instant it is turned on. The 5-area autofocus system is fast and precise, and includes an AF-assist illuminator to help maximize performance even in dark shooting conditions. And, it can shoot a rapid 3 frames per second for a continuous burst of 144 pictures (when using JPEG NORMAL - Large settings, and a SanDisk SDCHF256MB CompactFlash™ card) thanks to improved buffer memory handling, faster image processing, increased memory card access speed and greater system bus bandwidth.

Controls are located for easy access and smooth operation. Menus are presented clearly and in plain language on the large LCD monitor. All the camera's systems have been optimized to deliver quick response. And, innovative new shooting options have been added to simplify the photographic process, whether controlled manually or via advanced automatic operation. Of particular note are Nikon's seven new automated Digital Vari-Program selections accessed from the new Mode dial for a combination of personal control and powerful automatic operation that helps achieve great results under even complex shooting conditions.

Shutter speeds of 30 to 1/8,000 sec. ensure full creative control. The built-in auto pop-up flash can synchronize at shutter speeds of up to 1/500 sec. for great fill flash effects. Sensitivity can be set between ISO 200 to 1600 or controlled automatically across the same range of settings to maximize available light.

A new 6.1 effective megapixel Nikon DX Format CCD image sensor featuring wider dynamic range and a higher signal to noise ratio produces 3,008 x 2,000-pixel images with high resolution and superbly sharp details suited for making large prints, or for cropping for creative detail.

The D70's advanced System LSI processor is programmed for next generation performance to produce the finest in vivid colors and clarity, while maximizing the speed of file compression, memory buffer handling, simultaneous recording of JPEG and NEF (Nikon Electronic Format) files, and near-instant LCD image display.

Nikon's acclaimed 3D Color Matrix Meter with 1,005-pixel sensor assures accurate auto TTL white balance. Six different manual white balance modes, preset white balance, and white balance bracketing are also available for full creative control. Exposure compensation and flash exposure compensation combine with auto exposure bracketing to further aid in achieving the perfect shot.

The rechargeable high-energy EN-EL3 lithium-ion battery that earned high acclaim in the D100 delivers the power to shoot up to 2,000 images(1) on a single charge. And, the D70 also comes with a battery holder that lets you use disposable batteries as well, should the need or desire arise.

Diverse playback options, versatile custom settings, a USB interface for easy connectivity or direct printing to any PictBridge compatible printer, and a bevy of other features packed into the lightest and most compact Nikon digital SLR camera to date make the D70 the best performing camera in its class.

The Nikon D70 beautifully combines the best of digital technology with quick and efficient camera handling. Add to this the advantages of Nikon's Total Imaging System, from high-quality AF, AF-S and DX Nikkor lenses and advanced Speedlight technologies to powerful software that will empower and inspire the shutterbug in everyone, and you are sure to enjoy Nikon digital SLR photography and superb pictures that are vivid and accurate in color, and crisp and clean in detail.

Sales release schedule: Nikon Corporation will launch the D70 worldwide in March 2004.

Note: Specifications, design, product name and standard accessories may differ by country or area

Click here for our detailed Nikon D70 preview
(includes detailed specifications and more images)