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Nikon updates distortion correction data for DSLRs, adding latest lenses

By dpreview staff on Jul 19, 2013 at 18:54 GMT

Nikon has released distortion correction data v1.009, adding support for additional lenses for the D4, D90, D600, D800, D800E, D3100, D3200, D5000, D5100, D5200, D7000 and D7100. The latest update means these cameras can now correct distortion in 107 Nikkor lenses. The latest update includes recent launches such as the Nikon AF-S Nikkor 18-35mm f/3.5-4.5G ED and can be downloaded from Nikon's global website.


Total comments: 24
By HX100V_SN-501251 (7 months ago)

I just want to confirm for those that might be interested ...... on the NIKON D3200, the "Auto Distortion Control" function, when set to "ON" in the camera, DOES indeed correct/affect the NEF/raw file output. It is picked up by ViewNX 2 and shown in the meta data there. Oddly, there is apparently no option there to toggle it off or on. So, once selected in the camera, it is set, at least in ViewNX 2.

Additionally, when "Auto Distortion Control" is set to "ON" in the camera, it reduces the multi-shot buffer from 8 down to 7 when set to RAW only.

The Photo Ninja
By The Photo Ninja (9 months ago)

How about they make better lenses? Distortion gives a photo a different perspective. It's not always bad.

1 upvote
By TeamSG1 (9 months ago)

Would you say it's better to correct in the camera (I have a D7000) or in Lightroom?

By SeeRoy (9 months ago)

What about NX2? It's always puzzled me what the nature of the distortion correction incorporated in this software actually amounts to.

In the case of DxO they generate a table of distortion characteristics in combination with the camera bodies and also the subject distance and FLs. This seems to me to be the perfect approach. They also incorporate volume anamorphosis correction for UWAs.

Now given the Nikon are best placed, having all the relevant data available, it amazes me that they don't incorporate this feature into their own software (yes, I know they outsource it) and trumpet the fact.

If, as it appears, the correction only applies to in-camera JPEGs, er, who the hell thought that up?

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
1 upvote
By olyflyer (7 months ago)

SeeRoy, it is incorporated into CNX2. Have a look next time you are running it.

By crise (9 months ago)

D600 manual, page 217,
Menu- shooting menu- auto distorsion control
"Select On to reduce barrel distortion when shooting with wideangle
lenses and to reduce pin-cushion distortion when
shooting with long lenses (note that the edges of the area
visible in the viewfinder may be cropped out of the final
photograph, and that the time needed to process photographs
before recording begins may increase). This option does not
apply to movies and is available only with type G and D lenses (PC, fisheye, and certain other lenses excluded); results are not guaranteed with other lenses. Before using auto distortion control with DX lenses, select On for Auto DX crop or choose an image area of DX (24×16) 1.5× (090); selecting other options may result in heavily cropped photographs or in photographs with severe peripheral distortion."

First read, then speak!

By peevee1 (9 months ago)

Correction data for a lens should be stored in a lens. Every lens has some NVRAM anyway (so body can read its identifier). Nikon and Canon got the protocol wrong.

Just a Photographer
By Just a Photographer (9 months ago)

And how would you then like to update your lens without sending it to Canon or Nikon?

Nothing wrong with storing this information in the camera. I'd rather update the firmware of my camera then having to put the lens into a special 'bay' like Sigma recently announced.

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
By citizenlouie (9 months ago)

@Just a Photographer. Nikon can do it like what Olympus does. Hook the lens to the camera body and run the update program. Both my 4/3 and m4/3 cameras/lenses are updated the same way. I think the reason Nikon does it this way though is because there are many legacy lenses in their library, whereas 4/3 and m4/3 are made for digital format from ground up (and distortion data was already embedded in the lens when they released). So what Nikon did was the only feasible way.

ice de ocampo
By ice de ocampo (9 months ago)

...and if they comeup with better data, you'll have to do that for each lens.

....and you will need to get extra hardware to attach the lens to,

...and it will not be universal, there are already lenses (and cameras that are not expecting to read data from lenses) our there without the built in data

By imax2k2 (3 months ago)

^^ This exactly, how many times would replace, update for each of your lens?

By Fixx (9 months ago)

Does this work with RAW-photos or does the processing produce JPEG-files? That is, if I have distortion control enabled in my camera, do I get corrected NEF-files to my Lightroom library?

1 upvote
Richard Butler
By Richard Butler (9 months ago)

I believe Nikon's distortion correction is only applied to JPEGs.

By Sarge_ (9 months ago)

That's a bummer. I don't shoot jpeg on my D800... Does anyone?

By M35G35 (9 months ago)

Shoot both NEF and small JPEG on my D800E.

DC Akowua
By DC Akowua (9 months ago)

.....(RAW) distortion correction can be done in NX2 for Nikkor lenses

By chaos215bar2 (9 months ago)

If the camera corrected the NEF, it wouldn't be RAW anymore. The whole point is that it stores exactly what comes from the sensor (or almost exactly if you use lossy compression).

That said, it would be great if they encoded the distortion correction parameters in the NEF so the RAW processing program could apply it later (without needing it's own database).

By Garp2000 (9 months ago)

Micro 43 does this. The correction data is part of the RAW file.

By Smartypants (9 months ago)

So, the firmware change is designed to correct optics by adjusting it at the body. Isn’t that what Sigma offers with its USB interface at the lens and how different is that than making focusing adjustments on the body using firmware was many of us do now.
I don’t see how that messes up the concept of RAW.

Paul Guba
By Paul Guba (9 months ago)

Yeah kinda irrelevant for most as many shoot RAW. If I want my computer to lock up I launch Nikon software otherwise I am using LightRoom.

By TWIZEEL (9 months ago)

I don't shoot jpeg .... that is quite amateurish, I do most of my reportage, events in jpg, just setup right profile and go. Even some real estate job if it is urgent I use jpg.

By blaster182 (9 months ago)

If you select distortion correction while shooting RAW, it is applied to the JPEG preview that you can see on the camera screen.

This allows you to see the slight cropping of the frame caused by the correction. This is quite handy, I think.

In addition, the perspective correction is pre-selected when you open the RAW file in Nikon software like Capture NX2. There you can deselect if you do not want to apply it after all.

(Above is at least true for the D7000 model.)

Comment edited 40 seconds after posting
By tvpnyc (9 months ago)

not following how the camera (or lens) is effected— being that this is a proper app for OSX/windows and not for the firmware of the camera. assistance is welcome.

Frank Kuypers
By Frank Kuypers (8 months ago)

I am on MAC OSX, I installed the dmg & app and then what do I need to do? the install does not tell me what to do next after I installed it.... Help!!!

Total comments: 24