Previous page Next page

Timings & File Sizes

Despite the increase in image size the D40X achieves the same punchy 'always ready' feeling as the D40. In use the only noticeable difference between the two is the just slightly slower record review (around a third of a second) and the faster continuous shooting (3.0 fps versus the D40's 2.6 fps). Switch the D40X on and it's ready instantly, utilizing Nikon's "sleep state" design means that you'll never have to wait for the camera, it'll always be faster than you. In day to day use the D40X feels very much like a mechanical film camera, you know that when you hit the shutter release it's going to take that shot. Kudos.

Timing Notes: All times calculated as an average of three operations. Unless otherwise stated all timings were made on a 3872 x 2592 JPEG Fine (approx. 3,400 KB per image).

The media used for these tests were:

  • 2 GB SanDisk Extreme III SD card
  • 2 GB Lexar Pro 133x SD card
Action
Details
Time, secs
(2 GB SanDisk)
Time, secs
(2 GB Lexar)
Power Off to On *1   0.9 0.9
Power Off to Shot *2   <0.1 <0.1
Sleep to On   <0.1 <0.1
Power On to Off   <0.1 <0.1
Record Review *3
RAW
1.4 1.4
Record Review *3
JPEG
1.3 1.3
Play *4
RAW
~0.1 ~0.1
Play *4
JPEG
~0.1 ~0.1
Play Image to Image
RAW
~0.1 ~0.1
Play Image to Image
JPEG
~0.1 ~0.1

*1 This is the amount of time before the status screen is shown on the LCD monitor, as shown by the next measurement this doesn't have any impact on how soon you can take a shot.
*2 As good as instant, just like the D80 and D40 the D40X the appears to remain in a 'sleep state' even when powered off.
*3 Time taken from the shutter release being pressed to the review image being displayed on the LCD monitor.
*4 The D40X will cache an image once it has been displayed although it reads images so quickly from the card that the difference between an actual read and a cached read is hardly noticeable.

Continuous Drive mode

To test continuous mode the camera had the following settings: Manual Focus, Manual Exposure (1/320 sec, F5.6), ISO 200. Measurements were taken from audio recordings of the tests. Media used were the same as above.

The tests carried out below measured the following results for JPEG and RAW:

  • Frame rate - Initial frame rate, this was always 3.0 fps (+/- 0.01 fps)
  • Number of frames - Number of frames in a burst
  • Buffer full rate - Frame rate if shutter release held after burst (buffer full)
  • Next burst - How soon after the burst it is fully written to the card (indicator goes out)

Burst of JPEG Large Fine images

Timing
2 GB SanDisk
Extreme III SD
2 GB Lexar
Pro 133x SD
Frame rate (average) 3.0 fps 3.0 fps
Number of frames - -
Buffer full rate - -
Next burst - -

Burst of RAW images

Timing
2 GB SanDisk
Extreme III SD
2 GB Lexar
Pro 133x SD
Frame rate (average) 3.0 fps 3.0 fps
Number of frames 7 6
Buffer full rate 1.2 fps 1.2 fps
Next burst 6.0 sec 6.5 sec

"It does what it says on the box", and thankfully, too many camera manufacturer marketing departments are ready to over-inflate specs, Nikon however can be commended for delivering exactly the shooting rate quoted in their specs. The D40X achieved a consistent three frames per second, in JPEG mode it will shoot until the card is full (with a fast card), in RAW mode you're looking at between six and seven frames before slowing to 1.2 fps (no big concern as few people will shoot RAW continuously).

File Flush Timing

Timings shown below are the time taken for the camera to process and "flush" the image out to the storage card. Timing was taken from the instant the shutter release was pressed to the time the storage card activity lamp beside the compartment door went out. Media used were the same as above.

Image type
Time, secs
(2 GB SanDisk)
Time, secs
(2 GB Lexar)
Approx.
size
3872 x 2592 RAW + JPEG Basic 3.1 3.1 12,000 KB *1
3872 x 2592 RAW 2.5 2.5 8,600 KB
3872 x 2592 JPEG Fine 2.0 2.0 3,400 KB
3872 x 2592 JPEG Normal 1.9 1.9 2,400 KB

*1 File size reported here is the size of the RAW and Basic quality JPEG files added together.
*2 The D40X begins writing around 0.6 seconds after the shutter release is pressed so you must subtract 'processing time' from the timing to get the actual write time.

As per the D40 the D40X has very fast write times, around 5 MB/sec for RAW images with fast cards as used in this test. Note though that the overall write times are longer than the D40 because of the extra data which has to be processed and larger files sizes. Just like the D80 and D40 the D40X has a very good buffer implementation which means that all image processing and card write processes occur in parallel with normal camera operation ('in the background'), hence never affecting your ability to take the next shot.

USB transfer speed

To test the D40X's USB transfer speed we transferred approximately 128 MB of images (mixed RAW and JPEG) from a SanDisk Extreme III 2 GB SD card.

Method
Transfer rate
Sony built-in SD card reader (Vaio TX) 6.7 MB/sec
Nikon D40X (Mass storage device) 6.7 MB/sec
Panasonic CardBus PCMCIA adapter 10.7 MB/sec
SanDisk Extreme IV USB 2.0 card reader 10.9 MB/sec

As expected the D40X delivered virtually identical transfer rates as the D40, slightly slower than the D80 but still respectable enough for direct connection. We didn't test PTP mode on the D40X but on the D40 found it to be about 1 MB/sec faster, we'd expect the same here.

Previous page Next page
56
I own it
3
I want it
62
I had it
Discuss in the forums

Comments