Nikon D200 Review
Top of camera controls (right)
On the top of the camera on the right side you will find the power switch, shutter release button, exposure mode and exposure compensation buttons. At the front and rear edges of this side of the camera, in line with the shutter release button are the two command dials (with a soft rubber coating). On the rear of the camera surrounding the AE-L/AF-L button is the metering mode selector, to the right of this the AF-ON button. Note that CSM f5 allows you to swap the function of the front and rear command dials. The function of controls described below are for a camera with default settings.
Buttons combined with a dial turn are held while the dial is turned, however you can choose to simply have to press the button once and release, this is achieved via CSM f6.
Powers the camera off immediately, if there are images still buffered to be written the camera will remain on until the write has completed. When off the camera continues to display the remaining frames / frame count and CF status on the top LCD panel.
Switches the camera on, this is as fast as we can time it, as good as instant. There is simply no perceptible delay between turning the the dial and the first shot (you can even hold the shutter release and turn the power dial to test this).
Flick the power switch to this position to illuminate the control panels backlight's (top and rear). The backlight stays on for the 'auto meter-off' time (CSM c3).
Buttons (combined with dial turn)
|MODE||Exposure mode (detail below)
Programmed Auto (flexible)
+/- 5 EV
0.3, 0.5 or 1 EV steps (CSM b4)
Buttons (single press)
The AF-ON button (repeated on the vertical hand grip) is an alternative to half-pressing the shutter release, it triggers the camera's auto focus system. You can if you wish have the camera set to that AF is not triggered by a shutter release half-press (CSM a5) and only by the AF-ON button (some photographers prefer this).
|AE / AF Lock
Pressing this button locks the current exposure and focus, in its default mode both AE and AF remain locked as long as you hold the button. CSM c2 allows you to change the function of this button to lock just AE or just AF and whether or not you need to hold the button or can just press it once.
|3D Color matrix metering II / Color Matrix II / Color Matrix
3D Color matrix metering uses a 1005 pixel CCD to calculate the best exposure for the frame. 3D color matrix metering is only available with G type or D type lenses where the range information is used in conjunction with metered light. Color matrix II metering is used with other CPU lenses. Color matrix metering is used when focal length and aperture are entered manually using the 'Non-CPU lens data' menu item.
The camera uses the entire frame for light measurement but assigns a greater weight to an area in the center of the frame (by default an 8 mm circle indicated on the viewfinder focus screen). The size of the circle used to define the "center" of the frame can be set by CSM b6.
The camera measures light only in a circle 3 mm in diameter. This is tied to the currently selected AF area point unless dynamic AF or a non-CPU lens is used when it defaults to the center of the frame.
|P||Programmed Auto (flexible)
In this mode the camera automatically selects aperture and shutter speed based on the current metered exposure value, exposure compensation and selected ISO sensitivity. The D200's flexible program allows you to select one of a range of identical exposures (using different combinations of aperture and shutter speed) by turning the main command dial. Example:
1/125 sec, F9 (turn left one click)
1/160 sec, F8.0 (turn left one click)
1/200 sec, F7.1 (metered)
1/250 sec, F6.3 (turn right one click)
1/320 sec, F5.6 (turn right one click)
In this mode you select the shutter speed and the camera will calculate the correct aperture depending on metered exposure, exposure compensation and ISO sensitivity. Turn the main command dial to select shutter speed (in 0.3, 0.5 or 1.0 EV exposure steps depending on CSM b3).
1/8000, 1/6400, 1/5000, 1/4000, 1/3200, 1/2500, 1/2000, 1/1600, 1/1250, 1/1000, 1/800, 1/640, 1/500, 1/400, 1/320, 1/250, 1/200, 1/160, 1/125, 1/100, 1/80, 1/60, 1/50, 1/40, 1/30, 1/25, 1/20, 1/15, 1/13, 1/10, 1/8, 1/6, 1/5, 1/4, 1/3, 1/2.5, 1/2, 1/1.6, 1/1.3, 1, 1.3, 1.6, 2, 2.5, 3.2, 4, 5, 6, 8, 10, 13, 15, 20, 25, 30 sec, x250
In this mode you select the aperture and the camera will calculate the correct shutter speed depending on metered exposure, exposure compensation and ISO sensitivity. Turn the sub command dial to select aperture (in 0.3, 0.5 or 1.0 EV exposure steps depending on CSM b3). The exact range of apertures will depend on the lens used.
Top of camera controls (left)
The top left side of the camera has the mode dial which allows you to select the camera's drive mode, single, two continuous speeds, self-timer or mirror up. This dial is locked from accidental change and can only be turned by holding the lock release pin to the top left of the dial. On the top of this dial are three buttons for quality, white balance and ISO sensitivity. At the back we have the bracketing mode selector button and erase button (described on the next page).
|S||Single frame shooting
One frame is taken with one depression of the shutter release button. You can of course still 'pump' shots as quickly as you can re-press the shutter release. The D200's shutter release button is the soft-press type which easily facilitates quick re-press.
Continuous low speed shooting
Continuous high speed shooting
Camera takes a shot after a predefined delay. This can be set to 2, 5, 10, or 20 seconds via CSM c4.
Buttons (combined with a command dial)
The D200 provides four different types of bracketing; exposure and flash bracketing, just exposure bracketing, just flash bracketing and white balance bracketing. Bracketing type can be selected through CSM e5, other bracketing settings are controlled by CSM e6, CSM e7 and CSM e8.
RAW + Fine JPEG
RAW + Normal JPEG
RAW + Basic JPEG
Image size (all except RAW quality)
|WB||White balance mode
Color temperature (Kelvin)
White balance preset
|White balance adjustment
- Fine tune -3 to +3
- Fine tune -3 to +3
- Fine tune -3 to +3
- Fine tune -3 to +3
- Fine tune -3 to +3
- Fine tune -3 to +3
- Fine tune -3 to +3
- Temperature 2500 K to 10000 K
- Preset 0 to 4
HI-0.3 (2000 equiv.)
HI-0.7 (2500 equiv.)
HI-1.0 (3200 equiv.)
(You can choose 0.3, 0.5 or 1.0 EV steps for ISO selection via CSM b2)
|BKT||Auto Bracketing number shots
+3F (+2x, +x, 0)
-3F (-2x, -x, 0)
+2F (+x, 0)
-2F (-x, 0)
3F (3 frames +x to -x)
5F (5 frames +2x to +2x)
7F (7 frames +3x to +3x)
9F (9 frames +4x to +4x)
(Where x = bracketing increment)
|Auto Bracketing EV increment
|Auto Bracketing WB increment
|Fairy garden by Jill Hancock|
|Avro Vulcan Heavy Bomber by cjf2|
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