Nikon D300 In-depth Review
Just under two years since the D200 Nikon reveals the D300, the range of changes is so significant that it wouldn't be inappropriate to call it a 'compact D3' (less the full-frame sensor of course). From the top there's a new CMOS sensor with twelve megapixels, a new auto-focus sensor with 51-points (15 of which are cross-type sensitive), there's focus tracking by color, scene recognition, Picture Control presets, six frames per second continuous shooting (or eight frames per second with a battery pack), Compact Flash UDMA support, Live View (with contrast detect AF) and the mighty impressive 3.0" 922,000 pixel LCD monitor (oh and HDMI video output). It's an impressive list, the D200 was a fair step up from the D100, the D300 can be seen as just as big a step, certainly more than enough to make the competition sweat.
Model line history
|Continuous highest (JPEG)||LCD monitor|
|D100||Feb 2002||6.0 mp||5 point||3.0 fps, 6 frames||1.8", 120K pixels|
|D200||Nov 2005||10.2 mp||11 point||5.0 fps, 37 frames||2.5" 230K pixels|
|D300||Aug 2007||12.3 mp||51 point||6.0/8.0 fps, 100 frames||3.0" 922K pixels + Live View|
Nikon D300 Key Features
- 12.3 megapixel DX format CMOS sensor
- Self-cleaning sensor unit (low-pass filter vibration)
- ISO 200 - 3200 (6400 with boost)
- 14-bit A/D conversion
- Nikon EXPEED image processor (Capture NX processing and NR algorithms, lower power)
- Super fast operation (power-up 13 ms, shutter lag 45 ms, black-out 100 ms)
- Shutter life 150,000 exposures
- New Multi-CAM3500DX Auto Focus sensor (51-point, 15 cross-type, more vertical coverage)
- Auto-focus tracking by color (using information from 1005-pixel AE sensor)
- Auto-focus calibration (fine-tuning) now available (fixed body or up to 20 separate lens settings)
- Scene Recognition System (uses AE sensor, AF sensor)
- Picture Control image parameter presets (replace Color Modes I, II and III)
- Custom image parameters now support brightness as well as contrast
- Six frames per second continuous shooting (eight frames per second with battery pack)
- Compact Flash UDMA support
- 3.0" 922,000 pixel LCD monitor
- Live View with either phase detect (mirror up/down) or contrast detect Auto Focus
- HDMI HD video output
- 'Active D-Lighting' (adjusts metering as well as applying D-Lighting curve)
- Detailed 'Control Panel' type display on LCD monitor, changes color in darkness
- New MB-D10 vertical grip fully integrates into body, multi battery type compatible
- Buttons sealed against moisture
|12.3 megapixel DX format CMOS sensor||Viewfinder pentaprism|
|Main board with EXPEED processor||EXPEED processor|
|51-point Multi-CAM 3500DX AF sensor module||51 AF point locations in frame (approx.)|
|1005-pixel metering sensor||Shutter|
Nikon D300 vs. D200 feature and specification differences
|Sensor|| • 12.3 million effective pixel CMOS
• DX format
| • 10.2 million effective pixel CCD
• DX format
|Image processor||Nikon EXPEED||Unspecified|
|Image sizes||• 4288 x 2848
• 3216 x 2136
• 2144 x 1424
|• 3872 x 2592
• 2896 x 1944
• 1936 x 1296
|RAW files||NEF / Compressed NEF 14-bit||NEF 12-bit|
|Dust reduction||Self-cleaning sensor unit||No|
|Auto focus||• 51-point Multi-CAM 3500DX
• 15 cross-type sensors
• Contrast detect in Live View mode
|• 11-point Multi-CAM 1000|
|Focus tracking by color||Yes||No|
|AF area mode||
• Single point AF
|• Single Area AF
• Dynamic AF with Focus Tracking and Lock-on
• Group Dynamic AF
• Closest Subject Priority Dynamic AF
• Default: ISO 200 - 3200
• Default: ISO 100 - 1600
|Continuous shooting||• With built-in battery: up to 6 fps
• With AC adapter or MB-D10 pack and batteries other than EN-EL3e: up to 8 fps
| 5 fps
|Image Parameters||• Picture Control (4 presets)
|• Presets (6 presets)
• Color mode
|Active D-Lighting||Yes (also adjusts exposure)||No|
|Viewfinder||100% frame coverage||95% frame coverage|
|LCD monitor||• 3.0 " TFT LCD
• 922,000 pixels
|• 2.5 " TFT LCD
• 230,000 pixels
|LCD Live View||• Handheld mode (phase detect AF)
• Tripod mode (contrast detect AF)
|Compact Flash||Type I / II (UDMA support)||Type I / II|
|Video output||HDMI (HD)||Composite (SD)|
|Dimensions||147 x 114 x 74 mm (5.8 x 4.5 x 2.9 in)||147 x 113 x 74 mm (5.8 x 4.4 x 2.9 in)|
|Weight (no batt)||825 g (1.82 lb)||830 g (1.8 lb)|
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