Nikon D40X Review
Conclusion - Pros
- Resolution and sharpness on par with the best of the current ten megapixel bunch
- A demonstrable resolution gain at lower sensitivities, less obvious at ISO 800 and 1600
- Surprisingly good build quality, tight shut lines
- Very compact and lightweight (especially with kit lens) yet still comfortable to use
- Kit lens is better quality than many others
- Great in-use performance, very responsive, short black-out time, very fast media write
- Good fast auto focus system (only 3 areas but that's not a big issue for this camera)
- Auto-focus assist lamp rather than requiring flash to be raised
- Reliable, sophisticated, if sometimes a little conservative matrix metering system
- For a Pentamirror the viewfinder delivers a surprisingly bright image
- Extremely useful, customizable automatic sensitivity (ISO)
- Easy to use playback / delete combination
- All playback functions available in record review
- Very attractive and intuitive menu system
- Unlimited 3 fps continuous shooting in JPEG mode (with a reasonably fast card)
- Good SD card throughput and USB 2.0 transfer speed
- In-camera retouching features including D-Lighting and Red-eye reduction
- Support for SD and SDHC cards
- Good large LCD monitor with wide viewing angles
- Dedicated help button provides both shooting and in-menu assistance
- Programmable Fn hard button
- Value for money
Conclusion - Cons
- No lens motor in body means non-AF-S/AF-I lenses are manual focus only
- Disappointingly RAW+JPEG setting only records Basic quality JPEG's
- No status LCD panel on top of camera (we hate to see these go)
- No exposure or white balance bracketing
- No hard buttons (without customizing) for ISO or White Balance
- No depth-of-field preview
- Occasional visibility of moire artifacts (although seldom)
- Fixed exposure steps (1/3 EV)
- Disappointing automatic white balance performance in incandescent light
- No RAW adjustment with supplied PictureProject, only simple conversion
- Limited image parameter adjustment (especially for color saturation)
No one was more surprised that me when Nikon passed through the press releases for the D40X. Just under four months since the arrival of the six megapixel D40 and Nikon were about to reveal a ten megapixel version of the same (save for a base ISO 100 sensitivity and 3.0 fps shooting speed) camera.
That it only took four months for the D40 to leap from six to ten megapixels begs the simple question: why Nikon didn't just release the D40X in the first instance? Was the ten megapixel sensor not ready in time? Did they have stock of the 'old' six megapixel sensor laying around? We will probably never know.
One thing however, is certain: the new model is positioned to go head-to-head against the most dominant digital SLR on the market, Canon's EOS 400D (Digital Rebel XTi). On paper it measures up well, missing out only with its lack of a physical dust reduction mechanism, no vertical hand grip option and limited image parameter adjustment. Additionally, as with the D40, die-hard Nikon owners may be disappointed with the lack of a focus motor in the body, meaning that many non-AF-S/AF-I lenses will not auto focus (including some Nikon's best prime lenses).
Other shortcomings which I also counted against the D40 include the fact that when I shot RAW+JPEG I was only getting Basic quality JPEG's. I also didn't like that there wasn't a dedicated ISO or WB button on the camera (yes, you can program the Fn button but I would have thought it more logical to use the four-way controller on the rear from day one), and as with most recent digital SLRs automatic white balance was something you should really only use in natural light. Other things which will be of less importance to D40 owners are the lack of bracketing, depth-of-field preview and fixed exposure steps.
Everything positive we said about the usage and performance of the D40 obviously remains true of the D40X; instant on times, instant response, good auto focus and a punchy feel to the shutter release which encourages you to take more pictures. With its compact body not compromising comfort or ergonomics in any way the D40X is perhaps one of the easiest 'carry around' digital SLRs; it that won't break your back or leave you with an aching neck.
Handling aside, everything else that I said about the D40 remains true with the D40X. Good image processing ekes about as much detail out of the image as heavier RAW conversion can, although the limits of the smaller photosites become clear at higher sensitivities, and good dynamic range means softer roll-offs in highlights - and more likelihood of getting a nice blue sky in a landscape shot.
So in conclusion, the D40X really is just as good as the D40, with the added benefit of a little bit more resolution and slightly faster continuous shooting. But is it enough to take the pole position as the ultimate compact ten megapixel DSLR? That's harder to say, image quality-wise it's a dead heat with the EOS 400D (except at high sensitivities); it's quicker and more comfortable to use, but very slightly less featured, especially if you consider lens compatibility. It would be hard to recommend one over the other and the answer would depend solely on your preferences (I'm calling it a draw).
Rating (out of 10)
|Ergonomics & handling||8.5|
|Al Fateh Grand Mosque by mallen1976|
from Your City - B&W Night Picture
|Fascia walkie talkie building London by ian herridge|
from Abstract Architecture
|Beakable by Hobbyfotograaf|
|St Paul's - DT NYC by mollymcd|
from Modern - Old-Fashioned
The company behind retail giant B&H Photo has agreed to pay out $3.2 million in monetary relief and back wages to settle a discrimination and harassment case from 2016.
After a popular Facebook teaser and some studio portrait samples, Godox has finally officially released the Godox A1 smartphone flash and flash trigger. Cheap, versatile and innovative, color us intrigued.
Canon’s EOS 5D Mk IV has won the European Imaging and Sound Association’s Professional DSLR of the Year award, making this the third year in a row that the brand has beaten Nikon to the top spot in the professional camera category.
A photograph and quote tweeted out by former president Barack Obama has officially become the most popular tweet of all time, receiving over 1.3 million retweets and 3.4 million likes.
Edward Weston was one of the most influential photographers of the 20th century, and in this episode of Advancing Your Photography we learn the extreme technique he used to capture one of his most famous still life photos.
Instagram just released a small update that will make a huge difference if you're active on the photo sharing app: threaded comment replies.
Venus Optics has announced the price and delivery date of the second lens to join its Zero-D line up: the 15mm F2 for Sony’s E mount. A lens they've dubbed, "the world's fastest 15mm rectilinear lens for full-frame."
Cinnac is a new social network for photographers that will help you separate your good photos from your great ones through a Tinder-like community-based rating system.
The Canon EF 35mm F2 IS USM is an understated jewel of a lens, and one that we've enjoyed on a variety of cameras since its release almost five years ago. Its relatively small size and image stabilization make it a versatile tool for a variety of photography - check out our sample gallery.
You don't need a fancy studio or tons of gear to capture the kind of classic product photography you see in magazines. In this video, Dustin Dolby shows you how to do it with just a couple of speedlights and some know-how.
The life-logging camera is trying to make a comeback. Say hello to FrontRow, a live-streaming enabled life-logging camera from Ubiquiti that hangs on a necklace like a pendant.
When a prospective client approaches you, don't just say "yes" right away. Here's a useful list of questions you should be asking before you decide to take the job and name your price.
Samsung just revealed a blazing-fast new Solid State Drive capable of data transfer speeds of up to 540MB/s.
DJI has developed a 'Local Data Mode' that lets pilots fly without being connected to the Internet. The mode should calm recent fears over data privacy and security when flying DJI drones.
After 1.7 million downloads on Apple computers since the launch in November 2015, Aurora HDR will be available for Windows PCs for the first time with the 2018 release.
The company behind the new Meyer Optik Goerlitz lens manufacturing business has formed a new brand to bring back the Biotar 75mm F1.5 that was made by Carl Zeiss Jena in the 1940s and 50s.
The updated Qualcomm Spectra system is a dual-camera setup that is capable of sensing depth and motion in real time.
A sizable swath of the United States will be treated to a total eclipse of the heart – er, sun – in just under a week. Here are a few excellent guides to help you photograph this rare occasion.
f11 Magazine—an ad-supported, free magazine for 'photographers and aficionados' that focused on photos rather than gear—is suspending publication due to financial troubles.
The Minolta MC Rokkor-X 40-80mm F2.8 is unlike any zoom lens you've probably ever seen. Instead of a helicoid, it uses a gearbox, and because of this it's still one of the sharpest zoom lenses out there.
If you're looking to switch to Sony, the company's new limited-time "α trade up" promotion can snag you up to $500 + trade-in value towards a brand new a9, a7 II, a7R II, or a7S II when you hand over your DSLR or mirrorless camera.
The Google Camera app exclusive to the company's own Pixel phone has been unofficially ported to other Android devices. If you're willing to take the risk of installing, you can now use features like HDR+ on the Galaxy S8, LG G6, OnePlus 5, and more.
49-year-old David Hilos is known by the Singapore photography community as the 'camera whisperer.' When a service center says a camera is beyond repair, Hilos can usually coax it back to life.
Photographer Ryan Kelly captured one of the most viral and graphic images of the horrifying events in Charlottesville, VA this weekend. This is the harrowing story behind that photograph.
Data storage manufacturer Synology has added a new, lower-cost NAS to its DiskStation j line that has a maximum capacity of 40TB, and which is aimed at home users and photography enthusiasts.
We hate to be the bearer of bad news, but here it is: the $500 interchangeable lens camera is about to go the way of the $200 compact.
On April 16, 2016 disaster struck in Kumamoto in the form of an unprecedented 7.0 magnitude earthquake. Here is the public's first look at Sony's sensor factory during the quake, the resulting damage and the efforts to restore operations.
Last August, travel photographer and Resource Travel editor Michael Bonocore escaped to the island of Tahiti for a month of cool adventures and amazing photography.
Curious just how tough Nikon's KeyMission 360 action camera really is? This one got chewed on by a tiger for several minutes and recorded the whole thing.
The EOS 6D Mark II is essentially a full frame version of the EOS 80D. However, we weren't exactly bowled-over by it, when we reviewed it. Does that mean it's not worth the cost of upgrading? Let us walk you through the differences.