The Nikon DF is almost totally revealed in Nikon’s Pure Photography Video #4. The above composite shot was created by combining details frame by frame from the end of the video. It shows the front of the Nikon DF camera with raised pyramidal viewfinder and front knobs and buttons. Also visible for the first time is the FX logo, confirming that the new retro-style camera will feature a full frame sensor.
The side view of the special Nikon 50mm 1.8G for the Nikon DF shows the raised rubber grip with two rows of grooves that is similar to earlier Nikon lens designs. The current 1.8G lens has one row of long raised grooves. The silver aperture ring is also visible at the right edge of the frame.
This front shot of the Nikon 50mm 1.8G shows the grooves on the machined metal aperture ring. The front of the lens is partially obscured in shadow, but with further enhancement more of the lens elements can be seen.
In this enhanced photo, the recessed front element, filter thread and focusing ring are clearly visible. The raised sections around the outer edge of the rim show where the lens hood will attach. Internally this lens could be identical to the existing 50mm 1.8G, merely with a mechanical or electro-mechanical aperture selection ring and new aesthetics to match the Nikon DF.
The back corner of the camera is visible in this over-the-back shot. The details in the camera are not very visible, however upon magnification and enchancement some details can be seen.
The close-up appears to show the section of the back of the camera that would normally contain an LCD. In these shots it is not clear if there is an LCD screen there or not. The video resolution does not contain enough detail to confirm, however there is no evidence of a rear screen and the camera body appears to be continuous from the side of the camera to several inches along the back side, a place where an LCD normally resides.
As the video ends, the narration concludes, “the camera leads me somewhere new.” Indeed, the Nikon DF marks a new direction for digital photography.
The Nikon DF Pure Photography Video ends with confirmation of the announcement date: November 5, 2013. Stay tuned for a close-up look and analysis of additional details from the fifth video of the series which should be released in the next two days.
The Nikon DF announcement will be in one week from today on November 5, 2013. The DF represents a return to photographic roots by offering the photographer with full manual control and support for all Nikon F-mount lenses produced over the past five decades.
The DF will work with modern AF-S and G lenses, older AF, and still over AI, AI-S lenses. The camera may also incorporate a movable AI-coupling to allow compatibility with Non-AI lenses since the F-mount was introduced in 1959. This would make the DF the most compatible camera ever produced in Nikon’s history.
The DF will incorporate cutting-edge technology in its 16 megapixel digital sensor, building on Nikon’s flagship D4 technology. The 35mm full-frame (FX) sensor is optimized for the best combination of image quality, color depth, dynamic range and low-light capabilities.
The body of the DF places all the necessary controls easily at hand and provides unmatched mechanical feel and tactile feedback. The result is both aesthetically pleasing and instantly timeless, reminiscent of early Nikon FE bodies.
A special version of 50mm 1.8G lens is standard with the DF. By adding a manual aperture ring and styling to match the new body, the combination is a meld of modern technology and classic performance.
The third in a series of videos shows the Nikon DF kit lens and a good view of the front of the camera. This lens is a 50mm 1.8G lens based on the existing AF-S lens, but it has an aperture ring. As the man is cleaning an AF Nikkor lens, a bird or birds are heard rustling as if to take flight and the character installs the 50mm lens on the Nikon DF body.
Camera strap lugs are on the front of the camera. This allows a half-case to be installed on the camera. It will also help balance the camera when hanging on the chest with a lens attached.
And what is the silver ring on the lens? An aperture ring on a G lens? Nikon is going back to manual controls on the Nikon DF and they are making this version of the 50mm 1.8G with a aperture ring. This lens has a built-in focus motor (AF-S) as indicated by the auto/manual focus mode switch.
The lens other shown in this video is the AF Nikkor 28mm f/2.8D autofocus lens. This implies the Nikon DF will have an in-body auto focus motor to be fully compatible with existing AF lenses. We expect it will meter with AI and AI-S lenses too.
“No clutter, no distractions. This is my world.”
Nikon has released video #2 of the Pure Photography series. The second in the set of five videos created to stir excitement in advance of the new Nikon DF announcement. This is an unusual and bold move from Nikon.
As the man moves through the woods we see the side of the camera in what appears to be a leather half-case for the Nikon DF. The strap emerges from the front and an angle can be seen on the side just below the strap.
As he stands we see the full profile of the side of the Nikon DF once again showing what looks like a case or hand grip.
The Nikon DF is just visible at the bottom of the frame. the angled top of the camera is clearly visible. In addition we can see the hot shoe. Stitching details on the strap are also well defined.
The final frame shows highlights on the front of the camera. Most likely these buttons are depth of field preview, function button on the left, lens mount release on the right and in the upper right a control dial for focus mode.
The video ends with the statement, “one great shot rewards everything.”
Nikon has created a series of five videos to build momentum and excitement for the launch of an upcoming full-frame digital camera. The Nikon DF is expected to be announced November 6, 2013. The DF is a long-awaited digital camera with retro-styling and full-manual control of 35mm film cameras of decades past.
The videos are a series of short films about a photographer in the remote wildnerness in Scotland with only a camera. By exploring the landscape he is able connect with his creative side by taking pictures. Nikon calls it a “journey of self-discovery.” However, it is also about unveiling a new idea about how a camera can operate in harmony with its operator through the creative process.
The first video of the series appears below. It was published by Nikon Asia on YouTube with the simple description, “A photographer stands alone in a bleak landscape. Something has been missing in his creative life. Will he find it here?”
In this video we hear mechanical clicks, which could be manual aperture adjustments. It is possible there could be a manual aperture control on the front of the camera, or simply the aperture ring on the lens.
The video ends with the wonderful sound of a mechanical shutter and the phrase, “It’s in my hands again.” The phrase “Pure Photography” appears on the screen. The “it” in the phrase is ambiguous, it could mean the style of camera from the past is back, or it could mean the art of photography is now easier with all-manual controls.
Rumors of the features of this camera have appeared over the Internet over the past two weeks. Many of the features are clear:
- 16.2MP digital sensor
- All-metal construction
- EXPEED 3 image processing system
- SLR design with pentaprism viewfinder
- Accepts all Nikon F-mount lenses including AF, AI, AI-S with full metering
- 2016-pixel RGB sensor with 3D color Matrix Metering II
- 765g weight of camera body with battery and media card
- Secure Digital SD/SDHC/SDXC media format
- Fixed 3.2-inch LCD screen
- 5.5 frames per second continuous shooting
- 100-12,800 ISO range with expanded range 50 to 108,200 ISO
- A new 50mm 1.8G lens styled to match the camera will be sold as kit.
The name DF means Digital Fusion. A fusion of new and old design and technology. It could also describe a hybrid viewfinder, a special hybrid electronic/mechanical shutter design, or a special feature of the image sensor.
What is the Nikon DF? A new concept in digital photography. Nikon has taken its much-loved full-frame film camera design and added a modern digital sensor. The Nikon DF blende all of the manual control and solid build of the past with the latest digital technology.