Nikon D4 review

April 14, 2012

Overall Rating:


Nikon D4

  • Autofocus:
  • Noise/resolution:
  • Metering:
  • Features:
  • AWB Colour:
  • LCD viewfinder:
  • Dynamic Range:
  • Build/Handling:



Price as Reviewed:


The 16.2-million-pixel D4 professional DSLR is Nikon’s attempt to improve upon its own D3S, one of the best cameras we have ever reviewed


For press photographers, it is vital to be able to send the latest images back to a picture desk almost as soon as the events have taken place. This usually means uploading the files to a newspaper or agency’s image server via a laptop computer. However, the Nikon D4 has an ethernet socket, and the software to connect to an FTP server, built in. This allows the photographer to simply plug in a network cable and upload all their images to a server straight from the camera.

There is also a new Nikon WT-5 Wi-Fi adapter. This is far smaller than previous Wi-Fi adapters, partly because it is powered by the camera’s battery. The adapter allows the D4 to be connected to a Wi-Fi network, again making it easy to send images to another computer anywhere in the world. It also allows wireless camera control.

Provided the camera has a Wi-Fi connection, a photographer can use any internet-connected computer, or a device such as a smart phone or Apple iPad, to log into the camera and see the live view display, as well as browse the images and take full control over the camera’s exposure and shooting settings, including autofocus.

The interface for controlling the camera can be accessed via a web browser using built-in software. This means additional software is not required, either for a smart phone or a computer.

It is also possible to create an ad-hoc wireless connection directly between a computer, smart phone, iPad (or similar) and the camera. This is extremely useful, as it doesn’t require a separate Wi-Fi connection. In particular, it is a boon for wildlife photographers, as being able to see the live feed from the camera and control its settings from the safe vantage point of a hide means that the animal is much less likely to be frightened away.

  • Built-in Flash: No
  • White Balance: 2 auto, 6 presets (with fine-tuning), plus 3 custom and Kelvin adjustment settings
  • Dioptre Adjustment: -3 to +1 dioptre
  • Shutter Type: Electronically controlled focal-plane
  • Memory Card: 1x CompactFlash slot compatible with UDMA 7, 1x XQD slot
  • Output Size: 4928x3280 pixels
  • Viewfinder Type: Pentaprism single-lens reflex viewfinder
  • White Balance Bracket: 2-9 exposures in increments of 1, 2 or 3
  • AF Points: 51 points, selectable manually or automatically
  • Field of View: Approx 100%
  • LCD: 3.2in TFT with 921,000 dots
  • Max Flash Sync: 1/250sec
  • Sensor: FX-format (full-frame) CMOS device with 16.2 million effective pixels
  • Exposure Modes: PASM
  • Focal Length Mag: 1x (1.5x in DX-format crop mode)
  • Weight: 1,180g (without battery or card/s)
  • File Format: NEF (raw), JPEG, raw+JPEG simultaneously
  • Power: Rechargeable Li-Ion battery (supplied)
  • Shutter Speeds: 30-1/8000sec in 1⁄3 steps, plus B
  • Colour Space: Adobe RGB, sRGB
  • Drive Mode: Single, continuous (Hi/Lo selectable, up to 10fps with AF; 11fps without AF and fixed exposure), self-timer
  • Lens Mount: Nikon F
  • Focusing Modes: Manual, single-shot AF, continuous AF with AF fine-tuning
  • ISO: 100-12,800 in 1/3EV steps and Hi1, 2, 3 (ISO 102,400)
  • Connectivity / Interface: USB 2.0 Hi-Speed, HDMI
  • Metering System: 91,000-pixel RGB 3D matrix metering, centreweighted (adjustable), spot (1.5%)
  • Dimensions: 160x156.5x90.5mm
  • DoF Preview: Yes
  • Exposure Comp: ±5EV in 1⁄3, 1/2 or 1EV steps
  • Compression: 3-stage JPEG, 3-stage NEF
  • RRP: £5,289.99 (body only)

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