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Updated Nikon D4S looks set to disappoint pros for hybrid video


Andrew Reid
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It's a f**king joke, a few lines of code, and a small heatsink would have made this a professional cinema camera (image quality wise), certainly the best for the buck.

 

 

 

HDMI remains only 8bit 4:2:2 like the consumer targeted D800. Despite the unadventurous specs list, the new sensor can scale for very high quality 4K “mini-raw†stills at 8MP resolution with the 16MP sensor count perfectly aligned for doing a clean pixel mixture in the scaling process, maintaining image quality. Yet there’s no 4K video on the D4S.

 

If they don't come up with a D4c it just doesn't make any sense to me.

 

A D4 4K Prores and compressed raw + D400 with the same specs but in APS-C would have made great sports,wildlife and cinema lineup for the next years to come, only surpassed by double exposure sensors.

 

I mean, everybody has nikkor glass, and only nikkor glass fits on them. They could build a nice market to make up for the losses.

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From the article:

 

The D4S has to compete with the Canon 1D X, a camera which has seemingly out performed the D4 on the market so far, which could help explain why Nikon have been unusually swift in updating the line.

 

Nothing unusual about this. The D4S was expected. Nikon has done this 'S' refresh after a few years since a long time. D2H < D2HS, D2X > D2XS, D3 > D3S... all pretty small updates. The D4 has been on the market for +2 years, so the S version was due...

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It's a f**king joke, a few lines of code, and a small heatsink would have made this a professional cinema camera (image quality wise), certainly the best for the buck.

 

 

If they don't come up with a D4c it just doesn't make any sense to me.

 

A D4 4K Prores and compressed raw + D400 with the same specs but in APS-C would have made great sports,wildlife and cinema lineup for the next years to come, only surpassed by double exposure sensors.

 

I mean, everybody has nikkor glass, and only nikkor glass fits on them. They could build a nice market to make up for the losses.

 

 

I've said it once, and i'm sure i'll say it again: licensing agreements. Nikon uses Sony sensors, that means Sony gets to tell them what they can and cannot do with them. 

 

It's the only sensible explanation.

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It's not, the sensor in the D4/D4S isn't from Sony.

Just stop expecting every new dslr is going to be the next holy grail for video. This camera competes only with the Canon 1D X. And for video between the two, it does pretty ok I think.

Yes, I'd love Nikon to make a great video camera, especially since they have no Cinema division to 'protect', but it won't just happen out of the blue. At least not right now.

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I don't know how long it is going to take before the big camera manufacturers finally get the message that people expect the video quality to be commensurate with the stills quality.  I don't think their management has any experience with video, and there are probably very few people on their staff that know anything about video.  These big ships take a long time to turn.  Hopefully, for them, they don't sink first.

 

Nikon will be at NAB, so we can give them an earful there.

 

Michael

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I've said it once, and i'm sure i'll say it again: licensing agreements. Nikon uses Sony sensors (at least they did in the D4), that means Sony gets to tell them what they can and cannot do with them. 

 

It's the only sensible explanation.

That explanation has been around since d90 times, it might be true. It doesn't matter if the chip is sony or not, the rest are.

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Did anyone really expect Nikon to step up and meet the expectations of video users? Name one DSLR they have released that has done this?

 

Nikon is playing to the stills shooters and stills shooter think that if a stills cameras video function is too good then it mustn't be a good stills camera. A lot of photographers are stupid and Nikon goes along with it.

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I've said it once, and i'm sure i'll say it again: licensing agreements. Nikon uses Sony sensors (at least they did in the D4), that means Sony gets to tell them what they can and cannot do with them. 

 

It's the only sensible explanation.

I don't think it works like this in business.

 

Take Samsung, they have been making many parts for Apple iPhones yet they don't dictate anything to Apple. Samsung doesn't cripple the iPhone. I think its nonsense that Sony would dictate to Nikon what they can do with their sensors. Nikon is just not interested in video.

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I don't think it works like this in business.

 

Take Samsung, they have been making many parts for Apple iPhones yet they don't dictate anything to Apple. Samsung doesn't cripple the iPhone. I think its nonsense that Sony would dictate to Nikon what they can do with their sensors. Nikon is just not interested in video.

 

You can't generalize. It depends on the bargaining power.  In this case Nikon doesn't really have a video market (to protect), and Sony does. 

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the reality is that their D4s customers dont care about the lacking features you asking here, at all

as Thom Hogan said there is only 120,000 D4 out there, and most of them sport shooters who are not allowed to make video in events however. what I guess is that they concluded investing in video department, wont dramatically increase their operating income, so why bother? 

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Guest Ebrahim Saadawi

The D4 line is designed for a very specific market, it's a special purpose camera. It's made for sports and journalism where money is not a problem and speed is money. Thus they sacrifice image quality to favour speed (compared to d800 for example),

That's why I think this camera would be a very bad choice for filmmakers, as they'd be paying a hefty premium price tag for the photojournalism/sports features.
Likewise, it would be a very bad decision by Nikon's markering team to invest in its video aspect, it wouldn't be very profitable.

That's why I wouldn't personally purchase a 1Dc too, I don't want a sports camera. I would be paying a 6000+ premium for the 1Dx's features when I don't need them. Make us a 4K shooting camera without asking us to purchase a 1Dx stuck to it.

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If I was gonna guess like the rest of you:

Nikon has a dedicated video-team that works with improving video-features as much as possible without affecting ANY still-camera functionality and almost no manufacturing price. Thus we can see every new iteration from Nikon improving in some video functionality and quality, but it will probably continue to be smaller improvements like this.

 

Sooner or later Nikon will have to invest in their video-department because more of their customers will get both photo and video-work and someone will offer an true hybrid pro-solution (M43 is not good enough).

 

Atleast I much prefer it to how canon does it, and it means that even the cheapest cameras will get all the upgrades (that does not cost money). Nikon must have a few brilliant video-engineers because the quality coming from their latest cameras are really good.

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Sooner or later Nikon will have to invest in their video-department because more of their customers will get both photo and video-work and someone will offer an true hybrid pro-solution (M43 is not good enough).

 

 

M43 not good enough?

 

If you cant get stunning images out of the upcoming GH4 then it is YOU that is not good enough. I have seen fantastic documentaries and films shot on 2/3" cameras. Shallow DOF can (and is) used a lot predominantly to mask lazy camera work.

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Updated Nikon D4S looks set to disappoint pros for hybrid video

 

Why is that, Andrew? Why is the D4s a disappointment to you? After all, it's Nikon we're talking about. Surely the D4s is exactly what was to be expected from them. 

 

Just get over it, because...

1. It's a Nikon.

2. It's first and foremost a stills camera aimed at a small-ish niche of pro stills shooters. 

3. Not every camera is supposed to, nor does every camera need to be a state of the art video camera, too. 

 

The only dSLR I have left today has no video features whatsoever, and I'm totally ok with that. Apart from an odd short fusion clip once in a while, I wouldn't want to shoot video (regularly) with a dSLR, anyway. Too clumsy, too awkward. There are better tools for video shooting.

Convergence is just another buzzword, not an imperative. Forced convergence is likely to produce compromises rather than state of the art all over. 

 

Nikon have chosen to aim the D4s (and the Df, ftm) for the stills shooting audience, rather than doing an expensive compromise which, from their existing preconditions, wouldn't be perfect for anyone. The D4s doesn't look anything like a serious video camera in the first place, does it. The usual marketing jargon doesn't change that. If pros fall for the usual gimmicks and jargon, they can blame themselves.

 

 

 

Why is the internal codec once again recording in a non-pro acquisition format on a pro camera? Why are the specs for video hardly any different to a $500 consumer camera like the D3300? Why is Nikon’s live view so frumpy for video use? Why does Nikon think a practical and well built articulated screen is merely a consumer gimmick? Why no video optimised stabilisation systems? Why no 4K as on the GH4? The list goes on, and on, and on…

 

...and the list of whys is pretty pointless. The D4s is, after all, a Nikon, and a Nikon dSLR for taking photos. It's not intended to be a high end video camera. It seems to be doing a rather fine, and rather expected job at being a Nikon.

 

 

 

 

why not put it all on a separate model – a real â€œHD-SLRâ€?

 

Ah, finally you're asking the right question. The only "why" that matters.  ;)

But unfortunately the only people who can answer that sit in the board of Nippon Kogaku Ltd, and they're not likely to answer it.

 

 

 

 

The Panasonic GH4 does have filmmakers and pro video firmly in mind. It is aimed at pros, though priced for consumers.

 

Indeed, and that's one of the options the filmmakers are likely to go for automatically. Unless they are really hardcore dSLR and Nikon luddites. Picking something like the D4s for (state of the art) video wouldn't make much sense.

 

The remaining bunch of Nikon pros and wealthy enthusiasts who still shoot mostly stills will no doubt upgrade their D3s's and D4's to the D4s, and no doubt it's a fine tool for that niche. Horses for courses, and whatever floats one's boat.

 

 

That’s impractical…

And so is having consumer standard video on your $6500 pro camera.

 

 

Well, that's just basic laws of business physics. Nikon are still the market leader along with Canon, and they still have enough marketing inertia to get away with it. Nikon will carry on doing their thing, from their current premise, as long as they can. The price of the product is irrelevant. 

 

As long as the masses follow them more or less blindly, Nikon won't have to come up with a "purple cow," to use a Seth Godin term. Lucky for Nikon they still have some time left, before the underdogs come up with their purple cows powerful enough to turn the tide. Or until the market will change course and bypass them completely.

 

But surely Nikon, too, are designing something different behind the curtain by now. They're just taking their time, because they still can. If they weren't, they'd be pretty short-sighted, or dumb, and one day they'd be in a hurry to survive. The likes of Sony and Panasonic are already busy with their purple cows, and they are doing some progress.

 

So... with my best Elmer voice, trotting around the Nikon booth;

Move along, move along, nothing more to see here. A-thee a-thee a-th... that's all, folks!  :P

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I've said it once, and i'm sure i'll say it again: licensing agreements. Nikon uses Sony sensors, that means Sony gets to tell them what they can and cannot do with them. 

 

It's the only sensible explanation.

 

Maybe to a hc Nikon luddite. To the rest of the population that sounds like a strange excuse, because

[a] The Nikon model with the best video features within the Nikon line, the Nikon 1, has an Aptina sensor

The Nikon model with the second best video features within the Nikon line, the Nikon D5x00, apparently has a Toshiba sensor. 

[c] Panasonic GH3 is using a Sony sensor, whereas the GH4 is using a Panasonic sensor. That doesn't stop Panasonic from giving great video with both models.

 

Surely Sony are not able to dictate the sales of all other sensor plants, let alone their usage in other manufacturers' products. It simply wouldn't make much sense. Sounds more like a fanboy conspiracy theory than a proven fact. That is, without any obvious enough evidence.

 

Besides, the Japanese camera makers are competitors, but they aren't really at a bloody war against each other. They do cross-license and allow each others' tech being used in other brand products all the time, without a need for any drama.

 

Meanwhile, no doubt this Nikon related topic will go on for a good four pages at least. Previously I predicted that the latest Nikon topic would go on for six or nine pages, but it's still going on after thirteen pages to date. Perhaps this one is likely to reach at least six, too, within a few days.

Carry on.   ;)

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You can't generalize. It depends on the bargaining power.  In this case Nikon doesn't really have a video market (to protect), and Sony does. 

 

It's nonsense and you only need to open your eyes to see that. GH3 sensor was labeled "Sony", no crippling in that, it was better than Sony's own interchangeable lens video camera (NEX-VG series) for heavens sake!

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