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Nikon D40 Digital SLR Camera
First Look Review


Extraordinary Nikon digital SLR picture quality in a camera that is
smaller, lighter, easier to use, and more affordable than ever.
Seeing is believing with the Nikon D40



 

 

 


 

 

Nov 16th, 2006

Nikon has today officially introduced the 6.1 megapixel Nikon D40 digital SLR camera, and a
new companion AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G II ED zoom lens. The entry level Nikon D40 is a successor to the popular Nikon D50 digital SLR and is mainly geared at first time users moving from a 35mm SLR, or upgrading from a consumer type digital camera into the world of digital SLR photography.

Designed for a broad range of customers, from novices to advanced amateur enthusiasts, the Nikon D40 digital SLR will allow photographers to easily adopt D-SLR technology and begin building a system that will bring ongoing enjoyment in the future.


Developed as an ideal match for daily use with the Nikon D40 digital SLR, while fully compatible with all Nikon D-Series SLR models, the new AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G ED II zoom lens looks attractive, is more compact and provides a practical focal range for most general applications.

The Nikon D40 employs the same Nikon DX Format sensor and Nikon F lens mount as the Nikon D50. This allows photographers to take full advantage of most DX Nikkor lenses which are optimized to achieve maximum center-to-edge-to-corner image quality.

To make the Nikon D40 even lighter Nikon has removed the AF motor from the camera body so that unlike the Nikon D50 digital SLR the Nikon D40 only offers AF operation with Nikon's AF-S type lenses.

The AF DX 10.5mm Fisheye Nikkor is not auto focus compatible with the Nikon D40 digital SLR. (AF does work with the Nikon D50)


The manufacturer's recommended retail price for the Nikon D40 digital SLR kit with the new DX 18-55mm II zoom lens will be $749 Canadian. The Nikon D40 body only will have an MSRP of $649.

The Nikon D40 digital SLR kit with 18-55mm lens will be priced at $599 in the US. The camera is expected to be available by Dec. In some countries, the Nikon D40 digital SLR will also be available in a silver version. (Black only in Canada)


Nikon D40 DSLR Major Features


  • 6.1 effective megapixel Nikon DX Format CCD imaging sensor that produces 3,008 x 2,000-pixel images with accurate color, high resolution and sharp details for great pictures capable of significant enlargement, or cropping for creative effect. File sizes remain manageable, making it easier to take and store more great pictures


  • The Nikon D40 is a more compact, lightweight Nikon digital SLR camera than the Nikon D50. New frame construction, mechanical and electronic mechanisms, and circuitry have been developed to enable the smaller, more lightweight and power-efficient design

  • The Nikon D40 features a large 2.5-in, 230,000-dot low-temperature polysilicon TFT LCD monitor with a 170 degree viewing angle the same as the Nikon D80 and the Nikon D200. Since the D40 does not feature a top LCD information panel like on the Nikon D50, D80 and other Nikon digital SLR's, all camera information and settings are also displayed on the Nikon D40's rear LCD monitor


  • You can select from 3 shooting information display formats: "Classic", "Graphic", and "Wallpaper"

  •    
    Classic
    Graphic
    Wallpaper: select photo or download

  • Fast power-up time of approximately 0.18 seconds; the Nikon D40 exhibits quick response for capturing those fleeting and unexpected shots

  • The Nikon D40 supports the full line-up of AF-S Nikkor lenses. Autofocus is only possible when AF-S or AF-I Nikkor lenses with a built-in autofocus motor are used.

    Manual focus using the in-focus indicator in the electronic range finder display is possible with most AF Nikkor lenses. The lens-drive motor built into other camera models like the Nikon D50 and Nikon D80 has been eliminated.

Fast 3-area AF system delivers consistent subject acquisition and focus tracking to capture the action as it happens.

Automatic AF-assist illuminator helps ensure AF performance in dark situations.

Focus Area brackets illuminate in red to show which AF area is active.

  • The Nikon D40 features a retouch menu that offers options for editing images recorded to the memory card in a number of ways including adding special effects or reducing size similar to the options on the Nikon D80 digital SLR. Options include D-lighting, Red Eye correction, Trim, Monochrome (B&W), Filter effects, Small Picture, and Image Overlay

Nikon D40 compared to the Nikon D50

Nikon D40
Nikon D50


  • To maximize performance throughout the infinite range of potential picture scenes, the Nikon D40 provides a choice of three TTL (Through The Lens) exposure modes: 3D Colour Matrix Metering II for quick changing conditions (default), Center-Weighted for strong backlighting and more personal control, and Spot Meters that give you total control of exposure when you have lots of time to set up the shot.

  • The Nikon D40 mode dial features eight handy Digital Vari-Program selections that automaticically adjust settings, including ISO-equivalent sensitivity, white balance, sharpening, tone (contrast), color, saturation and hue for results that match the intended shot.

    Selections include Auto, Flash Off, Portrait, Landscape, Child, Sports, Close up, and Night Portrait. The Nikon D40 offers a shutter speed range from 30 to 1/4,000 sec.


  • The "Auto (flash off)" mode has been added to the Digital Vari-Programs for shooting in situations where flash photography is prohibited or not desired. (Not available on the Nikon D50)

  • The Nikon D40 features a built-in auto pop-up flash that provides Nikon's exclusive i-TTL flash control, fast 1/500 sec.flash sync shutter speed for great fill-effects under brighter light and back-lighted conditions or to freeze motion.


  • Built-in flash exposure compensation can be selected on the Nikon D40 from -3 EV to +1 EV
  • Automatic control over ISO-equivalent sensitivity from ISO 200 to 1600; can also be set manually to HI 1 (3200 ISO boost)

  • New Function and menu selection screens with sample images that make functions easier to understand, even for beginners

  • The Nikon D40 digital SLR features a setup menu and Custom Settings that offer a wide variety of settings to suit individual preferences.

    Choose "Simple" to display the most basic menu items, "Full" to display all menu items, or "My menu" to display a customized list of menu items



  • Extensive Anti Dust Prevention Measures: The following lists the measures taken to prevent dust or foreign matter on the surface of the optical low-pass filter (OLPF) on the Nikon D40 digital SLR

The OLPF has an antistatic design to prevent static electricity from attracting dust and foreign matter to its surface

The area surrounding the rear surface of the image sensor is sealed to help prevent dust and foreign matter from entering from the rear

The Nikon D40 is designed to maintain a space between the imaging surface of the image sensor and the surface of the OLPF. As dust and foreign matter on the image sensor do not form a sharp image (degree of sharpness also varies with aperture value), it is less likely for such dust and/or foreign matter to have an effect on photographs

The Nikon D40 is designed so that the moving parts such as the shutter and quick-return mirror produce very little of the dust and particles associated with mechanical wear of new parts inside a camera

The Nikon D40 offers a "Dust Off" feature with the optional Nikon Capture NX software that allows you to map out the dust on the sensor and have the software remove it automatically

  • New compact rechargeable Li-ion battery EN-EL9 and MH-23 battery charger developed specifically for the Nikon D40 digital SLR

EN-EL9 battery for the Nikon D40

  • Image enhancement options provide versatile sharpening, tone (contrast), color, saturation or hue while using Auto Multi Program [P], Shutter-Priority Auto [S], Aperture-Priority Auto [A], or Manual [M] exposure modes to help match picture taking situations.


  • The Nikon D40 features a convenient "Help" display that provides a short description on the selected camera feature

  • A choice of three color modes ensures the best match for the shot when operating the camera manually.
    Mode Ia: Renders natural-looking skin tones out of the camera. (sRGB)
    Mode II: Realizes a wider color range suited for processing or retouching. (Adobe RGB)
    Mode IIIa: Renders vivid landscape and flora colors out of the camera. (sRGB)


  • Simultaneous recording of Compressed RAW (NEF) and JPEG image files for the same shot helps by providing a smaller JPEG image file that can be quickly sent via email, along with a Compressed RAW (NEF) file for more creative flexibility to enhance pictures using Nikon PictureProject or Nikon Capture software.


Nikon D40 Digital SLR 360° View


The Nikon D40 digital SLR features intuitive and familiar operation with ergonomically designed and sensibly located buttons and controls, including the handy multi selector and mode dial
 

  • Wireless remote control of the Nikon D40 is available with the optional ML-L3 remote control.

  • New Small Picture function for saving photos within the camera at the reduced sizes of 640x480, 320x240, or 160x120 for Internet use - either for mail attachments or placement on web pages.

  • In-camera page setup support makes it easy to print directly from the Nikon D40 to any PictBridge compatible printer via the supplied USB cable.

  • Up to 36 alphanumeric characters can be entered in each image's EXIF header (file information) for personalized identification when images are viewed on a computer.

  • Optional video cable makes it easy to connect the Nikon D40 digital SLR directly to a television for playing slideshows or viewing individual images.

  • The Nikon D40 supports Nikon's Creative Lighting System when using the new Nikon SB-400, or either the SB-800 or SB-600 Speedlights mounted on the D40 flash shoe for longer distance shooting situations.
  • Nikon D40 with Nikon SB-400 Speedlight

    Buy the Nikon D40 Digital SLR kit at Adorama


  • PictureProject is Nikon's versatile software that extends the enjoyment of photography into your computer. Simplified image transfer helps move images easily from camera to computer, where PictureProject's intuitive interface lets photographers effectively organize and edit, apply selected effects, design album page layouts, or share their images.

    Adding to the fun, a complimentary copy is included with the purchase of any Nikon digital camera. The combination of direct printing with Pictbridge technology and in-computer PictureProject technology empowers users with great picture performance.

 

Included in the box

  • Rechargeable Li-ion Battery EN-EL9
  • Nikon Quick Charger MH-23
  • USB Cable UC-E4
  • Camera Strap AN-DC1
  • Accessory Shoe Cover BS-1
  • Body Cap BF-1A
  • Rubber Eyecup DK-16
  • Viewfinder Eyepiece Cap DK-5
  • Nikon D40 Quick Start Guide
  • Nikon D40 instruction manual
  • 2 year Warranty in Canada
  • 123 of Digital Imaging CD Full Version
    by Vincent Bockaert (in Canada)
  • Nikon PictureProject Software
  • A video output cable is optional with the D40
Optional Nikon Capture NX Software

 

  See related products:
 

Nikon D40 digital SLR kit in silver
Nikon D40 Digital SLR Silver Model (Not sold in Canada)


Nikon D40 Digital SLR Specifications


Specifications

Nikon D40 Digital SLR

Effective Pixels

6.1 million

Image Sensor

RGB CCD, 23.7 x 15.6 mm; total pixels: 6.24 million, Nikon DX format

Image Size (pixels)

3,008 x 2,000 [L], 2,256 x 1,496 [M], 1,504 x 1,000 [S]

ISO Sensitivity

200 to 1,600 in steps of 1 EV with additional setting one step over 1600

Storage Media

SD memory card, SDHC compliant for use with larger size memory cards

Storage System

Compressed NEF (RAW): 12-bit compression, JPEG: JPEG baseline compliant

White Balance

Auto (TTL white-balance with 420-pixel RGB sensor), six manual modes with fine-tuning and preset white balance

Fast Response 0.18 sec start up

LCD Monitor

2.5-in., 230,000-dot, low-temperature polysilicon TFT LCD with brightness adjustment

Playback Function

1 frame; Thumbnail (4 or 9 segments); Magnifying playback; Slide show; Histogram indication; Highlight point display; Auto image rotation

Retouch Menu for creative in-camera image editing and effects Included in the Retouch menu is Nikon's D-Lighting, which automatically brings out detail from the dark areas of a scene, producing a more pleasing exposure balance. Red-eye correction locates the red-eye effect sometimes caused by a flash and corrects it automatically. Image Trim allows for creative cropping of an image and creates smaller files for easy e-mailing. Other creative features include Image Overlay (combine two RAW images), Small Picture (resize image), Monochrome Effects (Black-and-white, Sepia, Cyanotype) and Filter Effects (Skylight, Warm filter, Color balance).

Delete Function

Card format, All frames delete, Selected frames delete

Video Output

NTSC or PAL

Interface

USB: Mass Storage and PTP selectable

Text Input

Up to 36 characters of alphanumeric text input available with LCD monitor and multi selector; stored in Exif header

Compatible Lenses*1

Nikon F mount with AF coupling and AF contacts

Type G or D AF Nikkor 1) AF-S, AF-I: All functions supported, 2) Other Type G or D AF Nikkor: All functions supported except autofocus, 3) PC Micro-Nikkor 85mm f/2.8D: Can only be used in mode M; all other functions supported except autofocus, 4) Other AF Nikkor*2/AI-P Nikkor: All functions supported except autofocus and 3D Color Matrix Metering II, 5): Non-CPU: Can be used in mode M, but exposure meter does not function; electronic range finder can be used if maximum aperture is f/5.6 or faster *1. IX Nikkor lenses can not be used *2. Excluding lenses for F3AF

Picture Angle

Equivalent in 35mm [135] format is approx. 1.5 times lens focal length

Viewfinder

Fixed-eyelevel penta-Dach mirror type; built-in diopter adjustment (-1.7 to +0.5m-1)

Eyepoint

18mm (-1.0 m-1)

Focusing Screen

Type B BriteView Clear Matte screen Mark V with superimposed focus brackets

Viewfinder Frame Coverage

Approx. 95% (vertical/horizontal)

Viewfinder Magnification

Approx. 0.8x with 50mm lens at infinity; -1.0 m-1

Viewfinder Information

Focus indications, AE/FV lock indicator, Shutter speed, Aperture value, Exposure/Exposure compensation indicator, Exposure mode, Flash output level compensation, Exposure compensation, Number of remaining exposures, Flash-ready indicator

Autofocus

TTL phase detection by Nikon Multi-CAM530 autofocus module with AF-assist (range approximately 0.5-3.0m/1ft. 8in.-9ft. 10in.); Detection range: -1 to +19 EV (ISO 100 at 20C/68F)

Lens Servo

1) Autofocus (AF): Instant single-servo AF (AF-S); continuous servo AF (AF-C); auto AF-S/AF-C selection (AF-A); predictive focus tracking automatically activated according to subject status, 2) Manual focus (M)

Focus Area

Can be selected from 3 focus areas

AF Area Modes

1) Single Area AF, 2) Dynamic Area AF, 3) Dynamic Area AF with Closest Subject Priority

Focus Lock

Focus can be locked by pressing shutter-release button halfway (single-servo AF) or by pressing AE-L/AF-L button

Exposure Metering System

TTL full-aperture exposure metering system

1) 3D Color Matrix Metering II (type G and D lenses); Color Matrix Metering II (other CPU lenses); metering performed by 420-segment RGB sensor

2) Center-weighted: Weight of 75% given to 8mm circle in center of frame

3) Spot: Meters 3.5mm circle (about 2.5% of frame) centered on active focus area

Exposure Metering Range

1) 0 to 20 EV (3D Color Matrix or center-weighted metering), 2) 2 to 20 EV (spot metering)

Exposure Modes

Digital Vari-program (Auto, Auto [Flash Off], Portrait, Landscape, Child, Sports, Close Up, Night Portrait), Programmed Auto (P) with flexible program; Shutter-Priority Auto (S); Aperture Priority Auto (A); Manual (M)

Exposure Compensation

5 EV in increments of 1/3 EV

Exposure Lock

Exposure locked at detected value with AE-L/AF-L button

Shooting Modes

1) Single frame shooting mode, 2) Continuous shooting mode: approx. 2.5 frames per second*, 3) Self-timer mode, 4) Delayed remote mode: 2 s. delay, 5) Quick-response remote mode *Approx. 1.7 frames per second with Noise reduction turned on and approx. 1 frame per second with ISO HI 1

Shutter

Combined mechanical and CCD electronic shutter, 30 to 1/4000 s. in steps of 1/3, bulb

Sync Contact

X-contact only; flash synchronization at up to 1/500 s.

Flash Control

1) TTL: TTL flash control by 420-segment RGB sensor. i-TTL balanced fill-flash for digital SLR and standard i-TTL fill-flash for digital SLR available when CPU lens is used with built-in flash, SB-800, SB-600, and T041, 2) Auto aperture: Available with SB-800 with CPU lens, 3) Non-TTL Auto: Available with Speedlights such as SB-800, 80DX, 28DX, 28, 27, and 22s , 4) Range-priority manual available with SB-800

Flash Sync Modes

AUTO, Portrait, Child, Close Up: Auto, auto with red-eye reduction; fill-flash and red-eye reduction available with optional Speedlight

Night portrait mode: Auto, auto slow sync, auto slow sync with red-eye reduction; slow sync and slow sync with red-eye reduction available with optional Speedlight

Landscape, Sport mode: Fill-flash and red-eye reduction available with optional Speedlight

P, A: Fill flash, rear-curtain with slow sync, slow sync, slow sync with red-eye reduction, red-eye reduction

S, M: Fill flash, rear-curtain sync, red-eye reduction

Built-in Flash

AUTO, Portrait, Child, Close Up, Night Portrait mode: Auto flash with auto pop-up

P/S/A/M: Manual pop-up with button release

Guide number (ISO 200/ISO 100, m [ft.]): approx.17 [55]/12 [39] (manual full 18 [59]/13 [42])

Flash Compensation

-3 to +1 EV in increments of 1/3 EV

Accessory Shoe

Standard ISO hot-shoe contact with sync, signal, and ground contacts and safety lock

Self-timer

Electronically controlled timer with duration of 2, 5, 10 or 20 s.

Remote Control

Via Wireless Remote Control ML-L3 (optional)

Power Source

One Rechargeable Li-ion Battery EN-EL9; charging voltage (MH-23 quick charger): 7.4V DC, AC Adapter EH-5 (available separately; requires optional AC Adapter Connector EP-5)

Tripod Socket

1/4 in. (ISO1222)

Body Color

Black (Silver version is also available depending on country or area.)

Dimensions (W x D x H)

Approx. 126 x 64 x 94mm (5.0 x 2.5 x 3.7 in.)

Weight

Approx. 475g (1lb. 1oz.) without battery, memory card or body cap

Supplied Accessories*

Rechargeable Li-ion Battery EN-EL9, Quick Charger MH-23, USB Cable UC-E4, PictureProject, Rubber Eyecup DK-16, Camera Strap, Body Cap BF-1A, Eyepiece Cap DK-5, Accessory Shoe Cap BS-1

Optional Accessories

Wireless Remote Control ML-L3, Capture NX, Camera Control Pro, AC Adapter Connector EP-5, AC Adapter EH-5, Video Cable EG-D100, Semi Soft-Case CF-DC1, Speedlight SB-800/600/T041/R1C1

*Supplied accessories may differ depending on country or area.


 

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