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Nikon's D3100 digital SLR. Photo provided by Nikon Inc. Nikon D3100: Announced, previewed
(Thursday, August 19, 2010 - 00:01 EDT)

Nikon has today announced its latest entry-level digital SLR -- the D3100 -- and we've just published our Nikon D3100 preview.

The Nikon D3100 slots into the company's product line between the D3000 and D5000 models, although in some specifications it bests almost every camera in Nikon's current digital SLR lineup. The D3100 is based around a brand new Nikon-designed, DX-format, 14.2-megapixel CMOS image sensor, whose output is passed to Nikon's latest generation EXPEED 2 image processor.

Compared to the D3000, this combination allows the Nikon D3100 both a 20% increase in linear resolution, and a much wider range of ISO sensitivities -- 100 to 3,200 equivalents, which can be extended to 12,800 using the Hi settings. It also provides for a live view function with full-time autofocus, even during 1080p movie capture at 24 frames per second. The D3100's still image burst rate is three frames per second, the same as that of the D3000, and it also retains the same eleven-point Multi-Cam 1000 AF system, 420 pixel RGB 3D Color Matrix II metering sensor, Dust Reduction, and Picture Control systems.

The D3100 has a newly designed body that's similar to that of the D3000 in terms of size, but adds a few new controls for both new and existing features. The Nikon D3100's body also supplements the D3000's connectivity with both an input for an optional GPS accessory, and a high-definition HDMI video output. As well as being the first Nikon digital SLR with a Full HD movie mode, the D3100 is also the company's first DSLR to support the latest generation of Secure Digital cards, known as SDXC.

The Nikon D3100 is scheduled to start shipping in the USA from mid-September 2010, in a kit that includes an AF-S NIKKOR 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR lens with optical image stabilization. The Nikon D3100 is expected to retail for around US$700. For more details, read our Nikon D3100 hands-on preview.

Nikon D3100

Nikon's D3100 digital SLR. Photo provided by Nikon Inc. Click for a bigger picture!

Camera TypeSLR
Model NumberNorth America: D3100
Dimensions4.9 x 3.8 x 2.9 in.
(125 x 97 x 74 mm)
Weight17.8 oz (505 g)
Planned Price$700
Planned AvailabilitySeptember 2010
Image Capture
Sensor TypeSony CMOS
Nikon DX (approx. 1.12 in. diagonal)
14.80 megapixels (total)
14.20 megapixels (effective)
Filter TypeRGBG
Focal Length Multiplier1.50
Aspect Ratio3:2
Image Dimensions4608 x 3072 (14.2 megapixels)
3456 x 2304 (8.0 megapixels)
2304 x 1536 (3.5 megapixels)
Capture SpeedContinuous: 3.0 frames per second
Image Preview / Review
ViewfinderYes, SLR type; eye-level pentamirror, 95% coverage, 0.80x mag., 18mm eyepoint, -1.7 to +0.5 diopter
LCD3.0 in. diagonal
230,000 dots (approx. 77,000 pixels)
Lens TypeInterchangeable Lens
3x optical zoom
52mm lens thread
Lens MountNikon F
Image StabilizationYes
Focal Length18.0 - 55.0mm (actual)
27 - 83mm (35mm equivalent)
Aperture Rangef/3.5 - 22 (W), f/5.6 - 38 (T)
Focusing SystemNikon Multi-CAM 1000 11-Area Phase Detection, 1 cross-type, 9 line-type
Has AF assist lamp
Manual focus possible
Focusing RangeNormal: 11" - 4,081 (28 cm - 9,999 cm)
ISO Sensitivity100 - 3,200; expandable to 12800
Shutter Speed30 - 1/4000 second
Exposure ModesAperture, Shutter, Manual
Metering Modes420 segment 3D color matrix metering II, color matrix metering II, center-weighted, spot (3.5mm)
Exposure Compensation+/- 5.0EV in 1/3EV increments
White BalanceExternal - Auto, Incandescent, Fluorescent (7 types), Direct Sunlight, Flash, Cloudy, Shade, Preset Manual;all except Preset Manual with fine tuning
Internal FlashGuide Number: 12
Modes: Red-Eye Reduction, Red-Eye Reduction with Slow Sync, Slow Sync, Rear-Curtain Sync.
Range: Lens dependent
Flash Exposure Compensation+/- -3.0EV in 1/3EV increments
Scene ModesPortrait, Landscape, Child, Sports, Close up, Night portrait
Self TimerYes, 10 or 2 seconds
Movie FormatMOV H.264/MPEG-4 with audio
Max. clip length: 600 seconds ()
Recording MediumSD/MMC including SDHC, SDXC
File SystemFAT16, FAT32, complies with Design Rule for Camera File System (DCF)
File FormatRAW (.NEF), RAW+JPEG, JPEG (EXIF 2.21)
VideoHigh definition: Yes (HDMI)
Standard definition: Yes, NTSC / PAL switchable
ComputerUSB 2.0 High Speed
OtherType C mini-HDMI with CEC, Accessory Terminal (MC-DC2 remote cord or GP-1 GPS unit)
Battery TypeLithium-ion rechargeable
Battery Form FactorProprietary EN-EL14
Product Bundle
Softw reNikon Software Suite CD-ROM
Battery / Charger1 x Proprietary EN-EL14 Lithium-ion rechargeable battery and charger
Digital Print Order Format (DPOF) compliantYes
PictBridge CompliantYes
Internal MicrophoneYes
Internal SpeakerYes
Tripod MountYes, Metal
Remote ControlYes, Optional, MC-DC2 corded
Notes1080p HD movies, Quite Shutter mode, new full-time AF in Movie mode.
More Photos

Nikon's D3100 digital SLR. Photo provided by Nikon Inc. Click for a bigger picture!

Nikon's D3100 digital SLR. Photo provided by Nikon Inc. Click for a bigger picture!


Original Source Press Release:

The New Nikon D3100 D-SLR Empowers And Inspires Users As The Simple Solution To Stunning Pictures And Amazing HD Video

Enhanced Guide Mode and the Ability to Shoot 1080p High Definition (HD) Video with Full Time Auto Focus Allow Users to Capture with Confidence

MELVILLE, N.Y. (AUGUST 19, 2010) – The new Nikon D3100 digital SLR camera speaks to the growing ranks of enthusiastic D-SLR users and aspiring photographers by providing an easy-to-use and affordable entrance to the world of Nikon D-SLR ’s. The 14.2-megapixel D3100 has powerful features, such as the enhanced Guide Mode that makes it easy to unleash creative potential and capture memories with still images and full HD video. Like having a personal photo tutor at your fingertips, this unique feature provides a simple graphical interface on the camera’s LCD that guides users by suggesting and/or adjusting camera settings to achieve the desired end result images. The D3100 is also the world’s first D-SLR to introduce full time auto focus (AF) in Live View and D-Movie mode to effortlessly achieve the critical focus needed when shooting Full HD 1080p video.

Packed into the compact and lightweight body of the D3100 camera is a host of advanced Nikon technologies, such as the new EXPEED 2 image processing engine. EXPEED 2 in conjunction with Nikon’s new 14.2 megapixel DX-format CMOS sensor is the driving force behind the enhanced performance and rich image quality. Ready to go wherever life leads, the D3100 features split second shutter response and a blazing fast 11-point AF system to help ensure tack-sharp images. For shooting in challenging lighting conditions, ISO 3200 (expandable to 12,800) enables versatility in environments such as indoors or in the evening hours.

“People are stepping up to digital SLR cameras – consumers are embracing the enhanced performance, amazing image quality and options for lenses and accessories that only a D-SLR can provide,” said Lisa Osorio, general manager of Marketing at Nikon Inc. “The D3100 is a camera that makes it easy to take beautiful pictures and will grow with the user, unlocking their potential and assisting in creating lasting memories or amazing art.“

Get Inspired With The Guide Mode
Whether new to D-SLR photography or exploring new shooting techniques, the D3100 features an enhanced Guide Mode with an easy-to-use interface to help customers build confidence in using their D-SLR through on-demand, step-by-step assistance. A stand out feature in the D3100 ’s predecessor, the D3000, the Guide Mode is easily accessed through the Mode Dial on the top of the camera. This enhanced help function now features sample assist images that change with camera settings to inspire consumers to achieve a desired look and feel to their images, while guiding through easy to understand photographic techniques. For example, to instill the majestic appearance of moving water, users can select “show water flowing” from the Guide Mode, and simply follow the prompts to create the ideal camera settings to capture an amazing image.

By following the guidance on the bright 3-inch LCD screen, users can achieve professional looking photographs to be proud of. Whether looking to soften backgrounds, freeze a moment in time or convey motion, the Guide Mode assists users in exploring effective picture taking solutions at their own pace to make capturing great pictures even easier and enjoyable.

Full HD Video Made Easy with D-Movie
The Nikon D3100 D-SLR allows users to capture stunning Full HD, 1080p resolution (1920x1080) movies. Users can record cinematic quality 24p video clips, or shoot at 24 or 30 fps at 720p, ideal for sharing online. By incorporating versatile NIKKOR lenses to the equation, users can now create a variety of photography effects to video such as isolating subjects with a shallow depth of field, and recording in low light conditions. NIKKOR lenses also deliver the sharpness needed for HD video, and Nikon ’s Vibration Reduction (VR) II technology helps to eliminate camera shake.

While Nikon pioneered HD video in a D-SLR, Nikon is now introducing another industry first to enrich the user experience: The D3100 is the first D-SLR to implement full time AF for D-Movie video shooting and while in Live View mode. Using contrast based AF, the D3100 automatically focuses on subjects when Live View is activated to aid shooting when using the LCD. The D3100 camera also uses Face Detection technology to lock focus on up to 35 human faces, a feat not even accomplished with consumer camcorders. To further simplify movie shooting, Live View is activated at a single flick of a dedicated switch, and HD video recording is achieved by a simple press of a button.

Sharing and editing video clips is also easier than ever, as the D3100 records movies in the versatile H.264 AVCHD codec (.mov file). While playing movies back in the camera, users are able to edit recorded videos by clipping footage from the beginning or end of a movie. High Definition movies and stills can be shared with family and friends on an HD television via HDMI output, and control slideshows and video using the HDMI Consumer Electronics Control (CEC) interface that is a part of most modern remote controls from HDTV manufacturers. Additionally, the D3100 is compatible with the new SDXC memory card format to store large amounts of photo and video data so users can shoot multiple scenes without interruption.

Renowned Nikon Technology
The D3100 leverages proven Nikon technologies to create the most positive picture taking experience for consumers of any skill level. With its new 14.2-megapixel CMOS image sensor and Nikon ’s new EXPEED 2 image processing system, the D3100 delivers exceptional image quality with low noise. The new EXPEED 2 image-processing engine enhances camera performance and helps to ensure brilliant image quality while managing color, contrast, exposure, noise and speed for optimal results. The D3100’s normal ISO range extends from ISO 100 to 3200, allowing users to capture stunning images, even in low light environments. Additionally, the D3100’s ISO range can expand to a Hi-2 setting of ISO 12,800, furthering the opportunities for low-light shots that other cameras miss.

Other exclusive Nikon technologies include the Active D-Lighting system, which automatically rescues dark or backlit images to help create flattering images with even tones. This is especially useful when photographing subjects that are backlit by the sun or lights to provide an even exposure.

What’s more, Nikon’s Scene Recognition system draws upon the 420-pixel RGB color 3D Matrix Meter for outstanding exposures under a variety of lighting conditions by integrating a database of tens of thousands of sample images. The result is a camera intelligent enough to recognize when photographing a specific scene such as a portrait or landscape and automatically choose the proper camera settings.

To make taking great pictures even easier, the D3100 elevates Nikon COOLPIX technology and incorporates an Auto Scene Selector feature in Live View. This innovative function automatically selects the best scene mode to match shooting conditions. When engaged, the camera will automatically recognize when shooting a lush landscape or fast action sports and adjust the camera settings to create an astounding image. Six preset scene modes can also be accessed with the Mode Dial on top of the camera to overcome many common shooting challenges.

Compact Design. Huge Performance.
With comfortable yet intelligent ergonomics, the D3100 packs powerful technology that ’s easy to use into a compact form factor. The advanced 11-point autofocus system of the D3100 makes it easy to find and focus on a subject through an enhanced viewfinder design with new “hollow” focus points to give a clear view of the subject.

In the playing field or the backyard, the benefits of Nikon’s advanced 3D Subject Tracking become clear, as the camera continuously focuses on fast moving subjects throughout the frame, resulting in crisp, clear action shots. Additionally, the D3100 offers split-second shutter response, eliminating the frustration of shutter lag—the annoying delay that ruins so many pictures. With the ability to capture images at up to three frames-per-second, users never miss a moment.

Also added to the D3100 is a Quiet Shutter Release mode, which substantially reduces the sound of the mirror while shooting. Quickly accessed by selecting “Q” on the release mode dial, this feature is ideal for the photographer who wishes to remain unobtrusive, for example during quiet ceremonies or photographing a sleeping baby.

Nikon also empowers users to prepare their photos for sharing quickly and easily using Nikon’s extensive in-camera Retouch Menu, which easily applies a variety of fun and dramatic effects to images without a computer. Fun and easy-to-use adjustments include a miniature effect to photos, image overlay, color outline and softening filters for flattering portraits and realistic skin tones.

The D3100 also incorporates Nikon’s Integrated Dust Reduction System, which offers a comprehensive solution that combats the accumulation of image-degrading dust from the camera’s image sensor. The shutter is tested to 100,000 cycles for maximum durability, ensuring years of captured memories.

Gateway to Legendary NIKKOR Optics and Accessories
Nikon has also introduced the ideal companion to the D3100, the brand new AF-S DX NIKKOR 55-300mm VR lens, gives users super-telephoto zoom capability for an affordable price. This is a perfect complimentary lens when combined with the AF-S 18-55mm VR kit lens, and is great for capturing images of sports and wildlife around town or on vacation. Photographers can also appreciate the D3100 ’s system expandability, as it is compatible with more than 40 legendary NIKKOR AF-S interchangeable lenses. While the D3100 offers a versatile built-in flash, the camera also operates with Nikon’s Creative Lighting System and is capable of Advanced Wireless Lighting when using the SB-900 Speedlight or the SU-800 Wireless Commander. The D3100 D-SLR’s design also supports Eye-Fi memory card functionality, enabling the convenient wireless transfer of images from the camera to a computer, when using Eye-Fi memory cards. Also included is a new version of Nikon’s powerful image editing application, View NX2. The latest edition of this software allows users to organize and edit both photos and video files easily.

Price and Availability
The D3100 D-SLR camera outfit, including the versatile AF-S NIKKOR 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR image stabilization lens, is scheduled to be available at Nikon Authorized dealers beginning in mid September 2010, at an estimated selling price of $699.95.* The AF-S DX NIKKOR 55-300mm f/4.5-5.6G ED VR lens will be available starting in September for $399.95*. For more information, please visit http://www.nikonusa.com, which links all levels of photographers to the Web's most comprehensive photo learning and sharing communities.
*Estimated selling price listed is only an estimate. Actual prices are set by dealers and are subject to change at any time.


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