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Electronic shutter vs. mechanical shutter

Discussion in 'Nikon DX DSLR Forum' started by jamesd3rd, Jul 1, 2008.

  1. jamesd3rd


    May 4, 2007
    So. Cal
    I was wondering if anyone had any theories as to why Nikon didn't stick with the faster flash sync speed of the electronic shutter on their more recent bodies?

    Did they not feel is was cost effective? Wouldn't a faster flash sync speed be something everyone would want?
  2. cotdt


    Jul 14, 2007
    Bay Area, USA
    Only their 6MP sensor has an electronic/digital shutter

    that is not to be confused with electromechanical shutters, which all Nikon DSLRs have.
  3. ultimind


    May 13, 2007
    Cleveland, OH
    I've quite enjoyed the 1/500th flash sync for shooting outdoors with my D70. :smile:

    It will be a bit strange when I switch to something new and have half the shutter speed with flash.
  4. spoot


    Aug 29, 2007
    Does anyone know why they do not still use and digital shutter? The only reason I can think of is that the electrical current might mess with the sensor and increase the noise. Other than that, it would seem that the digital one has many advantages to the mechanical, such as faster sync speed, increase life, etc.
  5. jamesd3rd


    May 4, 2007
    So. Cal

    That's what I would like to know. Why would they not continue to add it to their other bodies. To me going to a mechanical shutter when you can use an electronic shutter is going backwards.

    1/500th flash sync.....1/200th or 1/250th? Seems more than a no brainer to me.
  6. fks


    Apr 30, 2005
    sf bay area
    according to thom hogan, it has to do with a change in the way data is read off the sensor. i have no experience with that, maybe someone with a chip design background can confirm this

  7. TonyBeach

    TonyBeach Guest

    Blooming. The problem was noticeable on electronic shutters and Nikon solved it by returning to mechanical shutters.
  8. Thom's right, just like Mom said, "Kid, there ain't no free lunch".

    Read this for more information especially if you like articles which start out with, ".......a capacitive coupled bipolar active pixel based imager
    having overflow protection and electronic shuttering features.":eek: 

    Bottom line: Electronic shutters must be designed with pixels which are read by the camera's processor in such a way that the image quality is sacrificed. That's why, in spite of some attractive features like high sync speed, you don't see them in high end cameras, at least in today's market.
  9. dan1son


    Sep 24, 2007
    Basically the sensor in the 6mp Nikon cameras has a mechanical shutter as a way to block light to the sensor to improve performance. It's not really required per se. The sensor itself is told when to start grabbing light for a shot. That's the same way almost every P&S camera works as well. So the shutter gets out of the way, THEN the sensor is activated, then the shutter covers it up.

    A purely mechanical shutter gets out of the way to let the actual light in. The "higher end" sensors don't have electronic shutters because of the extra cost require to design them that way and to build the sensor. It's relatively easier to design a good sensor that is activated when the light hits it and not when it's told to start reading. The light grabbing materials can be more accurate if they don't constantly see light.
  10. I just bought a new D70S , old stock , brand new 12 month Nikon waranty because it has the 1005 segment meter and high speed flash synch . I played around with my SB24 and 1/2000th sec .

    Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)

    It didn't quite catch all the light at 1/8000th sec but I can live with that , and whatever supposed loss in image quality that I can't detect .

    Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)
  11. One thing nice about the D70 shutter is when you lock up the mirror and remove power it stays up for sensor glass cleaning.
  12. Now that's some useful information ! I've seriously considered getting rid of the D80 with its awful metering system and getting another D70S to replace it .
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