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Next-Up -> Consumer grade FX

Discussion in 'Nikon DX DSLR Forum' started by Nuteshack, Jul 5, 2008.

  1. Nuteshack

    Nuteshack Guest

    just following the progression of the d2x, d200, d80. we now see the d3, d700 and ???,,,but, at a much faster pace:biggrin: i don't think it's a matter of "IF" but "WHEN"....what say u?

    it appears Nikon is taking the DSLR market by storm:cool: 
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 6, 2008
  2. digitalzed


    May 14, 2006
    N. Cal
    Christmas 2008 or 2009, latest. We used to wait about 2 years between major launches. Now it's 6 months. It has to be coming soon because there just won't be many new technological advances to keep people buying new bodies. Once we get 48 MP FF sensors, 35000 + ISO, built in GPS, and all the other features that all companies must be working toward to make the latest and greatest cameras, there's no other way than to feed the masses and make up sales volume. And at today's rate of development, FF for USD$899.00 (body only of course) at Costco is just around the proverbial corner...
  3. sagar


    Jun 29, 2008
    It depends on how you clasify consumer grade FF...if you are refering to sub $1000 then I don't think it will happen soon...because camera companies will have to change entire economics of the business...imagine if you are getting a D80 quality FF, would you consider buying D7xx or whatever pro cameras fot 2000/3000+ unless its absolutely necessary ?
  4. digitalzed


    May 14, 2006
    N. Cal
    The D80 offers a lot of what the D200 had to offer, at a significantly lower price. Sure it's not the same camera and not aimed at the same user. Plastic versus magnesium body and all that. But I can see a FX model based on the idea of a less expensive, stripped down higher end camera. Look what the D700 has taken from the D3. Who thought that would happen in 7 months? So I can see a plastic body, lesser function FX camera in the not too distant future. At USD$899.00? Maybe!
  5. mfletch


    Jul 16, 2007
    I think we're still several years away from sub $1k FX bodies. But I agree with the progression. If within the next 9 months or so, Nikon dropped a plastic body, 3fps, 12mp FX body at say... $1499, there wouldn't be a problem finding buyers.
  6. pforsell


    Jan 15, 2008
    ISO 35,000 is nothing. It is only about 1/3 stop higher than the current top speed of ISO 25,600. Let's start to talk about ISO 102,400 :biggrin: That is 2 stops higher than the HI-2 setting (25,600) in D3 and D700.

    Just kidding.

    EDIT: ups my calculating skills aren't what they used to be. They never were. According to windows calc the result of 4 x 25,600 is 102,400.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 6, 2008
  7. Nuteshack

    Nuteshack Guest

    what's to kid about? lol
  8. TonyBeach

    TonyBeach Guest

    Nikon has been concentrating on pro and higher end cameras of late, so I wouldn't hold my breath (or dollars) in anticipation for a consumer FX DSLR.

    One things for sure; we'll never see a $400 FX DSLR, but Nikon suggested they would make a $400 DX DSLR. I can safely say this because even when FX sensors are inexpensive enough to put into low end consumer bodies, inflation will insure the price is much higher than $400.

    Taking the difference in price between a D700 and a D300 as a basis, a D70/D80 body with an FX sensor will probably cost about $1500; all this sub $1000 speculation is wishful thinking based on the same mistaken premises that had everyone speculating that the D700 would cost around $2000.
  9. Heck, I would love a consumer DX DSLR instead, aka D90. I used to own a D70, and when the prices of the D200 tanked after the D300 intro I took the plunge and bought a used D200. It has been 8 months since my purchase, and I still don't like the ergonomics of the D200. The grip is thinner and does not feel right in my hand, the size of the body is large enough so that I have to reach a bit for some of the buttons, and the weight is just too much. No, I am not a small guy, over 6' and 200 lbs, so it is not like I can't handle the weight. When Nikon introduces the D90 I will probably dump the D200 for whatever the going rate is and upgrade as soon as some of the initial bugs are shaken out.

    I am sure that this is what people were saying about personal computers in 1985, and about laptops in 1995. Sure, the economics of the market are different, but when it comes to technology I would never say never.
  10. TonyBeach

    TonyBeach Guest

    Everyone is different, so I prefer the D200 and D300 bodies; but understand that is a problem for your bigger hands, although you turn around and say the controls are spread out too much. I can't stand the D70 or D80, they're just too small and the body has no real estate to place important controls that I prefer not to dig around for in menus. I'm smaller than you are but I also clean windows for a living, so you might be shocked if you arm wrestled me despite my 5' 7" frame (although I'm carrying a lot more weight then when I used to ride my bicycle 200 miles in a day); so toting a D200 or D300 with a big lens attached to it around for even hours at a time is no bother to me. I think the biggest issue with the handling the weight of a camera and lens is balancing it by holding it the right way -- and holding a big camera the wrong way will quickly punish even a big strong guy.

    There are two problems with your scenario if it is applied to FX. First, is that an FX camera requires a larger mirror as well as the larger sensor -- so right away the body is bigger. Next is that mirror is heavier and causes more vibration, so putting that on a smaller body causes problems (there's a reason beyond the larger mirror and sensor that the D700 weighs noticeably more than the D300). Anyway, the D90 will not be FX.

    Inflation and current sensor costs makes my modest prediction solid. Heck, we should have had a $400 DX DSLR by now, but that prospect is slipping away on the basis of inflation. I would not be surprised if in inflation adjusted dollars we eventually see a $600 FX DSLR -- maybe within 6 years.
  11. Nuteshack

    Nuteshack Guest

    well, i certainly wouldn't wana guess price on the consumer FX. but i'm confident they'll milk this same chip for as long as they can so i'm certain we will see a consumer grade FX in the not so distant future.
  12. I would suspect it depends on what the projected lifecycle is of the sensor? E.g. at some point, Sony (they make it, don't they?) will stop manufacturing it in favor of other FX sensors.

    I would love to see eventual complaints like "why are they putting THAT old chip in a consumer FX camera?" I may be in the minority, but I would like an FX camera primarily for high ISO shooting. Eventually Sony/Nikon will pack a ton of pixels into a full-frame sensors and we likely won't get the same high-ISO results as the current sensor does.

    Others need/would like an FX camera with a significantly higher pixel density for landscapes, and their fantastic FX wide-angle lenses. My guess is that's where the pro FX cameras will go, and differentiate themselves from "consumer" FX cameas.
  13. Leif


    Feb 12, 2006
    What do you think it costs to make an FX sensor? I have heard $50-100 for a DX typical sensor. I reckon the cost scale by ~10, so we are talking $500-1000 per FX sensor. That would be consistent with the Canon 5D, which in most respects is a consumer grade FX camera i.e. slow AF, slow FPS, good but not durable body.

    So no, we won't see a cheap consumer grade FX camera for a while, but we might see a Canon 5D priced FX camera. Or even a D300 priced one, but without the pro features.

    There are many rumours about the next Sony FX camera, but whether or not Sony will allow Nikon to use that sensor, who knows. Only those in the know know, and they ain't saying.
  14. TonyBeach

    TonyBeach Guest

    Given the past relationship, the answer would be a resounding yes. These companies aren't about to go to war with one another. Sony uses Nikon's steppers to manufacture those sensors (different division of Nikon from imaging, but this is a cooperative relationship), Sony piggybacks on Nikon's sensor R&D, and Nikon is Sony's biggest purchaser of DSLR sensors (in fact, Nikon uses more of them then Sony does) and that offsets amortization of manufacturing costs considerably. If anything, the question would be does Nikon want to use Sony's next sensor? After all, Nikon can get sensors from various sources besides Sony and Nikon could design them without any help from Sony.
  15. Leif


    Feb 12, 2006
    I'm not so convinced. Sony probably needed Nikon input to help them get a good start in sensor production. And Sony had chip fabrication skills. But Sony might decide that an FX sensor would he a huge competitive advantage, boosting sales of Sony cameras and lenses, and that the cost of sharing would be too high. It would effectively turn the Sony FX camera into a damp squib as you could always get the same sensor in a Nikon camera with a bigger range of lenses, and a bigger network of dealers. After all, why would someone buy Sony?

    And there is as far as I know no history of other companies sharing sensors.

    But you might be right. Profit from selling sensors might be high. We will see.
  16. TonyBeach

    TonyBeach Guest

    Well, as I already wrote, only manufacturing sensors for your own use raises the amortization costs. Would the Sony sensor division (that's right, that is also a different division of Sony than its imaging division) forego its largest customer to advantage a smaller customer, even if that smaller customer is another division of the same company?

    Actually, Sony can't even claim the same sensor; Nikon improves Sony's sensors and Sony gets those Nikon developed improvements eventually in their own sensors and would be cutting themselves off from eventually piggybacking on that by severing the relationship.

    Also, what would stop Nikon from going elsewhere to buy sensors? There are several places Nikon could go, so Sony gains nothing not selling the sensors to Nikon and clearly loses a lot.

    As for the network of dealers, well Sony has huge marketing resources and could put their cameras in every large retail outlet in the world (I'm sure Nikon couldn't match that). Sony has tremendously deep pockets. Sony has hurt themselves coming out of the gate because they tried to strongarm retailers and because they still don't have very many camera models.

    Sony sells lots of sensors to several rival camera companies, I believe they even sell some tiny ones to Canon. Lots of companies sell sensors, that's why Sony needs Nikon more than vice versa.
  17. I've thought of upgrading my D70 to the D300, but would be willing to spend a bit more on the next FX camera in the D3->D700->D??? progression. I wonder how many other people's plans are on hold now due to the inevitability of the D???. It wasn't long ago that it was debated whether Nikon would ever even come out with a full frame digital.
  18. Triggaaar


    Jun 15, 2008
    No way does it cost that much to produce an FX sensor. It wouldn't cost 10 times as much to produce something only twice the size, with no more pixels.
  19. TonyBeach

    TonyBeach Guest

    Actually, it does. Defects wipe out a larger percentage of the sensors coming from a wafer when those sensors are larger -- so one defect might cost you 1 in 9 DX sensors while it will cost you 1 in 4 FX sensors, that and the already reduced yields increases costs exponentially rather than linearly.
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