Nikon D3

Released August, 2007
  • 12.1 MP
  • Full frame 36 x 24 mm CMOS
  • 3" LCD
Adjustment options have been expanded providing a much wider latitude for sharpening, contrast and saturation as well as the new brightness adjustment.
by DPReview (Apr, 2008)
9.8 Out of 10

Camera Rocket Review Our evaluation of the Nikon D3

Image Quality

RAW image quality independent of lens

Nikon D3
10.0
Nikon D700
10.0
Nikon D3S
10.0
DxOMark Low light, DxOMark Color depth and DxOMark Dynamic range

Focusing

How fast and easily does the camera nail focus

Nikon D3
9.2
Nikon D3S
9.2
focus points

Responsiveness

How much delay is there between you and your photo?

Nikon D3
10.0
Nikon D700
10.0
Nikon D3S
10.0
continuous shooting

Reviews

What do the experts think?

Nikon D3
9.8
Nikon D3S
9.5
Reviews from nikonrumors.com, techradar.com, dpreview.com and reviews.cnet.com

9.8

Camera Rocket Score

Image Quality, Focusing, Responsiveness and Reviews

Nikon D3
9.8
Nikon D3S
9.7

Benchmarks Real world tests of the Nikon D3

Low light image quality Highest ISO setting that still achieves great image quality

Nikon D3
2,290 ISO
Nikon D2Xs
489 ISO
Nikon D3S
3,253 ISO

Focus lag Delay between fully pressing shutter to image capture

Nikon D3
88 ms
Nikon D610
260 ms
Nikon D4
208 ms

Shutter lag Delay to take a photo when prefocused

Nikon D3
43 ms
Nikon D750
54 ms
Nikon D610
54 ms

Startup delay Delay from power on to first photo

Nikon D3
300 ms
Fujifilm X-T1
1,000 ms
Nikon D3S
120 ms

Continuous shooting Delay between fully pressing shutter to image capture

Nikon D3
9 fps
Nikon D700
5 fps
Nikon D2Xs
5 fps

Battery life How many photos per battery charge (CIPA)

Nikon D3
4,300 photos
Fujifilm X-T1
350 photos
Nikon D610
900 photos

Photo Gallery Wallpaper quality closeups of the camera

Reviews Word on the street for the Nikon D3


9.3
That makes sense on some level, though, since the 1D Mark III and the D3 are really all-around cameras that combine the burst speed to handle the demands of sports shooters with ruggedness and image quality that should appeal to news photographers and many others.

10.0
For that, you can get a D3 body, one of the brand-new Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 N-series lenses and Nikon's fabulous 14-24mm N-series wide-angle zoom.

Overall

9.5 Out of 10

What People Are Saying Give it to me straight

Sensor

The focusing screen also features automatic masking if you attach a DX format lens, a portion of the view is grayed out indicating the active sensor area.
by DPReview (Apr, 2008)
Noise remains well under control through ISO 1,600, and begins to creep up a bit at ISO 3,200 and ISO 6,400.
by c|net (Jul, 2008)
The Canon EOS-1Ds Mark III is the undisputed king of resolution with its 21.1 MP CMOS sensor (and price tag to match), whilst the EOS 5D is a compact, relatively affordable model (at today's prices it's about half the price of a D3) that is aimed more at the serious enthusiast than the jobbing professional (although that doesn't stop them using them).
by DPReview (Apr, 2008)

Lens

There are plenty of options to customize the controls to your needs, and you can even change the direction of the two main wheels that are used to change shutter speed and aperture, as well as the direction of the exposure compensation EV display.
by c|net (Jul, 2008)
The D3 features a new 51 point auto focus sensor, the center fifteen (3x5 grid) being cross point sensors even with F5.6 aperture lenses.
by DPReview (Apr, 2008)
Below on the left you can see the D3's lens mount with the mirror down, on the right with mirror up and shutter open (exposing the sensor).
by DPReview (Apr, 2008)

Iso

The good news is that the Normal setting offers a good balance between the desire to keep visible noise to a minimum without sacrificing fine detail, and the four settings provide a good range of options from very low to high enough to keep noise at bay right up into the highest reaches of the ISO range.
by DPReview (Apr, 2008)
But at higher ISOs, the D3 has a very clear advantage.
by TechRadar (Jan, 2008)
At ISO 1600 and over the D3 really starts to shine, leaving the competition behind and producing perfectly usable results at ISO 6400.
by DPReview (Apr, 2008)

Focus

Nikon has made it clear that they are not using etching to indicate the AF points but that all information is displayed using liquid crystal, hence when an AF point is not active there is no detrimental effect on the focusing screen.
by DPReview (Apr, 2008)
With the new firmware introduced earlier this week there is a new option to change the brightness of the illuminated AF points.
by DPReview (Apr, 2008)
On the rear of the camera we see the now isolated AF-ON button (the A-EL/AF-L button now slightly smaller and moved further down the body closer to the multi-selector).
by DPReview (Apr, 2008)

Image quality

We were continually impressed by the almost 'film like' grain exhibited by high ISO D3 files (as opposed to heavy digital noise reduction).
by DPReview (Apr, 2008)
At lower ISO settings the image quality isn't significantly different to most other 12 megapixel models, though Nikon's fairly conservative approach to image processing - not too much sharpening, not too much saturation, not too much contrast - means that JPEGs are a little flatter 'out of camera' than most.
by DPReview (Apr, 2008)
Color accuracy is among the best we've seen in a digital camera, and overall image quality is wonderful, partly attributable to the D3's 14-bit analog-to-digital conversion which feeds into a 16-bit internal processing pipeline.
by c|net (Jul, 2008)

Specifications Full list of technical specs

sensor

Type CMOS
Megapixels 12.1 MP
Resolution 4256 x 2832
Size Full frame
Area 36 x 24 mm
Crop factor 1.0x
Pixel size 71.7 microns
Light sensitivity 200 ISO to 6,400 ISO
Light sensitivity (Boost) 6,400 ISO to 25,600 ISO
Codecs
  1. NEF 14bit
  2. NEF 12bit
  3. JPEG
Self cleaning sensor No

focus system

Type Phase detection
Focus points 51
Cross type focus points 15
Supports continuous No

viewfinder

Viewfinder mirror Opaque
Viewfinder Viewfinder
Type Pentaprism
Coverage 100%
Magnification 0.7x
Viewfinder size 0.7x

performance

Max continuous shooting 9 fps
Battery life 4,300 photos
Continuous shooting 9 fps, JPEG
Focus lag 88 ms
Shutter lag 43 ms
Startup delay 300 ms

video

Video None

display

Type LCD
Size 3"
Resolution 922 k dots
Has a touch screen No
Has a flip out screen No
Supports live view Yes

shutter

Min 30 s
Max 1/8000 s

form factor

Size 160 x 157 x 88 mm
Thickness 88 mm
Weight 1,300 g
Is weather sealed Yes

features

Is a smart camera No
Includes a GPS No
Supports HDR No
Automatic panorama No
Create realistic 3D images No
Image stabilization None
Report a correction

Comments

comments powered by Disqus