Nikon Announce the D850 – Another DSLR That Does “Movie Stuff”

August 24th, 2017
Nikon Announce the D850 - Another DSLR That Does "Movie Stuff"

Photographers have been anticipating the  Nikon D850 for a while. It’s the Japanese company’s next-generation full-frame DSLR that, according to its specs, will surely make photographers happy. Of course, nowadays no DSLR comes without a dedicated “movie mode” and Nikon promotes this quite self-confidently. But will the camera hold the promise of being a strong video shooting device? Let’s take a look.

Nikon D850

First off, let’s not forget that Nikon’s cameras are very popular among photographers and even among video shooters. The Nikon D800/D810 (predecessor to the new D850) was once one of the best options and delivered solid HD video files. Also, just looking at the specs of the D850, it seems like Nikon will not disappoint the brand’s fans.

Nikon D850 Photo Specs

Here are just some of its photo specs:

  • 45.7-megapixel backside-illuminated CMOS sensor (very high resolution)
  • No anti-aliasing filter
  • Shoots 7 frames per second (9 frames with optional battery grip)
  • Silent Shooting Mode
  • 153-point AF system from Nikon D5
  • Built-in Wi-Fi and Bluetooth
  • Affordable, considering it’s a pro camera (A little over $3,000)

Get all the details in the full press release.

Nikon D850 Video Specs

And here’s the more interesting part for the readers of this website:

  • Nikon’s first camera to offer full-frame 4K video
  • Shoots 4K UHD at up to 30fps
  • Up to 120fps in Full HD
  • 8K Timelapse function (stores 8K images in a video sequence)

Nikon D850 - back

For those photographers who record video during their photo shoots, full-frame 4K is certainly great news. For video shooters the specs seem up to speed with what we’ve seen delivered by other brands during the last two years, so there’s not much that is truly tempting, unless you have your mind set on the Nikon ecosystem.

There is no mention of data-rate or the existence of a flat profile, let alone a dedicated Log Gamma. From the looks of it – and just like the latest Canon DSLRs – it seems like Nikon is not interested to capture the filmmaker’s imagination with this camera. Unfortunately, the following promotional video further supports the notion that “movie mode” has been primarily added to give photographers an option to record some video too:

It would not be fair to judge any camera just by its specs and rather unconvincing promotional films. Besides, the promotional aspect has never been Nikon’s forte, but many people swear on the equipment they produce and rightfully so. Add to that that Nikon has surprised filmmakers with cameras like the D800/D810 before. So, in order to truly evaluate the video capabilities of the camera, let’s wait until we have tried and tested it ourselves.

The Nikon D850 is available for pre-order now and expected to ship in September.

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Gergö NyiröRyan HaggertyPeter KentAk NsGerrit Driessen Recent comment authors
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Josh Skol
Josh Skol
GuestAugust 24th, 2017

I know i wants this beast so bad.

sam broggs
sam broggs
MemberAugust 24th, 2017

Underwhelming

 Jason Pischke
Jason Pischke
MemberAugust 24th, 2017

Please elaborate, I can honestly say I am presently surprised at how good the specs are for this camera.

Marco Abraham
Marco Abraham
GuestAugust 24th, 2017

I like how pretentious this page looks when putting “movie stuff”. This is actually a good camera with a great price tag, Canon would charge double that for these specs and if you’re saying this because it is not a dedicated cinema camera then why are you showcasing it? Maybe just don’t review it and that’s it end of story. Kudos to Nikon for this specs

Roberto Mettifogo
Roberto Mettifogo
MemberAugust 24th, 2017

If that is cinematic I am Emmanuel Lubezki. Nice still camera !

 Bernard Shaw
Bernard Shaw
MemberAugust 25th, 2017

It actually would be great to have a cinema camera a true one that is also a great photography camera.

I would buy one. This is not one. But there might be a market for one

Christopher R Field
Christopher R Field
GuestAugust 25th, 2017

Yeah seriously. I shoot with Canon, Sony, and Fuji. 8ve shot quite a bit with Nikon in the past, as well as Olympus and Panasonic, I love all theses camera systems for what they can do, but that camera is a pretty big blow to Canon when following up after the 6Dmk2 disappointment.
Maybe some props are due at this point.

Gerrit Driessen
Gerrit Driessen
GuestAugust 25th, 2017

Where are the bitrate specs? Does it have a log profile? Which format does it shoot? It’s not all about resolution people…

Gabriel de Castelaze
Gabriel de Castelaze
GuestAugust 25th, 2017

Asking the real questions here

Ak Ns
Ak Ns
GuestAugust 25th, 2017

Actually there is nothing here for video

Gerrit Driessen
Gerrit Driessen
GuestAugust 25th, 2017

Not worth buying for starting videographers

Ak Ns
Ak Ns
GuestAugust 25th, 2017

For VDSLR nikon was never an option.

Peter Kent
Peter Kent
MemberAugust 25th, 2017

No peaking during 4k, no Log, no 10bit, no OSPDAF, no IBIS and pixel binned sampling.

This maybe the best Nikon and one of the best DSLRs but I still find it quite lacking in what I now consider basic video features.

Hopefully some of these can be addressed in software or has other workarounds. It would be ok that it lacks peaking if it has a sharp punch in during recording, if they have a picture profile that gives 10-12 stops without banding then log won’t be missed, if they have a fast and accurate CDAF that could make up for most situations also I hope they have a “Super35″/APS-C 4k video mode that uses an oversampled source like the Sonys.

Ryan Haggerty
Ryan Haggerty
MemberAugust 26th, 2017

dpreview has released more video specs including 4:2:2 8-bit over HDMI, Flat profile, and up to 144 mbs bitrate. Rolling shutter is rough and of course AF for video is still contrast detect. Not sure about recording time limit.

This is not a video centric camera, but it could be a solid option for shooting video with a full frame look as you get the full sensor area in 4k and also Nikon’s color science. Like everything else, it depends on your project workflow as to whether this is a good fit for you.

 Gergö Nyirö
Gergö Nyirö
MemberAugust 28th, 2017

The recording limit is 29 minutes 59 seconds as usual

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