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43666 11/28/2009
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  • 6.1-megapixel DX format CCD, 3,008 x 2,000 pixel images
  • ISO from 200 to 1,600 ("ISO Boost" to 3,200)
  • 2.5fps for up to 100 JPEGs; 0.18s power-up
  • Selectable 3-area AF
  • 2.5-inch LCD with 170-degree viewing angle
  • In-camera image editing and effects
  • SD memory card, SDHC compliant
  • Nikon's smallest, lightest and most affordable DSLR yet

The Nikon D40 retains the six megapixel image sensor used in the D50, housed in a body that sets an impressive benchmark among its Nikon DSLR siblings in terms of miniaturization. Body size and weight is similar to Canon's EOS Digital Rebel XTi or Pentax's K100D, despite the fact that many features in the higher-res (and higher-priced) D80 model have made their way into the D40. A couple of changes are unique to the D40, however. Most significantly, the Nikon D40 doesn't include a focus motor in the camera body, saving some cost / weight / size while dropping compatibility for some older lenses. Instead the D40 relies on the fact that recent Nikkor lenses have tended to integrate a motor already. Photographers with a large stock of Nikon glass are unlikely to be considering an entry-level camera anyway, and new SLR users will be unlikely to notice the subtraction of some backwards compatibility. The D40's AF system spec is also reduced somewhat as compared to the camera's top-shelf siblings, with just three AF points (as compared to in the D50, and 11 in the D80).

Other features of the Nikon D40 include a 2.5" LCD display with 230,000 pixels, a new help system accessible via a dedicated "i" button on the camera body, Nikon's iTTL flash metering, and 2.5 frames-per-second burst shooting capability. The D40 also offers RAW / JPEG / RAW+JPEG file formats, shutter speeds from 30 to 1/4000 second, flash sync at 1/500 second, ISO sensitivity from 200 - 1600 with a 3200 boost, and metering courtesy of a 420-segment matrix sensor.

The Nikon D40 will ship from December, priced at US$599 with an 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 II kit lens. (Nikon tells us that the camera will only be offered as a kit, the body and lens will not be available separately.)

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Keywords: Nikon SLR SD APS-C 6MP


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