Nikon D4 review

This DSLR may be big, but boy is it fast

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Nikon has succeeded in building upon the D3s to produce a versatile camera that is suitable for use by professional photographers in a wide range of situations.

The Nikon D4 may not have the highest resolution, but it has lightening-quick responses, a fantastically high maximum shooting rate and is capable of capturing an impressive amount of detail across a huge sensitivity range.

The Nikon D4 is the first of the recently announced high-end cameras to go through our testing procedure, and consequently we are so far unable to compare it with its main rival, the Canon EOS-1DX. However, we will do this as soon as we get our hands on a 1DX.

We liked

A great AF system, good noise control and huge sensitivity range are contained in an ergonomically arranged body

We disliked

Slight movement in the memory card bay is a little disconcerting. The AF system is complex, and its various options could be made clearer in the menu for the uninitiated. There may be 51 AF points, but they are all clustered around the centre of the frame and within the DX crop.

Final verdict

The design changes made since the D3s make a significant and positive impact on the handling of the Nikon D4.

Those upgrading may find it takes a while to get used to using the mini-joystick controllers to set the AF point, but they make it quicker and easier in the long run - especially when shooting in portrait format.

Nikon has produced a solid workhorse of a DSLR that professionals can depend upon to deliver good results even in low lighting conditions. Image quality is high and results look great straight from the camera.

Tech Specs

Product TypeDigital SLR Camera Body Only
Battery Size SupportedProprietary Battery Size
Green CompliantYes
Maximum Video Resolution1920 x 1080
Effective Camera Resolution16.2 Megapixel
HD Movie ModeYes
Memory Card SupportedCompactFlash (CF) Card, XQD Card
Digital ZoomNo
Brand NameNikon
FeaturesLive View, Self-timer, Continuous Shooting Mode
Screen Size8.1 cm (3.2")
Video FormatsMOV, MPEG-4
Viewfinder TypeSLR
Weight (Approximate)1.18 kg
Green Compliance Certificate/AuthorityRoHS, WEEE
Image Sensor Size36 mm x 23.90 mm
Maximum Image Resolution4928 x 3280
Display Screen TypeLCD
Height156.5 mm
Width160 mm
Depth90.5 mm
Image FormatsJPEG, RAW
Focus ModesAuto, Manual
ManufacturerNikon Corporation
Product ModelD4
Product NameD4 Digital SLR Camera
Exposure Control
  • Programmed Auto with Flexible Program (P)
  • Shutter-Priority Auto (S)
  • Aperture-Priority Auto (A)
  • Manual (M)
Aspect Ratio16:9
Manufacturer Part NumberVBA320AE
Manufacturer Website Address
Marketing Information

Limits are there to be pushed. And this SLR is made to push them.

The D4 offers a powerful combination of up to 11 fps, a 16.2 megapixel FX-format sensor and phenomenally high ISO (extendable up to 204,800, equivalent). D-movie delivers all the flexibility you need for broadcast quality video. The Kevlar/carbon fiber-composite shutter unit boasts a standard life cycle rating of 400,000 releases, thirty percent more than its predecessor.

Ready for anything, the D4 has the durability and the versatility to realize every shooting opportunity out there.

Package Contents
  • D4 Digital SLR Camera
  • Rechargeable Li-ion Battery EN-EL18
  • Battery Charger MH-26
  • USB Cable UC-E15
  • USB Cable Clip
  • Camera Strap AN-DC7
  • Body Cap BF-1B
  • Accessory Shoe Cover BS-2
  • Mic Stereo Input Jack for Stereo Microphone ME-1 UF-2
Limited Warranty1 Year