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Nikon D40x – Brief Review
By Kalin Staikov
To begin let’s take a moment to check out some key features of this amazing camera. Don’t worry – I won’t bore you to death with all that stuff but still – the 10 megapixel DX CCD is the first thing that comes in sight when checking out the huge specification table of D40x.
Another thing that comes new perhaps will be the pretty expanded viewfinder with a magnification of x0.8 and some nice 95% view of the image you are trying to take picture of. That’s nice really but it’s just the beginning.
Basically there is some kind of a guru rule that says that every photo camera review need to say about the resolution of the image you can take with the photo camera so here it is – maximum resolution of 3872x2592 when taking pictures in 10 megapixels mode. Yes, it was not that hard - but the question is – is this resolution really that important? Sure – it is but check out what comes next.
The quality of the image you shoot can go high in the sky to a RAW data image with 12-bit compression or maybe some nice JPEG compression if you prefer. Don’t worry – you have the ability to use some huge SD cards when you need more memory for the RAW data. The RGB settings are pretty adjustable too – you can even set them to Adobe RGB which will surely add for you some nice support when after editing the image.
The lens mount will bring a smile on your face when you see that it has these nice AF (auto-focus) contacts. And let’s face it – even the most experienced photographer will need them sooner or later.
AF-S and AF-I lens are fully supported. That means that everything will be up and running for you when you are using them - starting with the AF, 3D Color Matrix Metering II and other things like that cool exposure meter for example. With other lens like Micro-Nikkor things may not be as pretty as with the AF-S and AF-I lens but still some nice support will be available to you. However IX Nikkor is not supported.
Now prepare yourself for some diving as we move on to the auto-focus. Let’s start with that three area TTL phase detection and see what it is all about. Phase detection is a feature of the auto-focus and it simply compares images. These images are in fact two coming from the opposite sides of the camera and then a range finder is created in the AF sensor. This is done in order for the distance to the objects to be measured. The new thing here however is the two-dimensional intensity patterns. In D40x there is pair of sensors orientated in 90◦. This helps for the 2D measuring and catching
where the objects really are in the distance and focusing the lens properly. Sometimes if the light is not enough an infrared light is used in order for some additional passive data to be collected that will help your AF sensor focus your lens better. You will see that you have a white light assistant here too. Bottom line here will be that – yes, you don’t need to know about all that stuff in such details but try not to cover the infrared light/white light emitter with your fingers as you shoot.
Next AF mode is about area focusing and is called with the pretty complicated name Multi-CAM530. This together with the range detection is pretty much all about the AF of this photo camera but take in account that it is not about the AF specification but it is you. These AF capabilities are there to be used wilily. Don’t think that because they are AF modes they are not important – quite the opposite – use them properly and they will pretty much bring new dimensions to your work.
AF comes with white light assistance and this is another pretty interesting topic to be discussed. There is also an ability for one of three areas to be selected for you and one nice capability is also there – you don’t need to keep the shutter button half-way pressed if you need to focus all the time – just use the AE-L/AF-L locking mode to insure constant focusing.
With its 420 segment RGB sensor the spot and center-weighted metering are not pretty much all about the metering capabilities of this photo camera. There is also a 3D color matrix metering II which I told you about earlier in this article. To let you know something more about it I will tell you that there is a database in this metering mode that provide you with data about scenes that are difficult to be metered. Your photo camera will use that data in this mode to help you focus and stabilize the image better.
For the white balance there are not many new things to be said. There is a mode in which you will be able to pick a preset of the white balance of a photo but this will surely not be something new to you. However you will absolutely enjoy the fine tuning if the WB as it will be of much help to you.
The shutter speed is 30 seconds to 1/4000 second. Nothing too fancy but I think that it will cover all your needs.
The ISO sensitivity in this photo camera goes pretty high up to 3200. I think that I don’t need to tell you more about it and all the stuff coming with it because you will find another article in my blog that will pretty much cover the idea for you.
For reviews and other photography stuff check out advanced-photography.blogspot.com.
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