Wednesday, November 27, 2013
Wednesday, November 20, 2013
"The alliance between Nikon and Disney allows us to connect with millions of passionate Disney guests who want to tell their stories through the capture of amazing imagery," said Nobuyoshi Gokyu, president, Nikon Inc. in a prepared media statement. "Through this agreement, Nikon will play an integral role in helping Disney guests to preserve and share every unforgettable moment."
As the "Official Camera of Walt Disney World and Disneyland Resorts," Nikon will have branded Picture Spots throughout the domestic Disney theme parks. These spots will offer recommended spots from which to take photographs.
Nikon will also be integrated with Disney PhotoPass Service, whose photographers will use Nikon cameras and accessories exclusively. Disney Fine Arts Photographers working with Disney's Fairy Tale Weddings and Honeymoons and Adventure Guides with Adventures by Disney also will use Nikon cameras.
"Our Disney Parks are among some of the most photographed locations in the world, so it is only natural for us to further develop our relationship with Nikon, who shares our commitment to capturing magical moments and making memories," said Meg Crofton, president of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Operations, US and France.
Nikon isn't the first photography-related company to be associated with the Disney Parks. Eastman Kodak had been the official film and camera partner for Disneyland since 1955, also working with Walt Disney World Resort. As part of that agreement the Disney parks featured Kodak Picture Spots, presumably in the same or similar locales as those that will soon sport the Nikon brand. Eastman Kodak ended its agreement with the Disney Parks at the end of 2012, after having declared bankruptcy in January of that year.Kungaloosh! Put on your set of ears and join me in stalking the Mouse. Read more of my Disney Travel Examiner articles or sign up for a free subscription.
Sunday, November 17, 2013
What is the Nikon P7800?
Nikon's advanced compact offering has long taken the form of the Coolpix 'P' series, with the four-digit range sitting at the top and looking to offer a suitable companion to it's DSLR range for those wanting at times to travel light. The Nikon P7800 is the latest model that looks to build on the success of the previous models in the series with a range of new features and take on the Canon G16.
But, with the growth of the advanced compact market, as well as the drop in price of competing CSCs, the question is does the P7800 remain a relevant shooting proposition, or has technological advancement rendered it obsolete?
SEE ALSO: 10 best cameras you can buy
Nikon P7800: Features
One of the core features that has made the high-end P series a success in previous generations is the fact that it features a larger sensor than is normally found in a compact, and the P7800 retains this selling point.
The P7800 retains the same 12.2MP BSI CMOS sensor as seen in the P7700, which measures in at 1/1.7-inches, as opposed to the smaller 1/2.3-inch sensor. The P7800's BSI sensor should handle noise better then the equivalent sensor technology, although it only has a native ISO 80-1600 - extendible to ISO 3200 and 6400.
Another feature maintained from the previous generation model is the 3-inch, 921k-dot LCD screen which, thanks to a side-mounted hinge, can be rotated around a 270 degree axis for viewing at a variety of angles.SEE ALSO: 10 best DSLR cameras you can buy
The Nikon P7800 also retains the same 7.1x optical zoom as seen on the model's predecessor, covering an equivalent focal range of 28-200mm and offering an impressive maximum aperture between f/2 and f/4.
One of the standout new additions to the Nikon P7800 is sure to be popular amongst some enthusiast photographers. It now features a relatively substantial electronic viewfinder that measures in at 0.5-inches, has a resolution of 921k-dots and also features a dioptre adjustment.
Another notable feature is the Nikon video capture functionality that's better than some competing models. The P7800 captures full HD video at 1920 x 1080 and at 30fps, while advanced functionality such as wind noise reduction, in-built ND filter and manual exposure control also feature.
While there's no doubting the P7800's positioning as an advanced compact - as shown through the inclusion of PASM shooting modes - it also caters for those that might want to let the camera do the work.
It does so through the presence of an auto shooting mode, a range of scene modes and a host of creative 'Effects' such as 'Cross Process' and 'Zoom Exposure'.
One feature which is sorely missed, owing to the fact that it's now commonplace on competing cameras, is Wi-Fi functionality. Both Wi-Fi and GPS tagging are available with the P7800 although only through the purchase of optional accessories.
Wednesday, November 6, 2013
Nikon Nikon D5300 Buy Cheap at a glance:
- 24.2-million-pixel, APS-C-sized CMOS sensor
- 1.037-million-dot, 3.2in, 170° LCD screen
- Expeed 4 image processor
- 39-point AF system with nine cross-type sensors
- ISO 100-25,600
- Price £730 body only
Nikon D5300 - Introduction
While the serious enthusiast is unlikely to be swayed into buying a Nikon DSLR over a Canon model purely because the Nikon camera is newer, the reality is that at the non-premium end of the market this is how some people make their buying decisions. 'Newer' must mean 'better'.
This demand for the 'new' explains why we see such short product cycles in the camera market, and why manufacturers feel the need to introduce even small advances in technology or feature sets in cameras with completely new names - rather than a 'Mark II' type of naming format.
Those familiar with Nikon's range of DSLRs may not see the sense in the company's introduction of the new D5300, especially as Nikon will maintain the D5200 alongside this model in the range - new and old together. By doing so, though, Nikon expands the number of cameras it has on offer and the number of price points it can cover, while also being able to have a model that can carry a 'New' sticker, and which introduces new features to the price band in which it will sit.
That's not to say that the Nikon D5300 isn't different to the D5200, though, as a new processor, new body design and the integration of wireless communications do genuinely bring additional benefits to the photographer.
Nikon D5300 - Design and handling
Nikon is very pleased that it has achieved a new way of constructing camera bodies, which it describes as a 'monocoque'. Instead of there being a chassis, onto which the components and the body shell are attached, the D5300 is designed to have everything screwed to the insides of the body form itself: exoskeleton, rather then the usual endoskeleton.Image: The top of the camera houses only a few control points, keeping the layout simple and unintimidating for newcomers. A stereo microphone lives in front of the hotshoe
The D5300's body shell is also made of a new material, although Nikon won't say what that new material is - just that it is new. The upshot is that the body is less heavy than it might have been, and is 25g lighter, including the battery, than the camera it doesn't replace, the D5200.
I'm not entirely sure that when I used the camera I could appreciate the exact weight loss that has occurred, but I was able to enjoy the fact that this is truly a lightweight DSLR, of the type that we might not mind carrying all day, over the shoulder, in a bag or in a large pocket. The body is very small too, although it is balanced with a reassuringly large grip for the right hand. It seems ironic that a small and light camera should need a large grip, but I found it allowed me to be aware I was carrying the camera, and should a larger lens be attached it will help to support the forward pull of such a weight distribution.Image: The body styling will be familiar to those used to the Nikon 5000 series, as will the standard menu. The 3.2in flip-out screen has impressive visibility
The buttons are arranged much as one might expect, with all the principal controls falling easily to the finger or thumb. The rear 3.2in LCD is very nicely bright and clear, with its 1.037-million-dot resolution. Nikon has set the viewing panel into the glass screen, so there are no gaps or internal reflections, which produces good contrast and a clear view from a quoted angled of up to 170°. I am impressed.
In live view, the screen works well when the camera is held low or high, and I found the AF quick enough and seemingly accurate. The response of the shutter in live view also seems good.Image: Nikon has retained its choice of layouts for the rear-screen display, with text-based and graphically expressed options to suit personal preferences
Nikon D5300 - Still to test
The principal changes in this model are of the sort that will only be proved in testing, but at this stage their potential is worth pointing out. Using the higher-capacity Expeed 4 processor, Nikon claims it has been able to reduce noise in its images through the use of more complicated calculations. A related benefit is that now noise levels are lower the company is comfortable offering a higher ISO setting - the Nikon D5300 allows ratings of up to ISO 25,600. More complex calculations also provide the potential for better white balance assessment in automatic modes via a more comprehensive assessment of the scene, and a better rendition of colour overall.
Lower noise should also lead to better resolution of detail from the 24.2-million-pixel sensor, as should Nikon's decision to do without the micro-blurring effects of a low-pass (anti-aliasing) filter. Leaving the low-pass filter off the sensor has become very fashionable, and I suspect it will be a great draw for many photographers. Moiré in images created by a sensor with 24 million pixels, even an APS-C-sized sensor, is still something that is quite likely to occur, but there is also plenty of software to correct it after the event.
The other thing to note is that this model sees the introduction of a new battery cell, which Nikon says increases capacity from 500 shots to 600 compared to the cell used in the D5200. It annoys me when companies change their battery forms, but on this occasion the new cell and that used in the D5200 are interchangeable.
Obviously, I couldn't test the battery life of the camera, but we should take the increase as good news. I will also have to wait to test the Wi-Fi and GPS capabilities of this new model, but neither can be held as negative points just for their inclusion. The Wi-Fi integration means users will be able to control the camera from an Android or iOS device, and will be able to wirelessly transfer images for viewing, editing and sending while on the go.Image: The new battery, which is backwards compatible with the D5200, offers a longer life. There is no low-pass filter on the sensor, for extra resolution
Nikon D5300 - Conclusion
It would be easy to dismiss the Nikon D5300 for being too similar to the D5200, but that really isn't the point. There is not much wrong with the D5200, and the changes that this new model brings can only make it better. Perhaps Nikon could have called it the D5200 ll, but I'm not sure it matters one bit.
The Nikon D5300 will cost around £730 body only and be available from 14 November.