Tag Archives: digital camera

Nikon D4 Virtual Horizon in the Viewfinder

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I took delivery of a new Nikon D4 yesterday. Wow! It’s an awesome camera. Right now, I’m still learning about it, so I’ll have a more detailed hands-on review soon. Until then, I thought I’d share one of those “hidden” features that is an improvement from the Nikon D3s: the viewfinder implementation of virtual horizon.

The virtual horizon was a new feature in the Nikon D3, and it works really well on a tripod with the rear LCD. However, you can use the VH in the viewfinder, too. On the D3, the metering scale was co-opted to show a level indicator, but it was kind of tricky to use in practice. The biggest drawback of the viewfinder VH was that you had to take your eye off the scene while using it.

Enter the Nikon D4, which now uses the AF points in the viewfinder to accomplish the same function. When you engage the VH in the viewfinder, you’ll see some dots appear along with the center AF point. As the camera is tilted, the AF points start lighting up in the opposite direction of the tilt. So, if the camera is tilted to the right, the squares light up on the left side of the viewfinder. This tells me to tilt the camera back to the left to level it. The more the camera is tilted, the more squares light up. Cool!

This is just one of many “nice touches” that the D4 has that make it Nikon’s new flagship DSLR body.

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A thousand points of light? No, that’s just my built-in projector!

Chalk this one up to the unexpected.  Nikon today announced an update to the Coolpix line, offering three new models.  I don’t usually get excited by any of the Nikon Coolpix announcements, because they still miss the mark when it comes to offering something that a pro photographer might consider when traveling on vacation.  But Nikon does seem to be getting creative with their gimmicks, features.

The Coolpix S1000pj is the first digital camera to offer a built in projector.  Yep, you heard me right– even I had to read that one twice and make sure it wasn’t lack of caffeine driving me to see funny things in the press release.  A projector.  In a camera.  Packing a not so mighty 10 lumens, you won’t be using this to light up an auditorium for your next photo exposition.  But it is interesting!
The Coolpix S1000pj also includes “hybrid VR”– a combination of lens and sensor shift to maximize image stabilization, a 28-140mm equivalent lens, and packs 12 megapixels.
So, if you are a multimedia freak and enjoy slide shows on the go, here’s your Coolpix!
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