Chase Jarvis RAW: Advance Testing the Nikon D90

Woot! Today I get to be among the very first to share with you the planet’s newest camera: the much-anticipated Nikon D90. You may have been attuned to all the recent leaks, buzz and rumors of a new Nikon camera coming soon, but I can assure you, this here ain’t no rumor. It’s the real deal and I know so because my crew and I spent several weeks testing and experimenting with this gem months in advance of today’s release, and our efforts make up the launch campaign. Hold onto your chairs for a second while I drop a few nuggets:

- 12.3 megapixels (the same luscious chip that’s in the Nikon D300)
- D-movie function (that’s right, MOVIE function. 1280×720, .avi format, HD720p)
- High ISO/low-noise performance (Nikon’s ace in the hole. I shot this at 3200 and dug it.)
- 4.5 frames per second
- 3 inch, 920dot LCD with Live View
- Pop up flash with ‘commander’ mode to interface with Nikon’s lighting system
- GPS tagging

And if you’re at all curious to see actual 1000px detail shots of the camera, sample images, technical specs, and hear the backstory behind what a Nikon D3 pro like yours truly was doing with a D90 camera targeted to advanced amateurs, click ‘continue reading’ below.

Ok, so I normally steer clear of too much tech hype, but today I’m right up in there. Why? Because this time it feels different. Different, sure, because I got to play with, hammer on, and test the bejeezus out of the Nikon D90 for weeks-on-end prior to anybody even knowing it existed. (Did I say lucky? Soooo fun.) But this also feels different because, beyond all the specifications, numbers, megapixels and other geeky stuff, my gut is that Nikon have really delivered on this product. After using this camera and pushing it to it’s limits, I can honestly say that it’s a camera that will deliver stunning, emotive pictures–and MOVIES for Pete’s sake! MOVIES!–to an entire spectrum of amateur photographers. And that’s exciting. The world can always use better pictures.

The Short Backstory: Representatives from Nikon Japan buzzed me to talk about a new camera while I was in Dubai. Two zillion dollars in cell phone bills and a bunch of airline miles later, I’m learning the details. And before I know it, we’ve piggy-backed a Nikon project on top of another commercial shoot I’ve got going back in Seattle in the spring to put this hot little camera to the test. And the best part? I’ve talked them into not only putting the camera in my hands, but it the hands of my staff too. Democracy. Nikon loves the idea. Heck everybody on my staff are advanced amateurs in their own right – so what better way to test this sucker than have everybody shooting – me and the crew…cameras all ‘round.

Speaking of The Camera, how’d you like a handful of snaps of the camera to whet your palette. For an Aperture gallery of twenty 1000px jpgs of each view (even photos of the digital menus…), just click here or an image below:

The Main Event: We had a blast, gaffer taping up the logos, running in stealth mode with all these black beauties so that they wouldn’t be noticed around other crew, cast, and the general public. Secret agent fun. We worked the cameras hard during my piggy-backed commercial shoot for more than a week. We shot them constantly, me–along with the D3–and the crew just with the fleet of D90’s. And funny how this happens, but go figure…our work with the D90 on location soon bled into shooting over dinner, then drinks, and then into the night, then into the next week, and so on. And the more we beat on ‘em, the more the crew liked ‘em.

Here’s one of my favorite grabs from my time with the D90. The flare is a stylistic thing, but the image really shows a great dynamic range:


Click the image above or, better yet, visit www.chasejarvisandfriends.com for more sample images, behind the scenes shots, and access to the main D90 microsite with all the bells and whistles.

The Wrap: In addition to the myriad of reasons I’ve already listed, there’s another reason to celebrate this launch: it’s cool that Nikon are listening to pro photographers, amateurs, and engineers alike, as a part of testing and adopting new products. This D90 project so nicely whips together many of the needs of aspiring photographers, as well as the photo community at large. Nikon is getting it. And Seth Godin will be happy. I hope other photography brands follow Nikon’s lead.

To close this short chapter for me and hopefully open a new one for those of you who might consider rolling with the D90, I’ll wrap with a quick review. Here’s 5 reasons this camera is great:

1. The D-movie. HD720 video in an dSLR is really big news. It’s so cool that we’re seeing the merging of high quality still and video pictures into the same camera. Sure, for us pros, we’ve got the RED camera. But for everybody else? This is the future. People: this is an SLR that shoots killer video! It’s the merging of features that the pros are using and it’s made accessible the the amateur at a price point of $1200+ bucks. Trust me, I played with this feature at length…all of us on location did, for that matter. It’s going to be a powerful tool. You can control your own depth of field so beautifully using the manual focus ring, the audio capture is solid, the high ISO capabilities in video?! Way cool… Long lenses, fisheyes, zoom lenses…versatility. I’m a BIG fan of the D-Movie.

2. Photo J possibilities. This camera will be a great second body for pro photojournalists. Commercial guys like me will be loyal to the D3 and its future, but for any PJ shooter, all the bells and whistles we’ve discussed already– especially video and audio capture–make this a no-brainer as a backup body.

3. Image Quality. The sensor is really top tier for a camera targeted at advanced amateurs. The high ISO capabilities are going to be a welcome addition to cameras in this price point. Want to take images of your kid in the rain at his baseball game at 7pm? This is your camera. It’s the D300 sensor with some juice.

4. The ergonomics of this camera are great. As someone who holds a camera for a living, I think camera ergonomics are waaay underrated. This camera (light at only 1lb. 6oz) is a treat in your hand. The menus are great and everything is right where you want it.

5. Oh ya, did I mention that this thing shoots video?!

And lastly, since I’m a huge music fan and always inundated with emails asking about the great music in our videos, here’s the inside line: the music in this Nikon D90 video is compliments of one of my fav bands going right now: The Blakes. Do yourself
(and them) a favor and buy some iTunes music from these guys so you can say you were listening to them before they made it really big. Hurry, your time is running out.

[If you enjoyed the above video, here are a couple others you might dig:]
[Chase Jarvis RAW: Ninjas.
[Chase Jarvis FRAMES: Hasselblad Masters.]
[Chase Jarvis TECH: Packing Photography Gear.]
[Chase Jarvis TECH: Photoshoot in 180 Seconds.]

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292 Responses to Chase Jarvis RAW: Advance Testing the Nikon D90

  1. Jim Goldstein August 26, 2008 at 9:29 pm #

    Dude! I’m a Canon user, but if you keep making Nikon look this cool who knows what might happen.

  2. PhoebeT August 26, 2008 at 9:32 pm #

    OMG – this is soooo amazing! When can we buy? When, when, when? Thanks for an awesome video Chase. (your so lucky to get to do this stuff!).

    And The Blakes? They rock!

  3. Black English August 26, 2008 at 9:35 pm #

    I’m never going to settle on a camera now! As far as The Blakes, can I say I know the guy behind the guy behind the guy????

  4. Taylor Jones August 26, 2008 at 9:39 pm #

    Pretty epic. I’m liking the D Movie

  5. Carson Blume August 26, 2008 at 9:53 pm #

    Just to add to the Nikon buzz; I sold ALL my canon stuff, since i have sent in my body for repairs 3 times in the past 6 months, my flashes twice in the past 6 months, and my 70-200 twice in the past 6 months! I got a 14-24, a 24-70 a 70-200 and a 24TS and a couple of D3′s. The Latitude on the D3′s Sensor is unreal, it weights a little bit more than a 1D body, but I love the dual CF slots, and it only took a few shoots to get used to everything being backwards.

  6. Phillip Jefferson August 26, 2008 at 9:57 pm #

    Killer work getting Nikon to let you run wild with this sweet new rig! You look like you had some great times with it, thanks for continuing to kick ass.

  7. Skunkabilly August 26, 2008 at 10:03 pm #

    Hello sir,

    1. Does the pop-up Commander have any more control, speed or reliability than the D80 or D200, or about the same? The D80 was head and shoulders above the D70 but is far from perfect…but works great for us ounce-counting climber/backpacker types.

    2. Completely off topic, I will be passing through your hood…any ideas for a casual date spot in Seattle!

  8. Phillip Holland August 26, 2008 at 10:16 pm #

    Thanks for the great insider scoop!

    As a side note…I admire your work tremendously.

    Keep it up!

  9. mikelao August 26, 2008 at 10:25 pm #

    hey chase – i am a fan of your work and this might just be the nikon camera that will make me switch! thanks for the great review of the nikon d90!

  10. Carsten S August 26, 2008 at 10:30 pm #

    About time! :-)

    Did it lose any features of the D80? In particular, does it still have an AF motor?

  11. Dartanyon Race August 26, 2008 at 10:39 pm #

    Still will work with non-motor lenses.

  12. Philadelphia Wedding Photographers August 26, 2008 at 10:39 pm #

    Now the question is can you hook up an external mic to the camera and have audio control? With that I will throw away my $2500 canon video camera and switch to this.

  13. Artis August 26, 2008 at 10:45 pm #

    cool. and, great shots – full of life!

    also, it would be interesting to know if you did the testing in order to produce promotion material (sample images etc.) or you also had to reporta feedback on possible improvements to the camera – and if so, did some of that made it into the production model.

    cheers.

  14. Christopher Arata August 26, 2008 at 10:45 pm #

    Great post chase!! Coming from the Cinematography world its cool to see Nikon putting the D-movie mode onto this camera, 24fps that pretty. The fusion of Ideas is defiantly there.

    Off topic, have you had the chance to play with the RED? I think its a great camera, & I love working with it. Do you aspire to any Cinematographic level, & or do you see your self using the RED line up in the future?t

  15. Mark August 26, 2008 at 10:50 pm #

    Yipeee. I’ve got camera lust. Any idea when it comes out? How does its size compare to the D40x?

  16. Barak August 26, 2008 at 11:09 pm #

    That is so cool. I can’t wait.

    Slightly off topic:
    When I clicked through to the big pictures from the camera, it f’n resized my browser. Don’t you hate it when someone resizes you browser without asking?

  17. Mat August 26, 2008 at 11:13 pm #

    Props to you and your team Chase, not only do you produce fantastic imagery and all this ‘social network-y’ video, you also look like you’re having a load of fun doing it. Plus you guys really sell the passion of photography.

    And yeh, stop making Nikon look so awesome.

  18. ivan l August 26, 2008 at 11:20 pm #

    lookin pretty snazzy. too bad I’m stuck with canon. oh well, maybe the 50 or 60D will have the video and high iso features.

  19. Cody Hurd August 26, 2008 at 11:25 pm #

    @ Philadelphia Wedding, No external audio on this bad boy yet, I try to mic all of our client work onto an external audio source anyway so it didn’t seem to me like it was a lacking feature when we were testing.

    BTW, at least half of the “Chase Jarvis RAW: Advanced Testing The Nikon D90″ was actually shot in D-Movie mode with the D90!

  20. Sebastian August 26, 2008 at 11:35 pm #

    looks good, thanks for the test!

  21. Wayne August 26, 2008 at 11:55 pm #

    This is definitely the next camera I want! This thing is rockin’!

  22. Rob August 26, 2008 at 11:57 pm #

    What exactly is “D-Movie”?
    AVI?, MPEG2?, MOV?
    The real question is can I use the files with Final Cut and iMovie directly out of the camera?

    I was just about to drop $ on a D300 tomorrow, but am now wondering if the D90 will suffice.
    Briefly, what separates the D90 user from a D300 user?

    Thanks!

  23. Tyson August 27, 2008 at 12:00 am #

    Wish this had come out when I first started with Canon! I think I just love my 10-22 lens too much….hopefully Canon will add video as well in response.

  24. Macovei Tinel August 27, 2008 at 12:08 am #

    d-movie sounds gay. i don’t know why nikon keeeps making slrs that tend to be more like p’n's. i mean, the smallest body? d-movie? :| that just ads up to the price. whoe the hell needs d-movie? sell it for 300-400$ less.
    how about the price? an estimation?

  25. Cody H. August 27, 2008 at 12:14 am #

    @ Rob D-Movie is a 720p AVI file that you can directly import into Final Cut Pro. As a videographer for Chase, with a strong background in photography, I’m a little biased. I love motion and I love photography. The D90 for me is the catalyst that brings the two together. Sorry to sound like a commercial, but this is the camera I have been waiting forever for!

  26. Rob August 27, 2008 at 12:27 am #

    @ Cody… Thanks bro.

    One other Q…. Does the video Live View on the LCD while shooting?

  27. Adam August 27, 2008 at 12:35 am #

    Thanks for the 411 on the D90! I’m a D80 user, and have been waiting to purchase a new camera, this D90 looks right for me. Cool, nice vid Chase!

  28. Cody H. August 27, 2008 at 12:41 am #

    @ rob, Yep.

  29. Steve Newman Photography August 27, 2008 at 1:09 am #

    livin the dream – love it!

  30. Mindaugas August 27, 2008 at 1:10 am #

    Everything sounds awesome. I shall probably hurry-up selling my obsolete D200 now. Any sampe movies shot with D90?

  31. Neil August 27, 2008 at 1:54 am #

    A reasonably priced high def camera/slr hybrid… which accepts affordable interchangable lenses.

    Like a 10.5mm fisheye….

    Dang thats nice (and I shoot Canon)

    How does the video look thru a fisheye lens? I saw some folks shooting like that in the video.

  32. Anonymous August 27, 2008 at 2:08 am #

    This sounds like a spectacular upgrade from the D70 (which still works great)! I'm an advanced amateur photog who works in motion pictures.

    One huge question, Cody. How many frames can be shot in the video mode?

    1280×720 gives you a .92MB frame.
    Looking at Nikon's specs, you can fit 1800 frames of .9MB on a 2GB SD Card (what's wrong with CF?!). At 24fps, that gives you about 20 seconds per 2GB card.

    That would equate to:
    2GB – 20 seconds =
    4GB – 40 seconds =
    8GB – 80 seconds = 1min 20sec
    16GB -160 seconds = 2min 40sec
    32GB -320 seconds = 5min 20sec

    This isn't about to replace a video camera. Nonetheless, it's a f%$&ing; still cam! Pretty slick.

    Cheers,

  33. Niklas Morberg August 27, 2008 at 2:18 am #

    Anonymous: video mode is not uncompressed images, it seems like M-JPEG. You will also not be able to record more than 5 min 720p clips due to sensor overheating. A 5m clip will be around 600MB according to Rob Galbraith: http://www.robgalbraith.com/bins/multi_page.asp?cid=7-9314-9569

  34. V.DeShawn August 27, 2008 at 2:28 am #

    I am a papparazzi here in beverly hills, and my toes are curled up just thinking of all the possibilities of this camera.
    I own a D700, and loooove it to death, and now the d90??…wheeew, so emotional right now :)

    now if only, it could shot stills, and video at the same time??

  35. ruwithme August 27, 2008 at 2:33 am #

    your youtube thingo was a pain a full 2min 40sec promoting yourselves before the first useful comment!!
    “Nikon promotes Chase Jarvis” it should be named. ta.

  36. Jason Bell August 27, 2008 at 2:43 am #

    It’s great to see Nikon pushing the boundries, I can’t fault that. It has left me wondering if it’s going to be a case of the 80/20 rule. 80% of the time you use 20% of the features.

    After years on a Nikon D50 which never let me down, it stayed on manual most of the time, I upgraded to a Fuji S5 Pro which stays on manual 90% of the time.

    At the end of the day it’s business and profit and Nikon have excelled themselves on the D3, D300, D700 and now the D90, but it hasn’t swayed me :)

    Regards and blessings
    Jase

  37. Neil August 27, 2008 at 2:47 am #

    A reasonably priced high def camera/slr hybrid… which accepts affordable interchangable lenses.

    Like a 10.5mm fisheye….

    Dang thats nice (and I shoot Canon)

    How does the video look thru a fisheye lens? I saw some folks shooting like that in the video.

  38. Roeland August 27, 2008 at 3:46 am #

    I am at my work now where I can’t view the clip, but can’t wait to see it at home!

  39. t. August 27, 2008 at 4:37 am #

    PLEASE can someone tell if the exposure is lockable in the movie mode. It absolutely seems that it produces jumpy auto exp videos that are not usable even in ultra amateur environment. Please tell me and for all the crowd out there that the exposure can be locked for shooting in movie mode.

    Many many thanks.

  40. Lisa August 27, 2008 at 4:53 am #

    I’m so with Jim on this one. Not only do I want to jump Canon ship, I want to close shop and work for you!

  41. Gennadiy Litvinyuk August 27, 2008 at 4:57 am #

    That was cool!

    After that video and all those (p)reviews I am already thinking buying Nikon….

    Great job… and photos of course!

  42. wojtek August 27, 2008 at 5:02 am #

    woow looks great, I wanted to buy d200, but now I consider d90, which seems to be great :D

  43. Anonymous August 27, 2008 at 5:13 am #

    A disclosure would be nice (where you paid to do this test and post?).

    Apologies if I am off but some parts of this post sound like an ad done by Nikon (mention only good parts, not the bad), does not sound very objective.

    On of the comments about the movie mode seems misleading:

    “You can control your own depth of field so beautifully using the manual focus ring…”

    This is really great, but apparently you MUST use manual focus as AUTO focus does not seem to work for video. Is this true? If yes then it would be worth mentioning don’t you think?

    It was also suggested that exposure in video mode seems to be fixed: once you start with an exposure you are stuck with it (for up to 5 minutes). Again, can you confirm if this is correct?

    The no auto-focus and fixed exposure I believe seriously limit the video capture mode for a normal user. Any compact can do auto focus and adaptive exposure in video mode.

  44. Ian August 27, 2008 at 5:53 am #

    “And the best part? I’ve talked them into not only putting the camera in my hands, but it the hands of my staff too. Democracy. Nikon loves the idea.”

    Some of of us old 20 year plus Nikon users might have a tough time believing that this new shiney Nikon is the same company.

    the line between raving and shilling for the company is getting a bit blurry on this post

  45. RADIANT GUY August 27, 2008 at 5:58 am #

    your post made me both happy atsad at the same time, happy because I am already a Nikon user and i already own Nikon lens and sad because my D80 is old now :(
    I feel bad about my baby :(

  46. gluejuice August 27, 2008 at 6:02 am #

    Cool stuff! If you’ve seen the borchures on Nikon Websites, some of the pictures featuring Chase’s shoots were used. Cheers!

  47. mark August 27, 2008 at 6:12 am #

    can you lock exposure in video mode????

    i really hope it’s not fully automatic. no advanced amateur will use a camera with flickering automatic exposure

  48. Matt Dorroh August 27, 2008 at 6:49 am #

    Awesome vid! Thanks for sharing it with us!

  49. GeoWulf August 27, 2008 at 7:16 am #

    Oh…. Man! Sooo Coool!

  50. Dov Viramontes August 27, 2008 at 7:16 am #

    WOW!! :-) ) I’m so glad I’ve stuck with Nikon all these years!
    Good job Chase!

  51. Anonymous August 27, 2008 at 7:29 am #

    “this here ain’t no rumor. It’s the real deal” Warning, paid content! Just joking! It’s a great time to be a Nikon shooter now! It’s also really remarkable how Nikon finds new ways of mouth to mouth, viral marketing and this other stuff with the new cool words. Chase executes all this really well.

    The chasejarvisandfriends.com doesn’t really work. I can’t select pictures, only the specs show up. Also it resizes my browser window. I use Safari. Any idea?

  52. David Lang August 27, 2008 at 7:50 am #

    Oh my god this camera is going to change the world. Even what you eat for breakfast. VIDEO?!

    http://www.weminedeeper.wordpress.com

  53. Terence August 27, 2008 at 8:10 am #

    How’s the ergonomics on shooting video on this guy?

    Don’t get me wrong, I think it’s awesome – especially being able to achieve the razor-thin DOF with big diameter lenses – which traditionally had been the realm of professionals shooting on 35mm film (and Red digital cam), unless you built a DOF adapter.

    It’s just that I’ve always found holding a SLR-style point and shoot to be a little bit awkward. Maybe I need better technique.

    I remember reading a piece that Chase linked to (I think by Vincent LaForet?) on how in a few years all the high end assignments will be more than *just* photography. Mixed media, flash, animation, and videos, etc, will also be part of the “mix” that the client would be interested in. I think this camera is certainly a step in that direction. I’m sure the next generation pro body (D4, Canon 1DMk4, etc) will all do video.

  54. Anonymous August 27, 2008 at 8:41 am #

    Dude! It looks like you’ve got a bunch of Nikon plants posting on yer blog, dude.

  55. Scott R. August 27, 2008 at 8:59 am #

    Terence – I found it a pleasure to shoot video with the SLR ergonomics. Compared to the surprisingly awkward body position required by a camcorder, the SLR shooting position offers great comfort and stability. It also puts one hand on the lens for instant creative control of the focus and DOF.

  56. scott r. August 27, 2008 at 9:04 am #

    T – The exposure is lockable in D-Movie mode, no jumpy auto exposure changes.

  57. Cody H. August 27, 2008 at 9:12 am #

    @ anon, as to your question about auto focus in “D-Movie” mode: No you must manually focus while shooting video. Not unlike using an M2 adapter with a Panasonic or Canon HDV cam.

  58. Tim August 27, 2008 at 9:15 am #

    Great video thanks! Saw it on: http://www.yophotographer.com/page.php?t=4946

  59. Jharder August 27, 2008 at 9:17 am #

    I think I just messed myself. Amazing!

  60. Cody H. August 27, 2008 at 9:26 am #

    @ anon and Niklas:
    Your right about the recording times, It’s about 5min or so. I just checked our source files and I’m looking at a clip we shot that is 4:09 in length and the file size is 642.34 mb.

    -Cody

  61. Skunkabilly August 27, 2008 at 9:51 am #

    @ Cody,

    were you all able to test the pop-up Commander flash? Any improvement over the D80?

  62. Kane August 27, 2008 at 10:00 am #

    lucky! got to play with the newest toys! thanks for the video and the info about the D90, love the Seattle shots, good luck with everything

  63. mark August 27, 2008 at 10:04 am #

    come on Chase… does it lock or not????

  64. Anonymous August 27, 2008 at 10:08 am #

    snore…

    okay, so the video is pretty cool. but why couldn’t they accomodate stereo sound into this body?

  65. Cody H. August 27, 2008 at 10:15 am #

    @ Jeff: I haven’t used the commander mode more than a handful of times on the D80, but on the D90 we used it quite a bit (skateboarder in front of red wall) with no problems what so ever.

  66. dan August 27, 2008 at 10:26 am #

    Being a Canon shooter I cant wait to see what Canon will do with the 5D mkII. Maybe I should just get one of these in the meantime.

  67. Jake August 27, 2008 at 11:01 am #

    As a model in one of those shoots, I was WONDERING why Cody cruised by on a longboard shooting “photos” of us as we walked in an extremely badly-lit parking garage (used, so far as I can tell to show off just how good the d90 can shoot in bad-lighting environments). Turns out, he was shooting video on the new hotness!

  68. Omar Casasola August 27, 2008 at 11:48 am #

    @ Cody

    Thanks for all the info.

    Question
    Can you shoot video straight to iMovie or Final Cut Pro using your Mac? I’m already sold on this by your previous info but this would be the icing on the cake!

  69. Anonymous August 27, 2008 at 11:49 am #

    Can you shoot in any ASA mode on the D-Movie mode? Like Asa 3200 etc?

    Thanks for the awesome review.

    BTW, the D-movie mode, oh yeah Nikon your entering into a new realm with this D-movie 24fps mode. Kudos to Nikon, and just keep improving it. Just look at RED camera systems to know your path to follow.

    Michael Pappas
    Arrfilms@hotmail.com
    PappasArts & Arrfilms Main site
    http://www.pbase.com/Arrfilms
    http://www.PappasArts.com
    http://www.Myspace.com/PappasArts
    CONTACT VIA AOL INSTANT MESSENGER
    AT { PAPPASARTS2 }

  70. Jared Froiland August 27, 2008 at 11:53 am #

    Pretty impressed with that testing vid and pics. More impressed with the amount of fun you guys had during it. Nikon rules!

  71. Anonymous August 27, 2008 at 12:09 pm #

    how about a sample movie with the exposure locked?

  72. discontinuity August 27, 2008 at 12:11 pm #

    Lucky!
    Some questions about the photos:
    Were you shooting RAW or jpg?
    How much post processing was done on the pictures?
    What software was used to post-process? Nikon Capture?

    thanks!

  73. Anonymous August 27, 2008 at 12:21 pm #

    Well, this is one of the most, “Dude, I’m like, from the West Coast” bits I’ve every seen (argh), but it does show how good the camera is in the hands of someone that is a working photographer.

    Important for folks to know though, that autofocus does not work while in video mode. It’ll be great for static shots (like the woman standing still reading a book, drinking coffee outdoors, eating lunch, in those samples), but if you have a 4 year old running toward you and away from you rapidly, most folks may not be able to keep up with the focusing. In other words, it’s a GREAT feature, but it won’t replace the “family camcorder”.

    Thanks for the review.

  74. scott August 27, 2008 at 12:29 pm #

    @discontinuity –
    We were simultaneously recording JPEG and RAW while we shot.
    The photos that are being used by Nikon in as the samples are actually the JPEGs because Nikon insisted that the shots used to feature various functions (high ISO, picture control settings, scene recognition, etc.) were created using those features in camera as opposed to in post production.
    The only shot you’ll see with much post processing is the one in Chase’s blog post, where we put a bit of stylistic treatment in to play.
    We played around a bit with Nikon Capture as it provided us with RAW support for the new NEFs, but that was just for fun!

  75. Teddy Tran August 27, 2008 at 12:42 pm #

    I’m starting to wonder why I own a canon. Those pictures in the photo galleria are amazing!!! Man I wish I could just walk around with just a camera and get images like those.

  76. Teddy Tran August 27, 2008 at 12:49 pm #

    Was this whole video shot with the D90?

  77. Cody H. August 27, 2008 at 12:55 pm #

    @ Omar: No you cant shoot tethered per say into final cut. You have to dump the card.

  78. Simon August 27, 2008 at 1:12 pm #

    This is sooo gonna make me sell my Canon. Thanks Chase.

  79. Matthew August 27, 2008 at 2:11 pm #

    Chase,

    I generally idolize you – you have a really cool business, you do really cool work, and you give back in so many cool ways.

    But I feel like you missed it with this one. It all just feels like a big feel-good Nikon commercial to me, which seems like it is so not you. Just sayin’ what’s on my mind. Regardless, you still provide me with a business model to aspire to. Keep on doin’ what you do.

  80. Skunkabilly August 27, 2008 at 2:18 pm #

    Come on guys, lighten up. If he were a Nikon commercial wouldn’t he be pimping the SU800 instead of Pocket Wizards, and would be rocking a CoolPix P5100 instead of a G9?

    For selling commercials, I think they’d be better off getting another Ashton Kutcheresque spokesperson. Maybe Dane Cook? :P

  81. Anonymous August 27, 2008 at 3:18 pm #

    Great! I guess in 3 years this model of promoting goods will be Classic, if it’s not already today. Nikon must have paid a lot, or it’s just a question of recognition to Chase.

    Just look at Scott when he says smth about the flash for macro or smth and how it’s great. I mean , common!

    Also, remember that Canon is for life and Nikon is for Christmas! ;-DDD

  82. scott August 27, 2008 at 3:31 pm #

    You gotta see the on camera flash used for macro, it’s incredible! I mean, auto metered flash six inches from a flower, and it works perfectly? That’s RAD!

  83. Anonymous August 27, 2008 at 4:07 pm #

    Was this entire video shot with the D90?

  84. laurence zankowski August 27, 2008 at 4:19 pm #

    Some random thoughts.

    1. buy 3 – D90s, use one as is. put a Eye-Fi wifi card in 2nd one ( check all versions of eye-fi wifi cards) burn through that camera. and finally rip the last D90 apart and place a huge aluminum heat sink on or about sensor block, hack a sd card interface cable of some sort and feed it into; your choice: firestore, laptop or aja io box. or a fire wire wireless setup. This could be the real test, and could change movie making history. Who knows maybe we’ll see 48 fps or higher out of Nikon in their D4 or D5 cameras!!!

    2nd. RED is not the end all or be all to digital acquisition, I sincerely doubt SONY, JVC, Panasonic and Canon are sitting back in their labs diddling. The cost to rent the camera is not the issue but the cost of lens rentals – support and accessories. Check out Rental houses and see what the Zeiss Digi- primes are renting for, or for that matter a set of Cookes. Hell try to buy a an ARRI prime. At minimum a out the door working RED ONE, non rental but bought, for personal use is about 25,000 dollars US. And don’t start with Scarlet.
    Which leads to; it is not the camera but the lens!!! It is the lens that makes an image appear on the sensor. Nikon makes great lenses. And they do not cost the going rate for a down payment on a house in Aspen. Last thought on RED. Just wait till some one finds a way to hack a P65 back and get live feed into FCPS 2!!! That would be killer! We don’t need 4K or 5K cameras we need 18K or higher cameras!!! ( I was a RED fan till NAB this year).

    http://hollywood-elsewhere.com/2008/08/more_red_basics.php

    3rd. Which leads me to this. The Nikon D90, the Kodak Zi6, and the Panasonic Lumix DMC – LX3 are going to open the market for the boomers/grandparents big time! This is the market and it will explode. All those folks with their great big 60 inch LCD-TVs and now the kids photos larger than life to show family and friends!! So, once again the consumer market will drive the professional end.
    For more info on this look at mark cuban’s blog
    http://www.blogmaverick.com/2008/08/16/the-platform-is-the-message/

    I apologize to Chase Jarvis and his crew for any misguided ideas or thoughts. I am a Nikon user, former Macintosh Systems engineer and want to be clear that these words are my opinion only.

    NO insult or harm intended to anyone.

    Thanks for getting the info out Nikon, Chase and crew

  85. Ajit Anthony Prem August 27, 2008 at 4:44 pm #

    Was this video shot with D90?

    I frankly don’t what people are complaining about, the video rocks. The photos as well.

    I am getting one of these babies.

  86. Anonymous August 27, 2008 at 4:46 pm #

    Whats up with all the negative A-holes. Chase & Crew, I think you did a fantastic job.

  87. Someone in Al Ain August 27, 2008 at 4:56 pm #

    What a perfect review ….well done!!

  88. Balazs August 27, 2008 at 5:29 pm #

    Chase,

    thanks for everything you do for us shutterbugs… you really break down things as they matter for real world applications… I was waiting for the D90 for a while now, and it was worth the wait… I put in my order already!

    Cheers!

  89. hash August 27, 2008 at 6:00 pm #

    Wow, that’s impressive. Nikon need to give me one for my African travels… :) h

  90. Anonymous August 27, 2008 at 6:24 pm #

    How high and low can you shoot the ASA on the D90 in 720p D-movie mode???

    Can you use all the shutter speed including the bulb mode in D-movie mode.???

    For those long streak cinema looks

    Thanks Chase for doing this!

  91. Reflections by the Hill August 27, 2008 at 6:53 pm #

    Sweet!! They pick an awesome team to review the camera. How does the color histogram show? Is it pretty nice. I would like to find out if you change the kelvins right there in the camera.

  92. NikonRumors.com August 27, 2008 at 8:48 pm #

    Great video!

  93. Richard Shih August 27, 2008 at 9:30 pm #

    Hey Chase. Were you shooting that Gasworks Park footage on Saturday, June 7? I was shooting some pictures there and I saw a group of what I assumed were videographers taking footage of the BMX bikers. And now I learned that it was a secret, covert Nikon operation! Small world.

  94. Ashish Das August 28, 2008 at 12:18 am #

    hey chase…were you using the lens that Nikon is supplying with the camera for the pics, or were you using another one. if so, which one? great pics and video.

  95. Christian August 28, 2008 at 12:41 am #

    I can only guess, but I’m pretty sure, besides the movie feature which is not quite there yet, this is a solid product for it’s targeted consumer group.

    I see where all these comments come from. Chase’s post here is clearly not european understatement, but how could it be. or why should it be

    It’s good times to be a Nikon shooter now. Great products, great service. I think it’s really cool that they did the step and got Chase for this “tests” and promotion.

    I still have to say Blogs, YouTube, Microsite – that sounds a lot how I imagine the powerpoint slides at Nikon’s sales and marketing meeting. They might have done a little better.

    anyways, props to Chase, crew and Nikon!

  96. Anonymous August 28, 2008 at 12:44 am #

    In all seriousness, YouTube does not do this justice. You should at least go with Vimeo, but I’ve also found a little secret that I DARE YOU to try.

    If you render out a flash video directly from Final Cut (or whatever you used to edit, and you may need to frameserve to do it), and you do it to reasonable specs (say under 1 mbs) at 640×360, you can upload to Blip.tv and they WILL NOT transcode the video, they’ll leave it untouched. I think it might be the only free video hosting that does that. This means you can get just sick clean video cause there’s only one render/encode and it’s to a high bit rate.

    I DARE YOU TO TRY IT with that video. I bet it looks amazing.

    If you do, you owe me, lol.

    – BayTaper.com

  97. Edward Suhadi August 28, 2008 at 1:09 am #

    Lucky bast*rd… :)
    *sigh*

    You deserved it man, I love to see your team work more than I love to see your images, not that your images are not good, it’s just I can see ‘the love and the proudness’ of the Jarvis Team so much :)

  98. Scott August 28, 2008 at 1:13 am #

    Cool. I just want to buy my first DSLR. Now, D90 and your movie help me to make a decision. D90, I’m coming

  99. Vinay Gupta August 28, 2008 at 2:25 am #

    Any idea about if the D90 has a High Flash Sync Speed ( High FP ) mode ??

    - Released a day before my BDay :) … who is gifting it to me ??

  100. Mr. August 28, 2008 at 3:23 am #

    uhmmmm… D90…
    i’m afraid they’ll have a little problem naming the next “advanced amateur” camera! ;)

    and DAMN! i just shelled 1700€ for a new D300 :(

    M

  101. Geoff August 28, 2008 at 4:25 am #

    Looks like a fantastic upgrade for my Fuji S9500. Now I just need the cash.

  102. Anonymous August 28, 2008 at 4:30 am #

    Nikon D-90 is mostly weired junk on a D-80 not a step up on the D-300.

    16MP+
    FF
    Better meter would have been nice
    Less noise than a D-300 would have been nice.

    http://www.DougHarperPhoto.com

  103. Anonymous August 28, 2008 at 5:36 am #

    But you forgot to tell how many MINUTES D90 shoots video? I think it’s only about 5 min and that’s not really good video. Most of the cases it would be fine, BUT even some skateboard tricks in pool would take longer.

  104. t. August 28, 2008 at 6:05 am #

    Regarding the 5min limit: You can always shoot with two identical cams triggered one after another, the offset would be minimal. If the video is good enough.
    I for example couldn’t edit or output the original D90 24P video in Premiere without getting ghosting or some sort of frame blending.
    You can download the original D90 footage from here http://www.vimeo.com/1612204 if you are registered member, somewhere down on the right…

    T

  105. jon August 28, 2008 at 8:32 am #

    i’m trying to figure out how to hang with y’all sometime, is all. i see this crap going on in my backyard and i’m not included, and i get pissed. ;-)

  106. Kim Raff August 28, 2008 at 9:10 am #

    I’m a little confused was the whole video shot with the d-movie function on the camera or was only that small portion of video (where you talk about the d-movie function) shoot with that function. I’m very interested in the d-movie function’s quality compared with other high end video cameras.

  107. Thomas August 28, 2008 at 9:21 am #

    Is there any way to shoot with mirror lock up on the D90?

  108. Dartanyon Race August 28, 2008 at 9:42 am #

    @Anonymous RE: Video Bulb Shutter

    Because at it’s heart this is a DSLR, the mirror is inherently locked up and the shutter open while it is live previewing (the origination of the video mode). So the video frame rate is only a function of the sensor refreshing, not an actual shutter. The D90 takes the aperture and ISO (ASA) information from the Live Preview mode and uses it for the video.

  109. Rodrigo August 28, 2008 at 11:15 am #

    Glad I’m alive to see the first DSLR with movie mode. But I’m gonna wait for D100. These are the reasons:

    - 1280 x 720: I want full hd
    - 24 fps: 30 would also be nice
    - mono sound: is this a joke? I was expecting AT LEAST stereo. A 5.1 audio would be the reasonable choice for the camera quality.
    - No auto focus when recording: must have
    - mjpeg: another (bad) joke. H264 is a must, even if now few software can edit it.
    - 5 minutes limit: must be limited by memory capacity only
    - 3 still pics while recording, limited to 1280×720: won’t give 1300 bucks for a camera with any of these limits

    I think the poor sound is a kick in the guts. I’d reconsider buying it now if supported at least stereo. Anyway I liked these specs more than canon’s d50, which prioritized more megapixels for stills. Despite my hard conclusions for the first movie capable DSRL, I must congratulate Nikon for their initiative and I’m sure they will put these features on next model. I think D100 will be my next camera.

    Regards

  110. John_B August 28, 2008 at 11:18 am #

    Whaddabuncha fanbois. 5 minutes max video with no stereo inputs, in a funky-for-video form factor?

    @t. Really? Ya gotta buy two and deal with the offset? Or howzabout buying something, yaknow, dedicated to shooting video and not tacked on to the live preview mode of a dSLR?

    Don’t get me wrong, this is great technology that is a step in a cool direction, but its not the be-all-end-all video camera replacement its being made out to be. There is a reason this tech went into the upgraded from the D80 and not the upgrade of the D300, it’s tech that’s just not ready for prime time. Yet…

    You guys that are “OMG I’m totally selling all my Canon glass and buying Nikon!” are going to (a) make Nikon very happy, (b) going to make some Canon shooter buying your gear from eBay or Craigslist very happy, and (c) going to make yourselves unhappy when you realize their is going to be a Canon with the same feature in a matter of months and you just re-bought all new glass for a gimmicky feature.

    Oh, and, hey, Chase, I was on the same hemisphere when you shot the vid, so that totally makes us like best buds, right? Call me! LOL!

  111. Jürgen August 28, 2008 at 11:46 am #

    Looks great to me! Would not know what to choose : D90 or D700.

  112. Anonymous August 28, 2008 at 12:23 pm #

    >Glad I'm alive to see the first DSLR with movie mode.
    >But I'm gonna wait for D100. These are the reasons:

    Wait? The Nikon D100 is six years old now…

  113. Anonymous August 28, 2008 at 12:29 pm #

    @ Cody

    What sort of double system are you using to get sync sound? What issues, if any, are there with syncing? Any noticeable drift on 5 minute takes?

    (PS: I know a producer that STILL insists on having a Nagra as back up for DAT. I happen to think she’s paranoid, but she’s the one with the house in BH, not me.)

  114. Rodrigo August 28, 2008 at 2:56 pm #

    > Wait? The Nikon D100 is six years old now…

    Well, since I'm more tuned in Canon and totally ignorant on Nikons numbering, I made this mistake. When I wrote D100 please read "D90 replacement". Thanks for the observation.

    Regards

  115. Eduardo August 28, 2008 at 3:04 pm #

    Hi.. very interesting info. I have one question. How would you rate the d90 metering performance, is it comparable and consistent like the D300 meter? The D80 meter wasnt very good, lots of reports of inconsistency and blown highlights. I appreciate your comments on this.

    Kind regards, Eduardo

  116. Cody H. August 28, 2008 at 3:11 pm #

    @ Anon
    I would love to have a Nagra! With The D90, I agree it’s a bit overkill. When we were testing I didn’t use any back up audio source because I wanted to see what the D90 was capable of.

  117. Andrew A August 28, 2008 at 3:39 pm #

    Hey – Moses Coulee! Nice.

  118. Anonymous August 28, 2008 at 5:58 pm #

    Cody,

    Can you look thru the lens reflex while filing in D-movie mode and focus that way instead of using the LCD.

  119. Anmol Mishra August 28, 2008 at 7:12 pm #

    Hi! I am thinkin of capturing the 1080i signal via HDMI. Can someone please confirm if the HDMI signal shows the lcd screen overlays as well ?? Hopefully there is a way for us to shut off the overlays and get a pure video signal on HDMI..

  120. Anonymous August 28, 2008 at 7:36 pm #

    Chase. thanks so much for sharing. Fanboy stuff aside, the camera is great. It’s not the end all be all, as there is, will always be a technology battle between the top brands. That really has nothing to do with this, and all back and forths about it are really not all that relevant. What is relevant is that what you are doing as an artist is great. I’ve watched your pictures evolve over time. you’ve found a voice. But beyond photography and video, you’re challenging the methods of decades of media and the companies and mentalities that are being clung to by 99.9 of the population on this planet.

    The camera? Cool. What you’re doing with pictures? Cooler. How you’re changing the landscape? Coolest.

  121. Adam August 28, 2008 at 10:40 pm #

    Just visiting this again…I have to say the vid thing is making me crazy…Chase if I see you around town with one of these, I WILL cam-jack you!
    Thanks for the intro to the Blakes.
    So what this is not the perfect vidcam…it’s one freakin’ grand and you can put a plethora of the finest glass made one it, get creative with it’s limitations!
    Chase you are lucky I don’t know where you live…when are these out anyway?

  122. james reichman August 28, 2008 at 10:57 pm #

    cody i know you have said it will import into final cut but what about imovie or even i photo. if i am going to pay the money to get this camera i would have wait to pay the money for final cut.

  123. james reichman August 28, 2008 at 10:57 pm #

    cody i know you have said it will import into final cut but what about imovie or even i photo. if i am going to pay the money to get this camera i would have wait to pay the money for final cut.

  124. Jenny Hill August 29, 2008 at 4:48 am #

    Sure you’re all tired of hearing it but here it comes again…great job on the video! Best one yet!

    C’mon Nikon…give my poor bank balance a break ;0)

  125. Michael Ströck August 29, 2008 at 10:05 am #

    I’ve been a Canon user for 11 years, have two cameras, 8 lenses and 2 flash units, but fuck them. I’ll give my current camera, (plus a standard and zoom lens), to my girlfriend, and eBay off the rest.

    Nikon here I come.

    Why the fuck does the 50d have 15 million pixels? Practically nobody who’s only shooting for fun needs that, and even most of the pros I know think it’s getting ridiculous. Low-light performance might be catching up to Nikon’s? Well great, but a year to late. All the rest of the bells and whistles won’t help semi-pros, either. Magnesium body? Oh great, it’s just that in 10 years of dragging around cameras under water, 600 meters deep in vertical caves and on half of the friggin’ alps, I’ve NEVER made so much as a dent in any SLR.

    What might benefit most non-pros for most of their photography: Give them a fast (f1.4 or at least f2.0), reasonably priced and sharp (the Sigma one isn’t) 35mm lens for standard use – the 50mm/1.4 is too fucking narrow at 1.6 FOVCF, plus too expensive for most.

    Nikon has that one, as well. Oh, AND I’ll be able to SHOOT FRIGGIN’ MOVIES without lugging around an extra camera – why in the world is that not in the 50d, which has an MSRP of $100 more? What were you thinking? Please don’t tell me you didn’t realize somebody was going to do that around this point in time.

    Well… Sorry for the rant, but barring some really awesomely overheated eBay-auctions, I’ll lose a lot of money over the next few weeks …

  126. Anonymous August 29, 2008 at 10:27 am #

    @ michael: i htink it’s fair to hate on canon for missing a few boats recently (D50, focus issues, no video, et), be totally frustrated, etc but let it go. Channel that energy into new pictures with your new camera. The focus of this post is really what a nice job Nikon has done. Let’s not let it slide into a N vs. C debate!

    Straight up the D90 is a sweet new camera on the scene. Good of Chase to bang on it for a while and tell us what he thinks…

  127. jstill August 29, 2008 at 1:35 pm #

    Looks like a nice backup body…2 questions…can you shoot/control D90 tethered to workstation? Is it possible to capture 720p video straight to workstation via USB or HDMI?
    thanks

  128. Anonymous August 29, 2008 at 2:41 pm #

    Definitely should have mentioned … “oh yeah, this is a paid commercial” if you were going to script it. Love the results and the camera, but disclosure about viral marketing is key.

  129. David Ditzler August 30, 2008 at 6:33 am #

    ———
    Rodrigo said…

    – 1280 x 720: I want full hd
    – 24 fps: 30 would also be nice
    – mono sound: is this a joke? I was expecting AT LEAST stereo. A 5.1 audio would be the reasonable choice for the camera quality.
    – No auto focus when recording: must have
    – mjpeg: another (bad) joke. H264 is a must, even if now few software can edit it.
    – 5 minutes limit: must be limited by memory capacity only
    – 3 still pics while recording, limited to 1280×720: won’t give 1300 bucks for a camera with any of these limits

    ———-

    I am very happy with these decisions Nikon made.

    - 1280x720x 24P is great. Full HD would be nice but not at the expense of being more heavily compressed or a codec hard to deal with.
    - I am fine with mono sound. If you were really concerned about the sound you wouldn’t be capturing it with this anyway, and 5.1 surround reasonable HA! What surround sounds do you want to pick up when all 5.1 mics are located on your camera body? The sound of your hand on the lens or year breathing behind the camera? Yes a stereo input jack would be great even if it was a 3.5mm.

    - no autofocus. Thank you!

    - MJPEG is fine with me. I would rather have a frame accurate codec that is easy to edit with. If you are limited to 5min anyway due to the sensor than I am happy.

    I just hope there is a decent way to lock the exposure when shooting movies.

    I’m glad you can lock white balance though.

    To me this would be a perfect camera for capturing a little bit of video to use with stills to make a little movie of an event. I’ve done things like this before and I think it is the sweet spot for capturing an even without boring people with hour long slide show or wedding video.

    here is an example of what I mean.
    http://www.ditzlerphoto.com/journal/heidi-guido-wedding-slide-show-and-ipod-video.html

    the video from this was shot with a tiny Panasonic Lumix at 848×480 x 30P with mono audio. If I could have used the same SLR I was shooting stills with it would have been nice.

    I had the Casio EX-F1 for a project and that had some cool features but it just seemed so much like a toy. The N90 for the same price looks like a real tool that I could use. Even if I never shot video with it, it would be a very capable still camera. The Casio I never felt that way about.

    Also someone had to be first with putting decent video in a dSLR. I am happy with this first showing and I’m sure it will only get better. I am also happy that they didn’t come with a “hybrid” camera that does nothing well. It looks like a very good still camera that happens to have a usable video mode.

    I imagine this as a great B-roll camera too. Shoot some nice short segments with short DOF or wide shots and incredibly long shots that getting with an HD camera is not as cost effective yet. Heck just decent 35mm adapter for an HD camera will cost you more than than the D90.

    cheers
    -david

  130. Roger Madsen August 30, 2008 at 11:20 am #

    Cool camera and video and everything but I got to say that the song in the video really rocks! I’m heading to iTunes rigt now to download the album with this song!

  131. Anonymous August 30, 2008 at 12:50 pm #

    Hell yes! Thanks for the introduction to the Blakes btw. D90? eaaaaah. Cool vid, but the camera…maybe. One of the things I do appreciate however. that I feel like I get legitimately interesting content from you and your blog with every visit. I’m a self admitted tough critic, having been steeped in this culture my entire life. Art and photo: you nail it. Music: you know it. Talent: oozing. Positive attitude: so damn refreshing. Seriously, god what breath of fresh air. While you might have every right, please don’t let it go to your head. I confess I’m not so crazy about your photo platform choice (I’m canon for life), but I respect the hell out of you and all your endeavors. It’s as if the rest of the industry is left standing on their heels when you’ve just laid rubber and ripped outta town in some restored ol motorcyle. Sure the license plate might be crooked (like your ballcap) and the paint might be a little faded (you’re human), but the motor is tip top. All that remains for the rest of us is the smell of burning rubber. Somehow, I’m learning to love that smell. Thanks for your vibe. -anon so my canon friends won’t kill me.

  132. Mr. ED August 30, 2008 at 1:11 pm #

    Good stuff. D movie looks interesting. When are they available?

  133. Thebes August 30, 2008 at 8:26 pm #

    I just held off on getting a 2nd HV20 to get this instead.

    No stereo sound? Not a problem, good quality sound is always done off camera anyway, and with a digital audio recorder and a digital camera there will not be significant sync issues.

    I do wish it would go more than 5 minutes. Any idea if this is a programmed limit, or might it be possible to hack some kind of cooler onto it?

    To people saying “Get a dedicated video camera”- I have one. I was going to buy a second along with a $1200 adapter to gain control over DOF. This camera does something that no other camera costing less than a decent new car does- it allows shallow DOF and interchangeable lenses… Like a poorman’s RedOne in that sense. Even with a DOF adapter you have a worse solution since you lose at least 1 2/3rds stops of light before hitting your noisier camcorder sensor.

  134. Anonymous August 31, 2008 at 7:54 pm #

    Question on focusing speed+++
    Looking at focusing speed and tracking how does the D90 compare to the D300 for shooting sports?

  135. Rodrigo September 1, 2008 at 9:02 am #

    ———————————-
    David Ditzler said…

    I am very happy with these decisions Nikon made.

    - 1280x720x 24P is great. Full HD would be nice but not at the expense of being more heavily compressed or a codec hard to deal with.
    - I am fine with mono sound. If you were really concerned about the sound you wouldn’t be capturing it with this anyway, and 5.1 surround reasonable HA! What surround sounds do you want to pick up when all 5.1 mics are located on your camera body? The sound of your hand on the lens or year breathing behind the camera? Yes a stereo input jack would be great even if it was a 3.5mm.

    - no autofocus. Thank you!

    - MJPEG is fine with me. I would rather have a frame accurate codec that is easy to edit with. If you are limited to 5min anyway due to the sensor than I am happy.
    ———————————-

    I’d pay 1500 bucks for a dsrl that release me for carrying a full hd avchd 5.1 camcorder like Canon HV20, Panasonic SD9 or Sony SR12. This movie specs are for kids. By the way, each of these two camcorders have 5.1 audio without the need of rear or side mics as you pretended. Funny comment anyway.

    I just can’t figure out someone who want a dslr’s still quality being happy with this movie quality. Believe me, mono audio is AWFUL! It looks sultry, like hearing through a can. If you’re fine with this it’s just because you won’t use it at all. Buy a d-50 instead and get a better still. Quality autofocus are a must for anyone like me who want a camcorder replacement on a DSLR.

    I know I’ll have more criticism for this last sentence but where are those guys in every (pre-d90) movie enabled dslr thread that posted “who needs it” or “buy a camcorder” now? Every post in this one is happy with the movie feature and its evolution is a trend. If you’re happy with these specs, please do me a favor, buy it and help Nikon building the next model, the one that will have the features I said and that I’ll buy.

  136. Jollence Lee September 1, 2008 at 10:52 am #

    Jim, the Nikon’s door is always open for you.

  137. Jon Joaquin September 1, 2008 at 4:50 pm #

    Hey just wanted to say that I love you do… I myself am gradually working my way up to being a professional and I really want to get my hands on the Nikon D3, but the way you made the Nikon D90 look, Gawd That was HOT!!! .. but yea great videos you guys make, and i compliment on the music… You guys really know how to mix Photography, with Music… very inspiring..

    well thanx for doing the things you do!!! You guys are awesome Photographers!!! Gawd I wanna be just like you!!!

    signed~ Jon Joaquin

  138. Jon Joaquin September 1, 2008 at 4:51 pm #

    Hey just wanted to say that I love what you do!!! I myself am gradually working my way up to being a professional and I really want to get my hands on the Nikon D3, but the way you made the Nikon D90 look, Gawd That was HOT!!! .. but yea great videos you guys make, and i compliment on the music… You guys really know how to mix Photography, with Music… very inspiring..

    well thanx for doing the things you do!!! You guys are awesome Photographers!!! Gawd I wanna be just like you!!!

    signed~ Jon Joaquin

  139. Anonymous September 1, 2008 at 5:56 pm #

    @rodrigo

    AVCHD is a crappy surcompressed format. MJPEG stay good and MJPEG2000 is a standard for Digital Cinema Industry !

    I agree for full HD !

    But this D90 is an interesting new step in HD mixed to DSLR. No 6000 $ HD camcorder is good for DOF… A good stereo audio recorder is available from 200 € and is useful for good sound capture.

    I made somme test on Premiere Pro (PC) with MainConcept MPEG Pro HD. Natives files from Nikon D90 -3 found on the net !-are easy to edit (HD 720p 24 cine) with no recompression for cut parts (SmartEdit).

    Be sure young directors, and schools for learning around image movie creation and optical art will be able to get something good from this Nikon D90….

    Tomorrow, new will be better !

    T. De la Vega

  140. Michael Hurcomb September 1, 2008 at 7:53 pm #

    Maybe it’s just me but I can’t get the video and audio to play on the iTunes podcast for this video. It works for about 20 seconds and after that it keeps playing without audio or video. I’ve tried the iPhone and Apple TV podcast and it’s the same on both.

    Michael

  141. Cody September 2, 2008 at 12:03 am #

    Just downloaded it on my macbook pro and my ehem…windows box. Every thing seems fine on this end. Try maybe downloading It directly from iTunes? That’s always has worked for me.

  142. SteveH September 2, 2008 at 5:42 am #

    If Chase Jarvis isn’t the epitome of cool, I don’t know what is. Great images, great video, great music. An inspiration to me to get out and take more photos.

  143. michalgarcia.com September 2, 2008 at 8:13 am #

    Thanks for your comment on my blog Chase. high-five!

    As a Canon user, this post naturally makes me kick myself for being a Canon user. I’ll be waiting to see what Canon decides bust out in the next year or so. Bring it on!

  144. Christian September 2, 2008 at 11:57 am #

    We want more videos Chase! More!

  145. Anonymous September 2, 2008 at 4:57 pm #

    Is it possible to set manually aperture and iris during movie shooting? How to avoid automated aperture and iris control during movie shooting?
    I saw “autocontrast” and “autobrightness” behavior in video (d-movie) samples.
    Thank you.
    Vladimir

  146. Cody H. September 2, 2008 at 5:34 pm #

    @ Vladimir
    You are able to adjust exposure on the lcd screen using exposure compensation. But I don’t recall adjusting the aperture while shooting D-Movie. (remember, we were using these cameras with firmware 0.0.1) things may have changed.

    C

  147. William September 3, 2008 at 1:58 am #

    My goodness… this is so cool. My dream has come true earlier than I thought! I will have to start saving for this camera in addition to my D3.

  148. Rodrigo September 3, 2008 at 7:35 am #

    My last 2 cents on this thread:

    ——————————-
    Anonymous said…

    AVCHD is a crappy surcompressed format. MJPEG stay good and MJPEG2000 is a standard for Digital Cinema Industry !

    I agree for full HD !

    But this D90 is an interesting new step in HD mixed to DSLR. No 6000 $ HD camcorder is good for DOF… A good stereo audio recorder is available from 200 € and is useful for good sound capture.
    ——————————-

    The drawback of mpeg is the video size. I wouldn’t be surprised if this 5 minutes video reached 1 gb. Maybe this is not a problems for Digital Cinema Industry but it is for a amateur. How much video would you record with a 8gb card? 30-40 minutes splited in 5 min video files? AVCHD is a good balance between quality and size, it is the codec for blu-ray (so you don’t have to re-encode for this purpose) and hi-def camcorders use it. I don’t think there will be another choice in the future.

    Regarding the stereo recorder I wasn’t aware of this kind of device. I searched some and found interesting this gadget, like the zoom h2 and h4. Anyway I was waiting for a movie enabled DSLR to take nice stills AND hi-def (compact) camcorder quality movies just not to carry and operate two devices at the same time. Using an external audio recorder is, IMO, even worse than carrying a DSLR and a camcorder.

  149. Bushir September 3, 2008 at 8:39 am #

    You’ve got the best job in the freakin’ world! And I’m lovin’ that D90.

  150. Anonymous September 3, 2008 at 12:45 pm #

    Attention Nikon Reps:

    Almost 35 THOUSAND hits, and 1 Thousand responses at DVXuser in one week on your D90 D-movie mode. Please come and join in.

    http://www.dvxuser.com/V6/showthread.php?t=145435

    Thanks,

    THX1138-2806

  151. Anonymous September 3, 2008 at 12:52 pm #

    Cody H. said Wrote:You are able to adjust exposure on the lcd screen using exposure compensation. But I don’t recall adjusting the aperture while shooting D-Movie. (remember, we were using these cameras with firmware 0.0.1) things may have changed.))))

    Cody,

    Your telling me ( professionals ) like you, and your fellow team, hired by Nikon to do the marketing for the D90 didn’t know to use a DSLR in manual mode. Pros use manual mode not auto mode. You know that, right? Just doesn’t make sense that pro’s get the camera in hand, however don’t seem to have a clue even how the basics of the D90/DSLR works. Just talking the basics here. Even V.001 will have basic (M ) mode functions.

  152. Skunkabilly September 3, 2008 at 1:06 pm #

    Hi Cody,

    Can you recommend a good audio recorder? (what did you guys use)

  153. Cody H. September 3, 2008 at 1:30 pm #

    @ anon

    Whoa there partner, take it easy. I think you misunderstood the post. When Shooting in “D-Movie” mode you can only adjust the exposure while the camera is capturing footage, using the exposure compensation button on the back of the camera. Otherwise like any DSLR in Manual mode you set your aperture and Shutter speed pre-capture.

  154. Cody H. September 3, 2008 at 1:42 pm #

    @ Jeff,
    Tascam, Fostex, and Sony make really great field recorders in the sub $500 dollar range. When we tested the D90′s we wanted to see what the camera could do by itself, so no additional audio recorders were used.

  155. Ilkka September 3, 2008 at 4:51 pm #

    I know the D90 doesn’t support metering with most manual focus lenses. But does it allow the use of these lenses in manual exposure mode within the D-movie function? I.e. are manual focus lenses useable with D-movie. This is important since the function is limited to manual focus, these lenses would allow easier focusing since they’re made for MF. Thanks

  156. Cody H. September 4, 2008 at 9:22 am #

    @ ikka
    Yep, they are totally compatible.

  157. Anonymous September 4, 2008 at 11:23 am #

    Hey, thanks for the hands-on D90 preview. How is the exposure in Matrix mode? My D80 always tends to expose for dark areas and blow highlights in matrix mode. Most D80 users adopted a -.7 EV exposure compensation as a rule of thumb.

    Anyway, if the D90 is better at this, I’m in for one!

  158. Anonymous September 4, 2008 at 9:09 pm #

    To the writer about how much storage is required to store the 720p video that this camera creates.
    The key to answer this question is given by Nikon which is that in 720p mode, this camera uses M-JPEG video compression.
    Using this fact we can calculate the storage required.
    For 30 minutes of 640 x 480 at
    30 fps, 2 gigabytes are required.
    Using this equation
    (1280 x 720 x 24)/(640 x 480 X 30) = 2.4
    This translates to 30 minutes of 1280 x 720 at 24 fps, 4.8 gigabytes are required.
    This would require a SD card with a speed of 3 Megabyte/second.

    I hope this clears up a few specifications omitted by Nikon.

    However my question is,
    How can this camera produce properly croped 1920 x 1080 (16:9)
    pictures for use on most high def.
    displays.

  159. Anonymous September 4, 2008 at 9:30 pm #

    I suspect the video quality of the D90 to be the same as the Sony HDR-CX12 which uses MPEG4 AVC/H.262 compression to store 1080p video.
    Both cameras require 4.8 gigabytes
    to store 30 minutes of video.

  160. Anonymous September 5, 2008 at 12:50 am #

    To the best of my knowledge, there are no set top boxes (blu ray or dvd)that support the D90 video format.
    Sony’s video AVCHD format is supported by a number of set top boxes and most PCs.
    The D90 video format is only supported on PCs

  161. Anonymous September 5, 2008 at 4:02 am #

    ” Most D80 users adopted a -.7 EV exposure compensation as a rule of thumb.”

    but you’ve never used a d80 did you?

    get one, use -0.7 and see. it’s not true that you need -EV. it’s all about the metering area.

  162. Anonymous September 5, 2008 at 7:44 pm #

    First west user just bought the N90.

    post
    http://www.dvxuser.com/V6/showpost.php?p=1393545&postcount;=1294

    thread
    http://www.dvxuser.com/V6/showthread.php?t=145435&page;=130

    Quote """The skew is TERRIBLE. I mean HORRID. With that aside, yup. Cause just like every other shortcoming there's a way around it."""""

    This is to bad. Nikon should have over clocked the D90 cmos sensor in D movie mode. Then this would have been less. What is weird, the shot that Chase did with the bike guy spinning in the air was pretty smooth and didn't have terrible skew, more like the HV20/30, but fine. :-(

  163. Anonymous September 5, 2008 at 7:44 pm #

    First west user just bought the N90.

    post
    http://www.dvxuser.com/V6/showpost.php?p=1393545&postcount;=1294

    thread
    http://www.dvxuser.com/V6/showthread.php?t=145435&page;=130

    Quote """The skew is TERRIBLE. I mean HORRID. With that aside, yup. Cause just like every other shortcoming there's a way around it."""""

    This is to bad. Nikon should have over clocked the D90 cmos sensor in D movie mode. Then this would have been less. What is weird, the shot that Chase did with the bike guy spinning in the air was pretty smooth and didn't have terrible skew, more like the HV20/30, but fine. :-(

  164. Philscbx September 5, 2008 at 11:57 pm #

    This is truly difficult, but after investing so much in red banded lenses @ min of 1500 each, I’m about ready to throw it all in the ditch in a drive by at 160 klh to try Nikon this time. Seeing that video test on dpreview a week ago was a serious poke in the eye.. Dammit, Now I have to go and redo all my images from the last tours to Europe with this guy.

  165. Anonymous September 6, 2008 at 12:27 pm #

    @ anon:
    The the D-90 is totally mac compatible. Please read the comments before you post incorrect information.

  166. D90ADDICTED September 6, 2008 at 12:40 pm #

    if you could help me to buy one, that would be very nice ;-)
    (you never know ;-) )
    http://ineedanikond90.blogspot.com/

    thanks !

  167. Zak.Shelhamer September 6, 2008 at 8:04 pm #

    Radical man!

  168. dlevine September 9, 2008 at 7:55 am #

    I’m a videographer with plenty of expensive cameras, but this is just awesome. If anyone has just got the d90 or chris if you still have your prototypes and are in the NY area lets meetup and i’ll throw one into a full video rig and make all the video boys really drool.

  169. Anonymous September 11, 2008 at 8:25 pm #

    Just tying a few facts together.
    Nikon confirmed that there is a time limit of 5 minutes per video clip. As mentioned earlier 30 minutes of an 720p MJPEG compressed takes up approximately 4.8 gigabytes. Some one mentioned above that this 5 minute clip took up 920 megabytes. This sounds about right. So a 4 gigabytes card could contain four of these 5 minute clips with about 0.3 gigabytes to spare.

  170. Anonymous September 13, 2008 at 9:28 am #

    For updates and information on filming with the d90 visit:
    d90movie.blogspot.com

  171. drubioso September 13, 2008 at 4:58 pm #

    you can control and lock exposure. i could not figure it out and no one would give me a straight answer on how to do it without a battery pack.

    I finally found it!!!!!

    menu > custom settings menu > f control > f4 Assign AE-L/AF-L button > AE-L Lock (hold)

    Now all you have to do is go to regular manual mode shooting, Live Preview or not it doesn't matter. Just click the AE-L and it will lock.

    : )

    ok… now let's make some sweet videos!!!

  172. Mark September 13, 2008 at 5:18 pm #

    I bought the camera right before I left for China (still here). Impulse buy based on this blog.! The low light support is awesome.

    I only took the quick start guide with me, but I found it to be almost nil and void on docs on the video. I have been playing around with the video a little bit, but find the docs to be lacking. Does anyone have a good tutorial out there on what you can and can’t control with the video settings?

    @drubioso have you written one up? :)

  173. Anonymous September 13, 2008 at 5:49 pm #

    just bought a d80 prompley returned to ritz and got d90.

  174. Anonymous September 16, 2008 at 6:45 am #

    The video STINKS! I bought this camera after seeing its video performance only on the camera's LCD screen, where it looked beautiful. On my computer and on my HDTV (HDMI cable) it is far INFERIOR to the standard 640x480video from my Canon G9. I'd have expected a camera with the D90's superior specifications to produce video far superior to that of a P&S; digicam (even an excellent one like the G9), perhaps on a par with the video from my Sony HDR-TG1pocket-size camcorder–and why not, with its relatively huge sensor and lots of space in the body to put circuitry? But no. And this is despite writing a much larger file for given length of recording.

    I am so disappointed that I am writing a detailed and strongly stated complaint (a physical letter by snail mail!) to Nikon USA's VP for customer relations. If anyone has a constructive response, please email me at hlritter(at)bex(dot)net.

  175. Anonymous September 17, 2008 at 1:54 am #

    to everyone who thinks D90 is great, awesome, whatever camera:

    http://www.dpreview.com/news/0809/08091705canon_5dmarkII.asp

    :-D D

  176. Skunkabilly September 17, 2008 at 7:50 am #

    hey anon!

    Yeah I saw that last night. Pretty neat huh!! It is a great time to be a photographer!

    (I am already running Nikon but am excited as heck for the G10!!)

  177. John_B September 17, 2008 at 1:32 pm #

    I said:

    “You guys that are “OMG I’m totally selling all my Canon glass and buying Nikon!” are going to … (c) going to make yourselves unhappy when you realize their is going to be a Canon with the same feature in a matter of months and you just re-bought all new glass for a gimmicky feature.”

    Then this pops up: http://www.dpreview.com/previews/canoneos5dmarkii/

    1080p H.264 up to 12 minutes, VGA H.264 up to 24 mins per clip

    At least you can’t say you weren’t warned…

    ;)

  178. Ian Walker September 18, 2008 at 6:14 pm #

    Can anyone explain what the deal is with the 5 minute limit for HD video recording? Everyone points to the sensor needing to cool down, but the camera will record 20 minutes in non HD.

  179. Anonymous September 19, 2008 at 10:27 am #

    I would like to find out, from the Canon G9 owner above that got bad video results, were you manualy focusing the D90 when you were making your video??

    The D90 requires manual focusing during video recording.

    Also did you have the camera set for proper lighting?

    FYI
    Canon came out with there entry in this market. There camera costs $3000.

    It features

    1920 x 1080 video recorded
    in Apple .MOV compression
    with a 30 minute clip limit.

    A 21 Megapixel Image and goes to ISO 25,600.

    As far as the d90′s clip limit goes, it might be that the processors memory mapping may be limited to around a 1 gigabyte file size.

  180. Anonymous September 21, 2008 at 2:17 am #

    I work in a photographic store, and we have been trialling the D90 since it came into stock. A couple of points i wish to make are:

    Dont try to make this camera something which it is clearly not. Nikon never claimed to be releasing a camera which could “do it all”. think of the movie mode as an added feature which you CAN use, not something that it is designed especially for. even on the most advanced HD cams, do you expect high quality photographs?

    Also, just a slight point on the movie mode, we noticed quite severe skewing on verticals when panning at moderate or high speeds, but depending on your lens, you have a lot of freedom to create a “look”.

    I’m traditionally a canon buyer, and have been looking to upgrade, and am thinking that the D90 is the way to go.

  181. Anonymous September 21, 2008 at 6:00 pm #

    The folks at circuit city were kind enough to let me test the D90.
    I purchased from them a 2 GB sandisk extreem III SD card and recorded a 2 minute 720p clip. I then played this clip on both a
    24″ 1080p and a 27′ 720p/1080i monitor.

    At full screen on both monitors, the playback quality was good.

    With this camera one needs to make sure the camera is held steady, and kept in focus for good results. The file size for this clip was 320 Megabytes. At pointed out earlier once panning stoped, good video was recorded.

    In conclusion I am most likely going to purchase this camera over the D60.

  182. Anonymous September 22, 2008 at 9:51 pm #

    One more piece of good news.

    I can edit the D90 720 p video using adobe premiere 2.0 pro.

  183. Camille September 23, 2008 at 2:00 am #

    awesome camera!!
    BHV Cursus

  184. ugeen September 29, 2008 at 4:32 pm #

    this is really cool

  185. Daniel Regueira October 1, 2008 at 7:10 am #

    This is great, I’ve been considering getting the d300 for the new sensor and amazing ISO’s but this is a lot better for me and also within my reach financially since I’m on a teenage budget. I need to upgrade from my d40 cause i hate it lol and this camera is just really REALLY cool all around

  186. Anonymous October 4, 2008 at 11:07 am #

    I just purchased the D90 and it’s pretty sweet. One thing which is occurring with me is that the LiveView button is causing the lens to stop down (or the monitor is emulating such an effect,) which makes the monitor quite dark at high F’s. Is anyone else encountering that?

    This may not be the forum to bring it up, but with many people anxious to run out and buy one, I thought I’d bring it up if this is a larger problem.

  187. Jeff Bach October 6, 2008 at 9:17 am #

    Love the notion of 720P video coming out of a still camera form factor. I own/love/use a Panasonic HVX200, but lense limitations are clear from day one. Nikon lenses shooting 720p video opens up a whole new world.

    All that being said though….DO YOUR HOMEWORK b4 buying a D90 especially if you want it for the video features. I think there are some issues with skew that can easily make D90 video unusable. But ymmv :)
    Jeff
    Quietwater Films

  188. Cody H. October 6, 2008 at 3:11 pm #

    @ Jeff
    Yeah there is some skewing when doing really fast pans. I noticed this at first when i was testing the pre-production camera. I wasn’t really alarmed myself because I would never pan that fast and the rest of the good features far out-weight the bad. My advice, keep your dvx its a great camera on so many levels, and go buy yourself a d90!

  189. silver24multimedia October 7, 2008 at 7:19 am #

    Great work Chase and company… I am excited about the new Nikon D90 and the movie capabilities that we are launching a new site http://www.digitalslrfilms.com/ where users of digital slrs can post movies created with dslr cameras. The site is scheduled to be launched fully sometime in November in anticipation of the new Canon 5D MK11. We welcome suggestions from all.

    Cheers!

  190. seoulman October 10, 2008 at 6:22 am #

    I’m in the market for DSLR. After years of sitting on the fence, I’m making the transition from film to digital. I’m using a Contax RTS III right now.

    Is this (the Nikon D90) the camera to get? Is it that much better than what the competition has at similar price points? If any of you are wondering, the camera I’m comparing it against is the Canon 50D. I’ve been a fan of Nikon since I started taking pictures, but I’m having a difficult time deciding between the two. Both suit my needs from a DSLR with the Canon being a bit faster burst performance, broader native ISO and 14-bit processing. More mega-pixels don’t impress me much.

    Chase makes the D90 sound like it’s the be all to end all of mid-range DSLRs. I wasn’t even considering the D90 until I saw the video my Chase and his crew. Went and tried the D90 at the neighborhood camera shop and was impressed. Fills all my ‘camera requirement boxes’, but not much of a price difference (in Korea) between the Nikon D90 and Canon 50D (50D is US$150 more expensive).

    It would be great to read some input from Chase, his staff or any photographer reading this blog! =)

  191. Scott R. October 10, 2008 at 11:08 am #

    @seoulman: Congrats on entering the digital game. From my perspective, you’re comparing the right two cameras as your jumping off point. These advanced amateur cameras have so many incredible features that you can’t go wrong. You’ll also be happy if you stick with Nikon or Canon as you build your equipment arsenal, as they have both the cutting edge camera technology and the full and ever expanding kits of accessory lenses, flashes, and other exciting gadgets.

    Chase and I have both been using Nikon gear since day one, and believe in the brand. Our cameras have gone to the ends of the earth, and are always at the top of the game and tough enough for whatever comes up.

    Here are my thoughts in terms of comparing the D90 to the 50D. Of late Canon has been making a good run at having the most megapixels at each price point. Nikon has consistently been improving the performance and feature set of cameras with very acceptable resolution. FWIW, 12.1 megapixels will produce a file large enough for an oversized 2 page spread in even the slickest magazines and catalogs. We’ve got 44×55″ prints in our office from 12MP Nikon cameras that look absolutely incredible. Furthermore, the sensor on the Nikon is larger than the Canon, so while the 50D can claim a larger pixel count in the brochures, most pros will argue that it’s not the number of pixels, but the quality of the sensor that makes the big differences in image quality.

    Pixels aside, what really makes the D90 impressive to me is the incredible high ISO performance of this camera. The D3 was the first Nikon to dominate the market in this regard, and all of the Mid-High end SLRs that Nikon has released since have adopted the same amazing capabilities. Check out the sample high ISO shots on the D90 site, you’ll be amazed! This again is a place where I think Canon has bigger numbers via a larger ISO range (100-12800) vs. the Nikon (100-6400), but when you compare the quality, the Nikon is just better.

    And finally, HD Video capability in a camera that sells for under $1000 tips the scales for me. Is seems that you’ve been a photographer for quite some time. I’m sure that you’ve learned that there are things that translate perfectly into still images, and others that require motion to encapsulate the real visual interest of the scene. To have one camera that can toggle between these two types of capture is not just a new feature, it’s an entirely new segment in the market.

    I hope you find this helpful. And most importantly, have fun using your new camera, whichever model it ends up being. Cheers!

  192. seoulman October 11, 2008 at 1:31 pm #

    @scott r.: Just wanted to let you know that I went to the neighborhood camera shop and bought myself the… Nikon D90! Plus a few lenses and accessories! In the end what I did was take pictures with both the D90 and the Canon 50D. Like I said in my earlier post, the sheer number of mega-pixels don’t impress me much. Image quality does and the Nikon’s images in my opinion was better. Moreover, I don’t think I’ll be using an ISO setting over 3200 and image quality of the D90 at IS0 200 and the 50D at ISO 100 were identical. Even at IS0 6400, the D90 images looked better.

    The batteries for my D90 are charging as I type this post. Can’t wait to get out and take some pictures with the D90. Much thanks for taking the time to type such a comprehensive reply to my post! =)

  193. Anonymous November 3, 2008 at 11:26 pm #

    Nice site- thanks for sharing!

  194. Nick November 20, 2008 at 6:16 am #

    Hi Chase,

    this question may be a little off topic, but i wonder…

    i want to upgrade My D40…

    should i be looking for a D90 or a used D200 or D2X?

    A used Pro equipment or a brand new Entry level?

  195. Chase Jarvis November 20, 2008 at 10:10 am #

    nick – the sensor (read: image quality) on the D90 is much better than both the 200 and the 2x. Not even a choice – go the D90 route.

  196. Mark November 20, 2008 at 10:20 am #

    I had the D40x, which I downsized to from a D70 for the size factor (I do a lot of photography hiking). BUT I upgraded to the D90 and one of the other biggest reasons to do so is the fact that you get back into the “real lens” category of camera, which is (I think) important going forward if your serious about photography in any sense.

  197. Anonymous November 25, 2008 at 11:22 pm #

    Chase- Thanks for the review and all the details of this very cool camera.
    What are your thoughts on VR lenses? Do you have favorites? Thanks again. Frank – CA.

  198. Chase Jarvis November 25, 2008 at 11:44 pm #

    @ frank in CA. I use almost all VR lenses, great stuff. Can hand hold really slow shutter speeds… My fav is the Nikkor 70-200 – amazing hunk of glass.

  199. Skunkabilly November 25, 2008 at 11:57 pm #

    Hi Chase,

    You said you use the 18-200 as a scouting lens. Do you have recommendations for a ‘scouting’ type pack? i.e. smallish for maneuvering when scrambling rocks and crowded Asian subways, but sufficient for having my basics covered and comfortable over long distances?

    Ability to carry tripod, water bottle and jacket would be a plus.

    Jeff in CA

  200. Louis Rossouw December 1, 2008 at 7:05 am #

    Sold on this!

    Been using a D70 for years. Time to upgrade to D90 I think.

  201. Orin December 4, 2008 at 12:06 pm #

    Hi Chase et al.
    I just finished watching this video again for the (I Can’t remember how many) time. I like this advertisement video (while I suspect unintentional) you guys made for the D90. It shows a lot of technique that can be used if you’re paying attention. I think Nikon should have had you guys do the D3X announcement with how well you did the one for the D90. I was deliberately trying to avoid the D90 having bought 2 D80′s before the announcement, I might have to reconsider that.

  202. melvin halpito January 16, 2009 at 9:00 pm #

    Hi chase.
    I love your works. And I think this test of yours is amazing.

    My question is.
    As a D3 user, if you have to choose, which one do you choose to work with, D300 or D90?

    Thanx Chase
    Keep rocking, dude!!

  203. Sheryll January 27, 2009 at 7:18 am #

    I have flipped from Canon Rebel to the Nikon D90 and the differences are vast! I am an amateur photog wanting learn how to use this great new tool to its fullest. I don’t have much knowledge how ISO and f-stops/shutter speeds work together (Canon seemed to do it for me) so I am trying to learn this stuff because it seems to be important and needed now. I also am surprised to learn (yes no?) that with the D90 I get to CHOOSE whether I shoot in raw or normal or “both” for even the manual shots. On the Canon, if I set the dial to “P” or “M” or whatever, it shot raw. In auto-shoot of course, it was automatically jpeg. Is there a way to set this up here, or do I need to get used to changing my shooting mode as needed? Thanks for any direction you can give this “old dog” learning new tricks.

  204. markedone March 3, 2009 at 3:25 pm #

    Very amazing!

  205. pressure vessels April 21, 2009 at 11:47 pm #

    I have been using a Nikon user for quite sometime now. I used the Nikon F50, D40, D40x, D60, D100 and my latest is the D90. Its my brother’s once I borrowed it shooting around, I almost dont want to return it back!

    Im planning to buy a DSLR of my own. because all of those cameras i mentioned is not mine. I want one of my own. Now, im in the dilemma of buying the Canon 50D and the Nikon D90 and it seems the D90 has good reviews and as a Nikon user for quite some time, i think Im gonna buy the D90.

    thanks a lot, you have a very good blog.Thanks for all the tips.

    mac

  206. hongyan May 15, 2009 at 7:32 pm #

    Find Nikon D90 battery? Rechargeable Li-ion 7.4V(Compatible with 7.2V) 1500mAh batteries for Nikon D90 are on sale,20% off! Full one year warranty! For more info visit: http://www.nikon-coolpix-replacement-battery.com/d90.htm

  207. hongyan May 15, 2009 at 7:35 pm #

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  208. Anonymous May 23, 2009 at 8:45 am #

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  209. kihhu May 26, 2009 at 7:53 am #

    Maybe they are suppose to be pilots, either way I am excited. I’m glad its not another live video http://rapid4me.com/?q=video

  210. Jay Petermen June 3, 2009 at 7:05 am #

    I currently have the D70s and I've been looking at the D300 and also for a standalone video recorder. I like smaller, light weight cameras so this fits the bill here as well. The killer for me is only having three frame exposure bracketing and the 1/200 flash sync rate. Other than that this camera rocks but those two items may eliminate it for the list.

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    Overall I'm extremely satisfied with the purchase. As others have mentioned, it's not perfect, but it's probably the best available right now in this price range.

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  215. njupe January 17, 2010 at 5:22 pm #

    Hi Chase,

    I'm Fary from jakarta (INDONESIA) i want to ask a little bit question :)

    i want to upgrade My D40x…

    should i be looking for a D90 or D300? why?? ca you explain about quality??

    thanks cj

  216. Mark January 17, 2010 at 5:27 pm #

    D90 and D300S both shoot video. They have the same sensor, but the D300S is much more of a "semi-pro to pro" model. It will shoot 8 FPS vs. the D90's 4. I'd probably go with the D90. (though I have both)

  217. RDP-Promo Affiliate Marketing Blog January 29, 2010 at 6:18 pm #

    I just got a D90, the best camera I've ever owned, my other camera is an Olympus E30. Also just got done watching your entire Web cast of the live photo shoot. Just wanted to say thank you, learned a lot. Can't wait to see the final shots.

  218. Bob January 29, 2010 at 6:24 pm #

    I just got a D90, outstanding camera, my other one is an Olympus E30. Like them both. Watched your entire Live Photo Shoot today, thank you very much for the chance to see how a pro works, it was a learning experience.

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    I’ve recently got a nice deal for Nikon D90 on ebay, with warrabty though a bit used already. Planning to make some similar tests with it.

  221. rapidshare June 18, 2010 at 7:27 am #

    Overall I’m extremely satisfied with the purchase. As others have mentioned, it’s not perfect, but it’s probably the best available right now in this price range.

  222. rapidshare June 23, 2010 at 7:17 am #

    Overall I’m extremely satisfied with the purchase. As others have mentioned, it’s not perfect, but it’s probably the best available right now in this price range.

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    Chase, any word on the D90 replacement? Have you gotten an advanced copy? I hear it will have auto focus in live view, 16MP and improved ISO performance…

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Trackbacks/Pingbacks

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    [...] got call from the Nikon mothership which put the very first HDdSLR–the Nikon D90–into my hands months before the world had seen that technology. I won’t ever forget that experience. That little camera kicked off this whole craze of photo and [...]

  6. [Photography/Reviews] Nikon D7000: Camera Road Test With Chase Jarvis | A u d i o [ By: N i c k ] . com - September 17, 2010

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  8. Nikon 600 - Hands on Review - Whats not to like? | Chase Jarvis Blog - January 7, 2013

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  9. D600 the Affordable full-frame DSLR — What’s the Catch? [Hands on Review] @ Spotofoto - January 7, 2013

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  10. D600 the Affordable full-frame DSLR — What’s the Catch? [Hands on Review] | Chase Jarvis | An information resource for Photographic Studio Lighting Kits and Equipment. |  - January 8, 2013

    [...] use our DSLRs forever. (Check out that vintage video I made to launch Nikon’s first-in-class here) In fact, it was just over a decade ago that the first full frame DSLR was announced (Canon EOS [...]

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