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By 5 April 2011 | Categories: news

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Nikon has announced its new D5100, the follow-up to its successful D5000 and a competitor to Canon’s new 600D dSLR.  
 
Some of the improvements on the D5100 include a larger 3” vari-angle screen and a 16.2 megapixel CMOS imaging sensor inherited from the D7000. This compared to the D5000’s 2.7” display and 12.3 MP sensor, and the Canon 600D’s 3” vari-angle display and 18 MP sensor. Nikon also added a new special effects mode and full (1080p) HD Movie with full-time autofocus, while at the same time slightly toning down on the size of the new model, measuring 128 x 97 x 79 mm.
 
Vari-angle screen  
 
Designed to enhance the shooting experience, the Nikon D5100 includes an impressive new 3” 921 000-dot Vari-angle LCD screen that now opens horizontally for greater manoeuvrability, even when using a tripod. This freedom of movement adds to the functionality of using Live View, allowing shooting from virtually any angle.
 
 
In-camera effects
 
The 16.2 megapixel D5100 is also the first Nikon digital SLR to provide in-camera effects that can be applied to photos and movies, putting more tools of creative expression at the user’s fingertips. The range of seven effects include selective colour, where you select up to three colours to appear in the still or movie while other areas are monochrome, and miniature effect, which makes an image appear like a view of miniature scale (already seen on compact cameras such as the Canon Ixus 210). Users can select which special effect to shoot in and these are directly accessible via the mode dial on the top of the camera.
 
In addition to the Effects mode, users can create photos with solid tonal range by selecting the high dynamic range (HDR) function within the camera. With this selected, the D5100 will automatically expose two consecutive images in rapid succession – one over and one underexposed up to 3EV stops to produce a finished photo with an amazing range of mid-tones and highlights that wouldn’t otherwise be possible in a single shot. Additionally, Active D-Lighting can be selected by itself or combined with HDR for an even more dramatic effect.
 
 
Stunning HD movies
 
The Nikon D5100 captures 1080p full HD movies with full-time auto-focus and manual exposure control. Users can quickly switch focus modes to stay with the action through a variety of AF functions, including face priority which can track up to 35 human faces, subject-tracking and normal or wide-area auto-focus. To activate D-Movie mode and Live-view, a new switch is ergonomically located on the top of the camera near the shutter button for easy access.
 
The D5100 dSLR offers variable frame rates and resolutions for movies, and can record 1080p at a cinema-like 24 or 30 fps, or a web-friendly 720p resolution at either 24 or 30 fps for up to 20 minutes per clip, in the AVC-HD H.264 codec. Once recorded, movie clips can be edited and trimmed in the camera to save time in post-production. Whether utilising a wireless or hot-shoe mounted microphone such as the new ME-1, sound can be recorded via the stereo microphone input for professional audio results.  Captured movies can be easily shared using the HDMI output, and controlled remotely with HDMI CEC compatibility.
 
The new D-Movie button and Live-View switch               
 
Superior Image Quality
 
The D5100 utilises Nikon’s exclusive Scene Recognition System to analyse subject information from a database containing more than 30 000 images to optimise focus, exposure, i-TTL flash exposure and white balance. The Scene Recognition System reads data from the 420-pixel 3D Colour Matrix Meter RGB sensor that examines the scene’s brightness and colour data then optimises the camera’s performance prior to the actual exposure. 
 
Nikon’s exclusive EXPEED2 image processing engine drives the quick 11-point AF system on the D5100 to provide rapid focus acquisition even on fast moving subjects. When shooting action, split second shutter response and four frames per second burst rate make sure no moment is missed.
 
Romi Jacobs, chief brand officer for Nikon in South Africa, says: “The D5100 is a great camera that allows you to express your artistic side through impressive images and movies. You can shoot with creative effects and unique angles, all at the level of superior image quality seen in the D7000!” 
 
The Nikon D5100 should be in SA stores from the 21st of April. The retail prices are as follows:
Body only: from R7999.
Body with single lens 18 – 55 mm: from R8999.
Body with twin lens 18 – 55 mm and 55 – 200 mm: from R9999.
 
 Key features of the Nikon D5100:
 
 • Vari-angle LCD monitor: View life at a unique angle with high resolution 921k dot wide-viewing angle screen 
• Live View with AF modes: Live View is a straight-forward way of taking pictures and AF modes keep the subject in focus  
• Special effects mode: New to the dSLR range, effects including selective colour and miniature effect for more creative expression when taking stills or movies 
• DX-format, 16.2 megapixel CMOS image sensor with EXPEED 2: Inherited from the D7000 for exceptional quality even in poor lighting conditions 
• High ISO (100-6400) extendable to Hi 2 (ISO 25600 equivalent): Keeps the detail with low noise in low-light situations 
• D-Movie: Full (1080p) HD movies can be taken at up to 30fps. Simple edits can be made in-camera and movies can be watched on HDTV using the HDMI connectivity  
• High dynamic range (HDR): Gives detailed shots of high-contrast scenes by combining two shots taken within a single shutter release 
• Active D-Lighting: Retains details in highlights and shadows for well-balanced images, even if the subject is moving 
• Continuous shooting at 4 fps: You will not miss that all important fast-moving action shot 
• Retouch menu: Gives a range of post editing effects in-camera including movie edits and image resizing 
• Picture controls: Lets you set the look and mood of your images before you shoot. Choose from six settings: Standard, Vivid, Neutral, Monochrome, Portrait and Landscape 
• Scene modes: Automatically adjusts camera settings, including Picture Controls and Active D-Lighting, for optimal results. Sample photos appear on the display to help select the right mode  
• Front and back infrared receivers: ensure maximum usability of the optional ML-L3 remote control when taking self-portraits or close-ups  
• GPS compatible: Records the exact location of the camera when a picture is taken by using the optional GP-1 unit 
• Dual integrated dust reduction system: Image Sensor Cleaning and Airflow Control systems keep dust away from the camera’s image sensor for clear, spot-free images 
• Stereo sound: Designed specifically for dSLRs, Nikon’s optional Stereo Microphone, ME-1, lets you record movie clips in high-quality stereo sound, with no AF noise. Comes with windscreen and soft case accessories.
 

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