Nikon D600 Quick Hands on Impression

So Nikon has finally announced the Nikon D600 DSLR camera, the smallest full frame DSLR camera Nikon has ever made. It’s the first full frame DSLR that is targeting the consumer market as well as professional users.

We had a quick play with a sample D600 and let us share with you some of our first impressions. Unfortunately we were not allowed to show you photos of/from the camera, but we’ll be doing a more in-depth review with a production model very soon.

When we saw and hold the D600 in our hands, the first impression was, it’s very similar to a D7000! If it’s not the FX badge and the D600 logo at the front , we would have mistaken it as a D7000! It’s slightly bigger, and heavier than a D7000, but not by much. And when we put it side by side with a D800, the D800 is obviously bigger, taller and heavier.

The D600 has a full frame 24 megapixel sensor. The ISO range is from 100 – 6400 (native, expandable to 50-25600). The D600 can do 5.5fps at full resolution without any external aid. While we did not test it’s dynamic range in
this preview, we’ve took a few photos at high ISOs from 6400 up to max 25600 and the result looks pretty impressive. At ISO 6400, the amount of noise is still keep at reasonable level and there is still a good amount of fine details in the photo. We’ll do a more detailed comparison when we are doing the full review, but in the mean time, we can tell you you wouldn’t be disappointed if you want a camera that can shoot under low light. It’s not a D4, but the high performance should be at least as good as a D700.

The D600’s autofocus system is basically the same as the D7000’s AF system. It has 39 AF point with 9 of them are cross type and seven of them can focus at f/8. Like all the Nikon FX camera, all the focus points are within the central DX crop area.

The metering system is the same 3D color matrix metering II 2,016 pixel RGB sensor as the D7000 as well.

It’s obvious Nikon wants to sell this camera to a lot of consumer users who’s upgrading from a DX camera, but the D600 also has a (partly?) magnesium metal body. And I was told the weather seal is same as the D800, and the shutter rating is 150,000 so professional photographers should still be happy to use it as their work camera and take it anywhere, and shoot it under any weather condition.

The D600 also shares a lot of improvements and new features with it’s bigger brother, the 36MP FX D800. For example, the LCD screen is same as the D800, it uses the same Expeed 3 processor, it has very similar video mode including
uncompressed HDMI output, headphone out, external mic in and 1080p30 mode…etc

We noticed there are infra red sensors on the camera, so that means you can use a cheap infra red remote trigger to trigger this camera. This is something we haven’t see on a higher end Nikon DSLR before. In additional to that, you can use the optional wifi module and control it with an Android or iOS device.

The camera is pretty responsive, just like the D800 or D4, probably because of the Expeed3 processor. Shutter sound is more quiet than the D800 or D4.

And for those of you who care about how the camera look, I personally think it’s a very good looking camera. It’s not too boxy nor too curvy, and with a medium sized lens attached, it looks and feels very nice and balanced .

So right now, we are pretty impressed by this latest full frame camera, and we’ll be giving you a full review once we got our hands on a production model.

The D600 will be available locally (New Zealand) around end of next week.
Retail price is expected to be around mid $3k NZD

For more information of the Nikon D600, please go to Nikon NZ website:

http://www.nikon.co.nz/productitem.php?pid=1528-606ea4f9d2