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It seems that Nikon is leading the way in recent technology and has apparently filed for some new patents.

The first one is a  software that will allow the camera to track objects that move in and out of the field of vision. This patent for an “Image Tracking Apparatus” @ freepatentsonline.com explains that the camera will target points along the objects path in order to capture its movements. This I could see would be ideal for sports photographers and wildlife photographers. ESPN or NatGeo anyone?

The next patent was for a camera that can connect to a server and upload photos wirelessly into a ‘storage unit.’ This “Electronic Camera” will make life a whole lot easier for those who just want to click away and have the photos upload somewhere else. I could see photojournalists being able to cover an event and have the photos upload live back at the office. Or even the average bloke who is shooting his kid riding their bike for the fist time around the block and photos go back to the home server. But wait, could this mean less use of memory cards? Although that would be a nice dream, I have a feeling that memory cards (although forever evolving) will be around for a very long time. Yet this does raise the question of how well these things will work. For instance, what will their ranges be? 10 feet? 30 meters? 5 blocks? Will it run on WiFi or 3G? Also, how reliable could it be to transfer ALL the photos that we take. I’m sure Joe Schmlo wouldn’t mind that one or two photos of his ‘sick’ 1985 T-Bird went missing, but Derek who works for AP Wire cannot afford to have the Super Bowl Winning touchdown go kaput.

As always, feel free to comment or post any other rumor you have found.

For those looking for a quick sale, Adorama.com has refurbished Nikons a lot cheaper than normal price.

Refurbished D60 for $350

Refurbished D3000 Kit with 4GB SD memory card, Spare EN-EL9 Lithium-Ion rechargeable battery and a Camera Bag for $405

Refurbished D90 for $690

Refurbished D300 for $1200

Refurbished D3 for $4000

Not too bad. Comment if you found any other deals and share the wealth.

In this post, I am going to review the pros and cons of the Nikon D3000. This was my first DSLR that I bought for myself and I have had it for about 6 months and have used it for almost every purpose from journalistic work, to sports photography, to portraits and personal artistic shots. At the end of this post, I will post some shots I took with the D3000.

Lets start with the cons (cause it is so easy to boast about something first and I figured we can change it up. If you just want to read the Pros, scroll down.) Although there aren’t really that many cons, but some of them could deter perspective buyers.

  • The body is made out of mostly plastic, but I have yet to see any real problem with it. I am sure, though, that if I drop it, I will have a few heart attacks before it hits the floor. I’m not sure how well it will hold up against a 3 or 4 foot fall.
  • Also, the lack of an autofocus motor is a big hassle when it comes to picking and choosing the right lens for your camera, especially if you are looking to upgrade into the more professional lenses — making some a few hundred dollars more expensive (for more information on compatible lenses for the D3000 visit my ‘What will Autofocus on the lower end Nikons?’ post.)
  • Another annoyance I found was the lack of a an adjustment screen on the top of the body next to the settings knob. When you are working professionally, to have to keep on activating the LCD screen to make adjustments is a little tedious, and also drains the battery.
  • As we know, the D3000 has a 3 frames per second burst but does not live up to my picky standards. For one, I noticed that there is a lag after shooting about 10 frames due to the writing speed of the camera (this also could also be affected by the speed of your memory card). Secondly, the burst keeps the focus point of the first shot, so if the object you are shooting comes closer to the camera it will come out blurry.
  • One of the raved additions to the D3000 is the new GUIDE mode  in which one can tell the camera to “Soften the Background” or “Shoot Close Ups” and will give hints as to how to do it (to check out a little tutorial on the the GUIDE mode, check out the Nikon site for the D3000). I think that if your going to buy a camera for someone who is going to just use the GUIDE mode, then you might as well get them a Point and Shoot. Although I would argue against myself that this is a nice mode for learning students who forgot how to stop motion or blur movement (I guess I am just being pompous and wish I would have saved a bit of cash in exchange for this program.) So if you already know the basics of shutter speed, aperture and ISO, this will be of no use.
  • The ISO is good up to 400 and then you can start seeing noise in 800 and is really noisy at 1600. HI-1 is just ridiculous. If you are shooting for a magazine, this is not good. The D60 has a better ISO sensor and a lot less noise than the D3000. Below are some photo examples of the ISO range of the D3000 (click to enlarge). You can really see the difference in the cover of Paradise Lost and the Counter-Strike box:

Not too many cons right? Now onto the Pros. This camera is probably the most versatile of the entry level DSLRs and will give you the most bang for your buck.

  • The body feels solid when you hold it and is easy to grip with your right hand, allowing you to fiddle around with the lens or menu.
  • A 3″ LCD screen gives you more view than the D60’s 2.5″.
  • You have full function of the camera, from ISO, to shutter speed, to aperture.
  • It is very easy to access the menu during MANUAL mode for quick adjustments when needed.
  • Shutter speed and aperture can be adjusted by one hand.
  • Max shutter speed is 1/4000 sec, great for sports.
  • The color of the images are very vivid and saturated, especially the greens and blues.
  • The camera wakes from sleep mode in fractions of a second.
  • Battery life is noticeably quite long. 500 shots per charge as according to Nikon’s Tech Specs for the D3000, though I have gone a full week without charging it.
  • An 11 point focus system that you can adjust.
  • New modes such as Portrait and Child mode add versatility.
  • Camera also shoots in RAW for those who like to edit.
  • A 10.2 megapixel sensor that cranks out photos that you can print up to 8×12 inch photos before you notice some blur on the edges, and that is looking close up.
  • You can find this camera with the standard 18-55mm lens kit for around $500. If you really search around you can get it for a lot less, too. I got mine on Black Friday for $430 — $120 less than the suggested retail price.

All in all, for the price and settings of this camera, I give it a strong B+.

Now for some examples of photos that I took. I didn’t make any adjustments to the photos, they are as they came out of the camera. As always, click to enlarge. Enjoy.

Hey Ya’ll! This is Chris working his way up the digital media world! I also have Tumblr account that you guys can watch and follow @ chrisat0m.tumblr.com. I made that a few months ago and haven’t really gotten into the whole ‘Tumblr’ thing but hopefully this will be a little more entertaining. I will plan to post as many photos and info on digital photography I can find. Just a heads up, I’m a Nikon guy, but I do know a bit of Canon as one must ‘Know Thine Enemy.’ If you have any questions or comments on any of my posts, please feel free to comment; this is a free world wide web (for the most part) and knowledge should be shared (especially if someone more knowledgeable happens to wander around). Happy shooting and enjoy!

A topic that seems to have photographers with lower end Nikon cameras (like myself) scrambling to find the truth about is which lenses will be able to autofocus on the Nikon D40s, D60s, D3000s and the D5000s? Well after much research (and even emailing Nikon USA with a few questions) I finally was able to find out the final truth.

The short and simple answer is that a AF lenses WILL NOT autofocus on the lower end cameras. The focus motor has been taken out of the bodies to make them lighter and obviously cheaper. In the cameras with the AF motor inside the body, there is a visible Autofocus Screw on the camera ring. (Click to see larger)

And in turn, in AF lenses there is a port where the AF Screw fits into in order to AF the lens.

In order to obtain AF with the lower end cameras, a lens MUST be AF-S or AF-I. Too bad that extra letter adds upwards of $200 or more to the prices of these lenses. But hey, we got into digital film knowing that this wasn’t going to be cheap. If you are looking (or needing) to snag one of these AF-S or AF-I lenses for cheap, surf eBay, Amazon and Adorama for the best deals and play them against each other so to say and find the best deal. Word of advice though, if you think the prices aren’t going to change, wait a few weeks and they will likely drop a bit.