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2008.08.27

Nikon’s new D90 becomes the world’s first DSLR with movie-recording capability. Specifically, the D90 can record up to 5 minutes of 720p HD-quality video with mono sound. This makes the D90 one of the most unique DSLR cameras available, at least starting in this fall when it ships.

As a modern DSLR, the D90 boasts a 12 megapixels cropped-sensor with 1.5X multiplier, similar to the higher-end D300. Its normal ISO range is from 200 to 3200 with boosted range from ISO 100 to 6400. The D90 shoots continuously at 4.5 FPS too. Basically the D90 is a D80 with technology inherited from the D300 plus movie-mode. Another great hand-me-down from the D300 is a VGA-resolution 3″ LCD (920K pixels).

The high-definition movie mode enables a single camera to produce very high quality images and movies. Although this camera’s movie capability will not match that of dedicated high-end movie-recording equipment, it will benefit from interchangeable lenses, preset white-balance and exposure-compensation, unlike most movie-recording digital cameras. The output resolution is a respectable 1280×720 @ 24 FPS, which is the second highest progressive HDTV resolution.

With the recent appearance of live-view on numerous DSLR cameras, the technological advancement is quite small but recording the live-view stream can be incredibly useful for those wanting to record the occasional video while being able to take high-quality photographs.

Along with the D90, Nikon has also launched the AF-S DX Nikkor 18-105mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR zoom lens with built-in silent wave motor and vibration reduction. This is a 27-157mm equivalent lens going from a wide-angle to a short-range telephoto.

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