10 February 2015

Nikon unveils the D810a, a modified D810 designed for astrophotography

Today Nikon unveiled a new version of the D810, the D810a. This new D810a DSLR camera is designed specifically for astrophotography. Canon has always been the brand for astrophotographers (they have a solid reputation in that field and have had a specific camera for a while now, the EOS 60Da), but now Nikon shooters have a very good option as well, and with 36MP quality!

Full specifications

TypeSingle-lens reflex digital camera
Lens mountNikon F mount (with AF coupling and AF contacts)
Effective angle of viewNikon FX format
Image sensorFX, 35.9 mm x 24.0 mm, CMOS
Total pixels37.09 million
Dust-reduction systemImage sensor cleaning, Image Dust Off reference data (requires Capture NX-D software)
Effective pixels36.3 million
Image size (pixels)1FX format (36 x 24), (L) 7360 x 4912, (M) 5520 x 3680, (S) 3680 x 2456, 1.2 x (30 x 20), (L) 6144 x 4080, (M) 4608 x 3056, (S) 3072 x 2040, DX format (24 x 16), (L) 4800 x 3200, (M) 3600 x 2400, (S) 2400 x 1600, 5:4 (30 x 24), (L) 6144 x 4912, (M) 4608 x 3680, (S) 3072 x 2456, FX-format photographs taken in movie live view, (L) 6720 x 3776, (M) 5040 x 2832, (S) 3360 x 1888, DX-format photographs taken in movie live view, (L) 4800 x 2704, (M) 3600 x 2024, (S) 2400 x 1352
Storage file formatsNEF (RAW): 12 or 14 bit, lossless compressed, compressed or uncompressed; small size available (12-bit uncompressed only), TIFF (RGB), JPEG: JPEG-Baseline compliant with fine (approx. 1:4), normal (approx. 1:8) or basic (approx. 1:16) compression (Size priority); optimal quality compression available, NEF (RAW)+JPEG: Single photograph recorded in both NEF (RAW) and JPEG formats
Picture Control SystemStandard, Neutral, Vivid, Monochrome, Portrait, Landscape, Flat, Selected Picture Control can be modified; storage for custom Picture Controls
Storage mediaCompactFlash (CF) (Type I, UDMA compliant), SD, SDHC (UHS-I compliant), SDXC (UHS-I compliant)
Dual card slot1 CompactFlash (CF) card and 1 Secure Digital (SD) card, either card can be used for primary or backup storage or for separate storage of NEF (RAW) and JPEG images; pictures can be copied between cards
File systemDCF 2.0, DPOF, Exif 2.3, PictBridge
ViewfinderEye-level pentaprism single-lens reflex viewfinder
Frame coverageFX (36 x 24): Approx. 100% horizontal and 100% vertical, 1.2x (30 x 20): Approx. 97% horizontal and 97% vertical, DX (24 x 16): Approx. 97% horizontal and 97% vertical, 5:4 (30 x 24): Approx. 97% horizontal and 100% vertical
MagnificationApprox. 0.7x (50 mm f/1.4 lens at infinity, -1.0 m-¹)
Eyepoint17 mm (-1.0 m-¹; from center surface of viewfinder eyepiece lens)
Diopter adjustment-3 to +1 m-¹
Focusing screenType B BriteView Clear Matte Mark VIII screen with AF area brackets and framing grid
Depth-of-field previewYes, pressing Pv button stops lens aperture down to value selected by user (A, M and M* modes) or by camera (P and S modes)
Lens apertureInstant return, electronically controlled
Compatible lensesCompatible with AF NIKKOR lenses, including type G, E, and D lenses (some restrictions apply to PC lenses), DX lenses (using DX (24 x 16) 1.5x image area), AI-P NIKKOR lenses, and non-CPU AI lenses (exposure modes A, M and M* only); IX-NIKKOR lenses, lenses for the F3AF, and non-AI lenses cannot be used: The electronic rangefinder can be used with lenses that have a maximum aperture of f/5.6 or faster (the electronic rangefinder supports the 11 focus points with lenses that have a maximum aperture of f/8 or faster)
Shutter typeElectronically controlled vertical-travel focal-plane mechanical shutter, electronic front-curtain shutter (in mirror-up release mode)
Shutter speed1/8000 to 30 s, in steps of 1/3, 1/2 or 1 EV, bulb, time, X250. M* mode: 4, 5, 8, 10, 15, 20, 30, 60, 120, 180, 240, 300, 600 or 900 seconds shutter speed, and bulb and time settings are available
Flash sync speedX = 1/250 s, ; synchronizes with shutter at 1/320 s or slower (flash range drops at speeds between 1/250 and 1/320 s)
Release modeS (single frame), CL (continuous low speed), CH (continuous high speed), Q (quiet shutter-release), Self-timer, MUP (mirror up), Qc (quiet continuous shutter-release)
Frame advance rateWith EN-EL15 batteries (FX/5:4) CL: Approx. 1 to 5 fps, CH: Approx. 5 fps, Qc: Approx. 3 fps; (DX/1.2x) CL: Approx. 1 to 6 fps, CH: Approx. 6 fps, Qc: Approx. 3 fps Other power sources (FX/5:4) CL: Approx. 1 to 5 fps, CH: Approx. 5 fps, Qc: Approx. 3 fps; (1.2x) CL: Approx. 1 to 6 fps, CH: Approx. 6 fps, Qc: Approx. 3 fps; (DX) CL: Approx. 1 to 6 fps, CH: Approx. 7 fps, Qc: Approx. 3 fps
Self-timer2 s, 5 s, 10 s, 20 s; 1 to 9 exposures at intervals of 0.5, 1, 2 or 3 s
Metering methodMatrix: 3D color matrix metering III (type G, E and D lenses); color matrix metering III (other CPU lenses); color matrix metering available with non-CPU lenses if user provides lens data Center-weighted: Weight of approx. 75% given to 12-mm circle in center of frame; diameter of circle can be changed to 8, 15 or 20 mm, or weighting can be based on average of entire frame (non-CPU lenses use 12-mm circle) Spot: Meters 4-mm circle (about 1.5% of frame) centered on selected focus point (on center focus point when non-CPU lens is used) Highlight-weighted: Available with type G, E and D lenses (equivalent to center-weighted when other lenses are used)
Metering range (ISO 100, f/1.4 lens, 20 °C/68 °F)Matrix, center-weighted, or highlight-weighted metering : 0 to 20 EV Spot metering: 2 to 20 EV
Exposure meter couplingCPU, AI
ModeProgrammed auto with flexible program (P); shutter-priority auto (S); aperture-priority auto (A); manual (M); Long-exposure manual (M*) mode
Exposure compensation-5 to +5 EV, in steps of 1/3, 1/2, or 1 EV
Exposure bracketing2 to 9 frames, in steps of 1/3, 1/2, 2/3, or 1 EV, 2 to 5 frames in steps of 2 or 3 EV
Exposure lockLuminosity locked at detected value with AE-L/AF-L button
ISO sensitivityISO 200 to 12800, in steps of 1/3, 1/2, or 1 EV, Can also be set to approx. 0.3, 0.5, 0.7 or 1 EV (ISO 100 equivalent) below ISO 200 or to approx. 0.3, 0.5, 0.7, 1 or 2 EV (ISO 51200 equivalent) above ISO 12800; auto ISO sensitivity control available
Active D-LightingCan be selected from auto, extra high, high, normal, low or off
ADL bracketing2 frames using selected value for one frame or 3 to 5 frames using preset values for all frames
AutofocusNikon Advanced Multi-CAM 3500FX autofocus sensor module with TTL phase detection, fine-tuning, 51 focus points (including 15 cross-type sensors; f/8 supported by 11 sensors), and AF-assist illuminator (range approx. 0.5 to 3 m/1 ft 8 in. to 9 ft 10 in.)
Detection range-2 to +19 EV (ISO 100 equivalent, 20 °C/68 °F)
Lens servoSingle-servo AF (AF-S), Continuous-servo AF (AF-C), predictive focus tracking automatically activated according to subject status, Manual focus (M): Electronic rangefinder can be used
Focus pointsCan be selected from 51 or 11 focus points
AF-area modeSingle-point AF, 9-, 21- or 51-point Dynamic-area AF, 3D-tracking, Group-area AF, Auto-area AF
Focus lockFocus can be locked by pressing shutter-release button halfway (single-servo AF) or by pressing AE-L/AF-L button
Built-in flashManual pop-up with button release
Guide NumberApprox. 12/39, 12/39 with manual flash (m/ft, ISO 100, 20 °C/68 °F)
Flash controlTTL: i-TTL flash control using 91K-pixel RGB sensor is available with built-in flash; i-TTL balanced fill-flash for digital SLR is used with matrix, center-weighted, and highlight-weighted metering, standard i-TTL flash for digital SLR with spot metering
Flash modesFront-curtain sync, slow sync, rear-curtain sync, red-eye reduction, red-eye reduction with slow sync, slow rear-curtain sync, off; auto FP high-speed sync supported
Flash compensation-3 to +1 EV in steps of 1/3, 1/2 or 1 EV
Flash bracketing2 to 9 frames in steps of 1/3, 1/2, 2/3 or 1 EV, 2 to 5 frames in steps of 2 or 3 EV
Flash-ready indicatorLights when built-in flash or optional flash unit is fully charged; blinks after flash is fired at full output
Accessory shoeISO 518 hot-shoe with sync and data contacts and safety lock
Nikon Creative Lighting SystemNikon CLS supported; commander mode option available
Sync terminalISO 519 sync terminal with locking thread
White balanceAuto (2 types), incandescent, fluorescent (7 types), direct sunlight, flash, cloudy, shade, preset manual (up to 6 values can be stored, spot white balance measurement available during live view), choose color temperature (2500 K to 10000 K); all with fine-tuning
White balance bracketing2 to 9 frames in steps of 1, 2 or 3
Live View - ModesLive view photography (still images), Movie live view (movies)
Live view - lens servoAutofocus (AF): Single-servo AF (AF-S); full-time servo AF (AF-F) Manual focus (M)
Live view - AF-area modeFace-priority AF, Wide-area AF, Normal-area AF, Subject-tracking AF
Live view - autofocusContrast-detect AF anywhere in frame (camera selects focus point automatically when face-priority AF or subject-tracking AF is selected)
Movie - meteringTTL exposure metering using main image sensor
Movie - metering methodMatrix, center-weighted, or highlight-weighted
Movie - frame size (pixels) and frame rate1920 x 1080, 60p (progressive), 50p, 30p, 25p, 24p, 1280 x 720, 60p, 50p, Actual frame rates for 60p, 50p, 30p, 25p, and 24p are 59.94, 50, 29.97, 25, and 23.976 fps respectively; all options support both high and normal image quality
Movie - file formatMOV
Movie - video compressionH.264/MPEG-4 Advanced Video Coding
Movie - audio recording formatLinear PCM
Movie - audio recording deviceBuilt-in or external stereo microphone; sensitivity adjustable
Movie - ISO sensitivityExposure modes P, S and A: Auto ISO sensitivity control (ISO 200 to Hi 2) with selectable upper limit, Exposure mode M and M*: Auto ISO sensitivity control (ISO 200 to Hi 2) available with selectable upper limit; manual selection (ISO 200 to 12800 in steps of 1/3, 1/2, or 1 EV); can also be set to approx. 0.3, 0.5, 0.7, 1, or 2 EV (ISO 51200 equivalent) above ISO 12800
Monitor8 cm (3.2–in.) diagonal, Approx. 1229k-dot, (VGA; 640 x RGBW x 480 = 1,228,800 dots) TFT monitor with 170° viewing angle, approx. 100% frame coverage, and brightness adjustment
PlaybackFull-frame and thumbnail (4, 9 or 72 images) playback with playback zoom, movie playback, photo and/or movie slide shows, histogram display, highlights, photo information, location data display, auto image rotation
USBSuperSpeed USB (USB 3.0 Micro-B connector), connection to built-in USB port is recommended
HDMI outputType C HDMI connector
Audio inputStereo mini-pin jack (3.5-mm diameter; plug-in power supported)
Audio outputStereo mini-pin jack (3.5-mm diameter)
Supported languagesArabic, Bengali, Bulgarian, Chinese (Simplified and Traditional), Czech, Danish, Dutch, English, Finnish, French, German, Greek, Hindi, Hungarian, Indonesian, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Marathi, Norwegian, Persian, Polish, Portuguese (Portugal and Brazil), Romanian, Russian, Serbian, Spanish, Swedish, Tamil, Telugu, Thai, Turkish, Ukrainian, Vietnamese
BatteryOne EN-EL15 Rechargeable Li-ion Battery
Battery packOptional MB-D12 Multi-Power Battery Pack with one EN-EL15/EN-EL18a2/EN-EL182 Rechargeable Li-ion Battery or eight R6/AA-size alkaline, Ni-MH or lithium batteries
AC adapterEH-5b AC Adapter; requires EP-5B Power Connector (available separately)
Tripod socket1/4–in. (ISO 1222)
Dimensions (W x H x D)Approx. 146 x 123 x 81.5 mm (5.8 x 4.9 x 3.3 in.)
WeightApprox. 980 g (2 lb 2.6 oz, with battery and SD memory card but without body cap), Approx. 880 g/1 lb 15.1 oz (camera body only)
Operating environment - temperature0 to 40 °C/32 to 104 °F
Operating environment - humidity85% or less (no condensation)
Supplied accessoriesEN-EL15 Rechargeable Li-ion Battery, MH-25a Battery Charger, UC-E22 USB Cable, AN-DC16 Camera Strap, BF-1B Body Cap, DK-17 Eyepiece, USB Cable Clip, HDMI Cable Clip, BM-12 LCD Monitor Cover
Notes:
  1. Photographs taken in movie live view have an aspect ratio of 16:9; a DX-based format is used for photographs taken using the DX (24 x 16) 1.5x image area; an FX-based format is used for all other photographs.
  2. Available separately; requires optional BL-5 Battery Chamber Cover.

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