Nikon D780 FX-Format DSLR: Pro-Level Features

Nikon D780 FX-Format DSLR: Pro-Level Features

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Nikon D780

Melville, NY—Nikon Inc. unveiled the Nikon D780 at CES 2020 in Las Vegas. The new FX-format DSLR provides vast improvements to the D750—Nikon’s most popular full-frame DSLR ever. Moreover, the D780 inherits pro-level features from the D850 and current flagship D5 DSLRs.

The D780, for enthusiasts and professionals, is an agile camera that captures high-resolution photos and 4K UHD video with the added benefit of phase-detection autofocusing. Furthermore, retaining the rugged build of its predecessor, the camera is turbocharged with Nikon’s latest Expeed 6 image processor; touch operability; advanced autofocus capabilities; added video features; and an assortment of in-camera creative options.

Nikon D780

“The Nikon D780 is not only a huge leap in technology over the D750, but it also integrates Nikon’s latest cutting-edge technologies to offer the best video feature set and imaging capabilities in a full-frame DSLR,” said Jay Vannatter, executive vice president of Nikon Inc. “A demand exists for a successor to the D750, which offers the unbeatable combination of versatility, image quality and value.”

Nikon D780 Specs

The D780 also incorporates some of the features seen in Nikon’s mirrorless Z series. It is a seriously capable camera and “offers the distinct advantage of being comfortable in the hands of a photo enthusiast as well as being a popular pro-grade tool for weddings, wildlife and production environments,” Vannatter added.

The DSLR offers a balance between resolution and file size; it employs a 24.5-megapixel backside-illuminated (BSI) FX-format CMOS sensor. The sensor is engineered to deliver high dynamic range and accurate color reproduction. Moreover, the same Expeed 6 processor found in the Nikon Z 6 and Z 7 allows for increased speed. In addition to better energy efficiency, the processor also delivers improved low-light performance and 4K UHD full-frame video with full pixel readout.

Nikon D780

What’s more, the D780’s low-light ability makes is a serious option for capturing wedding receptions and nighttime photography; it produces clean files with minimal noise. The camera also has improved ISO performance across the entire range, which now goes up to 51,200 and is expandable to 204,800.

In addition, to keep pace with fast action, it shoots at speeds of up to 7 frames per sec at full resolution; it also has shutter speeds as fast as 1/8,000 for as long as 900 seconds.

Another feature is the benefit of operating the electronic shutter in live view; the D780 shoots continuously without shutter noise at up to 12 fps. This feature is particularly beneficial when documenting sensitive moments like a live performance, a wedding ceremony or discrete street photography.

AF Performance Upgrades

In addition, when shooting through the optical viewfinder (OVF), Nikon’s 51-point AF system paired with an enhanced AF algorithm inherited from the D5; 15 cross-type AF sensors maximize accuracy. Further, the camera uses an upgraded 180K-pixel advanced scene recognition system to ensure balanced exposures and accurate color reproduction. The AF system can track rapidly moving subjects such as wildlife; it also improves on the ability to focus in challenging light, to -4 EV in this mode.

Moreover, for the first time in a Nikon DSLR, the D780 is infused with mirrorless technology. It features the same 273-point focal plane hybrid AF system employed in the Nikon Z 6. The system provides coverage of approximately 90% of the frame. It now also achieves fast, smooth and accurate AF in live view and when recording video. And this is also Nikon’s first DSLR to feature eye detection AF, which enables real-time tracking of multiple eyes in a scene.

D780 Video Features

Beyond still capture, the D780 is capable of similar video capture functions of the Nikon Z 6. It records full-frame 4K UHD video at 30 fps with full-pixel readout. A variety of other frame rates and resolutions are also selectable. They include Full HD/120p for smooth motion in videos and slow-motion capture.

Also, the camera offers 10-bit output with N-Log or HDR (Hybrid Log Gamma) support. Other video features include focus peaking, highlight display (zebra stripes), interval timer and in-camera time-lapse movie file recording.

Additional Creative Features

With various in-camera creative picture controls and a special effects mode, the D780 lets users add elements of personal flare to their photos and videos. Many of the special effects are captured as a JPEG while simultaneously shooting an unaffected RAW image.

Furthermore, its focus shift feature will appeal to macro, product and landscape photographers seeking extreme depth of field. The photographer can capture a series of shots at different focus distances and use third-party software to generate a highly defined image consisting of only the areas in focus.

Nikon D780

What’s more, new in the D780 is the ability to create a multiple exposure with nonconsecutively shot images. Photographers can superimpose images in-camera, even when captured from two entirely different locations and times.

Other features include: sharing to a smart device via the Nikon SnapBridge app using the camera’s built-in Wi-Fi and Bluetooth; a tilting, 3.2-inch LCD with touch operability; weather sealing; the ability to capture 2,260 shots on single charge; USB Type-C compatibility; and two UHS-II SD card slots.

The Nikon D780 has a suggested retail price of $2,299.95 body only and $2,799.95 when kitted with the AF-S Nikkor 24–120mm f/4G ED VR lens.