Nikon D1x Review

For the opportunity Nikon D1x body camera review Many thanks to Boris (Central Committee of Vlksm).

Nikon D1x Review

Nikon D1x Review

Nikon D1x Is a very old, flagship professional camera. You can see on my plate what place it occupies among all the central control rooms Nikon. The performance of the camera is one of the lowest among the entire Nikon CZK line, you can see for yourself in Nikon performance section.

Nikon D1x - rear view

Nikon D1x - Back View

Nikon D1x was released back in 2001 along with another flagship camera Nikon D1H. Please note that externally the Nikon D1 cameras, D1h, D1x are completely identical (except for the inscription of the name of the camera) and are built on the basis of the same body, therefore, it will be difficult to feel the difference in control and ergonomics.

Photo at Nikon D1x

Photo at Nikon D1x

D1x uses very unusual CCD sensor on 5.33 million effective pixels. This allows you to get a photo of 3008 in 1960, which is equal to 5.9MP. The matrix feature is that its real physical parameters are 4028 by 1324 pixels (5.33MP, with approximately proportions 1 to 4, not 2 to 3) The number of pixels placed horizontally remains the same as the Nikon D1, D1h (1324 pixels), but the number of pixels in width has doubled on the matrix, up to 4028 pixels. At the same time, the physical dimensions of the matrices of Nikon D1, D1h, D1x are the same. This is very unusual matrix structurein order for the camera to produce a normal image with an aspect ratio of 2: 3, you need to use a special interpolation algorithm that 'decompresses' the image. Considering that the matrix already has a Bayer subpixel structure, Nikon took some risk of degrading the image detail with such a sensor structure. In fact, this type of sensor doesn't 'feel' at all when shooting. For those who find 5.33MP small, I recommend my article Battle of Megapixels... Nikon D1x is the only camera with such a sensor. It's a pity that the technology was not upgraded, it would be interesting to shoot a matrix with such a pixel structure at 18MP.

Attention: cameras with new firmware can save image sizes 4011 by 2613 pixelswhich is equal 10.5MP. This mode is available in both JPEG and RAW. The unusual structure of the pattern of Bayer RGB sub-sensors allows drawing 10.5MP from the matrix to 5.33MP of real pixels.

Photo at Nikon D1x

Photo taken at Nikon D1x. Skinton at high ISO and AWB

Camera supports ISO-125 800, expandable to 3200 in Hi-2 mode. It's funny that the D1x has not yet reached ISO 100. A feature of the D1x camera is its very short minimum excerptwhich is 1 \ 16.000s. Thus, the camera can dose light in a smaller amount than even modern cameras at ISO 100 and 1 \ 8000c. With so short shutter speed you can wonderfully 'freeze' any movement. Minimum excerpt flash synchronization, too, is unusual, and amounts to 1 \ 500s. The camera does not support fast synchronization with the flash, but I met information that with the new firmware, the camera can work in FP mode and shutter speeds up to 1 / 8800s using a Nikon SB-28DX flash or similar. Yes, D1x does not have a built-in flash and can only work with external flashes.

Photo at Nikon D1x

Photo taken at Nikon D1x. Pay attention to ISO and shutter speed

Nikon D1x has built-in focus motor and can work with AF optics (with lenses without a focus motor). This will help save money using old lenses. For test shots in this review, I used just the old film lens Nikon 85mm F / 1.8D AF Nikkor.

Sample photo on Nikon D1x

Sample photo on Nikon D1x

At the camera excellent ergonomics: two control wheels and multi selector, two monochrome displays. The camera does not require a booster, but immediately performed in a combo version of landscape and portrait orientation. Additional menu buttons are hidden behind a metal curtain, which is closed with a magnet. Unfortunately, under the blind there is a white balance control button and a programmable button. By the way, I set up a programmable button to select image quality.

Sample photo on Nikon D1x

Sample photo on Nikon D1x

The camera display is very small, with very small viewing angles. It’s very difficult to view the shot material on it. Basically, the display can serve as a guide to the camera menu, and you can also view the histogram of the captured image. Camera menu is not available in Russian.

Sample photo on Nikon D1x

Sample photo on Nikon D1x

The battery of the camera of the old type Ni-MH withstands up to 200 operations. This is a strong flaw in the camera. I have 3 batteries in the kit, which, from old age, can squeeze out 400 frames combined.

Nikon D1x has everything 5 focus points, for which Multi-CAM1300 is responsible. For some tasks, 5 focus points are very few. Measurement exposure carried out on the basis of 1,005-pixel sensor.

Sample photo on Nikon D1x

Sample photo on Nikon D1x

Total Burst Speed 3 frames per second. The same maximum speed is available in cameras by type Nikon D70, D70s, D60, D3000, D80. This is not enough. Frame buffer can accommodate 12 RAW files with any level of compression. Or, 19 JPEG files any quality. This is neither much nor little, for example, baby Nikon D3100 has 13 RAW files in its buffer. The buffer and shooting speed directly affect the efficiency of the camera. Nikon D1x can continuously shoot for 4 seconds in RAW format. RAW format always 12 bit and has a compression level setting: compressed \ not compressed RAW.

Attention: there is a firmware update for Nikon D1x which allows

  • increase frame buffer up to 14 RAW files and up to 21 JPEG File
  • You can set the compression level of RAW
  • Software can convert 12 bit RAW in pictures with 16-bit color depth
  • You can save pictures with 10.5MP
  • New firmware costs over 200 cu
Example photo on Nikon D1x

Example photo on Nikon D1x

Attention: D1x supports CF cards up to 2GB only. D1x could not digest my 4GB CF card and even more so 32GB. In RAW format, the camera can accommodate a total of 256 pictures. One RAW file weighs approximately 8MB.

Example photo on Nikon D1x

Example photo on Nikon D1x

Features of automatic white balance

Automatic white balance in the cells Nikon D1h, D1x can shift a lot into cold tones. From this Nikon received the label 'Nikon blue'. If you switch BB in another mode, for example, in 'cloudy' or 'shade', then everything falls into place. I showed an example of 'blue' in the photo below - WB Shadow rendered colors almost correctly as they are in real life.

Auto White Balance Blue

Automatic white balance sinitis

Personal experience:

A true professional camera. Nikon D1x is a huge leap forward in camera engineering from 2.6mp in Nikon D1, D1h up to 5.33 on the Nikon D1x. I watched Nikon D1x instead of mine Nikon D200but in D1x I really get confused by a very bad battery, lack of support for large memory cards, lack of flash (not as flash as its command mode), very small display on which it will be difficult to show something to the client. And Nikon D1x is not able to work in matrix metering. exposure with manual optics, and focus points are not enough. And as for a professional flagship camera, the viewfinder is quite small and does not cover 100% of the field of view. In short, by today's standards, the Nikon D1x is not suitable for professional use. I liked the color reproduction in the pictures with Nikon D1x.

Example photo on Nikon D1x

Example photo on Nikon D1x

Gossip

  • Rumor has it that gum stretches on all Nikon cameras from old age. Nikon D1x does not apply to such cameras, its gum is still in place.
  • Rumor has it that from age Nikon D1x loses its ability to work on shutter speed in 1 \ 16000s. This is not so, my copy in the manual camera control mode shows a different histogram for the same picture taken at 1 \ 8000s and 1 \ 16000s.
  • Rumor has it that different Nikon cameras have different focusing motors. Using Nikon D1x, I was convinced of this. The focusing motor is very strong, turns the 'screwdriver' very quickly, in comparison with other cameras it stands out for its aggressiveness and strength.
  • The Nikon D1x is rumored to be blue - yes it is. An example of not quite correct BB shown above.
  • There are rumors that updated firmware allows you to take pictures with 16 bit color depth, it’s not, the camera continues to shoot with 12-bit RAW, and the updated Nikon Capture software can take 16-bit pictures from snapshots.
  • Rumor has it that updated firmware allows you to shoot 9 frames per second in JPEG or TIFF and 6 frames per second in RAW (NEF)... I did not check this, but my opinion is that the camera processor physically could not squeeze 9 fps, it can barely cope with this Nikon D3.
Example photo on Nikon D1x

Example photo on Nikon D1x

Sample photos on Nikon D1x

All sample photos in this D1x review are unprocessed, only the size is reduced and the data from EXIF... Regarding the noise of the matrix - here original shot at ISO 3200.


Prices for modern Nikon cameras in popular stores can look at this link.
Comments here on the site do not require any registration. In the comments, you can ask a question on the topic, or leave your feedback, or describe your experience. For the selection of photographic equipment, I recommend E-Catalog. Many little things for the photo can be found on AliExpress.

conclusions

Nikon D1x - a very unusual old camera that can still please with excellent image quality. Can be used for photo experiments. It is very morally outdated at the present time.

The material was prepared by Arkady Shapoval. My Youtube channeland Radozhiva's group on Facebook и VK.

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Comments: 125, on the topic: Review Nikon D1x

  • flueg

    Review Created: 01/17/11
    Product Rating Product
    6 out of 6 came in handy. This review was helpful.
    “Nikon D1x Still Going Strong After 10 Years Classic”: Member idrkbouknight
    (Feedback by invoice
    1076 )
    Well, the current generation of DSLRs is better, no doubt. But, let's have some fun here.

    I just compared the image captured with the new D7000 from the same scene captured by my D1x. The D7000's picture was better - but not much.

    Does anyone out there work photoshop on a 10 year old computer? The D1x was expensive, but was far ahead of its time.

    Here's how to get a big image with D1x:

    1. Shooting RAW files. “Developing” them with Nikon Capture NX2. I like the 10MP option.

    2. Never overexpose. Expose to be sure that the main points are some textures.

    3. Use manual white balance taken from the gray card for best results, if possible, and time permits. Otherwise, many people (including me) use Cloud-3, an open default instead of Auto WB. Compared to the shots I took yesterday, Auto White Balance and Sumy correspond to D7000 and D3s results are pretty close, cloudy-3 was a little yellow / warm in comparison.

    4. The ebay battery of the latter is pretty good, but always carry spare batteries.

    5. Try to find the D1x with the update buffer. The original buffer fills up quickly for cameras it takes time to get files to a memory card. Use uncompressed NEF, the camera takes too long to compress.

    Advantages of D1x:

    1. I think that the D1x AF screwdriver motor is more powerful than in my D3s. The D1x AF motor really moves the AF lens with a screwdriver component. On some lenses, speed / power difference is noticeable.

    2. Simple and reliable AF. I just realized about the current system, but I'm not sure if the autofocus speed of success is that much better on the current camera.

    3. Very good people skin tones if the white balance is set correctly.

    4. Amazingly decent high (currently average) ISO performance. Better than D2x and D1H. Probably roughly equal to D2h, although I never compared the two.

    5. Built like a tank. But why do rubber coatings come so easily on Nikon?

    The bad:

    1. The batteries are poor by modern standards.

    2. The current on the camera monitors is much better. Hard to come back after looking at the D3 screen.

    3. 3 frames / sec, a bit slow by modern standards.

    Conclusion: the best of the older DSLRs. I will keep my D1x just for fun.

    • Arkady Shapoval

      Terrible translation.

  • flueg

    I agree, but instantly ....

  • flueg

    Now about the matrix: This is the first SuperCCD (it was later used in Fuji S5Pro, slightly changed ...) With a physical size of three to two, the arrangement of pixels of different sensitivity and color on the SuperCCD sensor is not trivial in itself. I'm not sure if I can talk about him easily.

    Firstly, the diagonal. There are diagonals on this sensor in the sense that the classic Bayer alternation of GRGR on one line and BGBG on the other is available exactly along the diagonals. If you walk along rows and columns, then the alternation is more complicated (and don’t ask which one, you can’t get by with a glass). Not all cameras and data formats have a tone curve, among the common ones are Nikon (NEF) and Sony A700 / A900 (8-bit cRAW)

    It is quite obvious that there is no harm from the tone curve (or practically no harm) if the output space is wider than the input, say from 8 bits we make 12 (like Sony) from 12 we make 16 (NEF) But if the input and output spaces have the same bitness, and the curve is different from linear, then we will definitely lose gradations. Nikon D1X has rectangular pixels, sensor resolution is 4028 × 1324, although the camera scaled this image by about 6 megapixels, not 10.5. At the same time, the difference between horizontal and vertical resolution in D1X (according to DPReview) is very much even. (At the time of design, there was no decent processor to process this matrix, and even at such speeds of 1/16000 and three frames per second). In 2002, we got out of this with the help of software (although among programmers in the West they still believe that it was an additional scam for money due to an update - once and through the sale of software - two) .As a result, 11 matrices were removed from the 10,5MP matrix, XNUMX.MP ... .. (programmers believe that Nikon knew everything from the very beginning).

    • Arkady Shapoval

      That's better. The tone curve is no harm when inflating from 12 to 16, but otherwise? Any improvements?

  • flueg

    Of course there is !!! Further, after the software (due to the vertical shift by half a pixel and summing with the previous “pass”), the pixel becomes “square” and a lot of additional information about color and gradation appears, which is displayed in 16 bits .... The same idea (the second pass and folding ...) was well implemented later (in 2006) by Hewllit Packard in their most popular HP G4010 ScanJet and HP G5010 ScanJet scanners (by the way, 96 bits in total)…. By the way - colors about f and g and t e l n s ... ..

  • flueg

    And why cut out posts with answers ... ..

    • Arkady Shapoval

      Dear flueg, all the posts you submitted to the blog have been approved. Watch your words.

  • flueg

    The previous one reappeared after the last….

    • Arkady Shapoval

      This is because you do not indicate the e-mail with which you write, and each comment is moderated separately. I can’t follow Radozhiva 24 hours a day.

  • flueg

    Then I apologize for hitting and if you have any questions I can continue ...

    • Arkady Shapoval

      And what questions can I have?

  • flueg

    Then thank you for your hard work and before any possible (in case of a hook) discussions…. All to you ... most ... Take care of the D1X.

    • Arkady Shapoval

      And thank you! Good luck.

  • flueg

    Forgot to write: Your test image at ISO3200 has a size of 10,5MP (data in the EXIF ​​image properties) - congratulations on the firmware….

    • Arkady Shapoval

      Thank you) I am writing ISO 3200 instead of HI2

  • flueg

    For the convenience of the processor, a vertical set of pixels in the process of shooting is used in pairs (hence the rectangular pixel), and the software using per-pixel addressing (matrix squares) "reads" the full resolution of the matrix using the algorithm I have presented .... Sorry, for the addition - I want it to be a no-brainer….

  • Dmitriy

    Let me join your debate. I’ve been shooting at D1x for almost three years, during this time I learned all its strengths and weaknesses, compared under the same conditions with much more modern models.
    Well, I concluded: I will not change the camera until the shutter lays down. The new ones are definitely better, but not so much that the good old d1x feels like a poor relative. Then I will buy D2x, since you will not find a living "one" by that time.

    What I love for: color, ability to work in extreme weather conditions, reliability, the ability to put any optics, high autofocus sensitivity, accurate exposure metering, a powerful motor that makes even the slowest lenses "run, jump and tumble."
    What is annoying: A WILD BATTERY. But when I remade the battery pack for 18650 lithium cells, this problem has lost its relevance. Well, the noise at high ISO ...
    Burst speed, number of AF points, etc. - they are not critical for me: I started in the film era, which gave me a good immunity from admiration for “record performance”. I think Cartier-Bresson and Robert Capa would agree with me.
    The dispute about the number of megapixels and bit depth in relation to this camera seems to me to be outright scholastic. D1x - was created in the film era, when people thought in other categories. It is archetypal, monumental and conservative, so you either like it or not.

    • Arkady Shapoval

      Thanks for the informative feedback. If it’s not difficult, drop a link to your work, I will cite as an example that all these megapixels and other things do not solve anything special by and large.

  • flueg

    Respect ... very authoritative Dmitry! For Arkady and for most professionals (especially in modern commercial photography and especially in the service sector ...) it is very important to be able to "beat" competitors. Nikon D1x has such an opportunity (partly due to scholasticism).

  • Dmitriy

    on the Internet, my pictures are only on classmates, so it is hardly appropriate to use them as an example. and is it necessary? By definition, it is impossible to convince the “simpsons” - the zombie victims of the manufacturers' marketing policy - that the image quality is not determined by the number of megapixels (as well as by razor sharpness, dizzying bokeh or other objects of worship of techno-fetishists).
    Well, everyone else understands how to get the most out of their technology and are well aware that the attainable level of quality meets their needs.
    ... and in commercial photography one cannot do without glamor and glitz: an expensive camera with a respectable lens is the perfect advertisement!

  • flueg

    http://farm4.staticflickr.com/3296/2652834705_cf04a3d722_o.jpg 10,5MP example

    • Arkady Shapoval

      My site is not link. Either indicate your e-mail address when adding comments, or they will all be located in the spam folder and will not be published on the site.

  • flueg

    Or you can remove all posts….

    • Arkady Shapoval

      okay.

  • flueg

    For you personally on Ebay, four more days already stitched with n l I ...

  • Ivan

    Wonderful review, thanks! But there are a few inaccuracies, and some "goodies" of the camera are also not mentioned. I love this camera and often only shoot with it. Despite the great weight and all sorts of "gifts" from Nikon. Yes, alas, the rubber bands are lagging behind - this is such a thing. However, the biggest "byaka" of this device is a marriage in the shutter in def. batches, it does not interfere with shooting, but the first frame “skips” (writes, “Shutter error”, then it works normally). Nikon acknowledged this defect. Here are the main "goodies" and all sorts of fun of this legendary DSLR: the ability to connect an external GPS without any complicated electronic adapters; the usual full accessory connector (I use it for the intervalometer, it also works as a remote trigger); mechanical interlocks of basic functions; a wonderful bright round viewfinder, where all information is displayed (therefore, displays are not needed, as it were), the focal point of the viewfinder eyepiece is set at 22mm, the viewfinder has an excellent “exposure meter” scale (it is very lacking on some devices in manual mode); “Film” pattern of the matrix; The most convenient and real electronic rangefinder in the viewfinder - works with any glass, two triangles; finally, the FireWire interface - at that time the fastest, now USB 2 can compete, but even then not always. Among other things, this camera was built on the "system" base of the latest top-end DSLR, so many accessories from F6 are good for D1X - for example, I use wardrobe trunks, the digital camera is like a glove).
    In principle, they love this camera because you shoot on it almost like on a Nikon film. Digital display, etc. only auxiliary, no one uses them - all the main functions are placed on buttons and wheels. Yes, the shutter buttons are also locked. In addition, this device is loved for being "serious" - technologies allow it to be used not quite as intended, but with interesting "side" effects.
    For example, there is an infrared filter on the matrix, if you remove it, you can get interesting effects. Of course, the device is loved for its “film” drawing. The matrix is ​​unique, it gives its "picture".
    The disadvantages are as follows. (1) Power consumption, alas, the device is very voracious, it can be treated by replacing the batteries with lithium ones. (2) The matrix is ​​quickly covered with dust with some “sucking” optics, of course, the device has a function to raise the mirror for cleaning the matrix, but this is not a panacea. (3) Weight and size: people on the street turn around, and girls start to pose and smile involuntarily. (4) The matrix is ​​noisy at high. (5) Not quite fast and convenient access and the algorithm for manual preset white balance (a simple Minolta is more convenient), you have to take a frame in gray, and then look in the menu.
    - Battery for the old type Ni-MH camera
    This is not entirely true, as far as I remember, Nikon's “native” batteries are nickel-cadmium, but “non-native” capacious Ni-MH batteries are popular. Charging is very fast and smart, with the ability to train batteries, but big.
    - And also Nikon D1x cannot work in matrix exposure metering with manual optics
    This is also not true, because the D1X uses a special way to measure exposure based on distance. Hence it is obvious that manual optics without an integrated processor (which does not provide data on the distance to the focusing object) cannot be processed by the camera processor. Center-weighted and spotted, of course, work absolutely fine.
    It is better to use a flash like SB-80DX, not lower class - there will be all modes + strobe and manual flash control.

    • Arkady Shapoval

      Center-weighted and spot metering work, but matrix metering does not work, since the lens parameters cannot be driven into the camera. Also, the native battery on the Nikon D1x is still Ni-MH.
      My copy worked out the first shot normally. Thanks for the comment.

  • Ivan

    - Center-weighted and spot metering work, but matrix metering does not work, since the lens parameters cannot be hammered into the camera.
    Yes Yes exactly. But not because the parameters cannot be hammered (although they cannot be hammered), but, as I think, due to the fact that it is impossible to transfer data on the distance to the focusing object in this metering system, which is required by the camera processor. In subsequent systems of “matrix” exposure metering, the data entry was made somewhat differently in this case. Only the focal length can be specified.

    - Also, the native battery on Nikon D1x is still Ni-MH.

    I will not argue, because I do not remember all the nuances. I vaguely remember that the native battery was much smaller in capacity. Actually, all the charm of these batteries was that they tolerated frost well.
    Unlike lithium.

    - My copy worked fine for the first shot.

    We even changed the shutter out of warranty cases. Apparently, you are lucky and you have a “good” game. The rubber bands peeled off there for a well-known reason: to disassemble the camera it was necessary to “peel off” the rubber band and unscrew the screws under the rubber band, so we used weak glue. In addition, at the bottom, near the tripod socket, the elastic was glued very “inconveniently”. The indentation for the rubber band is relatively shallow on the body, for example, the tripod pad simply “demolished” the rubber band.
    By the way, as the well-known legend says, one more "troubles" appeared in outer space - it was this legendary Nikon who "flew" on the space station, but broke down)) It seems that due to a mistake by the astronauts, they forcefully thrust the flash drive. I have not tested these rumors, but I know that the camera has been used frequently by astrophysicists and astronauts. Nikon boasts that he supplied our Roscosmos.
    By the way, I wrote you comments, but noticed that you moderated manually, probably due to the fact that I did not indicate my mail. I apologize, I will indicate the mailbox so as not to complicate the work of your site.

    • Arkady Shapoval

      Yes, all comments without a mailbox are moderated. If the comment has an e-mail, then you can not wait for the comment to appear.

  • Dasha

    Thank you very much for your review. Only recently received this camera. Do you happen to have instructions for using it in Russian? I would be very grateful ...

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English-version of this article https://radojuva.com/en/2012/09/obzor-nikon-d1x/comment-page-2/