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Nikon, Pentax Add New DSLR Models

NEW YORK — Feeding consumer demand for full-fledged DSLRs, both Nikon and Ricoh recently introduced new models to satiate continued U.S. preferences for larger professional-looking gear.

Nikon’s D610 is the next installment in the class to the D600 and will be available at the end of the month at a $1,999 suggested retail for the body only or $2,599 for the body and an AF-S 24-85mm VR lens.

The FX-format camera offers only a few improvements over the D600, including an improved white-balance system and a quiet continuous shutter mode of up to 3 fps (6 fps continuous shooting is available without the quiet mode).

But the camera keeps the 24.3-megapixel sensor, the Expeed 3 image processor, 3.2-inch 921,000- dot LCD monitor, video capture of up to FullHD 1080p/30p H.264, external mic and headphone inputs, expandable light sensitivity to ISO 25,600, multi-CAM 4,800 AF sensor with 39 metering points, and built-in flash with commander mode.

The DSLR supports the WU-1b wireless mobile adapter.

Nikon said the sensor and processor work together to enable high image quality with a wide dynamic range and high signal-to-noise ratio for images with smooth color and tonal gradations and low noise levels.

The technologies also combine to enable the 6 fps continuous shooting speed and quiet shooting mode that allows the camera to record sequential shots without raising and lowering the mirror.

FullHD 1080p video is supported up to 30 fps in the MPEG-4 AVC/H.264 format, and manual control over the ISO, shutter speed and aperture is possible for optimized control over the look and feel of movies. Uncompressed recording is possible with an optional external recorder connected via the HDMI port; both headphone and microphone ports are available for refined control over recorded sound.

When working in live view, for either still or movie shooting, a contrast-based AF system is used to achieve focus and can function in continuous, fulltime servo mode for work with moving subjects.

Four distinct AF-area modes are available when using the contrast-detection focusing method: Face-priority AF, Wide-area AF, Normal-area AF and Subject- tracking AF.

The intelligent Scene Recognition System with 3D Color Matrix Metering II uses a 2,016-pixel RGB sensor to evaluate and analyze scenes, including brightness, contrast, subject distance and colors.

During video recording, manual exposure control is possible through adjustment of the ISO, shutter speed and aperture setting, and full-time autofocus can be used along with face detection and subject tracking.

Ricoh Imaging Americas introduced the Pentax K-3 DSLR, which ships in November at a $1,299.95 suggested retail for the body only and $1,699 for a kit with the DA 18- 135mm F3.5-5.6 WR zoom lens. “The Premiere DSLR” in the company’s APS-C digital camera lineup includes a 24-megapixel APS-C CMOS sensor; 8.3 fps burst shooting rate; selectable anti-aliasing (AA) filter technology; and FullHD 24p, 50i and 60i video performance recording.

The camera’s selectable AA filter allows toggling anti-aliasing functionality on or off using the Pentax Shake Reduction mechanism. This offers greater control of image output while eliminating the need to commit to supreme resolution or superior moiré control by providing both options in a single camera body, the company said.

The K-3 also includes dual SD slots that accept a new Pentax FLU SDHC memory card to deliver wireless connectivity to a compatible PC or connected device via a web browser.

The Pentax FLU SDHC 16GB memory card will be available in November for $99.95.

This allows a variety of functions including inspecting a live-view image from a remote device, releasing the K-3’s shutter, shifting the AF sensor point, and checking images recorded on the card using any connected device with a web browser.

The camera adds a variety of creative special-effects modes and an upgraded interval movie mode, which captures a series of 4K-resolution movie clips (3,840 by 2,160) at a fixed interval.

Other features include a newly designed autofocus module, SAFOX11, with 27 AF sensors and high light sensitivity, covering a wide AF working range of –3EV to +18EV.

Ricoh said it will also offer a limited Premium Silver Edition for $1,599.