The New Nikon D600 HDSLR: Bridging the Gap Between Professional and Enthusiast


Nikon has just announced the D600, their most compact full-frame DSLR, featuring a 24.3 megapixel CMOS sensor, EXPEED 3 image processing system, low-light sensitivity to ISO 25600 and a continuous shooting rate up to 5.5 full-resolution frames per second. In addition to image quality, the D600 also features the ability to share your imagery wirelessly with the optional WU-1b Wireless Mobile Adapter. This camera bridges the gap between professional-level DSLRs and more affordable cropped-sensor DSLRs by integrating a large FX sensor into a much more compact body than other full-frame models, allowing you the convenience of carrying a lighter weight body without sacrificing on quality.

FX-Format 24.3 Megapixel CMOS Sensor and EXPEED 3 Image Processor

At the heart of this camera lies a large full frame imaging sensor that is powered by a powerful processing system. This combination alone places the D600 in a unique position, allowing it to attain imagery of the highest quality and sharpness. An FX-sized sensor permits greater capture of nuance and minute details in a scene and allows for more control over the focus plane in your imagery. Additionally, it renders images with greater visual depth and smoother gradations between tones.

This sensor is adequately paired with an EXPEED 3 image processing system, which in addition to the speed afforded across the entire platform, also helps to boost the sensitivity to an expanded ISO 25600. This increased sensitivity also comes with the benefit of reduced noise levels for improved results when working in extreme lighting situations. There is support for continuous still image capture up to 5.5 full-resolution frames per second and Full HD video recording up to 1920 x 1080p at 30 fps.

Intelligent Metering and Focus Systems

Enhancing the sensor’s ability to capture impeccable detail and clarity, the D600 integrates a highly accurate 39-point autofocus system for expedited precision while shooting. The 39 points cover a broad area across the entire image plane, and benefit furthermore with the inclusion of nine cross-type points and seven center focus points. These AF points are functional down to f/8 and are ideally paired for use with tele-converters and longer lenses. When working with Live View and recording HD video, a contrast-detection-based autofocus system is employed for continuous focusing with the mirror up. This ensures critical focus across all working modes and in a variety of situations.

Exposure metering is determined through Nikon’s Intelligent Scene Recognition System, which utilizes 3D Color Matrix Metering II. This metering system makes use of a 2016-pixel RGB sensor for evaluating the entire scene’s brightness and contrast values, subject distance and colors in order to determine the exposure settings. The acquired data is then stored for comparative use to ensure consistency among different exposures in regard to white balance and overall exposure values. It also helps to improve i-TTL flash measurements and subject-tracking focus.

High Definition Video Recording

Mutually benefitting from the full frame sensor size, HD video recording is improved with the D600 and can support recording in both Full HD 1920 x 1080p as well as 1280 x 720p formats in a variety of frame rates.  While recording video, you have manual control of your exposure settings through use of the exposure compensation dial, shutter speed, or ISO settings; continuous autofocusing capabilities with face priority; still image capture capability; and dedicated inputs for both headphones and an external microphone. For the highest video quality, the camera can also output uncompressed 8-bit Full HD video during recording through the HDMI port. This enables you to use an outboard recorder to capture footage for rich detail and image fidelity.

Design and Compatibility

In conjunction with the innovatively large sensor, the size of the body is innovatively compact. The combination allows for users to gain the image quality potential of a professional-grade camera within a more convenient form factor. While the body is small in comparison to the imaging technology, the D600 still possess a large, high-resolution 3.2-inch LCD monitor with a 921K-dot resolution. The monitor provides 100% frame coverage and supports wide-angle viewing up to 170° in all directions.

The D600 features Nikon’s proprietary F lens mount, which provides compatibility with a vast array of lens choices. Being a full, 35mm-sized sensor, there is also more support for wide-angle lenses, compared to cameras with DX-sized sensors. The D600 is available as a body only, or in kit form with the inclusion of the AF-S NIKKOR 24-85mm f/3.5-4.5G ED VR lens. This lens provides an ample focal length range for most shooting situations and features VR vibration reduction for reducing the appearance of camera shake.

Wireless Compatibility

For instant gratification after shooting, the WU-1b Wireless Mobile Adapter provides full Wi-Fi connectivity for instantly sharing your images straight from your D600. This small adapter kit plugs directly into the camera body and enables your camera to send images to your smart phone or tablet. Once the images have been transferred, you can easily share your work on social networking sites, through email or upload to cloud-based storage sites. Additionally, it allows you to gain remote control of the camera from your mobile device. Wireless control of the D600 is available for iOS or Android-based smart phones or tablets once the Nikon Wireless app has been downloaded. When working in this app, you can view from your camera’s perspective and trigger the shutter release, making it ideal for self-portrait or distant applications.

The Nikon D600 is an innovatively designed camera, poised to blur the boundary between the professional and enthusiast markets. The incorporation of a large, FX-format sensor within a compact body brings the best of both realms together without neglecting attention to details. Cinematic-quality HD video, intelligent exposure and focus systems, and processing power are all highlights of the D600 that serve to bridge the gap between previously polarized worlds.

Type Single-lens reflex digital camera
Lens Mount Nikon F bayonet mount
Effective Pixels 24.3MP
Total Pixels 24.7MP
Sensor Size 35.9 x 24mm
Image Sensor Format FX
Image Sensor Type CMOS
Dust Reduction System Image sensor cleaning
Image Area (Pixels) FX-format
L: 6016 x 4016
M: 4512 x 3008
S: 3008 x 2008
L: 3936 x 2624
M: 2944 x 1968
S: 1968 x 1312
Still Image File Format JPEG (Fine, Normal, Basic), NEF (RAW; Lossless Compressed, Compressed, or Uncompressed 12 or 14-bit), TIFF (RGB)
Picture Control Landscape, Monochrome, Neutral, Portrait, Standard, User-customizable settings, Vivid
Storage Media Type SD, SDHC, SDXC
Card Slot 2x SD
File System Compliant with DCF (Design Rule for Camera File System) 2.0, DPOF (Digital Print Order Format), EXIF 2.3 (Exchangeable Image File Format for Digital Still Cameras), PictBridge
Viewfinder Eye-level Pentaprism Single-Lens Reflex Viewfinder
Viewfinder Frame Coverage FX: approx. 100%, DX: approx. 97%
Viewfinder Magnification Approx. 0.7x
Viewfinder Eyepoint 20.6mm (-1.0m)
Viewfinder Diopter Adjustment Built-in diopter (-3 to +1 m)
Focusing Screen Type B BriteView Clear Matte Mark VIII with AF Area Brackets (grid lines can be displayed)
Reflex Mirror Quick-return type
Lens Aperture Instant-return type
Compatible Lenses AF NIKKOR lenses (including G and D lenses), AI-P NIKKOR lenses, and non-CPU AI lenses
Shutter Type Electronically controlled vertical-travel focal-plane
Shutter Speed Range 1/4000 to 30 sec., bulb
Flash Sync Speed Up to 1/200 sec. (synchronizes with shutter at 1/250 sec. or slower)
Shutter Release Modes Continuous low-speed, Continuous high-speed, Mirror-up mode, Quiet shutter release, Self-timer mode, Single-frame mode
Continuous Shooting Rate Up to 5.5 fps
Self-Timer 2, 5, 10, 20 sec. delay
Exposure Metering System TTL exposure metering using 2,016-pixel RGB sensor
Metering Method Center-weighted, Matrix, Spot
Metering Range 0 to 20 EV
Exposure Modes Programmed auto with flexible program (P), Aperture-priority (A), Shutter-priority (S), Manual (M)
Exposure Compensation +/-5 EV in 1/3, 1/2, or 1 steps
Exposure Bracketing 2 or 3 frames in 1/3, 1/2, 2/3, 1, or 2 EV steps
ISO Sensitivity ISO 100-6400 (expandable to ISO 50-25600)
Focus Modes Auto AF-S/AF-C selection (AF-A), Continuous-servo (AF-C), Face-Priority AF (available in Live View and D-Movie only), Manual (M) with electronic rangefinder, Normal area, Single-servo AF (AF-S), Wide area
Maximum Autofocus Areas/Points 39
Autofocus Sensitivity -1 to +19 EV (ISO 100, 68°F / 20°C)
Flash Bracketing 2 or 3 frames in 1/3, 1/2, 2/3, 1, or 2 EV steps
Built-In Flash Guide Number 39' / 11.9m (ISO 100)
Flash Sync Modes Front-curtain sync (normal), Rear-curtain sync, Red-Eye reduction, Red-Eye reduction with slow sync, Slow sync
Flash Compensation -3 to +1 EV in 1/3, 1/2, or 1 steps
White Balance Modes Auto, Choose color temperature (2500K–10000K), Cloudy, Direct Sunlight, Flash, Fluorescent (7 types), Incandescent, Preset manual (up to 4 values can be stored), Shade
Movie Metering TTL exposure metering using main image sensor .
Movie Maximum Recording Time 20 min. at highest quality, 29 min. 59 sec. at normal quality
Movie File Format MOV
Movie Video Compression H.264/MPEG-4 AVC
Movie Audio Recording Format Linear PCM
Movie Formats 1920 x 1080/30p, 25p, 24p
1280 x 720/60p, 50p, 30p, 25p
Microphone Built-in microphone (monaural) or external stereo microphone (optional)
Monitor Size 3.2" / 8.1 cm
Monitor Resolution 921,000-dots
Monitor Type Wide viewing angle TFT-LCD
Monitor Angle of View 170° wide-viewing angle
Monitor Adjustments Brightness (5 levels)
Interface Type C mini-pin HDMI, headphone jack, USB 2.0, stereo microphone input
Wi-Fi Functionality Eye-Fi compatible, WU-1b Wireless Mobile Adapter compatible
Power Source EN-EL15 rechargeable lithium-ion battery
Battery Life 900 shots per charge (CIPA)
Tripod Socket 1/4"
Operating Temperature 32-104°F / 0-40°C
Dimensions 5.6 x 4.4 x 3.2" / 141 x 113 x 82mm
Weight 2.6 lb / 1.2 kg

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What is the max shutter speed?

According to Nikon website, top speed is 1/4000. Slowest is 30 seconds.

The maximum shutter speed of the camera is 1/4000 of a second. The slowest programmable is 30 seconds, and it also has a bulb feature for exposures longer than 30 seconds.

The word on the street last week was the fastest shutter speed would be 1/4000 sec, half that of the D7000, i have not seen the spec anywhere, do you know?

I don't think I have ever shot anything at 1/2000 much less 1/4000 or 1/8000.

Shooting sports, I shoot at 1/2000 and higher often.
The D600 listed as 5.5fps is not much improvement.
Wish they would of increased it.

Hello Ron -

The maximum shutter speed of the new Nikon D600 is listed at 1/4000 second.

Max shutter speed D7000 = 1/8000
Max shutter speed D600 = 1/4000
Min ISO D7000 = 100
Min ISO D600 = 50

When talking exposure they are the same. The only time you'd see a difference is when trying to freeze extremely fast moving objects in bright daylight. Otherwise, using a flash in the dark is how you'd freeze motion anyway.

Most compact? A few mm smaller than D700? I am still waiting for a camera like F3, small, without video and lot of unneeded buttons and functions, for manual operation, for enjoying in focusing. Without antialiasing filter, and of course a variant with BW chip (but, without additional cost like current D800). If you need less, you pay more (Leica BW). Is it a time for a change?

Just the Nikon I've been waiting for, to upgrade from my D90.
Full frame sensor, 39 focusing points & SD cards. My kind of camera.
I wonder how it performs with my Nikkor 18-200VR - DX ? Any thoughts?

Stick to d7000 if u want to use DX lens in this body

So, would there be any reason to own both the D600 and the D7000 as a back up for an occasional wedding/mostly personal shooter? I currently own the D7000 with a few nice DX lenses but I have always wanted the more proffessional FX lens with their better build and generally faster glass. So, I would sell my 70-300 and buy the 70-200 but still use some of my other DX lenses for the back up D7000. Of course, money is always an object, but wanted to read what others thought. Such a pain with two lens types.

That lens is designed for crop sensor (DX) bodies ( d90, d7000, d5000, etc.). It will work but you will see heavy darkening in the edges of the frame or the camera will go into crop (DX) mode. In any case you will just have a very expensive crop body with this lens. This is an FX body and therefore need FX lenses to get full benefit of the camera. I would try to get the excellent ( for a super zoom) 28-300 FX from Nikon if you are thinking of getting this body. This lens has the same field of view as the 18-200 lens you have.
If you want to keep that lens, the D7000 would be an excellent choice.

Why should he buy a D7000 just because he has a DX lens? That will limit him to DX in the future. Maybe he can't afford a new FX lens right now but in the future he might. Stop suggesting things to people who you don't know.

Tony, your input seems useful. Why demean the input someone else "who you don't know?" Leave the ego out of it -- go for win-win communication and your knowledge will be appreciated.

Oops! Seems like I touched a nerve here Tony! I am just replying based on the information he gave described. I didn't pretend to know him any more than I know you! My recommendation could have been different if more information was given such as what other lens, if any, he has and what he intends to do with his kit. As a rule of thumb, investing in better optics FIRST is better than getting a new body since bodies come and go as technology improves.

Sell the 18-200 and use that money towards the Nikon 28-300. A perfect lens for the D600. Evens out in the end and the glass is better.

So excited! I have been waiting for this for so long! I want! It looks to almost have the same layout as the D7000.

Is a vertical grip available for this D600?

Nikon will be offering a battery grip for the D600, called the MB-D14. Currently they have not indicated any price or availability. Keep an eye out on our site, when we receive info we will post it there.

You can find info about the battery grip at Nikonusa. However, it was silent about whether its use would increase the frames per second speed from the 5.5 max.

Can anyone tell me given the 5.5 fps speed and 24 mp sensor of the new D600, in how many seconds or in how many exposures will the buffer fill before the camera "shuts down" and no exposures can be taken? The 24 mp seems more practical than the 36 mp of the D800, which fills the camera buffer in 2.5 seconds or 10 exposures.

As many different sites have posted details on this camera, I am not able to find any details on a maximum number of exposures that can be taken before the buffer fills. Hopefully Nikon will release more details like this in the near future. Once they post a copy of the instruction manual in PDF format online, questions like these will be able to be answered.

This camera is all about size but yet the dimensions of the camera are 'not specified by manufacturer.' What lame-brain in the marketing department at Nikon thought this wasn't important?

Can you not perform an internet seach? Go to the Nikon USA site. The dimensions are clearly listed:

Camera dimensions not listed. You just have to find something to complain about. You guys just freak me out.

Why is it D600 when u already have D800. Why is it cheaper than d700 and other higher level of nikon. I love 600 features for the price. It what's the difference between 600 and 700?

The D700 is a very heavy camera and this is much more compact and lightweight. The D700 is only compatible with FX lens, where as this and the D800 are compatible with FX and DX lenses. And mostly the D700 is only 16-17 megapixels, where as this is 26 and less than the 32 of the D800. Its a perfect mix of the D700 and the D800 (from what I read obviously!) :-D

The D700, like the D800, is compatible with both FX and DX lenses. It automatically switches the resolution/frame size to match the lens.

The D700 is 12MP, while the D600 is 24MP and the D800 is 36MP. D700 can take DX lens however crop factor gives a 5.5 MP image when DX is applied. The other 2 would take DX as well with more MP crop factor. I would have preferred at least one CF card slot instead of 2 SD slots as CF cards are more robust. However I am a professional, so D800 may be logical upgrade from D700. Not in a rush as D700 still delivers great images but not any video though.

"I am a professional" Don't make me laugh!

If you hang anything other than a 14-24, 24-70 or 70-200 with a prime of course, than this is your logical upgrade. F4's, 28-300's etc on the D800/E just won't cut it. Invest in lenses first.

From your comment obviously you do not do weddings or video and did not understand what I was saying at all. I only use FX on D700 and have Nikons 24-70mm, 24-120 and 28-300 and 60 micro2.8, plus 10-24 Tamron. The 28-300 is much more versatile to use for inside churches for reach, than the 70-200 which I know is also sharp. I was only saying that in a pinch one could use DX on higher pixel cameras like D600 and D800 for longer reach for say wildlife photos maybe or video reach, and still achieve 10mp or more in DX crop (not good enough on D700 resolution though). For weddings, no need to go longer reach than I have in FX, and I prefer FX only anyway on D700. With excellent programs like Lightroom and DXO Optics Pro 7, Photoshop and Nik Color Effects plugins, the programs enhance and bring out more of the details in the photo that are superior in FX including D700 which many pros love. Your comments are too general and opinionated to your own needs. D800 needs best FX glass I hear to achieve best results due to high MP, and D600 would benefit from it as well but video does not use as much of the pixels for full HD video so center crop would still cover it for HD video using superior low light sensors of camera.

To "fxed": Replying to your comment that F4 lenses do not cut it professionally on Nikon D800/E, Nikon put the gold ring on the F4 24-120 claiming it as professional themselves. Well known, well respected professional landscape photographer Michael Riechman from Luminous Landscape actually picked the F4 24-120 over the F2.8 24-70 for his D800E photos due to VR in low light extra stops advantage, image quality and constant F4. For landscape F4 or higher would likely be preferred over F2.8 which is more for portrait and subject isolation. The other lens you mention: Nikon FX 28-300 can get in closer from far distances and hence capture more detail information than 70-200mm from same distance and hence can be more professional for very long distance photos without having to crop later which is a big advantage. Ken Rockwell, whether you like his reviews or not, has photos to demonstrate this extra reach detail advantage for this lens. F2.8 sharp lenses at F2.8 use are great for specific subject isolation (limited area of focus) but higher F stops give more sharpness over an extended depth of field and macro photos often are taken at F8 to F11 for extreme closeups, ask well known Robin Wong at his blog with great macro insect samples which still achieve lots of background bokeh even at these higher F stops because in macro your DOF is very small to start anyway. Your statement that F4 and 28-300 mm Nikon FX lens do not cut it, is incorrect and I would like to help anyone else reading this with less experience, that you can buy these lens for very good "pro" use indeed.

The first I seen about the D600 the price was less than $1000.00 how did it get up to over $2000.00?

There is no way this camera would sell for less than $1000. I'm actually surprised that it's only $2000. Sure has me thinking about selling my D7000 for this!

I was hoping for around $1500 body only. At the $2000 price I will wait awhile. There are too many alternatives out there.

Oh really? Where did you hear it was going to be under $1000? In a forum somewhere? Because they are always so accurate.

will there be a long wait for this camera ?? and is there a replacement for the d7000 coming on line soon


At this time we do not know how Nikon will handle supply and demand nor the future of the D7000. We'll have to wait and see.

I hope they do a better job of meeting demand than they did with the D800. Most places still have a waiting line for that camera and it's been out how long????

Ahhhh...weight is 760 g. or 42 ounces? I think Nikon screwed up!

760g/28.349g/oz=26.8 oz
26.8oz/16oz/oz/lb=1.675 lbs

Ironically, the difference in weight is equal to the combined weight of all of you're mathematicians' brains!!


Look again. 1.2 kilos is 1200 grams.

760gms = 42oz Ummm, I think someone needs to go back to school

Wow!!! I really hadn't thought about moving to a full frame camera because I like the extra reach of the DX. However, this is a game changer. If it performs as well as expected this will be an amazing camera.

Before u buy this. Look at the Sony a99. That is the camera to buy trust me

How about using DX lens in the 1080 hd video mode??