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Nikon released information on the much-anticipated Nikon D80 DSLR camera on Wednesday. The camera, available in September, has a 10.2-megapixel CCD like the D200, but a battery life, price and features closer to that of the lower-end D70s. With an MSRP of $999.95 for the body alone, Nikon seems to be aiming for the best of both worlds. The Nikon D80 offers continuous shooting at 3 frames per second for up to 100 shots when shooting in JPEG normal mode, Nikon says.
According to the company, the EN-EL3e rechargeable lithium-ion battery for the D80 can last up to 2,700 shots. (The D70s EN-EL3a battery lasted 2,500 hundred shots, and the D200 battery lasted only 1,800.) The Nikon D80 also has a “fuel gauge” for the battery that tells the user how many shots have been taken since the last charge, instead of the usual battery icon indicator.
The Nikon D80 body can be purchased alone ($999.95 MSRP), or as a kit with lens ($1,299.95 MSRP). The kit lens for the Nikon D80 is a new 18-135 mm DX Nikkor Lens.
The Nikon D80 has a larger and brighter viewfinder than previous models, according to Nikon. The viewfinder also features a new diopter adjustment control knob to adjust for personal eyesight. The LCD screen is 2.5 inches with a 170-degree angle of view.
As on the Nikon D2 professional DSLR, the Nikon D80 has an 11-area AF system that allows adjustment of focus on 11 points within an image. A new “retouch” menu follows the trend of DSLRs becoming a source for photo editing, as well as the point of capture. Retouch is a photo-editing software included in the Nikon D80’s menu system.
The Nikon 3D Color Matrix Metering II is also included on the Nikon D80. This is the Nikon algorithm that determines the best exposure value for a lighting condition by drawing on an in-camera database of 30,000 lighting scenes, in addition to measuring the metrics of a current scene.
The Nikon D80 has a control for ISO sensitivity, noise reduction for extended exposure shooting, and a configurable high ISO noise reduction feature.