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Press Release - April 20, 2005

Related press releases:

New 18-55 and 55-200 DX Lenses
New Nikon D70s SLR

Nikon Introduces The Affordable New D50 – The Smallest, Lightest And Easiest-To-Use Nikon Digital SLR Camera To Date

6.1-Megapixel D50 Arrives in Stores in June 2005 for an Estimated Street Price of $899.95 with the new AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G ED lens

Nikon D50

Read LetsGoDigital's D50 preview

MELVILLE, NY, APRIL 20, 2005 – Nikon ( has taken another bold step forward in redefining the digital SLR landscape today by introducing the highly anticipated D50™ digital SLR camera. The D50 is the smallest, lightest and easiest-to-use Nikon digital SLR camera to date, and is designed for the broadest range of consumers including family memory-keepers looking to take advantage of the image quality, speed and responsiveness Nikon digital SLR’s offer, as well as photo enthusiasts and amateur photographers who want to capture brilliant digital pictures with vibrant color and immaculate sharpness. The new entry-level D50 makes exceptional digital SLR photography a reality for everyone.

“With the new D50, Nikon intends to bring a fulfilling digital SLR photography experience to more consumers than ever before and help them capture their most precious memories with great quality and ease. The D50 inherits the high image quality, responsiveness and speed consumers have come to expect of Nikon’s digital SLR cameras, while also embodying a simple, intuitive and compact design, so anyone in the family can use it without hesitation,” said Steve Heiner, general manager for Digital SLR Camera Systems at Nikon Inc. “The attractive price for the D50 will expand the market substantially and ensure many more people can enjoy shooting with a Nikon digital SLR this year.”

The Ultimate Family Camera

The D50 stands out as ideal for families searching for that perfect camera to capture timeless memories during important occasions and life events such as weddings, first homeruns, birthdays, prom night, and golden anniversaries, among others. The D50 is the perfect combination of intelligent, easy-to-use features and impeccable image quality, and at an estimated street price of $899 (for the D50 outfit with the AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G ED lens), it represents an excellent value for its capabilities. The camera’s seven Digital Vari-Program modes make capturing the moment easier than ever, and the new “Child” mode, for example, assures that moms and dads don’t have to be photography experts to capture the most vivid color and contrast when taking pictures of their children. The D50’s “Child” mode automatically adjusts several of the camera’s settings, including ISO, shutter speeds, and white balance, to produce optimized images when taking pictures of children. The D50 promises to be an ideal tool for parents who refuse to let memories pass them by.

The D50 also includes a full range of manual controls and custom settings, so users can grow with the camera, and advanced photo enthusiasts can find themselves right at home with a D50 in their hands.

Nikon D50

Hallmark Nikon Image Quality and Performance

The D50 incorporates several important new Nikon technologies to ensure a rich, yet simplified experience for consumers. With a new 6.1 effective megapixel Nikon DX Format CCD image sensor and a highly advanced image processing engine, the D50 produces dazzlingly faithful images capable of tremendous enlargement, yet manageable in overall file size. Nikon's new 3D Color Matrix Metering II ensures accurate exposure control in all types of lighting situations by automatically comparing input from its frame-wide 420- pixel metering sensor for each scene to a large onboard database of over 30,000 scenes from actual photography. Professionals and amateurs alike rely on Nikon's exclusive light metering technologies that produce ideal exposures instantly. Newly developed exposure evaluation methods detect highlights and shadows in the frame, and compensate for them to help prevent inaccurate exposure. Shutter speed choices in the D50 extend from 30 seconds to an action-stopping 1/4,000 second. A high-speed flash sync speed up to 1/500 second makes great fill flash photography possible and Nikon’s i-TTL flash technology makes it automatic.

Simple Sophistication

The next evolution of Nikon's popular scene-optimized Digital Vari-Program modes simplifies picture taking, and helps users take incredible pictures with very little effort. The Digital Vari-Program modes also free up the user to think about capturing special and fleeting moments instead of getting overwhelmed with buttons and dials. Selecting one of the seven simple icons from the handy exposure mode dial optimizes otherwise complex settings and ISO-equivalent sensitivity to produce consistently remarkable results. The newly added "Child" mode mentioned earlier makes it easier to take memorable pictures of the little ones complete with vivid color and contrast that are ready to print without the fuss of adjustments within the computer.

Instant Gratification

Unlike lesser systems, the Nikon D50 is always ready to shoot when that special moment or expression presents itself. From the moment the power is turned on, the D50 is ready to shoot in an imperceptible 0.2 seconds. The shutter responds almost instantly when a picture is taken, thereby minimizing ‘shutter-lag’ and virtually eliminating a common frustration of digital photography. Continuous shooting at 2.5 pictures per second? can be maintained for a burst of up to 137 pictures, making action photography a reality. Pictures taken are instantly processed and recorded to a compact SD (Secure Digital) memory card, and a new USB 2.0 Hi-Speed interface supports faster transfer of images when connected to a computer.

Compact, Lightweight and Designed to Go Everywhere

The D50’s compact, lightweight design makes it easy to carry the camera anywhere there’s a good moment to capture. Its smart design and easily accessible controls provide handling efficiency and ease of operation, helping bring the fun back to picture taking. Newly designed plain-language menus are displayed clearly on the large 2.0-inch LCD screen, and intuitive help menus are available for on-the-spot reference. A high capacity rechargeable lithium-ion battery helps extend mobility and convenience by delivering the power to shoot up to 2,000** images on a single charge.

Nikon D50

Interchangeable Lenses: The Nikkor Advantage

One of the unique benefits of shooting with a Nikon digital SLR is the ability to take advantage of the expansive creative possibilities offered by interchangeable Nikkor lenses. With the introduction of the D50, Nikon also introduced two new DX Nikkor lenses that are ideally paired with the D50 to offer consumers a broad zoom range, while maintaining a lightweight and ultra- compact size. Designed exclusively for Nikon’s D- series digital SLR cameras, DX Nikkor lenses are optimized to achieve outstanding center- to-edge-to-corner image quality, when used with any of Nikon’s digital SLR cameras. Nikon’s DX Nikkor range now includes six high performance lenses that offer unmatched wide-angle coverage and versatility:

The D50 also offers seamless compatibility with Nikon's extensive family of over 50 high- performance AF Nikkor lenses, providing the same superb color reproduction, razor-sharp image clarity and fast and accurate autofocus performance relied upon by the countless number of professional photographers who use Nikon's pro digital SLR cameras everyday.

Managing and Sharing with Nikon PictureProject™ Software

Sharing pictures is fun, and Nikon’s new PictureProject software is designed to eliminate the complexities typically associated with sharing, managing and editing pictures on a computer. After conducting exhaustive worldwide research into consumer habits, expectations and requirements, Nikon developed its PictureProject software to be a simple, easy-to-use, and powerful application that addresses most frustrations associated with managing pictures on a computer. PictureProject boasts powerful features wrapped into an intuitive interface that navigates quickly and is easy to master. The software allows users to easily transfer images to PC’s or MAC’s and browse, organize, and share them. Pictures taken in vertical orientation are automatically rotated. Controls for retouch tasks including brightness and red-eye correction, are intuitive and fast. PictureProject’s In Touch™ plug-in allows users to share photos with friends and relatives without attaching them in an email or uploading them to a website. Instead Pictureproject in-Touch facilitates a direct transfer of the pictures from the sender’s computer to a recipient’s computer. PictureProject In-Touch is included in the newest version 1.5 of PictureProject software and can also be downloaded free of charge via

With support for JPEG, TIFF and NEF and compressed NEF (RAW) files, PictureProject also works in close unison with Nikon Capture 4 as the ideal companion to its powerful feature set. Capture 4 is Nikon’s advanced image management and editing software designed to offer the most robust and comprehensive performance with Nikon’s NEF (RAW) files. While PictureProject is already a dynamic component to Nikon photography, the software also supports plug-ins, allowing users to add new features, as technology and the digital camera market evolve.

As part of Nikon’s Total Imaging System, the D50 inherits the advantages of the various components of this system, including high-quality AF and DX Nikkor lenses, the SB-800 and SB-600 Speedlights, which enable use of Nikon's Creative Lighting System, as well as versatile software options, to deliver a new level of operating ease, expanded creative possibilities, and pure enjoyment. The Nikon D50 presents the perfect opportunity for anyone to start enjoying the advantages of Nikon digital SLR photography today.

The Nikon D50 outfit, including the new AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G ED lens, will be available in June for an estimated selling price of $899.95***.


Vivid color and sharp details straight from the camera

  • New 6.1 effective megapixel Nikon DX Format CCD imaging sensor that produces 3,008 x 2,000-pixel images with accurate color, high resolution and sharp details for great pictures capable of significant enlargement, or cropping for creative effect. File sizes remain manageable, making it easier to take and store more great pictures.

  • Advanced digital image processor that marks a further evolution of analog and digital processing and pre-conditioning technologies, producing images that require no preparation in a computer and are ready to print straight from the camera. Image quality is optimized, including auto white balance, auto tone and color control, and real-time processes diminish digital noise to produce beautiful long exposure shots.

  • 3D Color Matrix Metering II ensures accurate exposure control and white balance.
Instant, precise response

  • Near-instant 0.2-second power-up, and short shutter release lag (response) time.

  • Continuous shooting at 2.5 frames per second for a continuous burst of up to 137 pictures without having to wait for the camera to record the images to the SD memory card. (Using JPEG NORMAL - Large settings, and a SanDisk Ultra II 256MB SD Card) The number of continuous shots possible in a single burst may be fewer depending on the type of SD card used.

  • Fast 5-area AF system with predictive focus tracking and Lock-on™ delivers greater precision with fast, more consistent subject acquisition and improved focus tracking to capture all the action as it happens. Automatic AF-assist illuminator helps ensure top AF performance in dark situations.

  • Fast shutter speed with a range from 30 to 1/4,000 sec.

  • Fast flash sync shutter speeds up to 1/500 sec. for great fill-effects under brighter light and back lighted conditions.

  • Fast data transfer and recording to SD memory cards keeps the D50 always ready to shoot in any situation.
Accurate automated and manual control for predictable results

  • Seven Digital Vari-Program selections for automatic adjustment of all the settings necessary to produce incredible digital photographs including ISO-equivalent sensitivity, white balance, sharpening, tone (contrast), color, saturation and hue for crisp and vivid results that match the intended shot. Selections include Auto, Portrait, Landscape, Child, Sports, Close up, and Night Portrait.

  • Image enhancement options optimize sharpening, tone (contrast), color, saturation or hue while using Auto Multi Program [P], Shutter-Priority Auto [S], Aperture-Priority Auto [A], or Manual [M] exposure modes to best match the picture taking situation. The easy to set choices include Normal, Vivid, Sharp, Soft, Direct print, Landscape or Custom optimization.

  • Automatic control over ISO-equivalent sensitivity from ISO 200 to 1600; can also be set manually.

  • Optimized exposure with a choice of three TTL (Through The Lens) exposure modes: 3D Color Matrix Metering II with 420-pixel RGB Sensor, variable Center-Weighted Meter, or choice of Spot Meters.

  • Auto exposure bracketing helps achieve the exact results desired.

  • Flash exposure compensation.

  • A choice of three color modes ensures the best match for the shot when operating the camera manually.
    • Mode Ia: Renders natural-looking skin tones out of the camera. (sRGB)
    • Mode II: Realizes a wider color range suited for processing or retouching. (Adobe RGB)
    • Mode IIIa: Renders vivid landscape and flora colors out of the camera. (sRGB)

  • Simultaneous recording of compressed NEF (RAW) and JPEG image files for the same shot helps by providing a smaller JPEG image file that can be quickly sent via email and a compressed NEF (RAW) file for more creative flexibility using Nikon PictureProject or Capture software for further enhancement.
Intuitive handling and operating ease

  • Light and compact:
    Dimensions (W x H x D): 133 x 102 x 76mm (5.3 x 4.1 x 3.0 in.)
    Weight: Approx. 540g (1 lb. 3 oz.) without battery.

  • Intuitive and familiar operation with ergonomically designed and sensibly located buttons and controls, including the handy multi selector and mode dial.

  • Quality optical viewfinder features diopter correction and information display.

  • New large 2.0-inch LCD monitor located directly below the viewfinder displays the large fonts of the easy-to-view easy-to-understand menu design, and the intuitive help system dialogs that make understanding camera settings easy.

  • Versatile LCD playback options include Single image playback, Thumbnail image playback (4 or 9 pictures at a time), Zoom playback, Slide show, easy Histogram indication for determining highlights and shadow values, and Highlight point displays for even quicker highlight information, with automatic image rotation for vertical shots.

  • LCD control panel on camera top makes it easy to confirm settings and camera status.

  • Long-life rechargeable lithium-ion battery with power to shoot up to 2,000 images*1 on a single charge.

  • Custom Settings for personalizing camera operation to match the individual's shooting style, or different picture taking conditions.

  • Wireless remote control of the D50 can be achieved with the optional ML-L3 remote control.
Easy image handling

  • New Small Picture function for saving photos within the camera at the reduced sizes of 640x480, 320x240, or 160x120 for Internet use - either for mail attachments or placement on web pages.

  • In-camera page setup support makes it easy to print directly from the D50 to any PictBridge compatible printer via the supplied USB cable.

  • Up to 36 alphanumeric characters can be entered in each image's EXIF header (file information) for personal identification when images are viewed in PictureProject software.

  • Video connector and supplied video cable makes it easy to connect the D50 directly to a television for playing slideshows or viewing individual images
Creative and versatile system components

  • High-quality Nikkor lenses: The unrivalled performance of AF, AF-S and DX Nikkor lenses greatly expands creative possibilities.

  • Built-in auto pop-up flash features exclusive i-TTL flash control, fast 1/500 sec. flash sync shutter speed, and coverage for lenses as wide as 18mm.

  • Supports Nikon's Creative Lighting System when using a SB-800 and SB-600 Speedlight mounted on the ISO flash shoe for additional on camera flash output in large rooms, or for longer distance picture situations. Also allows off-camera multiple flash lighting with iTTL Technology with SB-800 and SB-600.

  • Integrated Nikon Software Solutions:
    • Nikon Capture 4 (Ver. 4.3) (optional) is a comprehensive image editing and remote camera control package that fully supports NEF† (RAW), TIFF and JPEG data. Among other features, the package offers Image Dust Off sensor dust and particle shade removal control, D-Lighting for scene-specific automatic dodge and burn control.
    • PictureProject is Nikon's versatile bundled software that simplifies and improves data transfer, as well as browsing and editing of image files. PictureProject features an intuitive user interface, and supports optional plug-ins that add functionality and creative options.

About Nikon

Nikon, At the Heart of the Image™. Nikon Inc. is the world leader in digital imaging, precision optics and photo imaging technology and is globally recognized for setting new standards in product design and performance for its award-winning consumer and professional photographic equipment. Nikon Inc. distributes the Nikon Total Imaging System of consumer and professional digital SLR cameras, Nikkor optics, Speedlights and System Accessories; Nikon Coolpix® compact digital cameras; Coolscan® digital film scanners; 35mm film SLR cameras; Nikon software products and Nikon sports and recreational optics. At the heart of every Nikon camera is Nikon’s Exclusive Feature System, making it easy for anyone to take amazing digital pictures. Through the Nikon Spirit Initiative™, the company, plays an active role in supporting aspiring and advanced photographers through a variety of philanthropic organizations, educational programs, events and workshops. For more information, dial (800) NIKON-US or visit, which links all levels of photographers to the web's most comprehensive photo learning and sharing communities.

* Using JPEG NORMAL - Large settings, and a SanDisk Ultra II SD Card (256MB). The number of continuous shots possible in a single burst may be fewer depending on the type of SD card used.

** 2,000 images per charge achieved under following test conditions:

Fully charged EN-EL3 battery; temperature of 20°C (68°F); Zoom-Nikkor AF-S DX 18-70mm f/3.5-4.5G SG IF ED lens; continuous shooting mode; continuous-servo autofocus; image quality set to JPEG BASIC; image size set to Medium; shutter speed 1/250 sec.; shutter release pressed halfway for three seconds and focus cycled from infinity to minimum range three times with each shot; monitor turned on for five seconds after six shots and then turned off; cycle repeated once exposure meters have turned off.

*** Estimated selling prices listed are only an estimate. Actual prices are set by dealers and are subject to change at any time.

†NEF images taken with the D50 require Nikon Capture 4 (Ver. 4.3) or later.

D50 Specifications

Type of Camera Single-lens reflex digital camera
Effective pixels 6.1 million
Image Sensor RGB CCD, 23.7 x 15.6mm; total pixels: 6.24 million
Image size (pixels) 3,008 x 2,000 [L], 2,256 x 1,496 [M], 1,504 x 1,000 [S]
Sensitivity 200 to 1600 (ISO equivalent) in steps of 1 EV
Storage Media SD Memory Card
LCD monitor Compressed NEF (RAW): 12-bit compression,
JPEG: JPEG baseline-compliant
Storage Media Internal memory: approx. 12MB, SD memory card
Storage System Compressed NEF (RAW) approx. 44, FINE approx. 73
NORMAL approx. 144
BASIC approx. 279, RAW & BASIC approx. 39
Storage System Compressed NEF (RAW): 12-bit compression,
JPEG: JPEG baseline-compliant
File System Exif 2.21, Compliant DCF 2.0 and DPOF
(Number of frames per 256MB SD Memory card, image size L)
RAW approx. 33, FINE approx. 70
NORMAL approx. 137
BASIC approx. 258, RAW & BASIC approx. 29
White Balance Auto (TTL white balance with 420-pixel RGB sensor), six manual
modes, preset white balance, white balance bracketing possible
LCD Monitor 2.0-in., 130,000-dot, low-temperature polysilicon TFT LCD
with brightness adjustment
Playback Function 1 frame: Thumbnail (4 or 9 segments); Magnifying playback; Slide show; Histogram indication; Highlight point display; Auto image rotation
Delete Function Card format, All frames delete, Selected frames delete
Video Output Can be selected from NTSC and PAL
Interface USB 2.0 (Hi-Speed)
Text Input Up to 36 characters of alphanumeric text input available with LCD
monitor and multi-selector; stored in Exif header
Compatible Lenses 1) DX Nikkor: All functions supported
2) Type G or D AF Nikkor: All functions supported
3) Micro Nikkor 85 mm F2.8D: All functions supported except autofocus and some exposure modes
4) Other AF Nikkor: All functions supported except 3D Color Matrix Metering II
5) AI-P Nikkor : All functions supported except 3D Color Matrix Metering II and autofocus
6) Non-CPU : Can be used in exposure mode M, but exposure meter does not function; electronic range finder can be used if maximum aperture is f/5.6 or faster
Note: IX Nikkor lenses can not be used
Picture Angle Equivalent in 35mm [135] format is approx. 1.5 times lens focal length
Viewfinder Fixed eye-level penta-Dach-mirror type; built-in diopter adjustment
(-1.6 to +0.5 m-1)
Eyepoint 18mm (-1.0 m-1)
Focusing Screen Type-B BriteView Clear Matte screen Mark V with superimposed focus brackets
Viewfinder Frame Coverage Approx. 95%
Viewfinder Magnification Approx. 0.75x with 50mm lens at infinity; -1.0m-1
Viewfinder Information Focus indications, AE/FV lock indicator, Shutter speed,
Aperture value, Exposure/Exposure compensation indicator,
Flash output level compensation, Exposure compensation,
Number of remaining exposures, Flash ready indicator
Autofocus TTL phase detection by Nikon Multi-CAM900 autofocus
module with AF-assist illuminator (approx. 0.5m to 3.0m)
Detection range: EV -1 to +19
(ISO 100 equivalent, at normal temperature: 20°C)
Lens Servo 1) Autofocus (AF-A): Auto-Servo AF; camera automatically
chooses single-servo AF (AF-S) or continuous servo AF (AF-C);
predictive focus tracking automatically activated according to
subject status
2) AF-S
3) AF-C
4) Manual focus (M)
Focus Area Can be selected from 5 focus areas
AF Area Mode 1) Single Area AF, 2) Dynamic Area AF,
3) Closest Subject Priority Dynamic Area AF
Focus Lock Focus can be locked by pressing shutter-release button halfway
(single-servo AF) or by pressing AE-L/AF-L button
Exposure Metering System TTL full-aperture exposure metering system
(1) 3D Color Matrix Metering II with 420-pixel RGB sensor
(2) Center-weighted: Weight of 75% (8mm dia. circle)
(3) Spot: Meters 3.5mm dia. circle (about 2.5% of frame)
centered on active focus area
Exposure Metering Range 1) EV 0 to 20 (3D Color Matrix or center-weighted metering)
2) EV 2 to 20 (spot metering) (ISO 100 equivalent, f/1.4 lens, 20°C)
Exposure Mode Digital Vari-Program (Auto, Portrait, Landscape, Child, Sports, Close up, Night portrait),
Programmed Auto [P] with flexible program; Shutter-Priority Auto [S];
Aperture Priority Auto [A]; Manual [M]
Exposure Compensation ±5 EV in increments of 1/3 or 1/2 EV
Auto Exposure Lock Luminosity locked at detected value with AE-L/AF-L button
Auto Exposure Bracketing Three frames ±2 EV in 1/3 or 1/2 steps
Shooting Modes 1) Single frame shooting mode
2) Continuous shooting mode: approx. 2.5 frames per second
3) Self-timer mode
4) Delayed remote mode: 2 sec. delay
5) Quick–response remote mode
Shutter Combined mechanical and CCD electronic shutter, 30 to 1/4000 sec.
in steps of 1/3 or 1/2 EV, bulb
Sync Contact X-contact only; flash synchronization at up to 1/500 sec
Flash Control 1) TTL: TTL flash control by 420-pixel RGB sensor
Built-in Speedlight: i-TTL Balanced Fill-Flash or standard i-TTL
flash (spot metering) SB-800 or 600: i-TTL Balanced Fill-Flash or
standard i-TTL flash (spot metering)
2) Auto aperture: Available with SB-800 with CPU lens
3) Non-TTL Auto: Available with Speedlights such as SB-800,
80DX, 28DX, 28, 27, and 22s
4) Distance-priority manual available with SB-800
Flash Sync Mode 1) Front-curtain Sync (normal sync), 2) Red-eye Reduction,
3) Red-eye Reduction with Slow Sync, 4) Slow Sync,
5) Rear-curtain Sync
Built-in Speedlight Auto, Portrait, Child, Close-up, Night portrait: auto flash with
auto pop-up [P], [S], [A], [M]: manual pop-up with button release
Guide number (ISO 200/ISO 100, m): approx. 15/11 (manual full 17/12)
Flash Compensation -3 to +1 EV in increments of 1/3 or 1/2 EV
Accessory Shoe Standard ISO hot-shoe contact with safety lock provided
Self-timer Electronically controlled timer of 2 to 20 seconds duration
Remote Control Wireless Remote Controller ML-L3 (optional)
Power Source One Rechargeable Li-ion Battery EN-EL3, AC Adapter EH-5 (optional)
Tripod Socket 1/4 in. (ISO1222)
Dimensions (W x H x D) Approx. 133 x 102 x 76mm
Weight Approx. 540g without battery, memory card, or body cap
Supplied Accessories* Rechargeable Li-ion Battery EN-EL3, Quick Charger MH-18a, Video Cable, USB Cable UC-E4, Strap, Body cap, Eyepiece Cap DK-5, Rubber Eyecup DK-20, Accessory shoe cover, PictureProject CD-ROM
Optional Accessories Rechargeable Li-ion Battery EN-EL3, Multi Charger MH-19, Quick Charger MH-18a, AC Adapter EH-5, Speedlight SB-800/600, Eyepiece Magnifier DG-2, Angle Finder DR-6, Nikon Capture 4 (Ver.4.3) Software, Wireless Remote Control ML-L3, Semi-Soft Case CF-D50

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