Unleashing the Power of Nikon D4 - A Comprehensive Review

Are you looking for a camera that can deliver exceptional performance in all conditions? Look no further than Nikon D4 - a powerful camera designed to meet the needs of professional photographers. In this blog, we will explore the features, benefits, and drawbacks of Nikon D4 and help you make an informed decision.

Written by Victor Chan | Updated: Mon May 01 2023

Nikon D4 article cover photo

Key Features

Jan 06 2012


16 megapixels


Sensor TypeFull frame

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Overview of the D4

Photography is all about capturing the perfect moment. And when it comes to capturing that moment, the right camera is crucial. Nikon D4 is a camera that can withstand the toughest conditions and deliver exceptional performance. In this blog, we will take a deep dive into the technicalities of Nikon D4 and explore why it is a popular choice among professional photographers. From its high-speed continuous shooting to its amazing low-light performance, we will cover everything that you need to know about this camera. So, let's take a closer look at the Nikon D4 and discover what makes it a top-performing camera.

Nikon D4 Pros and Cons

Now, we will look more closely at our review of the Nikon D4 camera. We will see what it can do and compare it to other cameras like it. We will tell you what's good about it and what's not so good. This way, you'll know if it's the camera for you!


High ISO sensitivity
Fast autofocus system
Full HD video recording
Large image sensor
Rugged and durable construction
Ergonomic design
Wide dynamic range


High price point
Heavy body weight
Limited battery life
Average resolution
No built-in Wi-Fi
Limited touchscreen functionality
Limited lens compatibility

Build and Construction

Body and dimensions

Nikon D4

Weather sealed
Dimensions160 x 157 x 91mm

Weather Sealing

The Nikon D4 camera is equipped with environmental seals that make it resistant to weather, preventing water and dust from entering the camera. If you enjoy outdoor photography and need a camera that can handle extreme conditions, the D4 is an excellent choice.

Design and Handling

Main design features

View FinderOptical (pentaprism)
Screen TypeFixed Type
Screen Resolution921k dots
Body typeLarge SLR

Suitable for:

PhotographyAbove Avg.
VideographyAbove Avg.
TravelAbove Avg.

LCD Screen

This camera has a fixed type 3.20" screen, with a display resolution of 921k dots. This makes the Nikon D4 not as suitable for those looking for a vlogging camera as you cannot view yourself while shooting selfies easily. Unfortunately, the camera does not have a touch screen, which may make it less user-friendly.


D4 includes a optical (pentaprism) viewfinder with no electronic viewfinder of resolution with a coverage of 100% and a magnification of 0.7x. This feature enhances the camera's suitability for outdoor photography in bright conditions.

Image Quality

Nikon D4 has a 16MP sized CMOS sensor. You can shoot at maximum resolution of 16 pixels. Nikon D4 has a native ISO range of 100 - 12800 which can be boosted to 50 - 204800. It can also save files in RAW format which gives you a wider room for post processing.

Key Features

Jan 06 2012


100 - 12800

ISO Range

SensorFull frame
Extended ISO50 - 204800
Max resolution4928 x 3280 pixels

DXO Sensor Scores


89 / 102

Color Depth

24.7 / 26.5

Dynamic Range

13.1 / 14.8

Low Light ISO

2965 / 4505

DXO mark sensor scores

The DXOmark rankings indicate that the Nikon D4 camera has excellent color depth performance, which refers to the number of colors the sensor can distinguish. Additionally, its dynamic range is also above average, allowing it to retain medium amounts of details in both bright and dark areas of a scene. The camera's low light ISO performance is average, which is an important factor to consider if you plan to use it in dimly lit indoor environments or at night. Overall the image quality of the D4 is above average

Crop Factor

Camera crop factor (or focal length multiplier) refers to how a camera's sensor size affects the apparent field of view of a lens. Crop factor is determined by comparing the size of a camera's sensor to that of a full-frame sensor, which is a standard reference size for camera sensors.

Size comparison

Medium FormatFull FrameAPS-C (Sony, Nikon)

Crop factor calculator

Crop factor


Full frame equivalent


This camera: Full frame



Connectivity, storage, battery

StorageCompactFlash, XQD
Battery Life2600 shots
Battery ModelEN-EL18
Wireless Connectivity


The Nikon D4 supports CompactFlash, XQD with 2 slots for storage. Having dual SD card slots on the Nikon D4 is highly advantageous as it mitigates the risk of losing footage due to memory card malfunctions. This feature is particularly beneficial for wedding photography and other professional settings.


The Nikon D4 uses the EN-EL18 model of battery pack. This is rated for 2600 shots shots which is high. If you intend to take photos or record videos for an extended period, it might be a good idea to bring along additional batteries.

Photography Features


The Nikon D4 does not have a built-in flash, but it does offer a flash shoe that allows you to attach external flashes. This provides more versatility in your lighting choices.


The Nikon D4 boasts a maximum mechanical shutter speed of 1/8000s, which is ideal for shooting fast-moving subjects in bright environments, such as in sports photography. Faster shutter speeds enable you to freeze the action and capture every detail, making it easier to get the perfect shot.

With a continuous mechanical shutter speed of n/a or an electronic shutter speed of n/a, this camera is not capable of capturing the perfect moment more easily, making it not as suited for wedding, sports, and wildlife photography. Higher shutter speeds make it easier to capture fast-paced action, ensuring that you never miss the perfect shot.


The Nikon D4 includes phase detection autofocus (AF), with 51 number of focus points.

While contrast detection is generally more accurate and precise, phase detection autofocus is faster and more effective in most situations, particularly when photographing moving subjects.

Phase detection autofocus works by dividing the incoming light into pairs and then analyzing how they intersect on the camera's sensor. This method allows the camera to determine not only if a subject is in focus but also the direction and distance needed to adjust the focus to achieve perfect sharpness.

On the other hand, contrast detection autofocus works by analyzing the contrast of an image and adjusting the focus until the highest contrast is detected. While this method is very accurate, it can be slow, especially in low light conditions or when photographing moving subjects.

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What is the sensor size of the Nikon D4?

The Nikon D4 features a CMOS sensor

Is the Nikon D4 weather sealed?

Yes the D4 does have weather sealing.

When was the Nikon D4 announced?

The Nikon D4 was announced on Jan 06 2012

Does the Nikon D4 have in-body image stabilization?

No the D4 does not have in-body image stabilization that can compensate for camera shake, making it easier to shoot handheld in low light conditions.

What is the ISO range of the Nikon D4?

The D4 has a native ISO range of 100-12800, which can be expanded to ISO 50-204800 for even greater sensitivity in low light conditions.

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