Proving that speed and resolution can indeed coexist, the Nikon D850 is a multimedia DSLR that brings together robust stills capabilities along with apt movie and time-lapse recording. Revolving around a newly designed 45.7MP BSI CMOS sensor and proven EXPEED 5 image processor, the D850 is clearly distinguished by its high resolution for recording detailed imagery. The back-illuminated design of the sensor is able to acquire greater detail and clarity when working in low-light conditions, and the sensor also forgoes an optical low-pass filter for improved sharpness. Working in conjunction with the sensor is the EXPEED 5 image processor, which together afford a 7 fps continuous shooting rate for up to 51 consecutive frames, an expandable sensitivity range from ISO 32 to 102400, and 4K UHD video recording using either a DX crop or the entire area of the full-frame sensor. An 8K time-lapse recording mode is also available, as well as additional specialized recording modes for digitizing film negatives and for focus stacking applications. Benefitting the imaging capabilities is an advanced Multi-CAM 20K 153-point AF system, which debuted with the flagship D5 and offers 99 cross-type sensors for refined focusing accuracy in a variety of lighting conditions. Checking off a number of boxes for multimedia image-makers, the D850 positions itself as not only a high-resolution DSLR but also as a camera for speed, movies, and low-light shooting needs.
Balancing the versatile imaging features, the D850 is also equally refined in its physical design. A large optical pentaprism offering a wide field of view and 0.75x magnification affords photographers a bright, clear, and realistic view for critical shooting needs. Conversely, a 3.2″ 2.36m-dot LCD touchscreen is also available for live view shooting, playback, and menu navigation, and features a tilting design to suit working from high and low angles. A weather-sealed design is also employed, to suit working in a variety of environmental conditions, and the optional MB-D18 grip can be added to boost overall shooting times and continuous shooting rates. Additionally, built-in SnapBridge allows for wireless sharing of low-resolution imagery and remote live view use on a linked mobile device, and an optional WT-7a Wireless Transmitter can also be used for faster wireless transferring of files.
45.7MP FX-Format BSI CMOS Sensor and EXPEED 5 Processor
Benefitting the sensor is the apt EXPEED 5 image processor, which affords a wealth of speed throughout the camera system, including the ability to shoot continuously at 7 fps for up to 51 consecutive 14-bit lossless compressed raw files in a single burst. When working with the optional MB-D18 grip and EN-EL18a/b battery, this shooting rate can be increased to 9 fps, and up to 30 fps shooting is possible when working in a DX crop mode during Silent Live View.
153-Point Multi-CAM 20K Autofocus System
Managing the abundance of focusing points is a dedicated AF engine, which offers quick response times to benefit tracking fast and randomly moving subjects, even at the top 7 fps shooting rate. The AF engine also contributes to enhanced focusing sensitivity, with all points capable of focusing -4 EV for working in very dark, low-contrast situations.
Furthering the versatility of the focusing system, different AF-area modes can be selected to support varying types of subject matter:
- Single-Point AF: The camera uses a single point to find focus.
- Dynamic-Area AF: Available with 25, 72, or 153-point selections, this mode uses a primary single focus point to lock onto focus, and then makes use of the surrounding points for maintaining focus while tracking erratically-moving subjects.
- Group-Area AF: This mode treats smaller groups of AF points as a single point for a wider field of recognition, and is well-suited to tracking faces or other detailed subjects.
- 3D-Tracking: Using a subject’s color information, this mode utilizes all 153 points to maintain focus on a moving subject while half-pressing the shutter button.
- Auto-Area AF: This mode makes use of all 153 points to quickly identify the main subject, and then prioritizes recognized faces as portrait subjects in any AF servo mode.