The Nikon D3100, an update to the entry-level D3000, has been officially announced. Besides the new DX sensor designed by Nikon, the big inclusion is full HD video with continuous auto-focus, a feature that's so far eluded video DSLRs. Check out the official Nikon press release for the highlights and the product page for full specs. Pricing & availability TBA. Press release follows:
Nikon Corporation is pleased to announce the release of the Nikon D3100, an entry level Nikon DX-format digital-SLR camera. The camera is equipped with a new CMOS image sensor developed by Nikon and a new image-processing engine that enable capture of high-definition images exhibiting superior image quality, and a Guide mode that allows users to capture images just as they intended.
The number of people advancing from a compact digital camera to a digital-SLR camera for better quality images and a more authentic photography experience has been increasing in recent years. However, many have indicated that digital-SLR cameras are difficult to master. To respond to this concern of users advancing to a digital-SLR camera, Nikon began equipping its entry level digital-SLR cameras with a Guide mode that displays instructions for the most basic camera operations for shooting, image playback and editing and the application of camera settings, in the camera monitor. The first camera to be equipped with Guide mode was the Nikon D3000 released in August 2009. This function has proven to be very popular with users.
A new DX-format CMOS image sensor developed by Nikon and the new image-processing engine, EXPEED 2, have been adopted for the new D3100, enabling capture of images exhibiting excellent image quality and definition. The D3100 has also inherited Guide mode from the D3000, with the addition of more options and assist images that make the camera easier to understand and operate. The D3100 is also equipped with a live view function that allows the user to frame images in the monitor, and the D-Movie function that provides support for high-definition movie recording. While the D3100 offers authentic digital-SLR camera performance, it is also an extremely lightweight digital-SLR camera from which even beginners can expect beautiful images that accurately reflect their shooting intent.