Having covered the lower rungs of entry-level and consumer range of DSLRs with the Nikon D40, D40x, D50, D70 and D70s, it was really only a matter of time before Nikon finally unveil new additions to take their range of prosumer and pro DSLR cameras to the next chapter. Indeed, anyone who's familiar with Nikon's product cycle, which is fairly predictable by the way, should find it easy to produce a fairly accurate prediction of what new cameras are in the pipeline and subsequently the respective launch dates of those upcoming products. Even if you are totally clueless, all the speculations in circulation should help you fill in the blanks easily.
Strangely, this [predictability] has been working well for both Nikon and industry observers, and is evident in the way Nikon launches new pro DSLR cameras in the past decade or so. Short of being a tradition, it's almost common knowledge that Nikon would always have a new and affordable prosumer SLR ready each time it is ready to unveil its latest pro offering. What's surprising though is that the image quality, functionality and ease of use of the pro offering would often pale in comparison to the prosumer SLR that usually arrives some time later. We saw this for the launch of the F5, D1 and D2 that was quickly followed by the launch of the F100, D100 and D200 prosumer models respectively.
Imagine our anticipation and expectations when Nikon entrusted us with rare prototypes of not one but two of their upcoming SLRs, the D3 and the D300. Bearing in mind that it has taken Nikon literally years to finally refresh their prosumer and pro SLR range, what we have in ours hands are definitely more than just a mundane improvement in the megapixel department.