When it comes to Nikon’s DX-format DSLR lineup, the D500 is distinguished by its solid physical construction, strong photography capabilities, and, of course, a more compact and streamlined design than its FX-format counterparts.
This camera, which is built around a 20.9MP CMOS sensor and an EXPEED 5 image processor, appeals to both still and video photographers, thanks to its quick 10-frames-per-second continuous shooting rate and 4K UHD video recording capabilities. Aside from that, the sensor and processor work together to provide a natural sensitivity range of up to ISO 51200, which can be further enhanced to ISO 1640000 for working in low-light and harsh lighting circumstances, respectively.
Its large Multi-CAM 20K 153-point AF system, which includes 99 cross-type points for rapid performance and precise subject tracking capabilities, contributes to the D500’s quick shooting performance as well. While it may be small in form, the D500 is not lacking in terms of functionality and adaptability.
Aside from its photography capabilities, this sophisticated DSLR also has a remarkable handling design, which includes a 3.2-inch, 2.36-million-dot tilting LCD touchscreen that allows for comfortable operation from both high and low angles.
SnapBridge, an upgraded version of which has Wi-Fi networking with NFC as well as Bluetooth Low Energy technology for connecting your mobile device for wireless image sharing, is also included. On top of all the convenience features, the D500 is built in a sturdy magnesium alloy chassis that is both dustproof and waterproof, making it ideal for working in a variety of challenging locations.
A 20.9-megapixel DX-format CMOS sensor and the EXPEED 5 image processor are included.
Together, the DX-format 20.9MP CMOS sensor and EXPEED 5 image processor deliver an exceptional combination of high sensitivity, nuanced picture quality, and rapid overall performance for a professional-grade camera. In its basic settings, the camera’s sensitivity range is ISO 100-5120, which allows it to function in a wide range of lighting circumstances.
This range may be further enlarged to ISO 50-1640000 (Lo 1 to Hi 5) to handle even the most demanding of scenarios. The combination of resolution and sensor size also adds to crisp image quality and smooth color transitions, as well as decreased noise over the whole sensitivity range.
In addition to improving image quality, the EXPEED 5 processor provides an unprecedented amount of speed throughout the camera system, including a maximum continuous shooting rate of 10 frames per second with full-time autofocus and exposure metering and a maximum continuous shooting rate of 10 frames per second with full-time autofocus and exposure metering.
Even when shooting 14-bit lossless compressed NEF files, a single burst of up to 200 frames can be captured in a single shot. In addition, slower continuous filming speeds are possible, as is a Quiet Continuous Mode, which allows for 3 frames per second shooting in noise-sensitive environments.
4K Ultra-High-Definition Video Recording
Along with the ability to capture still images, the D500 also supports 4K UHD video recording at frame rates of 30, 25, and 24 frames per second, as well as Full HD/HD recording at up to 60 frames per second. Movie files can be saved to internal memory cards or transferred as an uncompressed file to an optional external recorder via HDMI out. To ensure that the quality and variety of your videos are not compromised, three different picture area options are available:
4K Ultra High Definition (UHD) movie picture format is a region that gives a 1.5x increase in the effective focal length of the lens in use and is reserved for 4K (3840 x 2160) recording and has a resolution of 3840 x 2160.
- FULL HD and HD video are recorded using the 1.3x-based movie picture region, which gives a 1.3x cut of the DX sensor and is used for recording.
- The DX-based movie picture format makes use of the entire width of the DX-format sensor and is utilized to record Full HD 1920 x 1080 and HD 1280 x 720 video in both Full HD and HD resolutions. This setting is ideal for achieving shallow depth of field effects while still providing the largest field of vision possible.
To capture images in both low- and high-light circumstances, a broad range of sensitivities is accessible, ranging from extended ISO 100 to 1640000, and sensitivity levels may be manually adjusted via the specialized movie-shooting menu, just as they do for still photography.
Additionally, a video-optimized Flat Picture Control mode can be employed during recording to flatten the overall contrast curve, allowing for greater control during post-production and color grading operations.
Electronic Vibration Reduction (EVR) is a feature that can be used during Full HD and HD recording to reduce the appearance of camera shake across three axes to control horizontal, vertical, and rotational movements.
This feature is particularly useful for handheld shooting because it reduces the appearance of camera shake across three axes. Also available during Full HD/HD photography is Active D-Lighting, which may be used to retain highlight and shadow detail while working in high-contrast scenarios.
In terms of operation, a dedicated power aperture button (Pv) allows for smooth, continuous exposure transitions when going from light to dark regions, and Auto ISO may be utilized to ensure consistent brightness when working in shifting light conditions.
In addition to using the built-in stereo microphone, an optional external microphone may be connected through the 3.5mm stereo connector for even more control over sound quality when recording.
The audio levels may be changed in 20 increments whether the in-camera microphone or an external microphone is being used, and live monitoring is enabled through the headphone connector, which offers 30 various volume levels for playback.
It is also possible to record time-lapse videos using the camera’s 4K UHD/30p output, which can capture up to 9999 consecutive frames over a period of up to one week. This is in addition to regular movie recording.
Autofocus system with 153 points and a 20K resolution.
The appropriate Multi-CAM 20K AF system, which matches the camera’s speed and image capabilities, has 153 total phase-detection points, including 99 cross-type sensors for enhanced subject identification, and 55 of the points are customizable for increased compositional flexibility.
Super telephoto lenses and teleconverters will benefit from the fact that 15 of the points (including 9 selectable points) are compatible with an effective aperture of f/8, and all 153 points are compatible with effective apertures of f/5.6 or brighter.
A specialized AF engine, which complements the multitude of focusing points by providing short response times to benefit tracking fast and randomly moving subjects, even while shooting at the highest possible frame rate of 10 frames per second, is also included in the package.
When operating in very dark, low-contrast environments, the AF engine adds to improved focusing sensitivity, with all points capable of focusing down to -3 EV and the central point capable of reading down to -4 EV.
- A total of seven distinct AF-area modes may be used to accommodate a variety of subject matter, thus increasing the adaptability of the focusing system:
- A single point is used to find focus by the camera in Single-Point AF.
- Dynamic-Area AF: This mode, which is available with 25, 72, or 153 focus points, employs a single primary focus point to lock onto focus and then makes use of the surrounding points to maintain focus while tracking wildly moving targets.
- When tracking faces or other detailed things, this mode is particularly useful since it treats smaller groups of AF points as if they were a single point, allowing a larger field of recognition.
- 3D-Tracking: Using the color information of a subject, this mode makes use of all 153 points to keep the focus on a moving target while half-pressing the shutter button on the camera’s back.
- This mode makes use of all 153 points in order to swiftly identify the main subject and then prioritizes identified faces in any AF servo mode while photographing portrait subjects.
In addition to the variety of AF-area modes available, an AF lock-on function may be employed to increase subject tracking performance. This function is controlled by two parameters: the speed with which the camera responds to a blacked-out image and the consistency with which it moves the subject.
Through the use of these parameters, the AF performance may be tuned to cope with a wide range of subject movement types.
The last feature is the ability to use an exclusive auto AF fine-tune function to ensure that each installed lens achieves the greatest possible focus performance. To avoid the need for photographing distance charts, this feature allows you to obtain accurate focus manually in live view and then have the AF system calibrate itself to the finely adjusted focus point, which helps to reduce front- and back-focusing problems.
Designing Your Body
- A huge 3.2-inch rear LCD panel with a high 2,359k-dot resolution allows for crisp, vivid playback and live view filming, while also serving as a useful navigation tool.
- As well as serving as a touchscreen for more intuitive menu navigation and settings management, the display can be used while shooting, allowing you to pick a focal point or an area from which to establish the white balance. If you want to rapidly input notes, copyright information, or IPTC information, the screen may also serve as a keyboard.
- A tilting design is also included for improved visibility when filming from a variety of working angles, including extreme high and low ones.
In addition to a brilliant pentaprism optical viewfinder with 100 percent frame coverage and 1.0x magnification, the camera integrates an organic EL display system to deliver shooting information and allow for smooth control of camera settings without taking your attention away from the viewfinder.
- Additionally, the optical glass has been treated with improved coatings that increase brightness, contrast, and color neutrality, resulting in a more realistic viewing experience.
- The D500 is equipped with both an SD card port and a CFexpress Type B/XQD memory card slot, which enhances file-saving capabilities by enabling overflow recording, in-camera file duplication, and the option to separate raw and JPEG images across two cards.
Nikon D500 Specs
|MSRP||$2000/ £1729 (body only), $3069 / £2479 (w/16-80mm lens)|
|Body type||Mid-size SLR|
|Max resolution||5568 x 3712|
|Other resolutions||4176 x 2784, 2784 x 1856|
|Image ratio w:h||3:2|
|Effective pixels||21 megapixels|
|Sensor photodetectors||22 megapixels|
|Sensor size||APS-C (23.5 x 15.7 mm)|
|ISO||ISO 100 – 51200 (expandable to 50 – 1640000)|
|Boosted ISO (minimum)||50|
|Boosted ISO (maximum)||1640000|
|White balance presets||12|
|Custom white balance||Yes (5)|
|Uncompressed format||RAW + TIFF|
|JPEG quality levels||Fine, Normal, Basic|
|Autofocus||Contrast Detect (sensor)Phase DetectMulti-areaSelective single-pointTrackingSingleContinuousFace DetectionLive View|
|Number of focus points||153|
|Lens mount||Nikon F|
|Focal length multiplier||1.5×|
|Screen type||TFT LCD|
|Viewfinder type||Optical (pentaprism)|
|Viewfinder magnification||1× (0.67× 35mm Equiv.)|
|Minimum shutter speed||30 sec|
|Maximum shutter speed||1/8000 sec|
|Manual exposure mode||Yes|
|External flash||Yes (Hot-shoe, Wireless plus sync connector)|
|Flash modes||Auto, On, Off, Red-eye, Slow sync, Rear-curtain|
|Continuous drive||10.0 fps|
|Self-timer||Yes (2, 5, 10, or 20 sec)|
|Metering modes||MultiCenter-weight highlight-weightedSpot|
|Exposure compensation||±5 (at 1/3 EV, 1/2 EV steps)|
|AE Bracketing||(2, 3, 5, 7 frames at 1/3 EV, 1/2 EV, 2/3 EV, 1 EV, 2 EV steps)|
|WB Bracketing||Yes (2 or 9 frames in steps of 1, 2, or 3 mired)|
|Resolutions||4K (UHD) 30p/25p/24p, 1080/60p/50p/30p/25p/24p, 720/60p/50p|
|Storage types||SD/SDHC/SDXC (UHS-II compliant) + XQD|
|USB||USB 3.0 (5 GBit/sec)|
|Wireless notes||Wi-Fi with low energy Bluetooth|
|Remote control||Yes (Optional, wired or wireless )|
|Battery description||Lithium-Ion EN-EL15 rechargeable battery & charger|
|Battery Life (CIPA)||1240|
|Weight (inc. batteries)||860 g (1.90 lb / 30.34 oz)|
|Dimensions||147 x 115 x 81 mm (5.79 x 4.53 x 3.19″)|