Digital SLRs: Nikon D50
Nikon D50
Nikon D50 digital SLR cameraThe D50 features a new 6.1 effective megapixel Nikon DX Format CCD image sensor and a highly advanced image processing engine that team together to create truly faithful image files capable of significant enlargement, yet remain manageable in overall file size, making it easier to take and store more great pictures. These optimized components produce more consistent results, even under shooting conditions that challenge other digital cameras, such as when working with light-colored subjects or long exposure shots.

Distinguishing itself over lesser systems, the Nikon D50 is always ready to shoot when that special moment or expression presents itself. When the power is turned on, the camera is ready to shoot in just 0.2 seconds for near-instant readiness. The shutter's release lag time is also minimized for near-instant response that virtually eliminates a common frustration of digital photography.

Continuous shooting at 2.5 frames per second can be maintained for bursts of up to 137† pictures, making action photography a reality. Pictures taken are instantly processed and recorded to the photographer's compact SD (Secure Digital) memory card. A new USB 2.0 Hi-Speed interface supports faster transfer of images when connected to a compatible computer.

Shutter speed choices extend from 30 sec. to an action-stopping 1/4,000 sec. A high-speed flash sync speed up to 1/500 sec. makes great fill flash photography possible, and Nikon technology makes it automatic. A bulb setting is also included for long exposures. The shutter is designed to ensure fast curtain action for consistent operation and accurate, predictable results, even at high shutter speed settings. AUTO ISO maximizes available light by automatically setting ISO-equivalent sensitivity across the available range of 200 to 1600. D50 photographers can also opt to set the ISO sensitivity manually for personal control.

The D50’s 5-area autofocus system inherits Nikon's proven cross-type center sensor, broad frame coverage, and class-leading low light detection found only in the award-winning Nikon D70 camera, and delivers even greater AF precision with fast, more consistent subject acquisition and improved focus tracking. The new system adopts AF-A mode for smooth automated operation that switches between AF-S (single-servo autofocus) and AF-C (continuous-servo autofocus) depending on the movement of the subject in the framed shot. An AF-assist illuminator is also included, which helps maximize performance when shooting in low lighting conditions.

The D50 produces consistently natural coloration by measuring the entire frame of the shot and matching white balance to the light source. Advanced auto white balance handles most lighting situations, but the flexible options include a choice of six specific manual settings, white balance bracketing for added creative choice of results, as well as a preset option for using a gray or white object as a calibrating reference under mixed lighting conditions.

Nikon's new 3D Color Matrix Metering II ensures accurate exposure control in most types of lighting situations by automatically comparing input from its frame-wide 420-pixel sensor for each scene to a large onboard database of over 30,000 scenes from actual photography. Professionals and amateurs alike rely on Nikon's exclusive light metering technologies that produce ideal exposures instantly. Newly developed exposure evaluation methods detect highlights and shadows in the frame, and compensate for them to help minimize under- or over-exposure by comparing the lighting pattern of the frame with the onboard database of scenes, thus enhancing performance for more accurate and consistent exposures.

A key advantage and one source of the fun associated with Nikon digital SLR photography is the ability to take advantage of the creative possibilities offered by interchangeable lenses. The new D50 offers seamless compatibility with Nikon's extensive family of high-performance AF Nikkor lenses, as well as the expanding family of digital-dedicated DX Nikkor lenses, providing superb color reproduction, razor-sharp image clarity and fast and accurate autofocus performance.

The compact, light-weight design of the new D50 makes it easy to carry on any outing, while its body contours and easily accessible controls provide handling efficiency and easy operation. Newly designed on-screen menus present clear and helpful user information in plain language on the D50's large 2.0-inch LCD monitor, and intuitive help dialogs are available for on-the-spot reference to the respective menu selections. The high-capacity rechargeable lithium-ion battery helps extend mobility and convenience by delivering the power to shoot up to 2,000 images†† on a single charge.

The D50 is an outstanding performer, right down to its diverse playback options, versatile custom settings, USB 2.0 Hi-Speed interface for easy connectivity or direct printing to any PictBridge compatible printer with in-camera page setup, and Nikon's complimentary PictureProject software that will extend anyone’s photographic experience with easy image transfers, effective image organization and editing, creative page layout design, plus printing and sharing. PictureProject’s new version 1.5 provides customers with an exceptional added value topped only by its excellent performance.

These inherit advantages combine with the empowering and creatively inspiring components of Nikon's Total Imaging System, including high-quality AF and DX Nikkor lenses, the SB-800 and SB-600 Speedlights, which enable use of Nikon's Creative Lighting System, as well as versatile software options, to deliver a new level of operating ease, expanded creative possibilities, and pure enjoyment. The Nikon D50 presents the perfect opportunity for anyone to start enjoying the advantages of Nikon digital SLR photography today.

D50 specifications:
Camera Type
Single Lens Reflex (SLR)
Effective Pixels
6.1 million
CCD 23.7 x 15.6 mm; total pixels; 6.24 million
Image size (pixels)
·3008 x 2000 (large)
·2256 x 1496 (medium)
·1504 x 1000 (small)
Lens mount
Nikon F mount (with AF coupling and AF contacts)

Compatible lenses

Type G or D AF Nikkor
All functions supported
Micro Nikkor 85mm f/2.8D
All functions supported except autofocus and exposure modes
Other AF Nikkor
All functions supported except 3D color matrix metering II
AI-P Nikkor
All functions supported except 3D color matrix metering II and autofocus
Can be used in mode M, but exposure meter does not function; electronic range finder can be used if maximum aperture is f/5.6 or faster
Picture angle
Equivalent in 35-mm format is approximately 1.5 times lens focal length
Fixed-eyelevel penta-Dach-mirror type
Diopter adjustment
18mm (-1.0m-1)
Focusing screen
Type B BriteView clear matte screen Mark V with superimposed focus brackets and On-Demand grid lines
Frame coverage
Approximately 95% of lens (vertical and horizontal)
Approximately 0.75x (50-mm lens at infinity;-1.0m-1)
Reflex mirror
Quick return
Lens aperture
Instant return with depth-of-field preview
Focus-area selection
Can be selected from 5 focus areas
Lens servo
·Autofocus (AF): Instant single-servo AF (AF-S); continuous servo AF (AF-C); auto AF-S/AF-C selection (AF-A); predictive focus tracking automatically activated according to subject status
·Manual focus (M)
TTL phase detection by Nikon Multi-CAM900 autofocus module with AF-assist illuminator (range approximately 0.5-3.0m/1.8”-9’10”)
Detection range
-1-+19EV (ISO 100 at 20oC/68oF)
AF-area mode
Single-area AF, dynamic-area AF, dynamic-area AF with closest subject priority
Focus lock
Focus can be locked by pressing shutter-release button halfway (single-servo AF) or by pressing AE-L/AF-L button


Three-mode through-the-lens (TTL) exposure metering
3D color matrix metering (type G and D lenses); color matrix metering (other CPU lenses); metering performed by 420-segment RGB sensor
Weight of 75% given to 6, 8, 10, or 12-mm circle in centre of frame
Meters 3.5-mm circle (about2.5% of frame) centered on active focus area
Range (ISO 100 equivalent f/1.4 lens, 20oC/68oF)
0-20 EV (3D color matrix or center-weighted metering)
2-20 EV (spot metering)
Exposure meter coupling
CPU coupling
Exposure control
Operating mode
Digital Vari-Program (auto, portrait, landscape, close up, sports, night landscape, night portrait, programmed auto (P) with flexible program; shutter-priority auto (S); aperture priority auto (A); manual (M)
Exposure compensation
-5-+5 EV in increments of 1/3 or ½ EV
Exposure and/or flash bracketing (up to ± 2EV over 3 exposures)
Exposure lock
Luminosity locked at detected value with AE-L/AF-L button
Combined mechanical and CCD electronic shutter
30 – 1/4000 s in step of 1/3 or ½ EV, bulb, remote
200 – 1600 (ISO equivalent) in steps of 1/3 EV
White balance
Auto (TTL white balance with 420 pixels RGB sensor), six manual modes with fine tuning, preset white balance
3 exposures in increments of 1, 2 or 3
Built in Speedlight
Digital Vari-Program (auto, portrait, close up, night landscape: auto flash with auto pop-up
P, S, A, M: manual pop-up with button release
Guide number
(m/ft at 20oC/68oF)
·ISO 200: approximately 15/49 (manual 17/56)
·ISO 100: approximately 11/36 (manual 12/39)


Sync control
X-contact only; flash synchronization at up to 1/500 s
Flash control
TTL flash control by 420 segment RGB sensor (CPU lenses only)
·Built-in Speedlight: I-TTL balanced fill-flash for digital SLR, or standard i-TTL flash for digital SLR (spot metering or mode dial set to M)
·SB-800 or 600: i-TTL balanced fill-flash for digital SLR, or standard i-TTL flash for digital SLR (spot metering)
Auto aperture
Available with SB-800 with CPU lens
Non-TTL auto
Available with such Speedlights as SB-800, 80DX, 28DX, 28, 27, and 22s
Range-priority manual
Available with SB-800
Sync modes
·Auto, portrait, close up: front curtain sync, red-eye reduction
·Night portrait: slow sync, slow sync with red-eye reduction
·Landscape, sports, night landscape: front curtain sync and red-eye reduction with optional Speedlights
·P, S, A, M: front curtain sync, slow sync, rear-curtain sync, red-eye reduction, slow sync with red-eye reduction
Flash compensation
-3-+ 1EV in increments of 1/3 or ½ EV
Flash-ready indicator
Not mentioned
Accessory shoe
Standard ISO hot-shoe contact with safety lock
Creative Lighting System
Supports Flash color Information Communication and FV lock with built-in Speedlight, SB-800, and SB-600. SB-800 and 600 also support Advance Wireless Lighting


SD (Secure Digital) memory cards
File system
Compliant with Design Rule for Camera File System (DCF) 2.0 and Digital Print Order Format (DCF) 2.0 and Digital Print Order Format (DPOF)
NEF (RAW): compressed 12-bit
JPEG: JPEG baseline-compliant
Electronically controlled timer with 2 – 20s duration
When CPU lens is attached, lens aperture can be stopped down to value selected by user (A and M modes) or valve selected by camera (Digital Vari-Program, P, and S modes)
2.0”, 130,000-dot, low-temperature polysilicon TFT LCD with brightness adjustment.
Video output
Can be selected from NTSC or PAL
External interface
USB 2.0 Hi-speed
Tripod socket
¼” (ISO)
Firmware upgrades
Firmware can be upgrade by the user
Supported languages
Chinese (simplified), Dutch, English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Spanish, Swedish (Not mentioned in the D70 user manual)
Power source
·One rechargeable EN-EL3 (1400maH, 2000 shots) Li-ion battery; charging voltage (MH-18a quick charger or optional MH-19 multi charger): 7.4 V DC
·EH-5 AC adaptor (available separately)
Dimensions (WxHxD)
Approximately 133 x 102 x 76mm (5.2” x 4.0” x 3.0”)
Approximately 540g (1lb 3oz) without battery, memory card, body cap, or monitor
Operating environment
0 – 40oC (32-104oF)
Less than 85% (no condensation)

Digital SLRs
Nikon D100
Nikon D70
Nikon D70s
Nikon D2Hs
Nikon D2X
Pentax *ist DL
Canon EOS 350D / Digital Rebel XT
Canon EOS 20D
see also: images, Cities, advertise with us
Travel Utilities