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Nikon shows unannounced pro DSLR on German site — is it the D800?

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An image of what looks to be the Nikon D800 has popped up on Nikon's German website.

nikon dslr_640
nikon dslr_640

Nikon's German website has been updated with some fresh images this morning, which now include the just-launched D4 among its stable of professional DSLRs. Nothing unusual about that, you might think, however the D4 isn't the only debutant in the image above. A closer inspection reveals that the fourth camera from the left is not part of any of Nikon's currently announced product lines. It features the same sort of downward-slanted shutter release key as the D4, it's bulkier than the D700, has an FX label denoting a full-frame sensor, and its (admittedly unreadable) model name is written at an angle instead of Nikon's usual horizontal orientation. The unconventional labeling matches up with an earlier leaked image of the D800 uncovered by Nikon Rumors, with that site also being first to spot this mysterious appearance on Nikon.de.

All we can surmise from this appearance is that Nikon did indeed plan to launch a D800 alongside the D4 — D700 owners have certainly had long enough to wait for an upgrade — but a last-minute decision was made to delay it. This may very well be as a result of the Thai floods that affected Nikon's supply chain or it may have been in response to technical challenges that the company was not able to overcome in time. Either way, the German webmasters clearly weren't provided with updated resources, so now we're gazing at an official image of what looks very likely to be the Nikon D800. It's certainly a new model of some description.