Nikon Pro DSLR (D4?) Patent Diagrams

Nikon D4?

A couple of recent Nikon patent applications show off some new features and diagrams for pro-level DSLRs.

In this patent application (filed in May 2011), Nikon details a dust-reduction feature using the above model in its diagrams.  The key feature is basically a hole at the bottom of the mirror box that is used to catch dust when the mirror swings up just before the shutter opens.

Nikon Mirror Box Patent

Nikon claims this feature captures reduces 50% of sensor dust after 10,000 shutter actuations.

Another Nikon patent application (filed in June 2011), shows off a new mirror assembly that allows the sub-mirror to rotate back into focusing position independently of the main mirror.  Essentially, this method subjects the sub-mirror to less vibration caused by the main mirror’s return.

Nikon Mirror Assembly

According to Nikon’s patent claims, this should speed up continuous shooting AF acquisition.  Perhaps this could push the D4 over the 10fps barrier?  Even if we don’t get any substantial max fps increase, it would hopefully push the Focus Priority shot speed (under AF-C Focus Selection) up higher.  The shot-to-shot speed in Focus Priority mode tends to slow way down on the D3S in some situations; however, the accuracy is unparalleled in most cases.

As with all patents, there’s no guarantee that any of the tech outlined therein will make it into upcoming camera models.  However, these two patent applications could prove to be very important to upcoming Nikon cameras (even if they are a little boring on the sexy-tech side of things).



  1. says

    As much as I like the new series 1 cameras, and I accept that sensors have become so good now that the new diddy size does the job well, I still think that Nikon could do with a mirrorless full-frame camera – or even better – as I have said before – a 25 x 35mm format: very close to A4. The Nikkor lenses would still cover the same circle as 24 x36. The main thing is that it would be more affordable than an SLR.

  2. says

    Nikon won’t risk mirrorless Full Frame camera simply because it’d kill it’s DSLRs to a large degree, or at least: Nikon thinks so. Especially if it’d be more affordable than the DSLR. For now we can’t see even a cheap full-frame camera cause big companies are afraid it will cut their (already not big) sales of most expensive FF cameras.

    One hope I see for full frame mirrorless is… Leica. For many various economical reasons they are most likely to present such system.

  3. Zombie says

    So when all the dust drops down into that “hole” at the bottom of the mirrorbox, then what?

    How will the dust get out of the camera? Perhaps Dyson will make an attachment for one of their vacuum cleaners.

    Forget mirrorless – Nikon is deep into the standard DSLR format. I hope they make a FF-18mp DSLR that combines the best attributes of the D3S and D3X – with whatever techno. updates may be available.