The D1X has only been shipping for a month, and the D1H is barely available at all, but the obvious next question is, "What about the D1?"

For those who already have one or more D1 bodies, it's a question of whether to keep them as backups or sell them on the used market.

For those who haven't taken the digital plunge the decision is whether the money saved by buying a D1 could then be spent on other things rather than shelling out for a D1H or D1X.

First, and most important, nearly 50,000 photographers, many of them pros, have been using the D1. D1 photos have appeared in dozens if not hundreds of publications. And just because there are two new versions doesn't mean the original won't work as well!

So if you're interested in getting started with a pro digital camera it's a great way to go. Since all digital cameras will decrease in value much faster than you're used to with film cameras, it may well make sense to do your initial work with a less expensive body and then learn what is most important for you. It also saves you from having to decide between the X and the H!

If you've already mastered the foibles of the D1, learning how to use "A" mode for when TTL flash doesn't work, how to correct the sometimes thin color, and the magic of setting white balance, then you've overcome many of its limitations and may be just as happy continuing to use it rather than venturing into the unknown.

However, there is no question that for those who need the extra pixels of the D1X for large print reproduction or the blazing speed of the 1H to capture rapidly developing action they have plenty to offer. Nikon has also built in a reasonable color space with Adobe RGB so that your workflow can be one step shorter. Perhaps most importantly Nikon has also cleaned up many little things about the cameras. LCD previews are immediate and cover 100% of the image, CSM menus are available on the LCD, and a few of the buttons have been moved to sightly more logical places.

--David Cardinal, 8/6/01