I've been wondering if Nikon's new D40 d-slr at $599 with a kit Zoom~Nikkor lens is a harbinger of the imminent death of the high-end prosumer digicam category. I'm wondering how much longer the all-in-one EVF cameras like the higher-end Sony can possibly continue to live on as d-slr prices continue to drop. I beleive that many customers in the high-end or "prosumer" all-in-one category have a high regard for the bottom line....the line right there in the checkbook register, or the line right there by the signature on the credit card slip at the store. Why would anybody pay $799 to $999 for an all-in-one camera with slowish autofocus and a sluggardly shutter when he could have a real interchangeable lens d-slr camera for $599?
If the new Nikon D40 with its kit wide-to-tele zoom lens at $599 does not signify the death of the high-end prosumer digicam as a category, it surely signals that no longer must one with only $600 to spend on his camera forever be locked into ONE LENS,permanently mounted onto what most people would call a "good camera". The D40 has an economical 6 Megapixel sensor size, which is ample for most people who would have bought a high-end digicam as recently as six months ago. Six Megapixels in a d-slr-grade CCD sensor allows the photographer to shoot a very favorable nummber of RAW or JPEG frames on even a 1-gigiabyte storage card. With good-quality lenses, 6 MP delivers a pretty good image up to 8x10 inches with careful technique. Consider the new price point Nikon has put its D40 at...Six megapixels, Six hundred dollars. In the summer of 2002, I payed $2400 for a the six megapixel FujiFilm S2 Pro d-slr body,with no lens whatsoever.