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Nikon D1X vs D200

The Nikon D1X and the Nikon D200 are two digital cameras that were revealed to the public, respectively, in February 2001 and November 2005. Both are DSLR (Digital Single Lens Reflex) cameras that are equipped with an APS-C sensor. The D1X has a resolution of 5.9 megapixels, whereas the D200 provides 10 MP.

Below is an overview of the main specs of the two cameras as a starting point for the comparison.

Headline Specifications
Nikon D1X   Nikon D200
Nikon D1X Nikon D200
Digital single lens reflex Digital single lens reflex
Nikon F mount lenses Nikon F mount lenses
5.9 MP, APS-C Sensor 10 MP, APS-C Sensor
no Video no Video
ISO 125-800 (125-3200) ISO 100-1600 (100-3200)
Optical viewfinder Optical viewfinder
2.0" LCD, 120k dots 2.5" LCD, 230k dots
Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive) Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive)
3 shutter flaps per second 5 shutter flaps per second
Weathersealed bodyWeathersealed body
1200 shots per battery charge400 shots per battery charge
157 x 153 x 85 mm, 1100 g 147 x 113 x 74 mm, 920 g

Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Nikon D1X and the Nikon D200? Which one should you buy? Read on to find out how these two cameras compare with respect to their body size, their imaging sensors, their shooting features, their input-output connections, and their reception by expert reviewers.

Body comparison

The side-by-side display below illustrates the physical size and weight of the Nikon D1X and the Nikon D200. The two cameras are presented according to their relative size. Three consecutive perspectives from the front, the top, and the back are available. All width, height and depth measures are rounded to the nearest millimeter.

Size Nikon D1X vs Nikon D200
Compare D1X versus D200 top
Comparison D1X or D200 rear

If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Nikon D200 is considerably smaller (31 percent) than the Nikon D1X. Moreover, the D200 is markedly lighter (16 percent) than the D1X. In this context, it is worth noting that both cameras are splash and dust-proof and can, hence, be used in inclement weather conditions or harsh environments.

The above size and weight comparisons are to some extent incomplete since they do not consider the interchangeable lenses that both of these cameras require. In this particular case, both cameras feature the same lens mount, so that they can use the same lenses. You can compare the optics available in the Nikon Lens Catalog.

Concerning battery life, the D1X gets 1200 shots out of its EN-4 battery, while the D200 can take 400 images on a single charge of its EN-EL3e power pack. As can be seen in the images above, the D1X has a battery grip built in. This facilitates image-taking in portrait orientation and gives it additional battery power. In order to provide similar functionality for the D200, Nikon provides the MB-D200 vertical grip as an optional accessory (see here on eBay).

The table below summarizes the key physical specs of the two cameras alongside a broader set of comparators. If you want to switch the focus of the display and review another camera pair, just select a new right or left comparator from among the camera models in the table. Alternatively, you can also move across to the CAM-parator tool and choose from the broad selection of possible camera comparisons there.

Camera Body Specifications
  Camera
Model
Camera
Width
Camera
Height
Camera
Depth
Camera
Weight
Battery
Life
(CIPA)
Weather
Sealing
(yes/no)
Camera
Launch
(announced)
Launch
Price
(USD)
Street
Price
(USD)
Used
Price
(USD)
Camera
Model
 
Nikon D1X» 6.2 in 6.0 in 3.3 in 38.8 oz 1200 Y Feb 2001 5,999- i Nikon D1X
 
Nikon D200« 5.8 in 4.4 in 2.9 in 32.5 oz 400 Y Nov 2005 1,699- i Nikon D200
 
Nikon D4« » 6.3 in 6.2 in 3.6 in 47.3 oz 2600 Y Jan 2012 5,999- i Nikon D4
 
Nikon D300S« » 5.8 in 4.5 in 3.2 in 33.1 oz 950 Y Jul 2009 1,799- i Nikon D300S
 
Nikon D300« » 5.8 in 4.5 in 2.9 in 32.6 oz 1000 Y Aug 2007 1,799- i Nikon D300
 
Nikon D2Xs« » 6.2 in 5.9 in 3.4 in 44.2 oz 3800 Y Jun 2006 4,699- i Nikon D2Xs
 
Nikon D2X« » 6.2 in 5.9 in 3.4 in 44.2 oz 3800 Y Sep 2004 4,999- i Nikon D2X
 
Nikon D2H« » 6.2 in 5.9 in 3.4 in 37.7 oz 2900 Y Jul 2003 3,499- i Nikon D2H
 
Nikon D100« » 5.7 in 4.6 in 3.2 in 27.5 oz 370 n Feb 2002 1,999- i Nikon D100
 
Nikon D1H« » 6.2 in 6.0 in 3.3 in 38.8 oz 1200 Y Feb 2001 4,499- i Nikon D1H
 
Nikon D1« » 6.2 in 6.0 in 3.3 in 38.8 oz .. Y Jun 1999 5,499- i Nikon D1
Note: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.

The price is, of course, an important factor in any camera decision. The listed launch prices provide an indication of the market segment that the manufacturer of the cameras have been targeting. The D200 was launched at a markedly lower price (by 72 percent) than the D1X, which puts it into a different market segment. Usually, retail prices stay at first close to the launch price, but after several months, discounts become available. Later in the product cycle and, in particular, when the replacement model is about to appear, further discounting and stock clearance sales often push the camera price considerably down. Then, after the new model is out, very good deals can frequently be found on the pre-owned market.

 

Sensor comparison

The size of the sensor inside a digital camera is one of the key determinants of image quality. All other things equal, a large sensor will have larger individual pixel-units that offer better low-light sensitivity, wider dynamic range, and richer color-depth than smaller pixels in a sensor of the same technological generation. Furthermore, a large sensor camera will give the photographer more possibilities to use shallow depth-of-field in order to isolate a subject from the background. On the downside, larger sensors are more costly to manufacture and tend to lead to bigger and heavier cameras and lenses.

Both cameras under consideration feature an APS-C sensor, but their sensors differ slightly in size. The sensor area in the D200 is 1 percent bigger. They nevertheless have the same format factor of 1.5. Both cameras have a native aspect ratio (sensor width to sensor height) of 3:2.

Nikon D1X and Nikon D200 sensor measures

With 10MP, the D200 offers a higher resolution than the D1X (5.9MP), but the D200 has smaller individual pixels (pixel pitch of 6.11μm versus 7.92μm for the D1X). Yet, the D200 is a much more recent model (by 4 years and 8 months) than the D1X, and its sensor will have benefitted from technological advances during this time that enhance the light gathering capacity of its pixel-units.

The resolution advantage of the Nikon D200 implies greater flexibility for cropping images or the possibility to print larger pictures. The maximum print size of the D200 for good quality output (200 dots per inch) amounts to 19.4 x 13 inch or 49.2 x 32.9 cm, for very good quality (250 dpi) 15.5 x 10.4 inch or 39.3 x 26.3 cm, and for excellent quality (300 dpi) 12.9 x 8.6 inch or 32.8 x 21.9 cm. The corresponding values for the Nikon D1X are 15 x 9.8 inch or 38.2 x 24.9 cm for good quality, 12 x 7.8 inch or 30.6 x 19.9 cm for very good quality, and 10 x 6.5 inch or 25.5 x 16.6 cm for excellent quality prints.

The Nikon D1X has a native sensitivity range from ISO 125 to ISO 800, which can be extended to ISO 125-3200. The corresponding ISO settings for the Nikon D200 are ISO 100 to ISO 1600, with the possibility to increase the ISO range to 100-3200.

D1X versus D200 MP

Consistent information on actual sensor performance is available from DXO Mark for many cameras. This service assesses and scores the color depth ("DXO Portrait"), dynamic range ("DXO Landscape"), and low-light sensitivity ("DXO Sports") of camera sensors, and also publishes an overall camera score. The table below summarizes the physical sensor characteristics and sensor quality findings and compares them across a set of similar cameras.

Sensor Characteristics
  Camera
Model
Sensor
Class
Resolution
(MP)
Horiz.
Pixels
Vert.
Pixels
Video
Format
DXO
Portrait
DXO
Landscape
DXO
Sports
DXO
Overall
Camera
Model
 
Nikon D1X» APS-C 5.9 3008 1960-----Nikon D1X
 
Nikon D200« APS-C 10.0 3872 2592-22.311.558364Nikon D200
 
Nikon D4« » Full Frame 16.2 4928 32801080/30p24.713.1296589Nikon D4
 
Nikon D300S« » APS-C 12.2 4288 2848720/24p22.512.278770Nikon D300S
 
Nikon D300« » APS-C 12.2 4288 2848-22.112.067967Nikon D300
 
Nikon D2Xs« » APS-C 12.2 4288 2848-22.210.948959Nikon D2Xs
 
Nikon D2X« » APS-C 12.2 4288 2848-22.110.947659Nikon D2X
 
Nikon D2H« » APS-C 4.0 2464 1632-18.910.035240Nikon D2H
 
Nikon D100« » APS-C 6.0 3008 2000-----Nikon D100
 
Nikon D1H« » APS-C 2.6 2000 1312-----Nikon D1H
 
Nikon D1« » APS-C 2.6 2000 1312-----Nikon D1
Neither the D1X nor the D200 offer Live View, so that they cannot project the live image that the sensor receives onto the rear screen. Moreover, both cameras are still-image focused and cannot record videos.
 

Feature comparison

Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a variety of features. The D1X and the D200 are similar in the sense that both have an optical viewfinder. The latter is useful for getting a clear image for framing even in brightly lit environments. The viewfinder in the D1X offers a wider field of view (96%) than the one in the D200 (95%), so that a larger proportion of the captured image is visible in the finder. On the other hand, the viewfinder of the D200 has a higher magnification (0.63x vs 0.53x), so that the size of the image transmitted appears closer to the size seen with the naked human eye. The table below summarizes some of the other core capabilities of the Nikon D1X and Nikon D200 in connection with corresponding information for a sample of similar cameras.

Core Features
  Camera
Model
Viewfinder
(Type or
'000 dots)
Control
Panel
(yes/no)
LCD
Size
(inch)
LCD
Resolution
('000 dots)
LCD
Attach-
ment
Touch
Screen
(yes/no)
Mech
Shutter
Speed
Shutter
Flaps
(1/sec)
Built-in
Flash
(yes/no)
Built-in
Image
Stab
Camera
Model
 
Nikon D1X»optical Y 2.0 120 fixed n 1/16000s 3.0 n n Nikon D1X
 
Nikon D200«optical Y 2.5 230 fixed n 1/8000s 5.0 Y n Nikon D200
 
Nikon D4« »optical Y 3.2 921 fixed n 1/8000s 11.0 n n Nikon D4
 
Nikon D300S« »optical Y 3.0 920 fixed n 1/8000s 7.0 Y n Nikon D300S
 
Nikon D300« »optical Y 3.0 922 fixed n 1/8000s 6.0 Y n Nikon D300
 
Nikon D2Xs« »optical Y 2.5 230 fixed n 1/8000s 5.0 n n Nikon D2Xs
 
Nikon D2X« »optical Y 2.5 235 fixed n 1/8000s 5.0 n n Nikon D2X
 
Nikon D2H« »optical Y 2.5 211 fixed n 1/8000s 8.0 n n Nikon D2H
 
Nikon D100« »optical Y 1.8 118 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n Nikon D100
 
Nikon D1H« »optical Y 2.0 120 fixed n 1/16000s 5.0 n n Nikon D1H
 
Nikon D1« »optical Y 2.0 120 fixed n 1/16000s 1.5 n n Nikon D1

One difference between the cameras concerns the presence of an on-board flash. The D200 has one, while the D1X does not. While the built-in flash of the D200 is not very powerful, it can at times be useful as a fill-in light.

The Nikon D200 has an intervalometer built-in. This enables the photographer to capture time lapse sequences, such as flower blooming, a sunset or moon rise, without purchasing an external camera trigger and related software.

Concerning the storage of imaging data, both the D1X and the D200 write their files to Compact Flash cards.

 

Connectivity comparison

For some imaging applications, the extent to which a camera can communicate with its environment can be an important aspect in the camera decision process. The table below provides an overview of the connectivity of the Nikon D1X and Nikon D200 and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.

Input-Output Connections
  Camera
Model
Hotshoe
Port
Internal
Microphone
Internal
Speaker
Microphone
Port
Headphone
Port
HDMI
Port
USB
Type
WiFi
Support
NFC
Support
Bluetooth
Support
Camera
Model
 
Nikon D1X»Y-----FW---Nikon D1X
 
Nikon D200«Y-----2.0---Nikon D200
 
Nikon D4« »Ymonomono--micro2.0---Nikon D4
 
Nikon D300S« »YstereomonoY-mini2.0---Nikon D300S
 
Nikon D300« »Y----mini2.0---Nikon D300
 
Nikon D2Xs« »Y-----2.0---Nikon D2Xs
 
Nikon D2X« »Y-----2.0---Nikon D2X
 
Nikon D2H« »Y-----2.0---Nikon D2H
 
Nikon D100« »Y-----1.1---Nikon D100
 
Nikon D1H« »Y-----FW---Nikon D1H
 
Nikon D1« »Y-----FW---Nikon D1

Both cameras feature a PC Sync terminal to control professional strobe lights, which will be appreciated by studio photographers.

Both the D1X and the D200 have been discontinued, but can regularly be found used on eBay. The D1X was replaced by the Nikon D2X, while the D200 was followed by the Nikon D300. Further information on the two cameras (e.g. user guides, manuals), as well as related accessories, can be found on the official Nikon website.


Review summary

So what is the bottom line? Which of the two cameras – the Nikon D1X or the Nikon D200 – has the upper hand? Is one clearly better than the other? Below is a summary of the relative strengths of each of the two contestants.


Advantages of the Nikon D1X:

  • More complete view: Has a viewfinder with a larger field of view (96% vs 95%).
  • Faster shutter: Has higher mechanical shutter speed (1/16000s vs 1/8000s) to freeze action.
  • More portrait friendly: Features an integrated vertical grip for easier portrait shooting.
  • Longer lasting: Can take more shots (1200 versus 400) on a single battery charge.
  • More heavily discounted: Has been available for much longer (launched in February 2001).


Reasons to prefer the Nikon D200:

  • More detail: Has more megapixels (10 vs 5.9MP), which boosts linear resolution by 30%.
  • Larger viewfinder image: Features a viewfinder with a higher magnification (0.63x vs 0.53x).
  • Larger screen: Has a bigger rear LCD (2.5" vs 2.0") for image review and settings control.
  • More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (230k vs 120k dots).
  • Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (5 vs 3 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
  • Easier time-lapse photography: Has an intervalometer built-in for low frequency shooting.
  • More compact: Is smaller (147x113mm vs 157x153mm) and will fit more readily into a bag.
  • Less heavy: Has a lower weight (by 180g or 16 percent) and is thus easier to take along.
  • Easier fill-in: Has a small integrated flash to brighten shadows of backlit subjects.
  • More affordable: Was introduced into a lower priced category (72 percent cheaper at launch).
  • More modern: Reflects 4 years and 8 months of technical progress since the D1X launch.

If the count of individual advantages (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the D200 is the clear winner of the contest (11 : 5 points). However, the relevance of individual strengths will vary across photographers, so that you might want to apply your own weighing scheme to the summary points when reflecting and deciding on a new camera. A professional sports photographer will view the differences between cameras in a way that diverges from the perspective of a street photog, and a person interested in family portraits has distinct needs from a landscape shooter. Hence, the decision which camera is best and worth buying is often a very personal one.

D1X 05:11 D200

How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Nikon D1X and the Nikon D200 place the cameras among the top in their class? Find out in the latest Best DSLR Camera listing whether the two cameras rank among the cream of the crop.

In any case, while the comparison of technical specifications can provide a useful overview of the capabilities of different cameras, it remains partial and cannot reveal, for example, the shooting experience and imaging performance when actually working with the D1X or the D200. User reviews that are available, for instance, at amazon can sometimes shed light on these issues, but such feedback is all too often partial, inconsistent, and inaccurate.

Expert reviews

This is why expert reviews are important. The following table reports the overall ratings of the cameras as published by some of the major camera review sites (cameralabs, dpreview, ephotozine, imaging-resource, and photographyblog). As can be seen, the professional reviewers agree in many cases on the quality of different cameras, but sometimes their assessments diverge, reinforcing the earlier point that a camera decision is often a very personal choice.

Review Scores
  Camera
Model
cameralabs dpreview ephotozine imaging-resource photographyblog Camera
Launch
(announced)
Launch
Price
(USD)
Street
Price
(USD)
Used
Price
(USD)
Camera
Model
 
Nikon D1X»-+ +-o- Feb 2001 5,999- i Nikon D1X
 
Nikon D200«+ ++ +o5/5- Nov 2005 1,699- i Nikon D200
 
Nikon D4« »--4.5/5-4.5/5 Jan 2012 5,999- i Nikon D4
 
Nikon D300S« »+ +82/1004/55/54.5/5 Jul 2009 1,799- i Nikon D300S
 
Nikon D300« »+ ++ +5/5o4.5/5 Aug 2007 1,799- i Nikon D300
 
Nikon D2Xs« »---o- Jun 2006 4,699- i Nikon D2Xs
 
Nikon D2X« »-+ +-o- Sep 2004 4,999- i Nikon D2X
 
Nikon D2H« »-+ +-o- Jul 2003 3,499- i Nikon D2H
 
Nikon D100« »-+ +oo- Feb 2002 1,999- i Nikon D100
 
Nikon D1H« »-+ +-o- Feb 2001 4,499- i Nikon D1H
 
Nikon D1« »-+ +--- Jun 1999 5,499- i Nikon D1
Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (-) not available.

The review scores listed above should be treated with care, though. The ratings are only valid when referring to cameras in the same category and of the same age. Thus, a score needs to be put into the context of the launch date and the launch price of the camera, and comparing ratings of very distinct cameras or ones that are far apart in terms of their release date have little meaning. It should also be noted that some of the review sites have over time altered the way they render their verdicts.

Nikon D1X:
Check Ebay offers
Nikon D200:
Check Ebay offers

Other camera comparisons

Did this review help to inform your camera decision process? In case you are interested in seeing how other cameras pair up, just make a corresponding selection in the search boxes below. There is also a set of direct links to comparison reviews that other users of the CAM-parator app explored.

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    Specifications: Nikon D1X vs Nikon D200

    Below is a side-by-side comparison of the specs of the two cameras to facilitate a quick review of their differences and common features.

    Camera Specifications
    Camera Model Nikon D1X Nikon D200
    Camera Type Digital single lens reflex Digital single lens reflex
    Camera Lens Nikon F mount lenses Nikon F mount lenses
    Launch Date February 2001 November 2005
    Launch Price USD 5999 USD 1699
    Sensor Specs Nikon D1X Nikon D200
    Sensor Technology CCD CCD
    Sensor Format APS-C Sensor APS-C Sensor
    Sensor Size 23.7 x 15.6 mm 23.6 x 15.8 mm
    Sensor Area 369.72 mm2 372.88 mm2
    Sensor Diagonal 28.4 mm 28.4 mm
    Crop Factor 1.5x 1.5x
    Sensor Resolution 5.9 Megapixels 10 Megapixels
    Image Resolution 3008 x 1960 pixels 3872 x 2592 pixels
    Pixel Pitch 7.92 μm 6.11 μm
    Pixel Density 1.59 MP/cm2 2.69 MP/cm2
    Moiré control Anti-Alias filter Anti-Alias filter
    Movie Capability no Video no Video
    ISO Setting 125-800 ISO 100-1600 ISO
    ISO Boost 125-3200 ISO 100-3200 ISO
    DXO Sensor Quality (score) .. 64
    DXO Color Depth (bits) .. 22.3
    DXO Dynamic Range (EV) .. 11.5
    DXO Low Light (ISO) .. 583
    Screen Specs Nikon D1X Nikon D200
    Viewfinder Type Optical viewfinder Optical viewfinder
    Viewfinder Field of View 96% 95%
    Viewfinder Magnification 0.53x 0.63x
    Top-Level Screen Control Panel Control Panel
    Rear LCD Size 2.0 inch 2.5 inch
    LCD Resolution 120k dots 230k dots
    LCD Attachment Fixed screen Fixed screen
    Shooting Specs Nikon D1X Nikon D200
    Autofocus System Phase-detect AF Phase-detect AF
    Continuous Shooting 3 shutter flaps/s 5 shutter flaps/s
    Time-Lapse Photographyno IntervalometerIntervalometer built-in
    Fill Flash no On-Board Flash Build-in Flash
    Storage Medium CF cards CF cards
    Second Storage Option Single card slot Single card slot
    Connectivity Specs Nikon D1X Nikon D200
    External Flash Hotshoe Hotshoe
    Studio Flash PC Sync socket PC Sync socket
    USB Connector Firewire USB 2.0
    HDMI Port no HDMI no HDMI
    Wifi Support no Wifi no Wifi
    Body Specs Nikon D1X Nikon D200
    Environmental SealingWeathersealed bodyWeathersealed body
    Battery Type EN-4 EN-EL3e
    Battery Life (CIPA)1200 shots per charge400 shots per charge
    Body Dimensions 157 x 153 x 85 mm
    (6.2 x 6.0 x 3.3 in)
    147 x 113 x 74 mm
    (5.8 x 4.4 x 2.9 in)
    Camera Weight 1100 g (38.8 oz) 920 g (32.5 oz)

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