Photos of the purported D40 have circulated in the webosphere, apparently signaling the inevitable debut of this budget digital SLR camera from Nikon.
The photos appeared briefly on a German website but were quickly pulled out, after a few early birds have downloaded the mug shots of the new DSLR. Nothing official yet, but the specs seem to suggest a 6.1-MP CCD image sensor, 3-point focusing, 2.5-inch LCD, ISO 200-1600, 3 metering modes and USB 2.0.
The specs suggest that Nikon is positioning the D40 even below the D50 and would price it accordingly. Nikon appears to be covering all bases at the entry-level of DSLRs: the D40 at the lowest end, followed by the D50, then the D70s, then the highly-acclaimed D80 and finally the D200 at the higher end. Whoa, Nikon! Give Pentax a sporting chance; they only have the K110D and the soon-to-be-out K10D.
Canon, of course, have had their very successful Rebel XT (EOS 350D), and if they lower its price to trump the D40, the Nikon bet will be no match to the very capable 350D. It will be interesting to watch a price fight here. Stay tuned for the next episodes.