The Nikon D4S has been teased, displayed in a plastic case and now, it's official -- and we even got to play with it. There's a substantial list of what hasn't changed (the same 16.2-megapixel image size, to begin with), but if you're a high-level photographer already in possession of a D4 (or perhaps even a D3S), you'll be more interested in those differences. Firstly, while the sensor will offer the same sized images, but it's a newly developed piece of hardware, with a focus on better noise reduction. ISO now ranges from 100 - 25600, with its Hi4 setting cranking that up to a mind-boggling 409600. If you're currently handling a D4, you can also expect to see substantial noise reduction: the D4S' ISO 1600 will be comparable to the D4's ISO 800 setting.
Nikon's new DSLR also delivers changes to to the auto-focus system for both photos and video. Behind the lens, there's improvements to both the tracking system and the algorithms that govern how the D4S focuses. A new Group AF mode tracks five separate points, meaning that a moving subject (and even a moving photographer) should pose less of a threat to crisp imaging. On video, (where you can now capture uncompressed 1080p resolution at 60 frames) tracking has been bumped up to 11 frames per second on full auto-focus and exposure.
Hopefully fixing one of our major issues with the D4, the new model also comes with a more substantial battery pack, up from 2,000mAh to 2,500mAh. The new unit actually weighs more, but reductions on the D4S' body means it adds just seven ounces, total, over 2012's D4. Expect the camera to land on March 6th, and prepare your bank account for the hit: it's expected to retail for $6,500. We've got some early impressions and details on some minor hardware changes, including more substantial grips, right after the jump.