Nikon wheels out the DSLR big guns

This autumn is squaring up to be the big DSLR shoot off. The two giants of the game, Nikon and Canon have both lined up two new top-end cams. In the C

This autumn is squaring up to be the big DSLR shoot off. The two giants of the game, Nikon and Canon have both lined up two new top-end cams. In the Canon corner is the 10.1MP EOS-1D Mark III and 10.1MP 40D. In the Nikon camp is the new 12.1MP D3 and 12.3MP D300 (pictured).Both sides look pretty formidable. The pro D3, with 9fps, can't quite match the 1D's machine-gun like 10fps burst mode but it trumps it with extra megapixels and a roomy full-frame sensor that should seriously cut down on noise. It also gets extremely fast auto focus and shutter response times thanks to the newly branded EXPEED image processor.Throw in a new 51-point AF sensor, dual CF compartments, a 3in LCD monitor with Live View that will work with autofocus (unlike on the 1D) and HDMI for hooking up to your hi-def telly and you could say that Canon's got some serious competition on its hands.No less awesome is the D300, which will sit alongside the D200 at the semi-pro/serious enthusiast end of the range. Remarkably it borrows nearly all the features of its pro sibling, leaving out just the dual CF slots and dropping the burst rate to a still sterling 6fps.With the new Sony Alphas due in soon, it's going to be one hell of a fight to claim the top DSLR spot.EssentialsNikon D3, D300Price: £3400, £1300On sale: NovemberContact: NikonRelated stories:Canon debuts octuplet of new camsNew Sony Alpha DSLRs on trackNikon's baby DSLR makes it to 10