The "skew" evident in this clip is objectionable mainly because of the inept hand-holding of the operator. Only very fast-moving action would exhibit this amount of vertical skew in normal use.
IMHO, the D90 will be able to provide some very nice looking video indeed, given careful, competent users.
I think we're seeing just the very beginning of this new capability. If only Nikon had included intervalometer and slow shutter functions, and true 720X1920 24P, this new function would be really fun to use.
I just bought the d90 for an upcoming project. The project is primarily still advertising photography, but I want some semi locked down motion imagery and I want it in low light, wide open with lots of fall off, which is the reason we will primarily use the D90 instead of a standard hdv cam.
I also have Canon 5d2's on order so the Nikon may go away after the Canons come in.
My take on the D-90 is not much different than Micheal's review, though I see a lot of great benifit to the camera.
To begin with the skew is really pronounced but only if you move fast or are working in hard vertical lines. Slower panning, or really, really fast panning and it shouldn't be noticeable. Smooth paning with a fluid head also helps.
The exposure lock allows you to set the exposure visually, lock it and then shoot.
I used only old Nikon manual lenses, (the 50 1.2 and the 35mm 1.4) and you can throw depth of field very nicely.
I assume the camera has some form of auto iso (gain) feature so when you go from a bright situation to a dark situation you see noise but nothing even close to what standard prosumer hdv cameras produce. I did a quick test in an almost dark room situation and the frame rate didn't change and get jerky and the gain was not unreasonable, once again nothing like standard hdv cams I've used in low lit and dark subjects.
Focusing is an art and I will put the camera on rails with a follow focus and see how that works, I assume it will work well.
I like focusing on the live view screen and it's so well detailed for me it's easier than looking through the viewfinder.
I did some stil focus tests with the 50 1.2 wide open and was more in focus on the live view than the viewfider. But maybe that's just me.
I guess right now, without really working the camera hard, I think I'm very impressed. It throws focus like a 35mm cinema camera, it doesn't require a letus, or any adpater which softens the images and the gain and noise in low light is good, once again much better than I've seen from anything before.
The one drawback is the skew which is just freaky when you first see it. Nothing you can't work around and actually you could probably make something quite cool out of it, but it is a limitation of sorts.
I took the 720p footage and uprezzed it though QT to full 1080 and it look good and to me, much better than what I'd seen from my 3 ccd canons.
The real upside to this little camera is how well it shoots stills. It really is an amazing still camera and for $900 it's more than amazing.