It is rumored that Nikon is considering the release of its long-awaited DX semi-pro camera, the D400 in September/October, which would put it in the last quarter of the year when a lot of cameras are announced. For sports and wildlife shooters who have been hanging on for any news that the D400 will be coming out, this is potentially a bit of good news. The old D300s is getting long in the tooth with a 4 year period The D300s was released in 2009 and a replacement would have been expect in 2002 at the very latest. Most upgrades or new camera announcements to the semi-pro type take place every 2 years.
As a wildlife photographer, I've looked into the D800 as a reasonable cost alternative to my D300s and the possibility of going full-frame. However for action shots such as birds flying, one needs the framerate up and the D800 fell short on that with 5fps as opposed to 11 fps on the D4. The consumer grade full-frame cameras came no where near on the buffer space that one would be able to shoot at Continuous High mode. So with the retail price of the D4 at $5,899 or higher, the upgrade to a full-frame professional body was out of the question. Hence the reason I have been waiting for the D400.
I expect the D400 to have at least a framerate of 9fps with the battery grip (which I hope will be the MB-D10 - it is a pain in the butt to have to change battery grips every time you change cameras so the more unifying features that Nikon can sustain the better) and 7 fps without; a sizable buffer that will allow me to get at least 36 frames continuous before delay to write. In wildlife photography, one has to capture action shots and hopefully, the D400 will meet if not surpass wildlife photographer expectations.