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Thread: What do you think about Nikon 1 J1 and Nikon 1 V1?

  1. #1

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    What do you think about Nikon 1 J1 and Nikon 1 V1?

    hey friends as nikon introduced new models this year..
    What do you think about Nikon 1 J1 and Nikon 1 V1..

  2. #2
    Moderator Dave Humphries's Avatar
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    re: What do you think about Nikon 1 J1 and Nikon 1 V1?

    Very little choice of lenses (so far)

    Personally, I think the sensor size, with a 2.7 crop factor, is getting too small for a serious creative photographer to be able to control Depth of Field (DoF) adequately.

    If you're used to DX/APS-C sensor cameras (c/f 1.5/1.6), it will be about two stops more DoF, imagine only being able to use a kit lens at f/7.1 to f/11 wide open for DoF control (I'm not talking about light gathering here, I know the lens says it is f/3.5 - f/5.6 which is comparable for exposure, but not DoF).

    However, if you're moving from a P&S, where crop factors are usually 5.5, then it may be ok if you still want something smaller than 'normal' DSLRs.

    I'd advise m4/3 as the smallest sensor size/format that is viable (crop factor 2).
    I recently bought a good P&S as a "carry anywhere" camera, but the small sensor 'too much DoF' issue drives me nuts.

    So if you've used a larger format, I'd say avoid the Nikon 1 series.
    If you haven't, they are an (expensive and limited) option.

    Cheers,
    Last edited by Dave Humphries; 4th March 2012 at 06:25 PM.

  3. #3

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    Re: What do you think about Nikon 1 J1 and Nikon 1 V1?

    Camera club hosted a Nikon rep recently. He also brought along with him an adaptor that allowed ANY DSLR Nikon lens to fit. SO the actual range of lenses for these CSC's is the same as for a regular DSLR.

    I find it interesting that Nikon promoted high ISO/low noise due to larger sites on the sensor for several years. It now seems that this focus has gone by the by (36MP on the 800's). Yes they still have good noise reduction software/hardware, but they have increased the range of options in line with everyone else.

    BTW, the rep was so enthusiastic about putting a 500mm lens (with adaptor) on CSC J/V1, making it equivalent to a 1080mm.
    Surely for birders, that's great (plus DoF at that length would be pretty low anyway, the increased DoF due to small sensor may not be a major issue). Wide angle and low DoF definitely an issue, but as a backup camera, pretty good.

    Graham
    (Sony shooter, so not biased)

  4. #4
    herbert's Avatar
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    Re: What do you think about Nikon 1 J1 and Nikon 1 V1?

    It is a mirrorless system with an electronic shutter. The real win in functionality is that it can shoot 30 full resolution frames in 0.5 seconds. This is a cheap way into high speed photography of moving objects, e.g. birds flitting around a bird feeder. I would love to have a play with one plus a Nikkor 70-200 f2.8 with adaptor for an afternoon. I am sure I could have some fun with this feature. If I had Nikon kit I might even buy a J1 because this sort of photography interests me.

    The price jump from the J1 to the V1 is very big. But I had a play with one in a camera shop and the viewfinder was very good. It was much faster than the Sony and Fuji X100 cameras I have played with. I was impressed unlike with the other cameras.

    The body has few button controls. Most stuff goes through the menu system. I think even changing shooting modes like manual, aperture or shutter priority. That is annoying. But it does make the body very small.

    Most of the other things seem similar to other compact mirrorless offerings. I agree that for depth of field control it is a poor option.

    Alex

  5. #5
    Black Pearl's Avatar
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    Re: What do you think about Nikon 1 J1 and Nikon 1 V1?

    Nikon did a LOT of market research before launching the 1 Series and very little of it was aimed at regular Nikon users. Thats not to say we should ignore it - I personally love the J1 and would have one at the drop of a hat if I had the spare cash - but really it is aimed at people who want to move up from a Point & Shoot but don't want the heap of stuff associated with a traditional 'System.'

    They want:

    Small - the J1 is about the same as a GF3/Pen Mini but its the lenses that give it an edge over other compact system cameras (CSC)...they are tiny. Go look at the 30-110mm, I'd rather lug that about than my 70-300mm any day.

    Fast - it will shoot before you fully press the button....I've played with it hundreds of times and its brilliant. Honest its a little gem that never misses a beat.

    Easy to use - most people moving up from a P&S are put off with all the buttons we demand on our DSLR's. They want a simple to use camera that can be mucked about with if they want to.....which most don't.

    Video - the one that gets the most het-up arguments when discussed on a modern DSLR. It is here to stay so just get over it, more and more people demand it and it can be very good when used correctly. In the 1 Series you can shoot Full HD....but....you can still take full resolution pictures while its doing so. I used one for my youngest birthday party last year. When he blew the three candles out I was able to shoot a great video clip that my wife and grandparents love but I was still able to capture the actual moment be gave it his all and out went the candles - my D300s couldn't do that and it cost four times as much.

    Quality - I left this to last as it causes the greatest concern. It is better than all compact digital cameras - full stop. No, its not as good as a 1.5x crop sensor camera but they are huge in comparison...as they aren't as good as a FF sensored camera and they in turn aren't as good as a medium format sensored camera, all of which get bigger - you get the picture. It is not aimed at traditional Nikon users - there I've said it again. Its not though so when you go searching and find them on some sites wailing and banging their heads against the wall is despair they just don't get it. Nikon were NEVER going to make a CSC with a big sensor as it would impact the sales of their DSLR's and when it comes to those it is all about market share. That is what drives share prices and that is what the people at the top care about.


    So.
    What do I think?

    I think it is the right product for the market it is aimed at and we sell them as fast as we can get them through the back door and onto the shop floor. I've had dozens of customers come back to have pictures printed and they all love their purchase. If you want the DoF, ISO etc of your current camera then you want a NEX. It is better quality - no arguments - but because of that sensor it has lenses the same size as a DSLR. On a tiny body they handle poorly (my opinion) and weigh a tonne. It is a CSC but only just. The Nikon is a CSC in every sense and brilliant for it.

  6. #6
    rpcrowe's Avatar
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    Re: What do you think about Nikon 1 J1 and Nikon 1 V1?

    IMO, a photographer can reach a point of diminishing returns when the cameras become pigmy models. I really think that, as in rifle shooting, you need an optimum amount of weight and bulk to be able to hold the camera steady despite built-in stabilization.

    I know that I can hold my new Panasonic TM900 video camera with better stability if I add a bracket which weighs a pound or two. The same would be true with the smaller still cameras but, IMO, you might as well work with a camera that has a larger sensor than to add some extra weight in the form or a bracket or handle...

    That said, I bought my wife a tiny-tiny Canon Elph 100HS camera for her to carry in her purse. We have not received it yet but she is very excited about the small size light weight and hot pink color. Of course, I judge cameras by other criteria...

    UPDATE>>>

    We have received the ELPH and my wife absolutely loves it! I personally would not touch it with a ten foot pole. I don't think that the image quality is equal to my old 1999 vintage Olympus C5050Z P&S camera. But, like I alluded to above, my wife really likes the size and the pink color. I don't know if it is true but, it has been alluded that some females will select a car due to the placement of the cup holder....

    Additionally, the ELPH doesn't have an eye level viewfinder (the Nikon J1 doesn't and the Nikon V1 does). if I had to shoot with an LCD viewfinder in order to shoot digital; I would still be happily shooting with my manual focus Canon SLR film cameras.
    Last edited by rpcrowe; 10th March 2012 at 03:23 PM.

  7. #7
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    Re: What do you think about Nikon 1 J1 and Nikon 1 V1?

    Quote Originally Posted by rpcrowe View Post
    IMO, a photographer can reach a point of diminishing returns when the cameras become pigmy models. I really think that, as in rifle shooting, you need an optimum amount of weight and bulk to be able to hold the camera steady despite built-in stabilization.

    I know that I can hold my new Panasonic TM900 video camera with better stability if I add a bracket which weighs a pound or two.

    That said, I bought my wife a tiny-tiny Canon Elph 100HS camera for her to carry in her purse. We have not received it yet but she is very excited about the small size light weight and hot pink color. Of course, I judge cameras by other criteria...
    Richard, I agree.... I spent years as a TV cameraman and witnesssed the emergence of so-called "portable lightweight" shoulder-mounted video cameras around the late '70s and early '80s. Actually they were anything but lightweight. They were bulky and heavy and appeared to get heavier by the hour! The one thing that was great about them though was exactly that stability effect you mention. When truly lightweight (domestic handycam styled) cameras appeared many years later, I found it almost impossible to hold a steady shot at anything other than the wide end of the lens. There is no doubt that the inertia of a significant mass lends useable stability to the operation. It's basic physics really.

    I too find today's "toy-cams" very difficult to use for anything serious as a result of the very low mass and also the minimalist (or nil) grasping points around their bodies to get a good grip on them with both hands.

    I have to add that I find it much more difficult to hold a steady shot when using a camera at arms length, as opposed to pressed firmly into my face, which is the modus operandi of almost all of today's compacts, as the optical viewfinder has virtually disappeared in favour of LCDs. For these reasons and quite a few others, some mentioned in this thread, I really don't consider many of today's compacts to be that useful in the field.

  8. #8

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    Re: What do you think about Nikon 1 J1 and Nikon 1 V1?

    I think Robin's comments are very accurate and fair. really good review!

    I've never used a J1 but have used a V1. I'd rather be given a V1 with the two kit zooms than say a d80 with the 18-55 and 55-200. High ISO noise is comparable with the 12mp m4/3 cameras from what i've seen. The view finder is decent, focus is very good and image quality is better than you would expect for the sensor size

    As Dave said much earlier the problem is DOF. For portraits you can buy the FT1 adapter and the 35 f1.8 or either of the AF-s 50's and you have a decent portrait lens but still that not the same as a dx or ff for DOF.

    There is a sort of roadmap about and there are fast primes coming (based on what nikon have said and some patents it is rumoured an 18 f1.4 (approx 48 mm ff) and a 32 f1.2 (approx 85ff) ). BUT it isn't a system.

    Micro 4/3 is a system and quite a good one. There are some fabulous lenses from Oly 12 f2, Oly 45 f1.8, Oly 9-18f4-5.6 and Panasonic 7-14f4, Pan 1 f2.5, Pan 20f1.7, Pan 25 f1.4, Pan 45 f2.8 macro and the 100-300.

    A Panasonic G3 can be had body only for 332 and to my mind is a bargain. The Panasonic GX1 and Olympus E-p3 are both relatively compact and you can get a View finder for both.

    The one downer for m4/3 is continuous auto-focus for fast moving objects like birds in flight.

    I do though think some of the bodies are too small. I wouldn't want something any smaller than a GX1/Ep3. but then I wouldn't buy a d4 or 1dx because for ME they are too big! if anyone wants to give me a d700/d800 or a 5dIII

    It's horses for courses, i was recently wandering around central London with a friend she with a dSLR and me with a V1 (2 kit lenses) and a Panasonic m4/3 with a pancake prime and I was a lot less encumbered! it all fit in jacket pockets. I may be off for a long weekend in Italy and the dSLR won't be coming!
    Last edited by thequacksoflife; 5th March 2012 at 08:19 PM. Reason: typo

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