Friday, 28 October 2011

The Nikon 1 series

I've been eyeing this off for some time and wondering if its a crock of under done technology in an over done marketing dressing.

The fact that the Panasonic G1 took ages to get any sort of market traction yet seems to be a screamingly better package for less money seems to cement that the Nikon is just showing what can be done with an extensive marketing network and public ignorance of what anything means.

I am tempted to believe that there may be something in the entire system, particularly with the fast AF and the availablity of interchangable lenses.

The sensor is smaller than the 4/3 (as seen above) but is still much larger than the old "pro-sumer" market of digital cameras (such as the Canon G series). Once upon a time people wanted to move towards DSLR cameras because they had a better pixel density. The less pixels per square area means that each pixel can get more light. Its sort of like carving a pizza into more slices and pretending there is more food.

The graph below shows the pixel density of successive cameras, I've started it with my 2002 model Coolpix 5000 (which is a 2/3" sensor and was a great camera in its day) and moved along towards the new Nikon 1

The Nikon has much lower pixel density than my G1 panasonic, which likely means it'll have more noise. Its interesting how we've come full circle back to where we were in 2002. I wrote this article some years back, but it seems none the less relevant now.

Perhaps Nikon is re-entering the pro-sumer market with a more capable camera (sneaking up the sensor size I mean)? Certainly when compared to the winky dink little sensors put into cameras like the Canon Powershot range (even the G12) this new 1 series will be a better performer.

But something smells badly with the marketing push IMHO.

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