Nikon Announces J1 and V1 Mirrorless Cameras and New Lens System

Nikon’s long-awaited mirrorless camera system has arrived. Today Nikon announced the new J1 and V1 mirrorless cameras and four new Nikon “1 System” lenses. The two cameras have nearly identical specs: a 10.1 megapixel CX-format (13.2mmx8.8mm) CMOS sensor with 2.7x crop factor, a 3-inch LCD screen, 10fps shooting, 1080/30p HD video recording, 1200fps slow-motion recording at 320×120, simultaneous video/still capture, 73-point hybrid autofocus, and 12-bit RAW files.

Nikon J1: Colorful and Compact

The Nikon J1 offers a compact camera-style body and is geared towards people who want a “carry everywhere” camera. It comes in a variety of colors (white, pink, red, silver, black), has a built-in popup flash, and will arrive on October 20th with a 10-30mm (27-81mm equivalent) lens for $650.

Nikon V1: For Serious Shooters

The Nikon V1 is a camera geared towards photo enthusiasts, and is supposedly the world’s smallest and lightest camera with interchangeable lenses and an electronic viewfinder. It packs a 1.4M dot high-res electronic viewfinder, mechanical shutter, “multi-accessory port”, and sturdy magnesium alloy build. The V1 will also arrive on October 20th with the same 10-30mm lens for $900.

Lenses and F-mount Adapter

The Nikon 1 System will initially launch with 4 new lenses. In addition to the 10-30mm f/3.5-5.6 kit lens, there will be a 30-110mm f/3.8-5.6 (81-297mm equiv) for $250, 10mm f/2.8 (27mm equiv) for $250, and a 10-100mm f/4.5-5.6 (27-270mm equiv) power zoom lens for $750.

A FT-1 F-mount adaptor will also be released to allow Nikon fans to use their existing collection of SLR lenses.


The Nikon 1 System will launch with a number of accessories, including an ME-1 stereo microphone for $180, an ML-L3 wireless remote for $20, and a GP-N100 GPS accessory for $150.

Final Thoughts

Whether or not the Nikon 1 camera system will succeed may depend on how much quality the company can squeeze out of its 2.7x crop factor sensor. Though it’s larger than the 5.7x Pentax Q sensor and most compact camera sensors, it’s significantly smaller than the ones in popular mirrorless cameras in the market (e.g. Sony’s NEX and Micro Four Thirds).

Ordinary consumers are moving more towards mobile phones for everyday photos, and the ones that desire quality can get more than enough of it from a camera like the new $430 Canon S100. It’s people who are more serious about photography that may consider adopting a new camera system with interchangeable lenses, and those are the people who prefer larger sensor sizes.

Still, the Nikon brand is a powerful one, and the fact that existing F-mount lenses will soon be compatible with the Nikon 1 system is a huge plus. Also, the sensor size choice definitely makes sense: it allows Nikon to jump into the EVIL market without cannibalizing its popular and massively profitable DSLR lines.

  • Lori Gilliar


  • Merv Wignall

    ORDERED :-)

  • Stephan Henningsen

    Yet another lens system.  And in a wide variety of colours.  Won’t it be virtually impossible to sell a pink lens?  Is the move from a compact camera to this that significant?  I don’t think I understand this move.

  • NikonLover

    wanted the Canon G12 because of the DSLR bulk but resisted the temptation due
    to the Nikon new system. I am truly disappointed by Nikon! I am turning back to
    Canon or Sony NEX7… Shame Nikon.

  • Mister K

    From a photographers point of view, this is rubbish. With that sensor size, the images will look almost exactly like stuff shot with any decent compact camera, or even mobile phone. The lenses are totally dissapointing, and since they’re so big, there is no real benefit from a small camera body. Fitting an F-mount lens to a camera like that… why? Image quality will be poor, lens is huge and focal length multiplier will make a 16-105 lens into… some kind of telephoto monster. Why would I need a 300mm (equiv) on a camera this size? Shooting birds? If I’m serious about my birds, I need a big honking tripod, negating the need for a small camera anyway.

    What are Nikon up to? The more I see what they are offering, the more disappointed I am. 

  • Fenil

    What the heck? I thought Nikon will make a huge announcement.
    This is rubbish. Small sensor, 1.4M EVF, shit that nobody really needs. Oh yeah, and you can buy a new set of this shitty slow lenses.
    Why not an optical viefinder? Bigger sensor? Great lenses?
    Why arent camera manufacturers listenings to the needs of their customers?
    (Except Leica and Fujifilm. And yeah, Ricoh with their RD1 line.)

  • Anonymous

    Great, I will be able to use ALL my C-mount lenses…

  • Aasdasd

    Meh… What’s the difference between this and the GF series from Panasonic…

  • Josh Ladella

    Oh my…looks like Nikon is retaining the number and changing the letter in their naming scheme. Watch out when the D1 and F1 are released.

    Also, 10mm 2.8 for $250? Disappointment. I’ll wait on this system until some quality high-speed primes are made for it.

    And for all those who bash on this system’s shortcomings, keep in mind that initial release doesn’t define the worth of the system. Micro Four Thirds launched with some pretty terrible lenses, but they now have a fairly impressive lineup.

  • Guest

    2.7x crop?! Of course people will go for this instead of Panalympus’ 2x crop or the nex’s 1.5x crop (although with so-so lenses)…

  • Anonymous

    It would have been a good camera if they used DX sensors. They didn’t, so now it’s just an expensive point and shoot.

  • Josh

    What’s up with this trend of CMOS? And can someone explain to me what the advantage is of having the mechanical shutter in the V1?

  • Models Calgary

    Epic fail. It’s all about the sensor, and this one is just too small. 

  • Flgraphics


  • Aasdasd

    Ummm, I think people would prefer the 1.5 or 2X crop over a 2.7?

  • Anonymous

    I agree with a lot of the points people are making here – one thing is definitely clear, Nikon is reinforcing their position as a camera company for the masses. 

    Just forsaking the Nikon 1 series with a A, S, P, M controls but including RAW goes to show you 
    how confused Nikon must be in what they think their loyal market wants. The biggest downfall of the P300, the supposedly competitor to the S95 was the smaller sensor and lack of RAW. Now we’ve got a mirrorless system with RAW, but no manual controls. You’d think the two were mutually exclusive and go for the epic win.

    Instead we’ve got Nikon and camera that does the shooting for you aimed at a mass market with a higher disposable income, but doesn’t want the complication of an DSLR. A camera for the prosumer looking for a break from the complex, a camera for the hipster who can attach holga lenses via an adapter, a camera for people who trust a bigger name in cameras than Olympus or Panasonic.

    Disappointed like most of you and looking forward to the next model. 

  • Persio Pucci

    looking forward for the NEX-7… it will be my mirroless of choice, unless Canon brings something really good to the table

  • Persio Pucci

    better check your irony sensors for malfunctions…

  • Persio Pucci

    well, if it brings money home, that’s what they are doing. Remember, they are not doing it because you love photography. They are doing it because they (and us, and pretty much everybody) loves money. If that’s where money is, mass market ready to throw monay at them for a nice looking camera that will do better than point and shoot, and not be cumbersome as a SLR, and they can still look like hipsters as a bonus, so that’s where they are heading.

  • Anonymous

    Totally with you on that one. I just like to sometimes think they’re listening to what some of us wish they’d do ;) But to consider Canon does a nice job balancing mass and professional markets quite well, with a bevy of cameras for each segment is something Nikon should marvel at.

  • Cheese

    This announcement would have been better if their had been a D800 in there instead of this CSC crap.

  • Daniel Austin Hoherd

    My thoughts exactly.  Why oh why does the world need another lens system?  It doesn’t.  Why does it need a compact camera about the size of a micro 4/3, but with a worse crop factor?  It doesn’t.

    I shot Nikon for over 15 years.  This is a dumb move.  It’s a long shot against Micro 4/3 and Sony Alpha that will turn out badly for them.

  • Bonka

    Now if just Fuji could upgrade the X100 to a camera with focus ability, water resistant dials,  reduce boot time and make it black … (and make the lenses Leica-M interchangeable).

    Then it’s OK. I’m done.

  • mrbeard

    This is great news, means i dont need to trade in my Nikon DSLR for one of them

  • Spud

    The bodies cost just as much as the low-end DX dSLR bodies and have much smaller sensors? 
    Why would anybody buy this?

  • Aasdasd

    Right… my sarcasm detection icon must be faulty on this browser.

  • Aasdasd

    They won’t…

  • Alessandro Casagli

    Screw you Nikon, from a true fan.

  • Nicole DiGiorgio

    This: “Ordinary consumers are moving more towards mobile phones for everyday photos, and the ones that desire quality can get more than enough of it from a camera like the new $430 Canon S100. It’s people who are more serious about photography that may consider adopting a new camera system with interchangeable lenses, and those are the people who prefer larger sensor sizes.”

    Not considering this for even a nanosecond. 2.7 crop factor is CRAP!


    a day late and a dollar short Nikon… 

    Can you say “Fuji X100″? lol.

  • Dannynoonan82

    whatever. i pay about as much attention to this as a coolpix. 

  • Zak Henry

    If Leica can squeeze a full frame sensor into a similar form factor, the least Nikon could do is put one of the DX sensors in their mirrorless line

  • Guest

    Of course if was irony.

    That being said, sensor size is no reason it shouldn’t sell. Most people’s knowledge about cameras stretches to “they take pictures”. As long as it says Nikon and the people in the store recommend it I think people will buy these, unfortunately. why can’t anyone bring a reasonably priced, digital rangefinder (manual focus) to the market? Sure it’s not a huge market, but it should be possible to make a niche product like this that doesn’t cost m9 money.

  • Ian Ludwig

    For those who at least want to read up on it. First impressions over at DP Review:

  • Zigi23

    2.7x crop ?
    This is the biggest disappointment for me. I put my money on the nex7.

  • NutsaboutNikon

    I was expecting a full-frame, metal-bodied effort (a digital FM)….better built than the Fuji X100…..for half the price of a Leica M9. Very disappointed.

  • Simon Meisinger

    nikon’s sensor is crappier.

  • Mister K

    I wasn’t expecting it, but I would really love it! I’m shooting with Olympus OM1 and OM2, and those are awesome cameras. Make me a digital one! 

    If you are reasonably serious about photography, a manual SLR camera from the late 70s or early 80s is a fantastic tool, capable of making fantastic images. It was true then, its true now. I don’t understand why none of the big manufacturers are capable of making a digital SLR that is as easy and great to use as an OM2. Why are the viewfinders of todays semi pro cameras small and dim? How is it possible that a viewfinder made in 1979 is a lot better than the vf in my D700? Why are the cameras so big and chunky (X100 excluded). 

    Nikon must have spent many million dollars coming up with the above ‘system’. What if they could spend a little money on making a digital SLR that feels and handles like a manual camera. They still produce (or at least sell) the manual lenses, lenses that still produce killer results on digital sensors. So half of the system is already in place. The X100 is selling at about 1200 EUR in Sweden (where I live). A camera with a crop sensor and fixed lens. Imagine what they could charge for a digital FM3a. I’d probably buy it at 2000 EUR. Perhaps even 2500 EUR. I’m not alone.

    /end rant.

  • Dave


    My thoughts exactly!

    My M lens are gathering so much dust it is a crime…

  • Mariobouthat

    Wow, I totally feel you. I am also looking for this utopic system. All the great assets of the manual SLR’s of the 70’s (I also shoot with the OM1) and the sharpness, build quality and the compact size of the ZUIKO lenses.

    Actually if anyone have any information about this, I was wondering about the manufacturing of an adapter for old NIKKOR lenses or M42 lenses to this new mount. I hope it gets manufactured soon enough or even at all.

  • mariob

    Without the hassle of film*