Nokia’s New ‘Goodbye DSLR’ 1020 Ad Will Either Make You Laugh or Piss You Off

What’s the best way to entice the professional photography market to buy into your device? Insult them of course! At least that seems to be Nokia’s strategy in its latest Lumia 1020 Ad, “Goodbye DSLR, Hello Lumia 1020.”

Now, before the cries of “you can’t take a joke” and “quit taking yourself so seriously” start, understand that I don’t mind people poking fun at photographers or the photography industry as a whole. I get a kick out of it. I spend somewhere in the vicinity of 100% of my waking hours running a major photography blog. Taking myself too seriously is a quick way to develop ulcers and/or go bald.

I also love the Lumia 1020. A camera phone with RAW capability, manual controls and 41-megapixels of resolution that takes photography seriously and can hang with some great compacts gets a gold star in my book.

And yet, this ad pissed me off. Mainly because it represents everything I fought against when I was a meager digital camera salesman at a major electronics retailer. To this day, the “but my smartphone has just as many megapixels as THAT thing” comment sets my grey matter aflame.


You can imagine how I felt, then, when Nokia decides to ridicule the DSLR in (I’ll admit it) clever but ultimately aggravating fashion. Why would you need a DSLR when the 1020 has more megapixels than most SLRs AND *gasp* full manual controls! For goodness sake, they’ve even ‘reinvented’ zoom so you never have to understand a thing about composition ever again!

Why indeed? I can just imagine the professional photog with tens of thousands invested in amazing glass heaving a sigh and, with one last wistful look at their gear bag, putting everything up on eBay. Why would they need it anymore… they can have a Lumia 1020?


Perhaps I’m overreacting. In fact, I’m pretty certain I am. But dang it, I respected this company and phone until this ad ran. Obviously no serious photographers will be swayed by what they see here to toss away their gear — and there’s no doubt the 1020 is a great camera phone worthy of gracing a professional’s pocket.

But there are people who will be swayed. And something inside of me cringes at the many camera salesman who, because of this ad, will be forced to take a deep breath… count to ten… and then explain why exactly portability and ease of use (and maybe sharing ability) are pretty much the only advantages of the Lumia.

Oh, and if the video seems a little low-quality compared to most commercials, it’s probably because it was shot entirely on the Lumia 1020… Right tool for the right situation folks.

(via Photography Bay)

  • Katie

    Photographers need to lighten up. It seems to me that this ad is not aimed at the photographers who actually know why they need DSLRs and how to use them (not just sticking them on auto). It’s aimed at the people who buy a DSLR and all the equipment without ever learning how it works or really knowing what it’s advantages are. For those people, the Lumia will probably work just as well for them.

    And if sales people have to explain why megapixels are not the whole picture, why is that a problem? If you’re really passionate about what you’re selling then teaching people about what they’re buying should be exciting not troublesome.

  • greenarcher02

    Yes. I don’t why they’re butthurt. It’s not like their work is going to be diminished by this ad. At least people who don’t know how to use a DSLR might opt for this. It’s actually much more painful to see an unused/misused DSLR than this ad…

  • Daz

    oh i guess i was wrong i thought they where trying to show how stupid dslr photographers can look like and instead you can do everything with just the phone.

  • Adrian S

    Funny ad. And mostly true. There is nothing more annoying then walking strapped to your DSLR on all your vacations. If you don’t have a car, you will walk hours with your backpack full of gear, that in most cases you will not even use. I did that and it’s hard work not relaxing at all. If you are a pro any camera will do even a phone camera.

  • baldheretic

    To be fair, When i am travelling I see a lot of people toting DSLR rigs that look like complete buffoons. Engaging them in conversation often times confirms their buffoonery.

  • PhotogSam

    What is wrong with the guy’s skin at 0:37?

  • Tarmo

    Exactly, if that commercial sways the dSLR users then they were not ready for their DSLR anyways.

  • James

    I mean yeah it sucks to pack around more than you need… but that doesn’t mean you should rely on your camera phone.

  • James

    The 1020 doesn’t really replace the iPhone either.

  • Beaugrand_RTMC

    I’m tickled to death with my T3i. Now, on the other hand, if I’m in DC when Klaatu and Gort land the saucer on the White House lawn, it will probably be captured by my little cellphone, which is always in my pocket.

  • Beaugrand_RTMC

    The only advantage a cellphone has over my DSLR is that it can make phone calls and sent text messages. I have an Eye-Fi card installed, and the screen on my T3i is just about big enough to be a touchscreen, and I suspect there is adequate room in the camera housing to stuff the cellphone chipset; when the day comes that I can make a phone call or send a text via a bluetooth-enabled DSLR, I may no longer need my cellphone.

  • greenarcher02

    camera-wise it does, among other things. Or have you not used one? The iPhone does capture faster but the Lumia takes better photos.

  • James

    Honestly I’ve only demo’d it, i usually don’t like to pass an opinion on a camera until I have had a chance to sit down and play with the RAW files, but when i used it, it was pitched to me in possibly a less tongue and cheek you can throw your DSLR out the window now way that I didn’t really take it seriously.

  • Wilson Co

    Perfect camera…..for tourists.

  • Adrian S

    I agree, I would not rely on a camera phone either. But one lens and body and maybe flash with backup batteries can add to at least 3 kg. I would personally go with a compact camera 300g (10x lighter), something with a bigger lens / sensor like Sony HX20. Also a mirror-less camera would be great, but it’s out of my price range.

  • Joe Peek

    The way I see it, Nokia are shitting on their own doorstep.
    Don’t insult photographers with this crap, yet expect them to buy it as the high mega pixel count and professional file format will only appeal to them.
    Let’s not forget, it’s phones like this that are putting photographers out of the job. Need I remind you of the article PetaP posted earlier this week about the Newspapers relying on the publics smartphone shots and not professional photographers

  • Island In The Sky

    This post could easily be construed as a stealth ad, with the number of times the product is mentioned. Ugh.

  • Woody ONeal

    Hey Nokia, I’m off to pre-order the Fujifilm XT-1.

  • Technocrat

    If Apple makes an ad…it “invents” iPhonography. When Nokia does it, it is rubbing the wrong way. WOW!!!! iSheeps.

  • pgb0517

    But the point is, when I travel, I want to take good photographs, and I take my gear with me to achieve that end, so carrying it is the price I pay. If I wanted snapshots, I’d leave the gear behind.

  • pgb0517

    You stole my post. Exactly right. This is aimed at the wannabes. I think maybe fewer of them carrying around gear they know little about is a good thing.

  • pgb0517

    Yep. Horrible backlighting on many of the scenes shot against the bright sky.

  • Alex5000

    “Why indeed? I can just imagine the professional photog with tens of thousands invested in amazing glass heaving a sigh and, with one last wistful look at their gear bag, putting everything up on eBay.”

    I don’t have a problem with that — it’s their decision AND it just might mean getting a good deal on some nice gear, depending on when the auction comes down, and how the bidding war goes. Seriously, people with lots of gear and little sense downsizing to superphones is a very good thing for bargain-hunters whose desires are typically bigger than their buying power… :)

  • Alex5000

    On paper, it’s clearly got a superior camera, but I think its user base is still small enough that I haven’t seen very many pictures from it that I like better than even a lot of iPhone 4/4s imagery that’s out there. I’m sure that’ll change a bit as more people get more in-tune with their 1020s, though.

  • Alex5000

    If Klaatu and Gort land, and Gort doesn’t vapourise me, then I’m begging Klaatu to take me with them! I’ll take pictures as we ascend, with whatever I’ve got in my pocket! :)

  • Gatot Jaka Timur

    DL Cade, yes they are leaving the big equipment behind. I’ve seen it. TWO of the buddies leaved his and her Nikon DSLR and prefer using iphone only. You could imagine with better phone camera like Nokia Lumia and i’ve seen how people compare Nokia Lumia with iphone, canon and nikon dslr. Not to bad. the blog said that Nokia is left behind for about 3 or more years.. The result is also not that bad. Obviously the best among phone cam, although for myself i would prefer a 10-24 wide angle lens plus my old canon 400 when taking picture on my travel.

  • ixohoxi

    I get it. It’s really really good. But it’s only available on AT&T with contract. That’s the problem with this phone.

    I will buy it immediately when it’s “officially” available *unlocked and off-contract* and supports either AT&T or T-Mobile. Full MSRP price is not a problem here.

  • Fed Up with weirdos like you

    Dear Nokia: You are a complete joke. You know that you will not exist within 1-2 years as a company. You are trying anything to sell your Phones. I have seen the images this contraption generates and they are fantastic..if you are like 9 years old.

  • Fed Up with weirdos like you

    well….looking at your profile image here..i would say that Joke is on you..did u take this image at Halloween ?

  • Ryan

    I’m fairly sure it’s marketed towards the consumer market who is buying comparably expensive prosumer DSLRs and only using the auto settings (oh the humanity!). I for one wouldn’t mind if they bought these instead. They already think a photographers skill is determined by the specs of their camera. This is a ridiculously easy way to show them they are wrong. I’m all for it.

  • Ryan

    The fact that every tourist now has a canon 70d is really disturbing when they don’t even know how to use a fraction of its potential.

  • Chris Rogers


  • Marcus Manchester

    The one thing that struck me was that Nokia had to use some of those “cumbersome accessories” to make this video. Notice that some shots have some camera shake as it’s being hand held, and other shots are stable as if it’s on a tripod. One other question I would have, did they use a filter so that they could what was taking place on the screens? And the video quality was extremely substandard compared to some videos I’ve seen recently from lowly DSLRs…

  • Kiltedbear

    Too much over and under exposure. Exactly what I would expect from a point and shoot. Pixels are not any good if you can’t get exposure right.

  • Zack

    Free fill reflector?

  • Cypherpunks (a public account)

    Well, consider this: they’ll only be swayed until they get serious about photography. And when they’re serious, they will come to appreciate such things as “optics” and “lenses” and “filters” and “color response”, and they’ll realize for example, all CCDs are not alike, and good framing and good timing are necessary but woefully insufficient for great photography. And if they’re not serious, what difference does it make? They’re just doing it for fun.

  • Cypherpunks (a public account)

    I want bounceable optics. *boing* Optics: “I’m OK!”

  • Michael Rasmussen

    Can I get a tilt shift and fries with that?

  • CW

    Listen to the music, this is all very tongue-in-cheek. Don’t take it seriously, they are taking the piss.

  • zdroberts

    Why does that guy have a video tripod? And in general… really? I know that the Nokia can take better pics than what they showed here.

  • James

    If you haven’t tried mirror-less yet, I can’t recommend it enough. The EOS-M has been price cut to a fairly absurd point, so I picked one up, and now my 60D is gathering Dust.

  • James

    Yeah I mean I can see what you mean, but for me at least I pretty much need an iPhone for my work (no other phone can touch it for enterprise functionality) so even if it does better photo’s/video, it would have to do that and have the functionality in other areas to earn it the same place in my pocket.

  • Jigsaw

    It makes me laugh. Typical ad nonsense with no basis in reality, as always.

  • Valentin

    DSLR was a trend at some point, now replaced by mirrorless … the point here is that THE REGULAR AMATEUR doesn’t need a very fancy camera that most of the time(99%) is set to AUTO. so stop being so annoyed by the ad, it does not aim the professional area. it simply wants to capture attention of the regular guy that sometime ago would have bought a bulky DSLR just because he heard “it takes much better photos” – I know enough people who did it – still they don’t understand what is exposure, aperture or focal distance, nor open the user manual! A Nokia lumia 1020 would fit so much better in their hands … even though you need to have some knowledge about photography, but let’s say it has a friendlier approach on it, cheaper and so much lighter!

  • Frederic

    Do you remenber the 2012 fake ad PureView ?

  • Frederic

    Like a compact…

  • Golden Chen

    el diseño con efecto camera casquillo evitar un shock o caída por accidente.
    Es suave, se puede doblar, sintiendo adminículo lindo a lumia 1020, es posible que Google: gadget2us