Thinking about V1 and other possibilities

Started Jun 29, 2012 | Discussions thread
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RedW
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Thinking about V1 and other possibilities
Jun 29, 2012

I've been exploring options for a 2nd camera, for when I don't (or can't) take my D300s and assorted lenses. For example, on the way to work last winter, I saw a coyote crossing a frozen lake with the sun casting a wonderful pattern on the ice. But, no camera! Or, I'm on a business trip and have a few hours to kill. I'd like a camera that is so small that I do, in fact, take it with me but one with sufficiently high image quality that it doesn't disappoint.

The key criteria, then, are size and image quality (i.e., RAW is essential). I'd also like built-in GPS (I'm getting addicted to that) or, absent that, a non-cumbersome way of adding it. While I'm happy using point and shoot mode to capture the unexpected, I'd still like a fair degree of control for planned shots. Finally, movie abilities are irrelevant, and flash performance is really low down on the list.

One of the leading candidates -- after spending much time reading this forum and especially reading Rob Galbriath's review -- is the V1 with both 10-30 and 30-110. However, I'm also considering the following:

  • Sony NEX-5N: Great sensor, good range of optional lenses, no GPS, too big with lens attached?

  • Nikon Coolpix 7100: Slightly larger than I'd hope, very good image quality based on review, good lens range of 28-200 equiv. (but less than the V1), lower cost, no GPS.

  • Canon S100: Excellent size, GPS, lens less useful (24-120 equiv)

I did rule out the Olympus, as both the size and cost are too much. There's a deal (I'm in Canada) for the V1 with both 10-30 and 30-110 for $899. However, adding the GPS is fairly costly. The Sony with 18-55 is $699, and other lenses are available. The Canon is the cheapest and smallest, but I wonder if the trade off of image quality and size is worth it.

I'm off to the local store this afternoon to try several models hands on, but would appreciate any thoughts from those of you who have faced similar decisions, especially if I've overlooked a viable contender. BTW, although I use a D300s, I'm not necessarily committed to Nikon if there's a better tool for this purpose.

 RedW's gear list:RedW's gear list
Nikon D800 Nikon AF-S Nikkor 16-35mm f/4G ED VR Nikon AF-S Nikkor 24-120mm f/4G ED VR Nikon AF-S Nikkor 50mm f/1.8G Nikon AF-S Nikkor 85mm f/1.8G +1 more
Nikon 1 V1 Nikon D300S Sony Alpha NEX-5N
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