Nikon V1 has great technology wrapped in a terrible UI

Started 4 months ago | User reviews thread
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Tonio Loewald
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Nikon V1 has great technology wrapped in a terrible UI
4 months ago

There's really nothing bad about the functionality of the Nikon V1. Its weakest point is low-light performance (which seems on par with my first DSLR — the Nikon D50). It works great with Nikon AF-S lenses using the FT-1 adapter, and the 1 system zooms are tiny and quite competent.

All the Nikon 1's problems come from its bizarrely awful user interface. Why they didn't just put a PASM dial and a command dial on the sucker I don't know. Instead we get a shooting mode dial which seems to flip settings of its own will, and which only has one generally useful setting (take photos). The other settings are all "miss the photograph you meant to take".

But it's worse than the mode dial. There's a kind of weird toggle switch that Nikon has chosen to use for things like manual focus (when you can figure out how to get into manual focus mode).

Oh yeah — it has a non-standard flash hotshoe. That's another face-palm issue.

I could go on and on, but others have done so at length. The big point is that everything works great, the viewfinder is fine (not awesome, but fine), autofocus is great, verging on amazing, and there are a ton of impressive gimmicky features too (e.g. 400fps video and the ability to shoot short sequences of 4K).

Oh, and a great feature of the V1 is that it shares EL-N15 batteries with the D7x00/D6x0/D800.

I haven't rated it as fantastic for any kind of shooting because it is limited by low light performance and resolution no matter what you do.

 Tonio Loewald's gear list:Tonio Loewald's gear list
Nikon D7000 Nikon 1 V1 Nikon D600 Nikon AF-S DX Nikkor 35mm f/1.8G Nikon AF Nikkor 24-85mm f/2.8-4D IF +6 more
Tonio Loewald's score
4.0
Average community score
4.4
bad for good for
Kids / pets
good
Action / sports
good
Landscapes / scenery
acceptable
Portraits
good
Low light (without flash)
mediocre
Flash photography (social)
unrated
Studio / still life
unrated
= community average
Nikon 1 V1 Nikon D50
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