Real Life review of AW1

Started 9 months ago | User reviews thread
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Bobby Handal
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Real Life review of AW1
9 months ago

I was finally able to take a close look at the Nikon 1 AW1, just came back from Roatan from 4 full days snorkeling with the AW1 and kit lens.

Background: I have been a photographer for over 35 years, and have used a variety of underwater cameras from film days: Nikonos and Housed 35mm and in the Digital age: Olympus m4/3, Panasonic GF3 w/housing, and waterproofed point and shoot from Canon, panasonic, etc.

I own several brands, and emphasis in Nikon, including V1, V2 and the AW1.

This camera is a little larger than the V1 and V2 , at least it seems it is. The screen seems not as good, and not EVF. I bought the beige rubber thingy to protect the camera.

Positive things: This camera flies !! got every single shot, response time is awesome, I grabbed the fish where I wanted them, no hesitation in focus, snaps focus fast. Not a big issue regarding framing in bright light underwater, worked pretty good. The little flash thats built in is not bad, even underwater. Metering worked great.

I ended up using underwater mode instead of using A or S mode, apparently the underwater mode uses 1/500 sec as the main shutter speed and moves the ISO around , however, conservatively . You can pick the underwater hue so that it looks like you are seeing it underwater. Quite nice.

I used it continuously for 1.5 hours, perhaps 2 hours underwater without issues. Done one morning snorkel, one afternoon snorkel and one night snorkel, all on the same battery !!!

Negative things :

Since its in underwater mode, every time you turned off and then turned on the camera the lock camera "advise" showed up, frustrating some photos because of this initial screen. in the 4th day, the camera started fogging up, which was reported by users but I never encountered until today. I figured I left the camera on too long without turning off and this overheats the camera causing fogging. I burned a canon camera this way.  That is why is always good to turn off camera when snorkeling until you find something good to photograph.

Once the camera cooled the steamy LCD screen turned back to normal, lens was okay.

I would like to mention that every day I put some new grease on Oring and a little touch on battery door and port door. But on the fourth day I got lazy and figured since I did not change lenses or anything it did not need it. Perhaps that little humidity went inside because of this, don't know. I will religiously put greese in every dive from now on. However, camera is fine and continues taking photos.

Thats it for the negative things.

"SO FAR IT IS THE BEST SNORKELING CAMERA I HAVE HAD...." the amount of frames per second, the speed of focus acquisition, it is just awesome. With so many other cameras , including m 4/3 with housings, your response time was horrid and therefore got a lots of tails instead of fish.

Here are some of the photos, I just came back so I have not had a chance to pick the good ones, just a few I quickly saw :

If you have any comments or questions let me know.

Best regards from Honduras !!

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www.photoexpedition.net
www.fotoclubhonduras.com

 Bobby Handal's gear list:Bobby Handal's gear list
Fujifilm FinePix X100 Panasonic Lumix DMC-TS3 Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX400V Olympus PEN E-PL1 Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF3 +47 more
Bobby Handal's score
4.0
Average community score
4.1
bad for good for
Kids / pets
great
Action / sports
great
Landscapes / scenery
good
Portraits
okay
Low light (without flash)
acceptable
Flash photography (social)
mediocre
Studio / still life
weak
= community average
Nikon 1 AW1 Nikon 1 V1 Nikon 1 V2
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