V3 vs V1

Started Apr 17, 2014 | Discussions thread
Scottelly Forum Pro • Posts: 11,421
Re: (1) way too expensive, (2) poor sensor

antoineb wrote:

The Smoking Camera wrote:

So with the V3 about to be released I took a quick look at specs to see if an upgrade is worthwhile. From what I can see the V3 improves the following over the V1:

18 vs 10mp.

No optical low pass filter.

Increased number of AF points.

20 vs 10fps with AF-C.

Maximum iso increased to 12,800 from 6400.

Built in wifi and remote capability.

Improved video.

PSAM mode dial.

Programmable function buttons.

Built in flash.

Vari-angle LCD screen.

These are all nice improvements but worth the $$. I don't know. And unfortunately, no indication low light performance has improved in any significant way. Time to wait for some hands-on reviews.

Hi Joe,

as a Nikon DSLR owner I have followed the "1" series closely since the first launch.

On the early models I just couldn't believe how the bodies were poorly designed and inconvenient and heavy. Nor could I believe how high the prices were.

Now a couple years later it seems that Nikon finally let their good engineers take charge (as opposed to whoever they decided to let work on the initial designs) so we have the V3 and J4 which finally seem to have reasonable or even good ergonomics.

However we still have a few pretty serious issues:

- first, the 1" sensor space has filled up massively. If you don't think you need interchangeable lenses and want a really pocketable package then there is the Sony RX100 which costs about the same as the lower-end Nikon model the J4 - the Sony has faster glass at the wide end but slower AF. If you do need the interchangeable lenses you have the Samsung NX mini.

The Sony RX100 is not a camera the Nikon 1 system is competing against. Try comparing a camera with interchangeable lenses. If you're going to pull cameras that don't have interchangeable lenses into the conversation, there are a LOT of cameras from Nikon, Fuji, Canon, Pentax, etc. to compare them to. But there is really no competition in the mirrorless interchangeable lens camera market right now . . . except for the new Samsung, which has a high-resolution BSI sensor, so that is indeed a competitor. But the Samsung NX is an entry into the market . . . that's all. It's slow (in comparison to all but the cheapest of the Nikons). It also has questionable lenses available (and they actually aren't even available yet). Nikon has the head start. Samsung has 3 lenses. If they make three more by next year and their lenses are great, then Samsung's system will be a competitor. For now though, they are not. Hopefully they will push Nikon hard though. I'd like to see that. I'd like to see Nikon build a system with lots of primes, zooms, and fisheyes. I'd like to see a couple of miniature PC lenses too. The Nikon 1 system lenses have a reputation for good quality. It does not really compete with the Nikon 1 system, and it will take a little time before Samsung can mature to where they actually are competing (at least a year). There is nothing else in the 1" market. Canon has no entry. Neither do Sony, Pentax, or Fuji. Samsung, while an amazing technology company that is making moves in the camera market, does not have a name in the photography world, like Nikon does. They do not have a massive market of photographers who own one or more of their other cameras and have lenses to mount on their 1" offering. That is really significant, and if you can't see that then you're blind. Yes, maybe the NX lenses can be mounted on the NX mini cameras with an adapter or something, but how many photographers have Samsung NX cameras? Not many.

- second, the pricing remains questionable to say the least: the base Nikon V3 kit will cost you no less than 1'200 dollars! This compares to just over 500 dollars for a Sony RX100. But you could also buy a very good m43 camera such as the Panasonic GX7 for less than 800 dollars ie one-third cheaper than the Nikon V3. Or of course you could buy a solid DSLR with a decent lens for one-fourth cheaper! Come on Nikon what are you thinking? Price that thing at 800 dollars and include the adapter for my Nikon glass and maybe I'll buy it

Nikon offers cameras in the 1" sensor size market that start at $229 (with two lenses!) and go up to their newest flagship camera in that market . . . the V3, which includes a lens and an adapter that they have been selling for $250 or more. Why SHOULDN'T they sell that top-of-the-line camera for more than $1,000? They sell a full-frame camera that shoots much slower and with less megapixels (the D4s with its 16 megapixel sensor) for more than 5 times the price! People DO buy that. It seems to me a no-brainer for people to choose the little V3 if they're considering that expensive beast. It's like an accessory. I'd guess almost every pro with a D4 or D4s camera would buy a V3. I know if I had the money for a D4 or D4s the V3 would definitely be my next camera.

- third, the Aptina sensor Nikon is using, just isn't very good. Not that I take DxO numbers without a grain of salt or two, but come on: (1) the 1" sensors on the Nikon "1" cameras just have never reached very impressive scores (actually the 1/1.7" sensor on their own enthusiast compact scores similarly!), (2) these scores have not improved in the least over the years, and (3) the same size Sony sensor in the RX100 is clearly massively better.

The new 18 megapixel sensor is free of an anti-aliasing filter. The samples I've seen look good. That doesn't mean much though. DXOmark is rating that sensor lower than the sensor in the V1. REALLY?!? DXO must have their heads up their ass. There is NO WAY the V3 will not shoot significantly sharper photos (with good lenses), and I bet it has a higher dynamic range than the sensors in the V1 and V2. At least DXO's score for the V3 is slightly higher than the V2, as it should be.

So yes, the "1" series offers wonderful autofocus, and solid AF in video. At the expense of image quality even when compared to other 1" sensor cameras. And for a huge price premium. So the market for the "1" is: people who mostly only shoot fast action (they will often be pros), but don't care much about the best image quality (but pros want that), and are happy to pay a large price premium. Sounds like a very, very narrow niche to me.

I think you're underestimating the market for the Nikon 1 system cameras. Not all pros want more image quality than they get from a 10 MP camera. There are still pros shooting with the Canon 1D Mk II. The V1 (and J1) captures 10 MP photos as good as the 10 megapixel Nikon D200 did. I would guess the V3 will capture photos almost as good as what can be shot with a Canon 1Dx at ISO settings of 100, 200, and maybe even 400. Sure, at ISO 800 the $7,000 Canon (and the 16 megapixel Nikon D4) will pull away from the V3, and at ISO 1600 and above they will blow away the image quality from the V3. But who shoots at those ISO settings on sunny days? The V3 is a sunny day sports camera. There are LOTS of people who like to go to golf games and shoot photos of their favorite golfer from far off. There are lots of people who like to go to their kid's baseball or football game, which normally happen around 3:30 in the afternoon. These are some of the people who will buy the V3. They would like a professional camera, but they don't want to spend $5,000 on a massive lens. They don't want to carry that huge thing around with them. They want the speed and they want the good pictures though . . . and most of the time when they would be shooting, they CAN get the pictures . . . from a little camera and lens they can buy for about $2,000. (V3 and 70-300mm)

Bird shooters seem to LOVE the Nikon 1 system, and anyone who used to spend more than $1,000 just for a lens will be happy to pay $2,000 for a kick-ass camera and lens combination that saves them from carrying that huge lens they have. Remember . . . people who are retired, 60 or 70 years of age, do not like to carry heavy stuff. Many bird shooters are people who have retired and now have the time to shoot photos more.

Then there's the people who have a point-and-shoot camera, but it's just too slow. They don't want a big DSLR. They hear the Nikon 1 system sits in a middle ground between the point-and-shoot cameras or the bridge cameras and the DSLR cameras, and they heard they can shoot really fast. If you have ever tried to shoot photos of a toddler moving around, you would think that a fast shooting camera would be what you would want. These people will buy the J1 and S1 like crazy! Some of them will upgrade to the V3. (It just depends on what their budget is.)

I think moms will buy the hell out of this (or their husbands will buy it for them):


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