Is Nikon Killing the Nikon 1 System ?

Is Nikon Killing the 1 System

Several sites have pointed to a tidbit of information that was part of a recent review of the Canon Eos-M 3 from DpReview:

Its closest peers, based on price and features, are the Fujifilm X-A2, Olympus E-M10 II and Sony a6000 (we’re leaving Nikon 1 cameras out of the list, as we believe the series is no longer being developed.)

DpReview is not known for publishing rumours, so I suspect that they know something that we don’t know, especially given that their parent company is Amazon. If this is true it’s a shame, but not that surprising. While I believe the Nikon 1 system has a degree of popularity in Aisa, I don’t think it ever really took off outside of that region. Nikon’s efforts in this area seem to have been half hearted at best. While they have released several cameras in the range over the years, they never really developed the lens system for the series.

Some are suggesting that this may signal a move from Nikon towards its long rumoured Full Frame mirrorless camera. This may well be the case, but in my opinion, this probably isn’t the reason for Nikon killing the 1 system, if it is indeed killing it. In my view, it’s the new, and much delayed Nikon DL series of premium compacts that may be the driving force behind a potential decision.

They use a similar 1 inch sensor, and Nikon may well have come to the conclusion, that this form factor better suits the sensor size than an interchangeable lens system. Given Sony’s success with 1″ cameras, it’s not beyond the realms of possibility, that Nikon executives may feel that this is a better approach. Of course, that won’t be of any comfort to any existing Nikon 1 owners.

It’s worth re-emphasising that this is all just conjecture based on a single seemingly off the cuff comment in a DpReview article, so it may well amount to nothing. Yet, anyone who I’ve talked to about this hasn’t seemed very surprised by the possibility. I still think it would be a shame though. While it may not have a huge following, the people who do use the Nikon 1 system seem to love it.

Street Photography with a Telephoto Lens

A good article from Alpha Whiskey about shooting Street Photography with a telephoto lens. This is often considered heresy by street photography purists, but as someone who shoots street photography often, I regularly use a telephoto.

I’ve written about my thoughts on the whole nonsense “rules” that often surrounds “Street Photography” genre before myself on my Photography Blog.

Lens Rentals Compares Macro Lenses, Particularly Impressed with the Sony 90mm

Lens rentals compares various macro lenses from different manufacturers,, and is particularly impressed with the Sony 90mm FE lens.

The Sony FE 90mm f/2.8 Macro totally shocked me. It’s clearly better at all frequencies at macro distances. In fact, it’s the highest resolving off all these lenses at macro distances, at least in the image center. I’m not certain if it’s related or just coincidence, but the Sony lens has electronic motors controlling both the focusing and the compensating element. As best I know, all of the other macro lenses tested have mechanical movements of the compensating elements.

(Warning, it’s a very geeky article!)

Nikon Introduces the D3400, new Lenses

Nikon D3400 DSLR

Nikon has just released a new entry level DSLR, the D3400. While in some ways, it is an evolution of it’s predecessor, the D3300, with the same sensor, but there are some big changes on board too. The camera features a lighter design, and has a significant increase in battery life. Previously, the battery was rated at 700 shots per charge in the D3300, but the new D3400 is rated at an impressive 1200 shots per charge. Compare this to your typical mirrorless camera which can barely manage 200-300 shots.

Nikon has also added it’s SnapBridge connectivity system, which allows you to connect to the camera using combination of low power Bluetooth and WiFi.

Nikon also announced 4 new lenses. First are two versions of a new 70-300mm lens, one with VR and the other Without. The second set of lenses are a set of 18-55mm lenses, again, one with VR and one without. Both feature a new stepping mother design for smoother autofocus.

Here’s the Official Press Release for the D3400

SHARE THE MOMENTS THAT MATTER: EASILY CAPTURE STUNNING IMAGES OF WHAT YOU LOVE WITH THE NEW LIGHTWEIGHT NIKON D3400

Alongside the New Nikon D3400 DSLR, Nikon Releases the Compact AF-P DX NIKKOR 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR, AF-P DX NIKKOR 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G, AF-P DX NIKKOR 70-300mm f/4.5-6.3G ED VR and AF-P DX NIKKOR 70-300mm f/4.5-6.3G ED Lenses to Capture Life in Amazing Quality 

MELVILLE, N.Y. (August 17, 2016 AT 12:01 A.M. EDT) – Today, Nikon unveiled the compact yet powerful Nikon D3400, an entry-level DSLR that enables users to capture and share amazing images easier than ever before. The new D3400 provides a simple and seamless way to share stellar images from nearly anywhere through Nikon SnapBridge1. Through always-on Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) technology2, Nikon SnapBridge allows photographers to transfer images from the camera to a compatible smart device. For those looking to learn more about photography, the D3400 also features Nikon’s acclaimed Guide Mode, which provides step-by-step assistance when adjusting camera settings to help individuals learn how to capture the best photos possible.

Nikon also announced four exciting lightweight lens options which are ideal companions for the new D3400, helping budding photographers easily build an all-in-one camera kit3. The AF-P DX NIKKOR 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR and AF-P DX NIKKOR 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G, are versatile zoom lenses for everyday shooting, while the new AF-P DX NIKKOR 70-300mm f/4.5-6.3G ED VR and AF-P DX NIKKOR 70-300mm f/4.5-6.3G ED are compact telephoto options for capturing action from afar. Great for travel, these new portable lenses provide fast, smooth and quiet autofocus operation and help users capture life as it unfolds with stunning clarity and detail.

“Featuring a variety of user-friendly features like Nikon SnapBridge, the new D3400 gives those new to DSLR photography the opportunity to proudly capture what they love and easily share with friends and family,” said Kosuke Kawaura, Director of Marketing and Planning, Nikon Inc. “The introduction of the new series of NIKKOR lenses demonstrate Nikon’s commitment to providing affordable and versatile lens options to DX-format DSLR photographers looking to capture their own unique perspective of the world.”

Seamlessly Share Life’s Passions
Transferring photos from the Nikon D3400 is a snap, as the camera makes it easier than ever to share photos wirelessly through Nikon SnapBridge. Using Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE), SnapBridge creates a connection between a camera and a compatible smart device, making it possible to seamlessly upload amazing images. Once paired, the D3400 will remain connected to the smart device and transfer photos automatically, without the need to re-connect the devices each time. Those that want to send photos from their child’s graduation or a gorgeous sunset can either set all images to automatically download as they are captured, or tag individual images for transfer in-camera. Nikon SnapBridge users can also access Nikon Image Space4, a free online image sharing and storage service.

Easily Capture Vibrant Photos with Stunning Detail
Life is full of memories that are meant to be captured with rich, vivid image quality, and the Nikon D3400 makes it easy with the high-speed performance and low-light ability that only a DSLR can deliver. The Nikon D3400 features a high-resolution 24.2-megapixel CMOS sensor to help capture images that photographers love, even in tough lighting scenarios. Nikon’s EXPEED 4 image processing engine offers improved image quality at high ISOs, enhanced auto white balance performance for true colors, faster processing speeds and improved battery life. Whether shooting stylish candids or beautiful landscapes while on vacation, the Nikon D3400 is ready to help deliver magnificent stills and impressive Full HD video.

The Nikon D3400 is loaded with high performance features that help capture images in a variety of shooting situations, including a broad ISO range from 100-25,600, which helps to produce top-quality photos and videos with low noise. This enhanced ISO range makes it easy to capture sharp photos in low-light settings, such as indoor sports, stage performances or festivities that last into the night. An 11-point Autofocus System keeps pace to help create sharp images, whether capturing a backyard soccer game or the most rambunctious toddler. Additionally, the Nikon D3400 is capable of fast continuous shooting at up to 5 frames-per-second (fps), helping to ensure that fleeting moments or precious expressions are not missed. All of these features are incorporated into an extremely compact, lightweight and versatile camera body, ideal for a fast-paced on-the-go lifestyle, and small enough to bring on any family vacation.

For first-time DSLR users, the D3400 features Nikon’s Guide Mode, an intuitive and informative mode that helps develop photography skills and showcases the best camera settings for any scene. By simply turning the top Command Dial to this mode, users are prompted with a full range of capture options, and the camera guides them through various settings to create the desired image. Additionally, in-camera Scene Modes are an easy way to snap great pictures, without the need to adjust numerous settings. For even more creative shooting options, fun effects modes such as Silhouette and Miniature Photography help photographers make images that define their distinct style. When the moment calls for HD video, the D3400 offers Full HD 1080p video recording capability at the press of a button to tell any story with amazing sharpness and clarity.

Capturing the World Through a NIKKOR Lens
Nikon has also announced two new lightweight zoom lenses, the AF-P DX NIKKOR 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR and AF-P DX NIKKOR 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G. The ideal companion for DX-format DSLR cameras like the new D3400, these lenses are equipped with Nikon’s Stepping Motor technology for quick, smooth and quiet autofocus. Designated AF-P NIKKOR, these new lenses provide faster and smoother AF speed during live view (contrast-detection AF) and allow for whisper-quiet operation during video recording to minimize camera noise. The Vibration Reduction (VR) technology of the AF-P DX NIKKOR 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR offers up to four stops of image stabilization*, helping users capture flawless, blur-free images in challenging light or when handheld.

Affordable Telephoto Lenses Offer Endless Photography Possibilities
The new AF-P DX NIKKOR 70-300mm f/4.5-6.3G ED VR and AF-P DX NIKKOR 70-300mm f/4.5-6.3G ED are telephoto zoom lenses that provide further reach when users need it most. They are also equipped with a Stepping Motor that helps achieve quick, smooth and quiet autofocus. The adoption of this technology also reduces the overall size and weight of the lens, making it easy to carry on a family vacation or a trip to the zoo. The new AF-P DX NIKKOR 70-300mm f/4.5-6.3G ED VR also features Nikon’s Vibration Reduction (VR) technology, offering up to four stops of image stabilization*, helping to create sharp images in challenging light, such as an indoor gymnasium or a dusk soccer game.

Pricing and Availability
The Nikon D3400 kitted with the AF-P DX NIKKOR 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR will be available in early September 2016 for a suggested retail price (SRP) of $649.95**. The D3400 will also be available in a two-lens kit option, including the AF-P DX NIKKOR 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR and AF-P DX NIKKOR 70-300mm f/4.5-6.3G ED, for $999.95** SRP. The AF-P DX NIKKOR 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR (SRP, $249.95**), AF-P DX NIKKOR 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G (SRP $199.95**), AF-P DX NIKKOR 70-300mm f/4.5-6.3G ED VR (SRP, $399.95**) and AF-P DX NIKKOR 70-300mm f/4.5-6.3G ED (SRP $349.95**) will all be available around the same time and will be sold separately. For more information on about the new Nikon D3400 and NIKKOR lenses, please visit www.nikonusa.com.

1. The SnapBridge app is available for compatible iPhone®, iPad® and/or iPod touch®, and for smart devices running the AndroidTM operating system. The app can be downloaded free of charge from Apple’s App Store® and GooglePlayTM. SnapBridge can be used only with compatible cameras.

2. The camera’s built-in Bluetooth® capability can only be used to connect the camera to a smart device running the SnapBridge app, and to take advantage of SnapBridge features.

3. Because AF-P lenses incorporate a stepping motor, the number of compatible cameras is limited. Even for compatible cameras, firmware update may be required.

4. To automatically upload images to NIKON IMAGE SPACE, a Nikon ID must be registered. This is easily achieved via the [Nikon ID registration/change] menu in the SnapBridge app. An unlimited number and volume of images reduced to 2-megapixel equivalents can be uploaded to NIKON IMAGE SPACE only with upload via SnapBridge.

*Based on CIPA Standard. This value is achieved when DX-format compatible lenses are attached to a DX-format digital SLR camera and zoom lenses are set at the maximum telephoto position.

**SRP (Suggested Retail Price) listed only as a suggestion. Actual prices are set by dealers and are subject to change at any time.

Is the A Mount Dead?

A new rumour on Photo Rumors says that Sony is killing its A Mount line. This idea has been floating around for a long time now, and the lack of development has led many to suspect this.

While I understand that many people have invested in A-Mount gear, I think it makes sense for Sony to focus on e-mount going forward. It’s far more successful that A-Mount ever was, and it’s probably already reached more of a critical mass. If the A-Mount is no longer that successful, it’s unrealistic to expect Sony to keep producing cameras and lenses, although the argument could be made that the reason it isn’t as successful is because of the lack of development in recent years. It’s kind of like Apple’s typical m.o. for killing a product. They let something languish for years without any updates, and then when they kill it they say that no one was buying it anyway.

I do understand that if this is true though, a lot of A series camera owners will be really pissed off, and I guess, justifiably so, but I do think that e-mount is the future for Sony. (and the writing’s been on the wall for a while)

Of course, this is only a rumour, so it could be complete bulls**t.

Adobe Releases Photoshop Update 2015.5.1

Adobe has released a new update for Photoshop CC 2015. The update is primarily a bug fix update and contains the following fixes:

More details are available on Adobe’s Photoshop blog.