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09-19-2013, 03:21 AM   #1
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Nikon 1 AW1: Hands-on with the world's first waterproof compact system camera

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Not content with the norm, Nikon has only gone and announced the Nikon 1 AW1 - the world's first waterproof compact system camera. We would like to say the first waterproof interchangeable lens camera, but there was a film DSLR back in the day. But digital, it's all new.

Now that's rather nifty isn't it? Waterproof up to 15 metres deep - we were only able to test it in about 30cms of water - the Nikon 1 AW1 comes with the option of two waterproof lenses: the 11-27.5mm (30-75mm equivalent) f/3.5-5.6 standard kit zoom, or the standalone 10mm (27mm equivalent) f/2.8 that's sold separately.

If you're unfamiliar with the Nikon 1 series, then think of a miniaturised SLR with digital components. The system - which also has J- and V-series models - means it's possible to swap out lenses for different views onto the world, or to benefit from more advanced optical qualities, and as the AW1 is from the broader Nikon 1 familiy it's also compatible with all the standard, non-waterproof lenses too. Just don't forget which lens you have on the front before going diving.

It's not just waterproof either, the camera is also said to be dustproof, freezeproof to -10C and shockproof. The first two we couldn't test, but we did drop the AW1 on the floor which, despite being an awful lot of fun, resulted in no damage to the camera, only to the wooden floor. The fact the lenses are shock-proof ought to give them appeal for those who knock their kit about a bit too.
Nikon 1 AW1: Hands-on with the world's first waterproof compact system camera - Pocket-lint






09-19-2013, 04:17 AM   #2
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I'm actually pretty interested in this guy, just the price is so high for me. A waterproof ILC is pretty crazy.
09-19-2013, 05:11 AM   #3
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Again a missed opportunity for Pentax.
09-19-2013, 05:51 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by NickLarsson Quote
Again a missed opportunity for Pentax.
Fortunately Pentax didn't miss anything. Pentax, being just a badge with 6 letters, is comfortable sitting in a drawer until something is drawn, designed, and, gosh, maybe even manufactured by its owner.

I remember Nikonos of decades ago; a funny looking underwater little brick. Now Nikon repeats the same recipe. So it's not exactly a missed out opportunity for Ricoh, but rather Nikon playing the same old tune.



09-19-2013, 06:50 AM   #5
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Waterproof, dropproof ILC? Pretty awesome..
09-19-2013, 07:15 AM   #6
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Cool, but like all 1 series cameras, it's overpriced.
09-19-2013, 07:36 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by kenafein Quote
Cool, but like all 1 series cameras, it's overpriced.
The last gen 1 series went on fire sale lately and was really cheap...

09-19-2013, 07:49 AM - 1 Like   #8
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Need to put a "do not change lenses while underwater" in front of the camera....
09-19-2013, 09:20 AM   #9
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As someone whose (non SLR) travel kit consisted of a 'firesale' J1 and ageing Optio W90 until recently, this is something I've already wished for and thought 'Nah, Nikon are too conservative'. Wouldn't pay the asking price for one but interested to see how it fares nonetheless.

Last edited by digitalCG; 09-19-2013 at 10:36 AM. Reason: spelling burp
09-19-2013, 09:56 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Andi Lo Quote
The last gen 1 series went on fire sale lately and was really cheap...
Yeah, funny how at $900(V1) nobody wanted one and at $300 everyone did. It's a great camera, but Nikon doesn't know how to price them. Then they say nobody wants mirror-less cameras. Maybe they can't make a profit at 300, but there is stiff competition in the mirror-less world and their small sensor camera does get scoffed at by some.
09-19-2013, 12:17 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Uluru Quote
Fortunately Pentax didn't miss anything. Pentax, being just a badge with 6 letters, is comfortable sitting in a drawer until something is drawn, designed, and, gosh, maybe even manufactured by its owner.

I remember Nikonos of decades ago; a funny looking underwater little brick. Now Nikon repeats the same recipe. So it's not exactly a missed out opportunity for Ricoh, but rather Nikon playing the same old tune.
True, but I think that a rugged version of the Q could have been pretty cool.
09-19-2013, 02:18 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by NickLarsson Quote
True, but I think that a rugged version of the Q could have been pretty cool.
I totally agree. And you can call me Mr Oldfashioned, but with Ricoh and their Pentax brand ... uh, I'd love them do their homework in K-mount in the atmosphere of breathable air first ...
09-19-2013, 02:28 PM   #13
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This looks like a really interesting camera. A nice way to get better IQ than those compacts- but I bet it's nowhere near as durable.

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09-19-2013, 02:40 PM   #14
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I have to agree with those who think this was a missed opportunity, if Ricoh/Pentax was trying to position themselves as the rugged, outdoors brand.

In fairness, I guess they could still release a weather-proof Q and some new WR lenses. Assuming there are no funky notches or air channels in the Q mount itself. And being smaller, the Q mount should be easier to seal than the Nikon CX mount, and could be rated deeper.
09-19-2013, 02:50 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
This looks like a really interesting camera. A nice way to get better IQ than those compacts- but I bet it's nowhere near as durable.
It may not be as durable, but I'm going with the thought that waterproof is better than WR in rain. On the other hand, I just got myself a Q so I wouldn't get the AW1 anytime soon, but maybe in the future when it's on a fire sale.
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