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Nikon’s countdown clock was actually out by several hours, but it’s finally made those mirrorless camera systems official anyway: behold the Nikon J1 and V1, snappers with compact size and snazzy lenses you can switch out at will. They can even take photos before you press the shutter button – seriously.

The premise is relatively similar to Micro Four Thirds shooters and Sony’s NEX cameras: the Nikon J1 and V1 offer smaller chassis than your regular DSLRs, but all the flexibility of different lenses.

Up first is the Nikon J1, aimed at compact upgraders, with a 10.1MP CMOS sensor, HDMI out and 1080p video recording, a 3-inch LCD screen, and 10fps still shot speed, or 1200fps slow-mo. It comes with a built in flash, like Olympus’ E-PL line.

The Nikon V1 meanwhile is designed more for DSLR users and pros who want more accessories and quality: it uses the same sensor and dual-core image processor, but an electronic viewfinder, external flash, hotshoe for accessories and a plusher metal finish.

Purists might be put off by the comparatively small sensor (13.2mm x 8.8mm) and low ISO 3200 – we’d be surprised if lowlight performance outperformed Sony’s NEX cameras – but that incredible frame rate and software features, such as Smart Photo Selector, which grabs a bunch of pictures in burst for you to choose from, may well make up for this.

Alongside the two new models are a range of lenses, including 10mm, 10-30mm, 30-110mm and 10-100mm, an F-mount adaptor that lets you use another NIKKOR lenses, and external flash and GPS units.

The whole caboodle ships from 20 October, with prices starting at £549.99 for the Nikon J1 with 10-30mm lens kit, and £829.99 for the Nikon V1 with the same lens.

Excited by what you see? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

  • http://twitter.com/krislord Kris Lord

    “Nikon J1 and V1 arrive: Is the end nigh for NEX?”

    I think the headline is a bit misleading – Nikon announced a camera with a smaller sensor, larger body with a higher price than the NEX3 and NEX5. I’m sure Sony couldn’t be more happier.

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