Nikon 1 AW1 Summary
Nikon 1 AW1 Assessment
The Nikon 1 AW1 is absolutely unique. It is the only waterproof or shockproof interchangeable lens camera every made. Its relatively large 1" CMOS sensor provide it with image-quality superior to all other waterpoof cameras. This makes it an obvious choice for anyone serious about underwater photography but not able to spend on a DSLR submersible casing or willing to deal with the bulk and complexity of such a system.
Image quality of this mirrorless depends on what it is compared against. Its 2.7X crop-factor sensor puts it well ahead of most fixed-lens cameras, including all other waterproof camera, yet it reamains behind the majority of mirrorless ones.
Still, the AW1 produces clean images up to ISO 400 and reasonable results until ISO 6400 for small 4x6" prints. Metering, color and white-balance are all quite good. Even though it offers on-sensor Phase-Detect AF, the 1 AW1 is not as fast as we expected from a mirrorless camera.
Compared to other waterproof cameras, the AW1 is miles ahead. The quality of its images at high ISO becomes incredibly useful underwater where light levels are low and slow shutter-speeds are not an option. On land, users will miss stabilization among waterproof lenses and so may end up buying lenses with overlapping focal-lengths.
|Waterproof and shockproof construction||Above average image noise for a mirrorless|
|Excellent metering||General image softness|
|Realistic image colors||Limited dynamic range|
|Good white-balance||Limited lens selection|
|Usable up to ISO 6400 for small prints||Wrong framing of video in image mode|
|Fast Phase-Detect AF||Unresponsive at times|
|Class-leading continuous drive||Not Exposure-Priority LCD|
|Quick shutter-lag||Very few direct controls|
|Ultra quiet||Short battery-life|
|Sharp and crisp LCD with fast refresh rate||Average Average|
Nikon AW1 Highlights
Sensor-Size: 13 x 9mm
Actual size when viewed at 100 DPI
|14 Megapixels Mirrorless||ISO 160-6400|
|Nikon 1 Mount|
|Waterproof to 15m||Full manual controls, including Manual Focus|
|Weatherproof down to -10C||Custom white-balance with 2 axis fine-tuning|
|60 FPS Drive, 60 Images||Spot-Metering|
|1920x1080 @ 30 FPS Video Recording||Lithium-Ion Battery|
|3" LCD 920K Pixels||Secure Digital Extended Capacity|
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