Nikon 1 V1 mirrorless camera: Tough, tidy and packed with tech

Nikon's brave new camera range has been bolstered by the daddy of the bunch, the Nikon 1 V1, a mirrorless tough "digital camera system" that combines high-end technologies with a tidy waistline and compact aspirations.

Like its also newly launched stablemate, the Nikon 1 J1, the Advanced Camera with Interchangeable Lens (A-CIL) V1 is a departure for Nikon, one of the most respected DSLR and film camera manufacturers in the world. However, there's so much tech crammed into its small, light body that it can still command a place in a prosumer's kit bag.

The presence of a HD viewfinder is a sure indication that Nikon has finally embraced mirrorless technology, although it matches that with its 10.1-megapixel CX-format (13.2 x 8.8mm) CMOS sensor, promising to deliver in low light situations.

There's also Full HD video recording on board, which can shoot at both 30 and 60fps depending on your tastes, and there's a mode to shoot continuous stills at 60 frames per second, if you keep your finger on the shutter button.

Two interesting features also run across the range; Motion Snapshot and Smart Photo Selector.

The first simultaneously records a slow motion movie and a still image and then combines them, offering up a moving photo. While the second takes 20 high resolution images when trying to shoot motion, automatically chooses and stores the best five, then displays the best on the LCD screen. The camera itself makes instant judgements based on facial expressions, composition and focus. It's an interesting idea, and one that Pocket-lint can't wait to try out.

Naturally, the other major selling point for the Nikon 1 range is the ability to use the company's new 1-mount interchangeable lenses. Four are available from launch, although one comes with the camera, depending on what kit you choose. The Nikon 1 V1 can also be enhanced with a proprietary external flash.

The Nikon 1 V1 will be available in the UK from 20 October 2011, and starts at £829.99 for the 10-30mm kit. It will be available in either black or white.