Speaking at Photokina 2016, Nikon gave some clues today that it might be considering releasing a full-frame mirrorless camera.

To date, Nikon’s compact system camera models have featured a one-inch sensor, but the company has been a little quiet in this sector over the past twelve months. The company insists that it is still focused on the Nikon 1 range, with a lack of new products being down to longer product life cycles than before.

However, perhaps more interestingly for many, it appears the manufacturer is very closely eyeing what else is going on in the market.

Jordi Brinkman, Nikon’s European Product Group Manager revealed, “We are considering new concepts based on the Nikon 1 concept. The advantages of Nikon 1 is portability, speed, movie capabilities. We’re thinking about how we can use its strengths for new concepts that fit better with the demand from the market.”

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Sony’s full-frame Alpha 7 cameras, which have proven very popular, seems to be the benchmark for which Nikon is aiming.

“The Nikon 1 uses a one-inch sensor which is relatively small compared to FX and DX sensors,” Brinkman explained. “In this area we are very much aware of what’s happening, and we also look at the demand and the need – it’s something we are considering.”

“This is a growing sector, and the Sony Alpha 7 series is particularly strong.  Those cameras bring innovation, a new level of technology. They’re faster, lighter, the autofocus and movie technology – they bring that kind of innovation that is demanded.

“I’m not saying we’re announcing a full-frame mirrorless camera, but it’s definitely something we’re analysing a lot, looking at the market very closely; it’s on our radar.

“If we were to enter this market, we have to think about what kind of added value we would bring. We want to bring all our strengths from Nikon 1, all of its advantages, and how we can bring it all together.”

Considering Canon seems to finally be considering that its mirrorless models may be used by experienced enthusiasts and professionals, don’t be surprised if Nikon decides to go one-step further and produce something with a larger sensor in the near future – watch this space.

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Amy Davies
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Amy Davies is a journalist and photographer who has been published in a wide variety of places including TechRadar, Wired, Amateur Photographer, Photography Blog, ePhotoZine, What Digital Camera and more. She lives in Cardiff and has a penchant for sausage shaped dogs.

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