Nikon is Planning to Stop the SLR Camera; What’s Next?

Nikon, a Japanese camera manufacturer, is planning to discontinue the production of its popular SLR cameras to focus on digital offerings. As smartphone cameras become more competitive, the company is being pushed to this position.

Most smartphones today, particularly high-end ones from Apple and Samsung, have excellent cameras that compete with DSL cameras. According to a Nikkei report, Canon now intends to focus resources on mirrorless cameras, which have become mainstream products due to more advanced digital technologies.

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Nikon’s SLR cameras have been used by professional photographers for over 60 years and have become synonymous with the Japanese company. Nikon’s cameras are losing ground to smartphones, which are increasingly equipped with powerful cameras, and Nikon intends to outperform them by offering products with more distinctive features.

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No new SLR models have been released since Nikon launched its flagship D6 SLR in June 2020. The company has already ceased production of compact digital cameras, and Nikon will now concentrate on digital mirrorless cameras, but the production and distribution of existing SLR models will continue.

Nikon is the world’s second-largest SLR manufacturer, trailing only Canon. An SLR camera uses a mirror to reflect the image seen through the viewfinder. Nikon was founded in 1917, and the company name was adopted in 1946. It introduced its first SLR camera in 1959 and has long been regarded favorably by professional photographers and journalists. It made a name for itself by providing high-quality alternatives to German brands such as Leica, which once dominated the market.

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Nikon had made the transition to digital SLRs by the late 1990s. It sold over 400,000 SLR cameras last year, competing head-to-head with global leader Canon. Ricoh also manufactures SLR cameras under the Pentax brand. Mirrorless cameras use image sensors to convert light into electrical signals and have a different viewing system. They, like SLRs, can accept interchangeable lenses that provide significantly more range than the fixed focal lengths found in most smartphone cameras. A fixed amount that has not changed in 60 years has been a feature of Nikon cameras, allowing photographers to use a wide range of old lenses on recent SLRs.

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Mirrorless camera shipments surpassed SLR shipments for the first time in 2020, with 2.93 million and 2.37 million units shipped, respectively, according to Japan’s Camera & Imaging Products Association. However, there has been a general decline. The total market peaked at 11.67 million cameras in 2017 but is expected to fall to 5.34 million by 2021.

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