Groundbreaking Nikon news = code name Nikon VP650

Update: here is a scan of the magazine.

This just in (thanks J):

I'm sending you this tip I found in the most popular French photography magazine (the equivalent of popular photography in France) called "Chasseur d'Images" (maybe you've heard of it before). They're usually very VERY well informed because they've been here for a long time.
In their august issue, they're talking with A LOT of confidence (as if it was a sure thing) of a new Nikon product with the code name Nikon VP650 that should be announced in August and shipped in September. This camera would be a compact camera with a LED projector that could project up to  8x12 images in good quality in the dark. They are also stating that this projector could be manufactured by the company FoxLink (it's in Taiwan). If I'm sending you this, it's because I trust this magazine very much, because they've been right before, and because it came out on July 25th and they were already giving out the specs of the d3000 and the D300s!!  When I'm reading you're latest post and this news from Chasseur d'Images, it's seems to me that this compact with a projector is the groundbreaking news were waiting for.

The reader is refering to magazine #316 (July 21 - September 21 2009). Chasseur d'Images have indeed provided us with some good leaks in the past. This news combined with my previous posts (see here and here) will bump the rating of this rumor to 95%. Just what's with the name VP650 - hopefully this really is just a code name: VP = Video Projector?

Here is a link to "Foxlink developing micro projector". Apple, Nokia and Samsung are also planing to use this device.

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  • Zorro

    Hardly earth shattering. Yawn.

  • Hu…lame…?

  • blah! something for juppies

    we need new lenses!

  • Bjamy

    Ooooooh, I’m disapointed…. I was hoping for something…. bigger…. Fisheye AF-S’s, D4, D700x, lenses, etc.

  • Zenndott

    A projector is not of much interest for me, but I can see its uses.

    We could hardly expect to have another round of dslr / lens releases just after the D300s / D3000 announcement. That would make no sense.

  • Athos

    All well and good but a lot of us here are waiting for the d700x! C’mon Nikon, where is that 5Dmk2 killer!

  • David

    VP = Video Projector??

    • Jim

      Most likely.

  • Neil

    The bigger question is, will it sell? Personally I can’t imagine the usefulness of such a feature but then I didn’t think cameras in cell phones would be very useful when they were introduced. Maybe people will latch onto it. There’s been a rumor for a while now on macrumors that Apple may incorporate this projector into a later iPhone or iPod.

    • Mutt

      An even bigger question is, will it blend?
      Okay, it might be the bees knees to some folks, but I’d have far more use for a larger camera LCD over a projector anyday.

  • canphtoto

    If it has a DX sensor in it, then it would be cool

  • Gra

    ‘Groundbreaking’ for me would be announcement of the ‘curved’ imaging sensor that I read about somewhere, which replicates the human eyeball and gives truer depth to images.

    Groundbreaking for me could also be something like an integrated solar cell that continually charges your battery…you shoot more in the light than the dark…trickle charge that might net you 100-200 more photos…

    Nikon, you’ve worked hard to get pros back to the fold…even if you do a ‘boring’ prime lens release…please don’t do a projector from a P&S lol…imagine the battery life…like, Dmovies net you 5 minute clips limited to prevent sensor overheat…how long could a projector image last before it made your P&S go a bit warm…

    • I read an article in Science or Nature about such a sensor. However, “depth” has nothing to do with it. Compact optics are what it has to do with. Much of the bulk of lenses has to do with mapping onto a 2d surface. The sensor may only be a couple years away as far as feasability…but the optics haven’t even begun to be designed. The most likely applications will be camera-phones is my guess. They’d benefit most from the compact size. (How big is a rat’s eye? That would definitely fit in an iphone).

      LEDs are much more efficient than you’re used to. A compact LED projector that makes an 8×12 image would probably last hours. Hopefully not more than that–good lord I thought we’d seen the last of home slide shows!

      “Dmovie” brevity has nothing to do with sensor overheating–do some research. Also I assure you that 20+ minutes of live view in anything but the hottest weather doesn’t lead to overheating on either the d90 or the d300. I speak from experience.

      That all said–this projector thing is one of the most bone-headed things to come down the pipe in a long time. If it’s dirt cheap, ok then. But if it’s more than $300US, it’s going to be a flop. Unless it’s a 2k projector and I can use it to make slides from digital. That would be super.

  • The point is that you’re all reading into the word “groundbreaking” wrong. Groundbreaking doesn’t mean an updated version of a lens (AF-s 85mm f/1.4) or a camera (D4/D700x), it means something that’s completely new, never been done before. A camera with a built in projector would qualify as “groundbreaking”. (Side note: as would both of Gra’s ideas).

    I still don’t understand what the hurry is for an updated 85mm 1.4 anyway, it’s a spectacular lens as it is, it’s also very expensive and anybody planning on purchasing one has a camera with a motor focus, so the AF-D works fine. Same thing goes for the AF-s fisheyes that Bjamy’s asking for.

  • Chasseur d’Image is a magazine for stuff only

    the best is Réponses Photo.

    But in France we dont have a lot of magazine about photography… only 6

  • Alex

    I think they’re on to something revolutionary here. The D700x with the built in HD projector. film your movie on a dSLR, but you will also get to play it back for everyone to see! This is a marvelous idea! Will it have built-in editing software like the new iPhone, and built-in surround sound? 🙂

  • NikoDoby

    A Nikon D700 with a 24mp FF sensor that can project photos, video, and powerpoint slideshows from up to 6 meters away in full HD!!! It’ll be called the VP-700X

    Here’s a picture of what it will look like

    • Anonymous


      • Nature shooter

        “Help me Nikon, you’re my only hope…..”

    • Anonymous


  • onezilla

    Point & shoot plus point & project, wonder if it’s all handled w/ the same lens?
    Might be interesting.

  • Gary

    A projector in a camera seems like a novelty feature to me.

    I imagine some teens and college students may like it, to shine images onto a wall during parties, but I can’t see it being that useful.

    • 8×12 in inches is a no go at parties.

      However, it’d be perfect for projecting home made porn on the inside of the sheets.

      • Anonymous

        to be honest I think that’s the only use.

        Is the projector new and cool, yes.

        Does it have a purpose? I don’t think so. realistically everyone who cares about outputting it to something besides facebook has a television, mosyt likely HD and most likely bigger than 14 inches diagonal. So include a HDMI cable thats a few feet long and rolls back into the camera when not being used, that would be nice, instead of buying and carrying (or forgetting) an HDMI cable of your own.

  • Pdf Ninja

    Even though it would be a first, it sounds gimmicky. I’ll tell you what’s groundbreaking:
    1. Real HDR (TM): D4 with a sensor where the ISO sensitivity can be set for each pixel individually, so it can handle as much dynamic range as the eye.
    2. AF that finds the closest eye and always nails it.
    3. Compact with a DX sensor, f/1.8-f/2.8 lens.
    4. LCD that’s visible in direct sunlight (it’s possible, using the sun itself as a backlight).
    5. Compact with in-camera video editing.

  • Just a small point that needs correcting… the title of the French magazine being discussed is actually “Chasseur d’Images” (“Images” is plural… so, even in French, has an “s”) 8~/

  • low

    staying on top of it. good work NR!

  • HDZ

    World first again!! I LOVE NIKON!!!

  • YUEN

    apart from 650 , I also heard there is a 550 also !

  • Chris

    lenses please…

  • Anonymous

    you got this all wrong! not video project!

    it’s a special nikon designed for our VICE PRESIDENT of USA! 😀

  • grumps

    Just for Fun!
    How about a complete water proof (for scuba) D700 up with completely silent shutter (for weddings and film). I’m game (since I mentioned it), anyone else?
    85mm f/1.2 G, VRII AF-S Nano coating (Don’t yawn, you know who you are!)
    200mm f2.8 G, Macro, VRII AF-S Nano coating

  • Alex

    I also hope it has a built-in phone… I don’t want to have to carry a phone and a dSLR, i hope they can just merge the two, I want a GPS inside it (I know that’s not exactly a new idea), I still want that projector, camcorder, bedside alarm clock, iPod, fax machine, it needs to send photos and videos straight to Twitter and Facebook, it needs a built-in printer. It needs to communicate with other dSLRs and print out other peoples photos. Oh heck, no matter what silly stuff I can think of… it’s all coming in future dSLRs, every device is being merged in to one. Now, where can I buy fast lenses for my iPhone?

    • STJ

      This I believe that a projector kind of equalts to the build-in toaster we all need … 🙁
      How earth scattering groundbreaking! How does Nikon do this – it must be a thought similar to “Hey guys – we cannot really make small cameras that work, so how about putting in a lot of gadgets in them and we can claim we’re the first to do it?” As said above we’ll have a pho.. I mean camera with GPS, telephone, projector, wireless, printer etc etc. The most ground-breaking Nikon could do would be to make a small camera we would actually buy! They can make superb DSLR’s – how come compacts are so hard????

  • NikoDoby

    What if Nikon includes a carousel adapter with the VP650 so you can project your film slides as well as your powerpointing skills. Wouldn’t that be ground breaking enough for everyone?

  • Gra

    Yeah Niko.

    Ken Rockwell would use it, cos he doesn’t shoot digital anymore…

  • The D700x, yes.

    Honestly, what is so exciting or groundbreaking if this news is true?
    It says: “This camera would be a compact camera with a LED projector that could project up to 8×12 images in good quality in the dark.”.
    Sorry, but I do not find it groundbreaking or even exciting. Yes, new, but groundbreaking is, for me at least, too much because people would still rather view their photos on a computer instead of having them projected on a wall in the dark. On top of that, they already can view their photos on the back of their cameras and therefore they would still be better off doing that than viewing them in the dark on a wall.

    I would be much more excited with a D700x with 24.5MP and HD video at 1080p at $3000. That would be really exciting and, in many ways, groundbreaking (for me at least!).

  • Anonymous

    NR Admin, I checked you price watch page, and you’re saying that a D4000 is expected soon.

    Could this be the “ground-breaking” news?

  • Anonymous


  • Daf

    Nokia (+ rumored Apple) have been talking about including a projector in their phones for a while.

    Would probably be fun to have a projector to show photos to your friends if it’s any good. But I wouldn’t call it groundbreaking per-se.

    • Daf

      Ah – see it’s already mentioned in the item. Sorry didn’t finish reading it.

  • cra

    I just send the Admin the pdf of the article in question. Is a download 10x only link, so I guess he’ll move the pdf’s to his server before posting the link…

  • cra

    By the way. The article mentioned is the editorial on page 3 (1: front, 2: advertsing, 3: editorial) and so pretty important.

  • Mikeg76

    Its groundbreaking because no other camera has it yet. I’m sure that within a year all of them will though, similar to the video fiasco.

  • Ed

    Once upon a time, Nikon made excellent point and shoots, I loved my CP990, but that was 9 years ago. Now, they just put their name on one manufactured under contract by someone else. They are just a commodity item without the level of quality they once had. Of course, that CP990 cost $1000 when it first came out.

    When they actually build a camera in their own factories, they do it right.

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