Canon’s advantages (1080p video in DSLR and G11) will end soon

credit: KameraBild

KameraBild (translated) published a video interview with Johan Kling, the head of Nikon Sweden. Some interesting comments:

He think that it is "highly likely" that future Nikon DSLR cameras will have both 720p and 1080p video.

He also talked about the gap in the high-end Nikon compacts segment (think Canon G11 or EVIL). The Nikon P5000 and P6000 has not been a success. Nikon Sweden seems to be convinced that engineers in Japan are working on a new model to successfully compete in that category.

The bottom line of this interview (form NikonRumors perspective) is that Canon currently has advantage with 1080p video in DSLRs and the G11 model and this will end soon. I say cheers to that!

I aways struggle with translation. If anyone has a better translation, please post it in the comments section and I will update this post. Thanks.

Detailed translation after the break (thanks Andreas):

- First he talks about the 7 new Coolpix, and about the importance to Nikon of competing in this market segment. He thinks this market is a hard market, but that they see that Nikon is doing increasingly better. He says it’s a large market for compacts, and that Nikon will increase their market share.

- The interviewer insinuates that Nikon has had focus on DSLR’s at the expense of compacts. The Nikon guy fully agrees to this statement, saying that main focus has been on DSLR’s and lenses. He further says that we have seen for the last two years an increasing focus towards compacts, and that this trend will continue. The interviewer says that Nikon will increase their market share from 13% to 15% (not sure if this is official Nikon statement, but it sounds like that from the way it’s said. Also not sure if this is the Swedish market share, or what).

- In order to increase the market share, the Nikon rep says that the cameras must be sufficiently good, have an appealing design, and overall have the right functions/specs. Most important is the sales channels, though. If they cannot get into major distributor chains, they will have difficulties reaching the required sales numbers (this is said as a general comment, not necessarily hinting that Nikon struggles with the sales chains…). He does say that the focus on DSLR’s from Nikon has somewhat also been the attitude from the major sales chains (El-giganten & MediaMarkt as examples, similar stores as Best Buy in the US), i.e. that DSLR’s are Nikon but compacts are any other brands.

- He further comments on the fact that one of the new compacts comes in 7 colors, that the color variety is important. He says that they saw from S220 (S3000’s preceeding camera), availbale in 5 colors, sold very good in all but “1 or 2″ colors. From this he concludes that customers wants to find “their color” and that black and silver is “out” in the lowest price classes. In the higher price classes, however, silver and black is the way to go. He comments further that the colors comes from Japan, and that it could be difficult to find colors that suit all continents.

- In a press conference, the Nikon guy had stated that Nikon is good in the lowest and highest price classes (understood to mean low end compacts and DSLR’s), states the interviewer, and further asks why Nikon does not have an product in the class of Canon G11. The Nikon rep agrees, and says that Nikon is asking themselves the same question. He says that they can only apologize for not having “a product similar to the G….. 11″ (a bit hesitant there!) He further says that they did have the P5000 and P6000, and he hopes that the Nikon development team is working on this issue. “My personal opinion is that they are doing this, guaranteed. Hopefully within the near future we will see something similar [to the G11]“.

- The interviewer asks how the top P-line compared to G11 in terms of sales. The Nikon rep says that the G11 market is small, but important, since many professionals want’s “RAW, etc.” He further says that there a gap to fill, and that it should be natural that also Nikon is represented in this marked.

- Being asked which of the now introduced new models will sell the most and be most important, he says that S3000 will sell the most, followed by L21 and L22, meaning the lowest cost models. The most important of the new cameras to Nikon are P100 and S8000, and hopes that the end users and critics will give them a good reception, since these are the high-end cameras and Nikon wants to increase their market share in this market segment.

- P100 has full HD, as opposed to Nikons DSLR’s, says the interviewer, further asking if full HD isn’t something that should be available also in the DSLR’s. The Nikon rep says that yes, they should, since this is being increasingly asked for by customers, and that we have to see what comes in the future. He does say, though, that it’s a question about use of the movies, and that for DSLR’s the main user group is new photographers that delivers news for the web and that 1080p can then give too large files, so that a trade off has been made for the movie function in the DSLR’s. However, “in the future one would likely be able to choose the format”. Being asked if a prosumer DSLR will get full HD, he says that he can not confirm this, but that his personal speculation is that it’s quite likely that Nikon, Canon and others will offer different [movie] formats in the DSLR’s.

- Being asked if they have learned anything from the movie function in their cameras so far, he says that there’s an incredible amount of knowledge being obtained in the last couple of years, and that this is fed back to the developers in Tokyo. He can not comment on the specifics of this, but it’s related to format, stereo microphone, handling of movies in the camera such as retouching abilities in-camera, etc. They have taken their first steps with respect to this and it has been an enormous success with movies in DSLR’s, he says, and we will see even more of this in the future.

- On the topic of movie compression in the compacts (h264) vs. DSLR’s (mjpeg) and why they differ, he says this is likely due to Nikon aiming the functions towards the user, the compacts being used for shorter clips on youtube, etc, and that this is likely caused by the user perspective. On asked whether he takes movies with his own camera, he states that he certainly does, mostly taking films of his son, but that he hasn’t yet gotten started on post-processing but leaves them as-shot. Isn’t that what most people does, the interviewer asks. “Yes, I think so”, the Nikon rep replies as the end comment to the interview.

Well, there you have it. A long post, I know… Anyways, one get’s the impression from the Nikon guy that he doesn’t really know that much, but rather speculates and offers quite expected answers to the questions.

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