The 2017 BCN camera rankings are out – Canon is up, Nikon and Sony are down

BCN published their (preliminary?) camera rankings for 2017 and there are no big surprises:

DSLR cameras

In the DSLR category Nikon's market share continues to drop:

BCN award/
#2 #3
AWARD 2017 Canon Nikon Ricoh Imaging
AWARD 2016 Canon Nikon Ricoh Imaging
AWARD 2015 Canon Nikon Ricoh Imaging
AWARD 2014 Canon Nikon Ricoh Imaging (5.2%)

Compact (fixed lens) cameras

Nikon still has the #2 spot in the compact camera market (Coolpix) with a 22.1% market share - they actually gained 1.1% this year, probaboly thanks to a single model - the P900:

BCN award/
 #1 #2 #3
AWARD 2017 Canon Nikon Casio
AWARD 2016 Canon Nikon Casio
AWARD 2015 Canon Nikon Casio
AWARD 2014 Canon Nikon Sony

Mirrorless camera

In the mirrorless segment, Canon is #2 after Olympus (Sony's share is actully shrinking in the past 3 years: 34.3%->24.8%->17.9%):

BCN award/
#2 #3
AWARD 2017 Olympus Canon Sony
AWARD 2016 Olympus Sony Canon
AWARD 2015 Sony Olympus Panasonic
AWARD 2014 Olympus Sony Panasonic

Related posts:

Nikon market share in Japan for 2016 according to BCN ranking

2016 BCN camera rankings are out

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  • Vinnypimages

    Wow I am surprised how well Nikon’s integrated lens cameras are surviving. I would have thought Sony would be well ahead. Sony ILCs must also still be haemorrhaging money, lucky they have the money to play for the long game. I am definitely NOT surprised that Nikon are not making in-roads into action cameras ..

    • I really think all this is because of the P900. Imagine if they released the DL…

      • BVS

        What about the P900’s slightly smaller brethren like the B700?

        • maybe that sells also good with birders, but I see a lot of P900 cameras in the parks around me – obviously the data is just based on 2 parks next to my house 🙂

      • A. F.O.

        I have said it here long ago that….someone sometime in the future will click with one of the prototypes DL Nikon made. That would be a nice Nikon rumor 🙂

        • I still believe they bring it back to life.

          • Thom Hogan

            Probably too late now. The sensor size shift is continuing. 1″ is becoming a bit passe. They’d really need DX compacts with those specs, and while that can be done, getting them small enough is real engineering feat.

            • DX is even better. Regarding the size – see what Sony was able to do with the RX1. If Nikon wants to remain competitive, they should be able to achieve the same.

    • HD10

      Sony’s decline in market share in Japan is likely the result of Canon making significant inroads in mirrorless ILCs. While likely of little effect initially, Nikon’s entry into mirrorless will make the situation even worse.

      Sony however seems to be doing quite well in China with its A7/A9 series.

      No mention of Fuji.

      • Vinnypimages

        Nikon is still the biggest selling brand in China as far as I know.

        • HD10

          That may well be but it was quite a revelation to me that all the Mainland China tourists I saw in a week spent at the Canadian Rockies last month were all using Sony A7 and A9 series along with a few A6xxx. I did not see a single one of them with a Nikon. China is a huge market.

        • citrate

          Where is your source of information?
          Nikon cameras are not selling well comparing to Canon and Sony’s in recent years.

          • Where is your source of information?

      • Thom Hogan

        Panasonic has been on a long, slow slide of market share in Japan. They do best in SE Asia. But yes, some of Sony’s loss almost certainly has to be at Fujifilm’s gain.

        But folks, pay attention. Sony did with mirrorless what Nikon is saying they’ll do everywhere: go upscale. Sony gave up their market share pursuit for profit pursuit.

    • Thom Hogan

      I think you’re not looking at the numbers right. In DSLRs, Nikon lost huge market share directly to Canon. Ricoh (Pentax) has a very small bit, Sony’s old SLTs are non-existent. Nikon just simply didn’t iterate well at the low end of DSLRs, and Canon has things like the SL2, which is basically the best of both the DSLR and mirrorless world rolled into one small camera.

      In mirrorless, Sony went for high value (A7/A9) over volume (A5xxx/A6xxx), and it shows in market share.

  • HD10

    I would be interested to hear what accounts for Canon’s success in dSLRs. I think many here some idea as to why Nikon has declined in market share.

    • Pippo

      I say couple of words for Canon success in EastEurope. He moves here as copier company aside with cameras. Canon has support & repair team in every country. Nikon …nearest in Sweden, western-nordic Europe. People see Canon logo and go to the store and buy. No Nikon stores here, no support, but we have Canon, Sony, Pana, Ricoh
      In 1999 and 2002 I buy Canon at my place. All Nikons through internet – France, Germany, South Korea. Not all peoples are same fanatics, they need warranty at places. People don’t trust to Nikon.

      • Allan

        Thanks for the information.

      • sgredsch


        there are roughly 6 nikon service points in germany, every local photo gear retailer who has any dslr, also has nikon. you can buy nikon super teles in any bigger city at local retailers here in germany.

        ur statement is just wrong.

        • Allan

          Maybe he is referring to countries east of Germany.

          • Pippo

            Yes, you right 🙂

        • Scott Cushman

          He said “EastEurope” (sic), not Central Europe. If you live in the Baltic States, it’s very likely Sweden would be the closest repair center. Certainly closer and more likely to have a positive outcome than sending your camera to Moscow or Kyiv. It’s also closer than I have to send my cameras for repairs in America, but at least I don’t have to worry about the camera going through customs. Quite a few countries don’t have their own service centers–even some fairly large countries. Poles, for example, have to send their cameras to Czech Republic. It’s been a long time since I lived in Poland and Ukraine, but based on the experiences I had trying to get packages family members had mailed to me, there is no chance I would trust my D810 to the mail service in some places. In Ukraine especially, I always had to worry about having to pay import taxes on everything they sent assessed at ridiculous theoretical prices or having things smashed by over-zealous customs agents.

    • RC Jenkins

      I don’t think data from other regions is available; but I wouldn’t be surprised if the market share breakdown was similar. For US, you’d have to look into data from a US retail data aggregator, like Nielsen.

      My take regarding Canon vs. Nikon’s success for most consumers would be:
      ::Canon has better marketing, establishment, and perception. Canons are everywhere, and everyone probably knows someone with a 5DmarkIII.

      ::Canon has been better in video. Part of this is due to decisions they made decades ago regarding changing the mount–Canons don’t have the “can you change the aperture in live view / video?” complications, for example. They also have things like dual-pixel AF and generally better external recording. Most Nikons (esp. DX) don’t have power aperture or ability to change aperture in live view for most lenses!

      ::Canon hasn’t had the QC / reliability / complexity issues that have plagued some Nikons in the past few years.

      ::Canon’s lens compatibility is now as good or better than Nikon’s. The old “Nikon can use any F-mount lens” isn’t as relevant, when they don’t necessarily work well or completely compared to Canon, which now has 30 years of lenses + adapters for manual lenses–and the marketing behind “L glass.” Canon’s don’t have to worry about in-body AF motor, AI tab, aperture arm, etc.–or the costs associated with these. Have a Canon body? Grab a used lens from the 90’s–it will just work. Nikon? “It depends…”

      ::Canon’s AF was much better than most Nikon’s for a while, though I’d say now Nikon is comparable; and both are good. Those cross-type AF sensors Canon places everywhere really help.

      ::Canon has a stronger community of hackers. So they have things like magic lantern. Canon lenses also work with autofocus on Sony mirrorless cameras. And great external video. Most Nikons don’t have a lot of this.

      ::Canon has made more relevant products for lower-end cameras. For example, you can get a stabilized APS-C Canon 17-55mm F/2.8, or a 24mm F/2.8 pancake (35mm equivalent). Nikon has long neglected its DX lenses, sticking mainly to things like slow superzooms.

      ::Canon has released a more relevant mirrorless system than Nikon–and again, appropriate lenses beyond the slow zooms. It’s also priced competitively, where I’d say Nikon 1 is largely overpriced.

      I think all of this adds up.

      Nikon’s main (objective) bragging point today is generally “better DR.”

      I think Nikon’s response to all of this needs to be to shift focus towards a great, useable mirrorless system with excellent lenses for a variety of shooting styles–especially at the lower-mid end of the market: everything from $500 – $2000. While DSLRs are essentially established at this point, mirrorless still has room to grow and pick up new users and existing DSLR users. Nikon has a real opportunity to ‘reboot.’

      • Adam Fo

        You can compare the sales data listed in the companies financial reports which are online.
        I seem to recall from Nikon’s 2016 one their biggest single market is the EU followed by the States.

        • RC Jenkins

          You can, but it won’t provide realistic insight into things like market share because the data isn’t granular enough. For example, Canon sells printers as part of its imaging business; Nikon doesn’t. But they report to thid level of LoB.

      • Noajorspanos

        NPD is the market research company for the US photographic industry. They haven’t published 2017 info since most of the major manufactures are on a fiscal year that will end March 2018.

        • RC Jenkins

          NPD is one of many aggregators out there, not “the” market research company. They’re much (much) smaller than Nielsen.
          Numbers are often based on different sampling methods–which themselves depend on the research group’s various partnerships and abilities to identify products & categories. In general, the more relevant partnerships (& bigger the firm), the more data points there are, and the more accurate the numbers become. For example, you can see BCN’s partnerships here:

          Do you have a link to NPD’s 2016 numbers and sampling methods? Some data is better than no data… 🙂

    • Thom Hogan

      Haven’t accumulated it yet for 2017. But the trend has been the same: Nikon losing market share to Canon in DSLRs. Given Nikon’s global market share decline, it would almost have to be so.

  • Gerdy

    Canon has the best integrated lens cameras . The images of Sony are no quality. .
    Nikon ? In the middle of it .

  • HD10


  • HD10

    One of the ways by which the camera-phones manufacturers are trying to differentiate their offerings from the competition is by the photo capabilities of the cameras. Clearly there is a great interest in cameras that can take better photos as the phone makes it easy to upload and share these photos to social media sites and the cloud. Is this really beyond the means of the camera manufacturers to do?

    • Thom Hogan

      Welcome to the bandwagon I’ve been marching in for almost a decade now ;~). The answer to your question should be “no”. And yet it hasn’t happened in any reliable way yet.

      Moreover, the answer could very well be the same as what Apple did with the Watch: US$10/month add-on to your regular cellular number account. But to do that right would actually take more understanding of the user end than the camera companies have shown.

      For example, I want to take 45mp images from my D850, otherwise why would I have bought it? But I also want to post to, oh, say Facebook (I don’t, but let’s assume you do). I need RAW+Facebook JPEG. Not Small JPEG. Facebook JPEG. One that’s sized correctly for what Facebook (Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, uses as mainstream. And because that may change or I may use a service that’s different, I need to be able to set a RAW+User Defined JPEG.

      Because much of what is involved is a user problem, it just isn’t seen in the Japan design groups.

  • citrate

    This is not new data, published very early this year I think.

    • This is for 2017. They publish it every year.

      • karayuschij

        I think that they publish it in base of the 2016 numbers (2017 is not even finished)

        • I think those are their preliminary numbers (as I mentioned in my post). Or they already know that not much will change in the last month of the year.

    • plus the numbers are different from last year

      • citrate

        2017 rewards are for 2016 numbers.

        • they issued the 2016 numbers in January already – see link in post

          • citrate

            I have sent you the post published by Mirrorlessrumors back in Jan this year.
            You can cross-compare. The numbers you posted today are from last year.

    • Thom Hogan

      This is a head-scratcher, yes. Why are they posting this now, out of their usual sequence?

      • citrate

        You should ask why rumor sites are posting this now.
        BCN may have reorganized their website, but they published this back in Jan.

  • ZoetMB

    Oh…that’s just Japan. IMO, that doesn’t actually mean all that much. Japan is just 10.4% unit share of the ILC market, YTD. Asia (outside of Japan) is 37.6%, Europe is 26% and the Americas is 23.8%. Would love to see worldwide rankings.

    • You are true. Not to mention that the Japanese camera market is totally different than any other region on the planet.

    • Thom Hogan

      Nikon’s 5% slide in Japan equals a 1/2% slide overall, even if all the other markets showed no slide. For me, even a number that small would get my attention and I’d want to know why.

      • Nikon suffers from “False consensus effect”. They don’t operate like you TH…

  • RC Jenkins

    category = cameracameracamera

    • Google translation 🙂

  • surprised?

  • I wish they had an English version, I cannot get any info.

  • Enche Tjin

    In mirrorless category, all the top three are shrinking. Sign that Fuji is not far off.

    • RC Jenkins

      I agree–it’s certainly possible.

      For the 2017 awards, the top 3 take up 63.2% of market share.
      For 2016, it was 72.9%
      (2015 = 68.5%)

      The ‘main’ / ‘recent’ mirrorless manufacturers I can think of off the top of my head are:
      (I suspect much smaller ones below)
      ::Nikon 1

      Starting with the top 3 of 63.2%, #4 has a maximum market share of about 17.9%. This would only take the total to 81.1%.

      I think it’s realistic to assume both Panasonic & Fuji are somewhere around 15% each (for a grand total of about 93%; with Leica, Hasselblad, Nikon 1, etc. making up the remaining 7% total.

  • Zak Zoezie

    After all people having tried out mirrorless tech for a while, DSLR regain can start all over again when people really understand the PRO’s of it … The “lens compatibility” alone (without a bloody adapter) will already be the most important reason for this (and the millions of second hand lenses out there at a cheap price), in addition with a better price for both cameras & lenses (new and second hand), will ensure the revive & sustainability of the DSLR tech for many, many more decades to come. Only thing is, “mirrorless” addicts (as a limited group of people) do not see & get this yet and will never admit it because they are blinded by some technical specs that mirrorless has on the list and DSLRs don’t :o) Tech on its own does not sell to the masses, price vs value/quality does !

    • RC Jenkins

      Did a mirrorless camera hurt you in some way?

      Wanna talk about it?

      • Zak Zoezie

        @RC I just wanted to explain why DSLR sales will revive and mirrorless sales will further decline overall … The shown report is showing the first signs of this trend. You have a problem with that ?

        • RC Jenkins

          I don’t have a problem with your opinion or theory (though I disagree, which is fine). But your argument lacks facts and seems to based on a lack of direct experience.

          This report doesn’t show any ‘trend’ you’re attempting to explain: there is no relationship shown whatsoever in this report between DSLR sales and mirrorless sales. These are intra-category market shares, with no inter-category indicators. In fact, reports that do show absolute numbers show the opposite of what you’re saying.

          You seem almost threatened by mirrorless cameras, and you don’t seem to realize that mirrorless cameras do some things better than DSLRs.

          And critically, many of the mirrorless differentiators appeal more to “the masses” than the DSLR experience. One example is the live preview in an EVF. “The masses” aren’t experienced photographers who will predict how the final image will look different than what they see in an OVF.

          And when you look at numbers from sources like CIPA, it’s clear that mirrorless market share has been increasing relative to DSLR market share:

          In case you’re wondering, I primarily shoot full-frame Nikons & mirrorless cameras (mainly Fuji XPro2 now). For different applications. My DSLRs today inherently do some things better, while my mirrorless cameras do other things better.

          I’ve observed that mirrorless seems to resonate more with the type of more casual shooting that “the masses” do, and I use both to teach photography. DSLR for exposure (Framing + DoF + exposure) and mirrorless for a live preview of the image (Framing + DoF + brightness + motion blur + noise).

          To completely dismiss a type of camera mechanism just seems fanboy-ish. Sounds like a “DSLR-addict” argument.

  • Kob12

    Whaddaya know… Camera shipments are markedly up in FY 2017 because of Instagram…

    “One factor behind the rally is the photo-sharing app Instagram. More
    users are choosing high-value-added compact digital cameras to snap and post pictures that cannot be taken with a smartphone camera.”

  • Stuart Perry

    I work in camera sales, these numbers are far from what we are selling. So where are they getting their numbers?

    • What are the numbers for your camera store? Just curious.

      • Stuart Perry

        Numbers I can’t give you as that is with the owners, observation I can.
        We sell more Olympus, panasonic and fuji. Hardly anyone buys DSLR’s other than pros, and the compact market is completely owned by panasonic.

        • That makes sense – pros buy DSLRs, the rest buys mirrorless 🙂

    • Allan

      These numbers are for Japan.

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