Nikon 1 J5 Comparison Review
The Nikon 1 J5 is a mirrorless interchangeable lens camera that was announced in April 2015 and is equipped with an one-inch sensor. It offers a resolution of 20.7 megapixel.
Is the Nikon 1 J5 a good camera? The J5 has a Camera Elo of 2199. This rating puts the J5 below average of all mirrorless interchangeable lens cameras. In terms of its sensor size category (one inch cameras), the J5 also ranks below average. – Well, the Nikon 1 J5 is more than 6 years old, and there have been many other good digital cameras released since 2015.
|Nikon 1 J5|
|Mirrorless system camera|
|Nikon 1 mount lenses|
|20.7 MP, 1" Sensor|
|ISO 160 - 12 800|
|no viewfinder, LCD framing|
|3.0 LCD, 1037k dots|
|60 shutter flaps per second|
|250 shots per battery charge|
|98 x 60 x 32 mm, 231 g|
Read on to find out more about the camera's size, sensor, features, reception by expert reviewers, and how it compares to other digital cameras.
Body comparison with a credit card
An illustration of the physical dimensions of the Nikon 1 J5 vis-à-vis a credit card is provided in the side-by-side display below. Three consecutive perspectives from the front, the top, and the back are presented. All size dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter.
The table below summarizes the key physical specs of the Nikon 1 J5 alongside a set of similar cameras. If you want to review a particular camera pair side-by-side, just move across to the CAM-parator tool and choose from the broad selection of possible comparisons there.
|1.||Nikon 1 J5||98 mm||60 mm||32 mm||231 g||250||n||Apr 2015||399|
|2.||Canon SX720||110 mm||64 mm||36 mm||270 g||250||n||Feb 2016||379|
|3.||Canon G9 X||98 mm||58 mm||31 mm||209 g||220||n||Oct 2015||529|
|4.||Canon SX710||113 mm||66 mm||35 mm||269 g||230||n||Jan 2015||349|
|5.||Canon 1200D||130 mm||100 mm||78 mm||480 g||500||n||Feb 2014||449|
|6.||Nikon 1 V3||111 mm||65 mm||33 mm||381 g||310||n||Mar 2014||799|
|7.||Nikon 1 J4||100 mm||60 mm||29 mm||232 g||300||n||Apr 2014||549|
|8.||Sony HX80||102 mm||58 mm||36 mm||245 g||390||n||Mar 2016||349|
|9.||Sony HX90V||102 mm||58 mm||36 mm||245 g||360||n||Apr 2015||429|
|10.||Sony A5000||110 mm||63 mm||36 mm||269 g||420||n||Jan 2014||449|
|11.||YI M1||114 mm||64 mm||34 mm||281 g||450||n||Sep 2016||349|
|Notes: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as add-on or interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.|
The listed prices provide an indication of the market segment that the manufacturer of the cameras have been targeting. The Nikon 1 J5 was launched in the US market at a price of $399. Usually, retail prices stay at first close to the launch price, but after several months, discounts become available. Later in the product cycle and, in particular, when the replacement model is about to appear, further discounting and stock clearance sales often push the camera price considerably down. Then, after the new model is out, very good deals can frequently be found on the pre-owned market.
Sensor comparison with a 35mm slide
The size of the imaging sensor is a crucial determinant of image quality. A large sensor will generally have larger individual pixels that offer better low-light sensitivity, provide wider dynamic range, and have richer color-depth than smaller pixels in a sensor of the same technological generation. Further, a large sensor camera will give the photographer additional creative options when using shallow depth-of-field to isolate a subject from its background. On the downside, larger sensors are more costly to manufacture and tent to lead to bigger and heavier cameras and lenses.
The Nikon 1 J5 features an one-inch sensor and has a format factor (sometimes also referred to as "crop factor") of 2.7. Within the spectrum of camera sensors, this places the Nikon 1 J5 among the medium-sized sensor cameras that aim to strike a balance between image quality and portability.
Consistent information on actual sensor performance is available from DXO Mark for most cameras. This service is based on lab testing and assigns an overall score to each camera sensor, as well as ratings for dynamic range ("DXO Landscape"), color depth ("DXO Portrait"), and low-light sensitivity ("DXO Sports"). The table below summarizes the physical sensor characteristics and sensor quality findings and compares them across a set of similar cameras.
|1.||Nikon 1 J5||1-inch||20.7||5568||3712||4K/15p||21.1||12.0||479||65|
|3.||Canon G9 X||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||1080/60p||21.5||12.3||495||63|
|6.||Nikon 1 V3||1-inch||18.2||5232||3488||1080/60p||20.8||10.7||384||52|
|7.||Nikon 1 J4||1-inch||18.2||5232||3488||1080/60p||20.8||10.7||426||53|
|11.||YI M1||Four Thirds||20.2||5184||3888||4K/30p||..||..||..||..|
Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but can also record movies. The J5 indeed provides movie recording capabilities. The highest resolution format that the J5 can use is 4K/15p.
Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. The adjacent tables list some of the other core features of the Nikon 1 J5 along with similar information for a selection of comparators.
|1.||Nikon 1 J5||none||n||3.0 / 1037||tilting||Y||1/4000s||60.0||Y||n|
|2.||Canon SX720||none||n||3.0 / 922||fixed||n||1/3200s||5.9||Y||Y|
|3.||Canon G9 X||none||n||3.0 / 1040||fixed||Y||1/2000s||6.0||Y||Y|
|4.||Canon SX710||none||n||3.0 / 922||fixed||n||1/3200s||6.0||Y||Y|
|5.||Canon 1200D||optical||n||3.0 / 460||fixed||n||1/4000s||3.0||Y||n|
|6.||Nikon 1 V3||optional||n||3.0 / 1037||tilting||Y||1/4000s||60.0||Y||n|
|7.||Nikon 1 J4||none||n||3.0 / 1037||Fixed||Y||1/4000s||60.0||Y||n|
|8.||Sony HX80||638||n||3.0 / 922||tilting||n||1/2000s||10.0||Y||Y|
|9.||Sony HX90V||638||n||3.0 / 921||tilting||n||1/2000s||10.0||Y||Y|
|10.||Sony A5000||none||n||3.0 / 461||tilting||n||1/4000s||3.5||Y||n|
|11.||YI M1||none||n||3.0 / 1040||fixed||Y||1/4000s||5.0||n||n|
The LCD screen on the Nikon 1 J5 is flexibly attached to the body. In particular, the LCD can be tilted vertically to facilitate odd-angle shots in landscape orientation. This tilting design is often preferred, for example, by street photographers to a fully articulated, swivel type of LCD attachment, as it is more unobtrusive during shooting than a screen that flips out to the side.
One convenient feature of the J5 is the presence of an on-board flash. While this built-in flash is not very powerful, it can at times be useful as a fill-in light to brighten deep shadow areas.
For some imaging applications, the extent to which a camera can communicate with its environment can be an important aspect in the camera decision process. The table below provides an overview of the connectivity of the Nikon 1 J5 and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.
Mic / Speaker
|1.||Nikon 1 J5||-||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-|
|2.||Canon SX720||-||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-|
|3.||Canon G9 X||-||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-|
|4.||Canon SX710||-||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-|
|5.||Canon 1200D||Y||mono / mono||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-|
|6.||Nikon 1 V3||-||stereo / mono||Y||-||mini||2.0||Y||-||-|
|7.||Nikon 1 J4||-||stereo / mono||-||-||mini||2.0||Y||-||-|
|8.||Sony HX80||-||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-|
|9.||Sony HX90V||-||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-|
|10.||Sony A5000||-||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-|
|11.||YI M1||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||Y|
It is notable that the J5 offers wifi support. Wifi can be a very convenient means to transfer image data to an off-camera location.
While the specs-based evaluation of cameras is instructive in revealing their potential as photographic tools, it remains incomplete and does no justice, for example, to the way the J5 handle or perform in practice. At times, user reviews, such as those published at amazon, address these issues in a useful manner, but such feedback is on many occasions incomplete, inconsistent, and unreliable. This is where reviews by experts come in. The following table reports the overall rankings of the cameras as published by some of the major camera review sites (amateurphotographer [AP], cameralabs [CL], digitalcameraworld [DCW], dpreview [DPR], ephotozine [EPZ], photographyblog [PB]).
|1.||Nikon 1 J5||..||..||..||..||4.5/5||4.5/5||Apr 2015||399|
|2.||Canon SX720||..||+||..||..||4/5||4.5/5||Feb 2016||379|
|3.||Canon G9 X||3.5/5||+ +||..||..||4.5/5||4.5/5||Oct 2015||529|
|4.||Canon SX710||..||+||..||..||4/5||3.5/5||Jan 2015||349|
|5.||Canon 1200D||3/5||+||..||..||4/5||4.5/5||Feb 2014||449|
|6.||Nikon 1 V3||3/5||..||..||76/100||4.5/5||4/5||Mar 2014||799|
|7.||Nikon 1 J4||3/5||..||..||..||4.5/5||4/5||Apr 2014||549|
|8.||Sony HX80||..||..||..||..||..||..||Mar 2016||349|
|9.||Sony HX90V||4/5||+ +||..||..||4/5||4.5/5||Apr 2015||429|
|10.||Sony A5000||3/5||+||..||..||4.5/5||4.5/5||Jan 2014||449|
|11.||YI M1||..||..||..||69/100||..||..||Sep 2016||349|
|Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (..) not available.|
The review scores listed above should be treated with care, though. The ratings were established in reference to similarly priced cameras that were available in the market at the time of the review. Thus, a score needs to be put into the context of the launch date and the launch price of the camera, and comparisons of ratings among very different cameras or across long time periods have little meaning. Also, kindly note that some of the listed sites have over time developped their review approaches and their reporting style.
Nikon 1 J5 FAQ
Below are some additional questions and answers concerning some particular features of the J5.
What type of imaging sensor is used in the J5?
The camera features a BSI-CMOS (Backside Illuminated Complementary Metal–Oxide–Semiconductor) sensor.
Which image processing chip is used to convert the raw signal into an image file and perform noise reduction and image sharpening?
Nikon equipped the J5 with the EXPEED 5 image processor.
What is the ISO sensitivity range of the J5?
The camera has a native sensitivity range from ISO 160 to ISO 12800.
Does the camera have a selfie-friendly screen?
Yes, the LCD-screen of the J5 is flexible and can be turned to be front-facing for capturing selfies.
What is the life expectancy of the shutter in the Nikon 1 J5?
Nikon does not publish a shutter rating for the J5. Yet, shutters in comparable cameras from other manufacturers are said to be good for at least 100 000 actuations. It should be noted, though, that this number represents a Mean Time before Failure. The shutter might fail earlier, or it might last longer. Anyway, in order to exhaust an expected shutter life of 100 000 shots over, say, three years, one would have to take about 100 pictures each and every day.
How do I find the shutter count on my J5?
Nikon embeds the number of shutter actuations in image metadata. You can check the number of shots that your J5 has taken up to now by uploading a recent image to the free online shutter count finder app.
Is completely silent shooting possible with the Nikon 1 J5?
The camera has an electronic shutter option, so that it is indeed feasible to capture images without any shutter noise.
Do I need to purchase an external camera trigger to shoot time-lapse sequences?
No, the Nikon 1 J5 has an intervalometer built-in, so that low frequency shooting (for example, flower blooming, sunset, moon rise) can be undertaken without the need to purchase a separate external intervalometer and related software.
Does the Nikon 1 J5 feature an autofocus assist light?
Yes, the camera has a lamp built-in that can illuminate the subject and improve autofocus in low-light settings.
Does the Nikon 1 J5 support the Ultra High Speed (UHS) bus interface for SD cards?
Yes, the camera can indeed use UHS-I cards (data transfer speed of up to 104 MB/s).
Which battery does the J5 use?
The camera gets its power from the EN-EL24, which is a rechargeable Lithium-Ion power pack.
Camera to camera comparisons
If you would like to see a side-by-side review of this and another camera, just use the search menu below. There is also a set of direct links to comparison reviews that other users of the CAM-parator app explored.
- Canon 50D vs Nikon 1 J5
- Canon 650D vs Nikon 1 J5
- Canon G1 X Mark III vs Nikon 1 J5
- Canon XC10 vs Nikon 1 J5
- Fujifilm X-M1 vs Nikon 1 J5
- Fujifilm XP120 vs Nikon 1 J5
- Leica S3 vs Nikon 1 J5
- Nikon 1 J5 vs Olympus E-520
- Nikon 1 J5 vs Olympus E-M10
- Nikon 1 J5 vs Olympus E-PL3
- Nikon 1 J5 vs Olympus E-PL7
- Nikon 1 J5 vs Sony NEX-C3
|Camera Model||Nikon 1 J5|
|Camera Type||Mirrorless system camera|
|Camera Lens||Nikon 1 mount lenses|
|Launch Date||April 2015|
|Launch Price||USD 399|
|Sensor Format||1" Sensor|
|Sensor Size||13.2 x 8.8 mm|
|Sensor Area||116 mm2|
|Sensor Diagonal||15.9 mm|
|Sensor Resolution||20.7 Megapixels|
|Image Resolution||5 568 x 3 712 pixels|
|Pixel Pitch||2.37 μm|
|Pixel Density||17.79 MP/cm2|
|Moiré control||no AA filter|
|Movie Capability||4K/15p Video|
|ISO Setting||160 - 12 800 ISO|
|Image Processor||EXPEED 5|
|DXO Sensor Quality (score)||65|
|DXO Color Depth (bits)||21.1|
|DXO Dynamic Range (EV)||12.0|
|DXO Low Light (ISO)||479|
|Viewfinder Type||No viewfinder|
|Top-Level Screen||no Top Display|
|LCD Framing||Live View|
|LCD Size||3.0 inch|
|LCD Resolution||1037k dots|
|LCD Attachment||Tilting screen|
|V-logging Friendliness||Front-flip possible|
|Focus System||On-Sensor Phase-detect|
|Manual Focusing Aid||no Peaking Feature|
|Maximum Shutter Speed||1/4000s|
|Continuous Shooting||60 shutter flaps/s|
|Shutter Life Expectancy||100 000 actuations|
|Silent Shooting||Electronic Shutter|
|Time Lapse Photography||Intervalometer Built-in|
|Fill Flash||Built-in Flash|
|Storage Medium||SDXC cards|
|Second Storage Option||Single card slot|
|UHS card support||UHS-I|
|External Flash||no Hotshoe|
|USB Connector||USB 2.0|
|HDMI Port||micro HDMI|
|Wifi Support||Wifi built-in|
|Near-Field Communication||NFC built-in|
|Battery Type||EN-EL24 power pack|
|Battery Life (CIPA)||250 shots per charge|
98 x 60 x 32 mm
(3.9 x 2.4 x 1.3 in)
|Camera Weight||231 g (8.1 oz)|
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