Nikon W150 vs Pentax MX-1
The Nikon Coolpix W150 and the Pentax MX-1 are two digital cameras that were officially introduced, respectively, in April 2019 and January 2013. Both the W150 and the MX-1 are fixed lens compact cameras that are based on a 1/3.1-inch (W150) and a 1/1.7-inch (MX-1) sensor. The Nikon has a resolution of 13 megapixels, whereas the Pentax provides 12 MP.
Below is an overview of the main specs of the two cameras as a starting point for the comparison.
Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Nikon Coolpix W150 and the Pentax MX-1? Which one should you buy? Read on to find out how these two cameras compare with respect to their body size, their imaging sensors, their shooting features, their input-output connections, and their reception by expert reviewers.
An illustration of the physical size and weight of the Nikon W150 and the Pentax MX-1 is provided in the side-by-side display below. The two cameras are presented according to their relative size. Three consecutive views from the front, the top, and the rear side are shown. All width, height and depth dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter.
The W150 can be obtained in five different colors (blue, orange, white, flower, resort), while the MX-1 is only available in black.
If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Nikon W150 and the Pentax MX-1 are of equal size. However, the MX-1 is substantially heavier (121 percent) than the W150. It is worth mentioning in this context that the W150 is splash and dust resistant, while the MX-1 does not feature any corresponding weather-sealing. More than that, the W150 is water-proof up to 10m and can, thus, be used for underwater photography.
The power pack in the W150 can be charged via the USB port, so that it is not always necessary to take the battery charger along when travelling.
The adjacent table lists the principal physical characteristics of the two cameras alongside a wider set of alternatives. If you would like to visualize and compare a different camera combination, you can navigate to the CAM-parator app and make your selection from a broad list of cameras there.
|1.||Nikon W150||110 mm||67 mm||38 mm||177 g||220||Y||Apr 2019||159|
|2.||Pentax MX-1||122 mm||61 mm||51 mm||391 g||290||n||Jan 2013||499|
|3.||Canon G16||109 mm||76 mm||40 mm||356 g||360||n||Aug 2013||549|
|4.||Canon G15||107 mm||76 mm||40 mm||352 g||350||n||Sep 2012||499|
|5.||Leica Q2||130 mm||80 mm||92 mm||718 g||370||Y||Mar 2019||4,995|
|6.||Nikon B600||122 mm||82 mm||99 mm||500 g||280||n||Jan 2019||349|
|7.||Nikon A1000||114 mm||72 mm||41 mm||330 g||250||n||Jan 2019||429|
|8.||Nikon P1000||146 mm||119 mm||181 mm||1415 g||250||n||Jul 2018||999|
|9.||Nikon W300||112 mm||66 mm||29 mm||231 g||280||Y||May 2017||389|
|10.||Nikon P7800||119 mm||78 mm||50 mm||399 g||350||n||Sep 2013||549|
|11.||Olympus XZ-2||113 mm||65 mm||48 mm||346 g||340||n||Sep 2012||599|
|12.||Panasonic TS7||117 mm||76 mm||37 mm||319 g||300||Y||May 2018||449|
|13.||Panasonic LF1||103 mm||62 mm||28 mm||192 g||250||n||Apr 2013||499|
|14.||Ricoh WG-6||118 mm||66 mm||33 mm||246 g||340||Y||Feb 2019||399|
|15.||Ricoh WG-60||123 mm||62 mm||30 mm||193 g||300||Y||Oct 2018||279|
|16.||Sony RX0 II||59 mm||41 mm||35 mm||132 g||240||Y||Mar 2019||699|
|17.||Sony RX0||59 mm||41 mm||30 mm||110 g||240||Y||Aug 2017||699|
|Notes: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as add-on or interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.|
Any camera decision will naturally be influenced heavily by the price. The manufacturer’s suggested retail prices give an idea on the placement of the camera in the maker’s lineup and the broader market. The W150 was launched at a markedly lower price (by 68 percent) than the MX-1, which puts it into a different market segment. 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.
The imaging sensor is at the core of digital cameras and its size is one of the main determining factors of image quality. A large sensor will tend to have larger individual pixels that provide better low-light sensitivity, wider dynamic range, and richer color-depth than smaller pixel-units in a sensor of the same technological generation. Moreover, a large sensor camera will give the photographer more control over depth-of-field in the image and, thus, the ability to better isolate a subject from the background. On the downside, larger sensors tend to be associated with larger, more expensive camera bodies and lenses.
Of the two cameras under consideration, the Nikon W150 features a 1/3.1-inch sensor and the Pentax MX-1 a 1/1.7-inch sensor. The sensor area in the MX-1 is 169 percent bigger. As a result of these sensor size differences, the cameras have a format factor of, respectively, 7.4 and 4.5. Both cameras feature a native aspect ratio (sensor width to sensor height) of 4:3.
Despite having a smaller sensor, the Nikon W150 offers a higher resolution of 13 megapixels, compared with 12 MP of the Pentax MX-1. This megapixels advantage comes at the cost of a higher pixel density and a smaller size of the individual pixel (with a pixel pitch of 1.11μm versus 1.89μm for the MX-1). However, it should be noted that the W150 is much more recent (by 6 years and 3 months) than the MX-1, and its sensor will have benefitted from technological advances during this time that make it possible to gather light more efficiently. Coming back to sensor resolution, it should be mentioned that the W150 has no anti-alias filter installed, so that it can capture all the detail its sensor resolves.
The Nikon Coolpix W150 has a native sensitivity range from ISO 125 to ISO 1600. The corresponding ISO settings for the Pentax MX-1 are ISO 100 to ISO 12800 (no boost).
Consistent information on actual sensor performance is available from DXO Mark for many cameras. This service determines an overall sensor rating, as well as sub-scores for low-light sensitivity ("DXO Sports"), dynamic range ("DXO Landscape"), and color depth ("DXO Portrait"). The table below summarizes the physical sensor characteristics and sensor quality findings and compares them across a set of similar cameras.
| DXO |
|5.||Leica Q2||Full Frame||46.7||8368||5584||4K/30p||26.4||13.5||2491||96|
|16.||Sony RX0 II||1-inch||15.4||4800||3200||4K/30p||..||..||..||..|
Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but also of capturing video footage. Both cameras under consideration are equipped with sensors that have a sufficiently high read-out speed for moving images, and both provide the same movie specifications (1080/30p).
Beyond body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. The W150 and the MX-1 are similar in the sense that neither of the two has a viewfinder. The images are, thus, framed using live view on the rear LCD. The following table reports on some other key feature differences and similarities of the Nikon W150, the Pentax MX-1, and comparable cameras.
|16.||Sony RX0 II||none||n||1.5||230||tilting||n||..||5.5||n||n|
The reported shutter speed information refers to the use of the mechanical shutter. Yet, some cameras only have an electronic shutter, while others have an electronic shutter in addition to a mechanical one. In fact, the W150 is one of those camera that have an additional electronic shutter, which makes completely silent shooting possible. However, this mode is less suitable for photographing moving objects (risk of rolling shutter) or shooting under artificial light sources (risk of flickering).
Both the W150 and the MX-1 have zoom lenses built in. The W150 has a 30-90mm f/3.3-5.9 optic and the MX-1 offers a 28-112mm f/1.8-2.5 (focal lengths in full frame equivalent terms). Hence, the Pentax provides a wider angle of view at the short end, as well as more tele-photo reach at the long end than the Nikon. The MX-1 offers the faster maximum aperture.
Concerning the storage of imaging data, both the W150 and the MX-1 write their files to SDXC cards.
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 Coolpix W150 and Pentax MX-1 and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.
| WiFi |
| NFC |
|16.||Sony RX0 II||-||stereo||mono||Y||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||Y|
It is notable that the W150 offers wifi support, while the MX-1 does not. Wifi can be a very convenient means to transfer image data to an off-camera location.
The W150 is a recent model that features in the current product line-up of Nikon. In contrast, the MX-1 has been discontinued (but can be found pre-owned on eBay). There has not been a direct replacement model for the MX-1 from Pentax. Further information on the two cameras (e.g. user guides, manuals), as well as related accessories, can be found on the official Nikon and Pentax websites.
So what is the bottom line? Is there a clear favorite between the Nikon W150 and the Pentax MX-1? Which camera is better? A synthesis of the relative strong points of each of the models is listed below.
Arguments in favor of the Nikon Coolpix W150:
- Maximized detail: Lacks an anti-alias filter to exploit the sensor's full resolution potential.
- Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (4.7 vs 1 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
- Less disturbing: Has an electronic shutter option for completely silent shooting.
- Less heavy: Is lighter (by 214g or 55 percent) and hence easier to carry around.
- Easier travel charging: Can be conveniently charged via its USB port.
- Better sealing: Is weather sealed to enable shooting in dusty or wet environments.
- Water-proof: Is rugged and sealed and can thus be used for underwater photography (up to 10m).
- Easier file upload: Has wifi built in for automatic backup or image transfer to the web.
- Easier wireless transfer: Supports Bluetooth for image sharing without cables.
- More affordable: Was introduced into a lower priced category (68 percent cheaper at launch).
- More modern: Reflects 6 years and 3 months of technical progress since the MX-1 launch.
Reasons to prefer the Pentax MX-1:
- Better moiré control: Has an anti-alias filter to avoid artificial patterns to appear in images.
- Better image quality: Features bigger pixels on a larger sensor for higher quality imaging.
- Richer colors: The pixel size advantage translates into images with better, more accurate colors.
- More dynamic range: Larger pixels capture a wider spectrum of light and dark details.
- Better low-light sensitivity: Larger pixels means good image quality even under poor lighting.
- Larger screen: Has a bigger rear LCD (3.0" vs 2.7") for image review and settings control.
- More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (920k vs 230k dots).
- More flexible LCD: Has a tilting screen for odd-angle shots in landscape orientation.
- Faster shutter: Has higher mechanical shutter speed (1/8000s vs 1/2000s) to freeze action.
- Better light gathering: Has a lens with a wider maximum aperture (f/1.8 vs f/3.3).
- Wider view: Has a wider-angle lens that facilitates landscape or interior shots.
- More tele-reach: Has a longer tele-lens for perspective compression and subject magnification.
- Longer lasting: Gets more shots (290 versus 220) out of a single battery charge.
- Sharper images: Has stabilization technology built-in to reduce the impact of hand-shake.
- More heavily discounted: Has been around for much longer (launched in January 2013).
If the number of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the MX-1 is the clear winner of the contest (15 : 11 points). However, the relative importance of the various individual camera aspects will vary according to personal preferences and needs, so that you might like to apply corresponding weights to the particular features before making a decision on a new camera. A professional sports photographer will view the differences between cameras in a way that diverges from the perspective of a street photog, and a person interested in family portraits has distinct needs from a landscape shooter. Hence, the decision which camera is best and worth buying is often a very personal one.
How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Nikon W150 and the Pentax MX-1 place the cameras among the top in their class? Find out in the latest Best Travel-Zoom Camera listing whether the two cameras rank among the cream of the crop.
In any case, while the comparison of the spec-sheets of cameras can offer a general idea of their imaging potential, it remains partial and cannot reveal, for example, the shooting experience and imaging performance when actually working with the W150 or the MX-1. User reviews that are available, for instance, at amazon can sometimes shed light on these issues, but such feedback is all too often partial, inconsistent, and inaccurate.
This is why hands-on reviews by experts are important. The following table reports the overall ratings of the cameras as published by some of the major camera review sites (amateurphotographer [AP], cameralabs [CL], dpreview [DPR], ephotozine [EPZ], photographyblog [PB]). As can be seen, the professional reviewers agree in many cases on the quality of different cameras, but sometimes their assessments diverge, reinforcing the earlier point that a camera decision is often a very personal choice.
|1.||Nikon W150||..||+||..||3.5/5||3/5||Apr 2019||159|
|2.||Pentax MX-1||3/5||..||74/100||4/5||4/5||Jan 2013||499|
|3.||Canon G16||4/5||+||..||4.5/5||4.5/5||Aug 2013||549|
|4.||Canon G15||4/5||+||76/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||Sep 2012||499|
|5.||Leica Q2||..||..||84/100||4.5/5||4/5||Mar 2019||4,995|
|6.||Nikon B600||..||+||..||3.5/5||3/5||Jan 2019||349|
|7.||Nikon A1000||..||+ +||..||3.5/5||3/5||Jan 2019||429|
|8.||Nikon P1000||..||+||73/100||3.5/5||3.5/5||Jul 2018||999|
|9.||Nikon W300||..||+||..||4/5||4/5||May 2017||389|
|10.||Nikon P7800||3/5||..||..||4/5||4.5/5||Sep 2013||549|
|11.||Olympus XZ-2||4/5||+||..||4.5/5||4.5/5||Sep 2012||599|
|12.||Panasonic TS7||..||+||..||..||3.5/5||May 2018||449|
|13.||Panasonic LF1||3/5||+||..||4/5||4.5/5||Apr 2013||499|
|14.||Ricoh WG-6||..||..||..||3.5/5||3.5/5||Feb 2019||399|
|15.||Ricoh WG-60||..||..||..||..||..||Oct 2018||279|
|16.||Sony RX0 II||..||..||..||3.5/5||4/5||Mar 2019||699|
|17.||Sony RX0||..||..||..||3.5/5||4/5||Aug 2017||699|
|Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (..) not available.|
The above review scores should be interpreted with care, though. The assessments were made in relation to similar cameras of the same technological generation. Hence, a score should always be seen in the context of the camera's market launch date and its price, and rating-comparisons among cameras that span long time periods or concern very differently equipped models make little sense. It should also be noted that some of the review sites have over time altered the way they render their verdicts.
Other camera comparisons
Did this review help to inform your camera decision process? If you would like to see a different side-by-side camera review, just make a corresponding selection in the search boxes below. Alternatively, you can follow any of the listed hyperlinks for comparisons that others found interesting.
Specifications: Nikon W150 vs Pentax MX-1
Below is a side-by-side comparison of the specs of the two cameras to facilitate a quick review of their differences and common features.
|Camera Model||Nikon W150||Pentax MX-1|
|Camera Type||Fixed lens compact camera||Fixed lens compact camera|
|Camera Lens||30-90mm f/3.3-5.9||28-112mm f/1.8-2.5|
|Launch Date||April 2019||January 2013|
|Launch Price||USD 159||USD 499|
|Sensor Specs||Nikon W150||Pentax MX-1|
|Sensor Format||1/3.1" Sensor||1/1.7" Sensor|
|Sensor Size||4.7 x 3.5 mm||7.6 x 5.7 mm|
|Sensor Area||16.45 mm2||43.32 mm2|
|Sensor Diagonal||5.9 mm||9.5 mm|
|Sensor Resolution||13 Megapixels||12 Megapixels|
|Image Resolution||4160 x 3120 pixels||4000 x 3000 pixels|
|Pixel Pitch||1.11 μm||1.89 μm|
|Pixel Density||78.90 MP/cm2||27.70 MP/cm2|
|Moiré control||no AA filter||Anti-Alias filter|
|Movie Capability||1080/30p Video||1080/30p Video|
|ISO Setting||125 - 1,600 ISO||100 - 12,800 ISO|
|DXO Sensor Quality (score)||..||49|
|DXO Color Depth (bits)||..||20.4|
|DXO Dynamic Range (EV)||..||11.3|
|DXO Low Light (ISO)||..||208|
|Screen Specs||Nikon W150||Pentax MX-1|
|Viewfinder Type||no viewfinder||no viewfinder|
|LCD Framing||Live View||Live View|
|Rear LCD Size||2.7inch||3.0inch|
|LCD Resolution||230k dots||920k dots|
|LCD Attachment||Fixed screen||Tilting screen|
|Shooting Specs||Nikon W150||Pentax MX-1|
|Focus System||Contrast-detect AF||Contrast-detect AF|
|Continuous Shooting||4.7 shutter flaps/s||1 shutter flaps/s|
|Electronic Shutter||up to 1/2000s||no E-Shutter|
|Image Stabilization||no shake reduction||In-body stabilization|
|Fill Flash||Built-in Flash||Built-in Flash|
|Storage Medium||SDXC cards||SDXC cards|
|Second Storage Option||Single card slot||Single card slot|
|UHS card support||no||no|
|Connectivity Specs||Nikon W150||Pentax MX-1|
|External Flash||no Hotshoe||no Hotshoe|
|USB Connector||USB 2.0||USB 2.0|
|HDMI Port||micro HDMI||mini HDMI|
|Wifi Support||Wifi built-in||no Wifi|
|Bluetooth Support||Bluetooth built-in||no Bluetooth|
|Body Specs||Nikon W150||Pentax MX-1|
|Environmental Sealing||Waterproof body (10m)||not weather sealed|
|Battery Life (CIPA)||220 shots per charge||290 shots per charge|
|In-Camera Charging||USB charging||no USB charging|
110 x 67 x 38 mm
(4.3 x 2.6 x 1.5 in)
122 x 61 x 51 mm
(4.8 x 2.4 x 2.0 in)
|Camera Weight||177 g (6.2 oz)||391 g (13.8 oz)|
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