It would have been very interesting to be a ‘fly on the wall’ in Nikon’s boardroom as the executive committee discussed their product marketing strategy, including the recent demise of the DL product line. From a strategic marketing perspective the DL cancellation could lead to Nikon 1 enhancement in terms of lens availability.
Nikon has already incurred all of the development costs for three different lenses planned to be used in the DL product line:
6.7-18.5mm f/1.8-2.8 (efov 18-50mm),
8.8-31.3mm f/1.8-2.8 (efov 24-85mm), and
8.8-185mm f/2.8-5.6 (efov 24-500mm).
These three lenses are designed to work with a CX-sized sensor. Since many Nikon 1 owners have wanted faster zoom lenses since the introduction of the system it would make strategic sense for Nikon to transition at least the 6.7-18.5mm and 8.8-31.3mm over to the Nikon 1 lens family in the very near term. This would enhance the low light capability of the Nikon 1 system and give many users the faster lenses they desire.
The 8.8-185mm could also potentially find its way into the Nikon 1 lens lineup if Nikon sees this lens as an ‘all-in-one’ zoom lens solution, especially as a travel lens, or to compete with bridge cameras from Sony and Panasonic that offer similar zoom ranges. Consumers buying a potential 1 Nikon 8.8-185mm zoom would get a very flexible zoom lens, plus the added benefit of using an interchangeable lens body. This would provide them with even more future functionality rather than being limited to a fixed lens bridge camera.
Obviously Nikon would need to do some work to adapt DL lenses to work with a Nikon 1 CX mount. For all any of us know Nikon could already have in-body and CX mount versions of the lenses included in their patents. I suppose the worst case scenario is that the design of a DL lens cannot be used in any way for a Nikon 1 camera. At least Nikon would have statistics on the advanced orders for DL cameras and could use that to determine which fast zoom lenses would be priorities for the Nikon 1 system.
Interesting times may be ahead…
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