Specialist Consultant Collectors, Science & Marine
Instruments of Science & Technology / A RARE NIKON 1 CAMERA, JAPAN, 1948-1949,
£10,000 - £12,000
As the inaugural camera produced by Nikon, the Nikon 1 is an important part of the history of camera manufacturing. It was first announced in the October 1947 issue of Kouga Monthly, five months before its official release, simply named the 'Nikon Camera'. The model was later renamed the Nikon 1 to distinguish it from future iterations. The Nikon 1 received orders from across the globe, including exports to Hong Kong, Singapore, Europe, and the United States.
According to Peter Braczko's Nikon Pocket Book (1996), the Nikon 1 had a limited production window of March 1948 to April 1949, with only a few hundred examples ever actually making it to market. The reason for its discontinuation and rarity was that the American slide cutting machines used the existing Leica format of 24 x 36mm, whereas the Nikon format was 24 x 32mm. In 2016, a Nikon 1 camera sold in Europe for 384,000 Euros, a record for any Nikon camera.
Further details on the history and design of the Nikon 1 can be found at: