Explore the World with the Rugged Nikon 1 AW1 Camera

The Nikon 1 AW1 is a highly durable and waterproof camera that is designed for adventurous photographers who love to capture moments in extreme environments. This camera is perfect for those who enjoy outdoor activities like snorkeling, skiing, and hiking. With its rugged exterior and advanced features, the Nikon 1 AW1 can help you to capture stunning photos and videos, no matter where your adventures take you.

Written by Victor Chan | Updated: Mon May 01 2023

Nikon 1 AW1 article cover photo

Key Features

Sep 19 2013


14 megapixels


Sensor Type1-inch

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Overview of the 1 AW1

Are you an adventurous photographer looking for a camera that can keep up with your active lifestyle? If so, you need the Nikon 1 AW1 in your life. This camera is designed to withstand extreme environments and capture stunning photos and videos along the way. Whether you're skiing down a mountain or snorkeling in the ocean, the Nikon 1 AW1 has got you covered. It's waterproof and shockproof, meaning you don't have to worry about damaging it or missing out on capturing those once-in-a-lifetime moments. In this blog post, we'll explore the features and benefits of the Nikon 1 AW1 and why it's a must-have for any adventurous photographer.

Nikon 1 AW1 Pros and Cons

Now, we will look more closely at our review of the Nikon 1 AW1 camera. We will see what it can do and compare it to other cameras like it. We will tell you what's good about it and what's not so good. This way, you'll know if it's the camera for you!


Waterproof (rank well: waterproof camera)
Shockproof (rank well: durable camera)
Interchangeable lenses (rank well: interchangeable lens camera)
Good image quality (rank well: high resolution camera)
Fast autofocus (rank well: fast autofocus camera)
Compact size (rank well: compact camera)
Built-in Wi-Fi (rank well: camera with Wi-Fi)


Small sensor size (rank well: small sensor camera)
Limited lens selection (rank well: limited lens options)
No viewfinder (rank well: camera without viewfinder)
Expensive compared to other mirrorless cameras (rank well: expensive camera)
Low battery life (rank well: camera with short battery life)
No manual exposure control (rank well: camera without manual controls)

Build and Construction

Body and dimensions

Nikon 1 AW1

Weather sealed
Dimensions114 x 72 x 37mm

Weather Sealing

The Nikon 1 AW1 camera is equipped with environmental seals that make it resistant to weather, preventing water and dust from entering the camera. If you enjoy outdoor photography and need a camera that can handle extreme conditions, the 1 AW1 is an excellent choice.

Design and Handling

Main design features

View FinderNone
Screen TypeFixed Type
Screen Resolution921k dots
Body typeRangefinder-style mirrorless

Suitable for:

PhotographyAbove Avg.
VideographyAbove Avg.
TravelAbove Avg.

LCD Screen

This camera has a fixed type 3.00" screen, with a display resolution of 921k dots. This makes the Nikon 1 AW1 not as suitable for those looking for a vlogging camera as you cannot view yourself while shooting selfies easily. Unfortunately, the camera does not have a touch screen, which may make it less user-friendly.


Nikon 1 AW1 does not include a viewfinder. The lack of a viewfinder on the 1 AW1 camera may make it less suitable for outdoor photography in bright conditions.

Image Quality

Nikon 1 AW1 has a 14MP sized CMOS sensor. You can shoot at maximum resolution of 14 pixels. Nikon 1 AW1 has a native ISO range of 160 - 6400 which can be boosted to null - null. It can also save files in RAW format which gives you a wider room for post processing.

Key Features

Sep 19 2013


160 - 6400

ISO Range

Extended ISOnull - null
Max resolution4608 x 3072 pixels

DXO Sensor Scores


51 / 102

Color Depth

20.2 / 26.5

Dynamic Range

10.9 / 14.8

Low Light ISO

428 / 4505

DXO mark sensor scores

The DXOmark rankings indicate that the Nikon 1 AW1 camera has average color depth performance, which refers to the number of colors the sensor can distinguish. Additionally, its dynamic range is also average, allowing it to retain low amounts of details in both bright and dark areas of a scene. The camera's low light ISO performance is poor, which is an important factor to consider if you plan to use it in dimly lit indoor environments or at night. Overall the image quality of the 1 AW1 is below average

Crop Factor

Camera crop factor (or focal length multiplier) refers to how a camera's sensor size affects the apparent field of view of a lens. Crop factor is determined by comparing the size of a camera's sensor to that of a full-frame sensor, which is a standard reference size for camera sensors.

Size comparison

Medium FormatFull FrameAPS-C (Sony, Nikon)

Crop factor calculator

Crop factor


Full frame equivalent


This camera: 1-inch



Connectivity, storage, battery

StorageSD/SDHC/SDXC card
Battery Life220 shots
Battery ModelEN-EL20
Wireless Connectivity


The Nikon 1 AW1 supports SD/SDHC/SDXC card with 1 slots for storage. This may suffice for everyday use. However, for professional applications such as wedding photography, it is not recommended as a memory card malfunction could lead to the loss of all footage.


The Nikon 1 AW1 uses the EN-EL20 model of battery pack. This is rated for 220 shots shots which is high. If you intend to take photos or record videos for an extended period, it might be a good idea to bring along additional batteries.

Photography Features


The Nikon 1 AW1 has built in flash which is great for event photography and in low light situations. However it lacks an external flash shoe, which limits you to using the built-in flash.


The Nikon 1 AW1 boasts a maximum mechanical shutter speed of 1/4000s, which is ideal for shooting fast-moving subjects in bright environments, such as in sports photography. Faster shutter speeds enable you to freeze the action and capture every detail, making it easier to get the perfect shot.

With a continuous mechanical shutter speed of n/a or an electronic shutter speed of n/a, this camera is not capable of capturing the perfect moment more easily, making it not as suited for wedding, sports, and wildlife photography. Higher shutter speeds make it easier to capture fast-paced action, ensuring that you never miss the perfect shot.


The Nikon 1 AW1 includes two autofocus (AF) systems: contrast detection and phase detection, with 135 number of focus points.

While contrast detection is generally more accurate and precise, phase detection autofocus is faster and more effective in most situations, particularly when photographing moving subjects.

Phase detection autofocus works by dividing the incoming light into pairs and then analyzing how they intersect on the camera's sensor. This method allows the camera to determine not only if a subject is in focus but also the direction and distance needed to adjust the focus to achieve perfect sharpness.

On the other hand, contrast detection autofocus works by analyzing the contrast of an image and adjusting the focus until the highest contrast is detected. While this method is very accurate, it can be slow, especially in low light conditions or when photographing moving subjects.

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What is the sensor size of the Nikon 1 AW1?

The Nikon 1 AW1 features a CMOS sensor

Is the Nikon 1 AW1 weather sealed?

Yes the 1 AW1 does have weather sealing.

When was the Nikon 1 AW1 announced?

The Nikon 1 AW1 was announced on Sep 19 2013

Does the Nikon 1 AW1 have in-body image stabilization?

No the 1 AW1 does not have in-body image stabilization that can compensate for camera shake, making it easier to shoot handheld in low light conditions.

What is the ISO range of the Nikon 1 AW1?

The 1 AW1 has a native ISO range of 160-6400, which can be expanded to ISO null-null for even greater sensitivity in low light conditions.

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