Updated (August 2012): Compare the Nikon 1 J1 vs Sony NEX-5R

Sony NEX-5N vs Nikon 1 J1

Winner
Sony NEX-5N

72

Nikon 1 J1

44

Runner-up

Reasons to buy the Sony NEX-5N

Great image quality
Overall image quality
77.0
Great color depth
Color depth
23.6 bits
Wide dynamic range
Dynamic range
12.7 EV
Touch screen
Touch screen
Fewer buttons
 

Reasons to buy the Nikon 1 J1

High-speed framerate
High speed movies
1,200 fps
Continuous shooting
Rapid fire
60 fps
Startup delay
Almost no delay when powering up
1400 ms startup delay
Badge
Phase detection video autofocus
fast and accurate

Items often bought with the Sony NEX-5N or Nikon J1

galleries

Explore our gallery of 46 sample photos taken by the Nikon 1 J1.
Explore our gallery of 50 sample photos taken by the Sony NEX-5N.

differences

Advantages of the Nikon J1

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High-speed framerate
Records high-speed movies
1,200 fps vs None
Help
Capture events too fast for the naked eye and play them back in super-slow motion
Autofocus
Faster video autofocus
Phase detection vs Contrast detection
Help
Shoot videos without worrying about focus
Continuous shooting
Shoots much faster
60 fps vs 10 fps
Help
6x faster continuous shooting
Autofocus
Faster autofocus
Phase detection vs Contrast detection
Help
Catch candid moments easily
Shutter lag
Significantly less shutter lag
94 ms vs 235 ms
Help
2.5x less delay when taking photos
Focus points
Significantly more focus points
135 vs 25
Help
Set focus accurately within the frame
Startup delay
Less startup delay
1400 ms vs 1900 ms
Help
Around 30% less delay when turning on
Fastest shutter speed
Much faster max shutter speed
1/16000s vs 1/4000s
Help
4x faster max shutter speed
Built-in flash
Built-in flash
Yes vs No
Help
A built-in flash is useful for taking indoor shots where there is little light
Thickness
Thinner
1.2" vs 1.5"
Help
More than 20% thinner
Size
Slightly smaller
106×61×30 mm vs 111×59×38 mm
Help
More than 20% smaller
Nikon 1 J1 Learn more about
the Nikon J1

Advantages of the Sony NEX-5N

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Overall image quality
Significantly better image quality
77.0 vs 56.0
Help
Around 40% better image quality
Screen resolution
Significantly higher resolution screen
920k dots vs 460k dots
Help
2x higher resolution screen
Dynamic range
More dynamic range
12.7 EV vs 11 EV
Help
2.3 f-stops more dynamic range
3D
Takes 3D photos
Yes vs No
Help
Combines multiple photos into a 3D image
Low light performance
Lower noise at high ISO
1,079 ISO vs 372 ISO
Help
The NEX-5N has excellent image quality: 1.5 f-stops higher ISO than the J1
Color depth
Better color depth
23.6 bits vs 21.5 bits
Help
Distinguishes 2.1 more bits of color
HDR
Has in-camera HDR
Yes vs No
Help
Combines multiple exposures to capture high dynamic range
Panorama
Can create panoramas in-camera
Yes vs No
Help
Stitches together multiple photos for a wide perspective
Supports 24p
Supports 24p
Yes vs No
Help
Get that real film feel
Screen flips out
Has a flip-out screen
Yes vs No
Help
Flip-out screens can be helpful when composing tricky shots or taking movies
Touch screen
Has a touch screen
Yes vs No
Help
Fewer buttons to worry about and direct interaction with camera menus
Battery life
Significantly longer battery life
460 shots vs 230 shots
Help
2x more shots per battery charge
Lens availability
More lenses available
62 lenses vs 20 lenses
Help
More than 3x more lenses available
True resolution
Higher true resolution
16 MP vs 10 MP
Help
Capture around 60% more detail in your photos
Sensor cleaning
Has a self cleaning sensor
Yes vs No
Help
Removes dust from the sensor automatically, avoiding spots in photos
External flash
Supports an external flash
Yes vs No
Help
An external flash often produces better looking flash images
Light sensitivity
Better maximum light sensitivity
25,600 ISO vs 3,200 ISO
Help
The NEX-5N's maximum light sensitivity is 6 f-stops better
Sony NEX-5N Learn more about
the Sony NEX-5N
vs

recommendations

Which camera do we recommend? Relative to the best recent mirrorless cameras, and ignoring price

Snapsort Recommends
Nikon 1 J1 Nikon 1 J1 44
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    Style
      Color
        You save
        vs
        72 Sony NEX-5N Sony NEX-5N
        Retailer
          Style
            Color
              You save

              similarities

              Compared to recent mirrorless cameras

              Common Strengths
              Movie continuous focus Focus continuously recording movies Help
              Makes it easy to get in-focus movies
              Size Fairly small Help
              J1106×61×30 mm
              NEX-5N111×59×38 mm
              Weight Light weight Help
              J1277 g
              NEX-5N269 g
              Thickness Thin Help
              J11.2"
              NEX-5N1.5"
              Lowest price Inexpensive Help
              J1$263.50
              NEX-5N$399.00
              Common Weaknesses
              Longest exposure Short max exposure time Help
              30 seconds
              External mic jack Neither has an external mic jack Help
              Limited to the in-camera mic
              Viewfinder No viewfinders Help
              Can only preview photos on the screen
              Weather sealed Neither is weather sealed Help
              Need to shelter it from weather
              True resolution Capture low resolution images Help
              J110 MP
              NEX-5N16 MP
              Image stabilization No image stabilization Help
              Risk of blur

              dxomark

              DXOMark

              competitors

              Shared Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Sony Alpha A6000

              Sony Alpha A6000

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $548 body only

              $698 with 16-50mm lens

              Viewfinder Has a viewfinder
              Image stabilization Has image stabilization
              Fastest shutter speed Has a slower max shutter speed
              Thickness Is thicker
              Sony Alpha A5000

              Sony Alpha A5000

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $279 body only

              $350 - $448 with 16-50mm lens

              True resolution Takes slightly higher resolution photos
              Fastest shutter speed Has a slower max shutter speed
              Sony Alpha NEX-5

              Sony Alpha NEX-5

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $360 body only

              $481 with 16-50mm lens

              Startup delay Has slightly less startup delay
              Fastest shutter speed Has a slower max shutter speed
              Thickness Is thicker
              Sony Cybershot DSC-RX100

              Sony Cybershot DSC-RX100

              Pro digicam

              $448

              Screen resolution Has a significantly higher resolution screen
              Image stabilization Has image stabilization
              Fastest shutter speed Has a slower max shutter speed
              Interchangeable lenses Has a built-in lens
              Nikon D3300

              Nikon D3300

              Entry-level DSLR

              $439 - $497 with 18-55mm lens

              Viewfinder Has a viewfinder
              True resolution Takes slightly higher resolution photos
              Fastest shutter speed Has a slower max shutter speed
              Thickness Is thicker
              Canon EOS M

              Canon EOS M

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $290 body only

              $381 with 18-55mm lens

              Screen resolution Has a slightly higher resolution screen
              External mic jack Has an external mic jack
              Fastest shutter speed Has a slower max shutter speed
              Shutter lag Has much more shutter lag
              Nikon D3200

              Nikon D3200

              Entry-level DSLR

              $289 body only

              $349 - $447 with 18-55mm lens

              Viewfinder Has a viewfinder
              True resolution Takes slightly higher resolution photos
              Fastest shutter speed Has a slower max shutter speed
              Thickness Is thicker

              Nikon 1 J1 Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Nikon 1 J5

              Nikon 1 J5

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $497 with 10-30mm lens

              Screen resolution Much higher resolution screen
              Dynamic range More dynamic range
              Lowest price Slightly more expensive
              Thickness Slightly thicker
              Nikon 1 J4

              Nikon 1 J4

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $270 with 10-30mm lens

              Screen resolution Much higher resolution screen
              HDR Has in-camera HDR
              Autofocus Slower video autofocus
              Color depth Worse color depth
              Nikon 1 V1

              Nikon 1 V1

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $585 body only

              $450 with 10-30mm lens

              Screen resolution Significantly higher resolution screen
              Viewfinder Has a viewfinder
              Autofocus Slower autofocus
              Color depth Worse color depth
              Nikon 1 J3

              Nikon 1 J3

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $299 with 10-30mm lens

              Screen resolution Significantly higher resolution screen
              Panorama Can create panoramas in-camera
              Color depth Worse color depth
              Overall image quality Worse image quality
              Nikon 1 S1

              Nikon 1 S1

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $149 with 11-2mm lens

              Dynamic range More dynamic range
              Weight Slightly lighter
              Color depth Worse color depth

              Sony NEX-5N Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Sony NEX-5R

              Sony NEX-5R

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $341 body only

              $898 with 16mm lens

              Focus points More focus points
              Dynamic range More dynamic range
              Battery life Shorter battery life
              Low light performance Slightly more noise at high ISO
              Sony NEX-5T

              Sony NEX-5T

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $349 body only

              $640 with 16-50mm lens

              Focus points More focus points
              Dynamic range More dynamic range
              3D Doesn't take 3D photos
              Battery life Shorter battery life
              Sony Alpha NEX-3N

              Sony Alpha NEX-3N

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $420 with 16-50mm lens

              Built-in flash Built-in flash
              Battery life Slightly longer battery life
              Screen resolution Significantly lower resolution screen
              Touch screen No touch screen
              Sony Alpha A5100

              Sony Alpha A5100

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $448 body only

              $598 with 16-50mm lens

              Autofocus Faster autofocus
              Focus points Significantly more focus points
              3D Doesn't take 3D photos
              Sensor cleaning Lacks a self cleaning sensor

              appearance

              Nikon 1 J1 Sony NEX-5N
              Nikon 1 J1 Sony NEX-5N
              Nikon 1 J1 Sony NEX-5N

              discussion

              Nikon 1 J1
              1 J1
              Nikon

              Report a correction
              Sony NEX-5N
              NEX-5N
              Sony

              Report a correction

              Showing 2 comments

              Hnguy47 (5:50 PM, January 07, 2012)
              I have an eight month old little girl. I have no experience in photography but would like to capture all of those candid moments with and of her. I noticed that the comparisons reported that the Nikon was quicker at snapping pictures than the Sony but the Sony was better with the quality of photos. I was wondering if the difference of the speed between the two outweighed the quality comparisons of the results. Any advice would be helpful!! Thanks in advance.
               
              Avatar for SKATE4FREE SKATE4FREE (4:13 PM, January 01, 2012)
              for video which is best?