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Nikon KeyMission 360 UK Review: Nikon quality 4K VR-ready camera

Written by  May 01, 2017

The new KeyMission 360 camera is squarely aimed at, all action, thrill-seeking consumers and is for sale at 25% at Amazon for a limited time.

So what is it all about, well it’s waterproof, shockproof and it comes with two high-resolution cameras on either side, offering everything you need to get involved in the 360 degree virtual-reality revolution.

Anything made by Nikon will always be of a high quality and the Nikon Keymission 360 is no exception. With high quality comes high price, so is it worth the money?

 nikon-keymission-360-camera4

Design

Nikon’s 360-degree camera is surprisingly bulky, with a 65 x 61mm footprint, and it weighs a hefty 196g. It isn’t as portable as, say, Samsung’s refreshed Gear 360 with their moulded handgrips, and if you want to carry it around with you, you’ll probably want to invest in a tripod or gimbal (not supplied).

It's a tough beast and copes very well against the elements, it's waterproof up to a depth of 30m and shockproof against a 2m drop. There’s also a rubber case provided for added protection.

The huge Record button sits on the top edge, along with a battery-level indicator and two status lights that let you know which lens is currently recording. There’s a photo button on one side too, for taking stills.

The other side houses the 1,050mAh removable battery, and a microSD slot, micro-USB port for charging and a micro-HDMI port for displaying your recent footage on an external display. There’s also an airplane mode toggle switch here as well.

It lacks an onboard display, which is a shame, so if you want a proper insight into what you’re shooting, you’ll have to use the companion smartphone app. 

Also see: GoPro Hero 5 UK Review: Size doesn’t matter

Nikon KeyMission app

Apps

The KeyMission 360 doesn’t work with the normal Nikon SnapBridge application. It uses a specific action-camera app – SnapBridge 360/170 – and its disappointing. To begin with, I experienced frequent Bluetooth connection issues on startup, which gets extremely frustrating.

Once I have finally got the two paired, you can delve into camera-specific settings, which are very limited. All you can do is set recording and still image resolutions, and turn on wind noise reduction and that's it!, but it does at least support most Android and iOS devices. 

Picture and video quality

But as you would expect from Nikon its image quality is high, with two 20-megapixel CMOS sensors with f/2.3 lenses, able to record 30fps video at a resolution of 4,096 x 2,160. 

I tested the Nikon Keymission 360 in various locations from the garden to the aquarium and just wherever my legs took me on a journey around the countryside.

The video quality was seriously impresssive. Plenty of rich, vibrant detail was picked up by both lenses and I managed to take some impressive stills as well. Even wind noise reduction, really worked well. The KeyMission 360’s image quality is simply the best we’ve seen from a 360-degree camera.

nikon KeyMission-360-Front

Price and competition

The KeyMission 360 certainly has plenty of competition. The 360-degree camera market has become extremely popular in recent years, with the likes of Kodak, LG and Ricoh all wanting to outdo each other.

The KeyMission’s biggest competitor is probably the Samsung Gear 360 (see review), a dual-camera device that’s popular among Samsung smartphone owners priced at £350.

Nikon’s KeyMission 360, meanwhile, is for sale at Amazon for £319 at the moment, it is normally priced at £419.99, so if you want one as this discounted price don't wait too long. 


Nikon KeyMission 360 Action Camera £319.00 (25% off for now) amazon uk

Nikon KeyMission 360 Review: Verdict

Nikon’s first foray into VR-ready camera market and it stands up well, but isn't particularly outstanding. A lack of detailed manual controls and a limited app are a little frustrating. The normal price is too high: Samsung’s new and improved Gear 360 camera is £210, which makes the Nikon a harder choice to recommend. However, its a tough cookie, easily coping with the elements, the picture and video quality is superb.

Also see:Yi 4K+ UK Review: A superb action camera to give the Go Pro's something to think about

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