After numerous delays, Nikon cancels its DL series of premium compact cameras


posted Monday, February 13, 2017 at 9:50 AM EST


The Nikon DL 18-50, DL 24-85 and DL 24-500 premium compact cameras were announced nearly one year ago and were scheduled for a June 2016 release. However, following the Japanese camera company finding numerous issues with the camera’s image processing hardware, the cameras were delayed indefinitely.

There were rumblings that the cameras would release at different points, including recent rumors pointing toward a January or March 2017 release, but the lack of DL news at CES was notable. Rather than wait until CP+ later this month to come and go without any sign of the DL cameras, Nikon has officially canceled the trio.

Of the cancellation, Nikon says, “…everyone involved has worked very hard to develop products with which our customers will be satisfied. However, it has been decided that sales of the DL series will be canceled due to concerns regarding their profitability considering the increase in development costs, and the drop in the number of expected sales due to the slow-down of the market.”

Nikon DL 24-85

While this is speculation on my part, it must be the case that the cameras were far from being ready for release because the only way to recoup any of the extensive DL development costs is to release and sell a product. However, facing continued high costs without imminent release, killing the DL cameras would minimize the losses.

There is no indication that the series might be revived later in different forms as Nikon only offers an apology at the end of their announcement. To read the full announcement, see here.

Nikon DL 24-500

I’m sure that many photographers are disappointed with this announcement, as the DL cameras showed a lot of promise. It is unusual for a camera to be cancelled after announcement, let alone three of them, but 2016 was not a typical year in the camera industry.

Update on February 13 at 10:30 AM EST: For photographers interested in camera industry financials, Nikon also released financial information today. You can read the financial results for the third quarter here. Further, Nikon has published a "Notice of Recognition of Extraordinary Loss" for the period of April 1 through December 31, 2016. The loss in question amounts to over US$260 million based on exchange rates at the time of writing. 

(Seen via Nikon Rumors)