I Know Nikon Needs to Boost Sales but This Seems a Bit Much

Mar 23, 2015

Liron Samuels

Liron Samuels is a wildlife and commercial photographer based in Israel. When he isn’t waking up at 4am to take photos of nature, he stays awake until 4am taking photos of the night skies or time lapses. You can see more of his work on his website or follow him on Facebook.

I Know Nikon Needs to Boost Sales but This Seems a Bit Much

Mar 23, 2015

Liron Samuels

Liron Samuels is a wildlife and commercial photographer based in Israel. When he isn’t waking up at 4am to take photos of nature, he stays awake until 4am taking photos of the night skies or time lapses. You can see more of his work on his website or follow him on Facebook.

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A few weeks ago I mentioned Nikon’s latest financial results and its efforts to increase sales and diversify its revenue stream, but the latest product release appears to be somewhat of a desperate move.

No, Nikon didn’t announce the rumored 50MP camera or anything actually useful. The company’s latest release is a stainless steel hot shoe cover, with a big fat price tag for such a little, useless accessory.

I’ll begin with a full disclosure: I rarely use the hot shoe cover on my cameras. Unless I’m shooting somewhere extremely humid, dusty, dirty or sandy, the tiny cover stays packed away in my camera bag. I used to keep it on all the time, but got tired of taking it on and off every time I needed to use my flash.

This isn’t a rant against hot shoe covers in general; in fact I even recommend you use yours, but Nikon’s 2,750 Yen-before-tax (~$23) stainless steel cover seems ridiculous to me.

Sure, it will help protect the hot shoe’s contacts from dust, dirt and moisture or even from getting bent or otherwise damaged. That being said, so will the plastic cover that comes free with every Nikon camera with a hot shoe.

Are you interested in this new stainless steel cover because you lost your original cover? Before ordering the new model (available on eBay for $35), why not get an original replacement for just $2.00?

I can’t think of a single reason why one would require a stainless steel hot shoe cover, and based on the fact that no practical advantage is mentioned on Nikon’s product page, I’m guessing they couldn’t either.

I get it that Nikon wants to make more money and that this is a quick and simple product to manufacture and release. I also know that Nikon likes to attach exaggerated price tags to its accessories (the $616 MB-D12 battery grip comes to mind… “Only” $370 on Amazon, though).

Personally I’d never pay for such a product, but as far as I’m concerned Nikon can go ahead an offer it in two dozen colors and print names on it as well. I’m sure some people will love it and have already ordered one.

I just hope that not too many people waste their money on this and that Nikon will finally realize, or more accurately be shown, that there’s a limit to the nonsensical prices its customers are willing to pay.

When it comes to Nikon’s policy for pricing accessories, the company reminds me of an internet troll. It’s amusing to see every once in a while and makes you wonder how many people out there should be wearing straightjackets, but sometimes it’s just plain and simply annoying.

We all know the only way to get a troll to stop is by not feeding it. So, I won’t say you shouldn’t get this pretty-but-useless hot shoe cover, I just ask that you stop for a moment and ask yourself if you’re sure you want to feed the troll.



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Liron Samuels

Liron Samuels

Liron Samuels is a wildlife and commercial photographer based in Israel. When he isn’t waking up at 4am to take photos of nature, he stays awake until 4am taking photos of the night skies or time lapses. You can see more of his work on his website or follow him on Facebook.

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48 responses to “I Know Nikon Needs to Boost Sales but This Seems a Bit Much”

  1. Art Nau Avatar
    Art Nau

    mmmm shinnnnnyyyy

    1. Rüdiger Trost Avatar
      Rüdiger Trost

      You can get your own personalized thing there!

  2. Joel Smith Avatar
    Joel Smith

    Ha ha this is Nikon for you Tom Kirk

    1. Tom Kirk Avatar
      Tom Kirk

      I want it so bad!!! :'(

  3. Henri Lindenhof Avatar
    Henri Lindenhof

    Who needs a D400? This is what we were waiting for!

  4. Jake Kurdsjuk Avatar
    Jake Kurdsjuk

    Funny how they stopped shipping the plastic ones on the D810 and D750.

  5. willdmo Avatar

    Nikon is Apple of cameras but not as succesfull. somehow camara brands are more like religion than like manufactorers which should make the best possible tools for photography… this is something I waited for, long time. It proofs my opinion :D

  6. Michael Dornieden Avatar
    Michael Dornieden

    Who needs a Nikon, when you can get a Olympus? ;)

  7. Jim Cascarino Avatar
    Jim Cascarino

    Maybe make cameras that people want.

  8. Ron Roy Avatar
    Ron Roy

    They should give one to the people that have a Nikon.

  9. Chris Cav Gibson Avatar
    Chris Cav Gibson

    Well 2 weeks ago I sold my Nikon D300s along with 8 lenses, primes or f2.8 fixed. Got a good price and brought a Samsung NX1. Best move I ever made. Went to the photo show at the NEC on Saturday and didn’t even look at the Nikon stand!

    1. lord eels Avatar
      lord eels

      hahahahhahahahaahhaha. so typical. I’d wager 85% of mirrorless converts are people who were holding OLD SORRY GEAR and were TOO CHEAP to keep up with the DSLR world!!! enjoy the lens diaspora and dead batteries!

      1. Paul Wren Avatar
        Paul Wren

        What a moronic comment to make. I recently sold my Nikon D800 for a Sony A7 and A7II. It was for portability plus the fact that Sony have many more modern features than Nikon. Does that mean I’m cheap? No it doesn’t, it means that I’m moving with the times. You ought to grow up or grow some braincells child.

        1. lord eels Avatar
          lord eels

          2 Sony mirrorless cameras are not more portable than an obsolete d800. bottom line you sold an obsolete DSLRS because you needed gear. and notice how I said 85%. obviously your specific gear choices are not “normal” by any means. enjoy the lens diaspora and dead batteries!

          1. Paul Wren Avatar
            Paul Wren

            You have no idea. Then again judging by your immature comments you probably have no idea as you’re too young to have a job to pay for gear. Hence all the hate and moronic attitude. No dead batteries over a full wedding day and evening, no lens diaspora and to top it off the customers were happy. As was I with not having to carry those bulky old DSLR’s around. I’ll stick to using bulky equipment when I’m using medium format tyvm, in the meantime you may want to catch up with the times and start saving, DSLR’s are on their way out. Get over it, and grow up whilst you’re at it.

          2. lord eels Avatar
            lord eels

            you are using consumer grade cameras and lenses. period.

          3. Paul Wren Avatar
            Paul Wren

            There’s nothing consumer grade about the Sony A7 series. Plenty of well known professional photographers (sorry, who are you?) have already made the switch due to ease of use, and great features.You have either an outdated way of thinking or you’re only pro if you carry a big camera..ahem, ;)

          4. lord eels Avatar
            lord eels

            those awful shutters, plastic in the body, slow native glass (f/4 zooms? f/1.8 primes? path!)

            the A7s is a pro drone camera, maybe.

            otherwise the entire system is designed for regular consumer.

            seriously, look at that lens line up. no pro. not AT ALL.

          5. Paul Wren Avatar
            Paul Wren

            A pro drone camera. Seriously lol, you have no idea what you are talking about. You sound bitter, maybe Sony didn’t give you a sponsorship, maybe they didn’t like your ‘work’. Get this, apart from medium format, 5×4 and 8×10, every camera is usable by ‘regular’ consumers. Yes even the likes of the Nikon D4. You sound like someone that swaggers around weddings with a big camera taking crappy photos all the while believing that you and only you know what Photography is about. You should lighten up and get off the fanboy wagon of whichever your choice of ‘pro’ camera is, there’s no longer any such thing. If you’re in the business it might be time for you to move on, as you’re just becoming bitter and negative. That stinks of frustration to me. See you later Pro (BTW I too sell my photographs, but I still love the game. If ever I become bitter and twisted like you and egotistical on top of that..Shoot me!) =]

          6. lord eels Avatar
            lord eels

            “pro” cameras have never been about image quality. numbskull. even in the film days you could mount the same lenses and load the same film.

            “pro” cameras are about build. that includes shutter, ergonomics, controls, and inputs.

            the Sony a7 series are not pro cameras. sorry.

          7. Paul Wren Avatar
            Paul Wren

            Do you actually read what you write? The difference in ergonomics, controls and ‘inputs’ are different on the majority of cameras pro or not. Have you felt the difference between Mamiya, Pentax and Hasselblad? Have you ever noticed the difference between a waist level viewfinder and a prism, were you even aware that there are different viewfinders. If so are either of these ergonomics considered to be more pro than another?

            Controls vary on different cameras too, even of the same brand. By your reckoning all Pro cameras would have a similar if not exactly the same layout. By inputs I’m guessing you can only mean the ability to add tethering or remote shutter controls (unless of course you mean outputs etc, it wouldn’t surprise me at all the way you talk saying nothing that means anything). Well guess what, cameras consumer or ‘Pro’ (meaning medium format and above) all have outputs, and inputs, your point is invalid.

            Now I’ll tell you what a pro camera is. It’s any camera that is used by a pro that creates saleable photographs. The camera is just the tool, and that’s why many many Pro’s (real ones not those that talk a lot of tosh such as yourself) have embraced the new technology that is on offer nowadays. They don’t need to carry a big heavy dinosaur of a camera around with them to ‘feel’ like a Pro.

            As for calling me a numbskull you just enhance my point. You’re no Pro, you don’t act Pro and you definitely don’t talk Pro. You sound like someone that invested in a Pro camera thinking it would make your Photographs better, it won’t, and now you’re all bitter. Go take some classes, or even better get out in the field as an assistant to a real Pro. But talk to them the way you talk here and it’ll be game over for any advice that you would have received.

            Sony A7 series. The new choice of Professionals as a carry around camera. Much lighter than a Nikon D4, more features than a D4, more resolution, more ‘controls’, better technologically advanced ‘inputs’ (and outputs) plus half the shutter life. For a quarter of the cost, and no need to look like a dinosaur carrying around a big old piece of technology because you’re ‘pro’. Do you still wind up your car then have someone walk in front with a red flag so people can look at you? You make me laugh.

          8. lord eels Avatar
            lord eels

            enjoy the lens diaspora and dead batteries

  • Sash Avatar

    “plastic cover that comes free with every Nikon camera with a hot shoe” they stopped adding them in d810 and d750

  • Itsme Avatar

    Thats also why i choose to switch to an other brand, after shooting 17 years nikon…
    I would be disappointed if many longtime customers switch…

  • Slim Dynamo Avatar
    Slim Dynamo

    Aw c’mon. Don’t buy into this crap. Ever hear of gaffer tape? Reuseable and doesn’t stick. Nikon needs bucks? Incorporate 4K into their products which is one reason for
    I’m not buying any and I was a die hard Nikon user. Canon too. They might take a lesson from Panasonic and Sony…..no?

  • Marc Pujol Avatar
    Marc Pujol

    Hot shoe cover? Years of shooting on the run, outside in the weather rain or shine… and I never had even the slightest need for a hot shoe cover, especially some shinny silver thing to contrast the flat black body. Anyone remember the Frank Sinatra limited edition Chrysler???? Anyone?

  • Carlos David Avatar
    Carlos David

    Get a plastic one off Ebay with a bubble level

    1. AtlantaTerry Avatar

      I did. US $1 including postage.

  • Mike Hill Avatar
    Mike Hill

    It is not just Nikon that is hurting in the camera market. Mostly every manufacture is hurting because the global economy is hurting.

  • Aaron M Grubb Avatar
    Aaron M Grubb


  • Steve Korevec Avatar
    Steve Korevec

    That MBA degree sure helps today’s corporations develop things that we really need! No wonder they’re loosing money. Carve one from Balsa for fifty cents.

  • Gvido Mūrnieks Avatar
    Gvido Mūrnieks

    Why no?
    35$ is really not that expensive, when you look, that “AR-11” costs roughly the same.
    Is it a useless visual accessory? Of course, but you could say the same, about Nikon Df.

    Would I pay 35$ for hot shoe cover? No, but if someone gave me one – I wouldn’t mind putting it on my D5100.

    1. mambastik Avatar

      That last bit doesn’t really help your argument. That’s like saying: I think $1 is totally worthless, but if someone gave me a buck, it’s going in my wallet.

      1. Gvido Mūrnieks Avatar
        Gvido Mūrnieks

        My last point was, that I think it’s kind a cool. Despite, some people reacting to it, like it’s some kind a “bling nail”, into nikon’s coffin. :D

  • Redseatphoto Avatar

    maybe they are trying to finance the recall efforts of their last two introductions?

  • Juan Guevara Avatar
    Juan Guevara

    Hot shoe cover!!!???! What’s that? Never seen one, never needed one, never going to get one.

    1. AtlantaTerry Avatar

      I needed one because the sharp corners of the hot shoe were cutting the inside liner of my camera case. So I bought one for US $1 from an eBay vendor in China which includes a bubble level. Postage was included.

  • Damien John Velasco Avatar
    Damien John Velasco

    Ladi Gedaria Andrade: I remember someone saying nikon sold more then canon…. hummmm looks like the numbers are out…

    1. Fred Smith Avatar
      Fred Smith

      Both companies are feeling the loss of the low-end consumer market to the smart phones, and are responding by buying up medical imaging companies. It won’t help. At some point–perhaps five years–a derivative of Moore’s Law drives affordable sensor size past 50MP for all consumers, and the ridiculous urge to upgrade every few years will be over.

  • Fred Smith Avatar
    Fred Smith

    I’ll lose the stainless steel cover as fast as the plastic ones. On ebay, the plastic covers go for a few bucks for a package of 5. If you don’t mind waiting a few weeks for the package to arrive from China, that is a much better deal.

  • Eric Jaakkola Avatar
    Eric Jaakkola

    I’m holding out for gold

  • Dieter Chaney Avatar
    Dieter Chaney

    I’m getting one! Lol RT: : I Know Nikon Needs to Boost Sales but This Seems a Bit Much – http://t.co/01yWiufr40” #photography

  • patiferoolz Avatar

    this is my dream coming true!

    but i’ll wait for the gold plated version

  • fabin_h Avatar

    Actually, I think the reason for those things is not only to protect the contacts, but also prevent the metal lips on either side from bending. Happened to me, super annoying. Don’t know if this metal accessory mentioned here makes a difference compared to the normal plastic one, though…

  • AtlantaTerry Avatar

    I use a hot shoe cover that actually does something additional: it has a bubble level built into it. I believe I paid US $1 for it from an eBay seller. Postage was included.

  • Lyle Avatar

    You speak of trolling but this whole article is trolling. Why do you even care let alone take the time to write such a lame piece. Oh, I know, sensationlism and looking for comments. Well, I’m not going to buy into it ;-)