A Brief History of Nikon Cameras
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Nikon began life as Nippon Kogaku, an optical company in 1917, and like many camera companies it made a good living making lenses for other camera firms and the military. They were, in fact, Canon's lens supplier in the 30s and 40s, until Canon developed its own optical facilities.

But after World War II, Nikon decided to begin making cameras of its own. Its early cameras were Leica-copies, but by the late 50s they brought out a camera that rocked the photographic world, the famous Nikon F. The F was a high quality, 35mm system SLR that went a long way to establish Japan as a maker of excellent equipment instead of junk, and began the burial of the American camera manufacturers who simply could not make competitive cameras.

The F became the camera of choice of many professional photographers, a niche they would continue through the rest of the century. They expanded their 35mm camera line to the amateur ranks, offered a variety of point-n-shoots, and even moved into the underwater market with their Nikonos series. They continued to make and sell high-quality optics for various cameras and applications.

Nikon continues today as the standard against which all 35mm camera makers are compared, and have made a substantial investment in digital photography.

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