Nikon Museum – Learning about cameras, optical equipment

The Nikon Museum provides an excellent setting to learn about the history of cameras, as well as the firm’s technologies in the fields of aeronautics, bioscience and medical equipment.

Photographic works on display in a special section change every three months. About 450 cameras are on display in a large glass showcase, including such fine products as the much-coveted Nikon Model 1 — Nikon Corp.’s first camera, released in 1948. Rare items, such as cameras specially developed for the U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration, also are on display. One of them was carried on the space shuttle Columbia for its launch in 1981. The museum also features the Interactive Theater, where four projectors display images on a 3.5-meter-tall by 5.9-meter-wide screen of objects ranging in size from nanometers (a millionth of a millimeter) to the light-years of cosmic space. The projections include those of an influenza virus, the process of placing circuitry on a semiconductor substrate and the moon and Mars.


Nikon was launched in 1917 with the aim of establishing an optical industry independent of Western technology.

The goal of the Nikon Museum is to “enhance the appeal of the optical equipment for both adults and kids,” said Yoshiki Kitamura, vice director of the museum. To this end, the museum has also opened a Lens Laboratory, where children can get hands-on experience of photography with a touch-panel auto guide. They can choose video images of insects or other members of the animal kingdom and adjust the virtual camera’s shutter speed, 300m effect and ISO light sensitivity levels to take three photos of the subjects in whatever composition and brightness they like. After that, they receive advice in text form on the device, which says such things as, “Brightness can be maintained for subjects even in the dark if you increase the ISO level.”

Location: 2nd floor of the Nikon Corp. headquarters at Shinagawa Intercity Tower C (2-15-3 Konan, Minato Ward, Tokyo near JR Shinagawa Station)

Open: 10 a.m.-6 p.m. (no entry after 5:30 p.m.). Closed on Sundays and national holidays.

Admission: free

Tel: (03) 6433-3900

Source: Let’s go to the museum Apr 29,2016 The Japan News


  • By Taku Yaginuma / Special to The Yomiuri Shimbun  A nano-sized world projected on a large screen. The circle seen at the upper left is an influenza virus.