All good things...
You might wonder why, considering that the Nishika lab did such a good job of making prints and that Nishika put so much effort into
promoting and marketing their product, that Nishika isn't around anymore. There are actually a couple of reasons for this, the first
is the same reason Nimslo isn't around anymore, the second involves something Nimslo probably never thought of.
Though sales of the N8000 were brisk at first, they eventually started to slow down. One of the problems with the N8000 was that it
was larger and heavier than the Nimslo, and few pockets were large enough for it. This led to the introduction of the N9000 which was
a sleeker, more compact and lighter camera that could easily fit many pockets.
The N9000 had a two position aperture lever which selected F8 and F16, had a built in lens cover and a film identification window.
It also called for ASA 200 film outdoors and ASA 1600 film indoors, unlike the N8000 which was designed for ASA 100 only.
The Nishika N9000 is, in many ways, what the N8000 should have been, and, indeed, what many sellers falsely claim the N8000 is, it really does sport a lens cover and film identification window!
A company called Image Tech introduced its own lenticular camera which featured 3 lenses instead of 4, possibly to get around
some of the old Nimslo patents. The new camera, aside from being more compact and lighter than the N8000, also featured built in
electronic flash and motorized film advance. This company also provided lenticular processing, thus giving Nishika some serious
If any of the prizes listed were actually what they were purported to be their value would be far in excess
of the $498.50 that was paid by the original owner, yet this letter states that the recipient will receive one of them!
This is obviously a photocopy of a letter which was originally two sided. The information on the other side was not included
At about half the cost of the N8000, the Image Tech 3D trio featured motorized film advance, automatic exposure conrol, built
in electronic flash, a built in protective lens cover, film identification window and 3 element coated glass lenses, yet was small
enough to fit in most coat pockets.
Perhaps because of this pressure, Nishika resorted to marketing tactics that crossed the line from misleading to downright illegal!
In 1992, Nishika began running a prize promotion scheme in which the victims were promissed prizes in exchange for paying up to $700 for a Nishika camera. Any one of the prizes, if really what it was represented to be would be worth far more than $700, yet they were told they would receive two of them.
What they actually got, of course, was worth no where near what they were promissed, or what they paid.
It is entirely possible that Nishika had already ceased production of the N8000 as early as late 1991, and that this prize scheme was an attempt to unload a bunch of unsold cameras.
To this day there are Nishika boosters who claim that Nishika was an innocent victim in all this, but the letters shown below
would suggest otherwise. The FTC didn't buy it either, and got a
multimillion dollar settlement against them.
Letter from Nishika, with personal information blacked out, came included with the camera, which was apparently ordered over the
phone and paid for with a credit card. This letter hints at the fraudent activity that led to a judgement against Nishika.
The cheap jewelry mentioned in the letter was not included with the package I purchased on eBay, it was probably worth less than $10
Note that this letter speaks of "hundreds of thousands" of nishika users. It is highly doubtful that there were even one hundred
thousand Nishika 3D cameras sold, let alone in use at any one time!
Nishika went bankrupt, and its assets were siezed by the court.
Many of the victims bought the camera just for the premiums/prizes they were promissed and never actually used the camera. Many such
cameras are still being sold on eBay in mint condition. The camera I bought and the case were in mint condition, and the flash was
never removed from the original shrinkwrap, yet the boxes that the camera, case and film were in were badly scuffed, suggesting that
the original purchaser had received shopworn merchandise!
Though the settlement against Nishika is usually blamed for its demise, it is likely they would have soon gone out of business even
if the FTC had never investigated them. It is even possible that the prize promotion scheme may have actually postoponed the bankruptcy!
The number of Nishika cameras manafactured seems to greatly exceed the number that were sold while the company was still in business.
To this day the camera is widely available in NOS condition even though it hasn't been made for over 20 years!
When the Nishika lab closed down, 3D Image Technologies briefly reversed its policy of not processing pictures taken with 4
lens cameras. By the time they closed shop in 1999, at least one other company was offering lenticular processing. The domain,
3dit.com, has now been taken over by an unrelated firm and it isn't really clear, judging from the website, what kind of business
this actaully is.
As late as November 2011 at least one company , snap3d.com, still offered lenticular processing, but the machine used for normal print proecessing failed and now printing is done only from digital stereo pairs.
Though the Nishika could certainly be used for purposes other than taking 3D lenticular prints, the after market uses for the Nishika
seem to be more limited than for the Nimslo. The N8000 is larger and heavier than the Nimslo and so it isn't as handy to carry around
as a lightweight, expendable and easy to use stereo camera for situations where more expensive equipment would be out of the
The adjustability range of only 2½ f stops is no where near enough for slide film so the Nishika wasn't suitable as a cheap
camera for taking stereo slides to be mounted in half frame mounts as was often done with the Nimslo. It is possible, however, that
some people have used it to make half frame stereo prints.
The same kind of misleading tactics used to market the N8000 in the beginning are still being used today by sellers selling it as
NOS. This includes touting exxagerated or even imaginary features such as a "built in protective lens cover" (really, where?). One
seller states that it is "very compact and lightweight" even though it is the largest and bulkiest consumer level 35mm lenticular camera
This deception also includes flat out lies about other cameras. Many sellers state that all other lenticular cameras are point and
shoot, specifically stating that the N9000 lacks adjustable apertures, when, of course, it has a two position aperture selector
that covered a range 2 f stops wide, vs 2½ for the N8000. For more details of the continuing market deception, see the
Nishika Hype page.