Thursday, August 7, 2008

Six New Nikon Coolpix models (executive summary)

Last night Nikon launched half a dozen new digital camera models. The headliner was the rumored and leaked Coolpix P6000, which offers RAW, hot-shoe, wide-angle, GPS, and uses a 13.5mp 1/1.7" sensor. Nikon returns to "RAW" after a four-year hiatus. The price is $500 and this is expected to compete with the Canon G9, Panasonic LX3, Ricoh GX200 and GX100, and whatever else the Photokina cat brings out of the bag. [permalink]

The outrage of the lot was the 14.5-megapixel Nikon S710, which is a glorified point and shoot with manual exposure and a lens that starts at 28mm wide. But unlike the Panasonic FX150, no RAW.

The remaining four new digital cameras use the 10mp 1/2.3" sensor, and have either 4x or 5x optical zoom lenses. The S60 is their new bijou-flagship with a 3.5" touch-screen LCD display. The S610/S610c twins offer the wifi/no-wifi option in a cool subcompact. And the S560 is a more "vanilla" point and shoot.

Opinion on the new Coolpix models

  1. Nikon wears the crown of the first "traditional" photography company to jump to 14.5 megapixels from 12mp. A thorny crown among the anti-megapixel fans.
  2. It is really sad that in 2008 we have cameras that have a battery life of 140 using a rechargeable LiIon battery, yet they cost $350. This is the Coolpix S60, making it an ideal real-bijou camera, since you can't use it for too long ;-)
  3. What is up with Nikon's release schedule? Other than the S710 and the P6000, the rest of these cameras are "replacing" PMA 2008 models, which are barely six months old since announcement!
  4. The P6000 was an expected but welcome none-the-less return by Nikon to the "serious" fixed-lens digital cameras above the mid-range. They teased fans with the P5000 and P5100, but they finally woke up and smelled the roses with the P6000. The 13.5mp sensor will give buyers an alternative to the 10mp/12mp options out there. This was certainly a welcome and promising addition to the 2008 line-up.

The new Coolpix models have been added to the Giant List of 2008 digital cameras, and also the list of Digital Camera List of current and recent digital camera models.

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