Thursday, January 7, 2010

Coolpix S1000pj – a review and HNY!!

Happy New Year, hope your Christmas bought you lots of wondrous things, family, food, presents and camera gear!

I’m not one for point and shoot cameras - meaning I like to work for my images, checking light, getting the shot in to the right frame and tweaking with iso, aperture and ensuring the dof is right etc etc….

But I had the opportunity to review this great new camera from Nikon.

This camera fits in to the palm of your hand, has heaps of great features, is easy to use and can project your images on to the wall. Yes you heard right.

From the first set up setting your language, date and time, the newest p& s from Nikon is very easy to navigate and use. Once the rechargeable Li-on battery is charged and you have put the SD card in the memory card holder you’re ready to go.
If you want to just take photos the auto setting is the best way to go.

The neat little camera in auto mode has flash, macro & exposure compensation with self timer. Its settings for each different environment and or subject were impressive. It has auto vibration reduction and motion detection
Using the scene/shooting selection mode opens up many possibilities with more than 15 options to choose from.

For me the most interesting option was panorama assist. You simply take the first frame of the scene, it becomes translucent and you can take the next photo and so on, great for lining up your images and turning them in to one big panorama. Don’t forget to turn off the VR if you’re using a tripod. Nikon have included in their software panorama maker from Arc soft to assist in the post production of your final results.
The Macro mode and evening/dusk mode is very good with results see photo of bee on spring onion ball flower.

Smart portrait mode got me interested as well. Its features include: skin softening, smile timer and blink proof. These funky features actually made me laugh but they do work. There are also in house retouching features that are cute too!

The video mode is easily assessable via the main menu and provides great ability to record with the microphone on the front of the camera. (WAV and AVI files are the results)
The camera card so far has allowed for 300 odd photos and two sessions of recording mini videos, one of which was taken outside and one inside producing good results. The card is a 4GB card and still has plenty to go.
It seems the card was formatted but the camera like most can format cards if needed.
The video picture clarity and sound is average (comparable to say a designated style video cam)
but great for projecting ( dark rooms are best!) it was also emailable and u tubeable.
Is that a word..LOL… the start up only takes a few seconds so it makes for a great back up for capturing those memories from the reserves of your handbag and or pocket.
This camera had a Lowpro case bought for it to hold the camera, the stand (for projecting) and a remote also for projecting, it makes for a tight unit.

Speaking of projecting the projector feature of this camera is pretty cool. I found it works well on a ceiling and or a wall. It can project from 5 – 40 in and the range is from 0.26 to 2 metres (10 in to 6ft 6 in the old language ) The multi selection button can be used as a toggle to advance photos and the slider sharpens the image projected. To minimise keystoneing you can use your tripod and for image brightness ensure your batteries are fully charged. Due to the fact the battery life is only one hour I would strongly recommend you buy a second battery for those times where you need that extra hour. The remote makes for great fun as well.

Viewing screen – this is a whopping 2.7in with 5 levels of adjustment if needed.
The playback menu has over 10 options including quick retouch, small pictures and slide show.
Some tech bits:
· Multi shot 16
· Iso: 80 - 6400
· Pixels ( effective) 12.1
· Focal length 5.0 -25.0 ( equiv with 35mm( 135 ) format picture angle 28-140mm)
· F stop 3.9 -5.8 & aperture range is 2 stops – f3.9 &7/8 (W)
· AF – 3cm for macro setting & 30cm – 50cm. Focus are selection has 99 focus areas with face priority.
· Shutter speed 1/1500 -2s ( four seconds when your shooting fireworks )
Over all a great little P&S camera jam packed with features and well worth the investment of under $700. AUD from national retailers.

Buy a mono pod or a funky gorilla pod for it, a second battery, a lowpro case (helps the polar bears) and a extra card for it.

Do yourself a favor check it out its pretty cool and see results of playing with it for a day!