Nikon Coolpix S1 review
I bought the S1 in response to its appealing form factor and design. If I had read further about its limitations, I might not.
Picture quality is diappointing. 50 ISO is the only setting where noise is not problematic. At 50 ISO the "shake" warning blinks under almost all circumstances except on a fully sunny day.
And well it should... it is almost impossible to hold this camera steady enough to get a sharp photo under cloudy conditions or inside. I have decided that for cameras of the S1's light weight, limitations in max aperture, and noisy chip (requiring 50 ISO) image stabilization is an absolutely essential feature... don't leave home without it! My wife can hold her (unstabilized) Canon A85 steady at 1/8 of a second. Even she can't consistently hold the (unstabilized) S1 steady on a cloudy day.
My other digital camera is a Canon G2. Picture success rate with the Canon approaches 100% under all lighting conditions. With S1, only 60%-75%,
Cool. Pocketable. Lens doesn't extend. Discreet. Modes work OK (use "Museum mode" to reduce consequences of shake... seems to work in some circumstances). Macro mode really great. Control layout fine.
Shake! Noise! Lots of barrel distortion at wide-angle. Too few shutter speeds. Too few zoom increments. No T or A or M modes. Focus hunts in dim light. Flash nearly useless except for macro. Case scratches easily.
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