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Nikon posts sample images and video from Coolpix A

By dpreview staff on Mar 5, 2013 at 19:21 GMT
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Nikon has posted a gallery of ten images and a video of the new Coolpix A DX-format compact camera. The camera features a 16MP APS-C sensor with no optical low-pass filter and a 28mm equivalent F2.8 prime lens The images that Nikon has posted are taken by documentary photographer Doug Menuez in JPEG Fine (8-bit) mode.

Menuez seems to like the Coolpix A - according to him, "with its fixed 28 mm, it was clear that Nikon was speaking to those who love the discipline and simplicity of prime lenses.The files are mind-blowing, with sharpness that rivals my D4. Yet it fits in my pocket! This camera will go wherever I go."

We've had a chance to use the Nikon Coolpix A as well (although we weren't allowed to take any pictures with ours). Check out our hands-on preview for our first impressions, and let us know what you think in the comments. 

Taken in Aperture-Priority mode at ISO 320 and Auto white balance
 Taken in Manual exposure mode at ISO 100 and Auto white balance
 Taken in Aperture-Priority mode at ISO 125 and Auto white balance
Taken in Aperture-Priority mode at ISO 320 and Auto white balance
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Nikon Coolpix A

Comments

Total comments: 50
lumbatius
By lumbatius (Mar 18, 2013)

Heavy stair-stepped edges, washed out colors and unnatural color rendition is not what I would call good quality images! I do not know if it is because of limited photographic skills of the user or camera capability? What do you think?

0 upvotes
TruePoindexter
By TruePoindexter (Mar 21, 2013)

Which image are you looking at specifically? I'm not seeing aliasing at 100%.

0 upvotes
Summi Luchs
By Summi Luchs (Mar 8, 2013)

Nice collection of sample photos. The camera, nevertheless is a niche product in my eyes. Surely a useful tool for unobstrusive foto reportage. Its price point is clearly aimed to the professional market. You will get most of what you can get out of a Sony RX-1 for less than half of its price (assuming the advantage of a 24 MP sensor is not too often visible in handheld reportage photos and most real world pictures are not taken at the high ISO limit). Don't know if this enough for economical success.

0 upvotes
Nismo350Z
By Nismo350Z (Mar 8, 2013)

Now that FX DSLRs have shrunk a bit (as in the D600), Nikon appears to be heading in the same direction with DX in the form of Coolpix A. Now if they could just add an F-mount to it then it would sell like hotcakes.

0 upvotes
TruePoindexter
By TruePoindexter (Mar 22, 2013)

If it had an F-mount it would be SLR sized as the F-mount specification requires the distance between the sensor and lens mount. It would definitely not be a pocketable point and shoot.

0 upvotes
ch01
By ch01 (Mar 7, 2013)

I love the samples from Nikon, I mean, clicking through the sample gallery, the 3 black n white images and Sample 5 are among the best sample shots I have seen; they are very artistically captured.

4 upvotes
Sekura Drops
By Sekura Drops (Mar 7, 2013)

The IQ represented in the photos are nice (photos are not :P ) but with the claimed price it would be a no go for me. The options you may reach with this price would offer more than this camera can, such as m43 systems. 25 1.4 panasonic or recently 17 1.8 (lovely 35mm equivalent for some) on an epl5 for ex. Still cheaper too :S

1 upvote
marike6
By marike6 (Mar 7, 2013)

The photos are superb, I'm not sure what you're seeing but this set of images are some of the strongest release day samples in recent memory.

As for a m43 camera if you already own a system camera like a DSLR, why would you want to buy into yet another lens mount? Besides, m43 lenses are some of the most expensive in all of photography. $500 plus $100 for the lens hood for the 17 f/1.8, $900 for a 75 1.8 or $1600 for a 35-100 2.8 lens. Seriously? I don't see many DSLR shooters, who are interested in running dual systems, but who knows. I could perhaps understand the Fuji X system, but the better m43 gear is $$$ and you are still not getting the IQ of this Coolpix A.

6 upvotes
mrbilla
By mrbilla (Mar 6, 2013)

i just wonder where camera companies get their test photographers from, awful photographs

3 upvotes
marike6
By marike6 (Mar 7, 2013)

Lol. You're kidding right? Doug Menuez is an award winning, published professional photographer. Most of us would be happy to have 1/10th of the talent he has. What I wonder is who are the people up-voting your comments.

http://www.menuez.com/

Comment edited 5 minutes after posting
7 upvotes
nikoj
By nikoj (Mar 6, 2013)

I'd much rather opt for EX-1 with 18mm f2, or 100Xs; both which could be had for $200 more. I don't care so much that this camera is "pocketable" - but that maybe most important for some... I don't like my pockets weighed down with yet another device - in addition to my cell phone. How much stuff does one really care to carry in their pockets anyway?

0 upvotes
AnHund
By AnHund (Mar 6, 2013)

Great design and IQ.

2 upvotes
Charlleck
By Charlleck (Mar 6, 2013)

Why wasn't DPreview allowed to take any pics with their Coolpix A? That movie was hideous and painful to watch.

3 upvotes
SunnyFlorida
By SunnyFlorida (Mar 6, 2013)

Sooooo, most of the sample images are kept below ISO 400, why is Nikonnot showing the high ISO IQ of the camera?

2 upvotes
marike6
By marike6 (Mar 6, 2013)

There are some more samples here. (copy and paste the below link in your address bar).

http://www.flickr.com/photos/nikonfrance/sets/72157632921362676/with/8531062486/

2 upvotes
tompabes2
By tompabes2 (Mar 6, 2013)

Impressive quality, and I take 99% of my shots at 28mm... I guess that this is the ultimate compact for people who love this focal length.

1 upvote
frapeace
By frapeace (Mar 6, 2013)

Impressive but... a new Sony a Nex with 20mm 2.8... better

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 8 minutes after posting
2 upvotes
marike6
By marike6 (Mar 6, 2013)

I almost bought a NEX-5R until I saw all Sony App Store bloatware on it. Not into smartphone features on a camera. Just want a simple to use, logically laid out menu that's responsive.

2 upvotes
pgphoto_ca
By pgphoto_ca (Mar 6, 2013)

In general, at f2.8 on DX at 35mm, the DOF is to wide.....

If we look at the first sample image at f2.8....it's a "typical" street photographye.....it is very sharp !!! ...but the DOF is too depth....

a f1.4 lens will be great :)

Comment edited 3 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
HowaboutRAW
By HowaboutRAW (Mar 6, 2013)

pgphoto_ca:

And that 1.4 lens would add to the cost, the weight, and the bulk.

0 upvotes
RudivanS
By RudivanS (Mar 6, 2013)

D4 like image quality at this body size seems real nice for street photography.
Let's see how it performs once it's out and fully tested.
I's gotta be quick and highly responsive.

2 upvotes
gl2k
By gl2k (Mar 6, 2013)

Sonys $3000 RX1 is kinda letdown with respect to low-light AF performance.

0 upvotes
LaFonte
By LaFonte (Mar 6, 2013)

It is actually very impressive details and sharpness.

2 upvotes
wmac
By wmac (Mar 5, 2013)

Dynamic range FAIL?

0 upvotes
Photog74
By Photog74 (Mar 6, 2013)

I guess you mean the washed-out patch of sky in the first photo. Well, when your subjects receive no direct illumination from the sun, they tend to be a lot - and I mean a lot - darker than the sky, so if you correctly expose them, the sky will almost certainly go white. If you don't like this, shoot negative film (or perhaps light your subjects).

0 upvotes
Retzius
By Retzius (Mar 5, 2013)

So lets get this straight. Nikon has not come out with a DX prime wide angle lens for their Dslr line but comes out with one in a half baked over priced compact camera that doesnt compare at all to the competition? I could get the Canon Eos M 18mpx INTERCHANGABLE lens compact camera for less money or the Fuji 100xs for the same money with way more features.

1 upvote
Photog74
By Photog74 (Mar 6, 2013)

I have no interest in a 18.5mm DX lens but would love a 16mm.
This Nikon compact does not sound terribly exciting either (though mentioning the Canon EOS M in any sort of positive context - apart from video - seems, erm, unjustified to me). Agree the X100S is a way more intriguing camera.

0 upvotes
mike kobal
By mike kobal (Mar 5, 2013)

the images sure look impressive and we expect nothing less from the DX portion of the D800E sensor. However, let's be fair, especially in this case, because it is so obvious, we should give the photographer credit, he did a great job on his part, doesn't happen too often these days that camera companies put their products in competent hands.

5 upvotes
marike6
By marike6 (Mar 5, 2013)

I agree with Mike. The IQ looks terrific but that is true for most camera sample images. In this case, they are excellent, well shot images.

Also looking at this camera on B&H, it actually looks impressive build quality-wise with all metal knurled dials. Even the little DX symbol is embossed, not like the cheesy Zeiss sticker on the RX100. And like the X100s, "Made in Japan" clearly stamped on the back.

1 upvote
Mescalamba
By Mescalamba (Mar 5, 2013)

Zeiss sticker might be cheesy, but Im quite positive ppl care about lens, not stickers. Or at least I do.

0 upvotes
gl2k
By gl2k (Mar 6, 2013)

The concept of the camera is definitely intriguing. Unfortunately Nikon messed it up with an odd lens and omitted VF.

1 upvote
HowaboutRAW
By HowaboutRAW (Mar 6, 2013)

gl2k:

There's a hotshoe OVF, for something like $400.

0 upvotes
Jefftan
By Jefftan (Mar 5, 2013)

how much smaller compare with NEX-3N which is $500
why should anyone buy this
too much money to throw away?

3 upvotes
tkbslc
By tkbslc (Mar 5, 2013)

It's only about 25mm thinner than that combo.

Comment edited 10 seconds after posting
1 upvote
Mescalamba
By Mescalamba (Mar 5, 2013)

Blind Nikon fanboy probably.

Btw. NEX-5N is better choice, probably best implementation of that sensor so far, and unfortunately its gone.

1 upvote
devlin2427
By devlin2427 (Mar 5, 2013)

For some odd reason the embedded pictures look slightly desaturated. Otherwise the usual stuff from a 16Mpx APS sensor and a decent lens. Unfortunately not 1100$ worthy.

1 upvote
marike6
By marike6 (Mar 5, 2013)

I think you're right abut the colors, I noticed it took. The EXIF files says "Color Space Information: Uncalibrated". It should say sRGB for web display to look best, AFAIK.

Other than that, wow. These images look very impressive.

1 upvote
Michael_13
By Michael_13 (Mar 5, 2013)

Great sharpness and no visible noise, but one thing bothers me:

Skin colors. Especially lips look very artificial to me.
So far I've only known this problem from Panasonic.

1 upvote
Deeso
By Deeso (Mar 5, 2013)

That happens when you take pictures of pale redheads in winter :V

3 upvotes
FreedomLover
By FreedomLover (Mar 5, 2013)

Do you really think manufacturers like Nikon don't heavily manipulate pictures before publishing them ?
In this case, they look processed following the fashion of many contemporary TV or film productions with a cold green-blue tint, and desaturated as you say. Of course the advanced software they use doesn't treat all colours the same. I would also expect noise reduction to be done outside the camera.
Besides that, this is a camera for autists: everything except the main subject is always far away.

1 upvote
HowaboutRAW
By HowaboutRAW (Mar 6, 2013)

Michael_13:

Why are you making skin tone comments without access to raws?

0 upvotes
Beckler8
By Beckler8 (Mar 5, 2013)

Why the hell can you download the orig. stills but not the video? Pretty dumb...

0 upvotes
BingoCharlie
By BingoCharlie (Mar 5, 2013)

Nice looking files, but plenty of advanced compacts could deliver the same in the hands of a skilled photographer. This camera really is impressively small, but it's also overpriced. It would be more appealing if it were either cheaper or more special. Give it an f/1.4 lens that can deliver really dreamy rendering. Or cut the price to $699.

2 upvotes
marike6
By marike6 (Mar 5, 2013)

Perhaps they couldn't have made it as camera as small as it with a larger max aperture lens. Perhaps we should thank all the users who are always clamoring for pocketability that companies feel they need to make everything compact no matter what.

As far as price, a niche product like a fixed focal length camera will always be more expensive as demand will be lower than your megazoom models.

1 upvote
AbrasiveReducer
By AbrasiveReducer (Mar 5, 2013)

Proves you can do a lot of things wrong and charge too much but if the sensor is big, the quality is superior. Big sensor and no AA filter with a fixed focal length is tough to beat.

Comment edited 3 minutes after posting
1 upvote
mpgxsvcd
By mpgxsvcd (Mar 5, 2013)

If it was an interchangeable lens camera I would be very interested.

2 upvotes
tompabes2
By tompabes2 (Mar 6, 2013)

If it was an interchangeable lens camera, it would have been bigger and heavier. If it had a zoom instead of a prime lens, image sharpness would not have been the same. Choices have to be made, because we still have to follow the laws of physics... :) This is clearly a product for 28mm lovers, and will have its market... I use 28mm 99% of the time, so this proves that there's at least some market for this camera. ;)

0 upvotes
t.c. marino
By t.c. marino (Mar 7, 2013)

i agree with most of the comments here..what is the purpose/aim of this camera?yes it has great iq..but so does my "$399"dollar sony nex c3..same chip, that i use exclusively with nikkor prime LENSES..did i mention that i can change lenses with my sony nex c3?..sorry folks but the sony nex system is much better...and you can use nikkor lenses with the sony..if this camera was $599..maybe.i'm a nikon user almost 30 years,this camera and the v1/v2 are wayy overpriced

0 upvotes
white shadow
By white shadow (10 months ago)

Nikon is trying to learn some fatal tricks from Leica by pricing it high. They want to make it into a collectible item like the Nikon 28Ti.

At least, most of us are lucky to be able to buy it at half the price of the Leica X2. Oh, at this price, you cannot have the red dot on it.

0 upvotes
piratejabez
By piratejabez (Mar 5, 2013)

I have no interest in the camera itself, but the image quality looks impressive! Living up to DX.

4 upvotes
Total comments: 50