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JPEG Image Size & Quality

The Coolpix 2500 keeps its overall operation simple (thus no TIFF or RAW modes) but also manages to provide the user with a good selection of image size and quality settings. You can choose from 1600 x 1200, 1280 x 960, 1024 x 768 and 640 x 480 for the image size and Fine, Normal or Basic as JPEG quality settings.


Standard Test Scene

To give an impression of what some of the combinations of image size and quality produce the table below is a cross reference of some of them:

  • 1600 x 1200 Fine
  • 1600 x 1200 Normal
  • 1600 x 1200 Basic
  • 1280 x 960 Fine
  • 1024 x 768 Fine
  • 640 x 480 Fine

Images below are cropped 240 x 100 area of the image magnified 200% (nearest neighbour).


 
1600 x 1200
Fine
600 KB
Normal
399 KB
Basic
212 KB
 

 
1280 x 960
Fine
433 KB
 

 
1024 x 768
Fine
278 KB
 

 
640 x 480
Fine
123 KB

In the JPEG quality steps between Fine, Normal and Basic show a progressive increase in JPEG artifacts (as we'd expect). Having said that 1600 x 1200 Normal seems to provide the best compromise between quality and storage capacity for users with small to medium storage cards. Other users would be best to stick with 1600 x 1200 Fine.


Sharpening

The Coolpix 2500 provides five different image sharpening settings. Auto (the default) causes the camera to automatically select High, Normal or Low settings depending on the image content. For the best results without sharpening artifacts the Low setting seemed to be the best, although you will have to be prepared to sharpen the image later using something like an Unsharp filter in Photoshop.

Sharpening: Auto Sharpening: High
Sharpening: Normal Sharpening: Low
 
Sharpening: None  
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