Pre-PMA 2003, 15:00 TOKYO: Nikon has today announced the radical new Coolpix SQ. Once more Nikon has taken their trademark split body design and implemented it into a different form factor. The SQ is a pocketable almost square digital camera which has a twisting lens / flash portion which would typically be orientated 90 degrees to the front in normal shooting situations. The Coolpix SQ measures just 83 x 85 x 25 mm (3.3 x 3.3 x 1.0 in) and weighs 216 g (7.6 oz) fully loaded, slightly larger and heavier than Minolta's DiMAGE X/Xi but still small and pocketable. And it has an AF assist lamp!! Another first for a Nikon Coolpix digital camera.

Click here for our hands-on Quick Preview of the Nikon Coolpix SQ

Press Release (Nikon Europe):

Nikon Squares the Circle

There is no need for technology to be boring - Nikon's new announcement of today 18th Feb 2003 proves that in the field of Digital Camera design, form and function can be combined to produce stunning results.

The product in question is the COOLPIX SQ, a 3 million pixel 3x zoom digital camera with a unique appearance that is equally design statement and technological wonder.

Inside, the camera is 100% Nikon, developed by a team who were given the freedom to range freely within the company, incorporating the best ideas from Pro, Colour Science, Optical and other specialist groups. The resulting images are vibrant in colour and of exceptional clarity delivered though a fast-action shutter and rapid autofocus system.

The sleek exterior of the all-metal body is intended to appeal to the style-conscious audience who will also enjoy the potential of the unique swivel design when taking pictures from any angle, at any place and any time.

Compact size and operational ergonomics make the COOLPIX SQ the ultimate pocketable photo gadget and, exclusive to the COOLPIX SQ, the monitor display uses incident and back lighting to ensure visibility even in bright sunlight.

Elegantly concealed within the body is a slim rechargeable battery that will give up to 65 minutes of operation and Compact flash memory card ready to record still images that will print comfortably at A4 and video clips of up to 40 seconds with audio.

The COOLPIX SQ is supplied with the COOL-STATION MV-10 docking station which serves as a communications station for the camera with a personal computer and recharging station for the battery. Copying of pictures to the computer is achieved with a single press on the COOLSTATION's transfer button, which then sends images to the camera over the fast plug and play USB connection.

Each camera comes with a copy of Nikon View 6 software, which brings a host of features to allow easy management, organisation and editing of pictures, and then provides rapid e-mail print and on-line sharing of pictures with colleagues, family and friends.

The COOLPIX SQ delivers outstanding image quality and formidable functionality in a totally modern, leading-edge design.

Sales release schedule: This camera is scheduled to be released in Spring, 2003. (TBD)

Nikon Coolpix SQ Feature Highlights

Stylish design
The COOLPIX SQ boasts a stylish design with a sleek square body and full-metal casing. Details such as a diamond-cut logo and aluminum lens ring contribute to the camera's sophisticated personality. The camera has a unique swivel lens design that gives users the flexibility to capture images from nearly any angle - including self-portraits.

Impressive image quality
The camera's 1/2.7-in. high-density CCD employs 3.1 effective megapixels to produce ultrahigh-definition 2,016 x 1,512-pixel images. Its 3x optical Zoom-Nikkor lens - featuring a 5.6-16.8mm focal range (equivalent to 37-111mm in 35mm [135] camera format) - and Nikon's advanced image-processing algorithm ensure exceptional color and sharpness for great-looking images on screen, online and with prints as large as B4 size.

Convenient shooting modes provide ease and versatility
The general-purpose Auto mode and 15 Scene Modes make getting great shots easy. Just select the appropriate mode and the COOLPIX SQ will handle all the adjustments automatically. Movie mode can record clips as long as 40 seconds with audio.

Cradle for easy charging and upload
The COOLPIX SQ comes with the Cradle COOL-STATION MV-10. The battery recharges while the camera is in the cradle. Uploading images to a computer (via USB cable) requires a single press of the cradle's transfer button.

Nikon View software
With the supplied Nikon View software, users can browse uploaded images in thumbnail format, enlarge them and obtain shooting information. The software also allows users to adjust the color balance, change the image size for e-mailing or Web posting, run a slide show of selected images, make direct print-outs and eliminate red eyes with a touch of a button.

Scene modes

Portrait Emphasizes a subject with natural skin tones against a soft, appealing background
Party/Indoor Captures the details of dimly lit scenes. The Speedlight fires automatically in low-light situations
Night Portrait Fires the built-in Speedlight to illuminate the subject but keeps the shutter open long enough to capture the background
Beach/Snow Vividly captures the brightness of difficult-to-photograph settings such as snowy fields, beaches and sunlit expanses of water
Landscape Captures distant scenes with exceptional sharpness and clarity
Sunset Enables users to capture the natural beauty of sunsets
Night Landscape Employs slow shutter speeds to capture stunning nightscapes
Museum* Produces clear indoor pictures without triggering the flash
Fireworks Show Instantly responds to the shutter release button to capture fireworks at the ideal moment
Close Up Takes up-close pictures with an artistically blurred background
Copy Renders clear black and white reproductions of text or drawings on a whiteboard or from printed matter
Back Light Speedlight fires automatically to illuminate shadows covering a subject
Sports Uses a fast shutter speed to capture sharp, clear images that freeze the action
Dusk/Dawn Catches the natural-light beauty of dimly lit or hazy situations, such as just before sunrise or after sunset
Panorama Assist Allows you to take several side-by-side images, all at the same exposure and white balance setting, then combine them later using the supplied photo editing software to create spectacular wide-vista images

* Note: Photography is prohibited in some museums and exhibitions.
Be sure to obtain permission before taking pictures in these places.

Nikon Coolpix SQ Major Features

  • 3x optical Zoom Digital Camera featuring 3.1 effective megapixels
  • 3.1 effective megapixels for 2,016 x 1,512-pixel images
  • 3x optical Zoom-Nikkor lens with 5.6-16.8mm coverage (equivalent to 37-111mm in 35mm [135] camera format); digital zoom up to 4x magnification (12x when combined with optical zoom)
  • Newly developed overlapping Matrix Metering and Auto White Balance, and improved image-processing algorithm for accurate and vibrant color reproduction
  • Fast operation: quick start-up, fast autofocus, shorter shutter release time lag, and shortened next-shot preparation
  • Macro shooting capability as close as 4cm (1.6 in.)
  • AUTO Mode for point-and-shoot operation
  • 5-Area Multi Autofocus for easier photo composition
  • 15 Scene Modes � choose from 15 different customized settings (Portrait, Party/Indoor, Night Portrait, Beach/Snow, Landscape, Sunset, Night Landscape, Museum, Fireworks Show, Close Up, Copy, Back Light, Sports, Dusk/Dawn, and Panorama Assist)
  • Transfer button (located on the cradle) for automatic uploading of selected COOLPIX SQ image data to a computer
  • 5-mode manual White Balance with Fine Tuning, Preset and White Balance Bracketing
  • Automatic Noise Reduction function for superior images at slow shutter speeds
  • Easy charging with the Cradle COOL-STATION MV-10
  • Plug-and-play USB interface for smooth connection to a computer (USB Mass Storage Class or PTP)
  • Video/Audio output is available
  • Bright, clear 1.5-in., 117,600-dot, low-temp. polysilicon TFT transflective LCD monitor
  • Comes with Strap, Lens Cap, CF card, USB cable, Audio/Video cable, Cradle COOL-STATION MV-10, Rechargeable Li-ion Battery EN-EL2*, AC Adapter EH-61*, Nikon View CD-ROM
  • LCD Hood HL-CP10 and Camera Case CS-CP15 are available as options
  • Supports Exif 2.2 (Exif Print) **

* Depending on the country or area, the battery and charger may not be included, but will be available as options.
** "Exif Print" is the industrial term for Exif 2.2, which is a newly established standard for Digital Still Camera Image File Format.

Nikon Coolpix SQ Specifications

Sensor 1/2.7" CCD 3.34 million pixels
Color Filter Array RGB
Effective pixels 3.1 million
Lens • 3x optical zoom
• 37 - 111 mm equiv.
• F2.7 - F4.8
Digital zoom Up to 4x
Focus range • Normal: 30 cm - Infinity
� Macro: 4 cm - Infinity
Auto focus • Contrast AF
• Multi area (Auto: 5 points, Manual: 9 points)
• AF assist LED light at low levels
• Continuous / Single AF
Image sizes • 3M (2016 x 1512)
• 2M (1600 x 1200)
• PC (1024 x 768)
• TV (640 x 480)
Image type • Still: JPEG (EXIF 2.2)
• Movie: QuickTime Motion JPEG
Image quality • Fine
• Normal
• Basic
Movie clips • 320 x 240, 15 fps, max 40 sec (with audio)
Sensitivity Auto (ISO 70 - 200)
Metering • Multi-segment
• Center-weighted average
• Spot (center)
Shutter speeds 2 - 1/2000 sec *
* 1/2000 sec only at maximum aperture
Apertures 2 stops: Wide: F2.7 / F4.8
Expoure compen. +/- 2.0 EV in 0.3 EV steps
Shooting modes • Auto
• Scene
• Manual
• Movie
• Voice Memo
• Self-Timer
Scene modes • Portrait
• Party / Indoor
• Night Portrait
• Beach / Snow
• Landscape
• Sunset
• Night Landscape
• Museum
• Fireworks Show
• Close Up
• Copy
• Back Light
• Sports
• Dusk / Dawn
• Panorama Assist
Manual features • White balance selection
• Capture mode
• Best Shot Selector
• Exposure compensation
• Noise Reduction
White balance • Auto
• Five pre-programmed presets
• Manual WB
• WB Bracketing
Drive modes • Single
• Continuous
• Multi-shot 16
Self timer 10 or 3 seconds
Flash • Built-in, beside lens
• Modes: Auto, Flash Cancel, Fill Flash, Red-Eye reduction
Flash range • Wide: 0.15 - 5.0 m
• Tele: 0.15 - 3.7 m
Viewfinder None
LCD Monitor • 1.5" TFT LCD (Transreflective - better performance outdoors)
• 117,600 pixels
• 97% frame view
Playback • Single frame
• Thumbnail (4, 9 segments)
• Slide Show
• Shooting information display
• Quick Review
• Movie(with Sound)
• Zoom playback (Up to 4x, Position can be set)
• Voice Memo
Storage • Compact Flash Type I
• xx MB card included
Power Lithium-Ion EN-EL2 battery (included)
Connectivity • A/V out (on camera)
• DC in (on camera)
• Cool station connector (has DC-IN and USB connector)
Dimensions 83 x 85 x 25 mm (3.3 x 3.3 x 1.0 in)
Weight (no batts) 180 g (6.3 oz)
Weight (fully loaded) 216 g (7.6 oz)
Supplied accessories Strap, Lens Cap, CF card, USB cable, Audio/Video cable, Cradle COOL-STATION MV-10, Rechargeable Li-ion Battery EN-EL2, AC Adapter EH-61, Nikon View CD-ROM

More pictures

Click here for our hands-on Quick Preview of the Nikon Coolpix SQ