Nikon Coolpix A comparative review
Body & Design
The Coolpix A is a small camera by most sensible standards, especially when you consider it contains an APS-C sized sensor. In this diagram we've included the dimensions of the strap lugs, which protrude by a couple of millimeters on either side of the body. If you include these, it's essentially the same width as the Ricoh GR, but a touch deeper. Both cameras will fit fairly easily into a coat pocket, if not quite into a pair of jeans.
Top of camera
The top of the camera is pretty conventional, playing host to the mode dial (with its two customizable 'U' positions) and the main control dial. The power switch is a spring lever around the shutter release, that you pull back to turn the camera on and off.
In the hand
The Coolpix A is a small camera - being around 10% larger than Sony's RX100 in every dimension. This means it will fit in coat pockets, even if it won't quite fit in most trouser pockets. The camera's front and rear panels are aluminium alloy, while the top plate is magnesium alloy, so the camera has the cold, rugged feeling you'd expect of a camera costing this much.
The Coolpix A's user interface will be immediately familiar to an entry-level Nikon DSLR user. As usual, pressing the [i] button brings up a settings panel screen. The arrow keys navigate around the screen, then pressing 'OK' lets you select a setting to change, with a second 'OK' press required to confirm the change.
|The Coolpix A's interface is essentially the same as the one used in the company's DSLRs.
And, just as on a Nikon DSLR, pressing the [i] button allows you to interact with the settings.
The Coolpix A features two control dials - a primary dial on the top right-hand shoulder of the camera and a standard compact camera dial around the four way controller. The primary dial, as you'd expect, sets the primary exposure parameter (Shutter speed in M or S mode, Aperture value in A mode, Program Shift in P mode).
Sadly, as with many photographers' compacts we've tried, the dial on the rear of the camera is rather under-used. In manual exposure mode it controls the aperture value, but it's unused in both S and A modes. There's no sign of the Nikon 'Easy Exposure Compensation' option in the menus that would allow its use to control exposure compensation directly in P, S and A modes, as happens on twin-dial Nikon DSLRs. Instead you have to hold down the Exposure Compensation button and spin the top dial.
The directional keys on the 4-way controller are used to move the autofocus point around the frame during shooting, as well as navigating menus and the [i] settings screen.
The Coolpix A has two customizable function buttons - one on the front plate of the camera, the other on the rear left. The front button (Fn1), can be set to one of eleven options. The ISO button, which can be re-purposed as Fn2, can have one of seven functions applied to it.
Any on/off setting simply requires you to press the button and the effect is active for your next shot (e.g. Flash value lock or +Raw). Any parameter that has multiple settings, such as flash mode or ISO is controlled by holding the button down and spinning the main control dial. No confirmation step is required, so the process is pretty rapid.
Better still, the camera offers good control over Auto ISO, meaning it's possible to re-assign the ISO/Fn2 button without having too much impact on convenience. The Auto ISO option allows you to specify the maximum sensitivity the camera will use, along with the minimum shutter speed it should allow before increasing ISO (with a 1/1000th to 1 sec range being selectable). Given the camera's single focal length, this makes it easy to specify a shutter speed appropriate for avoiding either camera shake or subject movement, then get on with shooting.
| • Flash mode (default)
• Release mode
• FV lock
• AE/AF lock
• AE lock only
| • AE lock (Hold)
• AF lock only
• Exposure Compensation
• + NEF (Raw)
| • ISO Sensitivity (default)
• White Balance
• Image Size/Quality
| • Active D-Lighting
• Auto Bracketing
• Monitor brightness
Apr 18, 2016
Mar 23, 2016
Dec 14, 2015
Jul 27, 2015
|scrum break away by al booth|
from Sport competition
|Chinese Acrobat by lim yau tong|
|Parking Deck by Olaf R|
from Your City - Parking Garage
|Communication Tech by alberto_b|
|With & without by OBellini|
from Empty - Full
When one of his friends got a filter stuck on his $1,700 Canon EF 24-70mm F2.8L, former MythBuster Adam Savage removed it using an unlikely, terrifying tool: a band saw.
The New Yorker asked Magnum's famed photographers, in town for the agency's 70th anniversary, to go out and capture 'the fleeting beauty of New York City's golden hour.' This is what they shot.
Roger Cicala is a difficult man to impress, but he's been waxing lyrical over at Lensrentals about Sony's new 12-24mm wide zoom.
Glassware is one of the most challenging subjects to photograph, especially against a white background. This tutorial shows you how to do it with hardly any gear.
Handevision is now shipping its all-metal Iberit 90mm F2.4 short telephoto lens for Leica M-mount 35mm and full-frame cameras.
Isocell comprises four sub-brands: Bright, Fast, Slim and Dual which are tailored to specific mobile device market demands.
The new store will be located at the Fotografiska center for contemporary photography in Stockhom, Sweden and carry the full range of Hasselblad products.
A recent vacation gave Richard a chance to think about the needs of travel photography – and how our reviews might recognize the perfect travel camera.
Need more evidence that 2017 is the year analog begins its comeback? Well, welcome another new film stock to the world.
The winners of the 10th annual iPhone Photography Awards have been announced, and they're striking.
If you were disappointed by reports that the Sony a9 struggles with adapted Canon glass, you might be able to take some comfort from Metabones' latest update.
Blackmagic Design has dropped the prices of its Video Assist external monitor/recorders for a limited time. Prices of the SD card-based recorders will be reduced in all markets, while supplies last.
Instagram has started testing a new feature called 'favorites' that enables users to share photos with only certain people. Only a small number of users have access to the feature at this time, though it may roll out to everyone in the future.
Lensbaby has announced the Velvet 85 F1.8 for interchangeable lens cameras. The lens is available in Canon, Nikon, Sony E, Sony A, Pentax K, Samsung NX, Fuji X and Micro 4/3 mounts.
It's the end of an era. Parent company Micron has announced that they are discontinuing the Lexar retail brand. This includes 'memory cards, USB flash drives, readers, and storage drives.'
Youthful trainspotter turned adult photographer, John Sanderson has traveled across the United States, documenting the country's railroads. But you won't find any trains in his pictures.
Sony's new CMOS sensor is backside-illuminated and offers an all-pixel global reset function which should drastically reduce rolling shutter effect when panning.
Shoulderpod has converted its offerings into a lego-like modular system by offering all individual parts of existing products separately, allowing users to build exactly the rig they need for a specific project or simply replace a damaged part.
Photographer Felix AAA has spent the past ten years touring the world with a variety of musicians, capturing behind the scenes shots and portraits. He talks about some of his favorite images on the FujiFilm Blog.
A roll of film discovered in an Argus C2 from an Oregon Goodwill turned out to contain some incredible images – and has been re-united with the original owner's family.
Nikon's 28mm F1.4E ED appears to roundly complete the company's updated lineup of fast, professional prime lenses. We've already seen some initial images from a Nikon ambassador, but we've worked through a gallery of our own, with a lens of our own over the past week. Take a look.
Google is holding a competition that could see your Pixel photos gracing millions of screens.
Nikon's 100th birthday party continues worldwide as a distributor in Italy organized a one-of-a-kind feat: assembling the world's largest 'human camera' from over a thousand volunteers.
Ricoh has dropped the price of its Theta SC 360 spherical camera by to $199, a reduction of roughly $50. The camera features two 12MP sensors and can record Full HD video in addition to stills.
Photojournalist Pete Souza served as the presidential photographer for both Ronald Reagan and Barack Obama. In an interview with fellow photographer Marcia Nighswander, he discusses several of his most noteworthy images.
Photographer Michael Wolf has been documenting the crowded conditions of Tokyo's subway trains since the 1990s. The photos have gone viral regularly in the years since he started the project, and he just published the final edition in the series.
The just-launched OnePlus 5 is getting a minor update that should improve camera function.
A Belgian camera shop is showing off an extremely rare, limited 'Rex Edition' Nikon D500. The cosmetic alterations were provided by a customer's German Shepherd Rex, who got ahold of the camera within a day of its purchase.
Adobe says that many of its users have been relying on SkyBox for VR editing and it therefore made sense to make the plug-ins available to all subscribers through Creative Cloud.
The Pictar grip provides a number of customizable physical controls for your iPhone camera, but at its price point we would like to see better materials and build quality.