Top of camera controls

On the top of the camera you'll find a single sliding mode / power switch and a square shutter release button. First impressions of the sliding mode switch weren't particularly good but after some use you realize how well placed it really is, when you've finished shooting simply pick up the camera with your right hand and your thumb automatically falls to it, a quick push to the left and the camera is powered off.

Rear of camera controls

The Coolpix 2500 is one of the most interactive digital cameras I've used. By this I mean that to change almost any setting you have to refer to the LCD monitor and use the 4-way controller. For example, pressing the flash button does not toggle through flash modes but instead displays the flash menu from which you can select the required flash mode. On screen 'pop-up' menus are shown in cute 'speech bubbles' (see examples below) which appear either just above the button or beside the referring indicator on the screen.

Buttons in record mode

W / T Zoom Controller

The zoom controller is a straight forward single speed type, the buttons which appear to be separate are actually one part which sits on a pivot.
Self Timer

Enables or disables the cameras self-timer (10 seconds):
• On
• Off
DISP Display Mode

Change the LCD monitor display mode:
• On-screen indicators enabled (mode, ISO, exposures etc.)
• On-screen indicators disabled
Recording Mode

Change recording (exposure) mode:
• Automatic (fully automatic, limited menu, limited controls)
• Manual Programmed AE (full menu, full control)
• Movie clips
Flash Mode

Change flash mode:
• Automatic flash
• Flash on & Redeye reduction
• Flash cancel
• Flash on (fill-in in daylight)
SCENE Select Scene Mode

Select scene mode (more detail below):
• Off (normal recording A / M)
• Portrait
• Party / Indoor
• Night Portrait
• Beach / Snow
• Landscape
• Sunset
• Night Landscape
• Museum
• Fireworks Show
• Close Up
• Copy
• Back Light
MENU Enter / Leave record menu

Self explanatory.
Quick Review

Switches between different record mode 'quick review' modes:
• Quarter size review
• Full size review
• Cancel review

Scene modes

Scene exposure mode offers the same number of menu options (camera control) as Auto, that is: Image Quality, Image Size and Exposure Compensation. Other notes are:

  • White balance is set to AUTO or a pre-programmed preset
  • Flash mode can be changed (depends on scene mode, see table below)
  • Some scene modes use an image adjustment (S-curve) to enhance the image
Scene Mode Flash modes Notes (from Coolpix 2500 manual)

• Any Use for portraits.

• Slow Sync with Anti-Redeye Use to capture background details or the effects of candlelight and other indoor lighting.

Night Portrait
• Slow Sync with Anti-Redeye Use when shooting portraits against a backdrop
of night scenery.

• Any Slowest shutter speed 1/60 sec. Use for bright subjects such as snowfields, beaches, and sunlight expanses of water.

• Flash Cancel Use to enhance outlines, colors, and contrast in skyscapes, forests, and other landscape shots.

• Flash Cancel Use to preserve the deep hues seen in sunsets and sunrises.

Night Landscape
• Flash Cancel Use when taking landscape shots a night.

• Flash Cancel Use where a flash is prohibited.

Fireworks Show
• Flash Cancel Use to capture the expanding burst of light from a firework.

Close up
• Flash Cancel Use to capture vivid colors in close-up shots of flowers, insects, and other small objects.

• Any Use to copy text and line drawings from a white board or from a book or other printed matter.

Back Light
• Flash Fill Use when light is coming from behind your subject, throwing their features into shadow.

Buttons in play mode

Thumbnail index

Switches to a thumbnail index view. The first press of the button shows a 2 x 2 (4 image) index, press again for a 3 x 3 (9 image) index.

Magnifies the displayed image in 0.2x steps up to 6.0x. Once in magnify mode you can scroll around the image using the 4-way controller.

Press the up or down arrows on the 4-way controller to browse through images on the CF card.
DISP Display Mode

Change the LCD monitor display mode:
• On-screen indicators enabled (image size, quality, date & time etc.)
• On-screen indicators disable
Delete Image

Confirm image deletion:
• No
• Yes
Auto Transfer

Toggle the transfer flag on the image. A flagged image will be transferred automatically when using Nikon View 5.
MENU Enter / Leave play menu

Self explanatory.
SMALL PIC Small Picture

Pressing the 'Quick Review' button (labelled Small Pic in play mode) allows you to create a 320 x 240 thumbnail image from the currently displayed image. This is designed to be used on the web or for email.