Nikon Coolpix 5000 Review
Minolta were the first on the five megapixel scene with the DiMAGE 7, closely followed by Sony with the DSC-F707 and Olympus with the E-20. For comparison purposes I have gathered an E-20 and a DSC-F707. Probably the most significant difference between these three cameras is in size and weight, and in the case of the E-20 in price. (Note, we have not deliberately excluded the DiMAGE 7, you should read its review in comparison to the results below).
The table below provides a quick side-by-side comparison of features and specifications between each of the cameras. Items which are notably better than the other two are highlighted in green, those which are notably worse (or not as good) as the other two are highlighted in red.
Features / Specifications comparison
|Better than the competition||Worse than the competition|
For anyone who's confused the highlighting of what I think is 'better'
or 'worse' is my own personal opinion, your milage may vary.
|Nikon Coolpix 5000||Olympus E-20||Sony DSC-F707|
|Street price||US$ 1,000||US$ 1,900||US$ 1,000|
|Body||Metal alloy||Metal alloy||Metal alloy|
|Body design||Compact with flip-out LCD||SLR-like with tilting LCD||Split body, oversized lens|
|Ergonomics||Good, good hand grip||Excellent, just like an SLR||Odd at first but better with time|
|Lens zoom||3x optical, 28 - 85 mm||4x optical, 35 - 140 mm||5x optical, 38 - 190 mm|
|Lens aperture||F2.8 - F4.8||F2.0 - F2.4||F2.0 - F2.4|
|Lens thread||28 / 46 mm with adapter||62 mm||58 mm|
|CCD||2/3" 5.2 megapixel||2/3" 5.2 megapixel||2/3" 5.2 megapixel|
|CCD CFA||C Y G M||G R G B||G R G B|
|Max resolution||2560 x 1920||2560 x 1920||2560 x 1920|
|Aspect ratio||4:3 or 3:2||4:3||4:3 or 3:2|
|1600 x 1200
1280 x 960
1024 x 768
640 x 480
|1792 x 1344
1280 x 960
1024 x 768
640 x 480
|2048 x 1536
1280 x 960
640 x 480
|Image modes||TIFF, JPEG||RAW, TIFF, JPEG||TIFF, JPEG|
|JPEG modes||Fine, Normal, Basic||SHQ, HQ, SQ (programmable)||Fine, Standard|
|Digital Zoom||Up to x4.0 in x0.2 steps||None||Up to x2.0 (smooth steps)|
|Sensitivity||Auto, ISO 100, 200, 400, 800||Auto, ISO 80, 160, 320||Auto, ISO 100, 200, 400|
|AF mode||Single, Continuous||Single||Single|
|AF illumination lamp||No||Yes (IR)||Yes (laser)|
|AF focus areas||5 auto/manual selectable||1||1|
|AF distance||Normal: 50 cm
Macro: 2 cm
|Normal: 60 cm
Macro: 20 cm
|Normal: 50 cm
Macro: 2 cm
|AF / MF confirmation||Yes, clearly visible||None||Magnified during MF|
|Auto bracketing||Yes, 3/5 images, +/-1 EV||Yes, 3 images, +/-1 EV||Yes, 3 images, +/-1 EV|
|WB auto bracket||Yes||No||No|
|WB fine tuning||Yes||No||No|
|WB manual preset||Yes, menu option||Yes, dedicated button||Yes, dedicated button|
|Noise reduction||Yes, menu option||Yes, menu option||Yes, automatic|
C.1-3: P, AP, SP, Man
|Auto, P, AP, SP, Man||Auto, P, AP, SP, Man, 3 scene modes|
|Metering|| 256 segment
Spot AF area
| Digital ESP
| Multi-pattern (49 segment)
|AE Lock||Yes, front AF-L / AE-L button||Yes, button on rear||Yes, button on lens barrel|
|AE compensation||+/-2 EV in 0.3 EV steps||+/-2 EV in 0.3 EV steps||+/-2 EV in 0.3 EV steps|
|Shutter speed||8 - 1/4000 sec (plus Bulb)
(1/4000 sec only @ F2.8)
|60 - 1/640 sec
(up to 1/18000 sec in PS mode)
|30 - 1/1000 sec|
|Shutter priority||14 steps||IS: 31 steps
PS: 39 steps
|Aperture priority||Wide: 10 steps
Tele: 5 steps
|Wide: 16 steps
Tele: 14 steps
|Wide: 13 steps
Tele: 12 steps
|3 fps, max 3 frames
1.5 fps, max 8 frames
|3.6 fps, max 4 frames||3 fps, max 3 frames|
|Record review||Yes, Quick Review button||Yes, double-press display button||Yes, press 4-way controller to the left|
|Settings||Contrast, Saturation, Sharpening||Contrast, Sharpening||Sharpening|
|15 fps - max 60 secs (w audio)||None||16 fps - max 15 secs (w audio)
8 fps unlimited (w audio)
|User memories||3, selectable||1||1|
|Self timer||3 or 10 secs||10 secs or IR remote||10 secs|
|Remote control||Optional wired accessory||Supplied IR remote||Optional wired accessory|
|LCD||1.8" Flip-Out & twist
|Play magnification||Up to 6.0x||Up to 4.0x||Up to 5.0x|
|Flash||Internal||Manual Pop-up||Automatic Pop-up|
|Flash range||3 m (9.8 ft)||8.9 m (28 ft)||5 m (16.4 ft)|
|External flash||Hot-shoe||Hot-shoe||Sync Terminal|
|Misc.||BSS, Clear Image mode||IS/PS mode||NightShot mode|
|Power||Nikon EN-EL1 Lithium-Ion||4 x AA batteries||Sony NP-FM50 Lithium-Ion|
|Battery power||4.8 Wh (2 hrs 32 mins)||7.7 Wh (2 hrs 48 mins)||8.6 Wh (4 hrs 20 mins)|
|AC adapter||Optional||Optional||Supplied (Charger)|
|Storage||Compact Flash Type I or II||Compact Flash Type I or II
|Storage supplied||32 MB||16 MB||16 MB|
|Microdrive supported||Yes, officially||Yes, officially||N/A|
|Weight inc battery||414 g (14.6 oz)||1170 g (2.6 lb)||667 g (1.5 lb)|
|102 x 82 x 68 mm
(4.0 x 3.2 x 2.7 in)
|128 x 103 x 161 mm
(5.1 x 4.1 x 6.3 in)
|120 x 67 x 148 mm
(4.7 x 2.6 x 5.8 in)
|Volume *2||569 cm3||2123 cm3||1190 cm3|
|Startup speed||Average (6 sec)||Average (6 sec)||Fast (2.6 sec)|
|Operation speed||Fast||Slow||Very Fast|
As you can see despite being largely based on the Coolpix 995 engine the 5000 can still hold its ground from a specifications and features point of view. The Coolpix feature set has always been the envy of other manufacturers (who are catching up) and one of the reasons consumers choose a Coolpix over others. Olympus seem to be the odd man out in the comparison above, big, bulky, expensive and relatively slow the E-20 just can't keep up with the lighter, cheaper and better featured Nikon and Sony.
Image Quality Comparison: Outdoors (Boat Scene)
This first comparison was taken from a tripod with as near as possible identical settings for each camera. Options such as White Balance were set to Automatic, as was Sharpening on the Coolpix 5000. Each of the crops shown below the thumbnail are of a 160 x 160 area of the image at 100%. (Note: New review format, all the crops are pasted together as one image - loads quicker).
|Nikon Coolpix 5000||Olympus E-20||Sony DSC-F707|
|ISO 100, F5.2, 1/361 sec||ISO 80, F5.6, 1/200 sec||ISO 100, F5.6, 1/400 sec|
There are several things which stand out about this comparison:
- The Sony DSC-F707 exhibits visibly more resolution, especially for distant objects (clearly a good lens in combination with good image processing)
- The Sony DSC-F707 lens is sharp right up to the edges (unlike the Coolpix 5000)
- The Olympus E-20 has the best white balance closely followed by the Nikon Coolpix 5000
- The Nikon Coolpix 5000 has clipped highlights (turned them into pure white - RGB 255,255,255) which the other cameras have maintained as detail (the Sony DSC-F707 more so than the Olympus E-20)
- Colour balance is quite similar between the three cameras (the Nikon is the only camera which can have its colour saturation adjusted)
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