Nikon Coolpix 5200 Review
Operation and controls
In the past Nikon has been berated for unfriendly, over-complex operation on even its most basic 'point and shoot' models. The latest cameras are a marked improvement on earlier generations, and the Coolpix 5200 has perhaps the most user-friendly interface (which it shares with the Coolpix 3200 and 4200 models) yet seen on a Nikon, though it is not without its own annoying foibles. Control layout, however, is exemplary, with the majority of the most important controls falling easily to hand, and none of the fancy joysticks, tiny buttons or other irritations that commonly plague ultra compact models. Rather than trying to outdo the latest miniature cellphones in complexity and finger gymnastics the emphasis here is on function, meaning the Coolpix 5200 may not look as space-age as some of its competitors, but it's a good deal more practical.
Rear of camera
The majority of the 5200's main controls are found on the rear of the camera, with all the most commonly accessed photographic controls (flash mode, AE compensation, macro mode and self-timer) grouped together within thumb's reach directly below the shutter release. Below the LCD screen are three buttons - one switches to and from playback mode, one is used to delete images, in the middle is the main menu button (for activating on-screen menus). If you press and hold down the play button when the camera is turned off it powers up directly into play mode, without extending the lens (though since it takes nearly as long as turning it on in record mode and switching, there seems little point...)
Top of camera
Display and menus
|This is a typical record mode live view with basic information displayed around the edge of the screen (you can turn most of this off if you wish).||Half-press the shutter release and the camera will calculate exposure (AE) and focus (AF) indicating the AF area used, and warning if there is a possibility of camera shake (exposure information is not shown).|
|The 5200 normally automatically selects one of five focus points, but you can manually select an off-center focus point yourself from 99 positions within the central 60% of the frame.||The only flaw in the 5200's otherwise excellent user interface is the unnecessarily complicated method used for the basic photographic controls (flash, macro etc) that have their own buttons. Press the flash button and, rather than the usual cycling through options with each press, a small menu appears on-screen. You then have to use the arrow keys to change the setting, then press the enter button to confirm the change. That's three button presses just to turn on the macro mode - or turn it off again. Why? Who knows.|
|Pressing the menu button in standard (auto) record mode brings up a five page menu system offering control over image quality/size, metering mode, white balance, burst mode, image parameters (sharpness, contrast, saturation), focus mode and best shot selector, bracketing and noise reduction.||Turning the mode dial to scene and pressing the menu button allows you to select one of 11 scene modes, including panorama assist mode, which shows a ghosted portion of the last picture taken overlaid on the preview image. The only other thing you can change in scene mode is the image quality and size.|
|The four 'scene-assist' modes - first seen on the Coolpix 3200 - take the hand-holding concept even further. Each offers several basic alternatives.||In scene-assist mode (the shot above shows the portrait assist mode) framing guides appear. These are not only used to make sure you frame correctly, but also to set the focus and AE points.|
|Here's a typical screen from playback mode - much like every other Coolpix camera for the last few years. You can turn this information off using the setup menu||Pressing the right zoom key lets you enlarge images up to 6x for a closer look. The left zoom key brings up thumbnails - one press gives you 4 (2x2), a second press gives you 9 (3x3).|
|Press the enter key in playback mode and you can see more information - including a histogram - and the settings used. Unfortunately you'll have to open the files on your PC and examine the EXIF data if you want any exposure information.||Pressing the menu button in the playback mode brings up three pages of options covering printing, viewing slide shows, deleting/protecting, resizing and copying from the internal memory to the SD card.|
|Hot Air Balloons Over Bagan by User9320321874|
|Yellow Warbler by LeeS|
from A Big Year - birds
|Waiting for the Parade by tcoker1103|
from - La Vida Loca - (Black and White Street Photography+ A Border)
Peak Design's 'consider every detail' approach shines in the Everyday Backpack. While expensive, it's one of the best options out there for a photographer who needs to pack a lot of stuff in addition to gear.
If you're thinking of using Canon's sports glass on the Sony a9, think again. The ultra-fast camera slows way down when you attach off-brand glass.
The Polish town of Katowice is not known as an area of beauty, but as all photographers know, that doesn't mean that beauty can't be found if you know where to look. Mariusz Pietranek used a drone to look down on the colorful sedimentation tanks at an ironworks.
New York Times video journalist Ben Solomon spent a harrowing three weeks accompanying Iraqi Major Sajjad al-Hour as he and his men fought to retake Mosul from I.S. forces.
The 3D VR camera launched through a crowdfunding campaign in 2015 goes on sale beginning June 26.
Noctilucent clouds, a crescent moon and Venus were visible in the pre-dawn sky over Budapest yesterday. Photographer György Soponyai captured NASA's astronomy picture of the day.
Squirming pets won't sit still for photos? A Kickstarter campaign is looking to help.
Find out how Chris Burkard shifted from editorial photography to his true passions: landscapes, conservation and, of course, surfing.
The updated EyeEm app scans your camera roll and picks images that are composed particularly well, have the best quality, or highest chance of selling on EyeEm Market.
It's three years old but still a solid option for a Micro Four Thirds shooter looking for a high-quality, fast, wide-angle prime. Take a look at how we got along with it.
Tamron has announced the longest all-in-one zoom lens currently available, the 18-400mm F3.5-6.3 Di II VC HLD. Designed for Canon and Nikon crop-sensor cameras, the lens will be available in July.
When you're ready to step-up to full-frame from an entry-level or midrange camera, the choices can be overwhelming. Find out which models came out on top in our $1200-2000 enthusiast ILC roundup.
Just a guy wearing a VR headset, smashing invisible Goombas in Central Park.
NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter captured this gorgeous aerial photo of the Martian landscape. And if you look really close, you can actually see the Mars Curiosity rover in the very middle.
The city of Laguna Beach, California has provided some clarification around the kinds of photography permits it offers.
Later this year, a VR180 camera will be Joining Yi's Halo and 360 VR cameras, which will offer stereo 3D capture, yet be as easy to use and compact as a 2D camera.
Caltech researchers have developed an 'optical phased array' chip that uses time delays instead of a lens to focus the incoming light.
Pricing and shipping have finally been revealed for two highly anticipated lenses from Sigma, announced in February.
These macro photos of clouds of paint billowing through clear water might look like high-quality CGI, but they're real photographs. And photographer Alberto Seveso told us how they were made.
Facebook is testing a feature that prevents people from saving, sharing, or even taking a screenshot of your profile picture.
We've reshot the Sony a9 in our studio. The short story: it's sharper! The long story... well you can read it all here.
The collection will be officially launched during the Europeana Transcribathon Campus Berlin 2017 crowdsourcing event which will be held on 22 and 23 June at the Berlin State Library.
Light gives us some insight into the preparations for the launch of the pre-order shipments of its much anticipated L16 multi-lens camera.
OnePlus co-founder Carl Pei has confirmed in a tweet that the second lens on the back of the OnePlus 5 uses a 1.6x optical zoom and that digital zoom is used to reach the claimed 2x zoom factor.
Fujifilm recently unveiled the second in its series of affordable cine lenses, the MK50-135mm T2.9. We got our hands on it for a couple days and took it for a spin.
Leica's first attempt at an M-series digital rangefinder was rough around the edges, but set a pattern for all of the cameras that came after it. In this week's Throwback Thursday article, Barney remembers the M8.
No stranger to extreme situations, legendary climber and filmmaker Jimmy Chin talks to Outside Magazine about his career, and the challenge of filming Alex Honnold's rope-free solo climb of El Capitain.
A company backed by Android co-founder Andy Rubin is attempting to make video conferencing less terrible.
Rangefinder magazine asked five professional portrait and wedding photographers about posting on Instagram; no surprise, they got five different answers.
This captivating stop motion film was created by stripping away one layer of wood at a time. It's hard to look away.