Nikon Coolpix P5100 Review
Based on a production Nikon Coolpix P5000 Firmware version 1.0
Announced just six months after the launch of the P5000, the Nikon P5100 is a gentle re-working of the existing model with a slightly larger, more pixel-dense sensor and hardware-based face-detection. Beyond that, the changes are predominantly cosmetic alterations to the existing model. The camera is Nikon's flagship compact camera, with the 'P' denoting 'performance.' Although it may not visually leap out from a line-up of contemporary compacts, its magnesium alloy body and manual exposure controls belie the unassuming appearance. It aims to offer a greater degree of manual control than the majority of compact cameras and has a strong feature set to help it stand apart. We were actually very impressed with the P5000's image quality and feature set, and only really complained about the sluggish performance. So has Nikon fixed the P5000's Achilles' heel in this update? Lets find out!
Differences compared with P5000
- Faster, hardware-based face-detection, allowing more faces to be identified
- Expeed processing 'concept'
- Continuous flash shooting mode (3 consecutive frames at ~1fps)
- Distortion control to counteract lens distortion
- Improved user interface
- Marginally larger sensor making the lens slightly wider-angle (35mm vs 36mm)
- Fractionally shorter battery life (240, rather than 250 shots, CIPA standard)
- 1:1 aspect ratio shooting mode
- Can add black borders to images
Unlike the names applied to image processors by many of Nikon's rivals, Expeed doesn't specifically refer to any particular technology or set of features. Rather, it is a "digital image-processing concept," so shouldn't be taken to imply any kinship to the D3 and D300 DSLR models that share the name, beyond the the use of similar Nikon algorithms and know how.
- 12 megapixel 1/1.8-inch CCD
- 3.5x Zoom-Nikkor lens
- Lens shift VR (Vibration Reduction)
- ISO 64-1600 (3200 in 5MP mode)
- BSS (Best Shot Selector) identifies and saves the sharpest image automatically from ten sequential shots
- P/A/S/M modes plus 16 scene modes
- Compatibility with system-expanding accessories
- Macro shooting enables shooting from as close as 4cm (1.6 in.)
- SDHC card compatibility
- Approx. 52 MB of internal memory
- Face-priority AF, In-Camera Red-Eye Fix, D-Lighting
- 2.5-in wide viewing angle TFT LCD with anti-reflection coating
Nikon Coolpix P5100 specifications
|Body Material||Metal and plastic|
• 1/1.72 " Type CCD
• 4000 x 3000
• Motion JPEG (AVI) with sound
|File formats||• JPEG Exif V2.2
• Motion JPEG AVI
• 3.5x Zoom-Nikkor (35-123mm equiv.)
|Image stabilization||Lens-shift VR|
|Conversion lenses||Yes (optional)|
|Digital zoom||up to 4x|
|Focus||• Contrast Detection AF
• Infinity lock
|AF area modes||
• Auto (9-area automatic selection)
|AF assist lamp||Yes|
• 30cm (1 ft.) to infinity (∞) [W],
70cm (2 ft. 4 in.) to infinity (∞) [T]
|Metering||• Through-the-lens (TTL) metering
• 256-segment matrix
• Spot AF area
|ISO sensitivity||• Auto (64 - 800)
• ISO 64
• ISO 100
• ISO 200
• ISO 400
• ISO 800
• ISO 1600
• ISO 2000
• ISO 3200 (5MP or lower only)
|Exposure compensation||• -/+ 2EV
• in 1/3 EV steps
• 3 shots
|Shutter speed||1/2000 to 8 s|
|Aperture|| • Six blade iris diaphragm
• 10 (in steps of 1/3 EV)
• Auto shooting mode
|Scene modes||Face-priority AF, Portrait, Landscape, Sports, Night Portrait, Party/Indoor, Beach/Snow, Sunset, Dusk/Dawn, Night Landscape, Close up, Museum, Fireworks show, Copy, Back Light, Panorama Assist, Voice recording|
|Self timer||• 10 or 3 secs
|Image parameters||Normal, Softer, Vivid, More vivid, Portrait, Custom, Black-and-white|
• Range: (W) 0.3 to 8.0m (1 ft. to 26 ft. 3 in.), (T) 0.3 to 4.0m (1 ft. to 13 ft. 1 in.)
• Flash Hot Shoe
• Auto, Auto with red-eye reduction, Anytime flash, Flash cancel, Slow sync., Rear-curtain sync.
|Viewfinder||• Real-image zoom viewfinder
• Approx 80% vertical x 80% horizontal
|LCD monitor||• 2.5-in wide viewing angle TFT LCD with anti-reflection coating
• Approx 97% vertical x 97% horizontal (record mode)
• AV out (NTSC / PAL)
|Print compliance||PictBridge, DCF, DPOF, EXIF print|
|Storage||• SD / SDHC / MMC card (optional)
• Approx 52MB internal memory
|Power||• Rechargeable Li-ion Battery EN-EL5 (supplied)
• AC Adapter EH-62A (optional)
|Weight (No batt)||Approx. 200 g (7.1 oz.) without battery and SD memory card|
|Dimensions||Approx. 98 x 64.5 x 41 mm (3.9 x 2.5 x 1.6 in.) excluding projections|
|Christine by JP Zanotti|
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