is showcasing three recently introduced 3x optical zoom-Nikkor digital cameras — the Nikon Coolpix 2100, Nikon Coolpix 3100 and the Nikon Coolpix SQ — this week.
The consumer cameras are the first to utilize Nikon’s new One-Touch Red-Eye Fix, which is built into the NikonView 6 software, and instantly fixes red-eye within most typical red-eye digital photos with a simple click on the computer.
The Coolpix 2100 offers 2.0 effective megapixels while the Nikon Coolpix 3100 incorporates a 3.2 effective megapixel CCD. With a maximum resolution of 1600×1200, the Coolpix 2100 can print pictures at sizes of up to 8 by 10 inches. The Coolpix 3100 produces a maximum resolution of 2048×1536 and will make larger prints of up to 11 by 14-inches. The Coolpix 2100 has a zoom range of 36-108mm while the Nikon Coolpix 3100 features a 38-115mm lens (both 35mm equivalents).
Both have 14 Scene Modes and Nikon’s Scene Assist, two features designed to simply the taking of portrait, landscape, sports, night, beach, snow, sunset, dawn/dusk, party, museum, fireworks, close-up, copy, and backlight photos. In addition to Scene Modes, the Nikon Coolpix 2100 and Nikon Coolpix 3100 can imprint the date and time on its digital images and prints.
Digital images can also be viewed as a slide show while still in the camera. Both cameras can also display back onto a TV. And both allow you to frame a shot within the optical viewfinder or use the 1.6-inch LCD display (1.5-inches on the Coolpix 3100). The cameras’ Macro Shooting Mode can take pictures from as close as 1.6 inches. Special effects such as a halo effect, black and white, and sepia tones can be added to images in the camera and then saved or e-mailed to others.
Nikon has also enhanced its Movie Mode. The Nikon Coolpix 3100 can record up to 40 seconds of QuickTime video (at 15 frames per second) in Movie Mode (320×240) and 20 seconds in TV Movie (640×480) format. The Nikon Coolpix 2100 can shoot 15 seconds and 7 seconds, respectively. Movies can be shot in color, black and white, and sepia tone (at five frames per second).
Meanwhile, the new Coolpix SQ is a somewhat different camera for Nikon. It sports a 3.1-megapixel CCD, 3x Optical Zoom-Nikkor lens and swiveling body design, which allows the lens path to remain in a straight line, using original light without the use of prisms.
The camera connects to the computer through Nikon’s Cool-Station Power Base, a system included with the camera that not only transfers images to the desktop or the Web, but also charges battery in-camera and can charge a spare.
The US$249.95 Coolpix 2100 and $349.95 Coolpix 3100 ship with the NikonView 6 software CD-ROM, wrist strap, USB cable, video cable, a Lexar 16 MB “Speed Rated” Starter Memory Card and a CR-V3 lithium battery. A Coolpix rechargeable NI-MH (Nickel Metal Hydride) battery and Quick Charger kit is also available separately. Both are available now, as is the Nikon Coolpix SQ, which costs $499.95.
Additionally, at Macworld CreativePro Conference & Expo, Nikon announced it was shipping the $799.95 5.1-megapixel Coolpix 5400. The camera produces images at sizes of up to 2,592 x 1,944 pixels for prints beyond 16 x 20 inches. With the camera’s Continuous Shooting Mode, it will fire seven full-sized images at three frames per second. Additionally, there’s a new five-shot buffer mode, with 64 MB buffer, that lets you capture the last five images of a moment.
The Coolpix 5400 offers a range of shutter speeds from 1/4,000 second up to 10 minutes. You can choose from Programmed Auto (P), Shutter-Priority Auto (S), Aperture-Priority Auto (A) or full Manual (M) exposure shooting modes. The camera’s ISO ranges from 50 to 400, with noise reduction options. The camera sports a 4x Zoom-Nikkor ED optics lenses, which has Extra-Low Dispersion (ED) glass and a zoom range of 28-116mm (35mm equivalent).
The Nikon camera offers 256-Segment Matrix Metering; plus, you can choose Center-Weighted, Spot and Spot Autofocus metering. The Nikon Coolpix 5400 is capable of shooting subjects as close as 0.4 inches. “Ultra Macro” is supported by the Best Shot Selector (BSS) feature, which automatically chooses the sharpest of three images.
Depending on whether you want the best Highlight, Shadow or Histogram detail, you can choose one using the appropriate AE-BSS setting. The camera will automatically choose the best relative exposure from a series of shots based on user-selected choice. The Coolpix 5400’s 7 Mode Flash includes Rear Curtain Sync and Repeating Flash Modes. You can attach an additional Speedlight to the built-in hot-shoe to utilize Nikon’s wireless Speedlight system.
The Coolpix 5400’s fully-articulating LCD lets you shoot at just about any angle. It’s also optimized for easy viewing in bright sunlight. The Nikon camera is compatible with Coolpix accessory lenses including the 1.5x ED glass teleconverter, the 0.8x Wide Angle Adapter, and the new Fisheye converter, as well as the Slide Copy Adapter for copying slides.
The camera has a command dial based on the Nikon D100 design. Nikon has also incorporated 15 Scene Modes into the Coolpix 5400 to allow for point-and-shoot operation of the camera.
The camera’s enhanced Movie Mode can record up to 180 seconds of QuickTime video (at 15 frames per second) in Movie (320 x 240) Mode and 70 seconds in TV Movie (640 x 480) format with audio. With the optional AC adapter, the Coolpix can handle time-lapse movie sequences, shared as QuickTime movies, by capturing motion JPEG files showing slow-moving objects or events over a long duration such as a sunrise to sunset or a flower blooming.
The Coolpix 5400 features the latest version of NikonView 6, complete with One-Touch Red-Eye Fix software, as well as bundled third-party software. The Nikon camera comes with a shoulder strap, USB cable, video cable, a Lexar 16MB Memory Card, and a Li-Ion rechargeable battery and quick charger.