Nikon Coolpix P6000 Review

Review Date: October 29th 2008
Author: Mark Goldstein

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Page 1
Introduction / Ease of Use
Page 2
Image Quality
Page 3
Sample Images
Page 4
Design
Page 5
Specifications
Page 6
Conclusion

Conclusion


Ratings (out of 5)
Design
4
Features
4.5
Ease-of-Use
4
Image Quality
4.5
Value for Money
3.5

The Coolpix P6000 is Nikon's best attempt yet at a compact camera that's good enough for a pro photographer, but ultimately it has a few serious flaws that means it falls short. In terms of design, the P6000 is a delight to use, with most of the control offered by a consumer DSLR in a more manageable, portable form. Small enough to stow away in a coat pocket, the controls feel evenly spaced and of sufficient size for accessibility and ease of operation, and overall the Nikon P6000's ergonomics feel 'just right'. Sadly, the same can't be said about it's key headline features. GPS functionality is well-implemented, but only works sporadically in urban environments and not all all indoors, and it has a significant drain on battery life unless you keep turning it on and off. LAN connectivity is limited to merely uploading pictures to Nikon's My PictureTown online gallery, and RAW support is plagued by slow processing times and no continuous shooting mode at all. Consequently the most attractive new feature is the most un-heralded, namely the wide-angle, 28-112mm lens, which offers the biggest user benefit.

As with the Canon PowerShot G10 that we reviewed earlier this week, the Nikon Coolpix P6000 similarly suffers from noisy images at relatively slow ISO speeds. The new 13.5 megapixel, 1/1.7 inch, CCD image sensor offers massive 4224 x 3168 pixel wide/high images that can easily be printed up to A3 size and beyond, but it comes at the cost of noisy images at ISO 400 and virtually unusable ISO 800 and 1600 modes. The excellent vibration reduction system helps to ensure that the P6000 can handle most common shooting situations, but don't expect great results when using the camera in very low-light, unless you opt to use the built-in flash or a tripod in conjunction with the slower ISOs. Apart from the noise issue, image quality is very good, with visible but well-controlled chromatic aberrations, excellent night and macro performance, powerful built-in flash, and largely accurate colours using the default Standard Picture Control.

The Nikon Coolpix P6000 is a good camera in its own right, but doesn't quite cut the mustard when compared to its main rivals, the Canon PowerShot G10 and Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX3. There are just too many rough edges, with the noisy images at slow ISO speeds and the infuriating RAW processing times limiting its appeal to the serious enthusiast. Even the price tag of the P6000 can't save it - with an RRP of 429 / $499, we'd rather spend a little more on the G10, or a little less on the LX3.

Page 1
Introduction / Ease of Use
Page 2
Image Quality
Page 3
Sample Images
Page 4
Design
Page 5
Specifications
Page 6
Conclusion

DIWAPhotographyBLOG is a member of the DIWA organisation. Our test results for the Nikon Coolpix P6000 have been submitted to DIWA for comparison with test results for different samples of the same camera model supplied by other DIWA member sites.

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