Nikon Coolpix L340 Review

December 14, 2015 | Amy Davies | Rating star Rating star Rating star


The Nikon Coolpix L340 is a new bridge camera which features a 28x optical zoom, which gives you an equivalent of 22.5-630mm in 35mm terms. There’s also a 56x Dynamic Fine Zoom available, which is a type of digital zoom. Inside the L340 is a 20.4 million pixel CCD sensor. Other specifications include 720p video recording, High Performance VR (Vibration Reduction), a variety of automatic and scene shooting modes and a three-inch 460k-dot LCD screen. The Nikon Coolpix L340 uses AA batteries, with a quoted battery life of 370 shots when using alkaline batteries, or 960 shots when using lithium batteries. In terms of pricing, the L340 compares relatively closely with the Canon PowerShot SX410 HS, although the latter has a longer focal length range, at 40x. The Nikon Coolpix L340 costs around £125 / $149.

Ease of Use

The Nikon Coolpix L340 is a middling-size bridge camera. Something like the Canon PowerShot SX410 HS is smaller, but then others still, such as the Canon SX60, or Nikon’s own P610 are much bigger.

Following a classic simple bridge camera design, the L340 has a pretty pronounced grip which is textured for extra purchase - the dots on the textured surface make it feel pretty secure in the hand. On the back of the camera is a small thumb rest which also helps to make the camera sit snugly in your hand. The rest of the camera doesn’t have any kind of special coating on the chassis.

As quite a basic model, there aren’t too many buttons or dials to get acquainted with on this camera. On the top of the Nikon Coolpix L340 you’ll find the on/off switch, the shutter release button and the camera’s microphone (for use when recording video). Around the shutter release there’s a zoom switch marked T(zoom) and W (wide). Using the switch feels quite fluid and the lens will stop extending just for a split second before entering into the Dynamic Fine Zoom - the zoom display on screen will also change colour, allowing you to keep an eye on which type of zoom you’re using.

Also on top of the Nikon Coolpix L340 is the flash. A button just to the side of the flash needs to be pushed to release the pop-up flash. You need to push it back into place to switch off the flash. Moving to the back of the camera, just near the thumb rest is a dedicated video record button. It’s found in a sort of recession into the camera, so it’d be pretty difficult to accidentally knock the record button on and make erroneous videos.

Nikon Coolpix L340
Front of the Nikon Coolpix L340

A button marked with “Scene” can be pressed to choose between the different shooting modes the Nikon Coolpix L340 offers. There aren’t a huge amount to choose between, but you have Scene Auto Selector - where the camera will choose the most appropriate scene settings for you - Scene selection, where you can choose between options such as Portrait, Landscape, Sports and so on for yourself - Digital Filters - such as Cyanotype, High Contrast Monochrome and so on - Smart Portrait and Auto Mode.

The last of these modes, called “Auto”, gives you a small amount of control over some shooting settings when you enter the main menu, such as White Balance, ISO Sensitivity and AF Area Mode. You can’t alter things such as aperture, shutter speed, autofocus point, and so on, and you can only shoot in JPEG (there’s no raw format shooting).

Other buttons on the back of the Nikon Coolpix L340 are a playback button for looking through your shot images, a Menu button for accessing the main menu and a delete button. There’s also a four way navigational pad, with an OK button in the centre. The directional keys can be used when you’re navigating through menus, with confirmation selected using the OK button. Each of the directional keys also has an assigned function to it as well. The left key accesses self-timer, the up button is used for flash modes (when the flash is raised), the right button allows you to alter exposure compensation, while the down key accesses macro focusing (if you’re in Auto mode only). If you can’t make a change, for instance if the flash is not raised, then a button will do nothing when you press it.

Nikon Coolpix L340
Rear of the Nikon Coolpix L340

The main menu is fairly sensibly arranged, with the amount of options changing depending on what shooting mode you’re in. You’ll find the most when in Auto mode. It’s also split into three different sections, for still images, video and for general settings such as setting the date and time, sound settings and so on.

When viewing images in playback, the menu will give you some options which include creating a slide show, rotating your image and so on. You can also apply a digital filters to shots you’ve already taken. Some of the options here are not available in the digital filter shooting mode, such as Cross Process, so it’s worth exploring this option if you’re particularly keen to add a creative look to your images.

You’ll find the memory card and battery compartment on the underside of the Nikon Coolpix L340. If you’re mounting the camera to a tripod, you won’t be able to access the memory card, which can be a little annoying. The camera takes AA batteries - some people love these, others hate them. On the positive side, it means that should it run out, finding replacements in shops across the world is usually pretty easy. On the other hand, you’ll either need to be spending out on new sets of batteries every time they run out, or invest in some rechargeable AA batteries which are more expensive to begin with.

Nikon Coolpix L340
Top of the Nikon Coolpix L340

There’s no viewfinder for the Nikon Coolpix L340, so instead you’ll need to rely solely on the screen. Although it doesn’t offer a particularly high resolution (at 460k dots), it’s pretty bright and clear. If the sun is particularly strong you may struggle to see it, but it probably would have increased the price of the whole camera to have a tilting or articulating screen. The same goes for making it a touch sensitive device.

Shot-to-shot times for the Nikon Coolpix L340 are a little slow, even when using a Class 10 SD memory card. You can also be left hanging around for a couple of seconds while the camera catches up if you want to make any changes to settings, such as choosing a different filter. The camera will display an annoying “Please wait for the camera to finish recording” message if you try to change it too quickly for the camera.

Focusing also has its frustrations. In good light, and for mid to distant subjects, it’s reasonably quick, but as soon as the light drops, it takes much longer to focus. If you’re shooting in Scene Auto Selector, it can struggle with identifying a macro subject and will refuse to focus for the first few attempts, usually getting it by the time you’ve half pressed the shutter three or four times.

Image Quality

All of the sample images in this review were taken using the 20 megapixel Fine JPEG setting, which gives an average image size of around 6Mb.

If you think you’re only going to be using the Nikon Coolpix L340 in bright sunlight (such as while on holiday), then it might make a good option. However, as soon as light levels drop - even for slightly gloomy and overcast days - then image quality is less than ideal.

Colours directly from the L340 in good light are nicely saturated, with a decent amount of vibrance. When shooting in lower light, image smoothing gives many shots a painterly effect, which has an effect to dampen the more vibrant colours in a shot.

Again, in bright light, the overall impression of detail is good when looking at images at A4 or below. However, once you start shooting from around ISO 400, a loss of detail can be seen in most shots. Another problem is that even with Vibration Reduction activated, it can be difficult to shoot handheld and get a sharp image when using middle-range ISO speeds (400-800) if the light is a little low. To get around this, you can shoot at ISO 1600, but then the amount of image smoothing on display is detrimental. On the plus side, due to the amount of shooting that’s going on, images don’t appear particularly noisy at high ISO speeds.

It’s not all bad news though - most of the time, the Nikon Coolpix L340’s automatic metering system does a decent job of producing pleasing exposures, with little need to dial in exposure compensation. Automatic white  balance also copes well with artificial light to produce pretty accurate colours.

It would be nice to see a little more creative control, i.e. the ability to change aperture or shutter speed, but the intended target audience is somebody who isn’t particularly advanced so it’s understandable why Nikon has chosen not to include this ability on the camera.

Images taken at the far end of the telephoto optic (28x) show a good level of detail on a par with those taken at the wide angle end of the lens. Images taken at focal lengths in between also have a good level of detail with little distortion. Again, this is when shooting in bright daylight. You can use the digital zoom, which basically crops into the image, to get closer to a subject. It’s useful if you’re desperate to get closer to the subject, but there’s a noticeable loss in quality when compared with images taken using the optical zoom.


The Nikon Coolpix L340 has 6 sensitivity settings ranging from ISO 80 to ISO 1600 at full resolution.

ISO 80 (100% Crop)

ISO 100 (100% Crop)

iso80.jpg iso100.jpg

ISO 200 (100% Crop)

ISO 400 (100% Crop)

iso200.jpg iso400.jpg

ISO 800 (100% Crop)

ISO 1600 (100% Crop)

iso800.jpg iso1600.jpg

Focal Range

The L340’s 28x zoom lens achieves a maximum wide-angle focal length equivalent to 22.5mm, and is capable of a telephoto reach of 585mm (in 35mm-camera terms).



focal_range1.jpg focal_range2.jpg


Here are two 100% crops - the right-hand image has had some sharpening applied in Photoshop. The out-of-the camera images from the Nikon Coolpix L340 are slightly soft at the default sharpening setting and benefit from some further sharpening in a program like Adobe Photoshop. You can alternatively change the in-camera sharpening level to suit your tastes.

Original (100% Crop)

Sharpened (100% Crop)

sharpen1.jpg sharpen1a.jpg
sharpen2.jpg sharpen2a.jpg

Chromatic Aberrations

Given the range of the zoom lens, the Nikon Coolpix L340 shows some purple fringing, with limited effects in areas of high contrast as shown in the examples below.

Chromatic Aberrations 1 (100% Crop)

Chromatic Aberrations 2 (100% Crop)

chromatic1.jpg chromatic2.jpg


The L340’s lens will focus as close as 1cm from a subject, however depth of field becomes very shallow at this extremely close distance.


Macro (100% Crop)

macro1.jpg macro1a.jpg


The pop-up flash on the L340 has four settings: Auto, Auto with red-eye reduction, Fill flash & Slow sync. Shooting a white surface from a distance of 1.5m, the flash provides even coverage with the lens zoomed in, though some vignetting is visible in the wide-angle shot.

Whether the flash is set to standard Auto mode – or Auto with red-eye reduction – the camera successfully avoids any trace of red-eye.

Flash Off - Wide Angle (22.5mm)

Flash On - Wide Angle (22.5mm)

ISO 64 ISO 64

Flash Off - Telephoto (585mm)

Flash On - Telephoto (585mm)

ISO 64 ISO 64

And here are a couple of portrait shots. As you can see, neither the Fill Flash or the Auto with Red-eye reduction options caused any amount of red-eye.

Flash On

Flash On (100% Crop)
flash_on.jpg flash_on1.jpg

Red Eye Reduction

Red Eye Reduction (100% Crop)

flash_redeye.jpg flash_redeye1.jpg


One of the L340’s shooting modes is called Night landscape, which produces results such as this. You can expect almost identical results by simply leaving the camera in Smart Auto mode though.

Night Night (100% Crop)
night1.jpg night1a.jpg

Sample Images

This is a selection of sample images from the Nikon Coolpix L340 camera, which were all taken using the 20 megapixel Fine JPEG setting. The thumbnails below link to the full-sized versions, which have not been altered in any way.

Sample Movie & Video

This is a sample movie at the highest quality setting of 1280x720 pixels at 30 frames per second. Please note that this 18 second movie is 21.6Mb in size.

Product Images

Nikon Coolpix L340

Front of the Nikon Coolpix L340

Nikon Coolpix L340

Front of the Nikon Coolpix L340 / Lens Extended

Nikon Coolpix L340

Front of the Nikon Coolpix L340 / Pop-up Flash

Nikon Coolpix L340

Side of the Nikon Coolpix L340

Nikon Coolpix L340

Side of the Nikon Coolpix L340

Nikon Coolpix L340

Rear of the Nikon Coolpix L340 / Image Displayed

Nikon Coolpix L340

Rear of the Nikon Coolpix L340 / Turned On

Nikon Coolpix L340

Rear of the Nikon Coolpix L340 / Scene Menu

Nikon Coolpix L340

Rear of the Nikon Coolpix L340 / Main Menu


Nikon Coolpix L340

Top of the Nikon Coolpix L340

Nikon Coolpix L340

Bottom of the Nikon Coolpix L340

Nikon Coolpix L340

Side of the Nikon Coolpix L340

Nikon Coolpix L340
Side of the Nikon Coolpix L340
Nikon Coolpix L340
Side of the Nikon Coolpix L340
Nikon Coolpix L340
Side of the Nikon Coolpix L340
Nikon Coolpix L340
Side of the Nikon Coolpix L340
Nikon Coolpix L340
Front of the Nikon Coolpix L340
Nikon Coolpix L340
Front of the Nikon Coolpix L340


The Nikon Coolpix L340's most appealing feature is its 28x optical zoom, and possibly its low, bargain price. For under £120 you get a camera which is capable of taking some good shots, but it relies heavily on you only taking those shots in bright light.

If it’s something you’re thinking about for your holiday camera and you think it’s likely you’ll mostly be shooting sunny landscapes and so on, it’s a decent option if you’re on a budget and the optical zoom appeals to you. However, if you’re looking for something to be a flexible all-rounder, it’s reasonably likely that you will be disappointed by some of the shots from the L340.

When photographing in low(ish) light, i.e. the fading light on a gloomy day, images tend to lack detail and have a painterly effect. Vibration Reduction doesn’t seem to help too much with hand held shooting at middle-range ISOs, so at times you’ll be forced to use a higher ISO which results in lower quality images.

It’s also not the camera for you if you’re looking for something a little more advanced. There’s no semi-automatic, or even Program modes, and while you can change certain settings such as ISO and White Balance in ‘Auto’ mode, some will be left frustrated by the lack of ability to change aperture or shutter speed.

Many of the other specifications of the Nikon Coolpix L340 are also pretty basic. The screen is fairly low resolution by modern standards, it can only shoot at 720p HD for video, and there’s no inbuilt Wi-Fi. On a more positive note, those who like the feel of a bigger camera, with a deep grip and fairly large buttons, should find this a reasonably enjoyable camera to use.

Using AA batteries is pretty divisive, and you may fall into one camp or the other. It’s arguable that using this type of battery means you can pop into any convenience shop in the world and pick up a new set - handy if you forget your charger or don’t have access to a plug socket. On the other hand, it means an extra pay out for batteries, whether that’s a one off for rechargeable ones, or otherwise.

Although the Nikon Coolpix L340 is cheap, there are other cameras on the market, which are similarly priced, that offer a longer focal length zoom. 28x was once groundbreaking, but when other cameras offer 40, 50 and 60x as standard, it’s starting to look a little limited. Still, it offers a good degree of flexibility for most shooting scenarios.

Considering that the Nikon Coolpix L340 has only just been released, it’s starting price of £115 will probably go down - once it drops below the £100 mark, it should become even more appealing for those looking for a cheap holiday camera.

3 stars

Ratings (out of 5)
Design 3.5
Features 2.5
Ease-of-use 4
Image quality 2.5
Value for money 3.5

Main Rivals

Listed below are some of the rivals of the Nikon Coolpix L340.

Canon PowerShot SX510 HS

The Canon PowerShot SX510 HS is a small super-zoom camera with a 30x zoom lens. The Canon SX510 also offers 12 megapixels, a 3-inch LCD screen, wi-fi and GPS connectivity, full manual controls and 1080p HD movies. Read our in-depth Canon PowerShot SX510 HS review now...

Fujifilm FinePix S4800

The new Fujifilm FinePix S4800 is an affordable super-zoom camera that boasts a 30x zoom lens. Other standout features include a 16 megapixel sensor, a 3 inch LCD screen, manual controls and 720p movies, all for under £150 / $175. Read our in-depth Fujifilm FinePix S4800 review now...

Fujifilm FinePix S9200

The Fujifilm FinePix S9200 is a new bridge camera with a massive 50x, 24-1200mm zoom lens. The Fujifilm S9200 also offers full 1080p movies at 60fps with stereo sound, a 3 inch LCD screen, electronic viewfinder, 10ps burst shooting and a 16 megapixel back-illuminated EXR sensor. Read our Fujifilm FinePix S9200 review now...

Kodak PixPro AZ521

The new Kodak PixPro AZ521 super-zoom camera features a massive 52x zoom lens with a focal range of 24-1248mm. Other highlights of the affordable Kodak AZ521 include a 3 inch LCD screen, full 1080p HD movies, and a 16 megapixel CMOS sensor. Read our in-depth Kodak PixPro AZ521 review now...

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ72

The brand new Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ72 super-zoom camera (also known as the DMC-FZ70) features a massive 60x zoom lens with a focal range of 20-1200mm, the biggest of any camera on the market. Other highlights of the FZ72 / FZ70 include a 3 inch LCD screen, full 1080i HD movies, 9fps burst shooting, P/A/S/M modes, RAW support, a flash hotshoe and a 16.1 megapixel MOS sensor. Read our in-depth Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ72 review now...

Sony Cyber-shot DSC-H400

The Sony Cyber-shot DSC-H400 is a new superzoom compact camera with a incredible 63x zoom lens. The Sony H400 also features a 20 megapixel CCD sensor, 720p HD video with stereo sound, 3-inch screen, electronic viewfinder and a range of manual shooting modes. Read our Sony Cyber-shot DSC-H400 review to find out if it's the right super-zoom camera for you...

Review Roundup

Reviews of the Nikon Coolpix L340 from around the web. »

The Nikon Coolpix L340 is a low-cost superzoom bridge-style camera that updates the L330. Its main selling point is its 28x optical zoom which gives a 35mm-equivalent focal range of 22.5-630mm. Images are captured on a 20.2MP sensor and power comes from four AA batteries. The Nikon Coolpix L340 is available for around £99.
Read the full review »


    • Type

    • Compact digital camera

    • Effective pixels

    • 20.2 million (Image processing may reduce the number of effective pixels.)

    • Image sensor

    • 1/2.3-in. type CCD, Total pixels: approx. 20.48 million

    • Lens

    • NIKKOR lens with 28x optical zoom

    • Focal length

    • 4.0 – 112 mm (angle of view equivalent to that of 22.5 – 630 mm lens in 35 mm [135] format)

    • F-number

    • f/3.1 – 5.9

    • Lens construction

    • 12 elements in 9 groups (1 ED lens element)

    • Magnification

    • Up to 4x (angle of view equivalent to that of approx. 2520 mm lens in 35 mm [135] format)

    • Vibration reduction

    • Lens-shift VR

    • Autofocus

    • Contrast-detect AF

    • Focus range

    • [W]: Approx. 50 cm (1 ft 8 in.) to infinity, [T]: Approx. 1.5 m (5 ft) to infinity, Macro mode: Approx. 1 cm (0.4 in.) (when zoom is set to middle position) to infinity. (All distances measured from center of front surface of lens)

    • AF-area mode

    • Center, face detection, target finding AF

    • Monitor

    • 7.5 cm (3-in.) diagonal, Approx. 460k-dot, TFT LCD with antireflection coating and 5-level brightness adjustment

    • Frame coverage

    • Approx. 99% horizontal and vertical (compared to actual picture)

    • Frame coverage (playback mode)

    • Approx. 100% horizontal and vertical (compared to actual picture)

    • Storage media

    • SD, SDHC, SDXC, Internal memory (approx. 43 MB)

    • File system

    • DCF and Exif 2.3 compliant

    • Storage file formats

    • Still images: JPEG, Movies: MOV (Video: H.264/MPEG-4 AVC, Audio:PCM monaural)

    • Image size (pixels)

    • 20M (High) [5152 x 3864 (Fine)], 20M [5152 x 3864], 10M [3648 x 2736], 4M [2272 x 1704], 2M [1600 x 1200], VGA [640 x 480], 16:9 [5120 x 2880], 1:1 [3864 x 3864]

    • ISO sensitivity

    • ISO 80 – 1600

    • Exposure metering

    • Matrix, center-weighted (digital zoom less than 2x), spot (digital zoom 2x or more)

    • Exposure control

    • Programmed auto exposure and exposure compensation (–2.0 – +2.0 EV in steps of 1/3 EV)

    • Shutter type

    • Mechanical and charge-coupled electronic shutter

    • Shutter speed

    • 1/1500 – 1 s, 4 s (Fireworks show scene mode)

    • Self-timer

    • 10 s

    • Aperture

    • Electronically-controlled ND filter (–3.3 AV) selection

    • Aperture range

    • 2 steps (f/3.1 and f/9.9 [W])

    • Built-in flash

    • Yes

    • Flash range (approx.)

    • [W]: 0.5 – 4.7 m (1 ft 8 in. – 15 ft), [T]: 1.5 – 2.4 m (5 ft – 7 ft 10 in.)

    • Flash control

    • TTL auto flash with monitor preflashes

    • USB

    • Hi-Speed USB, Supports Direct Print (PictBridge), Also used as audio/video output connector (NTSC or PAL can be selected for video output.)

    • Supported languages

    • Arabic, Bengali, Bulgarian, Chinese (Simplified and Traditional), Czech, Danish, Dutch, English, Finnish, French, German, Greek, Hindi, Hungarian, Indonesian, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Marathi, Norwegian, Persian, Polish, Portuguese (European and Brazilian), Romanian, Russian, Serbian, Spanish, Swedish, Tamil, Telugu, Thai, Turkish, Ukrainian, Vietnamese

    • Power sources

    • Four LR6/L40 (AA-size) alkaline batteries, Four FR6/L91 (AA-size) lithium batteries, Four EN-MH2 rechargeable Ni-MH batteries (available separately), AC Adapter EH-67 (available separately)

    • Battery life

    • Approx. 370 shots when using alkaline batteries, Approx. 960 shots when using lithium batteries, Approx. 600 shots when using EN-MH2 batteries

    • Actual battery life for movie recording

    • Approx. 2 h 5 min when using alkaline batteries, Approx. 5 h 40 min when using lithium batteries, Approx. 3 h 40 min when using EN-MH2 batteries

    • Tripod socket

    • 1/4 (ISO 1222)

    • Dimensions (W x H x D)

    • Approx. 111.1 x 76.3 x 83.3 mm (4.4 x 3.1 x 3.3 in.) (excluding projections)

    • Weight

    • Approx. 430 g (15.2 oz) (including batteries and memory card)

    • Operating environment - temperature

    • 0°C – 40°C (32°F – 104°F)

    • Operating environment - humidity

    • 85% or less (no condensation)

    • Supplied accessories

    • LR6/L40 (AA-size) alkaline batteries (x4), Lens Cap LC-CP25 (with cord), USB Cable UC-E16, Camera Strap

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