Coolpix 5000 9/10. Date Posted 22/08/2002.
I bought this camera, it was a very difficult decision, given that it's
quite expensive. How can a camera really be worth 700 pounds? I can safely
say that after using it for a week, I know I made the right decision!
Several years ago, I owned a Nikon Coolpix 950. It was great, but had
several shortcomings, most notably its battery. Thankfully, with this
Coolpix 5000, Nikon have supplied a Lithium Ion battery. It lasts over
a whole day of shooting (sometimes upto two days, depending on how you
use the LCD). The 5 megapixel resolution is probably the highest available
at the time of review (other than digital SLRs which are 6.1 megapixel,
but cost double the price). As such the picture quality is first rate.
The images produced by this camera are very sharp, and are indistinguishable
from film cameras (provided you don't expand images too much). Even when
you zoom in on images, you can see a considerable amount of detail. The
lense is made by Nikon as well, and has a decent zoom range. The Coolpix
5700 is basically the same camera, but with an improved lens. It's not
quite upto SLR standard but is nevertheless very good for a compact. The
Coolpix 5000 is currently one of the smallest compact 5 megapixel cameras.
However, it is perhaps still a bit big for some people. It just about
fits in my pocket, but I certainly would not call it pocket sized! If
you want a very small camera, you probably need to go elsewhere (and also
settle for a 3 or 4 megapixel camera) at this time.
unlike other manufacturers, Nikon give you the choice of using this camera
both in fully automatic and fully manual settings. The whole point of
digital cameras is that they give you the opportunity to experiment with
different shutter speeds, exposures etc. without wasting lots of film.
There are several different modes, fully automatic, aperture mode (but
with auto shutter), shutter mode (but with auto aperture) or fully automatic
where you choose both aperture and shutter speed. I prefer to run it on
shutter mode most of the time, but eventually once I get the hang of this
camera, I'll put it on fully manual. The automatic mode is relatively
good at guessing shutter speed and aperture, but I find you generally
get better shots if you can carefully select the modes yourself (and this
applies for every camera I've ever used).
can also put the flash on auto, or turn it off. If you prefer to use your
own external flash, this can be fixed on top of the camera, just like
on most SLRs. As for general use of the camera, it is nice to use, but
not quite as easy to use as Sony, so takes a few hours to get used to.
Having said that, as a previous owner of a Nikon digital, the setup was
quite familiar. It's quite simple to change both the size and quality
of shots, without entering the menu system. I found I could store about
12-15 shots on the included 32MB CompactFlash card, in fine mode at maximum
resolution. If you opt for uncompressed mode, you'll only be able to fit
one picture on the card. In any case I bought an additional 64MB card
and I am thinking about getting a Microdrive, so I can take uncompressed
shots as well. I think Nikon are a bit tight, only including a 32MB card!
the above shot you can see the rear of the camera. The LCD is not as bright
as I would have liked, and can be difficult to see in very sunny conditions.
If you prefer you can move the LCD and turn it around to another position.
made a good choice buying this camera, but it's very expensive at the
moment (although it has come down in price since launch) and as such I
cannot give it a 10/10 rating, but it is worth noting it is probably one
of the cheapest 5 megapixel cameras around. Hopefully I'll be able to
review some of it's rivals soon!