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Nikon CoolPix P6000 review

Ben Pitt
30 Jan 2009
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
293
inc VAT

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Specifications

1/1.7in 13.5-megapixel sensor, 4.0x zoom (28-112mm equivalent), 240g

The P6000, like Canon's G10, is aimed at photography enthusiasts who want something small and light for times when an SLR isn't appropriate.

It looks suitably classy, feels durable and has a rubber handgrip that fits snugly in the hand. A command dial allows for quick adjustment of exposure settings, and a dedicated button opens the My Menu page. You can customise this for quick access to six settings.

Unlike its predecessor the P5100, the P6000 provides manual focus and RAW capture, and the lens is capable of 28mm wide-angle shooting. Performance has improved but not by enough - there's a 2.5-second gap between shots, and 5.5 seconds with the flash. Continuous shooting started at 1.1fps but slowed to 0.3fps after five shots, and wasn't available at all in RAW mode.

This is the first camera we've seen with a GPS receiver, which embeds data into photos for automatic plotting on a map in Picasa, Google Earth and other applications. Despite persevering with the manual's pernickety instructions, we failed to get a satellite position. Another surprising feature is an Ethernet socket. Once we'd established an internet connection, the camera uploaded photos to Nikon's photo-management and sharing site. It's a nice idea but the site is a little awkward and the Ethernet connection seems like a step back from the WiFi interface in other Nikon cameras.

As usual, packing so many pixels into a tiny sensor increases noise more than it does detail. Brightly lit shots at ISO 100 were smooth and sharp but subtle textures were a little vague, suggesting that noise reduction was already working hard. At ISO 400, fine details had largely disappeared, and ISO 800 shots were marred by white speckles that slipped through the noise-reduction processing. Pictures also suffered from erratic colours, with some over-exposed shots and others suffering poor white balance.

Canon's G10 is far from perfect but it's better than the P6000 in almost every respect.

Basic Specifications

Rating**
CCD effective megapixels13.5 megapixels
CCD size1/1.7in
Viewfinderoptical
LCD screen size2.7in
LCD screen resolution230,000 pixels
Optical zoom4.0x
Zoom 35mm equivalent28-112mm
Image stabilisationoptical, sensor shift
Maximum image resolution4,224x3,168
Maximum movie resolution640x480
Movie frame rate at max quality30fps
File formatsJPEG, RAW; AVI (M-JPEG)

Physical

Memory slotSDHC
Mermory supplied48MB internal
Battery type3.7V 1,100mAh Li-ion
Battery Life (tested)260 shots
ConnectivityUSB, AV, Ethernet
Body materialaluminium
AccessoriesUSB and AV cables
Weight240g
Size66x107x42mm

Buying Information

Price£293
Supplierhttp://www.simplyelectronics.net
Detailswww.europe-nikon.com

Camera Controls

Exposure modesprogram, shutter priority, aperture priority, manual
Shutter speed30 to 1/2,000 seconds
Aperture rangef/2.7 to f/7.2
ISO range (at full resolution)64 to 2000
Exposure compensation+/-2 EV
White balanceauto, 5 presets, manual
Additional image controlscontrast, saturation, sharpness, noise reduction, distortion control, dynamic range
Manual focusYes
Closest macro focus2cm
Auto-focus modesmulti, centre, spot, face detect
Metering modesmulti, centre-weighted, centre, spot AF area, face detect
Flashauto, forced, suppressed, slow synchro, red-eye reduction
Drive modessingle, continuous, self-timer, interval, AE bracket