Nikon Coolpix P90 Review

Digital Cameras with Extended Zoom Lenses

Nikon Coolpix P90 Ease of Use 8
Features 9
Movie Mode 8
Build Quality8
Colours 9
Photo Quality 8
Style 8
Lowlight 8
Macro 9
Value for Money 8
12 Megapixels
24x Zoom
3 inch LCD Screen
114 x 83 x 99 mm


The Nikon Coolpix P90 is an advanced digital camera offering plenty of zoom power. It has 12 megapixels and a 24x, wide angle lens. There are a range of manual exposure controls and a number of other more advanced features that give you control over the final photo.

Why Buy The Nikon Coolpix P90

The lens offers plenty of scope and flexibility for most photo opportunities. Picture quality is good and there is an impressive set of features.

Main Features

LCD Screen:

3 inches
114 x 83 x 99 mm

HD Movies:
Manual Controls:
Memory Cards:

Lithium ion

Image Quality - See Sample Images Below

Outdoor Scenic Shots in Good Light

The Coolpix P90 benefits from the fact the trees are in full bloom and the sky is a pleasant, warm shade of blue. This helps the camera to produce a bright, colourful first test shoot. On the whole the camera handles the strong sunlight well.

This picture shows just how much extra width you are able to squeeze into the shot thanks to the extreme wide angle offered by the Coolpix P90. Sharpness is inline with expectations with a small loss of quality that I normally associate with a wide angle lens.

I realise Nikon are pushing the boundaries with this length of lens, but purple fringing is more noticeable with the Coolpix P90 than with most other super zoom digital cameras. This is the bit where I normally say, but you will only notice this on larger sized prints. The fact is with this camera you may notice purple fringing in very bright conditions even on smaller prints.

Overall the Coolpix P90 can take sharp photos. There is a slight tendency for sharpness to slip as you move towards the edges. Here though you will struggle to notice much of a fall off unless you make large sized prints.


Standard portraits taken outside should not pose any problems at all. You should be able to take sharply focused portraits. The length of the lens can also give you a few creative options when shooting.

With the flash unit popping up away from the lens the chances of red eye appearing in your portrait shots taken using flash is reduced. The light produced is very even and colours remain true.

Noise does start to show in this photo even though the natural lighting available was quite bright. This takes the edge off the definition of the shot.

Macro, Colours and Noise

As I have mentioned with other super zoom cameras the physical size of the lens unit makes it easier to produce lenses capable of taking good quality close up shots. The macro shot I took with the Coolpix P90 is some way above average.

The colours and lighting produced by this camera give photographs a very natural look. This is one area where I feel Nikon digital cameras are very strong.

I found that pictures could show noise quite quickly as higher ISO setting were used. I think it is a case of taking photos in bright conditions where possible and using flash as soon as lighting begins to dip.


I have few complaints about the picture quality offered by the camera. Watch out for purple fringing from time to time. It may need to be cleaned up with a tool such as Photoshop.

See sample images link arrow


The Coolpix P90 looks like a typical super zoom camera. It is based on the design of a Digital SLR and is available in matt black.

Shutter Lag Times

Shutter Lag Rating Par

Single Shot
Five Shots
Single Shot With Flash
Five Shots With Flash
Turn on Time

0.38 seconds
22.23 seconds
0.45 seconds
23.23 seconds
2.76 seconds

Shutter Lag Table link arrow

Ease of Use

Ease of Use - Par This camera picks up a difficult rating owing to the wide range of features it offers. Nikon make it as easy as they can with the menu system being well laid out and easy to read. It will take time to master all the controls the Coolpix P90 has.

Points I Like

Colours - picture quality - features

Where it Could Improve

Purple fringing can be an issue - taking more than one photo at a time can be slow


The Nikon Coolpix P90 offers a cheaper option to the top of the range Canon and Sony models. It does most things well, takes a good quality photo and has an impressive set of features.

Product Shots

Front View

Nikon Coolpix P90 Front View

Back View

Nikon Coolpix P90 Back View

Top View

Nikon Coolpix P90 Top View

Sample Menus

menu 1 menu 2

setup menu 3

Top Rated Cameras in this Category

Panasonic DMC FZ48 Rating 87/100

The Panasonic Lumix DMC FZ48 is very hard to beat. It is up against some stiff competition, but the combination of features, image quality and pricing makes it the outstanding model in its category. When it comes to picture quality it has few weaknesses and its length of lens means it can cope with more or less any photo opportunity.

Read Review: Panasonic DMC FZ48 Review

Fuji Finepix HS30EXR Rating 86/100

The Fuji Finepix HS30EXR does offer a number of differences to rival Super Zoom or Bridge digital cameras. The main difference is the twisting lens barrel, but there are other handling aspects that make it that bit closer to a Digital SLR experience. In terms of features Fuji have packed in just about everything they can think of. Picture quality compares well against rival cameras and shutter response times are also impressive. This makes this camera a very attractive proposition if you are looking for a fully featured camera with a great deal of zoom power.

Read Review: Fuji Finepix HS30EXR Review

Nikon Coolpix L810 Rating 79/100

The Nikon Coolpix L810 offers something different as it gives you the power of an extra long lens, but with the simplicity of a point and shoot digital camera. This helps to make it somewhat cheaper than the more fully featured models with similar zoom power. Picture quality does not match up to the more expensive models in this category, but it is only if you are planning to make extra large prints that you are likely to see much difference between photos taken with this camera and those that give you that bit of extra quality. This camera is a good choice if you are looking for simple operation and a powerful lens.

Read Review: Nikon Coolpix L810 Review

Related Pages

Nikon Coolpix P90 Review Nikon Coolpix P90 Specification Nikon Coolpix P90 Sample Images Nikon Coolpix P90 Features Nikon Coolpix P90 vs Olympus SP-570UZ Nikon Coolpix P90 vs Panasonic Lumix DMC FZ38 Nikon Digital Cameras

Review Date

July 2009

Best Deals

Read a Review

Search By Price

Digital Cameras Under £50
Digital Cameras £50 - £100
Digital Cameras £100 - £150
Digital Cameras £150 - £200
Digital Cameras £200 - £300
Digital Cameras £300 - £500
Digital Cameras £500 - £1000
Digital Cameras Over £1000

Search By Camera Type

Simple and Easy Digital Cameras
Pocket Sized Digital Cameras
Extra Zoom Digital Cameras
Super Zoom Digital Cameras
Advanced Digital Cameras
Waterproof Digital Cameras
Compact System Cameras
Digital SLRs

Search By Camera Brand

Canon Digital Cameras
Fuji Digital Cameras
Nikon Digital Cameras
Olympus Digital Cameras
Panasonic Digital Cameras
Sony Digital Cameras

Buyers Guides

Digital Cameras
Memory Cards
Digital SLRs
Major Features
Shutter Times
Where to Buy

More Guides

News Feeds