Nikon Coolpix P90 Review

Digital Cameras with Extended Zoom Lenses

Picture
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
460g

Overview

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

Megapixels:
Zoom:
LCD Screen:
Dimensions:
Weight:

12
24x
3 inches
114 x 83 x 99 mm
460g

Macro:
HD Movies:
Manual Controls:
Batteries:
Memory Cards:

1cm
No
Yes
Lithium ion
SD/SDHC

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.

Portraits

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.

Summary

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

Style

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

Verdict

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

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Canon Powershot SX40 HS Rating 85/100

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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

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