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Nikon Coolpix P5000 Review
Date: April 5, 2007
Nikon Coolpix P5000 with optional
Monday, March 26, 2007 - Here's what I receive
in the box:
- Coolpix P5000
- No Memory Card included, but 23MB of internal
memory [Nikon sent me a Kingston 512MB SD memory
card for the review]
- Neck Strap
- Rechargeable Li-ion Battery EN-EL5 (with end
cap) and Battery Charger MH-61 with Power Cable
- Interface Cables: A/V; USB
- English and French Instruction Manuals: Quick
Start Guide; Nikon Guide to Digital Photography
- Software CDs: PictureProject 1.7
The Nikon Coolpix P5000 is Nikon's return
to the serious amateur category. After years of
marketing point-and-shoot compact cameras, it
has now introduced a model with full exposure
flexibility and features prized by advanced photographers.
As is becoming more and more common now with
digital cameras, the Nikon P5000 includes approx.
21MB of internal flash memory, and so a SD memory
card is not included in the box. At the 10M Fine
image mode, 21MB can store about 4 images. A 512MB
SD card will hold about 101 10M Fine images, and
a 2GB SD Card will hold about 402 10M Fine images.
At 640x480 30fps, you'll be able to store approx.
19 sec. of movie in the 21MB Internal Memory,
approx. 7 min 25 sec. on a 512MB SD Card, or 29
min 27 sec. on a 2GB SD Card. A memory card is
a one time buy, and I would recommend a 2GB SD
Card or as large a memory card as you can afford.
The P5000 also accepts the High Capacity 4GB SD
Included in the box are a Li-ion battery EN-EL5
that can take approx. 200 pictures (CIPA Standard)
and a battery charger MH-61 that will recharge
a new or fully exhausted battery in about 2 hours.
The battery charger is the type with a power cord.
The shutter speed range is from 8-1/2,000 sec.
and you'll be glad to know that the full 8 sec.
is available in PASM modes.
For the P5000, Nikon has wisely opted for a metal
tripod socket, though its placement means that
you won't be able to change battery or memory
card when the camera is on a tripod.
One strange "feature" on my test camera
is that when taking slow shutter speed shots,
the camera makes a low static sound while the
picture is being taken. Likewise, movies have
a static background sound.
A framing grid can be displayed on screen, and
this is quickly becoming a norm in many digital
cameras. I find this grid of horizontal and vertical
lines very helpful in framing and composition
but wish the lines were not that thick and intrusive
[it's bold thick yellow]. When the grid lines are displayed,
no other info displays.
A histogram displays only in Playback (which is OK but lots of
point-and-shoot digital cameras today display
a live histogram). There is no Sepia color mode
available in camera, though you can convert the
picture to Sepia in PictureProject.
In-camera color modes do however include Black-and-white
with electronic monochrome filters for Yellow,
Orange, Red and Green. This is probably more important
and useful for advanced photographers who love
to take B&W pictures than the missing in-camera
Sepia color mode.
Most of the important settings are accessed thru
control buttons. When you do have to go into the
Menu to access other functions, the Menu icons
view summarizes 4 pages of items into one convenient
page of icons.
Nikon PictureProject 1.7
The Nikon PictureProject software is now version
1.7. PictureProject is quite good, allowing the
usual basic image editing: you can remove red-eye
and edit the photo as to brightness, color booster
(for people or nature), sharpness, straighten,
photo effects (B&W, Sepia) and D-Lighting.
A note of caution if you are using Photoshop
[who isn't?] because the two applications do not
seem to like each other's company. I installed
a new copy of PS Elements 5.0 and PictureProject
promptly stopped working. It just hangs trying
to read the first picture. I did edit the picture
using PSE and PP does not seem to be able to read
the picture info. I removed and re-installed PP
a number of times to no avail. Eventually I found
a Readme.rtf file in PP's directory with the following
6. Photoshop file information
If you edit an image file with PictureProject,
which has file information, such as a caption
or keywords added using Adobe Photoshop's File
Information menu, the entered information may
become corrupted and unreadable in Photoshop.
Apparently, the reverse is also true. I moved
the offending picture out of the directory and
PP now works again like a charm. You may or may
not encounter the same problem I did, but if you
do, now you know how to get around it.
D-Lighting increases brightness to the dark areas
of your image. You can choose to apply D-Lighting
in-camera (the camera will select the level) or
in PictureProject (you can select from Low, Normal
or High level).
The VR technology works quite well and also applies
Not only does the Nikon Coolpix P5000
look great and handle well, it also strikes a
good balance between ease of use and richness
of features: it is point-and-shoot easy to use
and also packed-full of practical features advanced
photographers like to have in their digital cameras.