by Rob Williams on July 20, 2006 in Digital Cameras
If you are looking to spend a little extra money for a camera that provides many features and great image quality, you will want to take a look at the P3. It’s capable of 8.1 megapixel images that are actually quite clear at full resolution. In the arsenal is also VGA video quality, vibration reduction and more.
Here are a couple select shots from previous reviews taken with the P3.
In the end, I am very pleased with the performance of the P3. Out of the three Nikons I have tested, this is by far the best due to the great image/video quality. It’s also more expensive than the previous ones though, so this is kind of expected. The P3 currently retails for around $375US, which is not too shabby for what you get. However, bare in mind that if you wish to use the WiFi capability, you will need to purchase also the PD-10 WiFi printer adapter, which can cost up to $50. Nikon also offers the P4, which is essentially the P3 but without this WiFi capability. It currently seems to retail for -more- than the P3, so you may as well just get the P3 and be done with it.
As evidenced in our pictures, the camera does a great job of retaining the quality even at higher resolutions. At full blown resolutions such as 3624*2448, you expect some dithering to occur, especially with sub $500 models. However, the P3 did a great job… I walked away impressed.
If you are the type of person who enjoys taking small video clips, you will not be disappointed here. The biggest downside would be the fact that at the highest setting, the video files turn out to be 1.4MB per second. That can add up fast, and can eat up the memory on your 256MB/512MB card very quickly. Of course the standard 320*240 video resolution is there also though, so it’s not like you are left without a choice.
I also enjoyed the intuitive menu system on the camera. Having the main menu as a separate icon on the dial worked out well. Throughout all of these menus, this camera really does give you a lot of control over your images, so we have a winner here.
The P3 is a great camera whether you are a beginner or intermediate photographer. There are many options at your disposal and the specs are sure to keep you happy. Such features as the vibration reduction, WiFi connectivity, 8MP images and great battery life make the $400 price tag easier to stomach. I am awarding the Coolpix P3 a well deserved 9 out of 10.
- Great picture quality at 8MP
- VGA video quality
- Many options at your disposal
- Great battery life (Approx 150 images at 3624*2448 resolution and three 1 minute videos)
- WiFi capable if you can use it
- Slow turn-on speed
- Only a 3.5x Optical Zoom
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