Nikon Coolpix S4000 Digital Camera Review

Keeping it simple, nice and cheap, was the challenge for Nikon when they
publicly announced Coolpix range photos. Like its little brother Touch
S220, a bestseller as basic and as cute, the S4000 has the benefit over a
wide-angle HD video modes and image editing, and finally it looks just
as cute.


Key Features

  • 12.0 Megapixels for
    stunning prints as large as 16 x 20 inches
  • 4x Wide-angle Zoom-NIKKOR Glass Lens has a versatile zoom range from
    wide 27mm to 108mm telephoto coverage that gets you close to your
    subject while capturing expansive landscapes
  • Beautiful, Bright 3.0-inch High Resolution TOUCH PANEL HVGA
    (460,000-dot) Clear Color Display with anti-glare coating that enables
    easy touch control to all camera functions

    • Sensitive Response
      Touch Panel display enables effortless use of touch panel by ensuring
      sensitive response to even the lightest tapping and touch for smooth
      operation
    • Touch Shutter and Autofocus simply tap the LCD to have the camera
      focus and even shoot the picture.
    • Retouch and Draw functions for quick, convenient in-camera
      enhancements and personalization to any image
  • New HD Movie Record stunning HD (720p) quality movies at 24fps for
    easy playback in camera, on TV or computer
  • 4-way VR Image Stabilization System
    • Electronic VR Image
      Stabilization minimizes the effect of camera shake
    • Motion Detection automatically detects moving subjects and adjusts
      shutter speed and ISO setting to compensate for camera shake and subject
      movement
    • High ISO up to 3200 capability helps give you sharper results when
      shooting in low light or capturing fast-moving subjects.
    • Nikon’s original Best Shot Selector (BSS) automatically takes up to
      10 shots while the shutter is pressed and saves the sharpest image
  • Slim, Stylish, Metal Design in a variety of stunning colors for
    pocketable convenience and individuality
  • Smart Portrait System includes:
    • Smile Timer and Blink Proof
      makes sure you’ll always catch the decisive moment when your subject
      smiles and Blink Proof function shoots two pictures and automatically
      saves the one in which the subject’s eyes remain open.
    • Blink Warning, when activated alerts you that the subject may have
      blinked and allows you to retake the photo.
    • In-Camera Red-Eye Fix automatically fixes, while shooting, most
      instances of red-eye in the camera. You may never see red-eye again
    • Face-Priority AF Nikon’s face-finding technology that automatically
      focuses on up to 12 faces
    • Skin Softening smoothes skin tone at three different levels for
      optimal portraits
  • EXPEED Image Processing ensures high-quality pictures with stunning
    color and sharpness. Nikon’s comprehensive digital imaging processing
    concept incorporates the know-how and technologies accumulated
    throughout our long history of photographic and digital imaging
    development and is custom-tuned for COOLPIX. Applied optimized
    technologies render natural-looking pictures of incredible quality and
    quick response so you won’t miss that special moment
  • Subject Tracking will automatically track a moving subject to ensure
    sharp focus
  • Quick Retouch optimizes contrast and color vividness for beautiful
    images
  • Scene Auto Selector automatically recognizes the scene in your
    picture and adjusts camera setting
  • D-Lighting rescues dark or backlit images by improving brightness
    and detail during playback
  • 16 Scene Modes for optimized shooting in various settings
  • Macro shooting as close as 3.1”
  • 5 Color Options for special filter effects. Choose from: standard
    color, vivid color, black-and-white, sepia and cyanotype
 
 

First good point: for $240, or even just $201 for some online retailers,
it is possible to have quality photos! Compared to recent CDs that we
tested, the Pentax H90 and I-10, and disappointing Kodak Slice, the
Nikon camera is giving the best record. This is particularly evident in a
photograph taken indoors without flash: during the day, the images are
not dirty, rough or speckled, as so often with small sensor compact, but
are rather soft and clean.

Sensitive, except evenings

With its relatively high definition 12-megapixel, yet it was obviously
still a bit sensitive to light indoors. Of course, in the darkness, for
example for interior pictures in the evening, the flash becomes
mandatory and it is unfortunately a very violent whiteness. It blinds as
well as conceals the colors! Note also a very nice wide-angle to make
framing very large. Do not use but a short distance from the subject, on
pain of having a blurry foreground.

 

A very average movie mode

However, the video mode is set well back from what can be found at the
competition, including the compact Panasonic. Indeed, it is not enough
to offer a HD resolution of 720p. We need the focus, lighting, texture
image and fluidity that should also be present. But just as the colors
and sharpness are met significant, both films seem encountered, as to
give the evil eye. Regarding the sound, it is very poor and the videos
give the impression of having been stored in a jar.

From not so intuitive touch

At $240, Nikon does not refer to the most demanding photographers. The
effort was focused on ergonomics, with a touch screen. Its reactivity is
honest, though with more than great for a good smartphone and its
navigation is usable, once you have taken the crease in the menus by
necessity very intuitive. Fairly large and comfortable, however it
suffers from virtual buttons too small and too close to each other,
which often leads them to click the next function. Its very annoying,
especially when trying to enjoy the small photo editor integrated with
menus! Also its too bad because between the booster colors, the light
adjuster and function doodling, there is something fun about the
stereotypes.

 

A perfect finish

Finally, the touchscreen allows mainly saving on the number of buttons
and simplifies the use of the device. Two buttons have been kept,
however, and it welcomes: a shortcut to the mode change (too bad we can
not pass a single stroke of the photo to video and vice versa), another
to read saved files. Its too bad, again, that the tactile navigation is
so difficult and it is the only false note in a finish that easy
crunchy, with its refined colors, chrome shell very feminine and very
smooth lines.

Technical Specification

  • Image Sensor
    Type: CCD
  • Sensor Size: 1/2.3 in.
  • Total Pixels: 12.39 million
  • Effective Pixels: 12.0 million
  • Image Area (pixels):
    • 4000 x 3000(12M)
    • 3264 x2448(8M)
    • 2592 x 1944(5M)
    • 2048 x 1536(3M)
    • 1024 x 768(PC)
    • 640 x 480(VGA)
    • 3968 x 2232(16:9)
  • Vibration Reduction: Electronic VR
  • LCD Monitor Size: 3 in. diagonal
  • LCD Monitor Type: TFT LCD with touch screen control and
    anti-reflection coating
  • LCD Monitor Resolution: 460,000 Dots
  • ISO Sensitivity: ISO 80, 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600, 3200, Auto (auto
    gain ISO 80-1600), Fixed range auto (ISO 80-400, 80-800)
  • Storage Media:
    • SD
    • SDHC
    • Not compatible with Multi Media Cards (MMC).
  • Internal Memory: Approx. 45MB
  • Movie Modes
    • Video file format: AVI Motion JPEG
    • Audio: Mono (WAV)
    • HD: 1280 x 720p / 24fps
    • Standard TV: 640 x 480 / 30fps
    • Small Size: 320 x 240 / 30fps
  • Interface: Hi-speed USB
  • Lens Zoom: 4x
  • Lens Specification: 4.9-19.6mm (35mm [135] format picture angle:
    27-108mm); f/3.2-5.9; Digital zoom: up to 4x (35mm [135] format picture
    angle: 432mm)
  • Focus Range: 50cm (1 ft. 8 in.) to infinity (∞), Macro close-up
    mode: 8 cm (3.2 in.) to infinity (∞)
  • Battery Type: Rechargeable
  • Battery / Batteries: Nikon EN-EL10 Lithium-ion Battery (supplied)
  • AC Adapter:
    • Charging AC Adapter EH-68P
    • EH-62D AC Adapter (optional)
  • Battery Charger: MH-63 Battery Charger (optional)
  • Battery Life (shots per charge): EN-EL10: 190shots
  • Approx. Dimensions:
    • Height: 2.3 in. (56.5mm)
    • Width: 3.8 in. (94.5mm)
    • Depth: 0.8 in. (20.4mm)
  • Approx. Weight: 4.7 oz. (131g) with battery and memory card
  • Optional Accessories: AC Adapter EH-62D, Battery Charger MH-63
  • Supplied Accessories:
    • Rechargeable Li-ion Battery EN-EL10
    • Charging AC Adapter EH-68P
    • USB Cable UC-E6
    • Audio Video Cable EG-CP14
    • Strap AN-CP19
    • Stylus TP-1
    • Software Suite CD-ROM
 

Conclusion

We have been taken a little back by the S4000. On the one hand, we have a
passable movie mode, tactile icons for cut fingers of children only and
a flash invasive. Whereas, on the other hand, we have a look as simple
as seductive grip with very simple and very good quality pictures for
this price range. So to conclude this is a device that is not perfect
but it does not constitute a bad choice.

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