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Nikon Coolpix S5300 Review -- First Impressions

by Dave Pardue
Preview posted: 01/07/2014

Nikon S5300 review - front view

Sitting atop the high end of what Nikon calls their "Budget Friendly Cameras" line, the Coolpix S5300 is the successor to last year's Coolpix S5200 and boasts a few notable upgrades.

Moving up to an 8x optical NIKKOR ED lens (from 6x) it shares additional features with its predecessor such as up to 4x digital zoom, a 16-megapixel 1/2.3" BSI CMOS sensor, 460K-dot LCD, Full HD video at 30p and built in Wi-Fi functionality. Along with the longer zoom, maximum aperture drops slightly from a range of f/3.5-6.5 on the S5200 to f/3.7-6.6 on the S5300.

Also new is a feature Nikon calls Dynamic Fine Zoom, which is said to improve image quality for the first 2x of the digital zoom. The company doesn't say how this is achieved, but it sounds conceptually similar to Sony's Clear Image Zoom, which works using pattern matching algorithms to boost the quality of the digital zoom's interpolation. In other words, it makes smarter guesses.

Oddly, full-res burst shooting performance is reported to be slightly slower on the S5300 at 8.6fps for 7 shots versus 10fps for 7 shots on the S5200. Lens shift VR remains from the predecessor for still shots as does the Motion Detection feature to further help reduce blur. The S5300 adds Electronic VR for enhanced vibration reduction while shooting video.

The S5300 uses a rechargeable lithium-ion battery rated at 180 shots per charge and supports SD, SDHC and SDXC memory cards. The camera includes 25MB of internal memory as well. In addition to built-in Wi-Fi, connectivity options include a Micro (Type D) HMDI port, USB port and A/V outputs.

The Coolpix S5300 will be available from February 2014 for a suggested retail price of US$179.95 and will be offered in the color Plum.

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