Full review posted for Nikon Coolpix 5400!|
(Monday, July 14, 2003 - 17:13 EDT)
Nikon's Coolpix line have long been favorites with the "enthusiast" crowd, and with good reason - they offer a wide range of features that cater to the serious photographer, providing all the exposure flexibility you could ask for, and helping them integrate with external strobe systems and Nikon's wide range of digicam accessory lenses.
The latest in the lineup is the Nikon Coolpix 5400, a 5-megapixel, 4x zoom-equipped model that extends both the zoom range and feature set of the earlier 5000. The 5400 is an interesting camera too, in that it manages to meet the needs of beginners as well as it does those of enthusiasts. In full auto mode, the 5400 is as easy to use as any basic point & shoot camera, but has the benefit of Nikon's sophisticated exposure algorithms. For more challenging situations, the 5400 sports a generous assortment of scene modes, more than found on most of its competitors, regardless of price.
As with the rest of the Coolpix line, color was generally excellent, apart from a minor problem with grass-green, exposure was accurate, resolution was good, and both shutter lag and cycle time very good as well. About my only complaint with the camera was that it tended to lose highlight detail quickly when confronted with harsh lighting (as in my Outdoor Portrait test), and its contrast adjustment option really didn't work as I felt it should.
Overall though, a very worthy camera, and one that I think will be very popular with the "enthusiast" crowd. (And thanks to its easy auto-mode operation and ample scene modes, it'll be just as suitable to rank beginners looking for a camera to grow into.) Check it out!