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"Picky Details" for the Nikon Coolpix 3500 digital camera
(Timing, Power, and Storage Info)

Timing
I measure both cycle times and shutter delay times, using a test system I designed and built for the purpose. (Crystal-controlled, with a resolution of 0.001 second.) Here are the numbers I collected for the Nikon Coolpix 3500:

 

Nikon Coolpix 3500 Timings
Operation
Time
(secs)
Notes
Power On -> First shot
4.32
Nikon startup screen appears and lens appears to position itself internally. About average.
Shutdown
1.63
Lens retracts (internally - why, it's never exposed"). Still, faster than average.
Play to Record, first shot
1.31
Time until first shot is captured. Pretty fast.
Record to play
1.12
Time to display a large/fine file after capture. Pretty fast.
Shutter lag, full autofocus
1.09/1.06
First time is at full wide-angle, second is full telephoto. A bit slower than average. (Average is 1.0 to a bit lower.)
Shutter lag, prefocus
0.196
Time to capture, after half-pressing shutter button. Faster than average. (Average is about 0.3)
Cycle Time, max/min resolution
3.65 / 3.20
First numbers are for large/fine files, second number is time for small/basic images. Times are averages. The camera displays an auto review of each shot, which cannot be canceled. A bit slower than average, these days.
Cycle Time, continuous mode, max/min resolution
0.76 / 0.55
(1.31/1.81 fps)
First number is for large/fine, second is for small/basic files. Numbers beneath are corresponding frames per second. Fairly fast.

Overall, the Coolpix 3500 is about an average-speed camera. It has a slightly slow shutter response in autofocus mode, but is a bit faster than average when "prefocused" by half-pressing and holding the shutter button before the shot itself. Shot to shot cycle times are also a little slow by current standards, but not too bad overall.

Power
The Coolpix 3500 uses one Li-ion rechargeable battery for power. Unfortunately, Nikon didn't ship a power adapter with the camera, so I couldn't conduct my normal power drain measurements. I did time the camera running from a freshly-charged battery, and found that it ran a bit over 90 minutes in capture mode with the LCD turned on. Not bad for a compact model, but you should definitely consider purchasing a second battery to pack along in your pocket for longer shooting excursions.

 

Storage Capacity
The Coolpix 3500 stores its photos on CompactFlash memory cards, and a 16MB card is included with the camera. (I strongly recommend buying at least a 64MB card, preferably a 128MB one, to give yourself extra space for extended outings.) The chart below shows how many images can be stored on the included 16MB card at each size/quality setting.

 

Image Capacity vs
Resolution/Quality
16MB Memory Card
Fine
Normal
Economy
2,048 x 1,536 Images
(Avg size)
10
1,600KB
19
813KB
37
427KB
Approx.
Compression
6:1 12:1 22:1
1,600 x 1,200 Images
(Avg size)
16
985KB
31
508KB
59
271KB
Approx.
Compression
6:1 11:1 21:1
1,280 x 960 Images
(Avg size)
25
640KB
47
336KB
84
189KB
Approx.
Compression
6:1
11:1
20:1
1,024 x 768 Images
(Avg size)
37
427KB
69
230KB
121
131KB
Approx.
Compression
6:1
10:1
18:1
640 x 480
Images
(Avg size)
84
189KB
139
115KB
216
74KB
Approx.
Compression
5:1
8:1
12:1

 

Download Speed
The Coolpix 3500 connects to a host computer via a USB interface. Downloading files to my 500 MHz PowerMac G4 (OS 9.1), I clocked it at 562 KBytes/second. This is pretty fast as USB-connected cameras go. (Cameras with slow USB interfaces run as low as 300 KB/s, cameras with fast ones run as high as 600 KB/s.)

 

CP3500 Review
CP3500 Test Images
CP3500 Specifications
CP3500 "Picky Details"
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