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"Picky Details" for the Nikon Coolpix 7600 digital camera
(Timing, Power, and Storage Info)

 

Timing

When you press the shutter release on a camera, there's usually a lag time or delay before the shutter actually fires. This corresponds to the time required for the autofocus and autoexposure mechanisms time to do their work, and can amount to a fairly long delay in some situations. Since this number is rarely reported on (and even more rarely reported accurately), and can significantly affect the picture taking experience, I routinely measure both shutter delay and shot to shot cycle times for all cameras I test, 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 7600:

 

Nikon Coolpix 7600 Timings
Operation
Time
(secs)
Notes
Power On -> First shot
3.2
LCD turns on and lens extends forward. Slightly on the slow side.
Shutdown
2.1 - 75
First time is time to retract lens, second time is worst-case buffer-clearing time. First time is average, second is rather slow, but corresponds to clearing more than 100 small/basic quality images from the buffer in continuous shooting mode.
Play to Record, first shot
1.2
Time until first shot is captured. About average.
Record to play
3.3 / 0.8
First time is that required to display a large/fine file immediately after capture, second time is that needed to display a large/fine file that has already been processed and stored on the memory card. First time is a bit slow, second time is fairly fast.
Shutter lag, full autofocus
0.83 / 0.89
First time is at full wide-angle, second is full telephoto. About average.
Shutter lag, prefocus
0.104
Time to capture, after half-pressing shutter button. Fairly fast.
Cycle Time, max/min resolution

2.22

Shoots at the same pace for large/fine files or "TV" mode (640x480) images. Times are averages. Shoots 7 images this fast in large/fine mode, then slows to about 3.1 seconds per shot. In TV mode, shoots over 50 shots this fast without slowing. Buffer clears in 11 seconds for large/fine images, 5 seconds for lowest resolution. Buffer clearing times measured with a Kingston 133x SD card, slower cards may give slower performance. Reasonably fast for a camera of its price/performance class.
Cycle Time, Flash Recharge 8 The time it takes to prepare for the next shot, after a full-power flash discharge. On the slow side of average.
Cycle Time, continuous mode, max/min resolution 0.66 / 0.64
(1.51 / 1.57 fps)
First number is for large/fine files, second number is time for "TV" size images. Times are averages. Shoots 7 images this fast in large/fine mode, then slows to about 3.5 seconds per shot. In TV mode, shoots over 100 shots this fast without slowing. Buffer clears in 17 seconds for large/fine images, 73 seconds after 100 shots at lowest resolution. Buffer clearing times measured with a Kingston 133x SD card, slower cards may give slower performance. About average continuous-mode performance.
Cycle Time, continuous Multi 16 mode 0.60
(1.66 fps)

Camera captures 768 x 576 pixel images, stores them in 4x4 arrays inside normal 3072 x 2304 files. Ticks off 16 shots at a steady 0.6 seconds apiece. Every 16 shots, the camera pauses for about 2.5 seconds to write the images to a file, after which it captures another 16 frames at the 1.66 fps rate. Good if not exceptional speed.

Average performance for its price class. The term that best describes the Nikon Coolpix 7600's performance is "average." It's neither greatly slower nor greatly faster than other cameras competing in its price range. It's slightly sluggish on startup, its flash take a bit longer than average to recharge, and its shutter lag in full autofocus mode isn't up to the best of the competition, but overall performance is about what one would expect for a camera selling at the 7600's price point.

 

Power

Average battery life for a camera running from two AA cells. The Nikon Coolpix 7600 uses two AA batteries for power, but its lack of a standard external power terminal prevented us from conducting our standard power measurements. It does seem to have acceptable battery life, particularly if you run it from high-capacity rechargeable NiMH cells. Not being able to measure the battery life directly, we have to rely upon Nikon's stated battery life specs, based on the CIPA standard. Under CIPA conditions (zoom adjusted on each shot, flash used in approximately 1/2 of the shots), Nikon reports battery life as 100 shots with alkaline batteries, 250 shots with their own EN-MH1 NiMH batteries, or 400 frames with lithium cells. Although we don't know what capacity Nikon's NiMH cells have, 250 shots per charge is a pretty average number. As always though, I strongly recommend picking up a couple of sets of high-capacity NiMH cells and a good-quality NiMH battery charger. (Don't skimp on the charger, a poor one won't give you the maximum capacity your batteries are capable of, could even shorten battery life considerably.)

 

Storage Capacity

The Nikon Coolpix 7600 stores its photos on SD / MMC memory cards or in approximately 14 MB of internal memory, and no card is included with the camera. (I strongly recommend buying at least a 64 MB card, preferably a 128 MB one, to give yourself extra space for extended outings.) The chart below shows how many images can be stored in the internal memory at each size/quality setting.

Image Capacity vs
Resolution/Quality
14 MB Internal Memory
Fine Normal
3072 x 2304
Images
(Avg size)
3
3.6 MB
7
1.8 MB
Approx.
Compression
6:1 12:1
2592 x 1944
Images
(Avg size)
- 10
1.3 MB
Approx.
Compression
- 12:1
2048 x 1536
Images
(Avg size)
- 17
818 KB
Approx.
Compression
- 11:1
1024 x 768 Images
(Avg size)
- 55
253 KB
Approx.
Compression
- 9:1
640 x 480
Images
(Avg size)
- 118
118 KB
Approx.
Compression
  8:1

 

Download Speed

The Nikon Coolpix 7600 connects to a host computer via a USB interface. Downloading files to our Sony desktop running Windows XP (Pentium IV, 2.4 GHz), we clocked it at 698 KBytes/second, an acceptable but unspectacular performance these days. (Cameras with slow USB interfaces run as low as 300 KB/s, cameras with fast v1.1 interfaces run as high as 600 KB/s. Cameras with USB v2.0 interfaces run as fast as several megabytes/second.)

7600 Review
7600 Test Images
7600 Specifications
7600 "Picky Details"
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