Nikon Coolpix S500 digital compact camera
At this time, the Nikon Coolpix camera series is mainly aimed at the amateur and those who like to have a handy compact camera. An exception is the Nikon P5000; with its many setting possibilities it will appeal to the experienced photographer. The Nikon S500 is a compact camera that will, fully automated, do its job by means of the intelligent software inside the camera. Actions are being performed nearly completely automatic and correct the image quality if needed. The compact format and the light weight make it easy to take the camera along in your pocket.
Nikon S500 - VR-image stabilization system
An important component of the camera is the VR image stabilization system; it directly contributes in the image quality, in this case the sharpness of the picture. Although the Nikon S500 does not have an exceptional large range, such a system will alleviate movement blurring, which has been caused by a too long shutter speed in bad lighting situations. It's a pity that the Nikon Coolpix S500 has not been equipped with a 28mm wide-angle lens. This feature could be decisive for a certain group of consumers.
Nikon Coolpix S500 - Good image quality
The image quality of the Nikon Coolpix S500 compact camera is fine and the color saturation is average. I prefer a little more spice, but this is personal; a matter of image editing afterwards. In excessive artificial light, the Nikon S500 may deviate from its excellent white balance metering, but this can be adjusted by selecting the right white balance setting in the camera's menu.
Nikon Coolpix S500 - ISO quality
Focusing with the Nikon Coolpix S500 goes nice and smooth and, with a few exceptions, will never fail. In regards to macro, to be honest, I expected a smaller focus distance; nevertheless the results are fine. The ISO quality may be improved, especially at a 400 ISO value. Noise is strongly visible here and to my opinion you should only use this option in emergencies. Fujifilm with its Super CCD sensor proves that it is possible to make a difference here; so far their sensor is insuperable. The 7 Megapixels resolution is more than enough to print from small to poster format, what more does the consumer need?
Nikon S500 - Pre-programmed scenes
The pre-programmed scenes of the Nikon S500 offer an excellent solution for a large diversity in subject situations. The camera sets lighting and image processing so it is adjusted to the type of subject; this way the end result will be bit more appealing than a picture taken in the standard Auto mode. The Nikon Coolpix S500 also has a panoramic setting, less convincing because of the lacking of a wide-angle setting, but it will still give nice results nevertheless. It's a pity that the images cannot be merged together directly inside the camera but that separate software is needed for this.
Nikon Coolpix S500 - Fine digital camera!
The Nikon Coolpix S500 has pleased me in practice. The camera is extremely users friendly and gives a fine end result. In regards to comfort and user friendliness the Nikon S500 does not seem to need many improvements. Of course, there is always room for improvement in regards to quality. I would like to see improvement in the noise values and I hope that Nikon does not let themselves be tempted by only looking for the larger ISO values. I would like to see pixel quality and with that a high quality ISO value up to 800 instead of the 2000 ISO or higher which the marketing department thinks so highly of. Whoever is looking for an excellent performing compact camera and who has no ambitions to use the camera for extensive digital photographing, will find an ultimately decent camera in the Nikon S500. The Nikon Coolpix S500 offers a lot of value for its money and supplies that, which you might expect from a compact camera, a lot of comfort and a fine result!
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Nikon Coolpix S500 - SD memory card
Therefore, if buying a Nikon S500 camera, it is advised to purchase a flash memory card at the same time. There's an enormous supply of Secure Digital cards. You can choose from several different storage capacities or the speed in which the card can manage to read or write data. In the case of the Nikon Coolpix S500, the speed of the card doesn't matter too much; an average speed will suffice excellently. Since the prices of SD cards have decreased strongly, the advice is a minimum of 512MB, but even better would be to purchase 1GB.
Considering a 512MB memory card capacity:
JPEG - High - 3072 x 2304 pixels -140 pictures
JPEG - Normal - 3072 x 2304 pixels - 280 pictures
JPEG - Wide screen - 3072 x 1728 pixels - 370 pictures
JPEG - Normal - 2592 x 1944 pixels - 390 pictures
JPEG - Normal - 2048 x 1536 pixels - 710 pictures
JPEG - Normal - 1024 x 840 pixels - 2090 pictures
JPEG - Normal - 640 x 480 pixels - 3930 pictures
Video - 640 x 480 pixels - 30fps - 7 min 20 seconds
Video - 320 x 240 pixels - 30fps - 14 min 40 seconds
Video - 320 x 240 pixels - 15fps - 29 min
Video - 160 x 120 pixels - 15fps - 96 min