Digital Cameras Guide
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Far Out Imaging
Super-zoom compact cameras have always been part of a special category. They usually lack the fun looks and handling of smaller compact cameras and the high-quality optics of larger snappers. Where they exist simply to help you capture long-distance moments outdoors, super-zoom cameras haven’t really taken off in the market. Nikon believes that more work can be done on this segment, and so the COOLPIX S9200 was born.
A hefty weight will be the first thing to greet you when you grab a hold of the S9200. It’s kind of thick, but that’s to be expected with its super-zooming optics. It will still fit in your pocket – just don’t expect it to fit in discreetly. And yet, with added weight comes added durability. The camera is solid from top to bottom. At the heart of the body you’ll find its 3-inch 921k-dot LCD display with anti-reflection coating. It’s as good as a screen you’d find on Nikon’s DSLR range, so viewing photos will be as pleasurable as taking them.
The main attraction of the S9200 is obviously its 18x optical zoom backed up by a 16MP CMOS sensor. The optical zoom translates into a 35mm equivalent of 25-450mm, which means it goes wide as well as far. To make up for any vibrations experienced while fully zoomed out, Nikon’s Lens-shift Vibration Reduction technology was employed to prevent unneeded camera shake. To top it off, the S9200 is equipped with full 1080p HD movie recording with stereo sound. Recording can be done the instant you press the red video button found at the back, and once it’s activated, both the zoom and VR features are constantly working to get the best out of your videos.
From the physical aspect, the only let down would be the dials and buttons. The buttons found at the back of the unit are either too flat or too loose. The video record button for one is recessed far enough to make it a bit troublesome to press. This prevents accidental presses, but needs an extra to push when you actually need it. The shutter button, on the other hand, is solidly built. There’s a distinct difference between it being half-pressed and fully pushed down, and that’s the most important element of all of a camera’s buttons.
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