Nikon has just announced a whole new kind of camera: the Coolpix A, a 16Mp, DX format compact camera that takes over the flagship role of the Coolpix line. The goal here: combine the image quality of a dSLR with the size of a compact to create the most versatile imaging machine imaginable.
So, what of the Coolpix A?
If there is any single highlight feature, it is the sensor: a 16 Mp DX format chip capable of delivering the same image quality as that found in a Nikon dSLR. Being a 16Mp chip, the same as Nikon's last generation of DX dSLRs, the question arises: is it the same chip? Unfortunately, there's no word from Nikon on that. My bet: its the same chip with a few modern tweaks for improved performance.
As for other headline features, the Coolpix A, having such a top-notch sensor, also has a lens to match: a 18.5mm (28mm film equivalent) that sports a fast aperture of f2.8, which is equally at home in situations of blurring background in portraits, stopping fast action for sports, and capturing pictures in low light. Nikon also boasts of the camera;s AF (yet to be tested) and 4fps continuous drive.
Additionally, the Coolpix A also features settings to make all photographers happy. Are you a beginner who just wants to aim and press the button? Well, put the camera in full auto mode. Are you a serious shooter who likes to have full control over everything the camera does? Well, the Coolpix A has full manual mode, too (as well as everything in between).
As for fluff, there's plenty of that, too. Like many recent Nikon dSLRs, the Coolpix A has wi-fi capability, a truckload of scene modes, filter effects, and more video mode options than one could ever shake a stick at.
Want one? The camera will start shipping this month at a price of $1099.95.
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Bodzash Photography & Astronomy