Nikon launches three new CoolPix compacts

The CoolPix S3700, S2900 and L31 are an 'expansion' of the current range rather than replacements

Nikon routinely refreshes its CoolPix cameras around this time of year and what usually happens is that the older versions stay on sale at a lower price and there's an extended period of overlap.

Nikon CoolPix S3700

Nikon CoolPix S3700

The new CoolPix S3700 is the 'social' camera. Its predecessor is the S3600 which was introduced a year earlier in January 2014. In most respects they're identical, right down to the 20-megapixel 1/2.3-inch sensor and 8x optical zoom – though the S3700 is just a couple of millimetres narrower and a few grams lighter.

But the S3700 adds built-in Wi-Fi and NFC (near field communications) for wireless picture transfer to a smart device. Nikon says you can activate NFC transfer with a simple tap of the camera and there's a button for sending pictures by Wi-Fi.

The S3700 will be available on February 26th at a price of £100 (about US$151, AU$186)

Nikon CoolPix S2900

Nikon CoolPix S2900

The new CoolPix S2900 is Nikon's 'stylish' offering, and is effectively an update of the S2800. It has the same 20-megapixel ½.3-inch sensor as the S3700, but this time with a 5x optical zoom. It's exclusive to UK catalog retailer Argos and it's available right now at a price of £100 and in a range of colours.

Nikon CoolPix L31

Nikon's L-series cameras are designed to offer simpler operation and value for money. The L31 (shown top) joins the existing L30 and L29 cameras. A quick glance at the specs doesn't reveal any obvious differences between the older L29 and the new L31. Both have 5x optical zooms and 16-megapixel 1/2.3-inch sensors. Interestingly, the existing L30 has a higher-resolution 20-megapixel sensor, though with small sensor sizes like these more pixels isn't always better.

The L31 is designed to be simple to use, with one-button movie recorder and power provided by regular AA batteries which are easy to replace almost anywhere. It's available immediately and costs £80 (about US$121, AU$149).