Nikon Coolpix P300 review

Nikon's new compact boasts full manual control and a fast f/1.8 lens

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Nikon P300 Review: Verdict


With the Nikon P300 price tag at just below £300, the camera certainly delivers value for money. Not only is it a superb and easy-to-use compact with manual and creative capabilities, but the results it produces exceed expectation for the Nikon P300 price point.

In particular, we were most impressed with its stellar performance at higher sensitivities, deftly taming noise right through the range, with distortion only becoming an issue at ISO 3200. Colours diluted only ever so slightly and details merged at this sensitivity, but certainly nothing worse than what we've witnessed on cheaper compact cameras at around the IS0 800 mark.

We like

The Nikon P300 produced some of the clearest images at high ISOs that we've yet to see from a digital compact camera, with strong colours and smooth tonal gradations. This is down to the P300's fast-aperture lens.

We dislike

The Macro setting deactivates when the user switches scene mode, filter option or into/out of Auto, and in auto and a handful of scene modes the Nikon P300 favours the highlights and shows a small leniency to underexposing. However, these are only minor criticisms.

Verdict

Sporting an enviable catalogue of features, the Nikon Coolpix P300 would be well-suited to a DSLR user seeking an easier camera to transport for everyday use, or even a holiday alternative that shares the ability for manual command and a heightened performance in low light.

Arguably the P300's other, more novel functions, such as full HD movie capture, filter effects and panorama modes, may attract enthusiastic compact camera shooters who are perhaps looking to step up and operate a camera with a deeper feature set that is also able to execute a much higher calibre of images.

Tech Specs

Product TypeCompact Camera
Battery Size SupportedProprietary Battery Size
Maximum Video Resolution1920 x 1080
Effective Camera Resolution12.2 Megapixel
USBYes
HDMIYes
Wide AngleYes
PictBridgeYes
Product FamilyCoolpix
HD Movie ModeYes
Memory Card SupportedSecure Digital (SD) Card, Secure Digital High Capacity (SDHC) Card, Secure Digital Extended Capacity (SDXC)
Image StabilizationOptical
Optical Zoom4.2x
Digital Zoom2x
Brand NameNikon
FeaturesFace Detection, Blink Detection, Smile Detection, Continuous Shooting Mode, Self-timer
Screen Size7.6 cm (3")
Video FormatsMPEG-4
Viewfinder TypeNo
Weight (Approximate)190 g
Image Sensor Size1/2.3" (6.16 mm x 4.62 mm)
Maximum Image Resolution4000 x 3000
Display Screen TypeLCD
Height58.3 mm
Width103 mm
Depth32 mm
Focal Length4.30 mm to 17.90 mm
Image FormatsJPEG
Focus ModesAuto
ManufacturerNikon Corporation
Product ModelP300
Product NameCoolpix P300 Compact Camera
Product LineCoolpix
Exposure Control
  • Program AE
  • Shutter Priority AE
  • Aperture Priority AE
  • Manual
Manufacturer Part Number9704906
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.nikon.co.uk
Marketing Information

The COOLPIX P300 is a powerful compact camera with an incredibly bright lens that delivers beautiful results, particularly when shooting at night or in challenging lighting conditions. The specially crafted NIKKOR lens offers a fast f/1.8 aperture, starts at an ultra-wide 24mm, and employs Nikon's High Refractive lndex glass to deliver sharp images with high contrast. Combined with a highly sensitive back illuminated CMOS image sensor and full manual controls, this camera offers the creative freedom to capture scenes just as you see them.

Package Contents
  • Coolpix P300 Compact Camera
  • Strap AN-CP19
  • Audio Video EG-CP16
  • AC Adapter EH-69P
  • Rechargeable Li-ion Battery EN-EL12
  • USB Cable UC-E6
Limited Warranty1 Year