Nikon Coolpix S4300 review

The ultra-compact S4300 boasts a great 3-inch high resolution touchscreen

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  • Responsive touchscreen
  • Slim body
  • Easy to use
  • Reliable white balance and metering
  • Effective touch focus


  • Basic image quality unimpressive
  • Narrow apertures
  • Hard to judge image quality on LCD
  • No manual control
  • Expensive vs rivals

The Nikon Coolpix S4300 is a sleek ultra-compact camera with the bonus of a 3-inch 460,000-dot touchscreen.

Intended as an unthreatening point and shoot, the Nikon S4300 is slim enough for most pockets and simple enough for novices to fully exploit.

Priced at £150 in the UK and $170 in the US, the petite Nikon Coolpix S4300 features a 16 megapixel CCD sensor and 6x optical zoom, which extends from a usefully wide 26mm to 156mm.

Sadly the maximum apertures are average, at f/3.5 at wide angle and f/6.5 when fully zoomed in, but the camera does boast lens shift vibration reduction to reduce camera shake.

Nikon Coolpix S4300

The Nikon Coolpix S4300 is designed to be easy to operate, with just three buttons on its back- one to start HD video recording, another to view photos and the third to select between Auto mode, the 20 different Scene Modes, six Special Effects modes and Smart Portrait mode.

Everything else is found through on-screen displays that feature reasonably large on-screen buttons.

Nikon Coolpix S4300 review

The Nikon S4300 comes with a 2-inch long black plastic stylus, but the on-screen buttons are large enough to be operated with a finger.

The 3-inch LCD touchscreen can also be used for touch shooting, subject tracking and touch autofocus/auto exposure.

Nikon Coolpix S4300 at a glance
Sensor size:
16MP 1/2.3-inch CCD
Storage: SD card, 74MB internal memory
LCD screen: 3-inch, 460k dot touchscreen LCD
Dimensions: 95.5mm x 58.9mm x 20.8mm, 139g

Thanks to its "rapid menu system" and the simplicity of the touchscreen, Nikon claims that the S4300 is "designed for capturing fleeting moments as soon as they happen" with "super-fast start up" and one touch movie recording.

The pared down simplicity of the menus and numerous automatic modes make the Nikon Coolpix S4300 perfect for anyone wanting their camera to completely simplify the photo taking process. However, those wanting manual control over images should look elsewhere.

Build quality and handling

As a dedicated touchscreen camera, the Nikon Coolpix S4300 has very few physical controls, and navigation overall is simple.

The top of the camera features the on/off button, shutter release and zoom rocker, and the back houses just three buttons and the touchscreen. Located on the bottom of the body is the battery/SD card compartment and AV-out port.

Nikon Coolpix S4300 review

The camera's three buttons access image playback, start HD video recording and enable you to select shooting modes. All the camera's other features are accessed via the touchscreen. The Nikon Coolpix S4300 also includes a plastic stylus for use on the touchscreen.

The Scene button provides access to the Nikon Coolpix S4300's controls, with the choice of Auto mode, Scene Modes, Special Effects modes or Smart Portrait. When in each of these modes, on-screen buttons enable you to alter flash, self-timer and exposure compensation settings and activate macro focusing.

Nikon Coolpix S4300 review

A further on-screen Menu button provides access to all other settings, including image size, touchscreen settings, ISO sensitivity, white balance and so on.

Using the stylus, navigation of the touchscreen menus is swift and responsive, but those with big hands may find it hard to operate the touchscreen with their fingers, because some on-screen buttons aren't particularly large. Another potential issue is that the stylus is small and very easy to lose, especially considering there's nowhere on the camera to attach it.

Nikon Coolpix S4300

Overall, the Nikon Coolpix S4300 feels well built, with no flex in the body or lens mountings and sturdy covers for the battery compartment and AV-out port.

Although the camera is small, it fits nicely in the hand, and you can operate the touchscreen comfortably with either hand while supporting the camera with the other.

Tech Specs

Product TypeCompact Camera
Battery Size SupportedProprietary Battery Size
Green CompliantYes
Maximum Video Resolution1280 x 720
Wireless LANNo
Effective Camera Resolution16 Megapixel
Wide AngleYes
Product FamilyCoolpix S
HD Movie ModeYes
Memory Card SupportedSecure Digital (SD) Card, Secure Digital High Capacity (SDHC) Card, Secure Digital Extended Capacity (SDXC), Eye-Fi Card
Image StabilizationOptical
Optical Zoom6x
Digital Zoom4x
Brand NameNikon
FeaturesSelf-timer, Blink Detection, Face Detection, Smile Detection, Continuous Shooting Mode
Screen Size7.6 cm (3")
Video FormatsMotion JPEG (AVI), MPEG-4
Viewfinder TypeNo
Weight (Approximate)139 g
Green Compliance Certificate/AuthorityRoHS, WEEE
Image Sensor Size1/2.3" (6.16 mm x 4.62 mm)
Maximum Image Resolution4608 x 3456
Display Screen TypeLCD
Height58.9 mm
Width95.5 mm
Depth20.8 mm
Product SeriesS
Focal Length4.60 mm to 27.60 mm
Image FormatsJPEG
External FlashNo
Focus ModesAuto, Manual
ManufacturerNikon Corporation
Product ModelS4300
Product NameCoolpix S4300 Compact Camera
Product LineCoolpix
Exposure Control

Programmed Auto Exposure

Aspect Ratio16:9
Manufacturer Part NumberVMA942E1
Manufacturer Website Address
Marketing Information

The pocket-size 16-megapixel COOLPIX S4300 keeps you ready to capture the next magic moment at a touch.

The rapid menu system and high-resolution touchscreen let you focus and shoot with one-touch simplicity, or switch between functions with ease. The NIKKOR 6x optical zoom makes group shots or close-ups easy, and fun filter effects let you enhance photos on the spot.

When the moment warrants filming, you can switch to record crisp video clips instantly with the dedicated button.

Package Contents
  • Coolpix S4300 Compact Camera
  • Camera Strap
  • Rechargeable Li-ion Battery EN-EL19 (with Battery Case)
  • Stylus TP-1
  • Charging AC Adapter EH-69P
  • USB Cable UC-E6
  • Audio Video Cable EG-CP14
  • Software Installer CD
  • Reference Manual CD
Limited Warranty1 Year