Nikon Coolpix S9300 review

Great 16MP travel zoom features but several flaws

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  • Great zoom range
  • Fast autofocus
  • Reliable white balance
  • High quality screen
  • GPS capability


  • Froze during testing
  • Pricy
  • Poor battery life
  • Some better rivals
  • No manual controls

Back in 2006, Panasonic introduced the digital travel zoom compact camera with its Lumix DMC-TZ1. Ever since, travel zooms have acquired increasingly longer zooms and ever smaller bodies.

Keen to establish a foothold in the travel zoom market, Nikon has launched the Coolpix S9300, which replaces the year-old Nikon Coolpix S9100 and competes with the new Panasonic TZ30 (and its predecessor the TZ20) and the Canon PowerShot SX260 HS.

The Nikon S9300 sports a 16 megapixel CMOS sensor (compared to its predecessor's 12MP unit) and introduces GPS logging and 3D photo capability.

It has an 18x optical zoom that extends from a usefully wide 25mm to an impressive 450mm and features relatively wide maximum apertures of f/3.5 at 25mm and f/5.9 at 450mm.

Nikon Coolpix S9300

The Nikon Coolpix S9300 offers Full HD 1080p video recording with stereo sound and full use of the zoom, a 3-inch 921,000 dot LCD screen and fast autofocus. It can also take 360-degree panoramas and create HDR images, and includes optical vibration reduction.

Sitting at the top of Nikon's Style range, the Nikon Coolpix S9300 has a recommended UK price of £300 and US price of $350. Nikon makes the bold claim that the Coolpix S9300 is "perfect for use in any situation" citing travel, sports events and concerts as its natural habitat.

Nikon Coolpix S9300

This new model features a compact body considering its 18x optical zoom, and thrives on point and shoot simplicity with 19 scene modes, a Scene Auto Selector mode and no manual or semi-manual modes.

The absence of manual controls is odd, considering that Panasonic and Canon's similarly priced models offer shutter and aperture priority plus manual control – all in addition to numerous scene modes. Therefore those wanting any manual control over images should bypass the Nikon Coolpix S9300 and consider Panasonic or Canon's offerings.

Tech Specs

Product TypeCompact Camera
Battery Size SupportedProprietary Battery Size
Green CompliantYes
Maximum Video Resolution1920 x 1080
Wireless LANNo
Effective Camera Resolution16 Megapixel
Wide AngleYes
Product FamilyCoolpix S
HD Movie ModeYes
Memory Card SupportedEye-Fi Card, Secure Digital (SD) Card, Secure Digital High Capacity (SDHC) Card, Secure Digital Extended Capacity (SDXC)
Image StabilizationOptical
Optical Zoom18x
Digital Zoom4x
Brand NameNikon
FeaturesLive View, Self-timer, Face Detection, Continuous Shooting Mode
Screen Size7.6 cm (3")
Video FormatsMOV, MPEG-4
Viewfinder TypeNo
Weight (Approximate)215 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
Height62.3 mm
Width108.7 mm
Depth30.6 mm
Product SeriesS
Focal Length4.50 mm to 81 mm
Image FormatsJPEG, MPO
External FlashNo
Focus ModesAuto, Manual
ManufacturerNikon Corporation
Product ModelS9300
Product NameCoolpix S9300 Compact Camera
Product LineCoolpix
Exposure Control

Programmed Auto

Aspect Ratio16:9
Manufacturer Part NumberVMA923E1
Manufacturer Website Address
Marketing Information

Behind the slimline body of the COOLPIX S9300 lies a wealth of cutting-edge technology that sets this 16-megapixel camera apart.

The NIKKOR 18x optical super zoom captures distant action or candid close-ups with ease. Lens-shift vibration reduction enables sharp results and a steady image on the LCD screen, so it's easy to frame your shots.

You can record Full HD movies at the touch of a button, and even film separate scenes as one seamless movie. Built-in GPS capability lets you tag your photos at any time, or track your route on the move.

Package Contents
  • Coolpix S9300 Compact Camera
  • Camera Strap
  • Rechargeable Li-ion Battery EN-EL12 (with Terminal Cover)
  • Charging AC Adapter EH-69P
  • USB Cable UC-E6
  • Audio Video Cable EG-CP16
  • Software Installer CD
  • Reference Manual CD
Limited Warranty1 Year