Nikon Coolpix P510: 10 things you need to know

Nikon Coolpix P510
Nikon P510: 24-1000mm superzoom for under £400

Bridge cameras typically offer DSLR-like functionality and generously long zooms at an affordable price point. But the Nikon Coolpix P500 replacement is taking this to the next level.

Here are 10 things you need to know about the Nikon Coolpix P510…

1. Nikon P510 superzoom

The P510's 42x Nikkor zoom offers the full-frame DSLR equivalent of 24-1000mm. Its predecessor, the Coolpix 500 offered an optical zoom range of 'just' 36x (22.5-810mm), so the 510 loses a bit on the wide end, but makes gains at the telephoto. As well as substantially increasing subject size, the incredible/insane magnification on offer at the 510's full zoom setting will also magnify any camera shake. But help is at hand…

2. It comes with lens-shift stabilisation

To combat the wobbles and help improve sharpness, the P510 features Nikon's second generation of lens-shift VR (Vibration Reduction), something the P500 lacked. That said, you'll still need a very steady hand – and plenty of light - to get sharp pictures from a 1000mm equivalent lens, as the maximum aperture at this setting is f/5.9.

3. It features a 16MP backlit sensor

The 1/2.3in CMOS sensor offers a resolution of 16 megapixels and is back-illuminated, which helps the P510 achieve faster processing times and should ensure improved performance in low light. The normal sensitivity range runs from ISO 100-3200, and is expandable to an equivalent of ISO 6400.

4. The LCD is articulated

The high-res 912k-dot LCD monitor can be tilted for shooting in awkward positions. This is particularly useful for low-level close-up photography and it makes shooting video a breeze. The scene also has an anti-reflective covering to improve visibility when using it in bright light.

5. Advanced movie functionality

Like any bridge camera worth its salt, the Coolpix P510 offers a direct movie recording button for quick recording of 1080p Full HD movies with stereo sound. You can use the optical zoom with autofocus while recording, though how much of the operational sound will be picked up by the on-board miss is unclear. The P510 can also shoot slow or fast motion at speeds of up to 120 fps (VGA) and in Apple-friendly iFrame format.

6. Nikon P510 GPS

A built-in Global Positioning System records the latitude and longitude of the location where a picture, saving it in the EXIF data.

7. It can hit 7 frames per second

The P510 lets you shoot a burst of up to five full-resolution pictures at 7fps or up to 30 full-res shots at 1fps.

8. Electronic viewfinder

To be honest, this is probably one of the most disappointing aspects of the P510. When shooting with a 1000mm-equivalent focal length, it pays to have the camera pressed close to your eye rather than looking at the rear LCD at arms length – if you want to improve your chances of bagging crisp shots, that is. However, the P510's small EVF only offers a resolution of 201k dots, which is no more than the P500's

9. Nikon P510 price

The P510 offers a 42x zoom that gives the equivalent reach of a 24-1000mm lens – all for £399.99.

10. Nikon P510 release date

The P500 replacement goes on sale from 22nd March.