Imaging Resource rating
out of 5.0
by Mike Pasini
Review Date: 09/19/2006
Nikon’s new Coolpix S6 takes Style and merges it with Slim to emanate a unequivocally means stylecam that we can take with we everywhere. Sporting a 6.2 megapixel sensor and 3x visual wizz with ED glass, a slimline Nikon CoolPix S6 also incorporates WiFi.
A winding front follows a form of a wave, that kindly rises on a right to form a slight grip. A vast 3.0 in. LCD graces a behind of a camera, and a new rotating hoop serves as a navigation apparatus for a CoolPix S6.
Zoom is homogeneous to a 35-105mm lens, with a 4x digital zoom. The Coolpix S6‘s bearing is wholly automatic, and a continual mode offers constraint of 2.2 frames per second.
Nikon is also famous for a few special facilities that are enclosed in a CoolPix S6, including D-Lighting, that enhances darker images to urge shade detail. BestShot mode takes a array of shots in low light and a camera automatically picks a sharpest shot and saves usually that one. And their comparatively new Red-eye Fix not usually reduces red-eye, it eliminates it. Right in a camera. Face-Priority AF will keep we and your friends dancing around in front of a camera to watch a camera put a “focus box” around your faces. And new One-Touch Portrait symbol turns on these latter dual modes for discerning portraits with tiny effort.
Also, a Nikon S6’s new Pictmotion slip uncover underline not usually creates overwhelming slideshows with artistic wipes and effects, it adds song to a equation.
The Nikon CoolPix S6 is a stylecam that creates it easy to share your cinema with a 3.0 in. screen, and should find a home in lots of pockets and purses.
If we examination Dan Havlik’s examination of a Coolpix S5, we know a Nikon S Coolpix line is a one with Kate Moss in a ads. But when we got my hands on a $349.95 Coolpix S6, a S5’s vast sister, Kate Moss was distant from my mind.
Instead, we was meditative about my brother-in-law’s white Corvette with a involuntary transmission.
It’s a hips, we pronounced to myself. That gush in a behind on a ‘Vette is usually like a gush opposite a lens on a Coolpix S6. Why, mountain it on some Hot Wheels and lift it around with a wrist tag and someone is firm to ask we how many miles we get to a gallon.
No, no, no, we told myself. This isn’t about bulges and cars. This is about Style. Remember when a Coolpix line separate into a L, S, and P lines progressing this year? You know, L for Life (emphasizing palliate of use), S for Style (adding imitation capabilities and sold design), and P for Performance (advanced functionality)?
OK, so what you’re saying, we pronounced to myself, is that a Coolpix S6 doesn’t have a Performance of a P array or a morality of a L series? But it looks cool?
That’s what my brother-in-law suspicion about a white Corvette. Once he let me expostulate it down to a preference store to buy a disposable camera for my sister-in-law. She wanted to take some cinema during her initial grandchild’s initial birthday celebration he’d hocked her camera to make a down remuneration on a ‘Vette.
Hey, we said, to myself, grandchildren? We are removing serve and serve divided from Kate Moss.
Right. But I’m sketch a together to a Nikon Coolpix S6. You are usually as cold as a cinema we capture.
Design. The Coolpix S6 is a advancing digicam. With a 3.0-inch LCD, it isn’t a subcompact, yet a trim form doesn’t have room for a USB pier or AC connection. Instead, it relies on what Nikon calls a Multiconnector pier on a bottom of a camera.
You can dump a Nikon S6 into a enclosed Cool Station (a wharf with USB and AC connections) or we can cocktail it on a Kodak EasyShare printer wharf regulating a enclosed wharf insert. Without a Cool Station, though, a S6 isn’t going to final long. That’s how we assign a battery. The Kodak printer wharf can run a slip uncover and imitation cinema yet not assign a battery.
The Nikon S6 does have another choice for transmitting and duplicate photos, though. It has built-in Wireless G.
The Coolpix S6 itself is an appealing camera with a lead gray paint pursuit and chrome highlights sauce adult Nikon’s Wave design. The behind row is three-quarters lonesome by a vast LCD yet what’s left provides a ride grip, usually 4 buttons and a crafty navigator that doesn’t usually duty 4 ways, yet spins too.
I was reduction tender by a business finish of a Coolpix S6 with a peep as tighten to a lens as it could probable get. Nikon does yield an in-camera red eye repair — and a S6 needs it. But banishment a peep that tighten to a lens flattens anything it illuminates. And with a lens so tighten to a corner, it’s also easy, as Dan forked out in a S5 review, to get your finger in a shot.
The tip of a camera has a chrome bar on a right side that binds a tiny Power button, a elongated Shutter symbol and a unequivocally tiny wizz control. These are a 3 many critical controls on any camera (the ones that take a picture), yet on a Nikon S6 they’re also a smallest controls.
The Power symbol isn’t utterly as bad as it seems during first. It isn’t ignoring you, it’s usually behind to close a Nikon S6 off. Press it down until we feel it click and forget it. It will eventually spin off a power. The shiver symbol is placed accurately where your forefinger falls and we can feel a wizz push usually during a commencement of a initial corner in your finger. So we usually slip behind a tiny off a Shutter to zoom. It looks impossible, yet it works fine.
My hands seemed to fit a form of a Nikon S6 perfectly. You competence cite to grasp a right side of a camera from a tip and bottom, dire a Shutter with a tip finger. But we cite to fist a behind with my ride and a front with my index finger, withdrawal my forefinger giveaway to pierce from a Shutter symbol to a Zoom control. To solid a Nikon Coolpix S6, we reason a left side by squeezing a tip with my forefinger and a bottom with my ride and curling my index finger along a S-curved side of a camera.
The 4 buttons on a behind are good spaced. Playback is on top, Mode usually underneath it, Menu underneath that with Trash to Menu’s right. we found myself dire Mode and Menu many of a time. But afterwards we used my ride to whirl a Nikon S6 controller to name one or another option, dire it in to endorse my selection. That works unequivocally nicely.
So, yeah, we like it. A lot improved than that white Corvette.
Display/Viewfinder. When Dan discharged a miss of an visual viewfinder on a S5, a lot of people wrote in to urge a application of that tiny eyepiece. The tradeoff is that if we give it up, we get this outrageous LCD with 230,000 pixels to see your pictures. And it is a flattering constrained argument.
But this LCD is tough to see in approach sun. we took a Kodak V603 and a Nikon Coolpix S6 outward and got a glisten of a object on both of them side by side. we could see a design on a V603’s shade yet we couldn’t see it on a S6. It isn’t a LCD itself, we think, so many as whatever it is that covers it. The V603 is unfit to purify giveaway of smudges yet a S6 cleans easily. Go figure.
Performance. One emanate with all compress digicams is a singular operation of apertures available. Shutter speed is mostly compulsory to recompense for a singular orifice options, that can be a problem in low light situations. The Nikon Coolpix S6 ranged, in my exam shots, from f/3.0 to f/8.6, that is unequivocally flattering good as these things go.
It’s a tiny square of glass, yet it’s Nikon’s Extra-low Dispersion potion providing good sharpness and contrast, minimizing chromatic aberration.
Power-on wasn’t discerning yet it didn’t provoke me, either. Power-off, on a other hand, is behind a bit — and that took some removing used to. The Nikon Coolpix S6‘s Zoom opening was well-spoken and easy to control. Between Continuous mode and Multi-shot 16, we had adequate shot-to-shot control, too. Best Shot Selector also takes continual shots quickly.
Even if we know how to set a Nikon Coolpix S6 for a sold sharpened situation, Scene mode has a advantage of fast configuring — and maybe even some-more importantly — restoring camera settings. Sure, it’s easy to click Down and change into Macro mode. But it’s also easy to forget we did that (even with a nice, vast idol on a LCD to remind you) until you’ve taken a half-hour’s value of soft, hairy landscapes.
No matter what mode you’re in, a Coolpix S6 offers Menu entrance to Image options of both peculiarity and size, and EV compensation. In Scene modes their icons are blue rather than gray to prove they can be set in serve to any other choice we choose, a tiny treacherous until we know a secret.
The Nikon Coolpix S6 offers 11 true Scene modes including Party/Indoor, Beach/Snow, Sunset, Dusk/Dawn, Night Landscape, Close Up, Museum, Fireworks Show, Copy, Backlight, and Panorama Assist. I’m always blissful to see common tricks grouped together like Beach/Snow and Dusk/Dawn, minimizing a array of Scenes (to a dismay of Nikon’s Marketing department, no doubt). But we was unhappy by Museum mode, where shiver speeds were so behind (1/2 sec) that a tripod–prohibited in museums–is required. Disappointed wasn’t utterly a right word when after we detected a a Coolpix S6‘s Museum mode didn’t worry to change a ISO aloft than 100, relying wholly on Best Shot Selector to find a sharpest image. Bump that adult to ISO 400 and a shiver speed could have been 1/16 sec — scarcely manageable.
But a Nikon Coolpix S6 goes further, charity 4 Scene Assist modes, that assistance we harmonise Portrait, Landscape, Sports, and Night Portrait images. These special Scene modes have icons of their possess in a Mode menu. Just press a Menu symbol in any Scene Assist mode to see a options. Landscape, for example, offers Landscape (focusing during infinity), Scenic View (which provides a environment line in yellow), Architecture (overlays a framing grid), Group Right (to support a chairman to a right of a landmark, environment concentration and bearing for a portrait), and Group Left (same thing for someone on a left). Slide a Zoom push to a Telephoto position to get a Help shade explaining any option.
The One-Touch Portrait symbol on a tip row of a Nikon S6 automatically activates Face Priority AF (which detects and thatch concentration on faces), Advanced Red-Eye Reduction, and D-Lighting. You can also adjust a outcome from Normal to Brighter or Software by dire a Menu symbol in Portrait mode.
The Nikon Coolpix S6‘s Movie mode provides 6 options: TV film (640×480, 30 fps), Small distance (320×240, 30 fps), Small distance (320×240, 15 fps), Picmotion (320×240, 15 fps), Smaller distance (160×120, 15 fps) and Time-lapse film (640×480, 30 fps). All modes yet Time-lapse record sound, yet usually digital wizz is available. The 30 fps options are all singular to 60-second recordings, concordant with Picmotion. Time-lapse takes adult to 1,800 stills during specified intervals (30 seconds, 1 minute, 5 minutes, 10 minutes, or 30 minutes) before convention them into a 60-second clip, a genuine treat.
Options in Movie mode can close concentration during a shred or ceaselessly focus, and we set Vibration Reduction on, too, to stabilise a image.
Picmotion creates a slip uncover of a final 10 images with transitions, pointless vessel and wizz effects, and song (Pachelbel’s Canon in D is a default, yet others are available), if we use a memory card. It’s a Mode choice in a Nikon Coolpix S6‘s Playback mode, holding scarcely a notation to harmonise a show, usually 20 of that it can store on a card. After it plays, we have a choice of changing a settings or saving it to a card. Nikon recommends we crater your palm behind a orator to urge a sound — and it works!
It’s a neat attempt in a Amaze Your Friends category, yet usually a Windows chronicle of Picture Project can duplicate a Picmotion shows or upload your possess MP3 change to a Coolpix S6 for use in Picmotion shows. And, since a strange images are compulsory for playback, they are stable when we save a Picmotion film — yet they are not defenceless when we undo a show.
Voice recording. On a other hand, voice recording is one of those facilities we don’t consider many about when selling for a digicam, yet that creates a device forever some-more useful once we have it in your pocket. You can record a lecture, Aunt Charlotte’s stories about your grandmother, memos to yourself; we name it. You usually have to remember, subsequent time we are sitting there preoccupied by some prolonged story, to spin on your Nikon S6 on!
The Shooting Menu offers a Voice Recording choice that displays how many time is accessible on your storage medium. The Coolpix S6‘s inner memory can conduct scarcely 10 mins during High peculiarity and over 27 mins during Normal quality. A 128MB label can store 1:23:57 in High and 3:51:27 in Normal.
Just press a Shutter symbol to start or stop recording. During recording, we can press a OK symbol to postponement and any of a arrows to symbol a recording in a index, creation it easy to find an critical shred later. The Nikon Coolpix S6 annals in WAV format, entertaining by QuickTime. Unfortunately, a lens cover stays open in Voice Recording mode, so best to mount a camera adult routinely with a microphone on a tip panel.
WiFi. Nikon’s program implement includes PictureProject 1.6, a design organizer, and Wireless Camera Setup Utility 1.1. Both figure in regulating a S6 wirelessly.
Informit, a site clinging to information technology, recently published “Wireless Gadget Vulnerabilities: The Nikon Coolpix P1,” a news detailing a wireless vulnerabilities of a Nikon Coolpix P1 when communicating with a horde computer. But all now shipping WiFi digicams (including those from Canon and Kodak) humour from a same issue. While a hazard is real, it exists for usually a few moments we are transmitting from a camera to your computer. Transmissions to your inner network would be an issue, yet in that conditions a law-breaker would be within operation of a overhanging ball bat. In open places, however, we aren’t expected to be wakeful of anyone snooping a brief tie between your camera and computer. Of course, if your Nikon Coolpix S6 is stolen, be certain to change a cue to your WiFi hosts.
To configure a Coolpix S6 for WiFi operation, we wharf it and run a setup utility, that asks we about possibly a mechanism or network entrance prove we wish to use before essay profiles behind to a camera. You need to know a Network ID (or SSID) before selecting a mode. Camera to Computer mode requires we to tell a camera a wireless channel, possibly authentication is open or shared, a confidence employed (None, WEP 64 pieces or WEP 128 bits), a confidence pivotal format, a pivotal index, IP residence configuration, or primer IP residence if configured for manual. Access Point mode requires we to tell a camera a authentication, security, confidence pivotal format, confidence key, pivotal index, IP pattern and IP address, omission usually a channel. If your router uses hardware residence filtering, you’ll also need to know a camera’s MAC address, that is reported usually in a Setup menu’s Firmware Version listing. Fun stuff.
Even yet we know all that things about a setup and have finished all this before, it took me several tries to get a Nikon Coolpix S6 configured correctly. You unequivocally don’t know if you’ve finished a mistake until we try to connect.
The WiFi capabilities here embody a Linksys Wireless-G router, an Apple Express bridge, and a Kodak EasyShare array 3 printer dock. The Nikon Coolpix S6 can imitation wirelessly in dual ways. It can speak to a Nikon PD-10 Wireless Print Adapter (available alone for $49.95) that plugs into a printer’s USB PictBridge pier (just press a Menu symbol in WiFi mode). Or it can imitation to any printer connected to your computer. we was means to imitation to a array 3 printer connected to a network around WiFi (but not directly though a PD-10), and to imitation to a Canon MP950 connected around USB to a mechanism on a network. The printer tie is saved and can be altered on a computer, so we can switch printers though bothering a camera.
Image send is not singular to duplicating files into PictureProject, that launches as shortly as your mechanism detects a Coolpix S6 connection. If your workflow doesn’t embody PictureProject, we can send images wirelessly regulating a PC Mode menu choice when connected to your network profile. Images about 2MB in distance eliminated in about 6 seconds.
The left side of a Nikon Coolpix S6 has a tiny blue LED that indicates WiFi tie status. It’s a bit mysterious to read, though, since it tries to prove some-more than one thing with any state. Blinking means, for example, that a Coolpix S6 is possibly looking for a tie or is asleep. Steady means it’s possibly determined a tie or is transferring data. Off means no connection. An idol in a tip left of a Nikon S6’s LCD indicates tie status, with a high bar in a blue squarish idol arrangement tie and 3 bars subsequent to it arrangement vigilance strength.
You can send images you’ve recorded, of course, yet a special mode lets we send as we shoot. In this mode, a wireless tie is determined and maintained. Whenever we press a shiver button, a Coolpix S6 captures a design and transfers it wirelessly to PictureProject. From shiver press to a finish of send took 15 seconds. Images are named with a STCN prefix rather than a DSCN prefix. You can configure this mode to arrangement a summary confirming send of any design and to save a design in a camera, both of that are infirm by default. Sort of like regulating your tough expostulate for peep memory. Slow.
Also value observant is that to achive wireless transfer, a Coolpix S6‘s mode dial contingency be set to a Wireless option. This boundary we to Auto bearing mode. The primer refers to a non-existing choice to set a bearing mode for a wireless Shoot Transfer option. One can usually hope.
WiFi turns out to be utterly a battery drain. Since there’s no visual viewfinder, we also need a 3.0-inch LCD to compose, so a dual power-hungry resources fast empty a Nikon Coolpix S6‘s battery.
Appraisal. With a appealing Wave pattern and vast 3.0-inch LCD, a Nikon S6 is going to be tough to conflict once you’ve got one in your hands. Nikon’s In-Camera Red-Eye Fix, Face Priority AF, and D-Lighting encouragement join a 11 Scene modes and 4 Scene Assist modes to make still photography a pleasure. Add a far-reaching preference of Movie modes and a Voice recorder mode and a Coolpix S6 is as useful as it is poetic to behold. The vast LCD is a good theatre for a slip uncover choice as good as Picmotion presentations. And being means to broadcast stored and live images wirelessly is a good convenience.
The Nikon Coolpix S6 has a good operation of apertures for a digicam, not relying wholly on shiver speed to adjust exposure. The 3x visual Nikkor ED potion lens captures frail images. we competence cite a reduction jam-packed design (particularly blue skies), yet tone was generally accurate. It would be good to have some-more than ISO 400 and to use that in non-flash Scene modes yet that isn’t a understanding breaker. Image peculiarity is what depends when all is pronounced and done, and a Coolpix S6 delivers.
The Nikon Coolpix S6 ships with a following equipment in a box:
Small digicams are not famous for their design quality. The Nikon Coolpix S6 starts from that grounds yet taps into some intelligent wiring to recompense for a compromises. As a result, a Coolpix S6 is as appealing for a design peculiarity as it is for a styling.
It’s an eye catcher, no doubt. The call pattern brings a balmy S-curve to camera design. With no buttons or levers extending from it, it’s simply slipped into a slot so it’s with we when we wish to take a picture. And when we light adult that 3.0-inch LCD with your images, it’s even some-more attractive. Especially when we ask it to chuck an unpretentious Pictmotion display together.
Between constraint and playback, a S6 provides a lot of picture-taking intelligence. The ED potion creates a many of a S6’s tiny lens. The Feature System provides Nikon exclusives like face showing automobile focusing, in-camera red-eye removal, and D-Lighting. The Scene modes are simply accessed, generally Portrait, that has a possess button. Everything else is fun to find with a new rotary multi-selector. In short, it’s a intelligent choice — and therefore a Dave’s Pick.
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