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Nikon COOLPIX P100 Ken McMahon, January 2011
 

Nikon COOLPIX P100 results : Real-life resolution / Sharpness mid-range / Sharpness telephoto / High ISO Noise


Nikon COOLPIX P100 vs Panasonic FZ45 / FZ40 vs Canon PowerShot SX30 IS Real-life resolution (tele)

 
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To compare real-life performance with the lenses zoomed all the way in, we shot this scene with the Nikon COOLPIX P100, the Panasonic Lumix FZ45 / FZ40 and the Canon PowerShot SX30 IS within a few moments of each other using their best quality JPEG settings.

The lenses on each camera were set to the maximum telephoto end of their zoom range. For the COOLPIX P100 this is 678mm equivalent, for the Lumix FZ45 / FZ40 it's an equivalent of 600m and for the Canon Powershot SX30 IS it's 840mm.

All three cameras were set to Program mode at the lowest available ISO sensitivity - 160 ISO on the Nikon COOLPIX P100 and 80 ISO on the Lumix FZ45 / FZ40 and the PowerShot SX30 IS.

The above image was taken with the COOLPIX P100 in Program mode. The lens was set to 120 mm (678mm equivalent) and the metering selected an exposure of 1/670th of a second at f8 with an ISO setting of 160. The original 3648x2736 pixel image had a file size of 3.95MB.

Again, the Nikon COOLPIX P100 in Program auto exposure mode has selected an aperture of f8 for this telephoto shot and, again, by comparison with the crops from the Lumix FZ45 / FZ40 and PowerShot SX30 IS, the COOLPIX crops look soft and lacking in detail - no doubt an impact of diffraction at the selected aperture of f8. Having said that, the image quality of the COOLPIX P100 at the telephoto end of it's range is pretty respectable. Despite the softness, there's a good level of detail there and the second two crops you can see as much detail in the roof tiles as in the Lumix FZ45 / FZ40 or PowerShot SX30 IS crops.

So, if you want to squeeze the best possible image quality from the COOLPIX P10's lens, we'd suggest setting either Aperture priority or Manual exposure mode and selecting a wider aperture than the one frequently chosen by the camera's Program auto exposure mode.

If you haven't done so already, be sure to take a look at our wide-angle resolution and mid range resolution test pages before seeing how they compare at higher sensitivities in our High ISO Noise results.



Nikon COOLPIX P100
 
Panasonic Lumix FZ45 / FZ40
 
Canon PowerShot SX30 IS
120mm (678mm) f8, 160 ISO
108mm (600mm) f5.2, 80 ISO
150.5mm (840mm) f5.8, 80 ISO
120mm (678mm) f8, 160 ISO
108mm (600mm) f5.2, 80 ISO
150.5mm (840mm) f5.8, 80 ISO
120mm (678mm) f8, 160 ISO
108mm (600mm) f5.2, 80 ISO
150.5mm (840mm) f5.8, 80 ISO


Nikon COOLPIX P100 results : Real-life resolution / Sharpness mid-range / Sharpness telephoto / High ISO Noise



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