Well after about three years searching for my perfect P&S (point and shoot) camera, I have finally found it. I even bought it for myself for my birthday! Yeah, me. It is the Nikon Coolpix P6000. Some of the features that I required when searching for a small, light camera that would fit in my purse or pocket included a view finder (LCD displays really drain the battery), the ability to shoot in RAW mode and a Manual setting. Now, one would think with all the cameras available on the market today that it would be EASY to find a camera with all three…nope. Darn near impossible. I shoud have known that Nikon would be the company to provide all of my requisite features. Nikon has been manufacturing cameras for the discerning professional for decades. This beautifully made camera is sharp too. In macro mode, I was a scan few milimeters from the center of a beautiful lily.
As a photography teacher for Armstrong Atlantic State University’s Continuing Education Department, I see lots of different models of cameras. Many of the cameras I have recommended to my students are great for them. As with any purchase what is good for one person, is not necessarily good for another. My students do not need some of the features that I crave but I admit I have been pretty impressed with a few. The Panasonic Lumix models sport a Leica lens which is top of the line in camera lenses. The are small, lightweight and take great pictures, but lack the additional features that I craved.
I am a control freak and despite the cool features like Color Accent and Blink Detection, I wanted more basic control. One of the first things I tell my beginning digital students, is the LCD displays will drain your battery faster than anything. Without a viewfinder, the LCD is constantly on and therefore a constant drain. Second, the quality of a JPG image deteriorates the first time it is compressed and saved. That is why JPG/JPEG files are lossy file types. Unlike PNG, RAW, PSD and other files types that preserve image color and detail that are lossless file types. So, being able to shoot images in RAW is essential to me.
Additonal features that impress me on the P6000 include GPS information for photos (beats carrying around a norebook, although I do it anyway) and the ability to connect to the network via a LAN cable. I can also customize not one but two user mode (preferences and settings I use most) and a quick access Fn button that I can set to make changes to the menu option I use most frequently. I can also attach an external flash unit or slave via the hotshoe. Shall I go on? How about the Active D-Lighting (preserves the details in the high and low light areas when ON) and so many more…
Although I still prefer slide film over digital most days of the week, it is hard to beat a small, sleek, camera such as the P6000 designed with the professional in mind!