Amazon.com: Customer Reviews: Nikon Coolpix S70 12.1MP Digital Camera with 3.5-inch OLED Touch Screen and 5x Wide Angle Optical Vibration Reduction (VR) Zoom (Champagne & Beige)
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on September 30, 2009
I love everything about this camera, except.... it takes a terrible picture.

The good:
The form factor is great
I like the way you slide the cover to open the lens and turn the camera on. Makes turning on fast and easy.
The touch screen is great. Very easy to change settings. Screen is responsive. You can touch where you want to focus, which is really cool.
The ability to shoot in 16:9 ratio is nice, but you're limited to 8MP in that mode.

The Bad
This camera just wouldn't take a good picture. Outside in daylight I could get a pretty good photo, but anything indoors was poor at best. Even indoors during the day when there's decent light. After taking my first set of shots I assumed I must be doing something wrong, so I read the manual, tried all the different "scenes", I tried adjusting ISO, resolution, etc.

Granted, I'm a fairly novice user, so perhaps a more experienced pro could get a better picture out of this camera. I finally pulled out my old Canon SD200 3.2MP camera that I was looking to replace. I took many photos side by side. I never took the Canon off "auto" mode and I tweaked the Nikon a million ways. Virtually every time the Canon was sharper, and more color accurate.

So, I thouht maybe I got a bad camera. I went to Best Buy and tried their display model. You could see on the camera screen that the images just weren't that great. Maybe if I didn't have a side by side comparison it wouldn't have been so noticable, but I really expected this Nikon to be better than my very old Canon.

If anyone believes it's the operator and not the camera I'm more than open to advice, because I loved everything else about this camera. I did return it, but would buy it again if I found out it was just operator error, however, I really don't think it was my error.
1212 comments|155 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on October 1, 2009
The above reviewer hit the nail on the head, Great design, functionality, touchscreen is the only way to go...
But, the camera will not take a sharp photo. I took my card into the store and shot numerous people and signs at all iso's
and image styles and basically I got mush. I brought my card home and opened it in Photoshop and no amount of tweeking or sharpening could save these images. It boggles my mind that a company like Nikon will release such a camera.
Look for this $400 camera to be $125 by Christmas. Hint to Nikon, all the features in the world won't sell a camera if it won't take a decent image.
44 comments|70 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on October 31, 2009
When I first read the specs on this camera I was very excited about getting my hands on it. I was especially interested in the OLED touch screen and the compact lens design. I went ahead and purchased the camera despite the mixed reviews it has received so far.

There are several problems with this camera. First, I took a number of shots both indoor and out on several settings and the picture quality is not very good. The pictures taken on my old 5 MP Minolta Dimage are far superior to this camera. Second, the design of the camera makes it almost completely unusable in normal shooting situations. The OLED screen takes up the entire back of the camera and is very touch sensitive. I found myself inadvertently activating functions without intending to. Also, the location of the lens is so close to the side of the camera my fingers continually ended up getting in the photo. So between the touchscreen and the lens location you end up with a continual camera holding balancing act that you can't win.

Overall a great feature set, but less than adequate picture quality and design. I returned it and purchased the Panasonic DMC-ZS3, and having now tried it out it beats the Nikon hands down.
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on September 18, 2009
The new S70 lives up to all of the Nikon claims. Like most Nikon cameras I have owned, it functioned perfectly right out of the box. Having been highly disappointed with the previous S60, this new S70 seems to have corrected all of the shortcomings of the S60 and much more. The new OLED touch screen is a joy to use - sensitive and responsive. The screen visibility and clarity is excellent under all lighting conditions. Nikon also substituted a more robust battery which in combination with the OLED panel should extend camera use between charges.

Perhaps more important is the clarity and sharpness of the images taken with the S70. They are impressively sharp and clear under magnification. The menus are intuitive and easy to navigate. The touch screen focus and shutter release function is a nice touch. The simplified and enhanced in-camera cropping and retouch functions are well done and welcome additions. The Easy Auto mode handles very well all of the major camera settings and functions required for a good picture when a quick "point & shoot" situation arises. I would have preferred however an out-of-camera battery recharging system as I usually charge and carry a spare battery. I will be purchasing an external charger.

I have owned Nikon film and digital cameras for the last 25 years and I consider my new S70 to be a very worthwhile addition. It is stylish, functional, fun to use, and takes great photos. When you need a high quality pocket sized camera, you should take a close look at this one. I would highly recommend the S70.
1919 comments|109 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
I think this is a great camera and have achieved some terrific pictures with it. The problem, as stated in another review, is that the image sensor does not do well with high ISOs. I find that setting it to max out at around 800 yields the best photos. The VR zoom is a huge benefit to keep photos in focus. I recommend using a fast memory card to reduce (and eliminate) shutter lag.

The only drawback is the touchscreen in the back. When I first started using the camera I found myself touching it inadvertantly and doing things I didn't intend. With a small amount of experience with the camera I don't do that anymore and I have learned where to put my fingers to avoid the touchscreen. The screen itself is beautiful - among the very best I have seen on a camera back (I suspect it is similar to the one I have on my D3000 Nikon SLR - although that isn't a touch screen). The touch sensitivity cannot be altered (as far as I can tell), so it still poses an issue when I you hand the camera to someone else to take a photo.

Overall, I really like the camera and it takes nice photos when set correctly. The touchscreen and lack of quality high ISO result in the deduction of one star - I would probably have given 3 1/2 if I could, but the high quality of Nikon products generally biases me towards rounding up, not down.
0Comment|22 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on January 3, 2010
My wife bought me the S70 for Christmas, she saw a commercial on TV and thought I'd enjoy the camera. As a disclaimer, I should mention that I am a professional photographer and have been since the mid-70s. I know what shutter speeds and F stops are and how they can affect image quality and final look.

I do not agree with the reviewers that talk about poor image quality, I do agree with the ones that suggest you learn how to use the camera. It is true that in low light situations, the camera is not always accurate with it's touch screen auto focus. I have found that using the shutter release instead totally solves that problem. I've also taken a few shots of my thumb because of the lens placement, but hey, they were sharp and well exposed.

The iPod-like viewing of the photos on the screen with the swipe action is brilliant. I've been using it in my business as my "Polaroid" shots to quickly show clients camera angles without them messing with my other equipment. I'm also involved in a construction project now and the camera has been great to create my punch list, way better than writing everything down.

I'm not too crazy about the in-camera charging of the battery, so I purchased another battery and external charger; always a good idea anyway.

I first looked at the S70 as a toy to just have some fun with, but I have been completely satisfied with this camera and find myself putting it in my pocket whenever I leave the house. I'm confident it will produce what you are looking for in a point and shoot and I'm also glad my wife saw that commercial...
1010 comments|27 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on October 31, 2009
When I first read the specs on this camera I was very excited about getting my hands on it. I was especially interested in the OLED touch screen and the compact lens design. I went ahead and purchased the camera despite the mixed reviews it has received so far.

There are several problems with this camera. First, I took a number of shots both indoor and out on several settings and the picture quality is not very good. The pictures taken on my old 5 MP Minolta Dimage are far superior to this camera. Second, the design of the camera makes it almost completely unusable in normal shooting situations. The OLED screen takes up the entire back of the camera and is very touch sensitive. I found myself inadvertently activating functions without intending to. Also, the location of the lens is so close to the side of the camera my fingers continually ended up getting in the photo. So between the touchscreen and the lens location you end up with a continual camera holding balancing act that you can't win.

Overall a great feature set, but less than adequate picture quality and design. I returned it and purchased the Panasonic DMC-ZS3, and having now tried it out it beats the Nikon hands down.
0Comment|27 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on October 27, 2009
The features are great, the design of the touch screen is clever, but if you default to the touch screen, it is way too easy to mistakenly touch the screen and take photos you don't want. But, most importantly, I'm surprised by the other reviewers who say the photos are great as I think the photo quality is very poor. I've tried various auto options and have tested all the manual settings and cannot get a really good photo. I'm not new to Nikon - I've had other Nikon Coolpix cameras that I loved and I also have the Nikon D300 SLR and have been a Nikon owner for 40 years but this one is the worst...sorry to say!
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on November 22, 2009
I have not tried the S70 yet (so disregard star rating) but I have noticed several reviews with frustrations about poor image quality. I also saw in the CNET Editor's review that they suggested that the user sets the Auto ISO limit to 80-200 for best results in most conditions and 80-400 max under difficult lighting conditions. Anyone who is experiencing photo quality issues might want to try that to see if it makes a big improvement. I expect that it will make a big difference since CNET said the pictures were "very good for a snapshot camera" once those settings have been changed. My guess is for some reason the camera is trying to use a ridiculously high ISO setting (1200-6400) and producing predictably grainier photos as a result. As Wikipedia explains regarding ISO speeds, "In both digital and film photography, the reduction of exposure corresponding to use of higher [ISO] sensitivities generally leads to reduced image quality (via coarser film grain or higher image noise of other types)." If that is in fact the problem it would still be a design flaw but one with perhaps a simple and very tolerable workaround.

From CNET:
"The photo quality from the S70 is very good for a snapshot camera...The camera lets you limit the auto ISO range to either 80-200 or 80-400. If you're in daylight or bright conditions, I recommend locking it down to 80-200. Again, it did perform well through ISO 400, but it's at its best below ISO 200."

Good luck with that workaround.

Also, anyone who has problems tapping the screen by accident should probably set the camera to only use the shutter button.

I still like the specs of this camera so plan to check it out at the local Best Buy with my own SD card and I will be playing with these settings and I will update my review once I have.
11 comment|36 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on December 29, 2009
I don't normally write reviews on products in Amazon, but after receiving this camera for christmas and then seeing all the negative reviews, I had do write something.

All the negative reviews are mostly related to picture quality. Granted, when I got the camera out and started snapping pictures, I was freaked out, because most all of the pictures looked pretty horrible. I tweaked settings and tried indoors and outdoors and most all came out fuzzy.

But that's just the playback on the camera!! I plugged it into my laptop and transferred them to my computer and all of the pictures look great. While it sucks that the onscreen playback blows, what matters is the quality of the actual picture files. I'm thinking all the negative reviews about picture quality are from those that are simply looking at the photos on the camera, not their computer.

Put 'em on your computer!! I probably would've given this camera 4 stars, but figured I had to do something about the average rating....
11 comment|17 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse

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