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Nikon Coolpix 5000 5MP Digital Camera with 3x Optical Zoom

3.1 out of 5 stars 69 customer reviews

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  • 5.2 megapixel sensor creates 2,560 x 1,920 images for prints at 11 x 14 and beyond
  • 3x optical (plus 4x digital) zoom lens with autofocus
  • Included 32 MB CompactFlash card holds approximately 18 images at default resolution; camera is Microdrive compatible
  • Uses proprietary lithium-ion rechargeable battery (included)
  • Connects with Macs and PCs via USB port
4 used from $39.99



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The 5.2 megapixel sensor creates 2,560 x 1,920 images for prints at 11 x 14 .3x optical (plus 4x digital) zoom lens with autofocus.

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Once again, Nikon has upped the ante in the world of digital cameras with the introduction of the Coolpix 5000. Its 5-megapixel sensor, 28-85mm zoom lens, and extensive controls make this a great choice for discriminating photographers seeking a digital camera with filmlike quality and SLR-style manual controls.

In a departure from previous flagship Coolpix models, the 5000 is very compact (much smaller than the older 900-series models) and looks more or less like a traditional point-and-shoot. It does not employ the trademark Coolpix swiveling-lens design; instead, on this model, it's the LCD display that does the swiveling. The screen can be flipped out from the camera body and rotated for easy viewing from any shooting angle--it even works for a self-portrait. An added bonus to this design is the ability to tuck the vulnerable display inward for protection when the camera is not in use. Of course, images can also be composed by looking through the traditional optical viewfinder.

The Coolpix 5000 features a 3x zoom lens--the most common power for zoom digital cameras. It's the range that sets the Coolpix apart--its widest setting is an unusually wide 28mm, perfectly matching the wide-angle setting on most SLR cameras. Almost every other digital camera's wide-angle starts at 35 or 38mm. The all-glass lens features nine elements in seven groups.

Power is provided by a proprietary lithium-ion EN-EL1 battery rated for approximately 100 minutes of use (battery and charger are included). If you're worried about getting caught in the middle of nowhere with a dead battery, the camera also uses a standard disposable lithium 2CR5 camera battery. Unused lithium batteries hold their power for years, so you'll probably want to toss one of these into your camera bag as a backup. For hardcore photographers, there's also an optional power pack/hand grip that uses six AA batteries and offers several times the power capacity of the rechargeable pack.

We've come to expect Coolpix cameras to offer an extensive set of manual controls, and the 5000 offers sports than we can list here, including shutter speeds from 1/4,000 to 8 seconds, shutter priority, aperture priority, and full manual modes, manual focus and white balance, ISO ratings from 100 to 800, and numerous other settings to let photographers capture any shot they can dream up. See our product specs for more details.

An extensive selection of accessories has helped to make Coolpix cameras favorites with serious photographers. From wide angle and telephoto add-on lenses to an adapter that lets you use the camera as a scanner for your slides and negatives, Nikon offers enough add-ons to create a system that meets all of your needs.

Shutter lag--the delay between the time you press the button and the moment the camera actually captures the photo--is a problem with most digital cameras, and the Coolpix 5000 is no exception. The camera can take over a second to snap your picture after pressing the button, which can be an unacceptably long time, especially if you're trying to take a picture of a quick-moving subject. Most of this delay can be eliminated by prefocusing--composing your shot, then pressing the shutter button halfway down to allow the camera to adjust the focus and metering. When you're ready to take the picture, press the button the rest of the way down, and the shutter will snap almost instantly.

Movie mode captures movie clips with audio at resolutions of 320 x 240 pixels at approximately 15 frames per second for up to 40 seconds. This feature won't replace your camcorder, but it's perfect for when you just want to capture a quick movie and e-mail it to a friend or relative.

The Coolpix 5000 comes with a rechargeable EN-EL1 battery and charger, a 32 MB CompactFlash card, video and USB cables, lens cap, neck strap, and an impressive software suite that includes Genuine Fractals LE. The camera is covered by a one-year warranty.


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