Tuesday, February 19, 2013
Toolbox: Big Zoom Compacts
Get extensive focal range and high-tech features in a camera that’s smaller and lighter than a typical telephoto lens
|This Article Features Photo Zoom|
Nikon Coolpix P510
Another option for incredible zoom range is Nikon's P510, with a 42x optical zoom spanning 24mm to 1000mm*, and up to 2000mm with digital zoom enabled. It also includes a close-up mode, letting you focus as close as 0.4 inches. The P510 incorporates lens-shift optical Vibration Reduction.
In addition to the large Vari-Angle LCD, there's an electronic eye-level viewfinder that provides approximately 100% coverage—a nice alternative when shooting outside in bright conditions makes the LCD harder to view.
The P510 captures its 16-megapixel images in JPEG format at about 5 frames per second. In movie mode, it can record full HD 1080p at 30 frames per second with stereo sound and continuous AF.
Do you use geolocation features in your photo software to organize shots by where they were taken? If so, the P510 can automatically tag photos and videos with built-in GPS. Want to capture the full impact of the locations you visit? The camera's Easy Panorama mode automatically merges multiple frames into a 180- or 360-degree panoramic photo.
In addition to standard exposure modes like program and shutter- or aperture-priority, the P510 includes 18 Scene modes tailored to a variety of subjects and shooting situations. The P510 also offers in-camera editing, allowing you to crop, soften skin, apply filter effects and more. Estimated Street Price: $349.
Olympus SP-820UZ iHS
With its 40x zoom, the SP-820UZ iHS delivers a focal range of 22.4 to 896mm*. You can double that to 80x, or 1792mm, by enabling digital zoom.
The 14-megapixel camera can capture full-resolution images at 3 frames per second, or you can opt for a much faster 30 frames per second at 3-megapixel resolution. The SP-820UZ iHS also can record full HD 1080p video. To keep stills and video sharp when shooting handheld, Dual Image Stabilization employs sensor-shift correction and boosts ISO for faster shutter speeds.
Smart Panorama mode lets you quickly create panoramas easily; just trigger the shutter and steadily pan across the scene, and the camera does the rest. When shooting into the sun, the Backlight HDR Adjustment makes multiple exposures and merges them into a single image with extended dynamic range.
Like other Olympus cameras, you have multiple Magic Art Filters to apply to your images for unique looks, including Pop Art, Watercolor, Soft Focus and many more, some of which can be applied to video clips, too. There's also a Beauty mode, which automatically smooths portrait wrinkles, and a Beauty Make-Up mode, which lets you simulate the effects of adding eye shadow, teeth whitening and more, all in-camera. Estimated Street Price: $329.
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