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Showing posts with label body. Show all posts
Showing posts with label body. Show all posts


Nikon Coolpix A VS Sigma Dp1 Merrill

Nikon Coolpix A Previews

With the same sensor as the acclaimed D7000 DSLR, the Coolpix A certainly promises great things

The Coolpix A borrows the Graphic user interface from NIkon's DSLR line. as well as the sensor from the D7000 DSLR, and fits them into a slender, pocket-able body.

Nikon has developed a new 18,5mm optic for the model, with a 28mm-equivalent focal length and a respectable maximum aperture of f/2.8 while the inclusion of a hot-shoe on the top plate ensures compatibility with the company's family of Speed-light flashguns in addition to a handful of other accessories.

The camera goes on to list many other features commonly found in its DSLRs, Including Raw shooting in Nikon's NEF format, a 3in LCD screen with a 921k-dot resolution, and the Virtual Horizon levelling feature. Full HD videos can also be REcorded. With control over exposure on hand.

As is common among such cameras the Coolpix A offers a moderate level of customisation, which includes two user-specific settings on the mode dial and function buttons on the camera's front and rear plates. Those wanting to manually focus may do so with the ring which encircles the lens, while anyone with a keen interest in time-lapse photography will be pleased to learn of a built in interval-meter.


Anyone familiar with Nikon's DSLR line will be able to start shooting with the coolpix A with little bother, thanks to the adoption of the same interface. what they, or anyone else may find more difficult to uncover is the way of accessing the movie setting, which is bizarrely buried within the camera's Release mode settings (the closest you can get to convenience is to assign the Release mode to a Function button).

Although the buttons on the left side of the LCD necessitate two handed operation with the command dial, this soon becomes second nature. There's much to like elsewhere too, the camera powers up promptly with a gentle nudge of the collar around the shutter release button. and there's Virtually no delay before the camera's ready to shoot. The LCD screen is crisp and high in Contrast, and it shows plenty of detail which makes checking focus easy.

The autofocus system does tend to slow things down, however, bouncing back and forth more than expected before any confirmation. although in good light it's unlikely to be deemed "too" slow in poor light, meanwhile, the AF assist lamp does at least help to keep speeds reasonable.

Nikon has combined an aluminium alloy body with a magnesium top plate for the Coolpix A, and fashioned most of the dials out of metal too, At just shy of 300g when loaded with a battery and card the camera is certainly lighter than expected. and it's difficult to find any weaknesses around the body. Some may take umbrage at the lack of a more substantial grip, although the slim leatherette strip does at least help to keep size and weight down. One could argue the buttons on the rear don't protrude far away from the back plate, although all press positively into the camera.

Sigma DP1 Merrill Previews

With a totally different sensor from almost any other camera, does the DP1 Merrill offer anything special?

As with Sigma's other cameras, the DP1 Merrill uses a sensor based on the Foveon X3 Direct IMage technology, where by the extent to which wavelengths of light penetrate its silicon layers determine the colour. This differs from the more conventional method of capturing a single colour at each photo-site and interpolating the other two primary colours from neighbouring values.

Because of this. Sigma claims the camera has a 46MP sensor, by which it means there are there 15.3MP layers. although opening up such an image in an image editing program shows images to measure 14.75MP.

The rest of the camera's specs adhere to the more traditional enthusiast compact template. The 19mm f/2.8 prime lens equates to 28mm in 35mm term. while the 3in LCD screen bears a 920k-dot resolution. The body shares its magnesium alloy construction with many other enthusiast compacts, while full manual exposure control. Raw shooting and hot-shoe all feature too, although videos can only be recorded to a maximum VGA resolution (640 x 480) which is disappointing for a camera of the DP1 merrill's billing.


The camera turn on in around a second but it's only ready to focus and shoot after a further slight delay. the fact that it also doesn't sport a convenient built in lens cover (as on many other models) mean that the lens cap also needs to be removed before shooting, which makes start up a two stage process.

although the camera's 920k-dot LCD screen is capable of resolving fine detail, this is only realised when using the menus and playing back image, When composing-images, the feed shows significantly less detail, which is further compromised by artefacts, and colours are relatively desaturated when composing images too. ALl of this is disappointing when you consider the discerning user at which the camera is targeted, and makes checking accurate focus more difficult than it should be.

The menu system is difficult to fault though, its construction logical and descriptions clear and unabbreviated. The ease with which the command dial can be accessed by the forefinger also makes its navigation easy. while the QS button allows you to jump to and change eight commonly-used settings without entering the main menu, which speeds things up.

While a bulky body can sometimes benefit the way a camera handles, the portly DP1 Merrill's delivers a less than satisfactory handling experience. This is largely thanks to the lack of a proper grip of thumb rest, which makes the smooth body feel less secure in the hand than desired. this being said, the command dial is far easier to operate than on similar models given both its size and positioning, while the broad rear plate allows enough room for a well spaced set of controls There's also no doubting the camera's solidity, with its magnesium alloy body unyielding to any pressure.

How They Compare

Each Camera has its plus and minus points on its own, but how do they fare against each other?
These three cameras share many commonalities. Each has an APS-C sensor without an anti aliasing filter - the only notable difference here is Sigma's non standard Foveon X3 sensor architecture - as well as a lens with an effective focal length of 28mm and a maximum aperture of f/2.8 Each also has a 3in LCD screen. The DPI1 merrill is notable for being the only camera not to have an HD video mode, with its VGA video option an underwhelming substitute (although to many this won't be a deal breaker) it's also the only camera not to have a built in flash, which is particularly disappointing considering its dreadful high sensitivity performance.

Nikon Coolpix A Pros And Cons


- Noise Control
- very good LCD
- Great shot to shoot times
- Best video quality on test


- No dedicated movie button
- Focus can be slow at times
- Far too expensive


Sigma DP1 Merrill Pros And Cons


- Capuable of great detail
- Superb GUI
- OVersized mode dial makes changing certain settings easy


- Bulky body
- NO proper grip
- VGA videos
- Unsightly noise at higher ISOs



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