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Nikon Coolpix S3100 - Test shots: Zoom, Contrast and Colour

By Gavin Stoker



Our Score:


Here are some general test shots taken with the Nikon S3100 to give an idea of performance ability when it comes to image quality, dynamic range, colour rendition and the focal range provided.


The S3100 can focus as close as 10cm from your subject, which, whilst not exactly class leading, is again adequate for the money being asked. Here, with 'standard' colour option selected the colours are if anything a little more muted than we recall them being in the subject at the time; luckily then there is also a Vivid colour option to provide an in-camera boost as and when needed.


The Nikon's naturalistic colour rendition can suit some subjects better than others - as here - but overall we feel this image from the camera is a little flat, plus we've totally lost detail in the sky here, the S3100 exposing for foreground detail instead.


By way of contrast then here's the same subject with Vivid colour mode selected which has produced a punchier shot overall, even if the colour on the horse is now a little 'warm' for our personal tastes - so it's worth experimenting a bit.


When the Nikon does get it right and focus, exposure and colour rendition come together in perfect harmony - and this is one of the closest examples of that we got - then the results can actually transcend what one might expect from a camera retailing for just over £100.


Overall Score


Scores In Detail

  • Value 9
  • Image Quality 8


December 22, 2011, 3:34 am

I bought my Nikon S3100 because I was impressed with its slim dimensions, and its wide angle zoom lens. However I only owned it for 6 days. During that time it seemed to be incapable of getting much more than 50% of the pictures I took in focus. This was despite my trying all the different autofocus modes, and being careful to hold the camera as steady as possible. When the S3100 got a picture in focus the quality was pretty good, but I found I couldn't trust it. I have been dabbling in photography for 55 years and can't remember owning a camera as disappointing as this Nikon. I am prepared to accept that I got a duff one, but I didn't want to take the risk of trying another S3100 and finding that to be duff also, so when I returned the S3100 to the shop I bought a Fuji model instead which I have found to be absolutely first class.


March 18, 2013, 3:04 am

You had a bad one. My wife got one a year ago and it is an absolute delight. $69 at Costco didn't hurt either.

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