Nikon Coolpix S1000pj review: Nikon Coolpix S1000pj

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Typical Price: £350.00

Nikon Coolpix S1000pj

(Part #: CNETNikon Coolpix S1000pj)
3.5 stars

CNET Editors' Rating

The Good Projector sounds stupid in theory but is quite impressive in practice; included projector stand and remote; really easy to use.

The Bad Weak projector; expensive; pretty ordinary as a camera.

The Bottom Line The Nikon Coolpix S1000pj is pricy and its projector is rather feeble, but, if you like your camera to sport wacky and original features, you might just be hooked

7.5 Overall

A digital camera with a built-in projector? Someone at Nikon's been thinking so far outside the box that they don't even know where the box is anymore. The 12.1-megapixel Coolpix S1000pj might be just the ticket for business types looking to give presentations, old-fashioned slideshow fans and anyone else with about £350 to spare.

Projected joy
The projector's much more fun than you might think. You need a darkened room, because the projector's output is just 10 lumen (1 lumen is the brightness of a candle). Even then, the projected image becomes pretty dim if you move the camera more than a couple of metres away from your projection surface. But the projector's such a novelty that it's easy to overlook the limitations and just gawp with a mixture of nostalgia and fascination. The projected image's resolution is limited to VGA only (640x480 pixels), but the image isn't bright or big enough for anyone to notice.

The S1000pj delivers colourful and high-contrast images that have real impact, although much of that is lost during projection because of the limited brightness (click image to enlarge)

Nikon's got it all worked out. The S1000pj comes with a projector stand (okay, a tiny piece of plastic to keep the camera upright and steady) and a dinky little remote control. You can close the curtains, sit back in your armchair and subject your audience to hours of holiday photos without having to lift a finger. You can zoom in to look at details, zoom out to check thumbnails and play back movies too.

Apart from that, the S1000pj's a pretty good camera in its own right. You get a 5x wideangle zoom (non-extending, so it'll still slide in your pocket when it's on) and Nikon's latest photo technology.

The S1000pj sports a 69mm (2.7-inch) LCD display

Among this technology is an anti-blur system, including optical and digital stabilisation, and motion-detection capability; a 'smart portrait' system, including a smile timer and blink-warning feature; and subject-tracking autofocus, which can follow subjects across and around the frame surprisingly well.

Average images
Some of the negatives have been covered already. The S1000pj's projections are far too dim and small to compete with a proper digital projector, but then the convenience and the novelty value still weigh heavily in its favour.

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