If you are one of those people, who like to live your life adventurously and you have a few escapades that you might not be able to record, the Nikon AW100 camera in the rugged point and shoot series is there for you to explain your tale and capture your breathtaking moments. The 16.0 megapixel camera is the first entry in the series, but it is well resistant to the rough treatment. The lone survivor in the series is prepared to take shock till 5 feet, water resistant to 33 feet and freezing till 10 degree. Other functionality such as the built in GPS, digital compass and built in world map is very handy for the people who always have the habit of getting lost. Also the feature such as geotagging and documenting your travel is provided in the Nikon ViewNX2 software.
|Effective pixels||16.0 megapixels|
|Image sensor||CMOS sensor|
|Digital zoom||Maximum 4x (35mm  format equivalent to approx. 560 mm)|
|ISO sensitivity (Standard output sensitivity)||ISO 125, 200, 400, 800, 1600, 3200 (4608 x 3456), Auto (ISO 125 to 800), Fix range auto (ISO 125 to 400, 125 to 800)|
|LCD monitor||7.5 cm (3-in.), approx. 460k-dot, wide-viewing angle|
|Storage media||Internal memory (approx. 83 MB) SD/SDHC/SDXC memory card|
|Movie||Full HD 1080p: 1920 x 1080 (30 fps), HD 720p: 1280 x 720 (30 fps), TV movie 640: 640 x 480 (30 fps), Small size 320: 320 x 240 (30 fps)|
|Power sources||Rechargeable Li-on battery|
|Dimensions (width × height × depth)||Approx. 110.1 x 64.9 x 22.8 mm / 4.4 x 2.6 x 0.9 in.|
|Weight||Approx. 178g / 6.3 oz.|
Image sensor and processor, Zoom and the Lens:
The image sensor used in the camera is 1/2.3 type RGB CMOS sensor which gives you very crisp image at 16 megapixel, the expeed C2 processor which is used in the higher end model of Nikon is used for 1080p HD video encoding, improving image distortion check ,face detection, noise reduction .
The Lens used in the model is optical 5x zoom Nikkor lens that consist of focal length of 5.0 – 25mm, the equivalent zoom is 28- 140mmm which is pretty decent and the glass element is ED(Extra Low Dispersion ) that is compensating the color fringing even at the High Magnifications and also reduce the color aberration in image .
Camera Design and ease of use:
Nikon AW 100 has gone beyond the traditional physical attribute of the point and shoot camera, the large knob on the extreme left side of the camera and long button on the left are something you rarely find in point and shoot.
A failure by Nikon in design, the camera button are very tightly spaced which eventually can cause accidental press. The button are highly spongy and unresponsive may be due to the waterproof seal inside them, surface is very much slippery when wet and can be reason of the slip. The very smart and necessary feature in the camera is that camera battery, memory card storage, mini USB port and HDMI are under the one well protective roof from water, but the big slider in right side of camera can be closed but not locked. The outer body of the camera is made from the tough plastic metal and there is a metallic plate that is available in the variety of bright colors orange blue black. The 5x zoom is housed inside the boy.
Battery, Storage and the Connectivity:
Camera comes with the rechargeable lithium lion battery which is 1050 mah which is average and much more juice is expected for such a travelling camera. The internal memory given by the Nikon is 83mb so definitely a memory card is required, the format of card supported are SD, SDHC, SDHX. The camera has been given a USB 2.0 port for transferring your personal pictures and video to the Laptop or the PC. The HDMI support in the camera provide you the advantage of seeing the Images and video in HDTV by connecting with cable.
The time taken by the camera to power on is 1.4 second that is not very good but in between average and good. Shutter lag is good but not the fastest one, at wide angle and telephoto it is 0.31 second. Pre focus shutter lag is fastest with only 0.17 second. Cycle time is 1.58 second for every photo taken. The burst mode with full high resolution is 7.1 frame per second and the buffer is only 3 frame. The focus system in camera can focus just above the 18 foot candle level. The average number of shot taken by the camera is 250 shot which is very low for this class of camera. The transfer speed while connecting with the USB is 6158 Kbyte per second is very fast.
Color performance is very good, bright red and blue color is seen while testing and saturation is typical with some hue shift can be seen in orange, green, red. If you seen color composition as an overall you will get good color quality. The white balance in the camera is very good. Although the camera is very good in full light condition but you will see a disappointment if you purchasing this particularly for diving photography. Detail in the photo are very good and there is little softening in the edges. The purple fringing is seen in various situation. The macro mode is pretty good and images can be taken just far from 1 cm Till the ISO 800 the image is not grainy and the noise level is below 1.5.
The video capability is 1080 p and camera can zoom in and zoom out while recording. But the focusing system while zooming is not very great and camera loses the focus sometime while zooming. Video quality is quite sharp.
Global positioning system in the camera can be mapped on the screen and record in Exif details of the camera. Positioning system can be synchronized through the satellite. Position system is updated every 30 minute when camera is off.
The camera is with the very tough build especially designed to survive from the worse consequences, the all-weather credentials are very adequate and respectable to the standard expected. Performance such as auto focus image quality is average, But with the market prospect the camera is bit let down from the Nikon because with Nikon higher standard are expected in this price range and secondly there are various competitor for the camera who has to offer more in this range.