Nikon CoolPix L24 Camera Review
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The CoolPix L24 is an affordable camera that delivers reasonable underwater performance. It’s far from the top of the line, but will provide everything you need for basic underwater digital photography. No budget compact will allow the kind of detailed control that a more advanced camera delivers, but not everyone needs to play with detailed focus and exposure lengths. If all you want is a point and shoot digital camera for underwater use, the CoolPix L24 is a good choice.
It’s not a waterproof camera in itself and nor does it come with an underwater housing as standard, but the L24 works well with an Ikelite Ultra Compact Waterproof Housing. The controls on the L24 are simple, and almost all of them can be fully manipulated when underwater. If you don’t want to buy a camera purely for underwater photography, choosing one that can be easily used with a housing is the best way forward. Of course, there are dozens of reasonably priced compacts that can be used with a housing, so why choose this one?
The internal flash will still work fine inside the housing- diffusers and deflectors are available. While the L24’s flash won’t deliver the kind of results an external flash or strobe setup would, this camera does have a better and brighter flash than most of its competitors. It’ll reach a little further and perform better in darker waters than almost anything else of similar size and simplicity.
There’s A lot to Like about the Nikon CoolPix L24
A maximum 14 megapixel resolution means that your best photos can be blown up to around 16″x20″ without loss of quality, and it has a large LCD screen. At 3″ it’s much more generous than the screen on most cheaper compact cameras- that makes it easier to see what is and isn’t in the frame in tricky conditions underwater.
Battery life is comparable to similar models (the Canon A800 for example) and a replacement pair of AA batteries can be obtained almost anywhere in the world so there is no need to take a charger with you on holiday. With really good quality rechargeable AAs you could get up to 600 shots per pair.
There is a movie mode, although the resolution isn’t outstanding. It can deliver up to 30 frames per second at 640 x 480 pixels- not amazing professional quality but good enough to share with friends on YouTube.
It also has an advanced image stabilization system, which comes in very handy. Often it’s hard to stay perfectly steady underwater. Wave action, currents, and buoyancy all make it far more difficult than it might be on dry land. All too often a little movement completely ruins a good shot. This camera can handle more than most, and there is also an inbuilt capacity to deal with moving subjects and vibration. The L24 has no less than three different anti-blurring technologies in place and together they can really help keep images sharp and clear.
All things considered, the Nikon CoolPix L24 is a good entry level camera. When coupled with a suitable housing it’s capable of delivering good photo quality underwater. It’s simple to use, reasonably priced, and good value for money.
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This is a guest review, courtesy of Mozaik Underwater Cameras, where you can find all your underwater photography needs.