Deal 9: Hacking Photography mega-deal
In case you hadn’t noticed it, there has been a rush to the door of maxi zooms in compact digital cameras: Canon hit first, with a 35x, rapidly followed by a 30x model.
Examples at full wide and full tele: Nikon joins the throng with this camera, sedately traveling along with a 21x zoom that equates to a 35 SLR range of 25-525mm, which should satisfy many long lens lovers and Nikon devotees.
The L120 goes further and provides capture to a 14.1 megapixel CCD.
The L120’s body shape is an attractive, compact unit before power is activated. Lens extended, no more than 22mm is added to the unit’s depth.
The deeply set and noticeably textured speed grip provides a solid hold, with power switch sitting under the right thumb, zoom near to the right forefinger; single-handed operation is enjoyably comfortable.
New to digicams is an additional (left) side zoom control that aids steady two-handed operation of the camera. Once you use it you’ll wonder why nobody has come up with one before!
There is no optical finder but the rear LCD screen is a generous 7.5cm with a high 921,000 pixel resolution. Maximum JPEG image size is 4320×3240 pixels, resulting in a 37x27cm print.
Movies are adequately if not brilliantly served with a maximum res of 1280×720 pixels at 30fp. A welcome feature is the prominent movie record button, just south of the power button.
Beginners will appreciate the large collection of scene modes that can virtually guarantee successful capture of shots taken at the beach, at night, dusk/dawn etc.
Face detection in the L120 has taken a novel turn: not only can the camera sense a smiling face but it will also recognise the faces of dogs or cats.
Many travelers will welcome the use of easily available AA power cells (alkaline/lithium/NiMH) as the camera’s motive force, although I have to confess I was a little rattled when changing the memory card and managed to inadvertently dump all the batteries onto the floor!
And a note about the image stabiliser: image steadiness is achieved by means of a shifting image sensor combined with digital means for stills; movie shooting is stabilised by digital means only.
From ISO 80 to 800 I found all parameters to be acceptable in terms of noise, colour quality and definition.
At ISO 1600 definition dropped slightly while image noise was not objectionable.
Then at ISO 3200 and 6400 the bomb dropped: definition down, colour pretty awful and noise you could almost feel. ISO 6400 was unusable.
Then another problem: at ISO 3200 and 6400 the maximum image size fell to 2048×1536 pixels. When judging these two examples bear in mind that they undergo a lesser size reduction to conform with Internet sizing.
Quite quick: about two seconds from power on to first shot; follow-ons about a second apart.
Very slight barrel distortion was visible at the wide end of the zoom; at the tele end almost nil pincushion distortion. An excellent performance.
Quality: the 21x zoom is certainly an enjoyable lens to use but, as I have mentioned before with these maxi zooms, you bang your head against atmospheric haze when using the tele end of the zoom. Use with care.
In other respects, the L120 is a respectable picture taker with above average definition and colour capture.
Why you would buy it: you’re a Nikon lover; you want a compact maxi zoom; the price!; the price!.
Why you wouldn’t: you want more exposure control.
This is an ideal companion to a DSLR, easy to stow and use.
Image Sensor: 14.1 million effective pixels.
Metering: 256 segment matrix, centre-weighted average, spot.
Sensor Size: 11mm CCD.
Lens: Nikkor f3.5-5.8/4.5-94.5mm (25-525mm as 35 SLR equivalent).
Shutter Speed: 4 to 1/4000 second.
Continuous Shooting: 0.7 images/second (total 19 4320×3240 pixel shots); 15.3 images/second (total 20 2048×1536 pixel shots).
Memory: SD, SDHC, SDXC cards plus 102MB internal memory.
Image Sizes (pixels): 4320×3240 to 640×480. Movies: 1280x720p, 960×540, 640×480 at 30 fps.
Viewfinders: 7.5cm LCD (921,000 pixels).
File Formats: JPEG, MPEG4.
ISO Sensitivity: Auto, 80 to 6400. Interface: USB 2.0, HDMI mini, AV, DC.
Power: 4AA alkaline/lithium/NiMH, DC input.
Dimensions: 109.9×76.5×78.4 WHDmm.
Weight: Approx. 431 g (inc batteries and card).
Price: Get a price on the Nikon COOLPIX L120 at Amazon.
September 21, 2013 03:27 am
Hi, I can't figure how to change the ISO settings on the L120.. How do you?
August 10, 2013 07:47 pm
Hey guys- have had the l12o for several years now and have loved it!. Am looking at buying a dslr- it is a fair outlay, I am wondering is there a significant difference in the quality of photos? I take most of my pictures when hiking,
June 30, 2013 04:42 am
My pictures with L120 are blurry and after print are dark than showing with laptop
June 14, 2013 10:48 am
I"m a new owner of a nikon coolpix L120, and i can"t get the different colors,
April 23, 2013 12:30 am
Paid over 100 bucks for a camera (Nikon L120) that I was going to use on a cruise I didn't end up going on over 6 months ago and I have BARELY used the camera, probably took a total of 10 pictures since having it for over a year and now everytime I try to take a picture it freezes/shuts off. Full battery, reset the camera several times. For as very little it has been touched I should not have to send it to a Nikon specialty place and waste money getting something fixed that I have barely used. I've already (as it seems) wasted money buying it.
August 6, 2012 11:58 pm
Its ur wish, u can go with any brand, but there is no any comparison between Nikon and Olympus. Nikon is much better then Olympus.
August 6, 2012 11:47 pm
Thanks a lot, Bhaskar. Now I'd go with Coolpix L120.
Also, Is Olympus TG-610 a good deal?
July 31, 2012 07:53 pm
L120 is better according to the price in this range. So you can go with L120 as its clarity is much better, its also having the 21X zoom its also gives the feature to click image from the far distance.
July 31, 2012 07:10 pm
I need some serious help. If someone has used Nikon L120 and nikon L810, which one is better? I'm a 14 year-old from Pakistan, and these cameras look great deal in terms of money. If someone can even give me some other suggestion in the similar price range, most welcome...
May 16, 2012 06:13 am
im looking at the new nikon L 120 my mother in law has one and loves its i was just wondering is the picture grainy if you take a zoomed in picture and does it do good with action picture because i have kids the play sports
May 2, 2012 08:22 am
I have this camera and it has been a God send when my primary DSLR was in for repair. Even zoomed all the way in it can take a clear photo with a very steady hand or tripod. Once you learn the setting, you can almost do anything with it. The only thing keeping this from being better is this camera has no viewfinder or manual mode where you can change ISO or F-stop. I would recommend this for a second or spare camera, or camera for an assistant taking candid shots. I paid $200 and some change for it brand new from Best Buy with a 1 year warranty. It is very sturdy and easy to carry around because it is so light.[eimg url='http://i69.photobucket.com/albums/i73/supervoice05/DSCN1490logo.jpg' title='DSCN1490logo.jpg']
April 16, 2012 05:22 am
thou it's zoom is gd bt m plning to buy a new camera with interchangeble lenses. L120s range is abt 20-25 mt max for a clear photo,after that images losses their sharpness n clearity. So m going for sony may b nex 7k. Any suggestion for me for a gd camera with extra lenses??
April 14, 2012 02:53 pm
Hello ppl .. i love this cam and specially its shape . hwever there is 1 thing due to which i planning to return it .. PICS R GETTING BLURRED ... i hv seen a lot of reviews where ppl r talking abt slow shutter speed .. i m nt a professional .. Whn i tried clicking a pic of a running fan, it was competely blurred. Whn i tried the same pic with flash, i worked very well .. now obviously in sufficient light Flash is not gonna work .. gv m all possible tips for getting clear pics ..
Also hv tried different ISO modes and found that they play very important role .. How we shld use them according to different dituations.
April 1, 2012 12:48 am
Purchased a L120 to replace my Sony Cybershot anticipating better clarity when enlarging to 13 x 19. Found loss of detail and fuzy images with the L120. The L120 is now being used to record progress of construction projects and the Sony for work requiring sharper details.
I have tried various combinations of the L120 menu and cannot get the camera to produce sharp images.
March 29, 2012 02:41 pm
i am thinking of buying one of theses for 189 second hand. is this an alright price or not? also would this camera be alright for fliming?
March 20, 2012 04:34 am
n e way it's a gd camera at low price.i always enjoy taking pics wid it thou there r sm prblms.after all it's nt a fully dslr.
March 20, 2012 03:11 am
Your comment about the flash alleviating your blurring issue makes me think that perhaps lighting is an issue. If your son't Bday party was indoors, it would be good to use the party/indoors mode. Go to the Scene button; when the menu comes up on the screen, and look for a little cone with confetti coming out of it. When you select this icon, it will say party/indoors at the bottom of the screen.
If your party was outdoors at night there is a mode for night/portrait and other night modes. Use these modes to help regulate the light settings easily.
I hope this is helpful.
March 19, 2012 04:43 pm
Though this comment was earlier on top, but I didnt get any reply, hence again re post. Hello Team, On my Son’s BDay. Everything seems to have got messed up with photos. Infact all snaps have become Blurred, Shaky, Stretched from corners and in some places Ghostly Images has overlapped. In some places, I can see that the camera has focussed only on middle and rest of the area is blurred or streched towards outside of the photo. And in other places. middle subject is blurred and rest all is fine. Please suggest what went wrong or is there a technical problem with my camera. All good memories are shaken ! Pls help.
I have checked all image stablization settings are correct.
What I have noticed is this problem happens in night time and particularly when I use "Auto Easy Mode" but doesnt happens in "Auto Mode" Moreover, sometimes, if my flash is on, then this doesnt happens.
March 19, 2012 05:12 am
There is a self-timer on your camera that automatically shuts the camera off if the user doesn't take some action within a certain amount of time. So, if you are trying to line up a shot, and it takes awhile before you feel comfortable with what you have set up, the timer often shuts down before you can click the shutter. I think mine arrived with the self-timer already on. There is a way to shut it off, but so far I haven't had the patience to look it up and go through the process. I believe I have seen it in the manual before. You probably have a hard copy of the manual, as well as a c.d. with the user manual on it.
It is a bit tricky at first, but you get used to it shortly. Happy snaps.
March 17, 2012 01:35 am
i barely used my L120 and when i do try to use it when trying to capture my picture it turns off ?!
March 16, 2012 04:36 pm
what you actually want to say? How you feel that your camera is hanging and when you feel so?
Could you please explain it, so one can help you.. I never face that kind of any problem with my camera. :)
March 16, 2012 04:13 pm
why sometimes my camera hang ? :(
March 15, 2012 05:48 pm
This camera have to just recharge the battery which is used in it? This camera is having 4 Pencil cell which need to be charge after approximately 200 clicks.
March 15, 2012 02:23 am
hi , does this camera need to be charge or just charge the battery?
March 5, 2012 05:14 pm
Vry useful with its zooming capbilities....resolution nd macro mode......an affordable power packd bridge camera frm d house of nikon....grt for beginers in d field of photography....
February 16, 2012 04:59 am
I'm waiting for my l120 to arrive in the mail. Is there any way of adding a fisheye lense to it?
February 12, 2012 09:25 pm
Hi guys I think there is a telephoto lens available for nikon L120 coolpix........http://www.digitaltoyshop.com/Telephoto_Lens_Nikon_Coolpix_L120_t2446_4819_1
February 11, 2012 10:05 pm
Jayantha, But I found some lens on the amazon.com. They offered some additional lens for L120 also.
If any one have any Idea about the same, please share the experience.
February 11, 2012 08:53 pm
bhaskar i asked at d store n they said there is no option for extra lncs.if u find any solution plz infrm.
February 11, 2012 06:06 pm
Can we use additional or supplementary lens with the Nikon L120 camera, please suggest me that how can we use additional lens for a long distance photography with this Nikon L120 camera to increase their Zoom capacity.
Thanks in advance.
February 11, 2012 08:00 am
i bought this lst mnth n I lv it.its zooming n pic quality is quite gd bt sm tyms pics were blured,don kno y may b my fault! ovr all a nice camera at low price.
January 28, 2012 10:58 am
I'm looking to buy a new camera to take travelling, mostly to take landscape shots. I've been going back and forth between the Nikon L120 and s9100. any suggestions?
January 24, 2012 05:21 am
Hi, I am very new in photography and this is my first camera. I just purchased Nikon L120. Just want to know, can I use additional lens with this one so can focus manually also. Is this a DSLR or no. Can anyone pls suggest me that for a better picture, how much zoom out should be used so the quality of pics will not be shaked.
Thanks in advance. :)
January 22, 2012 03:34 pm
Zuha... first of all Nikon L120 is not a DSLR.Its a point and shoot ( more of a bridge cam )
Shutter speed cannot be control but i guess u can try using high ISO or Sports continous mode when capturing moving subjects.
January 22, 2012 02:31 pm
I have been having issues with my new Nikon L120 and after reading of some of the issues some of you had (like the blurry pictures especially inside taking pics of my 7 month old and 3 year old). I seem to have put on a setting which caused this. But after I changed my settings back to default it is fixed. I have to say I danced with joy because it was a gift from my hubby and I really needed to be happy with this camera. Now I have to say it takes awesome pics!! I love my Nikon L120!! :)
January 7, 2012 06:43 pm
I m going to buy my first camera. I want to know is nikon l120 is good for photography? Also tell me its competitor in same price range....
December 27, 2011 10:45 pm
This is the first DSLR camera I've bought. Like, ever. i used a tiny useless digital camera for my photography before. I'm really inexperienced with photography as it is, and this gets a bit more confusing.
The problem I have with this is that it doesn't have Manual Focus and it doesn't have the option to control Shutter Speed. Otherwise it's a great camera.
But, how do I overcome these problems?
December 22, 2011 09:27 pm
Thanks Nitin for input.
I bought Sanyo eneloop batteries with charger...
December 22, 2011 04:21 am
Hi Vipul, any batteries will do, I haven't faced any problem and in fact reliance stores across India, dont use pure EN-MH2-B4, infact they use Alkaline. U might have noticed this in any shop from where u bought the camera. They use alkaline for demo purposes and sell the same to us !
December 20, 2011 07:38 pm
which batteries we should use with L120 ?
Nikon recommends their EN-MH2-B4 batteries only.
In market other make Ni-MH batteries are also available.
December 6, 2011 07:36 am
Michele, I am sorry that your photos did not turn out as you would have wished. It is probably good to go back to default settings so that you have limited factors to contend with as you come familiar with your camera settings. Perhaps your band shots were blurry because you needed to be in sports continuous mode.. That's the little running guy icon above auto mode. select the icon and then select continuous. I got a good book from amazon.com that has good tips for using point and shoots, dslr and bridge cameras. It didn't cost very much. The title is Better Photo Basics by Jim Miotke. It's a great book for showing the effects of iso and other factors. Also ususe it with your manual.
Hope this helps. I am a rank amateur. As such, I sympathize and hope others will help me too.
Oh yes, on sports continuous mode I got great pictures of a flicker family last summer, Feeding their young and flying and everything.
December 6, 2011 05:48 am
Thanks, Sara! I'm open to any advice or suggestions. I checked my ISO & its still set on auto mode. I have changed it to all different kinds of settings and now all of my photos are coming back blurry. I may just restore the default settings. I was suppose to take pics of a southern rock band & I was so embarrassed that none of them turned out right. I love this camera & I know how beautifully it can capture images. So like I said, I'm just going to restore the settings & pay better attention as to what I do from now on! : )
December 1, 2011 06:33 am
Sorry, I forgot to mention its Nikon L120,
Hello Team, On my Son's BDay. Everything seems to have got messed up with photos. Infact all snaps have become Shaky, Stretched from corners and in some places Ghostly Images has overlapped. In some places, I can see that the camera has focussed only on middle and rest of the area is blurred or streched towards outside of the photo. And in other places. middle subject is blurred and rest all is fine. Please suggest what went wrong or is there a technical problem with my camera. All good memories are shaken ! Thx Nitin
November 28, 2011 10:04 pm
I find that moving objects blur when I take pictures with the Nikon L120, I have tried different modes too, can anyone advise how I can capture moving objects without getting a blurry end result?? Moving objects such as my dogs or birds flying etc
November 22, 2011 01:02 pm
I'm looking Into gettin a better camera. I currently have a Nikon coolpix s60, and was looking into either the L20 or the D3000. can someone explain the benefits of the d3000 vs this camera? is this camera better than the d3000?
November 20, 2011 03:58 am
Michele, I am far from being an expert, but your problem suggests to me that you may have inadvertentley reset your ISO setting. Isn't it so , that at lower lights, your ISO setting can cause the shutter speed to slow, so that one has blurry pictures? Just a guess. I just like to offer what help I can as this site helped me when I first got my camera.
November 19, 2011 07:24 pm
I have owned my Nikon L120 for a few months now. I have to admit I absolutely love it!!! The only bad thing about it is that I guess I have messed up a setting or something, but now every picture I take inside, early/late in the evening come out very blurry. It wasn't always like that. Does anyone know what I may have done or how I can fix this? I am now being paid to take portraits, but I am limited on them now. I can only take them outside. I have a facebook page listed below that shows photos I have taken with my Nikon L120.
November 13, 2011 09:38 am
I am an ametur and myself am thinking of purchasing the Nikon L120 currently I have a Casio Exilim EX-Z8 and always get annoyed with it for not focusing correctly.I'm wanting to get better quality photos like the D3000, will this be a huge improvement from what i currently own?
November 3, 2011 05:24 am
can any one please suggest, with a budget of 10000 to 15000 /rs , which camera & brand is suitable,
Purpose: Regular(general) purpose.
thank you for u r cooperation
October 27, 2011 06:24 am
I go to sports mode to get the continuous shots. When I want to get pictures of birds I select the icon of the little guy that is running, then on that menu select continuous. It works great.
October 27, 2011 04:04 am
How can I get my camera into continuous shooting mode?
October 27, 2011 04:02 am
How do I set my camera to continuous shooting?
October 23, 2011 05:09 am
I bought a Nikon L120, and am extremely happy with it. I rarely have to go higher than 800 with the ISO, so it's not a problem. My grandfather, who really got me started in photography, has a DSLR and the quality of my photos can compete very well with his.
The zoom is great. I recently went with my grandfather to a mountain range that had a buffalo reserve nearby, and from 50 feet away the buffalo looked as if they were standing right next me.
October 22, 2011 03:51 am
just now i bought nikon l120... two times i didnt got clear view in lcd screen....wat problem...
camera fault or my fault...???
October 21, 2011 02:43 am
Dear all user,
What is the draw back in this camera? Battery? Video? Please help me. I am just a beginner.
October 20, 2011 04:39 pm
Thanks for sharing this. I think Nikon Coolpix L120 is one of the best point and shoot camera at this point of time. It's not too much expensive. I am using it and it is really very handy. It would have been better had the zooming capacity a bit more than what it has. Battery back up is good. I can easily take 300 photos. The camera comes with three colours, I have the black one.
September 11, 2011 03:28 am
thanks ben,sara :) will check your tips and let u know :)
September 10, 2011 03:09 pm
deepak, I notice that when I zoom all the way in, every slight movement causes a shaking. I don't know if that is why you are having the vibration problem. Of course, a tripod, or some other way of steadying your hand might help. I try holding my breath, and clicking the button slowly. For bird, or animal shots, I put it on sports mode, and that helps a lot with blurring.
September 10, 2011 03:05 pm
catalin, i admit you took good photographs.. just some are out of focus.. i guess the issue here is object in focus.. there is an object indicator in the screen. i always aim the focus indicator on the onject till i hear a click,, then i will get good clear photos... but you did good in your photo shoots!
September 10, 2011 02:57 pm
hi deepak, i guess you have to focus until you hear a click sound (meaning it is in focus) otherwise you will get blur objects... if you want to take close up like on flowers, fruits, pens, cups... you have to switch to macro mode... i didnt have this problem with the L120.. infact it is one of the best camera.. i have tried olympus point and shoot camera but the L120 stands out among the rest... but of course we do not want to campare with the high end cameras in the DSLR category okay... im just astisfied with my L120...
September 10, 2011 05:35 am
I bought a nikon L120 recently. Indeed im facing a major problem that majority of the pictures are getting shaked. Eventhough i made the vibration mode on, it couldn't resolve the problem. Can anyone advise how can i rectify it?
September 9, 2011 07:25 pm
you can find some of the pictures i took here:
September 9, 2011 07:23 pm
I have purchased the L120 last week. I allready made about 600 pics, more than 75% were good. I am not a nikon fan, yet, the camera meets my needs. Sorry for my bad english.
September 7, 2011 06:27 pm
I have been using nikon point and shoot digital camera to take photos for my articles in magazines and journals. the L120 provides me good photos and extra in zoom power and resolution. i admit i am a hardcore nikon fan. just a satisfied person with a simple and yet powerful camera...
June 17, 2011 08:01 am
is this Camera a DSLR or not ?
and what i will miss in it if i buy it
May 16, 2011 12:45 pm
Thank you so much for your advice. It helped me to have a little more confidence, and some options. I seem to be doing much better. Perhaps I am getting the knack. I went out the other day and took wildflower pictures. They turned out okay. That puts my mind to rest on the worry that there might be somethig wrong with the camera. I did read the manual on cd which I have, but I really have a hard time making sense of what they are actuallty saying sometimes. Anyway, I sincerely thank you for your help.
May 13, 2011 12:41 pm
To Sara again.
About "move the camera towards or backwards " you have to lock the focus first by pressing the shutter half way.
Here's the user manual, if you don't have it already: http://support.nikonusa.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/17176/~/user%27s-manual---nikon-coolpix-l120---guide-to-digital-photography
Check pages 24 and 25.
May 13, 2011 12:15 pm
Sara, autofocus aims at anything on the center of the screen.
If even that doesn't work then aim the camera at your hand or something else first, then lock the focus by pressing the shutter half way, then aim back at your target and take the photo. But beware that other automatic settings like exposure, white balance and more may be affected by the color and illumination of your hand or whatever you aimed at.
Other thing you can try is to move the camera towards or backwards your target to adjust the focus "manually".
May 12, 2011 03:44 am
I just bought a Nikkon L120. I have never used a digital camera before. I practiced taking pictures on the macro function yesterday. I tried using the side zoom function to focus in on a pillbox, flower and miniature painting, and when I pressed the zoom to get close in to the image, the camera would zoom in very quickly and for a nano second the image would be sharp, but the zoom would go right on past the focused image and stop at a blurry image. Is there some way to control where the zoom stops? How can I control the zoom so that it magnifies to the degree I want, and lets me get in very close to the image?
I am willing to take the time to learn, but I just want to make sure there is nothing wrong with my new camera while I am waiting to master its use.
If anyone could give me some insights to start with, that would be great. Thanks.
April 26, 2011 04:46 pm
Anyone getting rid of an old camera tell me, i'll buy it, I really want a Nikon d50, d50 or something decent but I can't afford a new camera :(
April 8, 2011 01:01 am
I have been a Nikon fan for the last 28 years. I still own over 10 Nikon manual film cameras. Last year i bought the L110 and I struggled with the camera with low light exposures. After 2 months I gave it away to a friend. i bought Fuji S1800 which I enjoyed very much. Since then i have upgraded to the Fuji HS-10. I think Nikon needs to work on the bridge cameras to compete with other manufacturers.
I am sure the L120 is a better camera than the L110, but once bitten twice shy. Now i am looking forward to the HS-20.
April 7, 2011 02:16 am
Do you think this camera will work for pictures of children? I am in the market for a camera that will meet my artistic leanings for zoom and macro but also take pics of the family during our outings. I have a very quick toddler so the camera needs to be pretty quick. Will this fit the bill?
April 6, 2011 04:17 am
Well, I used it last night at full zoom at the NCAA finals and 90% of the action shots were great. I loved the results.
April 5, 2011 08:28 pm
I considered purchasing an L120 to replace my old D50, but in the end I went with another DSLR. I still might pick up a 120 however to keep handy as a more compact backup.
April 5, 2011 12:03 pm
At Full Zoom I would imagine it would have to be mounted on a very sturdy tripod with a heavy sandbag on top of the camera to get a really sharp image.. A Camera this light should just about be impossible to hold steady to get clear sharp images at max zoom. So why have it.
April 5, 2011 10:39 am
As a long-time Nikon user I considered purchasing an L120 to replace my old D50, but in the end I went with another DSLR. I still might pick up a 120 however to keep handy as a more compact backup. For the money, this really is a lot of camera IMO.
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