The Nikon Coolpix S3600 was announced in January 2014 and is a compact camera with 8x optical zoom. It also has a 20.1 megapixel sensor, retouch menu and a range of digital filters which can be used on your pictures before and after shooting. It is available in blue, pink, red, black, silver and pink lineart for around £110.
Nikon Coolpix S3600 Features
The Nikon Coolpix S3600 has a 20.1 megapixel CCD sensor and a 8x optical zoom lens, which is a 35mm equivalent of 25-200mm. To help take sharper shots there is optical image stabilisation. When shooting moving objects you can use Target Finding AF which identifies and focuses on your subject.
The Scene Auto Selector automatically optimises the camera settings for the detected scene, or you can choose your own from 18 scene modes. There is the Smart Portrait System which includes Smile Timer, Blink Proof alerting and Red-Eye Fix. After shooting your portraits they can be enhanced using Advanced Glamour Retouch, which includes 12 retouch effects such as add make-up and hide eye-bags. You can also edit your images via the Retouch menu with 32 quick effects, which includes Selective Colour.
Videos are recorded in 720p HD.
20.1 megapixel CCD sensor
8x optical zoom lens (35mm equiv: 25-200mm)
Optical image stabilisation
2.7 inch 230k LCD screen
720p HD video recording
ISO 80-1600 (ISO 3200 available when using Auto mode)
2cm minimum focusing distance
Smart Portrait System
Advanced Glamour Retouch
Available in blue, pink, red, black, silver and pink lineart
Nikon Coolpix S3600 Handling
The Nikon Coolpix S3600 has a compact, pocketable body with a metal front. To aid grip there is a number of dots on the rear where your right hand thumb sits. On top of the camera is the on / off button, alongside the zoom rocker and shutter release. On the rear are movie record, mode, playback, menu and delete buttons as well as a d-pad for cycling through the menus. The d-pad also gives quick access to the flash, exposure compensation, macro and self-timer.
Also on the rear is the 2.7 inch screen which has a low 230k dot resolution, but does have an anti-reflective coating, making it easy to see even in bright sunlight. There is quite a lot of space around the screen, so it's possible Nikon could have used a 3 inch one instead. The menu system is simple and easy to navigate.
Battery life is rated at 220 shots according to Nikon / CIPA standards, which is decent for a budget compact camera. We took a number of shots to test the camera's responsiveness, from switch on to first photo, shot to shot, focusing speed etc. We take a number of shots and then use the average to ensure accurate and consistent tests, making it easy to compare with other cameras.
Wide - Focus / Shutter Response
Full zoom - Focus / Shutter Response
Switch on Time to Taking a Photo
Shot to Shot without Flash
Shot to Shot with Flash
Continuous Shooting H
0.7 fps slows after 3 shots
When using the flash, it does take a little time to charge, so will slow you down between shots. Continuous shooting records in full 20.1 megapixel resolution, but does slow down after just three shots.
Nikon Coolpix S3600 Performance
Additional sample photos and product shots are available in the Equipment Database, where you can add your own review, photos and product ratings.
Nikon Coolpix S3600 Sample Photos
Sample Photos - Images have good colour reproduction and are well exposed. The portrait mode takes images with very soft skin and decent tones, with only the slightest hint of red-eye when using the flash. Images in low light aren't overly impressive, our example images has a red tone to it.
Nikon Coolpix S3600 Lens test images
Lens Performance - Images have a reasonable amount of detail at both ends of the lens, although they are clearly softer in the corners. There is a hint of purple fringing in contrasting areas, although it's quite hard to spot unless you view the images full size. The lens has a minimum focusing distance of just 2cm which allows you to take a good macro shot.
Nikon Coolpix S3600 ISO test images
ISO Noise Performance - Images are low in noise at ISO 80, 100 and 200. Noise isn't an issue at ISO 400, but images do become a little soft at ISO 800. Images are very soft at ISO 1600 and at ISO 3200 image size is limited to 4 megapixels.
Nikon Coolpix S3600 White-balance test images
White Balance Performance - Under the incandescent lights the Auto White Balance (AWB) performs well, the incandescent preset performs slightly better though. Under the fluorescent lights the AWB performs excellently, with the fluorescent preset taking an image with a clear colour cast.
Nikon Coolpix S3600 Digital filters
Digital Filters - The S3600 comes with a range of special effects for creative shots - we have included examples of each of above.
Video - Below is a video recorded in 720p HD. Quality is good and when using the optical zoom there is no sound of the lens movement picked up by the microphone.
The Nikon Coolpix S3600 is a budget camera with a decent amount of optical zoom and is available in a number of appealing colours. Images quality is fine for sharing on the web, with good colour reproduction. The Glamour Retouch mode lets you take decent portrait shots, so this is an ideal camera for taking pictures when you're out with friends.
Nikon Coolpix S3600 Pros
Available in a number of colours
Good range of special effects
2cm minimum focusing distance
Decent image quality
Nikon Coolpix S3600 Cons
Continuous shooting slows after 3 shots
Clear barrel distortion
Short battery life