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Nikon Coolpix S6900 Review

Nikon Coolpix S6900 is a compact digital camera with a 12x optical zoom lens, front shutter button, tilting screen and a built in stand to help you take perfect self portraits or group shots.

| Nikon Coolpix S6900 in Compact Cameras
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Nikon Coolpix S6900 Review: Nikon Coolpix S6900 Black (2)

The Nikon Coolpix S6900 is a compact digital camera with a 12x optical zoom lens, a front shutter button, a tilting screen and a built-in stand to help you take perfect self-portraits or group shots. Built-in Wi-Fi lets you quickly share your images. The Nikon Coolpix S6900 is available in black or white for £189.

Nikon Coolpix S6900 Features

Nikon Coolpix S6900 Review: Nikon Coolpix S6900 Black (8)

The Nikon Coolpix S6900 is designed to let you take your best-ever selfies and share them instantly with built-in Wi-Fi and NFC technology. Letting you post photos on social media as soon as you take them. A built-in camera stand makes taking self and group portraits easy, and a 12x optical zoom lens features built-in vibration reduction (VR) to keep shots steady.

Gesture Control lets you shoot 16 megapixel photos and Full HD movies at a wave of your hand. The vari-angle LCD touch-screen helps take shots at various angles, and built in Glamour mode effects can be used to retouch portraits in camera.

Nikon Coolpix S6900 Review: Nikon Coolpix S6900 Black (4)

Key Features

  • 16 megapixel BSI CMOS sensor
  • 12x optical zoom lens, equivalent to 25-300mm
  • Vibration Reduction Image Stabilisation
  • 3inch Vari-angle LCD touch-panel screen
  • Built-in camera stand, front shutter button
  • FullHD Video with stereo sound
  • ISO125-ISO6400
  • 2cm macro mode
  • 8fps continuous shooting
  • Built-in Wi-Fi and NFC
  • Gesture Control makes it even easier to shoot photos and Full HD movies at the wave of a hand
  • Available in black or white

Nikon Coolpix S6900 Handling

Nikon Coolpix S6900 Review: Nikon Coolpix S6900 Black (5)

The camera is compact with a plastic body, and there is very little grip on the front or rear of the camera, so using the provided wrist strap is recommended. The camera is easy to use despite the small size and limited number of buttons. The buttons on the touch screen automatically rotate to display the correct way round when you twist and turn the camera, for example when standing the camera upright. The menus are clearly laid out and use large graphical icons to make it easy to select options. You can use the touch screen to take photos, as well as use hand gestures to tell the camera to take a photo or start a video. 

Because of most of the control being via the touchscreen there are very few buttons on the camera, with four on top, these include: Wi-Fi, On/Off, shutter release and zoom control as well as the video record button. There is also a shutter release button on the front of the camera, although this is not a two-stage shutter like the main shutter release button, one press will focus and take the photo straight away. 

The screen looks quite good, although doesn't have the best viewing angles, so being able to tilt the screen helps here, particularly if you want to shoot at different angles. As it is a touch-screen you will most likely want to keep the screen clean so a lens cloth is recommended. 

Nikon Coolpix S6900 Review: Nikon Coolpix S6900 Black (7)

Wi-Fi features - The Nikon "Wireless Mobile Utility" app is available for iOS and Android devices.

Nikon Coolpix S6900 Review: Nikon Coolpix S6900 Remote Nikon Coolpix S6900 Review: Nikon Coolpix S6900 Remote Control Nikon Coolpix S6900 Review: Nikon Coolpix S6900 Playback
Wireless Mobile Utility  Remote Control Playback View

You can use the touch-screen on the camera to take photos, and set the focus point, but strangely you can't use the smartphones touchscreen when using remote control to set the focus point. There are very few options when using the remote control feature in the app.

Nikon Coolpix S6900 Review: Nikon Coolpix S6900 Black (6)

Battery life - Battery life is rated at 190 shots according to Nikon / CIPA test results, which is quite low, and a spare is recommended if you plan on taking more before charging. 

Speed - 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.

Shutter Response 0.05secs
Wide - Focus / Shutter Response 0.2secs
Full zoom - Focus / Shutter Response 0.5secs
Switch on Time to Taking a Photo 1.1secs
Shot to Shot without Flash 0.5secs
Shot to Shot with Flash 1.6secs
Continuous Shooting - JPEG
(shots before slow down)
10fps (7 shots)
Continuous Shooting - Flash N/A

Focus is quick at the wide end of the lens with fast shutter response. Continuous shooting is very fast at 10fps, although for only 7 shots.

Nikon Coolpix S6900 Performance

The performance section is where we look at the image quality performance of the camera. 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 S6900 Sample Photos

Sample Photos - The camera takes photos with good colour and exposure is reliable. On auto settings, the camera delivers images with decent dynamic range, and this can be extended using the backlighting or HDR setting, although this can result in results looking artificial. Photos taken with flash occasionally show red-eye, and it's quite easy to accidentally cover up the flash with your hand. 

Nikon Coolpix S6900 Lens test images

Lens Performance - Images have good colour, although detail could be a little sharper, with some softness towards the corner of the frame when shooting wide. Distortion is well controlled, although some vignetting was noticeable. The camera copes well with bright light sources, unless they are very bright and directly in the shot, as shown above. Some purple fringing was visible, although for the most post this wasn't too much of a problem, and for sharing on social media websites, then the image quality should suffice. Macro performance is good, with the camera focusing on subjects just 2cm away from the front of the lens, as long as macro focus is selected. It's also possible to zoom slightly to get a closer shot. 

Nikon Coolpix S6900 ISO test images

ISO Noise Performance - For the lowest noise and best detail possible we would recommend using ISO125 to ISO400, as images have low levels of noise and good levels of detail. For lower light situations ISO800 still provides good results, although noise increases and detail is reduced. At ISO1600-ISO3200 noise levels become strong and we would recommend avoiding this setting if possible, although results may still be useful if resized and used on the web. ISO6400 is best avoided as noise is extremely high, detail is very low, and there is colour loss.

Nikon Coolpix S6900 White-balance test images

White Balance Performance - Auto White Balance (AWB) performs well under tungsten lighting, with the tungsten preset giving an accurate result. AWB performs very well under fluorescent lights, with the fluorescent preset giving a magenta colour cast.

Panorama mode - The camera features an automatic panoramic mode, where you simply press the shutter release button and pan the camera from one side to the other. Results are quite good, and well stitched together, although the resolution could be better.

Nikon Coolpix S6900 Digital filters

Digital Filters - There are a wide range of effects available, as well as mirror, quick retouch, d-lighting, red-eye reduction, glamour retouch, paint, stretch, perspective, selective softening, as well as HDR and backlighting shooting options. 

Video - Video options include FullHD video recording at 30fps, as well as 720p, and high-speed video recording at 720p at 60fps, and 640x480 at 12fps. Videos are recorded with stereo sound and optical zoom is available. 

Value For Money

The Nikon Coolpix S6900 is available for £189 which makes it good value for money, particularly up against the following cameras, although few, if any, offer as much in the way of features and optical zoom:

Olympus Stylus Tough TG-850 - selfie screen, 5x optical zoom, £229
Nikon Coolpix P7800 - vari-angle screen, 7.1x optical zoom, £399
Nikon Coolpix S6600 - vari-angle screen, 12x optical zoom, £119 (while still available)
Casio Exilim ZR50 - selfie screen, front shutter button, 10x optical zoom, if available in your area

You'll also need to buy a memory card and a case or bag to keep your camera safe and protected - have a look at our complete guide to camera bags.

Nikon Coolpix S6900 Verdict

The Nikon Coolpix S6900 is quite rare in that it features a front shutter release button, a vari-angle tilting 3inch touch-screen and a built-in stand. Photos have bright colours which will look good when shared on social media websites like Facebook, and with built-in Wi-Fi it is easy to send images straight to your smartphone. There are lots of effects, scene modes, and options to take creative photos, and the 12x optical zoom lens means you have a good level of zoom for a pocketable camera. For those that want high image quality, then the S6900 may disappoint. For those that want an easy to use camera that is ideal for self-portraits, selfies, and group shots, then the S6900 fits the bill and makes sharing photos to social network sites easy where images will look good. 

Nikon Coolpix S6900 Pros

Wide-angle 12x optical zoom lens
Built-in Wi-Fi and NFC connectivity
Built in effects
Front shutter button
3inch tilting touch-screen 
Built in stand
10fps continuous shooting

Nikon Coolpix S6900 Cons

190 shot battery life
Soft corners in some images
Little grip


Nikon Coolpix S6900 Review:

The Nikon Coolpix S6900 offers a unique combination of features that make it one of the best "selfie" cameras currently available.


Nikon Coolpix S6900 Specifications

Max Aperturef/3.3 - f/6.3
35mm equivalent25mm - 300mm
Optical Zoom12x
Image Sensor
Pixels16Mp (Megapixels)
Pixels (W)4608
Pixels (H)3456
Sensor TypeBack-lit CMOS (B.S.I.)
Sensor Size1/2.3
Sensor Size (width)No Data
Sensor Size (height)No Data
Aspect Ratio
  • 4:3
  • 16:9
  • 1:1
LCD Monitor
LCD Monitor3in
Screen resolution460k dot
Touch ScreenYes
Min Focus2cm
Focusing modes
  • Autofocus
  • Face Detection
  • AF Tracking
  • Centre
  • Touch AF
Exposure Control
Shutter speeds shortest1/4000sec
Shutter speeds longest4sec
Bulb modeNo
Exp modes
  • Program
  • Scene modes
  • Centre-weighted - Average
  • Multi Pattern
  • Centre Spot
ISO sensitivity125 - 6400
White balance
  • Auto
  • Manual
  • Outdoors/Daylight
  • Cloudy
  • Incandescent
  • Fluorescent
  • Flash
Exposure Comp+/-2
Shooting Options
Continuous shooting8fps
Movie modeYes
Video Resolution
  • 1920x1080 FullHD
Video FPS60i, 30p
Stereo SoundYes
Optical Zoom with VideoYes
Other Features
Image StabilisationYes
Card Type
  • SD
  • SDHC
  • SDXC
File Type
  • JPG
Power Source
Battery TypeLithium Ion EN-EL19
Battery Life (CIPA rating)190shots
Box Contents
Box ContentsCamera Strap, Rechargeable Li-ion Battery EN-EL19, Charging AC Adapter EH-71P (A plug adapter is included if the camera was purchased in a country or region that requires a plug adapter. The shape of the plug adapter varies with the country or region of p

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Photographs taken using the Nikon Coolpix S6900

why is the sky blue?lithiumWhiteoutsunday morningthe illusion of light

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sasan Avatar
sasan 10 36 England
5 Dec 2014 9:35PM
Key Features :
8fps continuous shooting
Nikon Coolpix S6900 Pros :
10fps continuous shooting

Which one is true?
eveenhoven Avatar
5 Dec 2014 11:33PM
I always look at the Crumpler bag to see how a camera does it's job. This one is no good.
sasan Avatar
sasan 10 36 England
6 Dec 2014 7:42AM

Quote:I always look at the Crumpler bag to see how a camera does it's job. This one is no good.

I'm agree with U a 100 percent... Just no idea for this sensor size and adding MP each year and growing noise!
"Noise in 200 iso" a movie by nikon.Tonight's movie in cinemasGrin

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