Nikon Coolpix W150 Waterproof Camera Review

We take a look at the latest family-friendly camera from Nikon, offering 13.2 megapixels and FullHD movies. It's also waterproof to 10m.


|  Nikon Coolpix W150 in Compact Cameras
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Quick Verdict

The Nikon Coolpix W150 is a great option for those that want a tough point and shoot which can be used by all the family on holiday. The camera looks great especially in the 'Resort' design that we had in for test. The capability to shoot underwater will be a big draw for the kids, as will the fun filters and frames you can easily add to photos. Overall image quality is acceptable however if you want any kind of manual control you'll be disappointed. 

+ Pros

  • Very easy to use
  • Lots of fun filters
  • Waterproof to 10m
  • Good macro mode 

- Cons

  • Lacks manual controls
  • High noise in low light
  • Slow between shots
 

 

The Nikon Coolpix W150 is a compact, waterproof and shockproof camera designed for families. Nikon say it's simple enough for the kids to use and is great for capturing holiday snaps. It's available in a variety of fun colours and patterns, including flowery with pink accents, blue, white, orange and the one we have to test - Nikon call it 'Resort', but we'd say it's a very tropical vibe with yellow-gold accents. It's available to pre-order now for £149 from Amazon (Price may vary depending on the colour you want). Here, we find out how it performs.


Nikon Coolpix W150 Features

Nikon Coolpix W150 Underwater Rs

The Nikon Coolpix W150 is a simply designed camera featuring a 13.2 megapixel CMOS sensor, 3x optical zoom and 6x dynamic fine (digital) zoom. There's a 4.1-12.3mm focal length, giving a 30-90mm equivalent. 

There's electronic VR for still images and movies, and face detection AF, which Nikon says can help you pinpoint faces easily when using the camera underwater. 

Looking at the spec table, you'll find that this camera has a lot of similarities with the Coolpix W100, which we reviewed back in 2016. The sensor, screen and lens are the same - the main difference is that there is now an Underwater Face Framing mode, in which the camera snaps up to 4 photos each time it sees a face. Just hold the camera under the water and it'll do the work for you. 

The Coolpix W150 features a new Underwater Face Framing mode - simply hold the camera under water and it'll capture up to 4 snaps of faces under the water for you.

There's a flash on the front of the camera, and on the top you'll find the on/off button which lights up when the camera's on. To the left and right are large round shutter buttons - the left one to start a FullHD video, and the right one to capture a still photo. A half-press of the stills button will focus the shot. On either side of the buttons are loops for you to attach a neck strap, or float if you plan to use the camera in the water.  

 

To the rear, you'll find the 2.7-inch 230k dot LCD screen with an anti-reflection coating and a 5-level brightness adjustment. To the left of this are 4 buttons - The top one takes you back to camera mode, the second one down access to the flash and self-timer modes, the third one scene modes and the fourth one is your settings. When in a sub menu you can use the 4 buttons to make your selections, a bit like an ATM. 

To the right of the screen is an area with little bumps for your thumb, and below this is a d-pad which can be used to zoom (up/down) or scroll through scene modes (left/right). Below this, is the gallery button allowing you to view images and make post-capture adjustments. 

As the camera is waterproof to 10m, all the ports are hidden underneath a flap on the bottom, and to open it you need to pull a catch and slide the door sideways at the same time. Inside there's the battery, SD card slot, MicroUSB charging/ image transfer slot and a HDMI cable slot. When you first turn the camera on, there are a series of instructions on the screen about how to keep the camera clean and free from debris when shooting in sandy or watery conditions to avoid any issues. The W150 comes with a small cleaning brush to help with this. 

 


 

The camera has built-in Wi-Fi and Bluetooth allowing you to connect to a smart device, and the ability to send photos through while shooting. This can all be curated through the SnapBridge app, making it easy to gather and sort your images on the smartphone. There's also an airplane mode, for when you're travelling. 

Due to the camera being marketed as a very simple to use point and shoot camera suitable for the whole family, there are no manual modes to be found - you can toggle the AF assist and electronic VR on and off, and adjust the image size from large (13.2 megapixels) to medium (4 megapixels) or small (2 megapixels). There are also movie options of FullHD 1080p or 640p. 

Flash can be toggled to always fire, auto or off, and the self-timer mode offers options of off, 10s, self-portrait timer (5 seconds) or Smile Timer (camera waits for a smile to be detected before firing). 

Scene mode offers a variety of options:

  • Night scenes 
  • Close-ups
  • Photograph foood
  • Shoot under water
  • Underwater face framing (new)
  • Shoot at intervals
  • Take a series of pictures
  • Photograph fireworks
  • Shoot backlit scenes
  • Mirror
  • Add bubble effect
  • Add a neon effect
  • Add a cartoon effect
  • Take soft pictures 
  • Create a diorama effect 
  • Shoot a movie miniature (puts a film negative effect around the image)
  • Add light trails - takes a 25-sec exposure, for night skies etc
  • Picture-in-picture - choose a picture from your gallery and add another photo for it to sit inside.

Also under the scene mode menu are options to make your images brighter or darker by 2 steps and more or less vivid, as well as highlighting certain block colours (everything else will be black and white). 

For the kids, the camera has a setting called 'Variety Menu', which lets you have a bit more fun with the images. Voice messages can be attached to images and fun animated slide shows can be created. In the Scene menu, a 'Decorate' tab will appear in this mode, letting you put fun frames around your photos. 


 

Key Features

  • 13.2 megapixel CMOS sensor
  • 3x optical zoom, 6x Dynamic Fine Zoom
  • Electronic VR for stills and movies
  • FullHD 1080p video mode
  • Waterproof to 10m
  • Shockproof to 1.8m
  • ISO 125-1600 (Auto)
  • Flash (auto, always fire, off)
  • Wi-Fi, Bluetooth built-in
  • Blue, orange, white, floral and resort colour options

 

Nikon Coolpix W150 Handling


 

The camera is made from plastic, but feels very solid in the hand. It's a fairly ergonomic design, with an indent around the lens for your fingers to hold on to and easy to reach buttons. Those with larger hands may struggle but it's perfect for kids. There's no grippy surface, so the camera may become quite slippery when wet.

The menu navigation is very simple and well thought out to allow you to get to everything you'll need in just a few presses, with the option to go back a step at any point. 

 


 

Battery life - Battery life is rated at 220 shots according to Nikon, which is fairly typical of cameras of this type. 


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