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Nikon brings out new long-zoom Coolpix, 18-140mm DSLR lens, and small Speedlight flash

Nikon this morning announced a new long-zoom point-and-shoot in the Coolpix line, as well as a DSLR lens and a compact Speedlight flash. Here’s a look at each.

Coolpix L620

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While its optical zoom doesn’t come close to the recently announced Panasonic Lumix FZ70’s whopping 60x, Nikon’s just-unveiled Coolpix L620 puts a 14x zoom in a more compact, pocket-friendlier body. The L620 is an addition to the Coolpix long-zoom category, and will be available in September for $250.

The f/3.3-5.9 lens has a focal length of 25mm to 350mm (35mm equivalent), and uses a 1/2.3-inch, 18.1-megapixel back-illuminated CMOS sensor for better low-light performance. There’s also lens-shift optical image stabilization, and ISO range of 125 to 3,200. The L620 also features a redesigned rubberized grip for a better hold, and video capture has been enhanced to record up to 1080/60i. Nikon says these long-zoom cameras always do well for them.

Like many long-zoom cameras in this class, the L620 runs on AA batteries. While Nikon says this makes it for users on the go, we find that they suck up power very quickly, so get rechargeable versions. Other features include a 3-inch LCD and special effects like mono sepia that applicable for shooting video.

AF-S DX NIKKOR 18-140mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR

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The AF-S DX NIKKOR 18-140mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR lens is designed for both entry-level users and enthusiasts who are looking for a general purpose lens that can shoot from wide-angle to telephoto (7.8x), which Nikon says it’s ideal for shooting landscapes, architecture, portraits, or travel photography. The lens features four stops of image stabilization which Nikon says will ensure sharp photos and videos in low light or when handheld (on DX format at max telephoto). A silent wave motor means quieter autofocusing, and a seven-blade diaphragm gives that image blur when shooting portraits. The lens will be available later this month for $600.

SB-300 Speedlight

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Nikon also introduced a new easy-to-use Speedlight flash for DSLRs and select high-end Coolpix point-and-shoots with a hot shoe like the new Coolpix A and P7700. Unlike most DSLR flashes, the SB-300 is small, powered by 2 AAA batteries (it weighs 4.2 ounces with batteries). Ideal for both entry-level and advanced users, the flash has a tilt range of 120 degrees for creative bounce control. The SB-300 has a wide-angle of 18mm on the DX format and 27mm on the FX format. The flash will be available later this month for $150.