Nikon learns from J1 woes with the J2, L610 zooms long for cheap

Nikon J2

The interchangeable lens Nikon J2 is not part of the classic D line-up (D3200, D800, and company) but an updated version of the company’s entry-level, mirrorless Nikon 1 series. As the name would suggest, the J2 is a tweaked version of the J1, a camera released to lukewarm reviews last year. The good news? The asking price has dropped to $549 with a 10-30mm kit lens, and the LCD screen is dramatically improved. The 3-inch LCD display was bumped up to 921K pixels from 460K, which is similar to the more expensive Nikon 1 V1. One of biggest complaints about the original J1 was its steep price compared to the competition, namely the Olympus E-PM1. The J2 will leave the gap much slimmer. The bad news? The J2 still uses the CX format, a 10.1-megapixel imaging sensor of which we’re not overly fond. The camera works well in good light and with the flash, but in low light we found the images to be very soft. This sensor is much smaller than Micro Four Thirds and APS-C imagers. See our original J1 review for more details.

nikon j2 red front mirrorless cameraNikon also enhanced the overall feel of the J2 with a metallic body rather than plastic, and added orange and red color options for those who want to make a fashion statement.

Beyond pretty colors, a new Creative Mode setting was added to the mode dial. In our review of the J1, we complained there were no scene modes as a specific setting on the mode dial. We’re sure we weren’t the only ones griping, so it’s good to see Nikon make the adjustment. Turn to Creative and you can quickly move into panorama, miniature, night landscape, backlighting and night portrait settings. This will also get you into P/A/S/M modes, if you feel like flexing your photographic muscles.

nikon j2 lens mirrorless camera interchangable lensesNikon also announced a new lens for the series, an 11-27.5mm 2.5x Nikkor optical zoom that equals 30-74mm in 35mm terms. For those who like to take their cameras 130 feet underwater, the accompanying WP-N1 case will do the trick. The new housing ($749) is compatible with the J2 and older J1 with the 10-30mm lens.

Coolpix L610

The company also announced the AA-powered Coolpix L610 ($249, due September), a 16-megapixel CMOS digicam with a 14x zoom (25-300mm). Beyond the 16-megapixel stills, the camera also shoots 1080p videos with stereo sound and has an HDMI out. Lens-shift vibration reduction to help eliminate blur and there’s a 3-inch LCD to frame and review your shots. The lens has two ED glass elements and lens construction consisting of 11 elements in 10 groups. For photographing close-up subjects, macro shooting is possible from as close as approximately 0.4 inches (at wide-angle setting).

nikon l610 front angle point and shoot cameraLike many new digicams offering Smart Auto or iAuto, the L610 has an Easy Auto Mode that automatically selects from among six Scene Modes including portrait, landscape, night portrait, night landscape, close-up and backlighting, to fit the most common scenes. A red dot movie-record button enables one-touch recording at anytime.

nikon l610 back lcd digital camera point and shootNikon plans to introduce additional cameras later this year, so stay tuned.

Product Review

The Black Shark gaming phone takes a big bite out of your free time, but the software sinks it

The world is being treated to an ever-increasing number of high-powered gaming phones. With so many great options already out, is there room for another? The Black Shark thinks so. But is it any good? We find out.

Canon holiday sale features the Rebel T6 2-lens kit for just $449

If you have a budding photographer in your life in need of a real camera, the Canon EOS Rebel T6 could make the perfect gift. Canon is currently offering the camera in a two-lens bundle for just $449 through December 29.

From DSLRs to mirrorless, these are the best cameras you can buy right now

From entry-level models to full-frame flagships, many cameras take great photos and video. The best digital cameras, however, push the industry forward with innovative sensors and improved usability, among other things. Here are our…
Product Review

Meet Z6, the breakout star in Nikon's new mirrorless lineup

The Nikon Z6 is the sibling to the new mirrorless Z7 -- but for some photographers, the cheaper Z6 may be the better option. Read where the $2,000 camera beats the $3,400 one (and where it doesn’t) in our Nikon Z6 review.

The best mirrorless cameras pack all the power of a DSLR, minus the bulk

Mirrorless cameras offer a lot of photography firepower, inside a compact body. Explore the best mirrorless cameras, from the pro-level to the beginner-friendly shooters, in this guide.

Photography News: Startup redesigns tripod heads ‘inside out’ for more flexibility

Well, this doesn't look like the ball heads that we've seen before. Instead of designing a tripod ball head with a small cutout, the Colorado Tripod Company created one with most of the ball exposed, allowing for more possible angles.

MIT science photographer isn’t an artist, but her work could fill galleries

Felice Frankel is an award-winning photographer, but she doesn't consider herself an artist. As a science photographer, she has been helping researchers better communicate their ideas for nearly three decades with eye-catching imagery.
Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: Folding canoes and ultra-fast water filters

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!

Leica targets street photographers with a pricey camera bundle

Described by the camera company as "your perfect companion in the city," Leica's Street Kit comprises a Leica CL camera body, a 23mm (35mm full-frame equivalent) F2 lens, batteries, a handgrip, and a black leather carrying strap.
Social Media

Snapchat facial recognition could soon power a new portrait mode, code suggests

Digging into Snapchat's code suggests a handful of upcoming camera features, including a portrait mode. The feature appears to use facial recognition A.I. to blur the background. The code also suggests an updated camera interface.
Social Media

#ThrowbackThursday is only the start: Instagram hashtags for every day of the week

Not getting your hashtag fill with #ThrowbackThursday or #ManCrushMonday? Here's a list of some of the more popular Instagram hashtags, so you can outfit your next post with the proper tag, regardless of what day it is.

Photographers can now customize the layout of Lightroom Classic controls

Tired of scrolling past Lightroom tools that you don't use? Adobe Lightroom Classic now allows users to reorganize the Develop panel. The update comes along with new sharing options in Lightroom CC, and updates to the mobile Lightroom app.
Social Media

Instagram could be making a special type of account for influencers

Instagram influencers fall somewhere between a business profile and a typical Instagram, so the company is working on developing a type of account just for creators. The new account type would give creators more access to analytical data.

Best Products of 2018

Our reception desk has so many brown boxes stacked up, it looks like a loading dock. We’re on a first-name basis with the UPS guy. We get new dishwashers more frequently than most people get new shoes. What we’re trying to say is: We…