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Now that's just silly... but wow!

26 July 2018

I've never really been a camera enthusiast.

Yes, these days I use cameras to earn a living but to me they're simply a tool, like any other that might be needed to turn an idea into a finished product.

However, I must admit to a fascination with some of the super-crazy cameras that have appeared on the market in recent times.

The first of these "wow" cameras to catch my attention was the Nikon Coolpix P900, a consumer-grade camera with an astonishing zoom capability of up to a 2000mm lens equivalent.

I'm sure all Aardvark readers will have seen the astonishingly impressive zoom of this camera featured in numerous YouTube videos but even when you're expecting it, the effect is still rather mind-boggling

Well now they've gone even further and released the Coolpix P1000.

Forget about a 2000mm equivalent lens, the P1000 has a 3000mm version which can deliver 125x optical zoom!

Not only have the optics been boosted by 50% but the camera will now do 4K video (the P900 was only a 1080p camera).

This means that if you're prepared to make do with a regular HD image, you can use digital zoom to boost the "reach" of the P1000 even further than that provided by the awesome lens setup.

But seriously, what use is a camera like this?

I strongly suspect that once you've wowed all your friends with the fantastic ability to pull scenes up from miles away and once you've spent a few evenings looking at the surface of the moon in stunning detail, the novelty will wear off the uber-long lens.

However, just pawing over the spec sheet, the P1000 seems to be a far better camera than the P900 in other ways and I'm really tempted to plonk down some hard-earned cash (when I have enough of it) on this new offering.

An external microphone capability is a "must have" for me, given that my videos are not just about image but also about information, commentary and capturing dialog.

The 4K video capability is also a big plus -- not because I intend to publish much 4K footage but when you're capturing things like aircraft (full-sized or models), life becomes so much easier in 4K. You can keep your zoom to a minimum and then crop in on the 4K image to create a 2K or 1080p subframe. Stabilising the image in edit also becomes much more effective, since such stabilisation sometimes requires significant cropping which, in the case of native 1080p footage, reduces the resolution and produces a much "softer" result.

I'll give this camera a little time in the market before I really consider buying it and that'll also provide time for more reviews to hit the Net. I don't always trust the first tranche of reviews because they're often done by people who are awe-struck or who rush their reviews in order to capitalise on being "first" to get them out the door.

By about Christmas time, these cameras should have been around long enough to have proven themselves or for any major flaws and weaknesses to have been identified by users.

But wow, a camera with 50% more zoom than the P900 -- that is simply very, very impressive, as you can see below.

Anyone else thinking of splashing out $1,500 or so on a camera like this?

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