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Nikon just unveiled their new flagship ultra-zoom, the Coolpix P510 which features a 42X optical zoom lens. This lens starts at an ultra-wide 24mm and reaches a jaw-dropping  1000mm in 35mm-equivalent terms. This super-telephoto reach is unprecedented for a fixed-lens camera and makes it highly suitable for wildlife and bird photography. By comparison a Canon 800m F/5.6 lens weighs 4.5kg (10lbs), measures 46cm long and costs over $13,000 USD!

The Nikon Coolpix P510 is a prosumer or bridge camera, complete with manual controls and – for the first time on a Nikon ultra-zoom – dual control-dials. There are also dual zoom controllers, one around the shutter-release and one on the lens barrel. Since a very long zoom requires plenty of stability it makes sense to support the lens and therefore have the zoom controller with reach of the left hand.

Nikon Coolpix P510

This digital cameras uses Nikon’s new 16 megapixels CMOS sensor which promises better low-light capabilities and resolution than previous generations. This sensor is also used a number of other Coolpix cameras which we will present shortly. Going with a CMOS sensor let the P510 support full 1080 HD video capture and fast 7 FPS continuous. Framing can be done with the large 920K pixels 3″ tilting LCD or a built-in EVF which is highly recommended for shooting hand-held as it gives additional stability. The LCD on the other hand is most practical when shooting from a tripod and at odd angles.

This Coolpix is brimming with automatic and advanced features, including multi-shot night scenery capture, HDR and sweeping panoramas up to 360°. This model also features a built-in GPS unit.  The Nikon Coolpix P510 is schedule to be available this month in the US for $429 USD and next month in Canada for $449 CDN.

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