Product Reviews (29)
This camera is very portable...
Strengths: small size, lightweight, 3x zoom, picture quality
Weakness: no manual focus
This camera is very portable because if of it's size and weight. The picture quality is excellent and it comes with a lot of features such as movie mode and scene assist. In my experience, the battery life is quite good. I'm still using the included battery more than a month after getting the camera.
By tip70 - Jun 18, 2003
Strengths: Good camera for the price. Easy to use for the novice.
Weakness: Very slow on capturing the image on the Flash Card. Seems like 5-10 seconds. Also not very good inside when the lights are not bright. Will not pickup actors on the stage unless you are close.
I've had the Coolpix 3100 for 2-3 years now and it's been a very easy camera to use. I use it primarily for still pictures; preferably outside.
By pbrockma - Jan 16, 2006
This isn't an absolutely terrible...
Strengths: small design, macro
Weakness: color noise, sharpness, not great photos
This isn't an absolutely terrible camera, but the two stars does correspond to "It works, but would not purchase again" here. In bright light, it performs well but if you want great pictures you might have to adjust the white balance, which takes time because of poor (and static; no customization) menus. The color noise, undoubtedly because of it using higher ISO's without telling the user, is not good. The sharpness is also below average. Most digital cameras these days will give you decent photos, but for something better spend more and get an Olympus 5060 or 8080, or perhaps the Canon A85 with 128mb of Compact Flash for $230.
By gatoatigrado - Oct 24, 2004
I bought it for the small size and...
Strengths: Small size, sharp 3 Mega Pixel pictures, Great battery life, exelent optical and digital zoom
Weakness: Lack of lens filters
I bought it for the small size and the 3 mega pixel resolution. The battery life on Ni-HM batteries was bad until Nikon sent me the firmware update on th internet then battery life improved dramaticly! I also started using a faster card that also improves battery life. I took it snowmobileing all winter, kept it in the inside pocket of my jacket, and it worked great with the cold and all.
By fsglidden - Mar 21, 2004
This is my 5th Nikon, including 3...
Strengths: Good blend of features, size, weight, picture quality, adequate software bundle, good online support.
Weakness: Very badly needs rechargeable batteries and charger - at least it can use standard AA NiMH cells instead of an oddball propietary design.
This is my 5th Nikon, including 3 SLRs and 2 digitals. They take great images and all work more or less the same way, so relearning menus and controls is a minor issue.
I was looking for a replacement for my Coolpix 880 that got crunched on vacation. I really got used to the 880, but the more I use the 3100, I think it is a better overall camera for "point and shooters", and it has a great feature set for that market.
Nikon added some limited onboard editing capability, USB or card reader downloading, date imprinting, black and white or sepia conversion. The auto mode does very well in most situations, but there are fourteen different settings (4 on the dial, 10 in the menu) for special lighting (portrait, landscape, incandescent and flourescent light, backlit, fireworks, etc).
The macro capability allows shots within two inches, but the flash can be overpowering that close, so care must be taken with the lighting.
The LCD screen is barely visible in bright daylight, about like the 880's, but have had some success by shading the screen with my left hand.
I thought the small size might be a problem, but the 3100 has a good feel in the hand - just the right weight and size, and the controls are well placed.
The software is good for basic editing, and the manual is clear and concise.
The 3100 eats batteries. Suggest at least 2 or 3 sets of 2000+ MAH AA's and charger. Choose the charger carefully, since recharge times and methods vary widely.
By Jimmbbo - Aug 18, 2003
This is the way digital cameras...
Strengths: Micro size, image quality, manual exposure settings, battery life (w\3.0v lithium), uses CF, durable, lots of shooting modes, on/off switch works great
Weakness: small screen, when batteries get weak images may suffer, eye piece is a waste, no add-on lenses
This is the way digital cameras with kill film!
The 3100 is so small you can and will take it everywhere. smaller than your cell phone and awesome pictures to boot.
I have been using this bad boy for 2+ months and have shot 2000+ images. I use it for work. I'm a photographer.
The images are great(some cameras,SLR/SLR digital will do better)for a camera this small.
Macro=B (I dont use)
Now this camera is what it is, a $300+ personal digi-camera, but thats why you want it. The coolpix 4300 is a little too big, expensive and you dont really need the extra pixels(just turn up the res. on the 3100 when you need it ie: groupshots/landscapes).
Dont waste a lot of your hard earned cash!
Buy this camera, wait 2 years, and buy the new $300+ Nikon then. I have SLR lenses that I paid over $1000 each and rarely use, I use the Coolpix 3100 almost every day!
Photography is supposed to be fun , and with this little bad boy it is!
Other cameras I have bought and used this summer:
This was my favorite.
So get one, have fun, and take lots of pictures.
I dropped this camera HARD first day out. And besides some ugly scratches it has worked fine.
By hatrick00 - Aug 19, 2003
As soon as I received this I took...
Strengths: compact, lightweight, but takes great pictures.
Weakness: no audio in movie mode but that is not important to me. I bought for a still camera.
As soon as I received this I took off for GOBA a one week bicycle trip around Ohio. Carried in my bike bag over train tracks and through the rain. Then biking and hiking in Pennsylvania. I took over 80 pictures and had no trouble with battery life. Carried an extra set of rechargeables. I have made 8x10 pictures that are great. This is my second digital camera. The other is an Olympus 2100. Completely satisfied.
By rubas - Jul 3, 2003
I bought this camera mainly for...
Strengths: Date Time Imprint. Ease of use. Good pictures. Good software.
Weakness: Picture quality could be sharper. LCD hard to see in sunlight. Dial too easy to inadvertently change. Need manual controls for macro. Battery life suddenly ends.
I bought this camera mainly for the date imprint feature, as I send out a lot of emails with inserted pictures for environmental causes and need to document the date that I took the pictures. The camera has been great for this purpose, although the picture quality seems not quite up to par with my friend's Canon G2, lacking a little in image sharpness. But I'm new to digital photography.I would like to see other cameras have the date imprint feature.
By janvandersloot - Aug 14, 2003
I bought this for a European...
Strengths: small size, image quality, easy to use, easy menu access
Weakness: none - best used with rechargeable batteries.
I bought this for a European vacation - took over 350 pictures on a 128 meg card. The images are very sharp and make great 8x10 prints. It has great features, like "museum" function, and I took great interiors of cathedrals. The rechargeable batteries didn't last long but Nikon offer a software fix - a free download which solves the problem.
I've used a lot of professional cameras - 35mm and 6x6 cm, and the sharpness of this camera is impressive.
By paulddb - Aug 9, 2003
Good camera, my first digital and...
Strengths: Flexibility,includes many automated settings, small and compact.
Weakness: Lots of features that are hard to memorize.
Good camera, my first digital and I love it. It has lots of features that I might not use and a lot that I need to remember to use. Just like any electronic gadget these days, it has much more that the person needs. If I start shopping for a camera all over again, I would buy this same camera.
By markus88 - Sep 8, 2003
I like my 3100 very much. Got a...
Strengths: Great picture quality. light weight. ease of use.
Weakness: I found it hard to view my videos and pictures using the buttons. But that can be my doing.
I like my 3100 very much. Got a great deal on it from the 350.00 price. I also bought a card reader to upload my pictures and videos without using up the camera's batteries. To me, if anyone is looking for a starter camera, the Nikon 3100 is ideal to get you going. With all the photo taking options you'll be well on your way.
By Angelknight - Jul 8, 2003
Having done a great deal of...
Strengths: Most xlnt pix,great battery life,lots of fun to use w/all the different modes you can select,easy to use
Weakness: Only one...it's so light it's hard to steady for telephoto shots.That's probably just me.
Having done a great deal of research before diving into digital photography,I bought this camera and instantly fell in love with it.What's not to like.
My photography has improved considerably due to the fact that I can immediately see what I've done.This camera is an exceptional value.Everyone I show my pix to are amazed at their overall quality.I could go on and on...I most heartily recommend the 3100 to anyone looking for a quality 3MP camera.
By Rixter000 - Nov 1, 2003
I went to 2 major electronics...
Strengths: Picture Quality, Design, Size/Feel, Scenes, User Interface, Smoothness of grip and mode selector.
Weakness: no sound in movies, software for osx is lame, doesnt have red-eye remover, however iPhoto does a great job.
I went to 2 major electronics stores to purchase the Canon A70, however they were sold out and on back order. I never seriously looked at the Coolpix 3100 because of the hype surrounding other cameras. When I picked up this camera after handling the A70, I was practically sold. After doing research online, I concluded that the 3100 was the one I wanted to spend the day with. I'm not saying its better than the A70, I just liked it better because of its feel and similar picture quality. The A70 felt like a heavy, clunky out-dated machine the 3100 has a much better grip, size, and feel. This camera is much more portable than the A70 I wouldnt trade it for anything.
By DiegoMontero - Aug 1, 2003
For the price I paid for this...
Strengths: Ease of use, features, picture clarity
Weakness: battery life
For the price I paid for this camera ($349) I am extremely pleased. The camera is small, light-weight, easy to use, and the included editing software was perfect for my needs. I bought a battery recharger when I bought the camera and have extra batteries ready. I reviewed several other models in this price range, and I believe I got a great deal.
By mciar - Jun 2, 2003
I WOULD BUY THIS CAMERA AGAIN OR A...
Strengths: SMALL BUT, IT'S GREAT TO HAVE AS A STARTER CAMERA.
Weakness: NOT GOOD WITH BATTERYS,EATS THEM UP.
I WOULD BUY THIS CAMERA AGAIN OR A 4MP MAYBE IF THEY CAN MAKE THEM AS SMALL. BUT LIKE I SAID TO START OFF THIS IS THE BEST & SO IS THE PRICE.
By jenn24butterfly - Jan 20, 2004
canon powershot a70 is MUCH better...
Weakness: no battery life, i don't think it's possible to take 20 pictures with flash on. and the movie mode is poor (+ no sound). the software that comes with is only ok.
canon powershot a70 is MUCH better than this one. if you want better picture quality, longer battery life and better software, go for the canon powershot a70
By ademkader - Jan 16, 2004
STAY AWAY from this camera!!! What...
Strengths: Compact design, picture quality
Weakness: Value for money, Battery life, Software issues (firmware update).
STAY AWAY from this camera!!!
What good is a digital camera if you can't take more than 3 pictures with new and fully charged Nikel MetalHydride batteries?
This is not an inexpensive camera so the buyer should expect and receive a quality product. Even the Nikon tech support admitted that this camera model has a lot of issues so save your money and spend it wisely with either a Sony or heck a disposable 35MM (at least with a disposable you know you didn't pay $350 so can't expect too much).
By sfo2yul - Jul 11, 2003
My husband bought me this for...
Strengths: small and easy to use.
Weakness: none that I have found
My husband bought me this for christmas. I never wanted a digital camera but I do love this one. I take it everywhere with me and love it. My daughter is getting married soon and it will be great to have for that.I am still using the first set of batteries that came with the camera, and have found no problems.I use it every day and download the pics to my home computer and start shooting again. I can't say enough good things about it. It is perfect for camera illerates like myself.
By catrowe1 - Jan 20, 2004
I am impressed with the sharpness...
Strengths: Ease of use, simplicity, light, compact, 14 scene modes, sharp pictures, can use with single hand including manipulation of all functions, uses 2 AA batteries, great macro function, great price!
Weakness: Movie mode has no sound recording.
I am impressed with the sharpness and ease of use with this camera. As being my first digital camera ever, I found it to be extremely user friendly. It's so light and small that it fits nicely in one hand. All functions can be performed with just using one hand. It's automatic and manual functions are so easy to use. It looks great in appearance, too. I highly recommend this camera, as well as using AA rechargeable batteries if you want to save money. Also, a CF card with 256 MB is convenient if you take lots of pictures!
By wallynov - Jun 29, 2003
My camera came with one dead pixel...
Strengths: Macro, small size, weight, ease of use.
Weakness: build quality, battery life, no auto-focus assist in dim light, editing software
My camera came with one dead pixel and when I inserted the newly charged batteries, the "low battery" signal came on almost immediately. Tried different batteries and same thing happened. I just don't think 2 batteries for a digicam is enough. When I brought camera back to store, they said that's the second 3100 returned today (other camera had the lens pop off). Someone else in line at customer service brought their's back the day before because the camera would shut off and not come back on for awhile.
Software does not allow you to rotate pictures upon download. You have to bring the picture into an editing program supplied. Just an extra step to view those portrait shots that seems unnecessary.
The pictures that I was able to take were very good, though. And the camera was very easy to use. I am going to exhange it for the Canon A70.
By BookemDano - May 29, 2003
Purchased for vacation in...
Strengths: Lightweight, easy to operate, great pictures.
Weakness: Does not come with rechargable batteries or charger.
Purchased for vacation in Yellowstone, took great photos, although somewhat poor results during dusk hours. May try manual settings during low light conditions. Bought rechargable batteries which lasted all day. Great little camera.
By dgb05 - Jul 30, 2003
Overall worth the money. Since I...
Strengths: Easy to use.
Weakness: Bug with the Software while using on Windows 2000 pro. Then I downloaded the laster from the manufacture website.
Overall worth the money. Since I live in India and buy online and paying 350USD plus custom duty I had to be extra caution.
But, when I got the camara in my hand my heart said - Excellent product for Amateur.
By manjusum - Dec 8, 2003
This camera is very easy to use,...
Strengths: Easy to use. Great first time digital camera.
This camera is very easy to use, and has great picture quality. I enjoy using the black & white, sepia tones, and halo filters. The price was very low at ($285). I have not have any problem with the battery life as other users have stated, Each battery lasts about a month, and I use my camera a lot. I also find the software very easy to use, but I do recommend watching the tutorial disc that comes with the camera to go over all the details.
By tfjjmc - Jun 29, 2003
WHAT IS THE DEAL WITH THAT BATTERY LIFE ON THE CP3100
Strengths: LOVE THE QUALITY OF THE PICTURES AND ALL THE DIFFERENT OPTIONS
Weakness: THE BATTERY LIFE IS ABSOLUTELY HORRIBLE IVE TRY'D EVERYTHING I AM RUNNING OUT OF OPPTIONS HERE
I HAVE TRY'D TO CHANGE BRANDS OF RECHARGEABLE LITHIUM BATTERIES AND HAVE GOTTEN 1GB CARDS HAVE LOWERED THE SIZE OF THE PICS I DONT KNOW WHAT ELSE TO DO...CAN SOMEONE PLEASE FILL ME IN ON THERE LIL SECTETE PLEASE
By SPB840 - Dec 25, 2006
DO NOT BUY THIS CAMERA!
Strengths: SIZE,EASY TO USE.
Weakness: BATTERY LIFE IS TERRIBLE.
THE BATTERY LIFE ON THIS CAMERA STARTED TO CHANGE AFTER 6 MONTHS.NOW I CAN NOT EVEN TAKE IT OUT FOR A DAY TRIP.MY CAMERA SITS IN ITS BOX IN THE CLOSET. CAMERA DIES AFTER 5-10 PICTURES. I FOUND SEVERAL REVIEWES SIMILAR TO THIS ON OTHER SITES TONIGHT AND I HOPE TELLING THE TRUTH ABOUT THIS CAMERA WILL PROMPT NIKON TO RECALL THE DEFECTIVE MODELS.I FEEL VERY ANGRY ABUT THE MONEY SPENT AND THE FACT THAT I DO NOT HAVE THE RESOURCES TO PURCHASE ANOTHER DIGITAL.WHEN I DO IT CERTAINLY WILL NOT BE A NIKON.
By DGALKIEWICZ - Oct 27, 2005
Pros: - Everything can be operated...
Strengths: compact, low cost/quality, movie capture
Weakness: no rechargable battery inside, can not use with AA alkaline battery.
- Everything can be operated by only one hand, very compact and fit to hand grip perfectly.
- Good quality picture in day outdoor
- It's automatic function works well in supportive condition
- Pictures are grainy in low light condition
- No sound for movie
- No manual setting
By mlx4647 - Oct 21, 2004
Nikon Coolpix 3100
Nikon Coolpix 3100 receives an overall TopTenREVIEWS score of 1.27 out of 4.00. It is ranked the #442 standard digital camera of all time. The overall rating represents an intelligent balance of features, value as a function of price to features, and a summary of reviews from a variety of sources. The TopTen REVIEWS' formula gives a picture of important consumer features, market value, and a...
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By TopTenREVIEWS.com - Jul 16, 2008
Nikon Coolpix 3100
Check out this model's price again as it will have inevitably dropped, making it competitive against the usual suspects from Sony Kodak et al.
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By pocket-lint.co.uk - Dec 16, 2003
Nikon Coolpix 3100
This is the "big brother" to the Coolpix 2100 that I just completed the review for. Pretty much identical, except for a 3.2 megapixel sensor instead of the 2100's 2MP CCD. Image quality was nearly identical to that of the 2100, the main differences being higher resolution (no surprise there), and somewhat higher image noise, most visible in my low light test shots. All in all though, the Coolpix...
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By Imaging Resource - Feb 18, 2003