Nikon Coolpix P1000: Can a zoom be too big?

In 2015, I reviewed a Nikon camera called Coolpix P900, which is a “bridge camera”.

I did not know the term then, but I am now. A bridge camera is a bridge between a compact camera and a digital SLR camera or a single lens digital SLR camera.

At that time, I thought the P900 was a very good camera with a lens with an optical zoom of 83x, or the equivalent of a lens of 24 mm – 2000 mm in a 35 mm camera.

Basically, I thought the P900 was everything that most of us would need.

I guess Nikon thought I was wrong because I tried the new Nikon Coolpix P1000 ($ 999,, and it’s bigger and better than the P900 in almost all cases.

The P1000 is like the P900 on steroids. It is physically bigger and heavier and the built-in lens offers an incredible zoom range of 125x (24mm to 3,000mm).

I’ll go and I’ll say it: nobody really needs a zoom of up to 3,000 mm, but it’s really fun to see what you can do.

He could not buy a 3,000mm lens for his digital SLR camera if he wanted, but that did not prevent Nikon from installing one on the P1000.

I admire Nikon for creating a camera beast.

The first thing I noticed is how heavy it is. When you extend the zoom lens, the weight of the camera advances.

It is difficult but not impossible to hold the P1000 with the lens fully extended, especially with the image stabilization built into the camera.

The camera weighs a little over 3 pounds and measures 5.8 x 4.7 by 7.2 inches, which means you will not wear it around your neck all day without any discomfort.

The P1000 weighs 50 percent more than the P900 of 2 pounds.

The camera’s sensor captures 16-megapixel images with a resolution of up to 4,608 x 3,456 pixels.

It has an ISO speed range (film speed) of between 100 and 6,400 frames and can record up to 7 frames per second, but in short bursts and not continuously.

The lens has an aperture of f / 2.8 in the widest part and f / 8 in the maximum zoom.

The imaging and the lens system have a 4x digital zoom, so if you really want to experiment. The lens will reach the equivalent of a 12,000mm lens for a 35mm camera. It is a telescope territory and it is not really a way that, I hope, produces very good images.

The lens focuses from 1 foot to infinity on the widest side and from 23 feet to infinity on the telephoto side.

In macro mode, the focus can be 0.4 inches.

The viewfinder is not optimal. This is a small 1 cm OLED screen. The main screen is a 3.2-inch TFT LCD screen, but this is not a touchscreen, which is a shame for a $ 1,000 camera.

The camera’s battery is a weak point. The battery can store up to 250 photos or 1 hour and 20 minutes of video recording. For a camera the size of the P1000, it’s disappointing. If you buy the P1000, plan to buy some additional batteries.

The P1000 takes excellent videos at resolutions of up to 4K UHD (3840 x 2160 pixels at 30 frames per second).

The camera can record RAW files, which capture more data than JPG images, but each time you take a RAW photo. You can expect a delay of up to 5 seconds when processing the photo. During these 5 seconds. The camera does not respond, which is painful.

The built-in flash operates at approximately 41 feet.

Scene Modes

The P1000 really wants to help you take good pictures. There is a long list of scene modes that will change exposure settings in certain situations.

The thumb wheel on the top of the camera includes program settings for bird and moon photography.

I took photos of both at the camera’s maximum zoom, and both modes gave very good pictures.

A beautiful picture it took of the moon by stabilizing the camera against a stick in my garden. I found pelicans in White Rock Lake gathered under the Garland Road bridge.

Other scene modes include Beach, Simple panorama, Fireworks show, Food, Night landscape, Pet portrait, Snow, Sports, Sunset, Timelapse of movies and many more.

The P1000 pulls the SD cards but also has wireless connectivity. If you are loading the Nikon SnapBridge application on your smartphone or tablet, the camera can upload images to your smart device when taking photos or videos.


Nikon was kind enough to send two optional accessories for the Coolpix P1000, the Dot Sight, and a remote control.

To activate the remote control, you must disable the connection to the smart device, but you can zoom in and out on the remote control and set the aperture mode, shutter release, and ISO mode.

The remote control can release the shutter and start/stop videos. This is very convenient when you have the camera on a tripod and do not want to disturb the composition of your image when making adjustments.

The point finder is an alternative optical viewfinder with an adjustable point of light to help you keep track of distant subjects when you approach.

I took the P1000 on a trip around White Rock Lake to see how well it behaved, especially with extreme zoom with and without a tripod.

The P1000 is a big camera, but I’m a big guy with big hands and could carry and photograph. I had it on my shoulder, but that was what I had to do with the big cameras and glasses. When I was a press photographer, so it did not bother me.

With the lens extended, it is interesting to keep the camera still. I found myself looking for fixed objects to help me keep my goal.

A monopod or tripod would be useful. The 3,000mm lens made things interesting by shooting through the lake or attracting birds to the spillway.

Last thoughts

In general, I liked the P1000, but I’m not sure it’s suitable for everyone.

If I were an avid ornithologist or I was doing sports photography or wild animals, it would be a great camera to buy.

On vacation, you will definitely need the whole camera, but is the increase in size and weight a good compromise for the long-term goal?

It is interesting to note that Nikon still sells the P900, which is smaller and lighter and offers most of the P1000 lens range. Obviously, you see a market where both are viable.

If the idea of ​​this large zoom lens makes him dizzy, he is a good candidate to buy one.

Congratulations to Nikon for giving us options. The P1000 is very fun to use.

Advantages: the largest zoom lens; image stabilization; SmartBridge application.

Disadvantages: disappointing battery; heavy Difficult to maintain the maximum zoom.

Conclusion: the P1000 has more lenses than most of us need, but I had fun with that.