Nikon CoolPix L18

Entry-level camera with a low price tag

Nikon CoolPix L18
  • Nikon CoolPix L18
  • Nikon CoolPix L18
  • Nikon CoolPix L18
  • Expert Rating

    3.25 / 5

Pros

  • Low price, simple interface

Cons

  • Pictures a little over-sharpened, some visible graininess, can't manually adjust ISO, somewhat sluggish

Bottom Line

Nikon's CoolPix L18 is a basic, entry-level compact camera that does little to separate itself from the pack. It will be fine for novice users but anyone more discerning will be frustrated by the image quality and speed issues.

Would you buy this?

With an entry-level price tag and features to match, Nikon's CoolPix L18 is a pretty basic compact camera. Its 8-megapixel sensor snaps reasonable pictures but its operation can be quite sluggish. However, if you're after a no-fuss, happy-snap unit then it may be up your alley.

We found the L18's pictures to be satisfactory for small and medium print sizes, but as expected more enthusiastic photographers will be disappointed with the output. Sharpness is fairly good, although edges do look a little soft at times. There was also some over-sharpening (this was corroborated by Imatest), although it wasn't too severe.

Chromatic aberration also had an impact: there was prominent purple fringing outdoors and haloing on our high-contrast chart shots. There was also some noticeable detail loss towards the corners of the frame.

Image noise was somewhat tough to measure, as the camera doesn't allow you to manually adjust ISO. We were forced to simply let it default to automatic ISO, which produced some fairly noisy images. It was a fine grain but it covered the pictures and resulted in a loss of clarity that was obvious at higher magnifications.

Colour balance was typical for a unit at this price point. With a focus on producing bright, enjoyable pictures rather than incredibly accurate ones, the overall tone is quite vivid. Reds and yellows in particular are noticeably oversaturated. Greens looked a little pale, but blues were almost spot-on. We also noticed the L18 had some minor exposure issues; most notably, whites often looked blown out and extremely bright.

The camera was a little on the slow side. Time between shots was quite quick at 1.9 seconds; however, the camera suffered 0.2 seconds of shutter lag and a 3.3 second start-up time, both of which are sluggish results. The burst mode is also less than speedy, capturing 1.8 frames per second.

The camera's features are fairly minimal, but that's no surprise considering its market position. As with all Nikon cameras it has Best Shot Selector, which is essentially a bracketing mode. Aside from that there is Face Detect and digital, but not optical, image stabilisation. ISO sensitivity apparently goes to 1600, but we couldn't verify this. White balance can be set via a list of presets or using the manual option.

The overall focus is clearly on simplicity, with an Easy Auto Mode specifically designed for novices. It takes all control away from the user and lets them focus on taking pictures, which should please amateurs.

Physically, the L18 is quite plain. It follows the same trend as past L series models. The camera is built from dull silver plastic and is quite sturdy, with a deceptive amount of weight behind it. The controls and interface will be familiar to anyone who has used other Nikon units. While they aren't perfect, they do the job.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?