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Nikon Reviews: Best Nikon Compact Cameras

While Nikon is more known for their DSLRs, they have a few compact cameras often worth a look. Nikon point-and-shoots are a bit harder to judge without a full hands-on review--we've seen a few gems, but there's also a few that really didn't pan out.

Nikon offers compact cameras for nearly every budget, and it appears that Nikon's naming strategy tends to indicate price and level as well. The S-models ex. Coolpix S6500) are mid-line options. L models on the other hand are very basic with minimal features but a low price. The P tends to designate a more advanced camera with highlighting features like a larger sensor or a bigger zoom. AW designates their rough, waterproof models. The numbers following that can also indicate their level--for example the Coolpix S3300 has fewer features than the S6300. Numbers will also indicate when it was released, with the S6500 being newer than the S6300.

Be careful with the lowest budget options, they tend to be slow and snap pretty basic shots. Nikon's advanced options have recieved several decent reviews from us in the past, with the middle options being hit or miss. Here are Nikon's best compact cameras.

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Nikon COOLPIX P310

Nikon’s P-series currently represents their high-end compact lineup. The line came to the fore with the arrival of the P5000 in 2007, an enthusiast compact that blended the separation between point and shoot and DSLR. Subsequent models have ...

Grade: C+ Price: $400.00

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Nikon COOLPIX S32

While the Nikon S32 doesn't sit at the top of the category for waterproof cameras by a long shot, it does sit near the top for cameras under $125. Most budget cameras have a slow, 1 fps burst speed, but this little guy at least hits four. The ...

Grade: C+ Price: $160.00

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Nikon Coolpix S33

The Nikon Coolpix S33 is hiding quite a few surprises for a budget camera. While users will find better quality with pricier models like the Olympus TG-3, there's not a whole lot of cameras with similar features for under $150.First off, the i...

Grade: C+ Price: $139.00

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Nikon Coolpix S3700

Budget cameras aren't usually anything to write home about, and the Nikon Coolpix S3700 is no exception. It offers a basic set of features that will get the job done for some consumers, but certainly isn't anything to get excited about.The...

Grade: C+ Price: $195.00

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Nikon COOLPIX L32

The phrase "you get what you pay for" certainly applies to cameras, and the $120 Nikon Coolpix L32 budget cam is no exception. The basic camera might be suited for some, but as with any budget model, proceed with extreme caution.The L32 ...

Grade: C+ Price: $85.00

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Nikon COOLPIX L30

We're pleased to see that Nikon is sticking with a 1/2.3" size sensor with their budget models, instead of shrinking it down to hit the right price point. What you will sacrifice for this price is speed, with just a 1.1 fps burst mode, th...

Grade: C+ Price: $149.00

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Nikon COOLPIX S6300

Nikon's higher-end S-series models have really impressed in the last year or so. They are responsive and have the latest backside illuminated CMOS sensors. The S6300 is pretty compact for its impressive 10x zoom lens and offers key upgrades to...

Grade: C+ Price: $190.00

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Nikon COOLPIX S3300

The S3300 and S4300 are essentially identical other than the S4300's larger 3-inch LCD. Both have 16 megapixel sensors and a useful 6x zoom with a 26mm wide-angle. The video, as you'd expect from a CCD sensor, is 720p. Unless you need the ...

Grade: C Price: $170.00