Click on the 990 for 360-degree QTVR tour
The Nikon Coolpix 990 is the first of the new wave of 3.34-megapixel resolution digital cameras. It retains the best features of the Coolpix 950 like the razor sharp Nikkor 3x zoom lens, the closest macro capability of any digicam, the highly durable magnesium alloy body and the unique swiveling lens design.
It now includes many of the user-requested improvements (CF card slot on side, USB connectivity, improved battery life, better LCD) and adds powerful new features like multizone autofocus, autoexposure bracketing, Flexible Program mode and a 7-blade iris diaphragm for real depth of field control.
The 990's 3.34 megapixel CCD delivers a non-interpolated image
resolution of 2048 x 1536 pixels with an uncompressed TIFF
image file of just under 10MB in size. Recording modes include still image
capture at up to 2 frames per second in full resolution, 320 x 240 QVGA at 30
frames per second and a new movie mode that shoots 40 seconds of (silent) QVGA
Motion-JPEG at 15 fps.
Nikon has finally answered the question of how to keep the lens cap with the
camera. They now include a "lens string" that slips around the joint between the
two sections of the camera.
The Coolpix 990 has an exclusive Multi-Area autofocus mode for quick composition without interruption. It searches the 5 zones for closest subject or sharpest subject. It is a direct descendant of Nikon pro film and D1 digital SLR cameras.
The 990 also features a 50-step manual focus, Nikon’s 256 element Matrix metering and new 256 element Matrix white balance system to insure the best possible exposure and color balance in every shot.
New is a 7-blade iris diaphragm for true depth of field control and versatile exposure control with four exposure modes:
In the "P"rogrammed automatic mode there are more options available via the Flexible Program mode. By rotating the command dial the "P" changes to a "P*" and each click brings up a different combination of shutter speed and aperture values that yield the same exposure.
Exposure compensation and Auto Bracketing capabilities are also included.
The 990 has a USB 1.1 interface which makes downloading those large
image files to a PC or Mac a snap. This is a dual I/O port supporting both
USB and serial RS-232 connections. Nikon does not supply a serial
port cable and the NikonView software is not capable of controlling the camera
other than image downloads. The 990 now has user-selectable video output (NTSC or PAL).
eliminates the need to build two different camera models but the 990
will come in two different color schemes. The North American cameras will be
charcoal grey with a purple colored finger grip (as shown here), the European
models will be the black and red scheme used on the Coolpix 950's.
Another thing that can be connected to the Coolpix 990 (or the 880) USB port is the new MC-EU1 wired remote control. The MC-EU1 allows you to trip the shutter and operate the zoom lens in A-Rec or M-rec modes. In Playback mode it lets you scroll forward or backwards through the stored images.
An even more powerful record mode operation is available for time-lapse recording. There are two modes: Interval Mode A begins when you push the release button and repeats at the programmed intervals. Interval Mode B is the same but the camera begins automatically after a preset amount of time has elapsed.
The remote's shutter button is like the one on the camera and has a half-press position to set focus and exposure and trips the shutter when fully depressed. The LCD panel on the MC-EU1 shows the settings for the interval modes and also displays the camera modes (A-Rec, M-Rec, Play) and "Busy" while writing to the CF card. There is a builtin illuminator that can be turned on so you can see the LCD display in the dark.
Note: The Nikon 990 requires firmware v1.1
or greater to use the MC-EU1. Most 990's shipped with v1.0
The 990's CompactFlash card slot is located on the side, making it easy to change cards without removing it from a tripod. Nikon is supplying a 16MB 8x high performance Lexar CF card.
This is a CompactFlash Type I slot, it is not Microdrive compatible.
Nikon has bundled one of Lexar Media's new and fast 8x speed, 16MB USB-enabled JumpSHOT CompactFlash cards. Included is a mail-in coupon for the JumpSHOT USB cable for $9.99 (50% discount) if you'd like to have an untethered way of downloading your images.
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Coolpix 990 Specifications
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