The S60 performs adequately, but lags in its class. It takes 0.6 seconds to focus and shoot in bright conditions and 1 second in dim light. Shot-to-shot time falls slightly below average at 2 seconds, but turning on the flash added only 0.2 seconds to the wait. In burst mode, it captured 1.3 frames per second, which isn't great, but we were able to get some impressive action shots all things considered. The only real disadvantage is its 2.4-second time from power on to first shot.
Photo quality is mixed. The photos can be good to very good in well-lit conditions. On one hand, it exhibits accurate colour and exposure. In outdoor shots, colours are very good and natural. Indoors, as with many cameras, the auto white balance produces overly warm results; we recommend either using the camera's manual white balance or the appropriate preset.
However, the lens isn't very good. In addition to overall soft photos, there's quite a bit of pincushion distortion, making the distortion control setting pretty much mandatory (though it's not the default). And while noise is acceptable and fairly typical for its class up to and including ISO 200, at ISO 400 it looks like Nikon simply throws a strong blur across the photo and it gets progressively worse from there. Video quality was typical of its class: 30fps VGA is good for Web use, but not much else, and you can't zoom while shooting.
(Shorter bars indicate better performance)
|Time to first shot||Typical shot-to-shot time (flash)||Typical shot-to-shot time||Shutter lag (dim)||Shutter lag (typical)|
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
There's no denying the Nikon Coolpix S60 is a hot camera design. It would be great if the touch-screen interface was a little snappier in areas and a physical zoom rocker or at least moving the onscreen one higher on the display would be welcomed. Finicky snapshooters will definitely find menu navigation frustrating and the photos not up to par with its price. Of course, if you're itching for a stylish pocket/purse camera for casual use, the S60 is just that.
Additional editing by Cristina Psomadakis