Nikon AW100

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Nikon AW100

Postby bernieq » Sat 14 Jul, 2012 4:27 pm

I’m curious to know if anyone has experienced a GPS failure with a Nikon AW100.

I bought one in Dec 2011 and all was fine until a week before a 10-day trip to Tassie (Feb 2012). I downloaded the GPS-A file (which provides data so the camera can get a position fix in just a few seconds), copied to the camera as usual and did an update – it failed. To cut short a long story of testing and elimination, the GPS function had failed.

I returned the camera to the retailer who nicely agreed to replace it with one off the shelf (otherwise I wouldn’t have a camera for the trip). It’s now been on half a dozen trips since – all good, until …...

Two weeks ago (Jul 2012), it failed again – exactly the same – GPS function died. No knocks, drops, or the like – it updated a few days prior, sat on the shelf, then failed another update.

I’ve again returned it and again the retailer was good enough to swap it for shelf stock. They say they’ve sold a lot of these cameras and not one return (apart from me!). I’ve searched the net for any similar problems without success.
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Re: Nikon AW100

Postby north-north-west » Sat 14 Jul, 2012 4:42 pm

You obviously have a unique aura that the camera can't cope with. I have a similar effect on mechanical watches - being on my wrist sends them haywire.
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Re: Nikon AW100

Postby bernieq » Sun 30 Dec, 2012 4:53 pm

Well, just 2 days before warranty expiration and the day before a trip, I downloaded the current GPS-A file and tried to apply it to the camera – it failed ! (exactly the same as described in the previous post - at least it wasn't 2 days after expiration :)

So that is now 3 out of 3 AW-100 cameras where the GPS has failed – returned it today for a full refund (I must say that the ‘Good Guys’ have been great).

I’ve wondered why no-one else seems to have had this problem until I met a guy with the same camera and asked if he’d had any issues “No, I don’t use the GPS” was his reply. Maybe I’m the only person frequently updating the satellite location file ?

Anyway, that’s the end of my flirtation with the ‘tough’ genre of camera – waterproof, GPS and light weight were features nice to have but it was at the cost of image quality. Now I’m looking for a replacement more in line with my previous camera – a Nikon Coolpix 8700.
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Re: Nikon AW100

Postby michael_p » Sun 30 Dec, 2012 7:28 pm

Thanks for posting this bernieq. I have been looking at this camera as a possible replacement for my current camera. Now I am not so sure.

Did a quick search and there are others who seem to have encountered the same problem. Very disappointing that such a trivial task should kill the GPSr functionality.

Thanks,
Michael.
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Re: Nikon AW100

Postby bernieq » Thu 10 Jan, 2013 7:16 pm

After three GPS failures (in the Nikon AW100) in 12 months, I’ve decided that geo-tagging my photos isn’t that important. So, in the search for a new camera for bushwalking, I’ve prioritised picture quality, zoom, weight – in a camera that has a viewfinder and good manual control.

The short list came down to 4 of the ‘super-zoom’ enthusiast cameras : Panasonic FZ200, Sony HX200V, Cannon SX50HS and Nikon P510.

The decision was for the FZ200. Having read the reviews, studied the sample pics, compared the features, the Panasonic finally won the day because of the lens – F2.8 max aperture across the whole zoom means a really useable lens in even overcast/dull conditions.

So, here is the first photo (hand-held, cropped - F 4, ISO 100, focal length 600mm, shutter 1/320 sec)
rosella.JPG

PS : and no GPS subsystem to die just before a trip !
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Re: Nikon AW100

Postby bernieq » Mon 01 Apr, 2013 7:50 pm

After a few trips and a lot of photos, I've learned enough about the FZ-200 to decide that I'm happy with it.

It certainly has vastly better picture quality than the AW-100 (no surprise there) but it's not weather-sealed at all - so I carry it in a small waterproof bag.

p1.JPG
Panorama - from Sunset Peak, overlooking Fohn Lake - NZ Feb 2013
The camera can stitch a reasonable panorama together in-camera but has a tendency to smudge detail too much - a slow sweep and good light are needed. However, it's not as good as the Nikon panorama output.


P2.JPG
Sunset over the Humbolt Range - NZ Feb 2013
The FZ-200 can handle difficult lighting quite well, sunrise/sets particularly. In most lighting, the camera performs very well - the zoom and image stablisation are fantastic.


p3.JPG
Climbing Waiau Pass - NZ Feb 2013
In general, auto exposure is pretty good but (my) scenery photos tend to look a little better with a small (post-processing) increase in contrast. The (genuine) battery performance is amazing - 9 days and 500 photos and the indicator showed 2/3 full

So, for me, the FZ-200 has been a good move. A total weight of 740g

All these comments are based on jpeg files - I haven't shot in the raw yet. Still a lot of discovery ahead.
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