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Digital Camera Gifts: Nikon Coolpix Rocks!

Updated on October 22, 2013

Two years ago, my daughter wanted a camera for her 17th birthday. She went through the options on the market, and finally presented me with a blue Nikon Coolpix camera as her top preference. At the time, the 12-ish megapixel unit was priced at just about $100, give or take. To me, this was fantastic.

Her previous camera was half the megapixels for just a little less than $100, so I knew this one should provide excellent quality. It did. We even used it to take our family's portrait for my parents' 50th wedding anniversary slide show. The combination of affordability and quality really impressed me. My daughter's not a photography pro, but she has a way to take great photos as needed.

This fall, our family planned a Legoland vacation. I knew that I didn't want to rely on my iPhone for photos of the adventure. However, I needed to keep my gadget costs down when I bought a camera for the trip. The cute little Coolpix camera pictured here was my choice. As I reviewed prices and megapixels, this gave me the best value for the camera quality. I didn't need a professional camera, just something that would provide me with a reliable on-off function when my phone battery ran low. Additionally, I wanted to be able to get a bit of video here and there. This camera was just under $100 and provided 20.1 MP quality. Nothing else in the price range came close.

I thought about buying the pink camera. My husband mentioned that he guessed I'd be doing all the picture taking if the camera was going to be pink. I thought better of it, sticking with the red one that he liked for our family picture taking. If you are getting a camera for Mom, don't get pink unless she loves the shade. If she is a fan, dive right in and indulge her!

Whether this is a gift for yourself or for a loved one, allow some lead time to get to know the camera. While many features are intuitive, I failed to bring my instruction book along on the trip. Unfortunately, I cut it close to trip time and didn't even take time to read the guide. I spent some frustrating moments in the beginning efforts of using my red Nikon Coolpix camera.

The Coolpix line is updated regularly. I love that the value stays consistent. This is a great starter option!

I consider this to be an excellent camera model for the tween or teen. If you select a tech device for a child who is prone to calamities, however, take the option of extended warranty protection seriously. With the pricing of a digital camera like the Coolpix version here, a protection plan shouldn't be very pricey. If something happens to the device, however, a quick and easy replacement is worth that extra investment.

SanDisk 32GB Class 4 SDHC Memory Card, Frustration-Free Packaging- SDSDB-032G-AFFP (Label May Change)
SanDisk 32GB Class 4 SDHC Memory Card, Frustration-Free Packaging- SDSDB-032G-AFFP (Label May Change)

The camera doesn't come with an SD card, so be sure to invest in a good one with plenty of capacity.


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