Nikon Coolpix S9700 travel zoom packs in 30x lens

Nikon has unveiled the Coolpix S9700, a 30x optical zoom compact camera that updates the S9500 model.

The S9700 is a model that offers more, sometimes by offering less: it appears Nikon has called time on the super-high resolution sensor of the S9500, opting instead for a back-illuminated 16MP sensor in the S9700. Here it's a case of fewer "pixels" on that small surface for the sake of supposed better image quality.

But the thing that will really sell the S9700 is that considerable zoom lens. Offering a 25-750mm equivalent, it can cater for wide-angle group shots and, via a tug on the zoom toggle around the shutter, will extend to capture those far-away subjects as if they fill the frame.

There's also 5-axis hybrid vibration reduction - otherwise known as image stabilisation - to steady shots when conditions require, GPS (Global Positioning Satellite) for geotagging images, alongside built-in Wi-Fi for on-the-go sharing.

Just like other "travel zoom" models, such as the Panasonic Lumix TZ60, the Coolpix S9700 comes fully featured with full manual and auto controls to cater for any level. So if you're after a pocketable point-and-shoot that offers that little bit more and can cater for a wide range of shooting angles this looks like Nikon's best bash at this category yet.

In addition a Coolpix S9600 model continues the earlier S9500's 22x optical zoom, but is paired with the newer 16MP sensor from the S9700.

The Nikon Coolpix S9700 will be priced at £330, while the S9600 will carry a smaller £250 price tag. Both models will be available in black, red and white and are due on sale from the end of February.