The Nikon COOLPIX L840 is supposed to be dead. Smartphone cameras supposedly killed the Nikon L840 and other cameras like it in 2017. The sales figures for consumer cameras do seem to indicate that people are opting to buy smartphones rather than deal with a standalone camera.

This development is not surprising. You carry around your smartphone at all times. So much so that you can replace your house keys with a smartphone app and a smart lock. If you needed a camera, you could just use the one on your phone. Still, is the Nikon L840 a good buy?

Nikon COOLPIX L840 Digital Camera with 38x Optical Zoom and Built-In...

4.1 of 5 stars

The Nikon COOLPIX L840 boasts of a 38x optical zoom lens, small and compact design, Wi-Fi and NFC connectivity, and a host of other features that you will love.

Design of the Nikon L840

The Nikon COOLPIX L840 measures 4.5 by 3.1 by 3.8 inches and weighs only 1.2 pounds. As such, the Nikon L840 is both lightweight and compact. There should be no problems holding the camera for hours while you are shooting. The only thing that can potentially make the Nikon L840 challenging to handle is the long zoom lens up front.

The good news is that Nikon included a sturdy grip to help you hold the COOLPIX L840 more steadily. There are also several controls included here, such as the zoom button that snaps back into place. Lastly, the Nikon COOLPIX L840 has three color options: black, red, and plum.

Features and specifications

The Nikon L840 comes with a 1/2.3-inch complementary metal-oxide semiconductor sensor. The CMOS sensor delivers resolutions of up to 16 megapixels for your photos. You also get high definition videos at 1080 pixels with progressive scanning.

The sensor works with a NIKKOR 4-152mm f/3-6.5 lens. The lens provides you with 38x optical zoom, extra-low dispersion, and vibration reduction. In short, the Nikon L840 can help stabilize your images by compensating for camera shake, while also taking care of color fringing when you are zooming in too much.

LCD monitor

The Nikon COOLPIX L840 sports a 3-inch LCD that has 921,000 dots. The screen helps you compose your shot without having to squint into a small viewfinder. It is also an excellent way to review your videos and photos without connecting the camera to a TV or computer monitor.

One thing that makes this LCD unique is that it is tilted to make it easier for you to shoot high- or low-angle photos. If this LCD is not enough for you, you can also plug the Nikon L840 into your HDTV.

HD videos

The Nikon L840 delivers full high definition resolutions for your videos with frame rates at 30 frames per second. Audio quality is superb because of the stereo sound provided by the embedded microphone.

NFC and Wi-Fi connectivity

The Nikon L840 connects to your Wi-Fi network, allowing you to share your photos faster. It will also let you take control of your camera using your smartphone or tablet. Additionally, the camera has an embedded near-field communications chip that makes it easier for you to connect the camera to your Wi-Fi network.

Using Nikon's SnapBridge technology, you only have to tap your phone and camera together to pair these two devices.

Other features

What other features should you expect from the Nikon L840? First, there is the scene auto selector that automatically uses the best settings depending on the shooting condition. You can also use the Nikon L840 to snap fast-paced photos with its 7.4 frames per minute continuous shooting feature.

The Nikon L840 runs on four AA batteries. It also saves your videos and images on SD, SDXC, and SDHC cards.

Ratings and reviews

With around 800 customer reviews, the Nikon COOLPIX L840 has an average rating of 4.1 out of 5 stars on Amazon. Satisfied customers love the Nikon L840 because it works as advertised, with a very capable zoom and a fast Wi-Fi connection that can quickly transfer photos to your smartphone. There are also praises for the camera's performance in low light conditions, as well as the HD quality of your videos and images. Others say that this is a recommended camera for consumers and those who are not professional photographers.

However, there are negative reviews that talk about the camera breaking down after only a short time. Others note that the camera is very slow to focus and equally snail-paced when taking photos. There are also complaints about how the manufacturer executed several of the features poorly.

Pricing for the Nikon L840

The Japanese company no longer manufactures the Nikon L840. However, you can still buy this on Amazon for anywhere from $$$ to $$$.

How We Reviewed

To write this review of the Nikon COOLPIX L840, we checked the product's information page and a list of technical specifications. We also looked at the Nikon L840's sales pages on different online retailer sites such as B&H Video and Photo, and Amazon. Further, we also considered the opinions of different photography and technology sites such as Digital Photography Review.

We did the same for the Nikon L840’s competitors featured here.

How the Nikon L840 Compares to Competitors

The Nikon L840 is one of the low-cost cameras marketed to consumers. It has some notable competitors in the Panasonic LUMIX FZ80, the Canon Powershot SX60, and the Sony DSC-RX100 IV. How does it compare?

Panasonic Lumix FZ80 4K Digital Camera, 18.1 Megapixel Video Camera,...

4.4 of 5 stars

The Panasonic LUMIX FZ80 is a point-and-shoot camera that delivers 4K videos. It uses an 18.1-megapixel sensor and comes with a 3-inch touchscreen LCD. The camera also uses the LUMIX DC Vario lens that gives you 60x zoom and 11.81 inches of focus range.

The LUMIX FZ80 promises excellent shots even in dark environments. You can also use the Post Focus feature that allows you to set focus points after taking the picture. This camera measures 5.1 by 3.7 by 4.7 inches, making it a little bit bigger than the Nikon L840. However, it does have an ergonomic grip that makes it easier to handle.

The Panasonic LUMIX FZ80 gets a rating of 4.4 out of 5 stars on Amazon. Verified buyers like using the LUMIX FZ80 when they travel, allowing them to leave the bulky DSLRs at home. They also love the zoom function of the camera, as well as the 4K resolution.

There are negative reviews, however, that talk about various limitations of the LUMIX FZ80. These include the non-standard USB cable it uses, the lack of sharpness of its images, and the fact that dust got into the camera's sensor. Others point out that the camera's labels fade or the sticker trim peels off after just a few uses.

Pricing for the Panasonic LUMIX FZ80 ranges from $$$ to $$$. You can buy it directly from Panasonic. You can also buy it from other online retailers such as Amazon or B&H Video and Photo.

Comparing the Panasonic LUMIX FZ80 with the L840

The Panasonic LUMIX FZ80 wins with its lower price range and better sensor resolutions. The FZ80 has 12 percent more pixels than the Nikon L840. The focal length of the LUMIX camera also gives more comprehensive coverage and has a longer reach. Additionally, the LUMIX delivers 4K videos when the Nikon L840 can only give you full HD.

However, the Nikon L840 delivers ISO 6400, compared to only ISO 3200 for the LUMIX. It also has a faster maximum shutter speed at 1/4000s.

Canon Powershot SX60 16.1MP Digital Camera 65x Optical Zoom Lens...

4.4 of 5 stars

Like the Nikon L840, the Canon Powershot SX60 is a long zoom camera. It has a 16.1-megapixel CMOS sensor that measures 1/2.3 inches. The sensor works with Canon's DIGIC 6 image processor to deliver 1080p HD videos and similarly outstanding photographs.

The Canon Powershot SX60's lens delivers 65x optical zoom with 4x digital zoom. It uses the optical image stabilizer to help you avoid shaky videos. The Powershot SX60 also comes with a three-inch tilt LCD that you can use to compose your shots faster.

Ratings for the Canon Powershot SX60 on Amazon show that users generally love this camera, averaging at 4.4 out of 5 stars. You will rave about the zoom range it offers, as well as how easy it is to use. More importantly, you will like the photo and video quality of this camera.

However, you might not like how the Powershot SX60 is a bit slow when locking the focus, especially when it is fully zoomed in. Others note that photos taken with this camera in low light are anything but great. You can buy it from the Canon store and other online retailers for anywhere from $$$ to $$$.

Comparing the Canon Powershot SX60 with the Nikon L840

The Nikon L840 has a faster max shutter speed at 1/4000s compared to the Powershot SX60's 1/2000s. It also has a wider maximum aperture and a more affordable price. However, you should still consider the Canon Powershot SX60 if you prefer a camera with an external flash shoe, a viewfinder, and RAW support. The Canon camera also has a microphone port, broader and longer focal length, and a more flexible 65x optical zoom, compared to only 38x with the Nikon camera.

Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-RX100 IV Digital Camera + Sony LCJRXF/B Premium...

4.1 of 5 stars

The Sony DSC-RX100 IV has a 20.1-megapixel Exmore RS sensor. The back-illuminated CMOS sensor gives you videos with up to 4K resolutions at 3,840 by 2,160 pixels. This camera uses the BIONZ X image processors, ensuring fast and responsive operations, as well as direct pixel readout that guarantees no pixel binning.

The Sony DSC-RX100 IV comes with a 3-inch LCD that has 1.2 million dots. It also features an OLED electronic viewfinder that has 2.4 million pixels and measures 0.4 inches diagonally.

Amazon customers rate this camera with 4.1 out of 5 stars. Satisfied users love how the camera works excellently in low light conditions, as well as the great image and video quality. Others like its small size, making it easy to bring around no matter where you go.

There are some complaints, however, that talk about how the autofocus fails in burst mode. The autofocus also has problems when you are tracking objects. Also, some people caution potential buyers that the camera breaks down just after the warranty ends so that durability might be a problem for the Sony DSC-RX100 IV.

Pricing for the Sony DSC-RX100 IV ranges from $$$ to $$$. You can buy it from online retailer sites such as Amazon, Abe's of Maine, and 42nd Street Photo.

Comparing the Sony DSC-RX100 IV with the Nikon L840

The Sony DSC-RX100 IV has a better maximum resolution at 20 megapixels than the 16 megapixels offered by Nikon L840. It also has a viewfinder, can shoot in raw, and has manual exposure settings: all of which are missing from the Nikon L840. The Sony camera also has a higher maximum ISO, faster maximum aperture, and better video quality than the Nikon L840.

However, the Nikon L840 is cheaper than the Sony DSC-RX100 IV, and it delivers a faster maximum shutter speed, wider and longer focal length, and better optical zoom than the Sony camera.

Pros and Cons of the Nikon L840


  • Gets a lot of things right
  • Can be use it as a regular point and shoot camera because of its ease of use
  • Has a good enough image and video quality that will give you sharp and clear photos and high definition videos
  • Focusing and exposure are also fast


  • There is no external flash shoe
  • The LCD is not a touchscreen
  • There is no viewfinder
  • It does not even shoot in RAW

The Nikon COOLPIX L840 gets a lot of things right. You can use it as a regular point and shoot camera because of its ease of use. It has a good enough image and video quality that will give you sharp and clear photos and high definition videos. Focusing and exposure are also fast.

The camera's Wi-Fi and NFC connectivity makes it easier for you to share your photos and enables you to control the camera with your smartphone. The continuous shooting gives you seven frames per second. You will also like the 38x zoom and the long battery life for this camera.

What can be better

The Nikon COOLPIX L840 will require you to buy AA batteries for the rest of your life with this camera. It might have been better if Nikon used a rechargeable lithium-ion battery to go with the L840. At the very least, you would need to spend more for the rechargeable batteries you would use with the L840.

There are also some things that are missing from the COOLPIX L840. There is no external flash shoe, the LCD is not a touchscreen, and there is no viewfinder. If you want to be creative with your shots, you will be limited because this camera does not offer manual exposure and focusing settings. It does not even shoot in RAW.

The COOLPIX L840 is also not built to withstand the elements because it does not have environmental sealing that will keep the dust out of its sensors. It is also not water resistant. Additionally, if you want a camera that can shoot 4K videos, then you should look elsewhere.

The Final Word on the Nikon COOLPIX L840

On its own, the Nikon COOLPIX L840 is a good camera with a reasonable price tag. It delivers full HD videos and high-resolution images. It is also very portable with a longer lasting battery than any of its competitors.

However, it is difficult to recommend the Nikon L840 because there are more affordable cameras out there that have better specifications. For instance, the Panasonic LUMIX FZ80 is cheaper than the Nikon COOLPIX L840 but has better sensor resolutions and 4K video capabilities. Nevertheless, people who want a point and shoot camera that delivers high definition videos and images and no-fuss shooting will probably find this camera perfect for their needs. That is if you do not like taking pictures with your smartphone camera.

Where To Buy
The Nikon COOLPIX L840

Nikon COOLPIX L840 Digital Camera with 38x Optical Zoom and Built-In...

Long zoom, a fast-handling design, plus built-in Wi-Fi and NFC, all come together in the Nikon Coolpix L840 Wi-Fi Digital Camera to help you take your photos and videos to the next level.

Panasonic LUMIX FZ80

Panasonic Lumix FZ80 4K Digital Camera, 18.1 Megapixel Video Camera,...

The perfect 4K technology enabled point and shoot camera for travelers, featuring a super long 20-1200mm (60X) lens. The LUMIX DC VARIO lens features a super bright F2.8-5.9 aperture range that is optically stabilized with Panasonic’s Power O.I.S. technology. 

Canon Powershot SX60

Canon Powershot SX60 16.1MP Digital Camera 65x Optical Zoom Lens...

Built-in Wi-Fi connectivity with NFC allows wireless transferring of images and video.

Twice As Fast As Ordinary SDHC Cards, Allowing You To Take Pictures And Transfer Files Quickly

Sony DSC-RX100 IV

Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-RX100 IV Digital Camera + Sony LCJRXF/B Premium...

World's first1 20.1 MP 1" Exmor RS stacked back illuminated CMOS, High resolution 4K movie recording with direct pixel readout and no pixel binning, Super slow-motion movie3 HFR (High frame rate) up to 960 fps (40x)

Do you have a Nikon L840? How is it?

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