How I Use U1 & U2

My Nikon Coolpix P6000 camera has two user-defined settings: U1 and U2. You can set the camera to your desired combination of settings and save them. Then when you select U1 or U2 on the camera’s main dial it will switch to those settings.

Nikon Coolpix P6000 Top

Nikon Coolpix P6000 Top

I experimented with the settings I would use most and came up with the following:

Setting U1 U2
Image Quality Fine NRW
Image Size 3:2 (4224×2816) 13M (fixed)
Picture Control Vivid Vivid
White Balance Auto Auto
ISO Sensitivity <= 200 <= 200
Metering Center-weighted Center-weighted
Continuous Single Single
Auto Bracketing Off Off
AF Area Mode Auto Auto
Autofocus mode Full time Full time
Flash exp. Comp. 0 0
Flash Control Auto Auto
Noise reduction Auto Auto
Distortion control Off Off
Wide-angle Converter Off Off
Active D-Lighting Normal Normal
Thank you Microsoft Excel 2007 for pasting this table intelligently!

U1 and U2 are the same except that U1 captures JPG only in 3:2 format whereas U2 uses the camera’s RAW format.

For the other program settings I set the camera on 8M (3264 x 2448) FINE and AUTO 200 (i.e. do not set the ISO about 200 ASA). This is a good compromise between file size and quality. I dislike the quality of the pictures above 200ASA.

U1 and U2 also save the zoom setting for the lens. I found this a bit disconcerting and wish is could turn it off. I saved the settings with the zoom at the middle of the lens’s range.

Sometimes I look at a potential picture at 8M and decide I’d like a larger picture or the white balance is difficult so I’d better shoot RAW. So I select U1 or U2, but the lens moves and upsets my composition. I think that is silly. Just because you can do something, Nikon, does not mean that you should.

Vivid picture control gives pretty nice saturated pictures in Bangkok’s sometimes grey environment. I don’t understand D-Lighting; I should do some tests. I think the concept is also used on Nikon’s SLRs.

The Distortion Control setting is another mystery to me. Maybe it addresses the distortion issue I noted in this post.

Before you say RTFM, the manual does not give good explanations of these features.

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One Response to “How I Use U1 & U2”

  1. GB-in-TH Says:

    There’s an error above. Active D-Lighting is not available for RAW (NRW) files, so that should be set to “no”.

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