Nikon have introduced the Nikon Coolpix AW100 as a rival to other cameras in the increasingly popular rugged and waterproof compact digital camera niche for outdoor adventurers. It has been given the AW prefix in its model number as an All Weather digital camera.It is waterproof to 33ft, can withstand drops on to a hard surface from 5ft and capable of operating in temperatures down to 14F. Nothing remarkable here as these are accepted standards for this type of camera, however the AW100 can withstand immersion to greater depths than many of its peers. If you are interested to know more, take a look at Nikon AW100 review. The problem with waterproof and rugged compact cameras is that to be tough they sacrifice picture quality whilst trying to keep the camera as compact as possible. Nikon suggest that the picture quality from the AW100 is better than most of the other cameras in this niche as it has a 16 mega pixel CMOS sensor built-in, combined with a maximum ISO3200 setting, which offers the ability to take better pictures, especially in lower light and fast conditions.The wide-angle lens offers 5x zoom and when you find an interesting insect the macro mode can focus at a distance of less than half an inch away for stunning close up shots. To keep your picture nice and sharp the camera has lens shift vibration reduction rather than the more common digital sensor shift vibration reduction. Combined with the high ISO3200 setting and the built-in Best Shot Selection function ensures your pictures will be as sharp as possible.Programmed with nineteen scene moods the camera has a mode for every occasion and will ensure that your pictures will be as great as possible. Choose from Dawn/Dusk, Pet Portrait, Fireworks, Night Portrait and Party/Indoor to name just a few. For your outdoor adventurers, the people the camera is really aimed at, there are Beach, Panorama, Sports and Underwater modes where the camera settings will at their optimum to capture those once only moments.For those movies of you rafting down a river or watching your friends speeding past on their mountain bikes the Nikon AW100 produces HD 1080i video which you can plug straight into a HDTV to watch and enjoy. The playback can be speeded up to search for those special moments and then be slowed down to enjoy them in detail. Most of the other rugged cameras produce only 720p HD video although two other higher specification rugged cameras have HD 1080i video as well.The Nikon Coolpix AW100 comes with built-in ecompass and also GPS with an internal map display on which you can record your position when the photos were taken. After you have uploaded the photos to your computer you can retrace your route using Nikon's ViewNX2 software or share them on Nikon's Mypicturetown.com website or Google Earth. The AW100 will track your movements and location even when the camera is not in use so that your whole adventure and route can be viewed.With the built-in Action Control you can operate the camera with one hand, even when wearing a thick glove or under water. Different hand movements can be pre-defined for different camera actions and the control can be activated via a dedicated button on the side of the camera. Presently available in three colors in the US, orange, black and blue.For those people who lead an active outdoors lifestyle, whether you are sailing, skiing, rock climbing, mountain biking, hiking or a whole host of similar pursuits the Nikon Coolpix AW100 has been designed to meet your needs, both in its ability to resist harsh environments and to take good quality photos. For more info, visit Nikon AW100 review.