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November 30, 2017

Look ma, no hands! Nikon SnapBridge 2.0 adds hands-free exposure adjustments

by John_A

Shooting a Nikon remotely is about to get even simpler — on Wednesday, November 29, the imaging giant launched Nikon SnapBridge 2.0. The updated smartphone app gives photographers access to more adjustments while using the app to shoot remotely, including the ability to adjust the full range of manual exposure settings without touching the camera. The free app update works with Nikon’s Bluetooth and Wi-Fi-enabled cameras.

While the SnapBridge app has always allowed photographers to remotely trigger the shot, adjusting the exposure settings still had to be done using the camera’s physical controls. With the update, photographers can now switch between programmed auto, shutter priority, aperture priority and full manual, as well as having access to shutter speed, aperture value, exposure compensation, ISO sensitivity and white balance. The access to exposure settings does vary based on camera model, Nikon says, so not every users will have access to the expanded options.

Users with an older camera model not compatible with the expanded controls will likely still want to make that free download however — the update also helps conserve battery power. A new power-saving mode allows the photographer to make adjustments so the smartphone’s battery doesn’t drain so quickly. Another option allows users to prioritize location accuracy or preserve battery with a more general geotag.

Nikon also took all the user feedback from the 1.0 app and redesigned the user interface. The screen and menu organization has been updated — for example, the screen will now display a status bar for several tasks, such as switching from a Bluetooth to a Wi-Fi connection. More user instructions are also integrated into more locations. For photographers with several Nikons, the app update also allows users to register up to five Nikon cameras inside the app.

The updated SnapBridge still includes the option for users to automatically back-up smaller two-megapixel versions of their files to the Nikon Image Space, a form of cloud storage. A new dedicated tab inside that re-designed interface makes the tool easier to access, while users can now automatically upload images shot with the smartphone as a remote. The automatic transfers inside Nikon SnapBridge launched in 2016 as Nikon began integrating Bluetooth into more camera bodies. The connectivity first launched with the D500, but the option has since launched on entry-level DSLRs as well, including the D5600.

Nikon says it will continue enhancing the SnapBridge app to enhance usability and add new functions. SnapBridge 2.0 is rolling out now to both iOS and Android devices.

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