The Control Panel

The control panel is located on the top panel of the camera. It is actually a small LCD window:

This control panel contains essentially the same information when the camera is in the A-REC mode and the M-REC mode. However, the PLAY mode only shows the battery icon. In what follows, only the most frequently used/seen items are discussed. Other items will be discussed elsewhere along with their corresponding features.

The Battery Icon

The first and perhaps the most important icon shown on the control panel is the battery icon:

When this icon shows halfway full, battery power is getting weaker and changing battery will be necessary very soon. When this icon shows an empty battery and is blinking, the battery is too weak to permit taking images. The camera will soon become inoperable, and it is the time for changing battery.

The Number in Bracket

This number indicates the maximum number of images you can take if you do not change the quality (or resolution) and size of the images. This number is determined by the resolution and size of each image you take and the size of the CompactFlash memory card being used. Please refer to Selecting Image Quality and Image Size for further details.

The Exposure Mode Indicator

This mode indicator can be P for the Program mode, A for the Aperture Priority mode, S for the Shutter Priority mode, or M for the Manual Exposure mode. By default, when you turn on the camera under the A-REC (resp., M-REC) mode, it is in the program mode (resp., the mode you used last time). The program mode could be the mode you will be using most frequently. Moreover, turning the command dial when the camera uses the program mode P in M-REC, instead of P the control panel shows P*, indicating that the camera is in the flexible program mode.

The Flash Mode Indicator

This shows the current flash mode. There are five flash settings discussed in The On-Camera Flash. By default, the flash mode is off, which means the on-camera flash will not fire automatically. To activate the on-camera flash, you need to slide the flash's lock-release lever to release the flash.

The Focusing Mode and Self-timer Indicator

This indicator shows the focus mode and self-timer. Please refer to Focusing for further details.

Exposure Compensation

It is possible to dial in an exposure compensation value for increasing or decreasing exposure. If this capability is used, the control panel will show a +/- symbol as shown below. Please refer to Exposure Compensation for further details.

The Exposure Metering Indicator

Nikon's Coolpix 995 supports three exposure metering methods: 256-element matrix, spot, center-weighted, and spot AF area. The default is the 256-element matrix method. Please refer to Exposure Metering Methods for further details.

The Aperture or Shutter Speed Indicator

This indicator is actually a number located in the upper-right corner of the control panel. It displays the aperture or shutter speed being used, depending on the exposure mode. An aperture value is shown like F x.y, while shutter speed is shown with an integer.

The Image Quality and Size Indicator

This indicator shows the image quality (in blue frame) and size being used (in red frame). Please refer to Selecting Image Quality and Image Size for further details.

The Sensitivity Indicator

This indicator shows that the sensitivity other than the default one is being used. Please refer to Sensitivity for further details.