Nokia N71 has a very good 2 megapixel camera. The camera application is very similar to the one in Nokia N80, just adjusted for portrait shooting and in many aspects the N71 camera is a 2 megapixel version of the N80 camera. In fact, it is a lot more convenient to use the Nokia N71 camera for sightseeing for example. You will have to start the camera application only once. When you are not shooting, you can just close the clamshell. If you need it again, you can just open the clamshell and the camera is ready to take the picture immediately. We didn't had Nokia N80 along with N71 to compare the performance, but in all camera operations, N71 seemed faster - this is easily explainable - Nokia N71 has to work with smaller images (2 MP vs. 3 MP) and also has lower resolution display, less pixels to draw. However, Nokia N71 lacks the macro mode we can find on N80.
There are a lot of shooting modes like Portrait, Landscape, Sport, Text, which is very convenient. The exposure compensation and the white balance can be adjusted without pressing too many buttons. Of course, you can select to store your photos in lower resolution or with higher compression. A LED flash should help you in shooting close objects in the dark.
The quality of the Nokia N71 photos is a pleasant surprise - low noise (look at the sky in the samples), true colors and high dynamic range for a phone (no over exposure). We notice a little underexposure in the N71 photos, but this is definitely a better approach than blowing the highlights, it's really easy to adjust the exposure later on the PC. If you like your photos brighter in the first place, you can always use the exposure compensation.
For everything except macro shots Nokia N71 can rival the top rated 2 megapixel cameras of Sony Ericsson K750 and friends. You can see how K750 performs at the same scenes in our 3 megapixel shootout, K750 was a honorable referee there.
At highest setting Nokia N71 can shoot video in MP4 format and CIF resolution (352 x 288 pixels). The quality of the video is on par with N80 and it is a lot better than what we usually get in the phones. Capturing in 3GP format is also possible. The digital zoom can be used during shooting, the exposure and the white balance can be adjusted.
You can look at your photos with the help of the Gallery application. It uses the same rotating view as in Nokia N80, but in portrait mode. The thumbnails of the pictures are read ahead and cached. Once read, all operations within the Gallery are very fast.
Nokia N71 has Bluetooth, Infrared and USB connectivity options and they work so easily that you can connect to almost anything that supports these standards. There are applications to install a Bluetooth keyboard and use it with the phone and there is another application for setting a printer to print files from N71.
Synchronization with PC is seamless with the Nokia PC Suite. There is also a Nokia Xpress Transfer application for fast transfer of files from your phone to your PC or backwards.