Ok, I give up on the Coolpix 3700 audio lag problem. I can't get rid of it with ANY of these SD cards:
- Sandisk standard (16MB and 256MB)
- Sandisk Ultra II (9MB/s? write, 256MB)
- Panasonic Super High Speed (10MB/s write, 256MB)
My findings are (evaluated on camera and PC downloads):
- ALL cards exhibit a constant audio lag at 640/30fps.
- ALL cards exhibit a constant audio lag at 320/15fps.
- The lag seems to be about the same for ALL cards/modes.
- The lag is noticeable, for me unacceptable.
- The lag has been variously quantified by others as about 9 frames and 266 milliseconds.
- The lag occurs with even short 3 second clips.
- The lag occurs without using pause during recording.
- The lag occurs with version 1.2 firmware.
I suspect the whole 10MB/s card thing is a furphy. The 3700 manual mentions it not in relation to audio lag, rather drop out (buffer overrun?), page 43:
"To prevent TV movie 640* from ending unexpectedly, use card rated for 10MB/s or more".
Incidently, I recorded an entire 256MB standard Sandisk card at "TV movie 640*" without drop out.
Disappointingly, I have received no useful information or support from Nikon's Australian agent or camera retailers when enquiring about this problem.
All the same, I recently had a great family night out at an amusement park and the 3700 was a dream for snapping and shooting the lights and fun, tucked conveniently in a belt pouch.
Whether or not it's a deal breaker depends - you can resync in an editor, or just live with it. Pity too, it's a decent camera despite this; a sweet little unit. For me the TV video mode is a major selling point and justification for it being one of the most expensive 3 megapixel/3x optical auto-only ultracompacts on the market.