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Nikon CoolPix 4800 Review

November 2004 | By Simon Joinson


Review based on a production Nikon Coolpix 4800 (Firmware version 1.1)

Announced in September 2004, the Coolpix 4800 represents the latest in a long line of Nikon compact cameras that stretches all the way back to the late 1990's, and is Nikon's first budget 'super zoom' camera. Although it sits in the same range as the diminutive Coolpix 5200 and 4200 and has similar styling, the Coolpix 4800 is a considerably larger and more powerful camera - though still a lot smaller than most other super zoom cameras. Features of note include an 8.3x (36-300mm equiv.) ED zoom lens, electronic viewfinder (EVF), 11 scene modes, fast startup and operation and 640x480 pixel (VGA) movies at 15fps. Here's a quick rundown of the 4800's main selling points:

  • 4.0 million effective pixels
  • 8.3x (36-300mm equiv.) Zoom-Nikkor ED glass zoom lens
  • Best Shot Selector - takes a series of shots and chooses the sharpest for you
  • AE (auto exposure) Best Shot Selector
  • 11 scene modes
  • 640x480 pixel, 15fps movie mode
  • 13.5MB of internal memory

Key specifications

Street price • US: $480
• UK: £280
Body Material Aluminum
Sensor

• 1/2.5 " Type CCD
• 4.2 million pixels total
• 4 million effective pixels

Image sizes • 2288 x 1712
• 1600 x 1200
• 1024 x 768
• 640 x 480
Movie clips

• 640 x 480 (15 fps)
• 320 x 240 (15 fps)
• With sound
• QuickTime (.mov) format
• Duration limited only by card size (streaming)

Lens

• 36 - 300mm equiv. (8.3x optical zoom) ED Nikkor
• F2.7 - 4.4
• 11 elements in 9 groups

Focus • Contrast-detect through-the-lens (TTL) AF
• AF illuminator
• Five-area multi AF with automatic and manual selection
• 1cm closest focus (macro mode, wideangle)
Shooting mode

• Portrait
• Landscape
• Sports
• Night Portrait
• Party/Indoor
• Beach/Snow
• Sunset
• Dusk/Dawn
• Night landscape
• Close up
• Museum
• Fireworks show
• Copy
• Back light
• Panorama assist
• AE-Compensation -2.0 to +2.0 EV in 0.3 EV steps

Sensitivity • Auto
• ISO 50,100,200,400
White Balance • Auto
• 5 presets
• Manual
Image parameters • Contrast (3 levels + auto)
• Sharpening (3 levels + auto and off)
• Color options (standard, vivid, black & white, sepia, cyanotype)
Continuous 1.5 fps, up to 5 frames
Flash • Built-in
• Auto, Manual on/off, Red-eye reduction: on/off, Slow sync: on/off
• Range (Auto ISO):W: 0.4 – 4.3 m (1.3 –14 ft ); T: 0.6 – 2.6 m (2– 8.5 ft)
Storage • Approx 13.5MB of internal memory
• SD/MMC slot
Viewfinder • 0.44˝, 235,000-dot, polysilicon TFT color viewfinder
• Approx coverage 97%
LCD monitor • 1.8" TFT, 118,000 pixels
• approx 97% coverage
• -3 to +1 dioptre adjustment
Connectivity • USB 2.0 Full Speed
• A/V out
• DC-IN
Power • One rechargeable Nikon EN-EL1 lithium-ion battery (supplied with charger)
• One 2CR5 lithium battery (optional)
• EH-54 AC adapte r(optional)
Supplied accessories*

• Strap
• USB cable
• Audio
• Video cable
• Rechargeable Li-ion battery
• Battery charger
• PictureProject CD-ROM

Other features

Best Shot Selector
256-segment matrix metering linked to AF area
• Noise Reduction
• PictBridge compatible
• Built-in microphone and speaker

Weight (no batt) 255 g (9 oz)
Dimensions 106 x 66 x 54 mm (4.2 x 2.6 x 2.2 in)

* Supplied accessories may differ in each country or area


If you're new to digital photography you may wish to read the Digital Photography Glossary before diving into this article (it may help you understand some of the terms used).

Conclusion / Recommendation / Ratings are based on the opinion of the reviewer, you should read the ENTIRE review before coming to your own conclusions.

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DPReview calibrate their monitors using Color Vision OptiCal at the (fairly well accepted) PC normal gamma 2.2, this means that on our monitors we can make out the difference between all of the (computer generated) grayscale blocks below. We recommend to make the most of this review you should be able to see the difference (at least) between X,Y and Z and ideally A,B and C.

This article is Copyright 2004 and may NOT in part or in whole be reproduced in any electronic or printed medium without prior permission from the author.

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