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Nikon Coolpix 800 Review

November 1999 | By Phil Askey

Nikon Coolpix 800 (click for larger image)

Rumors abound a couple of months ago, the name CP800 bounced around the newsgroups and discussion forums but nobody had any details about Nikons rumored new digital camera. On 27th September Nikon did their normal worldwide simultaneous announcement, the new Coolpix 800.

So, was it enough to be excited about? Well, yes really. The Coolpix 800 is essentially an updated Coolpix 700 (similar package) with a 2x zoom lens. It competes directly with the Canon S10 with almost identical specifications (2.1 megapixel, 2x zoom, Compact Flash).

So how does the Coolpix 800 measure up against the rest of the Coolpix family?

Compared to the Coolpix 700 (which it replaces)
Adds: 2x zoom lens, Automatic ISO adjustment, new ultra burst mode, more manual focus positions (45).
Loses: More expensive (slightly), deeper dimensions.

Compared to the Coolpix 950
Adds: Automatic ISO adjustment, new ultra burst mode, more manual focus positions (45).
Loses: Split swivel lens, only 2x zoom compared to 3x on the 950, manual controls (aperture priority, shutter priority), scrolling whilst zoomed in playback mode, amazing macro ability.

Otherwise they share the same CCD and image processing algorithms, similar menu systems and many other components.

So how does the 800 fit in? Well, it's a bit of a bargain really, all the image quality of the 950, less a little zoom and some features (which you may not find yourself using anyway), add automatic ISO adjustment and the new burst mode and you have a very attractive package.

If you're new to digital photography you may want to read the Digital Photography Glossary before diving into this review (it may help you understand some of the terms I use).

Photographs of the camera were taken with Nikon Coolpix 950, images which can be viewed at a larger size have a small magnifying glass icon in the bottom right corner of the image, clicking on the image will display a larger (normally 800 x 600 or smaller if cropped) image in a new window.

To navigate the review simply use the next / previous page buttons, to jump to a particular section either pick the section from the drop down or select it from the navigation bar at the top.

This review is copyright 1999 Phil Askey and the review in part or in whole may NOT be reproduced in any electronic or printed medium without prior permission from the author: Phil Askey. For information on reproducing any part of this review (or any images) please contact: Phil Askey.

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