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Taking pictures

The Coolpix 800 reacts quickly, shoots as you'd hope and is totally predictable. It feels quicker than the 700. It's an enjoyable and easy to use digicam which produces better than expected results, despite the plastic case it feels solid and functional and complements the rest of the Coolpix line nicely.

Timings & File Sizes

Timing Notes: All times calculated as an average of three operations. Unless otherwise stated all timings were made on a 1600 x 1200 JPEG image @ NORMAL compression.

File Size Notes: All file sizes as an average of three files. As is the case with JPEG it's difficult to predict the size of an image because it will vary wildly depending on the content of the image (especially the amount of detail captured). For example, take a photograph of a fairly empty wall and you'll get a small JPEG, take a photograph of a bush with a lot of detail and you'll get a larger image. File sizes here are closer to the later, the larger size of file you should expect.

The estimated number of images per 8 MB Compact Flash card is given as a guide to beginners (as an 8 MB Compact Flash card is supplied with the camera).

Action Time taken
OFF to REC (A-REC or M-REC) 3.5 (Lens extension)
OFF to PLAY 2.5 (rough image appears and "busy" is displayed)
REC to OFF 2.6 (Lens retraction)
REC to PLAY 1.9 (rough image appears and "busy" is displayed)
PLAY to REC 3.0  
PLAY: Image to Image 1.0
First timing is "rough display"
Second is detailed display
PLAY: Image to Image 1.0
First timing is "rough display"
Second is detailed display
PLAY: INDEX thumbnail view 1.5  
PLAY: Zoom-in 1.0  
Shutter Release LAG 0.1 Fast.
Timings shown below are the time taken for the camera to "flush" the image out to the CF card. You can force the camera out of review mode or tap the shutter release to take another shot before the time below has completed (except for TIFF images).
Action Time taken
File size Compression ratio Images on an
8 MB CF card
1600 x 1200 TIFF (Hi) 36.0 5,633 KB 1:1 1
1600 x 1200 FINE 6.5 ~ 800 KB 1:4 10
1600 x 1200 NORMAL 4.2 ~ 400 KB 1:8 20
1600 x 1200 BASIC 3.2 ~ 200 KB 1:16 40
640 x 480 FINE 2.7 ~ 120 KB 1:4 69
640 x 480 NORMAL 2.7 ~ 60 KB 1:8 130
640 x 480 BASIC 2.7 ~ 40 KB 1:16 200

Battery life

Battery life is a very variable thing, and as most digicam users will know using ordinary alkaline batteries such as the 4 AA's supplied with a digicam won't last you long enough to fill up your 8MB CF card. This is of course true of the 800, using a set of GP 1300mAh NiMH rechargeable I managed to get about 100+ shots with the LCD on.

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