P300: First Impressions

Started Jul 31, 2011 | Discussions thread
snapshot09 Veteran Member • Posts: 4,512
Re: P300: First Impressions

Great feedback! Glad you are enjoying the P300. It has been getting rave reviews on Amazon.com.

tr4driver wrote:

Greetings,

I bought a Nikon Coolpix P300 a couple of days ago to replace a Cannon SD1000 that recently quit working. My primary camera is a Nikon D7000, but I like to have a smaller compact to carry with me in situations where I don't want the lug a big bag around. I won't go through all the detailed specs on the camera since you can find those in dpreview's detailed review. I just wanted to share my initial impressions from a real-world user's perspective.

1. Construction. This thing seems reasonably well built, but does not have the same tank-like feel of the SD1000. I never had any worries about slipping the SD1000 into my back pocket and leaving it there (even if I sat down on it). While the P300 will fit in my pocket, I doubt it would fair as well if actually sat on.

2. Controls / Menus. The control layout is fine and very usable. I like the dual wheel control. The menus are easy to navigate. I wish there was a way to program the wheel not being used in aperture to shutter priority mode to control the ISO.

3. Image Quality. The image quality is good. Not large sensor DSLR great, but good. I was concerned after reading a lot of reviews that the images might appear over-sharpened, but this is really not the case (or maybe I just prefer my images a little over-sharpened). I haven't had a chance to really put the camera through its paces, but thus far, I'm pleased with the image quality.

4. Video. I didn't buy the camera for video, but it is always nice to have that capability. The P300 has a couple of interesting modes that I haven't had the chance to play around with yet. I have shot some sample normal 1080 video, and it seems to work well enough for a P&S camera. Some reviewers have commented that the AF doesn't work well in video mode, but I found it worded perfectly well using single point AF (which it what I use 90% of thI haven't Ihaven't tried it with other modes.

5. Other Features. The camera has several other interesting scenes/features that I probably won't use on a regular basis and haven't tried out yet such as the Night Landscape mode, HDR, and Panorama.

6. Overall Impression. I like it a lot. I like the sort of retro boxy look (I hate the current rounded look of the Cannon P&S cameras). I seriously considered the Cannon S95 over this camera, but in the end went with the P300 due to the wider (and faster lens), better LCD, looks, and cheaper price. I know many feel the 1/2.3 sensor can't compete with the 1/1.7, but I honestly can't tell that much difference in the examples I've seen posted, and to be honest, they both fall well short of my D7000.

If you want a small convienent P&S camera with some manual control and decent low light performance, I don't think you'll go wrong with this camera.

Kurt

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