Nikon Coolpix 8700 Review
Conclusion - Pros
- Eight times optical zoom, nearly 300 mm telephoto reach
- Excellent automatic white balance, best of group
- Excellent macro performance, best of group
- Good image quality, resolution not as high as expected
- Smallest and lightest eight megapixel prosumer
- Good ergonomics, sticky rubber on hand grip
- Time-lapse feature
- Wide range of accessories available
- Programmable FUNC button and initial menu
- Some unique features (Exposure BSS etc.)
- Excellent Nikon Matrix metering
- Framing assist lines option on live view
- Tilt & Twist LCD monitor
- High resolution electronic viewfinder
Conclusion - Cons
- Slower than expected startup time
- Limited latitude of image parameter adjustment
- AF assist lamp requires flash to be up
- Initially confusing 'User setting' concept
- Lower than advertised continuous shooting speed
- Battery life limited by low capacity Lithium-Ion battery
- Loses out by not having 28 mm wide angle zoom
- Lens being stretched past its resolution capabilities?
- Some vignetting / lens shading
- No record review histogram
- Visible noise from ISO 100 upwards
- Zoom lever not proportional
- Relatively slow lens (F2.8 - F4.2)
At first the Coolpix 8700 looks like a simple upgrade for Nikon, take the Coolpix 5700 body, the same lens and controls and drop in an eight megapixel CCD. However it's clear that the 8700 has changed quite a bit under the skin, the camera starts more quickly (although is still not fast in that respect), feels more responsive and has slightly faster shot to shot times. From a design point of view it has a fairly standard 'SLR-like' prosumer digital camera look, nothing radical but not particularly inspired either.
On the whole image quality was good, Nikon's matrix metering ensuring that almost every shot is perfectly exposed helps a lot. Tonal balance was good and color response was neutral while still appealing, resolution performance was less than we had hoped although the 8700 did well in our side-by-side studio comparison shot. White balance was a revelation, the 8700 delivering the best automatic white balance results of all the eight megapixel digital cameras we tested in this group.
Unfortunately the Coolpix 8700, like a couple of other eight megapixel prosumer digital cameras just feels like another 'me too' product. It certainly delivers good image quality and has the required range of features but also doesn't break the mold and doesn't stand out in any particular way. It may also be less attractive to some buyers because of its 35 mm wide angle (compared to the 28 mm wide angle offered by the rest) and relatively slow F4.2 telephoto. To existing Nikon owners the Coolpix 8700 may well be the best choice, to others it should at least be near the top of their 'may buy' list.
|Detail||Rating (out of 10)|
|Lens / CCD combination||8|
|Ease of use||8|
|Value for money||7.5|
('Recommended' is our second highest rating, a camera has to be good to get this far!)
Digital SLR footnote: If you're considering an eight megapixel prosumer digital camera you should also not rule out a sub-$1000 digital SLR while initially more expensive (certainly if you want to achieve the 28 - 200 mm zoom range) these cameras offer higher quality image processing, cleaner images (virtually noise free up to ISO 1600), faster performance, more flexibility and for all intents and purposes (even large prints) as much resolution. On the downside they're not an 'all in one' solution and they're likely to be larger and need you to buy and carry at least a second lens. By sub-$1000 (at the time of publication of this review) we're talking about the Nikon D70 and Canon EOS 300D (Digital Rebel).
So which one should I buy? A question I get asked several times a day, and I wouldn't like to say. In a new addition to my reviews (after the amount of feedback I normally get) I've added a link to a specific forum in which you can discuss the review or ask me specific questions which I've not answered in these pages.
|_MG_5100 by tim and jan|
from Welcome to the Saloon!
|The Grimm 11 year old by Ryan Gardner|
from Trick or Treat
|Heron with fish by APenza|
from A Big Year - birds
See some of the most iconic black-and-white photographs throughout history brought to life by a community of colorization enthusiasts and professional retouchers in the new book Retrographic.
Shopping for a photographer? Whether you are one yourself or not, chances are you could use some ideas. From stocking stuffers on up, we've got some photography gift suggestions for every budget.
We're counting down our top 10 most popular sample galleries of 2017. Drum roll please... the #6 spot belongs to none other than the Sigma 85mm F1.4 DH HSM Art.
Read the story behind this gorgeous wedding photo captured at Trolltunga in Norway by husband and wife duo Priscila Valentina Photography. The 14 hour hike in the rain that preceded this shot was TOTALLY worth it.
Go behind the scenes with filmmaker Nick Arcivos, who recently created a beautiful cinematic short film in Paris using only the iPhone X, a couple of gimbals, and a few lights. The results are very impressive.
A Bay Area startup offering a pay-by-the-photo camera service cleverly addresses the pain points photographers experience when they pick up their first DSLR. But can it survive the smartphone?
It's been a big year for software innovations, dual cameras and huge displays. Take a look at our picks for the top smartphone cameras and why we think they stand out.
We're counting down our top 10 most popular sample galleries of 2017. At the #7 spot is the ready-for-any-weather Olympus Tough TG-5.
By combining his skills as a time-lapse filmmaker and an engineer, Julian Tryba created this out-of-this-world creative 'layer-lapse' of New York City that alternates between night and day in time with the music.
Canon Japan's new lineup of novelty camera-themed gifts was just revealed online, including a lens mug and lens thermos, two retro camera-themed USB drives, and a picnic mat.
The Profoto A1 most certainly isn’t for everyone [...] But for those who are used to using the Profoto systems, and want something that pairs seamlessly with the strobes you already have, there is no better companion.
Fujifilm has asked a US district court to clear it of any wrongdoing, after allegedly being threatened with trademark litigation by Polaroid.
While a couple of our reviewers are out testing the Sony a7R III in Arizona, back in Seattle we slapped the camera in front of our studio scene to get a close look at its image quality. See how it stacks up against the competition.
We're counting down our top 10 most popular sample galleries of 2017, and the #8 ranking belongs to the Nikon D7500.
B+W has announced a new aluminum filter holder that offers three slots so users can use multiple filters at the same time. The holder goes with the 2mm thick 100mm square filters it launched earlier this year.
8K video is coming a lot faster than you think, and Blackmagic is ready for it. Meet the DeckLink 8K Pro, a new high performance PCI-E capture and playback card built to handle 'real time high resolution 8K workflows.'
"Glass is everywhere in photography. From Eugène Atget’s reflective vitrines to Lee Friedlander’s sly self-portraiture, photographers have long been in thrall to the visual complications glass can inject into a composition."
Former Apple Aperture lead developer Nik Bhatt has designed an iOS app called RAW Power that lets you edit raw photos from your professional camera using your phone and tablet.... color us intrigued.
Advertising photographer Blair Bunting got his hands on the new Microsoft Surface Book 2, and it blew him away. Bye bye MacBook Pro...
The OnePlus 5T retains many of the 5's features and specs, but comes with an edge-to-edge display and a dual-camera that is optimized for low light.
Sony's recently announced IMX461 backside illuminated medium format sensor will bring 100MP resolution and almost 2x the speed to the next-gen Fuji GFX and Hasselblad X1D.
With the ‘Rent a Hasselblad’ camera equipment renting program, the camera makers is aiming to give enthusiast and professional photographers easier access to its medium-format photography products.
They say seeing is believing, and that's exactly what happened when one DPR staffer took the Google Pixel 2 out for an afternoon shooting under challenging conditions.
We're counting down our top 10 most popular sample galleries of 2017. At the #9 spot we have the Fujifilm GFX 50S, a medium-format camera that took CP+ 2017 by storm.
Instagram is testing a new feature that lets you follow hashtags in addition to people, making it possible to keep track of your favorite #landscapes or #portraits without leaving your home feed.
Despite the gigantic volume of second hand film bodies in existence, it seems there is still a demand for new 35mm SLRs with a retro feel. The latest is a remake of the Ihagee Elbaflex from the 1960s, but with a Nikon F mount.
The Polaroid Insta-Share Moto Mod straps an instant printer directly to your Moto Z smartphone, so you can print your photos as soon as you've captured them.
The Mitakon Speedmaster 135mm F1.4 lens is being relaunched in 7 different mounts, including: Sony A, Sony E, Canon EF, Nikon F, Fujifilm G, Pentax K, and Leica L. Got an extra three grand lying around?
In January, Kodak announced it would bring back the beloved slide film Ektachrome. The timeline has been pushed back a bit, but Kodak says you can expect to purchase Ektachrome again in 2018.
Instagram popularity is threatening some of the most beautiful landscapes in the US, as hordes of 'nature lovers' trample over the same spots over and over again in search of the same exact shot.