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Nikon Coolpix 8800 First impression

Ilse Jurrien
Photokina report
Friday 17th, September 2004
Posted by: Ilse Jurrien

For a short moment we had our hands on Nikon's latest Prosumer flagship - Coolpix 8800. This new 8 Megapixel, 10x optical Zoom-Nikkor ED lens with a Vibration Reduction (VR) system on board is a high-end combination of quality and versatility. The new Nikon Coolpix 8800 is designed to be the ultimate compact digital camera for serious photographers with one goal - the highest quality of images. With its 10x zoom, it also targets those who require higher zoom power and those who benefit from its fully loaded yet completely portable design. The extremely versatile Coolpix 8800 meets their requirements, as well as demands from those who want state-of-the-art image quality and even greater ease of use.

Nikon Coolpix 8800 - Lens accessories
And for those who want to expand their options, the Nikon Coolpix 8800 offers a range of lens converters, Speedlights and other accessories. The new camera offers 8 effective Megapixels for ultra high-definition photography. The image clarity is ensured because of the professional-quality, 10x Zoom-Nikkor ED lens. With its 35-350mm focal range (35mm equivalent), the lens incorporates two ED (Extra-low Dispersion) glass lens elements to minimize chromatic aberration and produce amazingly sharp and clear images.

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Nikon 8800 - Vibrate Reduction System
A new interesting feature for a Nikon digital camera is the use of a Vibration Reduction System. When enabled the VR system automatically detects and compensates small camera movements and corrects them. This system offers the user the ability to shoot at shutter speeds up to 3 stops slower without the risk of blurry images. Thanks to this technique macro shots and handheld telephoto shots can be achieved. It even works perfect with the accessory telephoto converter lens at 600mm! (35mm equiv.)

Nikon Coolpix 8800 - Advanced features
As we can expect from a high-end Prosumer camera the Nikon 8800 offers 4 exposure modes (P, S, A and M). Beside manual settings the new Nikon model also features 15 Scene modes. Simply select the mode you desire, and the camera automatically adjusts the aperture, shutter speed, focus, flash, contrast, sensitivity and white balance. Other advanced settings are BSS (Best Shot Selector), AE-BSS (Auto Exposure-Best Shot Selector) mode, Noise reduction mode, Saturation Control and White Balance bracketing. Furthermore, to ensure flawless shootings, the camera has a 5 shot buffer mode. Beside being able capturing still images the Coolpix 8800 can record 640x480 pixels video clips with audio. Even Time-Lapse Movie mode, ideal for nature recordings, is one of the available settings. The new D-Lighting feature in Playback mode compensates for the underexposed area while maintaining the properly exposed area. Another new feature, Advanced Red-Eye Reduction, automatically corrects the red-eyes inside the camera in most instances when using the Red-Eye Reduction mode of the built-in flash.

Nikon 8800 - Vari-angle LCD display
The Coolpix 8800 has a Vari-angle LCD display to provide easy shooting from various perspectives. The high-resolution electronic viewfinder (EVF) offers a great contrast and clear view. The compact, lightweight magnesium alloy body is designed for convenience, portability and with a secure grip, comfort. For those who desire more creative freedom when editing, the Nikon 8800 also offers RAW data image mode. Also available is a newly adopted JPEG EXTRA mode allowing less compression. This Nikon camera is scheduled for release in October 2004.

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