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Old Mar 12, 2004, 11:12 AM   #1
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Default Coolpix 8700 "Hands on"

I spent an hour in the camera store yesterday, Coolpix 8700 with my Compactflash card installed. Although I like the size of the camera, I had a few somewhat serious issues.

First was that I managed to inadvertently change settings from time to time because my fingers hit one of those four buttons on the side of the lens. Nikon should have included some kind of lockout, but they didn't, so I went from normal to macro and didn't know it. Like Steve said in his review, you can re-check your settings in the EVF, but I doubt that anyone's going to do that.

I shot several pix at ISO 400, then went down to 200 for the remainder. When I got home and displayed them, I was somewhat surprised at how much noise I saw, even at ISO 200. Therefore I wasn't surprised when Steve's review indicated the presence of noise as low as ISO 100.

I shot most of my pixs at 8 MP/JPEG/fine which resulted in 2.5MB files, but I did take one TIFF at 23 MB file size. When run through the printer, you could easily tell the TIFF shot from the JPEG (Duh).

I didn't have any problems with the zoom speed of the lens, nor with "shutter lag". However the camera apparently (according to the salesman) doesn't focus until you hit the shutter release. This was awkward since I'm used to seeing an in-focus image in the viewfinder BEFORE I hit the shutter release.

Interestingly, I placed both of my downloaded pictures (one from Steve's review of the D100 and one from the 8700, but both ofthe same building taken from the same location but on different days) in front of the salesman and asked him which looked better, resolution and image quality wise. He picked the D100 shot over the higher resolution 8700 image.

Guess I'll wait to see the D70 and go from there.

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Old Mar 14, 2004, 12:14 AM   #2
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Default Re: Coolpix 8700 "Hands on"

Originally Posted by rabsparks
He picked the D100 shot over the higher resolution 8700 image.

Guess I'll wait to see the D70 and go from there.

Higher Resolution doesn't always mean better picture. The 8700 still uses the 2/3 sensor which is very prone to noise at higher MP. All the 8MP cameras that are out or coming in 2004 (F828, 8700, A2, Pro1) are really pushing the limits of the sensor. You just can't argue with physics and the physical size of the sensor.
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Old Mar 14, 2004, 10:03 AM   #3
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What's interesting is that Nikon claims that the 8700 can do a 20 x 30 but the D70 only a 16 x 20. They also sent me a jpeg of a moon shot taken with the D70. It really looks good and holds together well under magnification. Go figure.

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Old Jun 22, 2004, 8:31 PM   #4
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Ive shot over 6900 pics with my 8700 and have yet to hit one of the buttons accidentally. And, I have pudgy fingers to.

You are correct, noise is high at ISO 400, and even at 200. I have been shooting so far at ISO 50, and at times at 100. Most of my around the house grab shots are taken in the FINE/Lrge JPEG's. My real work, I shoot at the 23 meg TIFF.

I could have bought the D100, but chose the 8700 in order to get away from carrying hordes of extra gear like I did with my 35mm stuff.

Just an FYI,

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Old Jun 28, 2004, 2:15 PM   #5
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Hi Rabsparks,
I did the camera store test before I purchased My 8700. It still is not like the real world photography I do since I purchased My 8700. I shoot at 100 ASA most always with absolutly no noise or color fringing problems. I do use My 28DX external flash 99% of the time though. I do family portraits and Pet photograpy and the results are just perfect every time. These point and shoot type cameras are not designed to do quality fast action sports pictures. There are other "SLR" type cameras for that.I think all of these 8MP cameras are about the same and do a great job for what they are designed for. I can crop and still get a perfect print with My epson 1280 printer up to 13" X 19" with no problems at all. I have shot Kids doing some soccer and football but of course they are not easy like using a D2H. I do pet photo's and get some very great shots. I just have to aim the camera and forget about the digital viewfinder because it is not good for anything except still shots or one moving shot. I have tought Myself how to aim the camera like a handgun so I don't even have a problem with that anymore. The pet photo's I do are actually better then most of the ones I was doing with My Hasselblad. ( I can see what I have and I have unlimited supply of digital film) I just keep shooting until I have A very special photograph.
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