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Old Dec 22, 2004, 10:27 AM   #1
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The Coolpix 8800 is much more than a point-and-shoot camera. In fact, if you simply use the Auto mode all the time you will probably be disappointed with many of your pictures. There is no substitute for devoting the time necessary to learning the many features of this versatile camera.

If you are like me, you don't like to wade through the manual more than is absolutely necessary before starting to enjoy the camera. That's a big mistake.

Fortunately, there's a nice compromise. Go to the link below and you will find a very helpful on-line tutorial that walks you through every feature of the 8800, complete with flash movies.

I spent about an hour in that site and began to realize what a small percentage of my camera's features I had been using.

http://www.nikondigitutor.com/index_eng.html

There's simply too much to learn, and you can't expect to evaluate the camera's capabilities in a few days.

If you have other ideas and suggestions please share them here. Also, examples of your use of special features would be helpful and appreciated.

Walter
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Old Dec 22, 2004, 1:50 PM   #2
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Here are a couple of shots taken of Alcatraz Island in the San Francisco Bay 2 weeks ago with the 8800. Both shots were taken with the following settings:

Exposure program: NORMAL

Metering: MULTI-SEGMENT

White balance: AUTO

Focus Mode: AF-S

ISO: 50

In other words, I used the camera in point-and-shoot mode without other adjustments.







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Old Dec 22, 2004, 1:52 PM   #3
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Here's the second shot.

Neither is too bad, considering the grey day and subjects both close and far away. However, I'm sure that I could have made some adjustments to the camera's settings to get even better shots. For example, metering mode, white balance, etc.


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Old Dec 22, 2004, 2:33 PM   #4
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Walter C. : Thath is correct. The posibilitys are very big to play with the 8800, Do you remember how meny 35 mm. magazine need to burn until you have the pic you want ???.. When you have the experince ... maybe one or four shot.now wiht the digitalcamera, you can expend one time, and star to take photos a lot, until you know your camera and can be shure wath to do. The day will come for all of 8800 user and they will know wath to do for " THATH PICTURE " Carlitin (sorry about my english )
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Old Dec 22, 2004, 3:00 PM   #5
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Carlitin

Had I known then what I know now I could have made several adjustments to get a better picture. For example, a simple ajustment would be to use BSS (best shot selection) and the camera would take several shots and keep the best one. Another easy option would be to select Auto Bracketing for either exposure or white balance. The camera would take (and save) several pictures, each with slightly different exposures or white balance settings.

Of course, I could have also change the ISO to 100 or 200, manually set a more appropriate white balance, change the focusing mode, shutter speed, etc. The possibilities are endless. The nice thing (as with all digitals) is that you can instantly preview your shot to see if it is a "keeper", or delete it and try a different setting til you get what you want.

Walter
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Old Dec 22, 2004, 3:01 PM   #6
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Does any one have an action shot of something, anything? I just want to see what an experienced person with the 8800 can pull off. I'm tired of people saying, la la la DSLR is the only way to go. I'm sure some one has a good one with the 8800. Please post.
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Old Dec 22, 2004, 3:11 PM   #7
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Rsway

I haven't taken any action sports type photos with my 8800 as yet. I did post a picture of dancers on the Happy Coolpix 8800 thread (page 2). They were twirling quite fast and, as you can see, the camera captured the costume details quite nicely.

Incidently, the shot was taken while I held the camera over my head making good use of the VR, rotating LCD and zoom features of the camera.

What's also impressive is the fact that I was probably 20 feet from the dancers and still got good flash results.

Someone else will probably post another type of action shot.

Walter
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Old Dec 22, 2004, 3:36 PM   #8
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Hi Walter. Once agian, I enjoy your photos ! As it's been typically rainy and gloomy here on the West Coast, I've had a lot of experience shooting through the gloom. I use an ACDsee program to edit my shots and hit "Auto Levels" one day while viewing a cloudy day shot. The difference is remarkable. The blueish tint disappears, the contrast goes up and the picture looks much more vibrant, rather than flat.

I now don't worry too much about the camera settings and just touch 'em up at home. I think any shots on full zoom seem to lose a lot of contrast and I've added settings of up to 25% to get them to the contrasty way I like them.

Have you tried editing that Alcatraz shot and dialing up the contrast a lot ?

Thanks again for sharing your travels...are you ever home ?

Steve
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Old Dec 22, 2004, 3:44 PM   #9
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Hi Walter. I tried running your photo through ACDSEE and have posted it. Do you think it looks better ? I hope you don't mind me doing that !

Steve
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Old Dec 22, 2004, 3:51 PM   #10
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Nice theme of "escape" on your photo, WalterC.

Yes, scrubbler...it does appear a bit "richer" after your edit :-)
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