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Old Sep 15, 2005, 1:16 PM   #1
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I've read reviews about the 8800, and comments from people who have read reviews, but since I'm still thinking about a purchase, could I hear from owners? Specifically---Satisfied that the zoom operates as advertised, and is similar to an SLR 350mm(Important for me for sporting events and safari)? Has the ISO400 proven to be a problem in low-light situations ?Is the flash adequate?Assuming you're not a pro covering sporting events or a fashion photographer, have the criticized start-up time, shutter lag, and cycle time created significant problems?Thought about a d70s, and while not put off by the body + supplied zoom, not happy with having to buy a second, expensive, bulky ultratelephoto zoom.Also, does anyone have more info than the Nikon note about the S4? 10X opt/6mp and opening price of 399? What am I missing here?Or is there a better choice for an 6-8 mp, ultra-zoom?
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Old Sep 15, 2005, 5:03 PM   #2
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couch-

I own a Coolpix 8700, and like the 8800 it is very slow to start-up, focus, and with its shot to shot times. It is terrible in low light level conditions. For the LESS money you can buy the S-9000 and have a great digital camera. Or for about the SAME money you could buy a beginning level dSLR camera and have a better set-up that the Nikon Coolpix 8800.

Sarah Joyce
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Old Sep 18, 2005, 11:43 AM   #3
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couch-

This may suprise you. I bought a brand new Nikon 8400 on ebay this week for $415. I figured at that price I could put up with it extreme slowness, because all I want to to with it is to shoot lanscapes.

Match the camera to your needs. You may find a bargain.

Sarah Joyce
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Old Sep 18, 2005, 12:01 PM   #4
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Thanks for your interest. Will check Ebay. I was hoping for an all-in-one camera, great fotos, 6-8mp, 10x zoom, minimal lag, low-light capable, not so auto that I have no control,etc. Do you know anything about the Panasonic Lumix Z30? I see you suggested the fuji s9000.*The reason?
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Old Sep 18, 2005, 12:05 PM   #5
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Hi Couch,

I'm an owner of an 8800. Here's some answers to your questions:

Specifically---Satisfied that the zoom operates as advertised and is similar to an SLR 350mm(Important for me for sporting events and safari)?

Yes. I've not checked it against a 350mm on a 35mm, but from my SLR experience, I'd have to say it does.

Has the ISO400 proven to be a problem in low-light situations?

There is significant sensor noise at ISO 400, especially if you blow up the shot

Is the flash adequate?

Probably no better or worse than any on camera built in flash. Range limited to about 15 feet

Assuming you're not a pro covering sporting events or a fashion photographer, have the criticized start-up time, shutter lag, and cycle time created significant problems?

Start up time is not the fastest, but I can live with that. Shutter lag is more than a dslr and has caused me to miss shots with the 8800. FOCUS TIME is very slow under low contrast conditions or low light - this can cause missed or poor out of focus shots in low light or action. CYCLE TIME can seem like an eternity when you need to get that second exposure NOW. For landscapes or less time critical shots - cycle time is not an issue.

Thought about a d70s, and while not put off by the body + supplied zoom, not happy with having to buy a second, expensive, bulky ultratelephoto zoom.Also, does anyone have more info than the Nikon note about the S4? 10X opt/6mp and opening price of 399? What am I missing here?Or is there a better choice for an 6-8 mp, ultra-zoom?

Bottom line - I like and am keeping my 8800 - it offers a 'complete wide to long telephoto 8mp camera in a compact package (relatively :-)) and has excellent image quality. I've taken some excellent (my opinion:-)) pictures with it, but I've also missed many due to the 8800's overall slower operation.

I wanted a dslr for its overall capabilities and this past month, bought a Canon 20D and a bag of lens. I was shooting some bird-in-flight pictures yesterday and was EXTREMELY impressed with the 20D speed of operation - focus, shot to shot, ..... It was ALWAYS ready to take the next exposure. BUT, to be fair, the 20D costs MUCH more than the 8800!! (and weighs much more too!)

So, you have to look at your needs, what you are willing to carry around and what you can afford. Then, buy it and enjoy it - focusing on its capabilities not its limitations. For me, there are times the 8800 is the perfect camera and others, the 20D.

Hope this helps,

Bob


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Old Sep 18, 2005, 12:27 PM   #6
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Appreciate your comments. As I pursued my rapidly-darting grand-daughter , hoping to get that perfect shot, trying to shoot away in rapid succession, my coolpix 950 failed me repeatedly.
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Old Sep 18, 2005, 2:18 PM   #7
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Bob-

I have attached one of my Canon 20D photos taken handheld, with no flash. I just know that my Nikon 8700 could not do this shot because I had to use ISO 1600. The Nikon 8700 can not use any more ISO than ISO 400. I used ISO 1600 because I wanted to convey the rapid motion of the dancer to the photo viewer.

Could the Nikon 8800 take this photo? I don't think so due to the ISO limitation.

Sarah Joyce
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Old Sep 18, 2005, 2:22 PM   #8
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i am with sarah on this one..

if any sort of available low light photography is your interest, you really cannot understand the importance of the higher ISO performance of a DSLR.. a dslr with useable 1600 and 3200 and a nice fast lens is simply the only way to go..

-dustin
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Old Sep 18, 2005, 2:53 PM   #9
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Speaklightly -

Could the Nikon 8800 take this photo? Only if I used a flash the size of a toaster! :idea:and gave it a 1/2 hour to focus!

By the way, very nice picture!

Your picture is demonstrates one of the reasons why I just purchased a Canon 20D (and Tamron28-75 F2.8 and Canon 70-200 F2.8 IS) --- ISO 1600 and F2.8 lens (with IS!) is fantastic! I hate to use the word 'impossible', but I think I'm safe to say that your photo of the dancer would be IMPOSSIBLE to take with an 8800.

I was in Washington DC and took many photos in the museums and of the momuments at night WITHOUT flash at up to ISO 1600. I had my 8800 with me also (I didn't have the 70-200 yet and wanted a telephoto). I tried the SAME set-up with the 8800 as with the Canon 20D of Lincoln Memorial behind the reflecting pool at NIGHT with a tripod - the 8800, I think, is still hunting for something to focus on!!! The 20D locked on focus INSTANTLY!

So, now I take my 8800 if I want a good camera for 'vacation type' pictures and I don't want to carry a big bag around. All else, it's the 20D.:idea:



Bob


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Old Sep 18, 2005, 5:26 PM   #10
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Bob-

Thanks for the post. Yes, I have my Canon 20D and have done some really excellent shots with it. However, like a lot of folks, I suppose, I wish it were a good deal smaller with the same gang busters photo quality. I don't like lugging around the Canon 20D kit. It is just too big and too heavy.

I tried the Pentax 1st DS, but it just does not produce photos that zing like the Canon 20D. While my husband likes his Canon 350D/XT, I think it is an ergonomic nightmare. That is why I keep rooting for the fixed lens cameras, they have a small kit and much less weight. I will be very interested to follow the development of the Sony R-1. It is not perfect right now. Perhaps those Sony Camera Engineers will create some much needed adjustments and revisions. I sure hope so, because that digital camera really interests me.

Sarah Joyce
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