Nikon Coolpix 8800 Review

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Nikon Coolpix 8800


First Look posted 9/16/2004
Full review and samples posted 12/6/2004

Introduction & Physical Views


Click to take a QuickTime VR tour of the Nikon Coolpix 8800. All photos are (c) 2001 by Steve's Digicams
Click on the Coolpix 8800 to take a QuickTime VR tour


The flagship of Nikon's Coolpix series, the Coolpix 8800 offers the longest zoom range available in the 8- megapixel category, and is the first 8-megapixel 10X zoom digital camera with Vibration Reduction (VR). VR automatically detects and compensates for the small camera movements that cause image blur. This offers the user the ability to shoot at shutter speeds up to three stops slower without the risk of camera vibrations blurring the image. It features an 8.0 megapixel effective CCD (3,264 x 2,448-pixels) and a 10x Optical (35-350mm) Nikkor lens, with Nikon's Extra-low Dispersion (ED) glass elements. It has a high resolution (235,000 pixel) electronic viewfinder (EVF) for through-the-lens viewing and a 1.8" vari-angle color LCD monitor.

This is one of the first Coolpix cameras with full i-TTL flash capability (when used with external SB-600 and SB-800 Speedlights), which gives the user complete control over the flash unit's zoom head. Additionally, combining a number of high-end Nikon technologies, a feature called Auto Color Enhancement accurately records, assesses and fine-tunes the colors within images to achieve more vivid results.


Nikon Coolpix 8800


Not only is it stylish and compact (for an 8-megapixel 10x zoom camera), but it is also constructed with a lightweight magnesium alloy body that has been designed for durability and portability.

For added convenience, the Coolpix 8800 now incorporates 15 pre-programmed Scene modes, many of which can be found on recent Coolpix digital cameras. These Scene modes allow users to capture striking images in practically any shooting situation. Simply select the mode appropriate to the lighting conditions, and the camera will automatically adjust focus, flash, contrast, sensitivity and white balance.

It's powered by the new EN-EL7 Lithium Ion rechargeable battery, which adds incredible power and freedom to both the cameras and users alike. With the new EN-EL7, users will be able to shoot up to 240 frames on a single charge. It also features the newly adopted JPEG EXTRA file format, which offers higher image quality with less compression (compression rate: 1/2) in addition to their Basic, Normal, Fine, TIFF and NEF/RAW settings.

The Coolpix 8800's software package includes PictureProject, ArcSoft including VideoImpression to edit and share QuickTime movies taken with the camera and Panorama Maker, which takes advantage of the camera's Panorama Assist Mode and seamlessly stitches together multiple horizontal or vertical images to create beautiful panoramic photos.


Coolpix 8800 Features:

  • 8-Megapixel resolution CCD imager (3,264 x 2,448-pixels)
  • Nikkor 10x zoom (35-350mm in 35mm equivalent) with ED glass
  • Macro focus with AF as close as 1.2"
  • Fully articulating 270°, 1.8" color LCD monitor
  • Electronic viewfinder (EVF) with 235,000 pixels
  • CompactFlash Type II card slot (Microdrive compatible)
  • Record images in TIFF-RGB, JPEG or RAW (NEF) format
  • Programmed Auto (with Shift), Shutter-Priority, Aperture-Priority and Full Manual
  • Drive modes: Single, Continuous H, Continuous L, Ultra High Speed Continuous, 16-Shot Multi, and 5-shot buffer
  • 15 pre-programmed Scene Modes, including Panorama Assist Mode
  • Shutter speeds from 1/3000 sec. to 8 secs (Bulb to 10 minutes!)
  • Five Movie modes to choose from including B&W and Sepia
  • Interval Timer shooting, choose interval between images from 30 secs. to 60 min.
  • 7-bladed iris diaphragm for true depth of field control
  • Five-area multi autofocus system, user-selectable and Spot-AF
  • 256-segment Matrix Metering, Center-weighted or Spot
  • Noise Reduction for long exposures
  • ISO sensitivity of Auto, 50, 100, 200, 400
  • Matrix Auto White Balance plus Daylight, Incandescent, Fluorescent, Cloudy, Speedlight, Shade and Custom Preset
  • Built-in flash with Auto, Cancel, Auto with red-eye reduction, Fill, Slow sync, and Rear-curtain sync
  • Hotshoe for external Nikon Speedlights
  • PictBridge and Epson PRINT Image Matching Technology compatible
  • USB 2.0 (High-Speed) port for image download/remote control
  • EN-EL7 Li-ion battery and charger included
  • Included ML-L3 remote control






DIWA Gold Medal Award

DIWA Award for Nikon 8800


9. March 2005 - Digital Imaging Websites Association (DIWA), an international organisation of websites focusing on digital imaging, today announced that the Nikon COOLPIX 8800 has won a DIWA GOLD Award for its excellent performance. Last year, its predecessor - COOLPIX 8700 - received a DIWA Silver Award; today the Nikon COOLPIX 8800 is the proof of improvements and added features, and therefore a true DIWA Gold Award winner.

The advanced Megazoom Nikon COOLPIX 8800 has passed the rigorous DIWA tests with excellent results, with average scores well above the limit for overall excellence. The new Nikon COOLPIX 8800 is the flagship in the Coolpix range of high-performance digital cameras. 8 Megapixel image resolution and a high quality 10x Zoom-Nikkor lens are supported by an outstanding Vibration Reduction system to compensate for camera shake. Several reviews, based on the comprehensive DIWA testing procedure, confirmed that the Nikon COOLPIX 8800 is a considerable upgrade from its predecessor, the COOLPIX 8700, enough to climb to the highest level of DIWA quality ranking.

The Nikon COOLPIX 8800 delivers the performance it is built for; effortless capturing high quality professional images, at high speed if necessary, thanks to its five image buffer memory. The new D-Lighting exposure system proved its excellence in practical use and the newly added JPEG EXTRA mode preserves the camera's high image quality thanks to reduced compression rate. The overall averaged score concludes that the Nikon COOLPIX 8800 is a compact package filled with professional performance at an affordable price.



Physical Views

Nikon Coolpix 8800

Nikon Coolpix 8800

Nikon Coolpix 8800

Nikon Coolpix 8800

Nikon Coolpix 8800

Nikon Coolpix 8800

Nikon Coolpix 8800





Nikon Coolpix 8800

The Coolpix 8800 compared in size to a standard CD




Nikon Coolpix 8800

Nikon's 8-megapixel duo for 2004, The Coolpix 8800 and the Coolpix 8400.




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Features & Controls












Coolpix 8800 Specifications

 CCD 2/3-in. high-density CCD; total pixels: 8.31 million
8.0 million effective pixels
 Image sizes 8M (3264 x 2448)
3:2 (3264 x 2176)
5M (2592 x 1944)
3M (2048 x 1536)
2M (1600 x 1200)
1M (1280 x 960)
PC (1024 x 768)
TV (640 x 480)
 Lens 10x Zoom-Nikkor ED lens
f = 8.9-89mm (equivalent to 35-350mm) F2.8-5.2 with macro; 16 elements in 10 groups; all glass, Nikon Super Integrated Coating (SIC) applied; two glass-molded ED lens elements included
 Digital Zoom Up to 4x stepless digital zoom
 Autofocus Contrast-detect TTL AF with AF-assist illuminator
7,123-step autofocus control including macro range
5-area Multi AF or Spot AF selectable
 Focus modes 1) Continuous AF mode (when using LCD monitor)
2) Single AF mode (when not using LCD monitor and/or selectable from shooting menu)
3) Manual from 1.2 in. to infinity with focus confirmation indication
 Shooting distance 19.7 in. (50cm) to infinity
1.2 in. (3cm) to infinity in Macro and Manual focus mode
 Viewfinder 235,000-dot Electronic viewfinder (EVF)
0.44-inch high temp polysilicon TFT LCD with LED backlight
Magnification 0.27 - 2.1x, frame coverage: approx. 97% (100% in play)
diopter adjustment: -3-+1m-1
 LCD monitor Fully articulating, 270°, 1.8", 134,000-dot, low-temp. polysilicon TFT LCD
LED backlight w/adjustable brightness (5 levels)/hue adjustment (11 steps)
Frame coverage: approx. 97% capture / 100% play
 Auto OFF mode 30 sec.; can be set manually (1/5/30 min.)
 Image Storage System: EXIF 2.2 file (uncompressed TIFF or compressed JPEG) Design rule for Camera File system (DFC), Digital Print Order Format (DPOF), NEF RAW mode, QuickTime Motion JPEG (Movie). Note that NEF and TIFF modes are only available at FULL image size.
 Media CompactFlash (CF) Card Type I or II
Microdrive compatible
 Shooting modes AUTO, Program AE, Shutter Speed Priority, Aperture Priority, Manual, and SCENE
 Scene modes Back light, Beach/Snow, Close up, Dusk/Dawn, Copy, Fireworks show, Landscape, Museum, Night landscape, Night portrait, Panorama, Party/Indoor, Portrait, Sports, Sunset
 User setting 1) Single, 2) Continuous H (2.5 fps; up to 5 frames), 3) Continuous L (1.2 fps; up to 12 frames), 4) Multi-shot 16 (consecutive 16 frames at 1.5 fps), 5) Ultra HS (high-speed) (640 x 480 pixels; 30 fps, up to 100 frames), 6) 5 shot buffer (1 fps), 7) Interval Timer Shooting, 8) Movie: TV movie (640 x 480 pixels) with audio at 30 fps; up to 60 secs., Small movie (320 x 240 pixels) with audio at 15 fps; up to 895 secs., Time-lapse movie (640 x 480 pixels) at 30 fps; up to 35 secs., Sepia movie (320 x 240 pixels) with audio at 15 fps; up to 895 secs. and B/W movie (320 x 240) at 15 fps; up to 895 secs. are selectable
 Exposure metering 4-mode TTL metering:
1) 256-segment Matrix
2) Center-Weighted
3) Spot and
4) Spot AF Area
 Shutter 2-1/3000 sec. (auto and program exposure mode), 8-1/3000 sec. (exposure modes S and A), Bulb/Time (max. 10 min.) and 8-1/3000 sec. (exposure mode M), 1/30-1/8000 sec. (Ultra HS). Maximum at some apertures is 1/1500 sec.
 Aperture 7-blade iris diaphragm
10 steps in 1/3EV increments to f/8
 Exposure control 1) Programmed Auto with Flexible Program
2) Shutter-Priority Auto
3) Aperture-Priority Auto
4) Manual; Exposure Compensation (±2 EV in 1/3 EV steps)
5) Auto Bracketing (3 or 5 steps within ±2 EV)
6) AE-BSS (3 modes: Highlight, Shadow, Histogram)
 Exposure range Wide: 0.0 - +18.5EV;
Telephoto: +1.8 - +18.5 EV
 Best-Shot Selector (BSS) Camera takes a series of shots and records the most detailed image of the series using anti-jitter logic which is effective for telephoto and macro shooting. Not available when the Speedlight is on.
 ISO Sensitivity 50, 100, 200, 400, or Auto
 White balance 1) Matrix Auto White Balance with TTL control
2) 6 preset modes (Daylight/Incandescent/Fluorescent/ Cloudy/Speedlight/Shade)
3) Custom Preset
4) White balance bracketing
 Self-timer 10 sec. or 3 sec. duration
 Built-in Speedlight Shooting range: approx. 1.64 ft. - 19.7 ft. (0.5 - 6.0m) (W), approx. 3.3 ft. - 9.8 ft. (1.0 - 3.0m) (T) Flash modes: Auto Flash, Flash Cancel, Red-Eye Reduction, Fill Flash, Slow Sync, and Rear-curtain Sync
 External Speedlight Connects to built-in hotshoe. When using Nikon Speedlight SB-600 or SB-800, zoom head on flash can be controlled by the camera; built-in Speedlight can be disabled when using external Speedlight(s)
 Playback options Full-frame, Thumbnail (4/9 segments), Slide show, Movie with audio, Playback zoom (up to 10x); File information; Shooting information; Histogram indication and highlight point display; Hide and protect attributes can be set to each image; Focus confirmation indication; RAW image playback
 Delete function Deletes all frames or selected frames
 Interface USB 2.0 High-Speed interface
 Supported Platforms Windows 98SE/Me/2000/XP
Mac OS 9 - 9.x, OS X (10.1.3 or later)
 Video output NTSC or PAL (selectable)
 I/O terminal Power input
Digital output for Audio/Video and USB
Hot shoe for external Speedlight
 Included Accessories Lens Cap, Camera Strap, USB Cable, Audio/Video Cable, EN-EL7 Rechargeable Li-ion Battery, ML-L3 Remote Controller, MH-56 Battery Charger, PictureProject CD-ROM, Quick Start Guide, Instruction Manual and Warranty Card.
 Optional Accessories FC-E9 Fisheye Converter, WC-E80 Wide angle Converter, TC-E17ED Telephoto Converter, UR-E18/E17 Lens Adapters, HN-CP14 Lens Hood, EH-54 AC Adapter, CS-CP21 Soft Case, Various size CompactFlash cards, SB-600 and SB-800 Speedlights, MB-CP11 battery pack, and FF-CP11 Neutral color, Circular polarizing, and Neutral density filters
 Power requirements Nikon EN-EL7 lithium rechargeable (supplied.) Optional Nikon MB-CP11 battery pack. Optional Nikon EH-54 AC adapter.
 Dimensions
(W x H x D)
Approx. 4.6 x 3.3 x 4.8 in. (116 x 85 x 121 mm)
 Weight
(without battery or memory cards)
Approx. 1 lb. 5 oz. (600 g)

Specifications as represented by the manufacturer





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Features & Controls




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