Customer Review

214 of 215 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Functionality of an SLR without the cost or expense, April 15, 2010
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This review is from: Nikon Coolpix P100 10 MP Digital Camera with 26x Optical Vibration Reduction (VR) Zoom and 3-Inch LCD (Black) (OLD MODEL) (Electronics)
Ok, so I gave it a title that probably makes you wonder what I could possibly be talking about so here it is:
1. a really wide angle lens (26mm) for those close up shots and scenery shots (you know, the church with all of the spires that you have to backup all the way around the block to get into the picture).
2. a fantastic mechanical zoom lens that goes up to 678mm to bring in those distant shots (an with a tripod, the digital zoom puts you into the far objects pocket!). Keep in mind that with a zoom this large, holding it by hand is NOT going to produce a nice picture no matter how much stabilization is built into the camera!
3. One handed camera that is easy to use with a single hand and light enough to do so all day!
4. An articulated view screen that allows you to take pictures over the head of everyone crowding around the parade and still see what you are taking a picture of; it even allows you to take the pictue under the legs of someone standing in front of you or take that shot of a flower without having to bend down!
5. A camera body and lens that looks exactly like the SLR Digital Nikon! The only difference is you have a nice range of lens options that the other person (with the SLR) has to keep changing lenses to obtain. The camera also weighs a lot less and certainly costs a LOT less!!!
6. A wide range of shooting options from fully automatic to manual over-rides. Several scene modes also help with fast actions shots and close-ups.
7. A camera that you will not grow out of soon and one that even pleases the pro when they do not want to fuss with things.
8. the option to use a view finder if you want to! Yes, I know the 3 inch screen is nice, but if it is really sunny, the view finder works much better. Also, it is much quicker to use for those rare shots that you did not plan! You can turn off the through the lens view finder, the 3 inch monitor or both.

A 16 Gig SD card (not included, the internal memory is good for 9 pictures) gives you the ability to take over 6,000 shots (enough for that trip to Italy) without worrying about memory cards. While on that subject, this camera essentially becomes free after your first 900 pictures (figuring that film and processing for 24 exposure film ran about $10). On a recent trip to the Tulip Fields in Washington State, I shot over 300 pictures in that one day! So, the camera quickly pays for itself.

On the note of cost, this camera almost becomes a throw-away on a trip! Say you are in Italy and have been there for three weeks. You have averaged 100 pictures a day (very easy to do) and on your last day of the trip, you drop your camera from the third floor. You recover the memory card with your 2100 pictures. The camera was paid for after 900, so you are money ahead, have your pictures, and do not sweat the loss of the camera! (Ok, reality is that we will still be upset, but think how you would have felt if it was the Digital SLR with the nice zoom lens that you paid $5000 for!!)

The only negative to this camera is that Nikon does NOT make a case for the camera! No one really does. However, the Lowepro case comes very close (a little large) with a belt clip (velcro for easy on and off), a carrying strap (detachable), and a carry handle on top with a front pouch that easily fits two extra batteries and extra memory.

Speaking of battery, the included battery lasted for 350 pictures using the zoom extensively. The in camera charging unit works, but makes it a real pain. Purchase the Nikon En-El5 accessory package from Bargaincell (on Amazon) for $14 with shipping. It gives you a spare battery (larger than the original- good for 400 shots), a quick charger, a 12 volt adapter for the charger to allow you to charge from your car, and a European adapter that allows you to plug your charger in many European countries, including Russia.

This is one fantastic camera and a great price to go with it!!

UPDATE TO REVIEW:

I just returned from a trip to Russia (30 days) and I have taken over 13,000 pictures with this camera during this time. I have used the zoom feature extensively in the many churchs that we visited and at all of the other landmarks. The wide angle lens really did an outstanding job getting all of Red Square into the picture! The zoom did a fantastic job (laying on my back on the floor shooting up at the cupala) obtaining the inlaid tile pictures in the dome!

I made a comment earlier that a 16 Gig memory card would be adequate for a trip, but I found that I took almost 36 gigabyte of pictures and video on this trip! I had taken a laptop with me so that I could review pictures daily, but had not intended to actually do all of the storage on it. Well, that became my main picture store since I only had two 16 gig memory cards with me.

The HD movie feature was fantastic as we were able to record several of the live performances of Russian Dance that we went to. Having the articulated view screen allowed me to shoot great video over the heads of the people in front of us. The only issue with taking movies by hand this wasy is that your arm gets very tired after about 10 minutes of holding the camera! I should have thought to bring a tripod!!

We only had one problem in the trip with the camera and it happened after I had been taking extensive pictures in a very hot building (over 100 degrees) using the flash (took about 400 pictures). The camera closed the lens and gave me an error message. Changing the battery did not make any difference. My wife suggested that the camera had gotten too hot, so I waited 10 minutes and then tried the camera again, it worked perfectly! It has not acted up since. This happened in Moscow while the outside temperature was over 100 degrees and the building felt even hotter. As mentioned, I had been using the flash extensively and the camera was quite warm. Over the next two weeks I took over 5,000 pictures and it never acted up again.

My recommendation is a very strong buy for a great camera and HD video unit!!
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Showing 1-1 of 1 posts in this discussion
Initial post: May 13, 2010 2:18:15 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on May 13, 2010 2:20:13 PM PDT
selinz says:
Nikon DOES make a case for this. It came with my P100 kit that I got from Costco (price with case and 2gig card was $349 in the Livermore store).
The biggest problem with this camera is that it's sensor as not up to snuff with the rest ofthe camera. I have a 2005 vintage D50 that still blows it away. HOWEVER, the pictures come out decent if you use either iso 160 or iso 200. If you are used to DSLR pics you MUST stick to this ISO. Otherwise, you will be very disappointed when you look at the blown up pics.
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Reviewer

Ralph Furlong
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   

Location: Tacoma, WA USA

Top Reviewer Ranking: 316