Friday, September 6, 2013

Nikon Coolpix P7800, Same Old; Same Old!

Yesterday Nikon announced the new Coolpix P7800 to replace their one year old P7700.

Notice the new EVF (Electronic View Finder) on the P7800, photographers must have asked for this feature. The view finder was completely removed in P7700. It is strange though that Nikon does not publicise this feature in their web site!

I am glad that the quick set left dial on the P7700 is taken off, it was so sensitive that brushing the button brought up the menu unnecessary.

Kudos to Nikon for retaining the swiveling LCD screen on the rear, the latest Canon G16 still wear a fixed screen; BIG MISTAKE! Especially now the P7800 come with an EVF too, these two features can be a deal breaker for G buyer!

As you can see from the specifications, the two cameras are virtually the same except the newer P7800 come with an EVF.  The most important part of the camera, the sensor and the zoom lens are identical, I suppose Nikon took to the "If aren't broke, don't fix it!" seriously; not that it is a bad thing ;)

Nikon also post some pretty high resolution JPEG samples, supposedly taken by the new P7800...

Shot at 28mm eqv, ISO 250 f/2.2; the sharpness is very impressive! I know this is possible because from my experience of using the P7700, I realised the little zoom is optimised at this "mid range" for sharpness.

Another situation the little P7800 will excel, at ISO 80; maximum zoom of 200mm eqv. , f/4.

However, I suspect; the zoom lens on the P7800 (just like the P7700) will not perform optimally at "landscapes distance".

I have done many test shooting distanced subjects with the P7700, all the results were a bit soft. Just to make sure the softness was not caused by the slight auto focus error, today I test it again in fixed infinity mode and manual focus mode.

Confirmed, yet again that the zoom lens on the P7700 (or the P7800) is not very sharp with the distant objects.

Nikon is very smart not to present samples taken as such!

It is an incredibly good zoom lens at close-up though!

Famous Last Words...

So, should I or should I not upgrade from a P7700 to P7800?

NO!  Unless, you really, really miss using a viewfinder!

However, if it is a choice of between the Canon G16 and P7800; I would seriously consider the later for the EVF and articulating screen!

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