I really want to like the Nikon 8800, but... help please. (long)

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Joseph Miller, Jan 20, 2005.

  1. My first digital camera was a Nikon CP950, and it was excellent,
    providing me with 1000's of nicely exposed, perfectly focused pictures.
    I next bought a Canon S400 for more pixels and extreme portability and
    now have the S500, having given my wife the S400. The S500 takes superb
    images (the camera performance still amazes me!), and 14x17 inch prints
    are very sharp. However, my goal has always been something like 8 mpx
    in part to allow for small crops, a much longer zoom, and vibration
    reduction (VR). Also, I thought it would be nice to have some extras,
    like a movie mode, time-lapse, long night-time exposures, and so on. For
    me the definition of a good camera is a camera that you have with you.
    I looked at the Canon 20D loved its sophistication and quality. But
    it's big. My last and best film camera was a Canon EOS 10s, a great
    camera that I didn't even take on vacations after a while; I dreaded
    lugging it around. So... I thought the Nikon 8800 could be the answer
    to my dreams. It has everything I wanted, and it wasn't too big.
    However, I tried one out for a while in a camera store, and I was
    annoyed by the shutter lag and the hunting around for focus at full
    telephoto. These things of course have been major complaints about the
    camera, but the CP950 is no speed demon, and speed never bothered me
    with it. Neither did lack of higher ISOs. But I comapered the 8800 to
    the Panasonic FZ20, and the latter just seemed to be snappier and more
    responsive in my hands. The 8800 seemed sluggish in comparison. maybe
    I expect much more than when I bought my CP950.

    So, on to my questions. For those of you that own Nikon 8800s and have
    used them for a while, how annoying have you found this sluggishness?
    Has it interferred with getting pictures you want? Have you just
    developed techniques that more or less unconsciously allow you to
    compensate for shutter lag so that you hardly notice it (that's what
    happened to me on my 950).

    Any comments would be appreciated. The ideal thing would be to rent one
    for a day and do a lot of shooting, but there doesn't seem to be
    anyplace around here that does that. Also, I just may try to be patient
    and wait to see what Canon's next move will be. I think they will have
    to offer something competitive to the 8800.

    Thanks in advance.
    Joseph Miller, Jan 20, 2005
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  2. Joseph Miller

    Canongirly Guest

    have a look at the Canon S1-pro.
    Canongirly, Jan 20, 2005
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  3. Joseph Miller

    Ben Thomas Guest

    I've got a Kodak DX6490. It's bloody slow compared to a DSLR, and its slowness
    often results in out of focus or completely missed shots. I will buy a Pentax
    DSLR before May to replace it. I will continue to use the Kodak for landscape
    photography, but it's no where near up to the task of trying to take photos of
    my 15 month old daughter running around the room.

    Ben Thomas - Software Engineer - Melbourne, Australia

    My Digital World:
    Kodak DX6490, Canon i9950, Pioneer A05;
    Hitachi 37" HD plasma display, DGTEC 2000A,
    Denon 2800, H/K AVR4500, Whatmough Encore;
    Sony Ericsson K700i, Palm Tungsten T.

    Opinions, conclusions, and other information in this message that do not
    relate to the official business of my employer shall be understood as neither
    given nor endorsed by it.
    Ben Thomas, Jan 20, 2005
  4. Joseph Miller

    Canongirly Guest

    Canongirly, Jan 20, 2005
  5. I took a hard look at that camera and had two major reservations:

    With the long telephoto, I would really like vibration reduction. It is
    great on the 8800. If it had VR, I'd probably buy it immediately.

    Noise is visible starting at ISO 100. That's not too good.

    The eternal problem. Nothing is perfect! I don't feel an urgency to buy
    right now, so I'll give it a while.

    Thanks for reminding mne about the Canon.

    Joseph Miller, Jan 21, 2005
  6. I went for the Panasonic FZ20 instead - at maximum zoom its lens is f/2.8
    rather than the f/2.9 of the Nikon. 5MP was enough, and it costs much
    less, of course. If you want an image-stabilised camera that's even
    smaller taking AA batteries and CF cards, the Canon S1 IS is another
    possibility. It is only 3.2MP, though.

    By the way: there is a new newsgroup where these type of cameras (ZLR) can
    be discussed:
    You'd be welcome!

    David J Taylor, Jan 21, 2005
  7. David J Taylor wrote:
    Should read:
    I went for the Panasonic FZ20 instead - at maximum zoom its lens is f/2.8
    rather than the f/4.9 of the Nikon.
    David J Taylor, Jan 21, 2005
  8. D
    The last time I went there, a week or two ago, it was so dead that I
    didn't find much of interest.
    Joseph Miller, Jan 21, 2005
  9. Joseph Miller

    Ron Baird Guest

    Greetings Ben,

    I can understand your frustration, Ben, I have two Daughters as well.
    Catching those special moments is really key.

    As to the camera being slow, the camera actions are as fast as they are set
    to be. What is taking time is the prep for the next picture, i.e. CCD has
    to be flushed and ready for another shot. Also, the buffer memory may be
    full if you have taken several shots and so will not allow another picture
    until the pictures you have already taken are processed. Is that a possible
    scenario? Also, keep in mind that the setting you choose from the many on
    the list of possible options will make a difference as well. Certain scene
    modes or other set the camera to particular settings. So, it is possible
    that these settings are not what you want.

    One of the great options that your camera has is the external flash feature.
    Like you, I took a great many pictures of my girls when they were young and
    when I had the chance as they grew up. I was fortunate to have a good flash,
    so I learned to use it pretty well. You may want to consider getting a good
    flash that has a few options that you can set as well. Makes a great deal
    of difference in the resulting pictures (i.e. stopping action etc.). Flash
    does not use any features of the camera only receives a pulse sent to it
    trigger the flash. So, all your settings if you want them, will be on the

    When I use my DX6490 I attach it and my flash to a flash handle. Lets me
    keep the flash over the camera to reduce shadow and stop the actions that
    kids can get into. It will be worth the investment in the years to come.
    Of course, your flash range will be greatly extended.

    Talk to you soon,

    Ron Baird
    Eastman Kodak Company
    Ron Baird, Jan 21, 2005
  10. It was created to help focus discussions, and reduce the overwhelming
    volume of posts here. Hope to see your next ZLR question there.

    David J Taylor, Jan 22, 2005
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