Full review posted for Nikon Coolpix 4800 (UPDATED)|
(Thursday, September 16, 2004 - 02:17 EDT)
Nikon's Coolpix line of consumer digicams has always been well-received, appreciated for their image quality and ease of use.
Lately, they've been finding success in bringing their technology into the consumer market, most notably with the very successful Coolpix 4300 and Coolpix 3200 models in 2003. The Coolpix 4800 continues that trend, bringing forward many of the user-interface innovations of the 3200 model, but upgrading the design with a 4-megapixel CCD very sharp 8.3x optical zoom lens. In my testing, the Coolpix 4800 delivered good color and sharp images, and overall was an enjoyable camera to work with.
Bottom line, the Coolpix 4800 is a nice, compact point & shoot digicam with a nice long zoom lens, a good choice for anyone who wants an easy to use camera that delivers good-looking pictures with pleasing color and plenty of resolution. For those willing to delve just slightly deeper than "just push the button" its extensive scene modes and unique framing-assist options greatly extend its capabilities, making it easy to bring back good-looking shots of what might otherwise be difficult subjects. All in all, a good choice for the point & shoot user looking for an easy to use long-zoom digicam with a surprising range of capabilities.
In my testing, the Coolpix 4800's images showed accurate exposure and better than average color, but were a bit more contrasty than I personally prefer. Under average lighting, the high contrast makes the sort of bright, snappy-looking images that appeal to many consumers. Under harsh outdoor lighting though, the high contrast resulted in lost highlight detail and a harsher look to the images, making it worthwhile to acquaint yourself with the contrast-adjustment option on its record menu.
Overall though, the Coolpix 4800 looks like an excellent long-zoom digicam, easily winning status as a "Dave's Pick" for its combination of color, sharpness, and capabilities. Check it out!
UPDATED 2004-09-16 02:25ET: Our friends at Steve's Digicams have posted a first look at the Coolpix 4800, so be sure to check it out after reading our own full review!