Nikon L840 Image Gallery: See how far just a few hundred dollars can reach in the 855mm eq world


posted Wednesday, May 27, 2015 at 2:58 PM EST


If you only have a few hundred dollars to spend, but want a lot of zoom range while still yielding reasonably good image quality, you'll want to take a look at our initial Nikon L840 image gallery. Perhaps you're tired of your smartphone lacking zoom range, or you need a capable zoom companion for the times you don't want to haul out your big rig, but don't want to dip too deeply into your "lens budget" to get there. Whatever your own personal reasons, many of our readers have been looking at the Nikon L840 since its release earlier this year.

Sporting a 38x range extending out to 855mm eq. at the telephoto end, the L840 is no slouch when it comes to reach, though it's certainly not in the new echelon of contenders in the 50x and higher range. This is especially true considering the new superzoom king also hailing from the halls of Nikon in the form of the 83x, 2000mm eq. P900. Yes, 855mm eq. is modest by those standards, and yet in these budget-conscious times, it's currently selling for about $199, which is less than half the price of most of the heavyweights; and is at a far different price point than the average of the longer superzoom bunch at around $500 and higher.

But what about the real world images... do they stand up to the higher dollar zoom contenders? I spent the recent holiday weekend trying to determine the answer to that very question for you, and have just posted 33 images to our Nikon L840 gallery page. Below are a sampling from the gallery to get you started at a variety of ISO settings and focal lengths. Most have been slightly cropped, edited a bit to balance shadows and highights, as well as resized to fit this page. In order to view the actual image as delivered straight from the L840, just click on any image below where you'll access a carrier page providing the link to the full resolution image and the EXIF data.

1/250s / f/6.5 / ISO 125 / -0.7 EV / 855mm eq.

1/125s / f/6.5 / ISO 125 / 855mm eq.

1/250s / f/5.3 / ISO 140 / -1.3 EV / 170mm eq.

1/125s / f/6.0 / ISO 450 / -1.0 EV / 577mm eq.

1/60s / f/5.8 / ISO 800 / -0.7 EV / 369mm eq.

And now for a wide-tele pair to give some scale to the relative potential of this 855mm eq. lens. You'll need to look closely to make out the baby dragon in the center of the wide angle (23mm eq.) image, but by 855mm "Baby Vladymir" fills the frame.

1/250s / f/3.0 / ISO 280 / 23mm eq.
1/100s / f/6.5 / ISO 400 / 855mm eq.

After experiencing the initial gallery potential of the L840, and given the current street price of ~US$199, I'm having a hard time finding a reason to not recommend this little guy. Want to try a long zoom for the first time without much of a financial gamble? Need a companion to your smartphone with some real zoom reach without breaking the bank? Perhaps a lighter sidekick to your DSLR, or a capable backup to your mega-zoom camera? For about the price of an average monthly water bill, it can be yours in the form of the 855mm eq. Nikon L840.

Of course, at this price range there are the usual limitations in certain performance areas that come with the territory, so stay tuned for more. And in the meantime, make sure and visit our Nikon L840 Gallery Page, which contains not only additional examples at various ISOs but also a few examples using digital zoom as well (look for "digi-tele" in the filename).

1/320s / f/6.5 / ISO 125 / -0.7 EV / 855mm eq.

Nikon L840 GalleryOverview