The Nikon Coolpix P80 gets mixed reviews, and ultimately there are other 18x, 10-megapixel digital cameras that are recommended more highly. There are some good features like voice annotation, easy automatic controls and manual options -- but there are lots of complaints about image quality, no RAW support that would let you tweak those images, sluggishness and excessive camera shake. One credible review says you'll be OK if you don't print larger than 8 by 10 inches. Owner reviews are a bit more positive. Complaints about image quality are common for digital point-and-shoots, but the Nikon Coolpix P80 gets a little more than its share.
CNET does the best job of presenting the Nikon Coolpix P80 in a rankings list that makes it easy to compare cameras. Longer, more technical coverage can be found at specialty websites like Imaging-Resource.com and Steves-Digicams.com. Some of the complaints from users at Amazon.com echo those of professional reviewers.
The Nikon Coolpix P80 gets a so-so rating at CNET. The gist is there are good features like an 18x lens and voice annotation, but no RAW support, sluggish performance and too much optical noise above ISO 200.
Review: Nikon Coolpix P80, Lori Grunin, June 9, 2008
Lab and hands-on testing provide thorough coverage. Overall, the review says, the Nikon Coolpix P80 is portable (although not pocket-size), considering its 18x lens, but the images are disappointing if you want prints larger than 8 by 10 inches.
Review: Nikon Coolpix P80, Stephanie Boozer and Shawn Barnett, Dec. 16, 2008
The gist of this thorough review is that the image quality, ease of use, versatility and price are cool, but that "the slower shooting performance, uncomfortable EVF eye piece, amount of noise in high sensitivity photos and slower face detection AF system really disappointed us."
Review: Nikon Coolpix P80 Review, Editors of Steves-Digicams.com, May 27, 2008
While Stuart Miles calls the Nikon Coolpix P80 "disappointing," it's worth noting that in a review of the Fujifilm FinePix S1000FD posted (but not necessarily written) 10 days earlier, Miles recommends the Nikon Coolpix P80 over the Fujifilm. He also says that when shooting in the Sport Continuous Mode (rapid sequence), you're going to get 3 megapixels rather than 10.
Review: Nikon Coolpix P80 Digital Camera Review: Will This Get You in the Action?, Stuart Miles, May 16, 2008
Great Britain's ePhotoZine.com looks barebones, but reviews offer some meat. Matt Grayson says that the 18x lens creates more shake than can be suppressed, that the narrow field of view does not let in enough light, and that the "noise" test yielded results "not worthy of the Nikon name."
Review: Nikon Coolpix P80 Digital Camera Review, Matt Grayson, May 6, 2008
The Nikon Coolpix P80 gets high scores from the vast majority of more than 160 owner reviews, but there are some complaints -- most about blurry, grainy or streaky images.
Review: Nikon Coolpix P80, Contributors to Amazon.com