If you want an ultra-zoom camera that is easily portable, reviews point to the Nikon Coolpix S8200. This 16.1-megapixel digital camera packs a 14x zoom into a body that's only 1-inch thick. Its slim body is also home to a good number of features, including a large, 3-inch LCD display, full HD video (1080p) and image stabilization technology. Reviewers say the Nikon Coolpix S8200 is fast -- it powers up in seconds and has a fast continuous shooting mode as well. Speedy autofocus is another plus. Video quality is good, according to reviews, and experts say the Nikon camera is very easy to use, making it a good bet for beginners and casual photographers.
Image quality may be a disappointment for those used to more expensive cameras or DSLRs -- reviewers report visible noise at ISO 200 and above. In good light though, most users will be pleased with their photos. If you're willing to spend more, the Canon PowerShot SX260 HS (*Est. $230) earns the best reviews overall, and it's not much bigger than the Nikon Coolpix S8200.
For beginner photographers looking for a long-zoom camera in a super-compact package, the Nikon Coolpix S8200 fills the bill. More advanced users may be disappointed, since the Nikon Coolpix S8200 has no manual shooting modes; the Canon PowerShot SX260 HS (*Est. $330) is a better choice.
Although he says that image quality is "only just above average," Mark Goldstein gives the Nikon Coolpix S8200 a Highly Recommended award. High points include fast continuous shooting and a bright display.
Review: Nikon Coolpix S8200 Review, Mark Goldstein, Oct. 20, 2011
CNET gives the Nikon Coolpix S8200 a very good rating. Joshua Goldman finds a few faults, including a below-average flash, but it has an excellent feature set for this price range.
Review: Nikon Coolpix S8200, Joshua Goldman, Jan. 27, 2012
The Nikon Coolpix S8200 earns a 4-star rating (out of 5) from Britain's TechRadar.com. "As a beginner-friendly, go-anywhere compact, the Nikon Coolpix S8200 excels in just about every aspect," says Josie Reavely. However, some manual shooting modes would be nice.
Review: Nikon Coolpix S8200 review, Josie Reavely, Oct. 15, 2011
EphotoZine.com gives the Nikon Coolpix S8200 a high overall rating -- 4.5 stars out of 5. As with other reviewers, Daniel Bell wishes the camera included some manual shooting modes, but he's impressed with the feature set, handling and image quality.
Review: Nikon Coolpix S8200 Digital Compact Camera Review, Daniel Bell, Nov. 8, 2011
5. What Digital Camera
The Nikon Coolpix S8200 gets high scores for image quality, design and value from WhatDigitalCamera.com. "Add a 1080p HD movie mode and there's a whole lot to like about the S8200," says Mike Lowe.
Review: Nikon Coolpix S8200 review, Mike Lowe, Oct. 6, 2011