Nikon CoolPix P80
Competent advanced camera with great zoom lens
- Great lens, sharp pictures
- Slow to use, high ISOs relatively useless
The P80 from Nikon is an advanced camera with a very capable zoom lens. It’s not as fast as the majority of other advanced cameras we’ve looked at, but the images it captures are rich and sharp.
Price$ 599.00 (AUD)
Nikon's Coolpix P80 is an advanced compact digital camera with an 18x zoom lens and some other useful features. It's not a particularly fast camera but it can take great photographs.
The P80 is quite bulky. It certainly won't be fitting into any pockets, but thankfully Nikon provides a full neck strap to secure the unit. There's no automatic lens cap built in, but Nikon provides a removable one. It fits on easily and can be attached to the body with a cord, but there isn't any way to clip it to the lens.
The lens is this unit's key attraction. From a relatively wide 27mm to an incredibly long 478mm, the P80 can be used in almost every situation. Focusing was generally trouble-free, and the camera was easily able to decide which elements to focus on.
The P80's menus are intuitive and simple to use; advanced options can be accessed from a dedicated setting on the shooting mode dial. There are plenty of options to be found in the advanced settings menu, including an ISO range from 64 all the way up to 6400. This is an incredibly high ISO for a consumer-focused camera; it may not be ideal for the vast majority of situations, but its inclusion certainly isn't a negative.
The speed of the P80 is a little uninspiring. From a cold start, it takes around 3sec from pressing the power button to an image being captured. When the camera is already on, focusing and capturing an image at minimum zoom takes a full 1.1sec — which can be agonisingly slow for sports and candid photos. Time between successive single shots was around 2.5sec, largely due to a slow SD card writing speed. When set to continuous shooting mode without flash, images were captured at approximately 1.3 frames per second.
When shooting, you can choose between the LCD and the P80's viewfinder — which uses a small LCD screen rather than an optical frame. These aren't particularly sharp, which means that sometimes you simply have to trust that the camera is focused on the correct object. The LCD is otherwise good, performing well under direct light and maintaining its colour from wide viewing angles.
To test the camera's image quality we took several standard photos and ran them through the Imatest image processing. Colour reproduction was the strongest point for the P80 — it was accurate and balanced without being bland and unsaturated; the results were generally on par with the Panasonic Lumix DMC-FX520 that we looked at recently. Picture sharpness is another solid plus for this unit. From minimum to maximum zoom, we were pleased to find that pictures were consistently crisp, with fine detail easily distinguishable when examining photos.
Performance using the different ISO ranges varies. The smart setting allows the ISO to vary automatically between 64 and 400 — this is a safe setting to leave it on for everyday use. Manual settings of up to 6400 are available, but in an everyday situation the high settings will introduce noticeable blurriness because of the on-board noise reduction software.
It may not be the fastest advanced compact on the market, but the P80 excels when it comes to capturing crisp, vibrant pictures both up close and at long distances.
Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 LG 2017 OLED TV range full review: W7 Signature Wallpaper, G7, E7 and C7 UHD TVs
- 2 Tag Heuer Connected Smartwatch and Android Wear 2 review
- 3 Subaru XV 2017 review
- 4 Samsung 2017 QLED Q7 TV: Full, in-depth review
- 5 Kogan Atlas UltraSlim Pro laptop: full, in-depth review
Latest News Articles
- Boom: SanDisk just dropped the world's largest SD card
- Camera app makers tap into RAW power with iOS, and look forward to dual lenses
- Google Camera 3.2 lets you snap pictures while recording video
- CES 2016: Top 10 trends
- Sony α7S II aimed film-makers and low light photographers
PCW Evaluation Team
A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.
I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.
As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.
I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.
Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!
For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.
- Garmin Fenix 5 fitness tracker smartwatch review
- MSI GE72 7RE Apache Pro gaming laptop review
- LG 2017 OLED TV range full review: W7 Signature Wallpaper, G7, E7 and C7 UHD TVs
- Which flagship TV is best? Sony 4K HDR Bravia 2016 versus LG 4K HDR OLED 2016
- 10 Blu-ray movies / Best looking Blu-ray movies
- FTSocial Media Executive / Specialist (Facebook) - online gamblingNSW
- FTSenior Software Engineer - JavaQLD
- FTSnr Technical Salesforce Consultant Global IT Managed Services - SydneyNSW
- TPSenior Project ManagerVIC
- FTSharepoint AdministratorQLD
- CCSAP ISU Functional ConsultantVIC
- FTAgile CoachNSW
- CCInfrastructure Business AnalystNSW
- FTNetwork EngineerACT
- FTPrincipal Consultant / Account Delivery Executive.NSW
- CCGIS DeveloperQLD
- FTApplication AnalystSA
- CCChange AnalystNSW
- FTProject Control Analyst - PMONSW
- FTEnterprise ArchitectVIC
- CCGIS Consultant/ Developer - BRISBANEQLD
- CCService DeskSA
- FTIT Data ArchitectACT
- CCIdentity Access Management - Business AnalystVIC
- CCTesting Manager - Energy sectorVIC
- FTSolution ArchitectWA
- FTSupport Analyst - TallymanVIC
- FTSenior iOS DeveloperNSW
- FTIT Support EngineerNSW