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Nikon have expertise in camera manufacture and development that is not really comparable to other makes. They have developed their own metering systems and methods that others have just copied. The F80 continues this tradition and it really is a magnificent camera for both the Professional and the Non-Professional.
Lets talk about ergonomics later and start with what this camera can do to take pictures - the reason for buying it!
Firstly, any image quality you get from this camera is far superior to any digital camera if you are comparing two photographs taken by the same photographer, even if they are using the best digital camera available. Film is better because digital camera do not yet have the right number of pixels or quality of pixels at an affordable price. Having said that the quality of the image depends on the film you use and of course on the ability of the photographer to read the situation. But if you want the best possible chance, you cannot go wrong with this camera. The 3D Matrix Metering allows you complete control over your shot, either in totally automatic mode or with some level of manual control you are getting excellent information about the composition from the in-house meter. This means that you have the right information to take excellent photos.
If you want more control then all you need is there from you, right down to overriding the metering system, to use something you might prefer from previous models or from experience in using this model. Whatever happens, this camera is unlikely to fail you. Even if you know little about photography, you can have this camera in totally automatic mode and still get great shots! This is an everyman camera and a pro camera all rolled into one! Its a camera you can learn with and a camera you can master - nothing short of a great Christmas present.
The level of control you have is entirely down to you. You can just point and shoot with autofocus, autometering and autoflash if you will. Or you can have control over shutter speed, aperture, focussing and metering. This is done with the easy to use rotator knob settings of P (totally Automatic), S (Shutter Priority), A (Aperture Priority) and M (totally Manual). There are 3 settings for Metering, which are Spot, Centre-Weighted and Full. These allow for absolute control when necessary. There are also 3 settings for Focussing - 2 are autofocus (1 Basic and the other Continuous for moving objects) and the final one is manual.
This has already shown that the range of features is diverse, and they are also of high quality.
It is also extremely easy to use, especially for those that have used Nikon SLR's before. Even if you haven't its use is intuitive and buttons right where your hands are when holding the camera, so you don't have to keep taking it away from your eye to change a setting.
The camera is reliable, much more so than any digital equivalent. The batteries last long and although these cameras have more electronic functions than their ancestors, this doesn't reduce the reliability.
The size of the camera is important for functionality and ease of use and this is the right size for most hands. It is also extremely light, even with long lenses because of its construction. Some might argue that this lightweight makes it less durable, and this is true - but the benefit of ease of use outweighs this issue by some way.
Nikon cameras are very compatible with other photographic equipment. They support all 35mm films, all Canon and Sigma lenses are made to fit it, as are most items for its accessory shoe. But Nikon branded accessories will always function better - it was made for them!
The instuction manual is comprehensive and even gives tips on shooting in difficult circumstances - I keep mine with me at all times just in case.
The camera is quite expensive, but good value for money - you get what you pay for here. The F80 is a great piece of kit.
Pro or Amateur this is a great camera for all needs. It lets you take the photographs you want to take and not be disappointed. There is easy userbility for the amateur and control for the professional who demands it. There is no point spending more on this thinking you might get a better camera. Although brands like Canon have come a long way in the last few years, they still can't match this.
Great review there man full of info. and descriptive power , photography sure is wonderful,sounds good,nice one(-:
zoobremia 08.11.2005 16:23
Hi, well, seems to be the right one for me ... I need a camera which does everything automatically, I don't have a plan of all the options to use normally, so I still have no one at home. Unfortunately I don't have, because so there'll be a better picture of mine in here and I have more pictures in choice ... Well, the picture of me was made by a girl from ciao.de during a ciao-community meeting in Bremen ... Anyway, this is a great review, just one thing missing, but Your review forces me to have a look to buy it asap, so the sense of Your review has become a good one (without this information) ... It works, when spending some time with writing them ... Best regards, Sven (Zoobremia, maybe soon Fotobremia, lol)