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CNET First Look
Nikon's 30x megazoom on the cheap, the Coolpix L820For those who value a long zoom lens, AA batteries, and saving a few bucks, the L820 might be the point-and-shoot for you.
Hey, there. I'm Josh Goldman and this is a quick look at Nikon's budget-friendly megazoom, the Coolpix L820. Now, for its street price of less than $200, you get some very nice specs including a 16-megapixel BSI CMOS sensor for better low-light images, faster performance and full HD and slow-motion movie capture; a high-res 3-inch LCD; and of course, the main feature, the 30x zoom lens that goes from an ultra wide-angle 22.5 mm to 675 mm. That is quite the range for the money and you get two ways to control it, the usual zoom ring on the front and another on the barrel. Now, you can find smaller cameras with similar or more range, but the bigger body allows for steadier control and AA batteries which is a rarity these days. Also, this camera is pretty much for auto shooting only. So, if you're looking for manual controls, this isn't your camera. What it also doesn't have is an electronic viewfinder, so you have to rely on the LCD for framing your shots which isn't easy in bright conditions. Shooting performance is, overall, good for this class of camera, but the autofocus definitely needs more time when the lens is extended or in low light or indoors. So, it's not the best choice for fast-moving kids and pets. Low-light photo quality, while not great, is better than other budget megazooms, but really, this camera shines outdoors and good lighting. So, use it there and you'll get some very nice pictures and movies. I'm Josh Goldman and that's the Nikon Coolpix L820.