Topic Author
Posts: 94
Joined: Fri Sep 07, 2001 10:02 pm

Nikon CoolPix Question...

Sun Mar 03, 2002 1:15 am

I'm currently into the decision which digital camera to buy.

The camera should suit all-day, aviation spotting and also holiday needs. Minimum 3,3 MegaPixel to get good 20x30cm prints. Minimum reachable zoom should be around 250mm to get some details. Compact Flash cards as memory system, SM is limited to 128megs and MS and SD are much to expensive. Price of cam should be as low as possible, that's clear  Smile

Current selection is:

 Big thumbs up Nikon CoolPix 885 + 2x/3x tele converter (maybe EagleEye SuperZoom)

Really small, good to take along, lots of manual functions, good makro, but has a little problem of too much red in scenes with artifical light. Only 114mm without converters. Kind of a "girl's cam" style.

About 530 Euro, 2/3/5x Converters 125/250/250 Euro.

 Big thumbs up Nikon CoolPix 995 + 2x/3x Teleconverter (maybe EagleEye SuperZoom)

Most manual functions, no real weaks. Autofocus needs much light. Costs more than the 885, better colors and 153mm maximum tele. Much more heavier and bigger than the 885.

About 670 Euro, 2/3/5x Converters 125/250/250 Euro.

 Big thumbs up Minolta Dimage 5 as is.

Great quality, many professional functions, but very power-hungry. Big block to carry around. Slow autofocus. No way to get more tele than 250mm, maybe there are 3rd party converters available?!?

About 640 Euro, a really good price for that monster.

 Big thumbs up Fujifilm FinePix S602 Zoom + 1.5 Teleconverter

Features 315mm max. tele zoom with the converter and if you look at both the FinePix 6900 Zoom ( and the changes Fuji will make to it to get the S602, it should have the best quality of all four cameras with nearly all weaks eliminated. Start of production around may.

Will cost about 900 Euro and about 130 for the 1.5x converter.

I'm now concentrating on the Nikon section, since the Minolta is kind of too big and too heavy to suit as an all-day-cam and I just don't have the money for 2 cams.
The Fuji will be too expensive, too, I think.

Main thing I do not really like with the Nikons are their really small lens systems and the very high apertures in tele mode. Yes, I did read (quite) every review available about that cams and even the picture results with 5x converter were just fine and better than I ever expected.

But what about sunset shooting? Is it possible to take hand shots with a cam with an 5.1 aperture at tele and added 2x converter?

The S602 features an 2.8-3.1 aperture, but the prize...

The separate opical view finders aren't very suitable to use with teleconverters, too...

Another thing, the 995 with 2x tele converter is about 800 Euro, thats much more than the Minolta...

I just can't decide...


Perhaps some users of one of the Nikons could say some words to my critic points?!? Peter Unmuth?

Thanks very much!!!

Posts: 5
Joined: Mon Jan 29, 2001 1:54 pm

RE: Nikon CoolPix Question...

Mon Mar 04, 2002 12:18 am

Hi Alex,

I am a Nikon 880 user with a 2X teleconverter. The 880 is virtually the same as the 885. I don’t do a lot of aviation photography so it is fine for me. It is great for family and macro shots and if I want to go out to the airport it is good for some fun. The camera is somewhat limiting for aviation photography. If I get a bit more serious I will get a new camera. Out of the 4 cameras you have listed I would pick the 995. The 885 is nice but it only has 2 F-stops 2.8 and 4.9. It is great for trips and the occasional aviation photo. The Minolta is a nice camera but it is slow and bulky. The Fuji isn’t bad but it runs on a AA system. I sell cameras here in the states and I can tell you that you want to stay away form cameras that use a AA battery system. You can suck them dry so fast it will make your head spin even if they are rechargeable. Instead of buying AA’s for the rest of my natural born life I would much rather spend the money on a spare rechargeable bat for the 995. Any company that uses a AA system in a camera like the Fuji should have their head checked. The 995 is a great camera for the price. They have taken the 990 and updated it fixing minor errors and adding a rechargeable battery system (included with the camera). It is also a much faster camera than the other three. I would tell you more but it sounds like you have done some heavy reading on these cameras. 995 all the way! Hopefully Peter Unmuth will chime in and comment. Put my name in the search engine if you want to see some 880 shots (March 11, 2001 to present) Also check this site for camera prices if you have not done so already.

Christian Mogensen
Posts: 3119
Joined: Thu Aug 24, 2000 9:31 pm

RE: Nikon CoolPix Question...

Mon Mar 04, 2002 5:37 am

Did I hear my name  Smile)
All my pictures prior to Sep the 14th 2001 where taken with the Nikon Coolpix 990. Most of them with the 3* Teleconverter attached.
The main issue on this camera on aviation photography is that you have to use the screen to follow the object when any kiond of converter is attached to the lens because the viewfinder is of no use then. It is obstrucred by the attached converter.
At least for me it was very tough to get sharp action shots with shutter speeds lower than 1/500 of a second.
What i really liked on this cam was the toggle in the body of the camera which was very useful when making photos in the dark without having a tripod. You can place the cam on a steeady ground and point the lense towards the object of interest.
About the converters: Dont go for third party products. They are really bull$$it. Go for the original ones. I tried both and the difference is worth the price.
Topic Author
Posts: 94
Joined: Fri Sep 07, 2001 10:02 pm

RE: Nikon CoolPix Question...

Thu Mar 07, 2002 6:31 am

Thanks for your comments, guys!

Until now, I finally made a conclusion of all things which seem to be important to me.

The Minolta is just too big and heavy and a second 100 grams battery set is needed, too.

The Fuji will be too expensive for me, and the 885 is a bit limitting in terms of features (no swivel, 2 aperture settings, less "tele") and costs only 100 Euros less than the 995.

I've read (even) more reviews and checked for the user reviews at and I know, they aren't _that_ objektive, but it seems that in fact _nobody_ is really dissappointed with the Nikon 995.

The 885 only did an average job, and the Minolta is fine, but heavy and big.

It will ever, ever, ever turn out the same...

So I headed for the 995.

The resolution should be enough for my needs, and I could hand over the cam to a friend in about two years and get one with 10MP and Foveon CCD.

I've found a (indeed very strange) person who is selling his 995 for size reasons and I'll get it on Monday.

Should be 3 months old, 21months guarantee left, 1 month money-back-service for about 75% of the lowest findable web shop price. Thats 500 Euros including P & P.

I hope it will be a good deal.

Ok, i'm in a hurry. Have to search for the tele lens, a bag, some filters, some bigger CF cards, and even more...  Smile



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