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★★★★☆

“I have had this Nikon N80 35mm SLR Camera for about a...”

Written on: 08/06/2004 by adambukaty (2 reviews written)

Good Points
Fast autofocus. good feature set. DOF preview is key, and the shutter slap is practically nonexistent.

the n80 has a traditional socket for cable release!!! this is really a great feature, albeit very simple, but one that the f100 and f5 lack. for those of us that shoot large format as well, this is a comforting feature.

build is good enough for most enthusiasts (outside of monsoon coutries).

the n80 is cheap enough, so that if you destroy yours on safari, you probably have the means to replace it.

an n80 body and a good fast lens are still something around half the price of an f100 body alone.

shopping around, i paid about 320 euros for the body, 50mm 1.8 nikkor, and MB-16 pack ALL BRAND NEW! you can't beat that value in the nikon lineup.

Bad Points
Sometimes the autofocus will hunt around for it's subject, making it sometimes difficult to get a spur of the moment shot.

the autofocus point pad on the back door of the camera is in an awkward place, and your nose can be in constant contact with it.

with the MB-16 pack, you will most likely have to upgrade to a larger camera bag, because this makes it in a lot of cases impossible to store it "nose down" in a 1-camera bag. ...incidental cost factor; kind of like when you buy a new lens, and you need to buy a top quality filter to place on it for protection, this makes that actual price of the lens about 75 dollars more.

General Comments
I have had this Nikon N80 35mm SLR Camera for about a week now, and it is a great leap up from the entry level nikons. Some consider this entry level, but this camera really has too many features for someone who is just starting out in photography - unless you are enrolling in a class that will specifically show you how to use a nikon autofocus camera. The n80 isn't rocket science, but when you're learning stops and lighting principles, filters and shutter speeds for the first time, a simpler camera would make all of these topics more apparent. if this is going to be your first camera, i would say to get a used FM and 50mm prime or a second hand f55 (they're cheap, but good intros into the world of nikon autofocus) instead. also, if you are going to be shooting in particularly rainy, sandy, slimy, etc. conditions, then i would suggest you get an equivalent canon instead (EOS), because they are more weather sealed. build quality on the n80 lacks a little if you do more than city shooting.



That aside, i've been long overdue for this camera - being a student, you long for things long before you get them, which means you're well read on it before it arrives - and it fits seamlessly into how i shoot. good room for growth with this camera, and with the 50mm 1.8 nikkor, this is a great camera to tote around. auto focus is lightning fast (this is a relative term if you've also played around with the f100 or f5, which are dead-on and insane fast), and the shutter is smooth and quiet. feels like much more of a precision machine than the lower nikions.



basic point here: i really like this camera, and no camera system is perfect. if you want a top notch auto focus and aren't going to be taking this to kosovo on assignment or to thailand during monsoon season (i.e., you're not someone who will be shooting in extreme conditions, la national geographic photographers), this has everything that a serious enthusiast needs, and at less than half the cost of an f100. it's an f100-lite.

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