Nikon Coolpix P100

Last updated (11 January’11):
– Review & Sample Photos @ CameraLabs

Nikon Coolpix P100 is a 10.3 Megapixels ultrazoom camera features 26x optical zoom (equivalent to: 26-678mm), New backside illumination CMOS sensor, 5-way VR Image Stabilization System, New Full HD movie with stereo sound and HDMI output, Smart Portrait System, Subject Tracking, and a 3.0-inch vari-angle high resolution HVGA (460,000-dot) Clear Color Display.

Overall Rating: ★★★½☆ | Latest Price Info

Expert Reviews

Nikon Coolpix P100 Reviews

CameraLabs reviews the Nikon Coolpix P100 and writes;
“there’s not much to differentiate between the 160 ISO setting on the COOLPIX P100 and the 80 and 100 ISO settings on the PowerShot SX30 IS. We think the COOLPIX looks better at 200 and 400 ISO though, before the PowerShot pulls it back to neck and neck at the 800 and 1600 ISO settings. “
Rating: ★★★☆☆

ITReviews reviews the Nikon Coolpix P100 and writes;
“The P100 is unlikely to appeal to serious photographers, as its picture quality isn’t top of the class – but its range of shooting options, plus the addition of Full HD movies and a massive zoom will attract the compact crowd demanding more.”
Rating: ★★★☆☆ reviews the Nikon Coolpix P100 and writes;
“The Nikon Coolpix P100 is up against plenty of stiff competition. I like the features it has, especially the fast burst mode, but I felt picture quality suffered a bit by comparison to other cameras in this category. “
Rating: ★★★☆☆

PCWorld reviews the Nikon Coolpix P100 and writes;
“The powerful P100 does everything easily, thanks to its 26X zoom lens, versatile features, and intuitive controls. Exposure quality and color accuracy are superb, but its photos suffer from distortion and lack of sharpness.”
Rating: ★★★☆☆

TechTree reviews the Nikon Coolpix P100 and writes;
” The image quality is quite good, and so is the video quality, but for a camera in the price of Rs.23,000, we expect a lot more… with minor image quality flaws, the Nikon CoolPix P100 is still a lot better than ordinary point-and-shoot cameras with plenty of features such as auto bracketing for an enthusiast to keep experimenting with.”
Rating: ★★★★☆

T3 reviews the Nikon Coolpix P100 and writes;
” As we’d expected from Nikon, colour reproduction leans toward the naturalistic and there’s a tendency to underexpose to preserve highlight detail. Edge to edge sharpness is well maintained, if there’s inevitably slight barrel distortion at widest 26mm setting. Pictures aren’t quite as sharp as on the Fuji HS10 either.”
Rating: ★★★★☆

TrustedReviews reviews the Nikon Coolpix P100 and writes;
” The Nikon P100 doesn’t quite deliver on the promises of the specs, but at least manages to produce some sharp images. The colour is the main letdown, as even when altered under manual controls it appears unrealistic. “
Rating: ★★★½☆

DCI reviews the Nikon Coolpix P100 and writes;
” For the money, the feature set looks pretty good. However, our lab tests revealed flaws in color accuracy and particularly in image resolution that gave us second thoughts about recommending the P100.”
Rating: ★★★★☆

ImagingResource reviews the Nikon Coolpix P100 and writes;
” In summary, the Nikon Coolpix P100 does fairly well for a 10-megapixel camera, outputting good quality images capable of printing at reasonable sizes from each ISO. There was once a time not too long ago when ISO 3,200 shots were a noisy mess, but now you can output a decent quality 4×6 from some pretty dim places, and with a 26x zoom. “
Rating: ★★★★☆

RegHardware reviews the Nikon Coolpix P100 and writes;
” The P100 feels pretty lightweight, and can be conceivably kept in the bag that someone else carries, or a large overcoat pocket, though you may attract the wrong crowd. It is just a little too big to be something you don’t notice you have.”
Rating: ★★★★☆

InfoSync reviews the Nikon Coolpix P100 and writes;
” Overall, this camera is designed for those who want to step up from a point-and-shoot and also want all the bells and whistles. The Nikon Coolpix P100 is chock full of power, but some of that power needs to be refined within the coming generations of Coolpix Super Zooms. “

Rating: N/A

DCRP reviews the Nikon Coolpix P100 and writes;
“As a point-and-shoot, small print camera/camcorder, the Coolpix P100 is good, but not great. As an enthusiast camera, it disappoints, mainly due to its mediocre photo quality, lack of RAW support, and menu-centric user interface. While the final decision on the Coolpix P100 falls to you, I personally would consider something else.”
Rating: N/A

Adorama reviews the Nikon Coolpix P100 and writes;
“If you are stepping up from a smaller compact with a limited zoom range and would be satisfied with 4×6-inch prints (and perhaps the occasional 8×10), and shoot a lot of video, I think this would be a very good camera for you “
Rating: N/A

PhotographyBlog reviews the Nikon Coolpix P100 and writes;
” The P100 will never turn out DSLR-quality photos, but it’s a lot more portable and convenient than an SLR with a bunch of lenses. It also has some excellent movie options for those who like to shoot videos as well as stills, making it an ideal travel companion.”
Rating: ★★★★☆

NeutralDay reviews the Nikon Coolpix P100 and writes;
“our biggest problem with the P100 is the image quality. With the plethora of features and smart auto modes and the emphasis on the backlit sensor, we were expecting a little more. That being said, we still like the P100. The different scene modes cover a vast array of scenarios, the video was really entertaining, and we’re sure that those looking to expand their creativity without too much of an emphasis on image quality will be pleased. “
Rating: N/A

PhotographyBay reviews the Nikon Coolpix P100 and writes;
“The unfortunate part of the P100 assessment is that the image quality isn’t as good as I had anticipated. When I previously looked the P100 at the time it was announced, I had high hopes for its image quality based on the the preliminary results and the fact that it had a backlit illuminated CMOS sensor.”
Rating: N/A

Review Video by TigerDirect;

Photoxels reviews the Nikon Coolpix P100 and writes;
“noise at ISO 160 and 200 is under control. The smoothening effect of noise reduction starts to be visible at ISO 400, resulting in a slight loss of detail, but the image is very usable up to ISO 800. At ISO 1600 and 3200, the presence of noise is clearly visible at full image size and with increasing loss of image detail.”
Rating: N/A

NeoCamera reviews the Nikon Coolpix P100 and writes;
“Operating performance of the Nikon Coolpix P100 is good. The camera is generally responsive, with good startup, shutdown and zoom speeds. Focusing is on the slow side, taking about 1s for to lock under most conditions.”
Rating: ★★★★☆

DCR reviews the Nikon Coolpix P100 and writes;
“I was hoping for improved ISO noise performance with the P100 versus the P90, and the P100 certainly delivered. ISO 160 and 200 are clean and hard to tell apart. There’s a bit of noise creeping in at 400 and a bit more at 800, but both are still not bad. “
Rating: N/A

Pocket-Lint reviews the Nikon Coolpix P100 and writes;
“Overall the Nikon Coolpix P100 is a remarkable little camera capable of some superb results across its range of sensitivity settings, and is a camera that should be very high on your list if you want a compact shoot-anything camera in a svelte, easy to use package.”
Rating: ★★★★½

InfoSync reviews the Nikon Coolpix P100 and writes;
“The P100 offers an amazing amount of features and is a very enjoyable camera to use. You can do a lot with it and it should appeal to the gadget fan who is more into specification than pixel-peeping.”

Rating: N/A

ePhotozine reviews the Nikon Coolpix P100 and writes;
“The P100 offers an amazing amount of features and is a very enjoyable camera to use. You can do a lot with it and it should appeal to the gadget fan who is more into specification than pixel-peeping.”
Rating: ★★★☆☆

CNET reviews the Nikon Coolpix P100 and writes;
“The good: Solid design; overflowing with photo, movie features; very fast shooting performance for its class. The bad: Photo, video quality is weakest part of the package. The bottom line: There’s a lot to like about the Nikon Coolpix P100, but you’ll need to keep your photo quality expectations in check to really enjoy it.”

Rating: ★★★½☆

User Opinions

Nikon Coolpix P100 User Reviews

Excellent product. Great improvement over the P90 | Rating: ★★★★☆
“…I love the facial recognition mode for up to 12 faces and the fact that the shutter releases when every one smiles. The in camera photo editing software is decent the software for your computer is better. I have found only one flaw the battery does not last but for about 300 pictures less with the flash so it is a good idea to buy extras but they are cheap and easy to find on e-bay also it does not come with an external battery charger but again you can find it cheap. In conclusion I LOVE THIS CAMERA!! ” – Robert

Remarkable | Rating: ★★★★★
“…I haven’t discovered a con yet unless it is the learning curve, especially if you are a beginner. But even that is minimal – just do what you can do and learn the rest as you go. The sensor and electronics are exceptional. So far, can’t say enough good things. And the early delivery was the icing on the cake. Well done!! ” – Robert

Excellent Camera | Rating: ★★★★★
“…This camera does a good job of filling the zone between a full blown DSLR with lots of lenses and a gigantic/heavy camera bag, and a point and shoot that will fit in your front pocket. Despite all of the blah-blah from the naysayers, I am in absolute awe of this little camera. My only complaint is that compared with the P80, the P100 has put on a good bit of weight. Still manageable though. I guess the additional weight mostly comes from all the glass needed for that incredible 26x zoom. ” – Paul

More user opinions | Write your opinion


Nikon Coolpix P100 User Manual (PDF)

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– Download Nikon Coolpix P100 User Manual (PDF – 8.8MB )


Nikon Coolpix P100 Features

EXPEED digital imaging technology
Nikon’s smarter approach to digital imaging technology. From image capture to processing, Nikon’s comprehensive EXPEED digital imaging concept encompasses the entire picture-taking operation. EXPEED is much more than a processing engine; it is a revolution in digital photography.

Backside illumination CMOS sensor for advanced performance
The Coolpix P100 enables images of exceptional quality even when shooting in night scenes or in dark indoor situations. Thanks to the new backside illumination CMOS sensor, which increases the amount of light that each pixel receives, resulting in improved sensitivity and noise reduction.

The advanced performance of the new CMOS image sensor brings in-camera Backlit Scene HDR (High Dynamic Range) imaging to the Coolpix P100. HDR merges some images of the same scene to create an image with a range of tonal detail that could not be captured in a single photo. Night Landscape mode also benefits from a function that combines a series of consecutive shots taken at a fast shutter speed into a single, clearer image when taking handheld shots at night. Further extending its potential as a versatile photographic tool, the Coolpix P100 features high-speed shooting. This capability allows users to shoot consecutive images in maximum size 3648 x 2736 (10M) at a rapid 10-fps (approx.). Other high-speed options include Sport Continuous Mode (120-fps) and Pre-shooting Cache.

3-inch vari-angle 460k-dot TFT LCD featuring Nikon’s Clear Color Display and electronic viewfinder
In addition to its 3-inch high-resolution vari-angle LCD featuring Clear Color Display with anti-reflection coating, the Coolpix P100 features the versatility of an electronic viewfinder that further enhances compositional freedom and accuracy under all lighting conditions. The vibrant 3.0-inch 460k-dot VGA display offers twice the clarity and detail of standard cameras for stunning image reproduction.

High-Definition movie recording
Entertain audiences with movies that capture the entire impact of the scene with Full HD. The Coolpix P100 can shoot up to 2 hours* of Full HD movies (1080p) with stereo sound with its conveniently positioned Movie-record button. Both the camera’s optical zoom and autofocus functions continue to be available while filming. A stereo microphone optimally mounted on top of the camera accurately captures audio. The HS movie function provides the added benefit of recording movies that can be played back in slow motion or fast motion.
*Recording stops automatically after 29 minutes. This figure is based on in-house testing standards and stated for recording at 25°C with a fully charged EN-EL5 battery. Actual results may vary greatly depending on factors that include differences in ambient temperature, and the amount of zoom and autofocus operations used.

Five advanced image stabilizing features* help ensure sharper results
Compensating for the effects of camera shake to realize sharper results and contribute to a more reassuring shooting experience, Image sensor shift and Electronic VR (Vibration Reduction) frees you to enjoy capturing special moments without worrying about slight hand movements. High ISO 3200 capability at any image size up to its maximum of 3648 x 2736 pixels allows faster shutter speeds when shooting in low light or capturing fast-moving subjects. Motion Detection automatically controls shutter speed and the ISO setting to compensate for subject movement as well as camera shake. And, Nikon’s original BSS (Best Shot Selector) function automatically shoots a series of sequential frames and saves the one with the sharpest focus.
* The camera selects and uses only the features required to optimize each image.

Nikon’s Smart Portrait System with Skin Softening
As part of Nikon’s Smart Portrait System, a series of advanced functions help produce consistently great portraits. The Skin Softening function ensures smooth skin tone on the face of subjects by leveraging built-in face-detection technology. Automatically detecting as many as 12 faces in the shot, Face-priority AF helps produce satisfying portraits by adjusting focus and exposure. Smile Timer helps to faithfully record precious moments by automatically releasing the shutter when the subject smiles. Blink Warning alerts the photographer when it suspects that a subject has blinked, while the Blink Proof function shoots five sequential frames, then saves the one in which the subject’s eyes are wide open. In-Camera Red-Eye Fix Red-Eye Fix automatically corrects perceived red-eye effect before saving the image to memory.

Four exposure modes P, S, A and M
The Mode Dial provides quick access to the rich creative possibilities offered by advanced Programmed Auto [P], Shutter-priority Auto [S], Aperture-priority Auto [A], and Manual [M] exposure modes.

Innovative Active D-Lighting function
Enabled during shooting, Active D-Lighting is a unique technology that adds light and detail where necessary while leaving correctly exposed areas untouched to produce significantly improved images with a more natural-looking finish.

Nikon Coolpix P100 Other Features

* 17 scene modes for optimized shooting in various settings
* Scene Auto Selector
* Subject Tracking
* Optimize image (including monochrome filter effect)
* Active Zoom
* 1:1 size format
* Distortion Control
* Quick Retouch
* Approx. 43 MB of internal memory
* USB charging via Charging AC Adapter EH-68P/EH-68P (AR) or PC
* HDMI connectivity

What’s in the Box

* EN-EL5 Rechargeable Li-ion Battery
* EH-68P AC Adapter/Charger
* UC-E6 USB Cable
* EG-CP14 Audio Video Cable
* AN-CP21 Strap
* Coolpix Software Suite CD-ROM

60 Responses to “Nikon Coolpix P100”

  1. Budi says:

    I really love Nikon P100. In my first test last night after it arrived, I was blown away by the difference. Close shots of a ladybug on the orange tree v. zooming in on lamp posts across the street – everything was clear. I took a photo of my old car and it looked like a dealership photo. As an aside, I have no idea how the camera made the dirty car clean. I think I’ve made a right decision when I bought Nikon P100.

  2. Kuma says:

    Can I use a slave flash on this Camera.

  3. Ash Maxwell says:

    Nikon camera is absolutely remarkable. P100 is proving to be the killer power zoom camera. Its capabilities is high especially on the CMOS lens which is found on DSLR. Good buy.

  4. CreativeCam says:

    I bought the P100 last week and I must say that it’s an all-in-one wonder. I’ve made some sample images that you can find on my website ». Today I’m going to shoot some videofootage and test the slomo feature also.

  5. Nikon Coolpix P100 says:

    This is a nice article and a nice blog !

  6. Mike says:

    This camera will work for 80% of your shotmaking. For the other 20% a DSLR is the answer if you don’t mind the bulkiness and extra expense of the 3-4 lenses it would take to replicate the focal length of the P100. An excellent value for 80% of you who are interested.

  7. Vishal says:


    I am planning to buy a point to shoot camera and was looking @ reviews for Nikon P100. All the reviewers are complaining about its image quality but I found it really good by looking at snaps on your site(are they really taken by P100..? this question pop up in my mind).

    Then why are all those people blaming P100..?

    I like the over all product and its offering @ affordable price and its between DSLR and Normal point to shoot camera.

    So will you recommend it..?


  8. CreativeCam says:

    Hey Vishal,

    They are really taken with the P100. I did a little bit of color correction but that was it. I still recommend the camera for your normal every day life photography. When you’re planning to make professional photographs/video’s and you want a really shallow depth of field, I would recommend to buy a DSLR with prime lenses.


  9. Vishal says:

    Hello Marcin

    Thanks a lot for taking time for giving me a valuable reply.


  10. Uma Venkatraman says:

    I bought this camera and have spent the weekend feeling extremely depressed because of the many negative comments about image quality. Your pictures look great, Marcin, so can you explain what colour correction you did and how can I do the same?

  11. Uma Venkatraman says:

    I bought this camera and spent the weekend feeling extremely depressed because of all the negative comments about image quality. The pictures on the website look fantastic, so what colour correction has been done and how can I do the same?


  12. CreativeCam says:

    Hey Uma,

    Don’t get depressed and don’t believe everything that people say. Whether you’ve bought a good or a bad camera is something you must find out for yourself. The color correction on my photo’s on my website http://www.creativecam.nlis done primarily with Adobe Lightroom.

    Good Luck,


  13. Uma Venkatraman says:

    Thanks Marcin,

    I have been taking pictures, and so far they seem to be quite okay, not nearly as bad as many reviews have mentioned, at least to my untutored eye. I still have hope that it won’t turn out to be a bad buy.


  14. Shashank says:

    Does Nikon p100 has Sweep panorama, and what is better choice? Sony HX1 or P100

  15. Shashank says:

    Does Nikon has Sweep panorama feature? Which would be better choice between Sony HX 1 andNIkon p100?

  16. Sayan Sengupta says:

    Hi folks!
    I bought my P100 two days back, after testing my friend’s for some time. The camera does really well, whatever test you put it to. What I particularly like are the manual focus and the amazing low light/night time prowess of the camera. Will be putting up my pics soon.
    @ Shashank, yes it has sweep panorama. You have to take the pics individually and use the pc suite to finally work out your panorama photograph.


  17. Sayan Sengupta says:

    Hi Junta!
    Here are the the pics in my picasa album. Do put in your comments!


  18. SMiller says:

    I received the Nikon P100 for my birthday in mid March. It is the first Nikon camera I have ever owned. In the 5 months I have owned the P100, it has been in Nikon service for 2 OF THOSE MONTHS. Each time Nikon had my camera for repairs, they replaced a whole list of parts and both times I received the camera back in far worse condition. The more they work on it and replace parts the worse it gets. And for some reason they keep sending it back to me with more and more problems and issues. Unbelievable. After spending another 2 hours on the phone with Nikon Tech Support, I was told the camera had to be sent back again. So, for the THIRD TIME, I sent the camera to them. I was told they would let me know if they decide to replace it or try to fix it again. Seriously. My response to this statement was that if they COULD fix it then they WOULD have. It wasn’t fair to ask me to wait while they tried to fix it for the THIRD TIME. They need to just replace it with a new camera. In the meantime, I was asked to send a few of the pictures for Nikon to analyze. The response I received from a Nikon supervisor said that the pictures I sent were bad because of the settings used and the composition. For the glare problem, he instructed me NOT to face toward the sun when taking pictures. He also suggested a setting to use for indoor low light conditions and asked me to try that and let him know how it works. How insulting! Wow. Nikon is blaming me for all the picture and camera problems and not taking any responsibility for the fact that in the 8 weeks they have had my camera for repairs they were never able to fix it – and, in fact, made it worse and still sent it back to me like there was no problem. And I can’t very well try a different setting on a camera that I do not have – and this Nikon supervisor knew that the camera had been sent back. When is Nikon going to take responsibility for their product and stand behind it? They need to accept the fact that I just happened to get the one bad apple in the bunch. I’ve already gone 8 weeks (and counting) without the use of my camera. They’ve already had 2 chances to fix it and they haven’t. They need to replace it with a new camera before the last shred of respect – and confidence – I have for Nikon is gone. This isn’t exactly how I thought my first experience with a Nikon camera would turn out. Not a fan of the camera, Nikon, tech support, or their service department now.

  19. Ravi Datey says:

    After researching all the camera models in the range of 20000 I finally decided to get Nikon p 100 for my self. I previously have a Nikon FM10 SLR film camera.
    This P 100 is very responsive and captures great photographs If you want it more better then you have to enhance it by using picture project software. Its slow motion movie feature is quite remarkable

  20. anna says:

    i bought this camera… and i have one question, the think is.. the camera have 10 mb.. and one friend have a prfessional nikon of 10 mb too, but when i take pictures with my p100 and compares with her pictures.. mines looks fuzzy,for example i have a digital olympus camera (7mb) and take best pictures of the coolpix p100 -.- somebody know why? because all the pictures I take looks fuzzy in the way of the people and her factions don’t look good… look some distorsioned… is just me? or that’s happen for someone else? and if someebody can tell me how i can edit it or fix the problem i’ll really be very grateful.. thank youuu guys 😀

  21. Kathy says:

    I purchased the P100 primarily for concert photos, as most venues will not allow cameras with detachable lenses. I cannot find a mode that stops movement with the low-light, back-lit situations of concerts. My shots have been disappointingly blurred. Is it possible to get good concerts shots with this camera?

    Thank you.

  22. Britt says:

    I bought this camera for the same reason, and I have gotten some pretty amazing shots. I saw The Script and shot images with this camera and got some nice ones on auto with the flash. The biggest problem comes if the subject is moving to fast or two often. But this can be the case with any camera. The macro setting works pretty well also. Now if only I could get the audio on the HD recording to behave nicely.

  23. Kathy says:

    I went back to the store where I purchased the camera and they showed me which MANUAL settings to use. Worked 100% better than two previous outings. I got decent and good shots! I have the latest P100 model, which the store clerk said has many more features. It’s kind of trial and error. I’m happy with it now! They also suggested the “fireworks” setting, which I did not try, as I was having such good luck with the others.

  24. Mayuresh says:


    I want to go for this cam. I have loved it at first go.
    Is it recommended? What wud u suggest.
    I am looking for pictures to be clear when i view them on my system. Is this the correct choice ? Why can i c many negative comments on this cam on some websites?


  25. Ric says:

    I’ve now spent over 2 years with a Nikon P80. This camera was my 5th Nikon as I spent many years shooting for a living. I dropped out after too many years of 80 hour weeks. I also have a little 5 MP Olympus that was my first foray into digital.

    Ok, why the purchase of a P100 earlier today? I’ve been very happy and frustrated by the P80. I’ve produced many great, and marketable, images with my trusty little PHD (Push Here, Dummy) P80. People look at my shots and ask how I did that…

    I spent years working Nikons, Hasselblads, Mamiyas and a number of other small and medium format cameras. I even once splurged for a Leica R4.

    I like Nikon.

    The metering system is very predictable. The glass is among the best. The camera’s functions fall to hand and even though I’ve burned out shutters, I know that I won’t be left with a dead camera when I need it. I always get a shot!

    Now, digital is really the only way to shoot. I’m behind the times in making the transition. But, the feel of the old Nikon’s is still there.

    I won’t receive my P100 until the store can get new stock. I’m not worried. I still have the P80 for the meantime. I’ll be moving into a D7000 with a full range of good lenses within a few months, but I won’t make the mistake of comparing a $7K kit with a camera that only cost a few hundred dollars. I’ll still be able to produce images that will sell with the P100. I need it to catch shots that would require a lot more planning, grunt-work and setup.

    My experience with the P80 got me back into shooting for $. It is that good. The P100 should be better.

    I spent many years living by the tenet “F8 and BE THERE!” It works. Get a decent camera and work your feet. Take lots of shots and learn how the darn process works. Too many want a perfect shot every time they pull out a $300 camera. They have no idea that it takes learning, dedication, passion and a lot of failures to produce consistent shot quality.

    Sorry to be so long-winded, but I was taught that a camera is only a tool to capture an idea or a moment. Tools take time to learn how to use. Take the time. Learn the trade. You’ll be a better person for it.

    So, yes, I bought a P100 and I’m looking forward to what we’ll capture together. There are other cameras. This one will work for me.

    Best of the Season…

  26. Sayan Sengupta says:

    Nice and inspiring write-up Ric! Liked the work your feet part most!

  27. Ric says:

    Hey Sayan…
    Thank you for the kind comment. May the next year be kind to you!

    I have spent some 17 years making my living with cameras. That was a number of years ago. I’ve worked studios, field and locations. I’ve actually shot a few kings and been paid for it, legally. I’ve taught a number of people some of the techniques and passions I’ve learned and evolved. One of the most satisfying experiences I’ve had was to teach a young girl about the practical aspects of photography. She had/has an eye for composition and situational advantage like few I’ve seen. She also shot with an old Kodak 126 camera.

    I digress…

    I still don’t have my P100. I did receive notice that it shipped on Xmas Eve, so I’ll have it soon. I’m looking forward to the many improvements over the P80 and will be using the HD video nearly upon receiving it.

    I’ll admit that the Coolpix P80/90/100 series isn’t the sharpest image-producing line available. But, it does offer a huge zoom range. There is a serious trade-off to achieve anything with an f2.8 max aperture and a 26X zoom range. I’ve chosen to go for the camera because I do a lot of fauna shots that require me to be some distance from my subjects. I generally stay within the optical zoom, but have had good results even into the digital range. I’m not averse to running an image through Photoshop to balance color, crop or whatever is needed to pull the best image. Most people won’t have this ability, but I’ll recommend that those who have a strong desire to really learn digital photography seriously look at software that will give them good control of their images. I know… more steps and more expense.

    Keep in mind that just about every professional shot you’ll see has been “touched up” with some software. This should NOT apply to news/editorial shots, but it is a reality for finer shooting in other situations. I spent a bit of time last evening doing a family portrait with the P80. 9 people, a small room and pretty much a nightmare for any portraitist. I racked the lens out to about 50mm (35mm film camera), added light with some incandescent lamps and proceeded to quell a few minor grievances from the subjects. In all, it turned out a good usable image to work with. The on camera flash was sufficient to light the room. A tripod and self-timer got me into the shot, too. I’m running it through Photoshop and expect a nice family portrait that will pump up to 11X14″.

    I even expect a bit better from the P100. Time will tell, but I do have expectations that I don’t think will be dashed.

    Ok, back to the P100. I bought one to have as a “grab-cam” that will produce good images and offer a huge zoom range. If I had to choose just one camera to carry, this would probably be it. I have high standards, but I also know what is needed to produce a camera with the abilities of the P100. I think that Nikon did an amazing job.

    By the way, I got a deal on mine that I haven’t seen before or since. That helped, a bit, with my decision. It was so cheap that I withheld buying a D90 and small lens range until I can afford more serious equipment. I’ll be dropping some $7 – 10K on camera equipment in the next few months, but I’ll have a small reliable and capable camera in the P100. It won’t be the backup cam, but it will be there for when I need a wide-angle to really long zoom without assembling the more serious bodies and lenses out of the backpack. I won’t make the mistake of expecting the results from all of the cameras to be equal, but the both P80 and P100 will definitely have their place within a professional kit. Uh, my wife will carry the P80 and I’ll have the P100. After all, I have the experience and we will have to eat! We’ll see where this ends up…

    I recommend the P100, based on my experiences. I’ve played with a P100. I’ve read about it. It isn’t the world’s best camera. It was never meant to be. It does what it was designed for and it does it quite well. Spend more if you want more. It is a serious camera that deserves serious learning.

    Oh, yeah…

    If you don’t want to spend the money for a 26X zoom, use your feet.

    Best of the Season to all,


  28. Sayan Sengupta says:

    Hi Ric!

    It was really nice to read your reply. To be honest, I’ve started anything barely resembling photography since September of this year, when I got my P100. Prior to that I had to satisfy myself with the 3.2 MP cam of my cellphone and even earlier, a basic Konica point-n-shoot film camera.

    Call me old fashioned or weird, I don’t like touching up images with a software. I love the way a scene was captured on its own, and how light and shade played their part. And I believe if one is using a tool, he/she should be able to use it by nature, which cannot be achieved without working your feet, in your words!

    Here is a link to my Picasa album. It’d be really great if you put in some comments.

    Finally, wishing you an awesome year ahead!



  29. ashlee says:

    Hey I just got the same camera last night and im exactly like you how I bought the camera for concerts mainly!! So would you be able to explain what mode works best and what to do when at concerts taking photos ? Thanks

  30. Ric says:

    Hey, all…

    Sayan, I checked out your images. I think that you have the passion! I’m glad to see that you are not limiting yourself to full daylight and “regular” subjects. The joy of photography is to capture that which inspires us and then to share that inspiration with others. I like that you are shooting for the moon! You’re doing quite well.

    I used to run a large, custom, B&W and colour lab for my government. In working in the darkroom I learned the wide range of control possible during processing film and making prints. Now, given the digital age, I find myself expressing such control through software processing. I don’t often want to strongly influence the image, just bring out the image that I saw when I shot. This can be done through cropping, horizon leveling, colour correction and, actually, a great deal more. I mostly use software to resize, add a logo and other small touches to realize as close as I can to the original image. Editorial photography requires that the photographer not change the image in any substantial way. I like to see raw images without any additional control, but I am not averse to dropping a colour image to B&W. I am also learning High Dynamic Range (HDR) photography and software is required for this. It is only another tool in the tool shed.

    I am currently creating a website to share many of my images. It is, as I won’t receive my P100 until the end of the week, stocked with a few images from my P80. I have put in place a small, one page site while I learn the code needed to put up a site that will accommodate a few thousand images, mostly from the P80. Keep in mind that all images are reduced to 640×480 to minimize bandwidth, but I should very soon have larger images up for viewing. Yes, this is ultimately a commercial venture, but I will also, eventually, include a blog to discuss photography and travel. I have a goal with all of this. But one benefit, for me, will be to be able to share some of what I’ve learned over the years. I also want to share (and that goes both ways) beautiful images of the world, be it a concert, a sunrise, a temple or a portrait of an animal. I love this stuff and I can only hope to ignite another soul to learn and grow with the experience of recording our planet. There are lots of ideas/opinions about what is good and I only represent my own.

    My website, albeit only a taste until I can spend time to get the rest of the site up, is

    An awesome year lies ahead of us all,


  31. Hector says:

    Hi Kathy !
    I bought the P100 a couple of months ago. I think that I have the same throubles that you had at the beginning, and I am confuse about the best manual setting to be apply. Could you be so kind to share the tips that the seller
    Happy New Year from Buenos Aires !!!

  32. Sayan Sengupta says:

    Belated Happy New Year to all!

    Ric your words expressed precisely what I had in my mind! And thanks for the appreciation!

    Got the point regarding use of software. As I never had the dark room experience I couldn’t appreciate the ‘right’ use of software initially!(by ‘wrong’ use I’d mean something like the photoshopped images we find in circulation in mails! That was the impression I had initially about the use of software!)

    Went through your website. Awesome images, that’s all I can say! What does odinsdottir mean? Odin is the name of fire-god I guess!

    Talking of travel, have you been to India? If not, please do make sure you visit India! I’m sure you’ll have a whole new world to explore and record (I’m not talking about the poverty and the spiritual crap almost every Westerner wants to photograph).

    I guess your P100 has reached you by now. Please do share how you feel about it after trying your hands.


  33. Abhijit says:

    thanx guys….
    thank u very much for all these valuable reviews.

  34. Ric Hornsby says:

    I received my P100 last Monday. Initial feelings about it are all positive, except that it seems to be mildly overexposing images at default settings. I haven’t had much time with the camera yet, but I’ll be running some shots and adjusting performance to what I feel is the best base-line for a number of situations. I like that the camera is marginally larger than the P80 and I really like the speed at which it acquires focus. The upgraded view-screen is very nice, too. Given that this is 2 generations from my P80, I can see a lot of positive changes have happened. I purchased the camera on sale and for what it offers, it is a really inexpensive mid-range digital biased toward having a huge range of focal length.

    Odinsdottir refers to my wife’s lineage. Research has shown that she is 62 generations from Odin, the former king of Scandinavia. Odinsdottir is also the name of our cottage, which is situated near Gimli (New Iceland), in Manitoba, Canada, on the shore of Lake Winnipeg.

    When we travel, our focus will be on nature, environment and people. I like that so many places offer smiles from the heart. I can see poverty wherever I go, but happiness is what I look for.

    I’ll report my findings and feelings on the P100 as I become more familiar with it. So far, I think I’m in love! It won’t be the main camera, but it will get a lot of use.


    Ric Hornsby/

  35. david says:

    Just now i bought camera.. this my first camera…can you please.. tell me the settings exactly the best shots. i am finding problem in zooming camera is shaking.. if take photos its shaking. its taking lot of time for exporsers..

  36. Ric says:

    Hi David…

    You’ve purchased a very nice, powerful camera. As it is your first camera, there is a lot to learn, if you want to learn how to record the images you choose. The best place to start would be with the manual…
    Yeah, I know. My P100 manual has 202 pages. I’ve spent years working with cameras, but the manual is a very valuable tool and I use it. A camera does not see things quite the way the human eye does. A camera is just a little machine and therefore it will have limitations that our eyes do not. Conversely, a camera can also see things that we cannot. It is up to the photographer to learn the range of abilities of current technology, and the camera in our hands. There is no magic setting that will always produce a perfect shot. Also, an extended zoom, or ultra zoom camera offers more reach, but a few new lessons for correct use. I’m still learning…

    Digital photography is a wonderful thing. It allows us to see the result of a shot immediately. Take lots of shots. Change settings. Learn how to brace one elbow against something immovable for shots with the zoom set to telephoto. You can always delete the shots that you don’t like. Practice makes rejects! Practice also makes perfect, but you have to understand the basics and develop a feel for both photography and the tools used to take wonderful pictures.

    Perhaps the most important thing is to actually take shots. Nothing more than that. If you don’t try, you’ll never achieve. I do believe that by taking many photographs you’ll see, and learn how to produce, the shots that hold the eye and inflame the imagination!

    I hope this helps,

    Ric Hornsby/

  37. Ric says:

    I’ve now had some time to play with my new P100. I’m quite satisfied with it. I’ve had it outside for some landscape/architecture shots (there is a new one on my site,, of the Pavilion at Assiniboine Park in Winnipeg. The shot has been run in HDR through Photoshop and has further been processed for web optimization, but it is a cool shot. I took the shot yesterday after doing a series of copywork for a local artist. I was very happy with the result of the copying of some of her many artworks including ink-drawings, acrylic work, lithographs and more. I used to do copywork for my area government and used up to 4 x 5 cameras for same. The P100 was easy to use and produced very good quality copies for archiving and web use. Further, I recently did a 9 person family portrait the worked very nicely. The portrait was done in a small apartment and the result is actually better than expected.

    I like the feel and balance of the camera. It does have to be adjusted for low light white balances (2 – 8 second exposures under a mix of light sources), but overall I am impressed with how far mid-range digital camera technology has come in only the past few years. I did have to purchase a slightly larger camera bag than the one I use for the P80, but that is partly because I intend on carrying a few more gadgets with the new camera.

    The camera’s focus is quite a bit faster than the P80 and this is very welcome. I haven’t had opportunity to try the subject tracking mode, but I look forward to trying this with some birds a bit later in the year. I used autofocus for the copywork and it worked very nicely for a variety of low and high contrast paintings. The camera’s metering for the copywork was good, but I still shot about 5 images at 1/3 stop differences. (Bracketing is a good thing for many situations.)

    The camera loads images to the computer very fast. This, no doubt, is assisted by a Class 10 SD card. My P80 is stocked with Class 6 cards, but I’ll choose the faster ones for speed of use and for shooting some HD video.

    Overall, I’m having fun with the camera and it hasn’t given me any grief after about 300 shots.



  38. david says:

    Hi Ric,
    Thank you for your guidance..
    I agree what you are telling is must be correct.. ya i need to learn more things..
    becoz i will get very good photos under some settings.. i feel i need to spend more time on this.but i really love this camera many features good experimental really i like the way you expressed your thoughts towards my learning stage. it gave lots of encourage thank you once again Ric…

  39. Sayan Sengupta says:

    Hi Ric!

    Checked out the new images on your website! No wonder what this cam is capable of doing in the right hands! Loved the closeup of the sea bird(forgive me, I don’t know its name!). You must have got really close even to use the 26X zoom!

    The link behind odinsdottir is interesting! And it was a delight reading your review of the cam, feature by feature.

    Happy clicking!


  40. Ric Hornsby says:


    Thanks for the comments. The bird shot is of a brown pelican. Most of the shots on our site were taken with the P80 and I’m just starting to feed in shots with the P100. I’m looking forward to a productive year of capturing whatever images happen in front of me. Also, I have to apologize that the full site is not yet up. I’m trying to design a site that will be a little different than most while at the same time learning how to code a website. It is a challenge…

    Earlier this evening, I pulled some nice sunset shots as the temperature dropped to -29C. I should note that I used the exposure compensation to underexpose by 1 full stop (-1 EV) to get the colour of the sky and clouds to really pop. I do shift exposure quite a bit without really thinking about it after too many years of doing it naturally. I often bracket exposures, but generally shift exposure to over or under based on what I see. This is one of the reasons I like Nikon’s metering patterns and this is one of the joys of knowing how a camera works. It becomes second nature and it really can make for seriously better images. Having a reliable camera, and knowing just a few tricks, can place you well ahead of what most people can shoot.

    Practice makes rejects, right?


    Ric Hornsby/

  41. Sayan Sengupta says:

    Yeah Ric!

    Learning and doing it all by yourself is a challenge and a divine pleasure in itself! Be it photography or building up websites! Most people down here would prefer giving the job of designing websites to professionals rather than doing everything from scratch! You’re the first (other than the software/computer science/information technology guys) I came across in recent years taking up that endeavor all by yourself! Hope to see your new site soon!

    Talking about exposures, even I found out that underexposing does turn up better colors. In fact I hardly use the cam at 0 EV. I used to do the same with the camera in my cellphone(it was a good one for that matter!;-)) and it applied for this one as well.



  42. stan isaksen says:

    Okay, I tried. I bought the P-100 late last fall from COSTCO. I got it home and found that it was missing the carrying neck strap. Called Nikon and spent 1.5 hours explaining that I would like one, was told I had to fax my request to a 631 area code number, and to put in a special code with the fax request. I gave up; I couldn’t understand the woman in Costa Rica that i was talking to. Brought the camera back to COSTCO, asked to have it exchanged, instead they pulled a neck strap out of another box. So much for quality control.
    I tried the camera for a few days, couldn’t get the focus right every time. I brought it back and got another one. Tried the new one for a few weeks. It has problems with either exposure (washed out) or focusing on the subject. I returned it yesterday and got my money back. Oh, and that neckstrap? It was waiting for me when I got home (via UPS). Also, the placement of the elctric eye is right behind where your right index finger would go to support the camera, not the best place. The end.

  43. Ravi says:

    Hai, Is that any books or magazine for learning NIKON P100.. or any website pls let me know i want learn lots of tricks and i want to improve my photography………..

  44. Sayan Sengupta says:

    Hi Ravi,

    Start with the user’s manual. Although you might find it clumsy and hard at the beginning, it is the best material you have to begin with. Read each feature in detail and practice the same immediately. I spent one complete week doing that after I bought my cam! The best way you can improve your photography is by getting a feel of the cam, which is possible only through practice!



  45. Ric Hornsby says:


    I have to agree with Sayan. The manual is required reading as there are so many possible settings with the P100. Today’s cameras are so comprehensive in their abilities that I even carry my manual in the camera bag and read it during breaks at work. There are no magic settings to get the best shot in every situation and the only way you’ll be able to adapt to a given situation is by being familiar with the powerful little adjustments you can make specific to what you want to capture. That means a lot of mistakes, but it won’t cost you anything but time and effort.

    An idea of where you can grow to may be illustrated by a shot I have running on The Weather Network site for Canada. Yes, it is a fast Photoshop 5 minute hack with a lot of technical errors, but it did prove a point I was making to someone. Here is the link

    This shot was compiled from 2 extremely varied shots with my P80. It demonstrates that even if a shot has little worth, at the time, it may be very useful later on. Both original shots were done under vastly different lighting conditions and colours, but they managed to be similar enough due to exposure value for the camera. I was able to play with combining the shots in an interesting way. One shots was done in Mexico and the other was done on Lake Winnipeg, Canada.

    All it takes is to try…



  46. Sayan Sengupta says:

    oooo Ric!!

    That’s some really hot job! Tagdaa!!(pronounced thagrhaa)(=something like super wow(!), in Hindi)


  47. Daven says:

    Would you be willing to share what those settings were/are? I have problems in venues which won’t allow flash photography. Even though I ensure I have a firm “green” focus lock, 90% of what I shoot is blurred.

  48. shahriar says:

    Dear friend please help me about this, Im confused about buying these cameras:
    Sony HX1, Canon SX30, Nikon P100, Olympus SP800
    Please help me if you have information, Im not profesional , my last camera was Canon powershot A70, dramatically I loved it.

  49. david says:

    hi shahriar,
    i have canon sx30 and nikon p100. both are really good cameras. auto mode is good in canon. but nikon manual control is very good compared to canon its my feeling. that too canon is little bit costly. i heard sp800 is also good. i am also scratch head like this first finalize your budget. its depend on you how you take photos.
    i will use more p100 only its ease of use good.
    sp800 will take more sharp pictures than p100.
    but in nikon p100 lot of features are there we can have fun..but auto mode is not good if you patience and interested in photography go for nikon otherwise canon or sp800 is good. i like nikon p100.

  50. shahriar says:

    many thanks for you
    I have searched alot in this case and I have foun that the Sony HX1 is the first rank, but its price is alit abit high, I dont know does it worth or not?
    and also I doubt in Sony camera.

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