At first blush the new P7700 looks very interesting with a faster lens and a tilt/swivel LCD monitor. Then I saw that Nikon has done away with the optical viewfinder. Why??? For a DSLR user looking to buy a small lightweight "mini-SLR" don't they realize that an OVF is a virtual necessity?
Graham From St. Augustine, FL. "I like photographers, you don't ask questions." Ronald Reagan to White House Press Photogs
I would have said the same when I first got my P7000 but since then I have never used the viewfinder. The P7700 seems like a very fast more powerful Coolpix and has my interest peaked due to the very fast lens and the fully articulated LCD. I guess the real test will be how fast the AF works.
Yes, the P7700 does look good. However, the lack of a viewfinder is a deal breaker for me. I find a viewfinder, however rudimentry, is essential when panning action shots. Examples where I have had success with my P7000 is bicycle track racing, aerobatics and other action shots.
Unfortunately most of these come with enough noise that I really miss the DSLR mirror slap and blackout and lens aperture noise to let me know that the shot has been taken. I wish some indication in the VF could be contrived...
Regards, Clive Liddell Pietermaritzburg South Africa
Not having an OVF is a big disappointment to me as well. It might be mental, but I think the OVF helps stabilize the camera, since you are holding it to your face and close in. It's hard to view the monitor when its pressed against your cheek.
Scott Chapin Powder Springs, GA, USA Nikonians Team Member
Thank you for pointing out the omission of the OVF. I was very close to putting my P7100 on sale, in anticpation of the P7700. FullHD video, combined with a dedicated zoom lever, would have meant that there was no need to carry a dedicated video camera. Yes, I know that D800(E) takes excellent video material, but smooth zooming during recording is next to impossible. Omission of the OVF would not matter if my eyes were as adaptive as they were 20-30 years ago, but now I need reading glasses to see the LCD screen clearly, and in bright sunlight I don't see it at all.
I've been wavering between the P7100 and Fuji X10, and have been "this close" to springing for the Fuji. If Nikon had included a viewfinder in the P7700, I'd be on the pre-order list NOW. I wish they would come out with an external electronic viewfinder like Olympus and Panasonic have. Again, I would buy NOW!
I wonder if XDA developers (well-known Android developer group that creates Custom versions of Android for specific phones) is already planning to root (gain administrative access) this camera. Probably, just to have bragging rights. Nikon is getting closer to the socially-connected camera. It probably would have added another level of complexity to support a 3G/4G connection (which bands/carriers) and forced them to develop a phone which really isn't their core competency. It's just as well; they have their hands full just supporting the D800 launch and associated issues. <Sarcasm Filter ON> What would be cool is that you take a perfectly good photo with this camera and can now Instagram the heck out of it to look like you used a Holga. <Sarcasm Filter OFF>
I am in the market for a small, capable camera to use on my many motorcycle trips. The absence of the OVF in the latest coolpix is also a deal breaker for me. Hope Nikon reads these blogs. In the meantime, my D3 fits in my luggage. Rob