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on 8 January 2014
I took the P520 on a 'baptism of fire' (or perhaps more accurately, an 'ordeal by water') outing on New Year's Day to test it out photographing seals at Donna Nook. It did take a little getting used to (but then don't all new pieces of kit?) and my efforts improved considerably when my technically-alert friend pointed out that the screen actually folded back on itself to make a flat back screen, which I am used to rather than protruding at 180 degrees to the camera, which I found somewhat difficult. The weather was truly vile, so photograhpic conditions were somewhat less than ideal. I tried the zoom at all lengths, leaving the setting in auto, since I wasn't in the mood to play with it. Having downloaded the images, given the fact that I was not at all confident with using the camera, the results were very promising (and improved noticeably during the hour that I spent there, despite increasing numbness in the fingers and cold-induced camera-shake!). I think it will do what I bought it for - photographing natural history - extremely well. My only real issues with it are that it charges direct from the camera, which I don't very bright, since the camera would be left in full view charging for a couple of hours when on holiday (so I purchased a separate charger) and it doesn't shoot in RAW. At 18mp this probably doesn't matter too much, though. I couldn't find the plastic loop that supposedly attaches the lens cap to the body, which was slightly irritating, given the ease with which I lose lens caps. But overall, I liked this camera very much, and shall look forward to using it in rather better conditions!
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on 4 August 2013
Does exactly what it says on the tin. Having used a Nikon DSLR for the last ten years, it was a great surprise how easy this camera is to use
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on 10 October 2013
I was, until I really challenged what I wanted my camera for...

Car club photography, friends and family snapshots, holidays, days out, the occasional airshow...pretty typical usage I guess?
In the past, I had always enjoyed my photography with a 35mm SLR and a few lenses and achieved some decent results and even joined a camera club.

Like you are probably thinking, I thought I should buy a DSLR and pick-up where I left off with my 35mm? The only question was do I buy a Nikon or a Canon?

My family members are all Nikon fans (and I guess they do probably make the best commercial lenses), but really the Nikon/Canon choice is mostly down to personal preference and I am not writing on this subject today!

A couple of friends had purchase "bridge" cameras from Nikon, Fuji and Panasonic...all reported some excellent results. Meanwhile my family members with Nikon D200 and D300s were dragging around their bulky DSLR camera systems and I thought...if I get myself a DSLR it will sit in the cupboard because I will either be too lazy to carry it or be afraid it will get stolen!

Fast forward (excuse the pun) and I have, after reading loads of expert reviews, bought the Nikon P520...and I am absolutely delighted with it.

There is a setting for pretty much every eventuality. You can take the camera out of the box and start taking decent photos from day one. The camera is nicely finished, works beautifully smoothly and quickly. I have so far found nothing to dislike about it and have now, after gaining confidence and knowledge of operating the camera, created a few photos that are absolutely outstanding (honest!).

You can take top quality "point and shoot" snaps, or use the camera's features to get creative.

The superb quality foldaway screen (similar quality to a decent Nikon DSLR) is a bonus and the camera protects the screen whilst it is not in use.

The only additional items you will need to buy are a high speed (Class 10) 32GB 45MB/sec SDHC memory card and a Nikon Coolpix P520 camera bag (they cost a bit more because it is the best bag).
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 28 December 2013
First and foremost I have to say that I didn't buy this from Amazon,it was purchased 2nd hand from a friend who had to sell it for medical reasons.
This is a stonking little camera and so far I have only one issue with it,and that is the fact that it has no button for switching between the screen and the viewfinder, (the screen has to be turned round before the viewfinder comes on) I think I understand why Nikon have done this as my wife has the previous model ie. the P510 and she has always said that when using the Viewfinder she found that the screen became smeared with make up/suntan oil etc. from her face. That is just my best guess and I could be completely wrong.
The camera itself is really excellent, it is very lightweight, takes great pics and has lots of auto and manual options to play with.
I really like the command dial that controls the menu operation, which to my mind is a vast improvement to struggling with the single round button on my previous cameras.
I have previously owned a couple of other Bridge cameras and so far this looks to be the best of all. Should I have any other issue I will return and edit this review
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on 8 January 2014
The very first thing I would advise anyone intending to buy the Nikon P520 is to read both the Techradar and Photography Blog reports that are available freely on the internet. I say that because the P520 is quite a different beast from either a Compact or a DSLR and requires individual handling and having to start from scratch again. I have four Nikon Compacts and two Nikon DSLRs so that I am quite familiar with Nikon nowadays.

I bought the P520 for one reason only and that is the quite extraordinary flexibility of its telephoto facility which is, I believe, 24-1000. To equip a DSLR with that sort of superzoom facility would cost several thousand pounds. I got my P520 from Amazon (in a superb dark silver colour) for £260.

Does the superzoom work? It certainly does, even for a rank amateur like I, but it does take time to get used to. I had it with me in Yorkshire over the Christmas period and in Ireland over the New Year period and I can say that the quality of the telephoto facility is beyond what I had expected. A distant grouse in the North York Moors was no problem and neither was a diving gannet in the North Channel.

That said, while I am very impressed with the camera overall, and especially with the quality of print, the camera does have its limitations and irritations. Whenever flash is required, one has to remember to push the flash light button to take effect for every individual session and that can be a bit of a nuisance. Also, the P520 is far less forgiving than a DSLR and any error or movement can all too easily result in a blurred photograph. And, as yet, I have to get to grips with the ISO speeds.

However, what I disliked above everything else was having to charge the battery with the battery still inside the camera. That is a cumbersome business. I read some where that the P520 takes only 200 stills before discharging completely and the Nikon booklet states that a full charge takes 4½ hours! A solution had to be found and that was the purchase of a standalone battery charger together with two additional batteries. Without those additions (which are minor in cost), I don't think that I would like the P520 quite so much and quite irrespective of its magnificent zoom facility.

Personally, I still prefer a Nikon DSLR but the P520 is an extremely useful supplement.

UPDATE : 10 July 2014. I have had this Nikon P520 for some eight months now and, having taken it with me recently as the only camera for a three week trip to the Western Isles, with nothing else to fall back on, I have ascertained both its
strengths and weaknesses.

Its strengths remain(a)the telephoto facility and (b)the quality of print. Both are outstanding.

I have also discovered two additional weaknesses. The first is that, when taking video (which, admittedly, I don't do often with cameras, preferring standalone video equipment instead), zooming in or zooming out causes blurring that lasts approximately one or two seconds. This is extremely annoying and leaves me much more dissatisfied with the P520 than I was hitherto. My P520 may, of course, be faulty in that regard but it is something that an intending purchaser should be aware of.

The second weakness is that, when using a tripod at long range, the zoom facility is so sensitive that pressing the shutter release can result in gross distortion, making the intended photograph a mess. I found that the best way to take a long-range photograph is to look through the viewfinder as in cameras of old. I understand that Nikon have a wireless receiver on the market for the P520 which is triggered by a Smartphone but, as I have no Smartphone, it is of little use to me.

For those reasons, I revise my opinion of the P520.
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on 11 February 2014
Done a lot of research before deciding on this camera. The image quality and the zoom were the deciding factors. I am however amazed that a camera with a 1000mm and a very good 2000mm digital zoom has no means of remotely triggiring the shutter when on the tripod, as it needs to be at those magnifacations. I could of course use the selftimer and ask the bird to hold it there for 2 seconds. Or I could buy that plugin gadget for £45 and the smart phone I don't need for £100 to activate it not forgetting the appropriate app to get things working after the time lapse that accurs between activation and shutter firing with this setup. Good all round bridge camera but do not buy it for serious wildlife shooting. regards
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on 11 September 2013
it does everything I want and more with brilliant quality photo's.... love the macro and love the zoom, I have photos I am proud of now ... it its light weight yet sturdy and well made. its a great starter if you want to take up photography. and also great if you are, and don't want to carry around lots heavy expensive equipment all day, but still want some good pics
I have had it approx. 14 weeks now and haven't put it down.
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on 22 April 2014
The price was very good and I found the camera very easy to use and it gives good quality photos. So far I have only used it at 8MB resolution which is sufficient for my current needs.

I purchased this type of camera, which is in effect an SLR with built-in zoom, as I was finding it more and more difficult to cope with lens changing on my standard SLR. I am very pleased with my purchase and the results I get from it.
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on 29 November 2013
I spent quite a while researching as I wished to upgrade from a small camera to a digital camera. Wondered about buying a DSLR camera with facility for separate lenses, but often the lenses were more expensive than the camera itself. So I opted for this 'bridge' camera.
I found it very easy to set up, and the ease of the zoom lens was wonderful, taking from wide angle up to super telephoto,. It has a small but useful viewfinder which enables elimination of 'sloping seas!
On auto setting, it copes with all light levels, and is especially good in low light areas (twilight etc) where results are brilliant and clear. If all you need is a good 'shoot and go' camera with a good quality zoom lens,and you don't wish to exchange lenses all the time, then this may well be the camera for you.
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on 8 September 2013
This camera is great for family holidays but can be used for a beginner getting in to photography it has an incredible zoom and is a bridge camera because it is crossed between a cheaper point and shoot camera and an expensive dslr. If you are looking for an excellent camera but you want better than a point and shoot camera but not as expensive as a dslr this is an awesome camera
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