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Nikon Coolpix L840: Is This the Best Budget Used Digital Camera?

Charles is a blogger, author, and content creator. He reviews consumer products for a living to help shoppers make informed decisions.

Front View of the Nikon Coolpix L840. Nikkor 38x Wide Optical Zoom Lens.

Front View of the Nikon Coolpix L840. Nikkor 38x Wide Optical Zoom Lens.

A Budget Powerhouse

You definitely won't find the Nikon L840 new in your local Best Buy or camera shop. That's because this camera was first released in 2015 as a replacement for the L830, which is great news for budget shoppers like me. A beautiful camera to look at with amazing specs at a budget price, the L840 is a great camera for still photography and won't break the bank.

I found this particular L840 gently used at my local pawn shop for $189 and I bargained with them for $150. The camera was in pristine condition, like new with the box and all the accessories. The previous owner never even connected the lens cover or neck strap! I've seen the Coolpix L840 listed on eBay, Facebook Marketplace, and offered for sale on Amazon as "used." Even with a tight budget, great deals on slightly older cameras are easy to find if you look in the right places.

I was in the market for a bridge camera—a camera that bridges the gap between cheaper point-and-shoot cameras and more expensive DSLR or mirrorless cameras. I also wanted something with a long zoom lens of 30x or more. I found exactly what I was looking for with the Nikon L840.

Left Side View of the Nikon Coolpix L840.

Left Side View of the Nikon Coolpix L840.

Features and Specs

The Nikon L840 offers a long zoom, a fast-handling design, with built-in Wi-Fi and near field communication technology (NFC), and it all comes together in this budget digital camera to help you take your photos and videos to the next level. Zoom in to catch great close-ups, then send your image directly to your compatible smartphone to share your photos instantly.

The Coolpix offers a flip-out, high-resolution, tilting LCD screen for taking low-angle macro shots of whatever is in front of you!

Release Date: March 2015

Resolution: 16 MP

Lens: Nikkor Wide Optical 4.0-152mm 1:3-6.5

Optical Zoom: 38x

Color: Black, Plum, Red

Connection Type: Composite Video, HDMI, USB

Video: 1080p Full HD

Batteries: 4 AA

Right Side View of the Nikon Coolpix L840.

Right Side View of the Nikon Coolpix L840.

Review and Opinion

First impressions are lasting impressions, upon opening the box and lifting out the "new to me" Nikon L840, I immediately noticed how light and balanced the camera was. Weighing in at only 19 ounces, this thing felt great in my hands. If looks were the only thing that makes a camera outstanding then Nikon has done it. What a sexy camera. I was originally looking for the black version but I was only able to find the red one locally. The exterior design is flawless and all the buttons are intuitively placed for ease of use.

The picture quality is excellent, I noticed that sometimes the photo displayed on the screen didn't appear crisp but when I opened it in my editor it was fine. Other than that, HD video was crisp and clear; the Nikon handled motion well with a lifelike representation of colors in both the camera and video modes.

I was completely impressed with the 38x optical zoom capability. I was able to take high-quality photos and videos of the moon in both low light and complete darkness. Very impressive for an older camera. With built-in stabilization, the Nikon makes it easy to take long zoom shots free-handed but better results are achieved when using a steady tripod.

Overall, I am totally impressed with this camera, even with it being seven years-old, it handles day-to-day use flawlessly. The only issues I have come across are the display problem I mentioned earlier and the relatively short battery life. I've noticed that I can only film for about an hour or so using standard AA alkaline batteries.

I am planning to switch to lithium AA batteries for critical photography projects and I am definitely investing in rechargeable batteries in the near future! Other than these two simple issues, I can't complain. The price is right, the specs are relatively decent for what I use it for, and you just can't beat the quality of a Nikon product, period.

Overall Rating of the Nikon Coolpix L840

Photos

4.4/5.0

Video

4.5/5.0

Construction

5.0/5.0

Weight

4.8/5.0

Ease of Use

5.0/5.0

Battery Life

4.0/5.0

Overall Rating

4.6/5.0

This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.

© 2022 Charles Kikas