Kodak EasyShare P880 Digital Camera Review
Design / Layout
Model Design / Appearance*(6.0)
*This Kodak is designed to look like a SLR but still have the ease of use that the manufacturer is known for. The result is a compact SLR-like camera that attempts to offer all the handling features of a single lens reflex digital camera in a baby size. In fact, my first impression of the camera’s design was, "Oh how cute. It’s a wittle baby SLR." I’m not sure that’s the reaction serious photographers want.
There is a large right-hand grip and a zoom lens that protrudes outward from the camera and looks like it could detach. There are lots of dedicated buttons on the body of the EasyShare P880. There are buttons down the left side of the LCD screen and more on the right side. There are buttons atop the camera on both sides of the flash. They’re everywhere! This design choice means that users spend less time digging through menus, but there are so many buttons that it looks overly complicated for a compact and may intimidate novices.
Size / Portability*(5.5)
*The Kodak EasyShare P880 looks like a tiny SLR with its compact 4.5 x 3.8 x 3.6-inch measurements. It is smaller than any DSLR but definitely taller than most compact digital cameras. The P880 has a boxy look – as do many DSLRs – and weighs in accordingly at 17.6 ounces without the card or battery. The Kodak EasyShare P880 feels just right with its boxy size and heft; if it weighed any more, it would be a strain on the wrists; if it weighed any less, it would feel cheap. There are eyelets on each side of the camera and an included neck strap for longer photo sessions, and the user should definitely purchase a camera bag of some sort.
*This digital camera was not designed for one-handed shooting at all. In fact, it may be designed for three-handed shooting. There are buttons all over the camera body so every finger will be used to access a different mode or control. The right-hand grip is comfortable; it is the perfect size for my hands (I realize not everyone has hands my size, but if you have an apple-sized palm and 3-3 1/2-inch fingers the P880 is as comfy as the bucket seats in your college ride). Holding this camera is like holding a SLR because of its dimensions. The right hand will be on the grip and the left hand will support the bottom of the body and lens. However, handling is complicated a bit by the many buttons on the camera body. The right thumb will be able to access the set button and the jog dial to change exposure settings. The right index finger will be on the shutter release button and will be able to access the two buttons closest on the top. Still, there are several buttons that are out of easy reach including all of the buttons on the left side of the LCD and the buttons to the left of the pop-up flash. So while shooting is simple, changing the exposure settings and menu options isn’t quite as easy.
Control Button / Dial Positioning / Size*(6.25)
*There are more buttons on the Kodak P880 than most other EasyShare digital cameras. The Kodak EasyShare P880 has lots of dedicated buttons; to the left of the LCD are flash, metering, ISO and white balance buttons. These are not easily accessed by the left hand, which is busy supporting the weight of the lens and camera body. The right hand is kept busy too. The thumb supports the back of the camera and switches from the jog dial to the Set button to change the aperture and shutter speed. Unfortunately, this is complicated by the stiffness of the jog dial and the recessed nature of the Set button. The power switch is wrapped around the shutter release button, which the right index finger rests upon. Not only does the switch turn from On to Off, but the Favorites album selection is on there as well. The Off switch rests in between the On and Favorites positions. It must take awhile to get the hang of switching the camera On because I kept accidentally accessing the Favorites when I wanted to power the camera on and shoot. Then when I went to turn the camera off, I’d turn the switch too far to the Favorites position. Oops. To further complicate things, the navigation isn’t as smooth as it should be. The multi-selector consists of a single toggle that can be pushed in every direction to scroll through menus and pressed inward to make selections. Unfortunately, this cannot be operated as quickly as other more traditional multi-selectors. The toggle is easily pushed in unwanted directions, making accidental selections a common incidence. Pressing the toggle inward many times resulted in a push up or down instead. Overall, the control buttons are adequately sized but strangely placed and are even somewhat difficult to use.
*With an excellent layout and an easily readable font, the Kodak EasyShare P880 has great menus. It is a bit difficult to navigate them because of the joystick-like toggle, but with all of the dedicated buttons on the body users shouldn’t have to access the menus all that often. Across the top of the menus are folder tabs with icons of cameras. The plain camera icon signifies a simple menu that’s available in every mode including the full auto mode; it consists of Picture Size, File Type, Color Mode, and Date Stamp options.
An icon of a camera with a plus sign next to it signifies the advanced menu available in the priority and manual modes. The following options are available in the advanced shooting menu: Custom White Balance, AF Control, AF Zone, Sharpness, Contrast, and Slow Flash Sync. The final tab of the menu shows a camera with a wrench next to it.
The setup menu of the Kodak P880 is quite lengthy with this list of options: LCD Brightness, Image Storage, Set Album, Low Light AF LED, MF Assist AF, Redeye Reduction, AE/AF Button Set, Program Button Capture, Program Button Review, Orientation Sensor, Quickview, Camera Sounds, Sound Volume, Mode Description, Accessory Lens, Date & Time, Video Out, EVF/LCD Standby, Auto Power Off, Language, Reset Camera, Format, and About. Plenty of options abound in the Playback mode’s menu as well: View, Album, Protect, Edit, Redeye Reduction, Slideshow, Copy, and Multi-up. Still image editing options include cropping and resizing.
Overall, the menus are easy on the eyes and navigation is intuitive, but physically pointing the joystick to where it should go is another matter altogether.
Ease of Use*(6.5)
*For a digital camera that carries the word "easy" in its name, the P880 sure is complicated. The ease of use is mainly hindered by the awful navigation joystick and the stiff and oddly placed buttons. This model is definitely not as easy as the other Kodak EasyShare digital cameras. That said, it is not designed for the same audience that covets ease of use. The EasyShare P880 is the flagship of Kodak’s Performance Series – not the point-and-shoot series. To its credit, the P880 does have lots of dedicated buttons so avoiding the menu altogether is possible. Also, there is a fully automatic mode that lets users completely ignore all other controls when they’ve reached the end of their ropes. And as on all Kodak digital cameras, there is a ruby red Share button that does simplify transferring and printing images directly from the camera.
Get Our Newsletter
Real advice from real experts. Sign up for our newsletter
Thanks for signing up!