It's clear that Nikon has put in a lot of thought to the design of the P7700, with lots of direct control dials and buttons that will surely appeal to the enthusiast photographer.
The camera also feels very solidly built, and like a real piece of quality kit in the hand. Despite the 7x optical zoom lens and the articulating screen, the overall size of the body is still relatively small. Although it's not quite trouser pocketable, slipping the Nikon P7700 into a jacket pocket or a bag should be no trouble.
At the top of the camera is a mode dial, which enables you to choose between fully automatic, semi-automatic and fully manual modes. Nikon has also included the ability to save up to three groups of commonly used settings and access them directly from the mode dial. Extra touches such as this make the camera really quite appealing.
There's also several Fn buttons that can be customised to quickly access a variety of different functions. For example, one that can be found at the top of the camera can be used to quickly switch on visual aids, such as the digital level gauge.
Another useful dial on top of the camera is an exposure dial, giving quick access to exposure compensation, which ranges between +/- 3. Since this is located at the top-right of the camera, it's easy to push around with a thumb when shooting one-handed.
Also helpful for quick access is a second dial on the top-left of the camera. You spin this round to gain instant access to controls such as ISO, white balance and picture style. Once an option is selected on the dial, you can hit a button in the centre of it to immediately access that setting.
A scrolling dial at the top of the grip portion of the camera sits nicely under the finger when holding it and can be used to control parameters such as aperture and shutter, depending on the shooting mode.
The grip itself is also pretty chunky, giving good purchase, especially when holding the camera one-handed. A thumb grip at the back of the camera also helps with keeping a good hold on the camera.
Another scrolling dial can be reached easily from the thumb grip, and is used to set other functions. One handy thing here is that the Function buttons can combine with the scroll dial to give even more customised access to key functions.
It's a shame that the Nikon P7700's screen isn't a touch device, since that would make accessing key functions and setting the autofocus point a lot quicker.
Autofocus points can be selected when shooting in the appropriate mode. To do this, the central button on the four-way pad needs to be pressed, then using either the scroll dial or directional keys, the desired point can be selected.