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You may question why I selected the Samsung WB250F for review after my less than positive review of the Galaxy, a camera replete with all sorts of problems like dust on the sensor, poor ISO performance and an inordinately long startup time!
My reasons: Samsung is now a major player in electronics, especially smart phones and the like, so a reasonably priced device such as this is worthy of attention.
The Samsung WB250F has an 18x zoom which begins on a usefully wide 24mm 35 SLR equivalent focal length and reaches out to a 35 SLR equivalent of 432mm.
Samsung has evolved its innovative Wi-Fi technology by creating SMART CAMERA 2.0: with it images and video can be sent simultaneously to a smartphone or tablet (using the Android OS) via a Wi-Fi connection.
The maximum image size is 4320×3240 pixels, enabling the output of a 37x27cm print.
Full HD video at 1920×1080 pixel resolution can be shot in MPEG4 format. The quality is about as good as you get from a still camera, although with a little focus hunting mid zoom.
The external controls are sufficient to get the camera going:
Top: on/off button; shutter button and zoom lever; Wi-Fi button; raise the flash button; mode dial with positions for auto, PASM, smart capture, best face exposures, W-Fi setup, a ‘magic’ button which allows you to do some extreme fiddling with saved shots … like arrange or edit several shots, create a GIF animation, apply a filter to video, etc.
Rear: menu; replay; trash; traverse through saved images; video record button; the control dial has positions for flash, macro, single/continuous shooting; display options.
There is a collection of 12 photo filters you can apply to saved image: from ink and oil painting to cartoon effect, sketch to retro (sepia) and more.
The screen menu is reasonably comprehensive but not daunting. The touch screen makes life with the WB250F extremely easy.
About two seconds from start up I could shoot the first shot; each shot came in about a second apart.
No distortion evident at the wide or tele ends of the zoom.
By ISO 1600 it appeared that definition had lowered. By ISO 3200 definition was even lower but surprisingly noise had not risen substantially.
Quality: average snapshot.
: looks good in white; budget-priced, compact, easy-to-use stills and video camera.
Why you wouldn’t: your ambitions run higher; no HDMI output.
Overall, this is an impressive little camera. It could easily replace my family snapper bought two years ago at twice the price!
Available in two colours; white and cobalt black.
Image Sensor: 14.2 million effective pixels.
Sensor Size: 7.67mm CMOS.
Lens: f23.2-5.8/4.0-72mm (24-432mm as 35 SLR equivalent).
Stabilisation: Optical image.
Exposure Modes: Auto, Program AE, shutter and aperture priority, manual.
Metering: Multi, centre-weighted, face detection.
Shutter Speed: (Auto) 1/8 to 1/2000; (Manual) 16 to 1/2000 second.
Continuous Shooting: 6 shots at 8 fps.
Memory: micro SD, SDHC, SDXC.
Image Sizes (pixels): 4320×3240 to 1024×768.
Movies: 1920×1080 and 1280×720 (both 30fps); 640×480 (60fps) and 320×240 (30fps), 240 web.
Viewfinder: 7.6cm LCD (460,000 pixels) touch screen.
File Formats: JPEG, MPEG4.
ISO Sensitivity: Auto, 100 to 3200.
Interface: USB 2.0, AV, Wi-Fi, DC input.
Power: Rechargeable lithium ion.
Weight: Approx. 226 g (ex battery).
Price: Get a price on the Samsung WB250F at Amazon.
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