Now that the home entertainment market has moved towards streaming video services and Blu-ray content, there has never been a better time to convert DVD collections to digital.
- Very affordable, easy-to-use, comfortable physical design, decent manual features and 'fun' modes
- Noticeable barrel-roll and purple fringing, washed out colours, soft focus, inaccurate battery-level indicator
A decent feature set, a nice physical design and an easy-to-use menu system are all offset by a sensor that takes relatively poor quality images. However, at well under $200, the image quality is a moot point and this camera is well worth a shot.
Price$ 179.00 (AUD)
Samsung's S750 is a relatively fun 'happy snap' camera with a large 7-megapixel sensor, but the fun is short-lived due to its thirst for battery power -- or more accurately, its inaccuracy at determining how much battery power is left!
Annoyingly, even though the battery-level indicator on the large 2.5in screen would show two bars remaining, we were often thwarted in our attempts to take pictures due to the camera telling us there was no power left and automatically shutting itself down. This was downright frustrating as it would work again after a few minutes rest.
Physically, the camera isn't badly designed at all. Its two AA batteries sit in a compartment that doubles as a fairly comfortable hand-grip and its controls are very easy to use. The rotary dial snaps each mode crisply into place, while the shutter button has two distinct steps for focusing first, and then taking a shot. The rear of the camera has zoom, menu and shortcut buttons for its settings and creative features. The bottom has a tripod mount, and the camera's weight (around 200 grams when loaded with batteries) is perfectly suited to a mini-tripod for when you want to setup night shots and self-portraits.
The camera can accommodate an SD card, which slots in next to the batteries, but it does have internal memory, too, which is enough for about seven shots at the highest megapixel setting.
When scrutinised in auto-mode, the camera's 7-megapixel sensor produced relatively poor results. Colours were washed out most of the time and hues looked a little unnatural in our daytime outdoor shots and indoor flash-assisted shots. As for focus, images looked a little soft; furthermore, images looked noisy and the lens produced noticeable barrel-roll, as many straight lines in our photos looked curved. Chromatic aberration was also a problem, with contrasting areas suffering from noticeable fringing.
Are there any redeeming factors, you ask? Well, it's cheap. This camera can be bought for well under $200 from many retailers, and from the image quality we observed, it would be remiss of us not to use the cliche 'you get what you pay for'. But it's so cheap that the image quality problems we observed probably shouldn't be a factor in your buying decision. Indeed, while it does have problems, its shots are still passable and it's an easy camera to use. Coupled with its feature set, it's an especially ideal starting point for any young kids who are keen to get an eye for photography -- or, of course, older folk.
While we used the camera in auto mode, the camera does also have a manual mode. Here, the shutter speed, aperture, ISO and white balance can be changed by using the thumb control. Additionally, the camera has various 'fun' modes: it can perform an in-camera composite photo consisting of two different shots, it can insert a frame around a picture and it can highlight a certain area of a picture. Black and white photos and sepia images can also be taken. It actually is fun to play with all these features and Samsung's menu system does make it very easy to invoke them all. We just wish its power management was better so that we could've used these features for a longer period of time.
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