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Samsung L201 Digital Camera Review

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Digital Camera Review by: Katrina Putker

 

The 10.2 mega pixel Samsung L201 has a positively minimal feel about it, which is obvious from the time you first open the boxed kit. The provided USB cable doubles as the power cord (for battery recharge) by having an attachable AC adapter head meaning you can go from having the L201 plugged directly into your computer to having it charging via a wall socket in a matter seconds and with minimal fuss.

Being able to charge the dedicated battery whilst in-camera also allows for greater convenience: no more fiddling around with a battery charger unit nor taking the battery to-and-from the camera after every few uses.

The L201 kit comes complete with a strap, AV cable, software, 14-page manual and warranty card and only requires the purchase of a memory card and camera case before all that is required to shoot, upload, edit, recharge and care for your camera, is at your fingertips.

Keeping in line with the minimalist approach, the L201 is cleanly and compactly designed with a two-tier, three times optical zoom lens that neatly retracts into the camera body when power is off. A wide variety of colours are available including traditional silver and black, while for those who prefer to make a bolder statement, pink, blue and green are additional options.

The L201 has an intelligent 2.7-inch LCD screen that fills two-thirds of the camera’s back and provides a clear, bright picture in most conditions. Start-up time is rapid at less than 1.5 seconds along with auto focus, which proves to be both accurate and swift shot after shot.

There aren’t excessive operational buttons and dials to negotiate on the Samsung L201 and all 13 of them are placed logically and ergonomically for use. The zoom control is the most difficult to handle given its small size and up/down functioning opposed to the standard left/right, but having said that it would quickly become a habit and feel quite natural to the user. 

An automatic double flash system is used to help achieve optimum results and Samsung’s auto contrast balance technology (ACB) applies itself when in back lit conditions to help better reproduce detail in the shadowed areas. Face detection technology is also included and when selected, will adjust the automatic exposure and focus to better suit portrait shooting.

Fortunately, the user will not be overwhelmed by scene modes as only ten of the most common are included in the L201: nightscene, children, landscape, close-up, text, sunset, dawn, backlight, fireworks, and beach and snow, making it simpler to narrow down which mode is best for the current shooting situation.

Many users will also appreciate the in-house photo help guide, which offers an assortment of advice given particular tricky situations that may be encountered. For instance, the L201 will instruct you of ways to counteract out of focus images and those resulting camera shake, how to achieve better results in low-light conditions, and ways to adjust brightness and colour etc.

Users also have the ability to resize and/or rotate images, manually adjust brightness, contrast, saturation and colour mode (change to black and white, sepia, red, green, blue and negative) in camera, along with red eye fix and automatic brightness and contrast adjustment meaning that often, little to no editing via a computer is necessary.

medal-platinum-r.jpg The eight-function mode dial includes popular choices: auto, program, manual, scene and movie mode, along with digital image stabilisation, photo help guide, and face detection. It would have been beneficial had digital image stabilisation and face detection run automatically and concurrently when auto mode was selected but indeed, having them as selectable options is preferable to not having them at all. Digital image stabilisation mode does take between five and seven seconds to capture and process a single image however, so realistically could only be used to capture still life or for experimentation.

The L201 menu system is plainly laid out and easy to navigate making it fairly foolproof and likely suit those who desire a simple-to-use point-and-shoot compact camera that reliably delivers high quality images and movie clips with a minimum amount of fuss. At RRP $229 the L201 is extremely affordable and being of a similar size to a standard deck of cards, it is highly portable as well.

 

Appearance rating 4 stars
Functionality rating 3.5 stars
Image quality
4 stars
Lens quality
4 stars
View finder / LCD screen 3.5 stars
Value for money 4 stars
RRP (AUD) $229
SPACER.GIF  
Effective Pixels 10.2 Million mega pixels
Image Sizes 7 Sizes
Lens - zoom wide [mm] 35mm (35mm equivalent )
Lens -zoom tele [mm] 105mm (35mm equivalent )
Lens - Optical Zoom Yes, 5x
Resolution Settings From 1024 x 768 to 3648 x 2736
Shooting Modes 10 Scene options
Face Detection Yes
Manual Focus No
Auto Focus Yes
Focus Range [cm] 80cm - infinity
Aperture Range F3.0(W) ~ 5.6(T)
Aperture Priority No
Macro Yes
Macro Range [cm] 10cm ~ 80cm (wide), 50cm ~ 80cm (tele)
Shutter Speeds 8 ~ 1/1,500 sec.
Shutter Priority No
ISO Auto, 80, 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600
LCD Monitor Yes
LCD Size 2.7" LCD Screen
Viewfinder No
Flash Auto, Auto & Red-eye reduction, Fill-in flash, Slow sync, Flash off, Red eye fix
Hot Shoe No
White balance Auto, Cloudy, Daylight, Fluorescent, Incandescent, Manual
Self Timer Yes. 10 seconds, 2 seconds, Double
Movie Options Yes. Limited only by memory card size.
Video Out Yes
Storage Type Internal Memory : Approx. 16MB, External Memory (Optional) : MMCplus (up to 1GB guranteed), SD (up to 2GB guranteed), SDHC (up to 8GB guranteed)
Storage Included [Mb] 16MB Internal Memory
Image / Audio Formats JPEG (DCF), EXIF 2.21, DPOF 1.1, PictBridge 1.0
Connectivity USB
Power Source SAC-47
Battery Options SLB-0837(B) (800mAh)
Dimensions 90.2 x 58 x 19.3mm
Weight 110g (without battery and card)





















 


 


 


 

 
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