Samsung has spent the last few years revitalizing their imaging product line. Most recently their additions include the NX300, EX2F, NX20, and the subject of this review, the WB250F. With these new cameras, Samsung is further cementing their reputation as a leader in the smart camera genre. Enabling users to quickly transfer images from the camera to their smart phone or tablet, this technology makes sharing your images easier than ever before.
Build and Design
The Samsung WB250 is a lightweight point and shoot camera that is easily pocketable. The body of the camera is made of a plastic material that allows for the camera's all-day-go-anywhere mentality. It weighs 6.8oz and measures 2.4 inches(h)x4.2 inches(w)x1.3 inches(d). The camera's design is very similar to several other Samsung cameras from the rounded hand grip to the placement of the lens. The WB250F features a 14.2-megapixel 1/2.33-inch BSI (backside-illuminated) CMOS sensor with an 18x zoom lens. The f/3.2-5.8 lens is the equivalent of 24-432mm in 35mm format. The WB250F gives users the option to use Intelli-zoom, further expanding their focal range. The camera also features optical image stabilization.
The Samsung WB250F has undergone a few alterations from the original design of its predecessor, the WB150F. Most markedly is the new touchscreen and the improved placement of the pop-up flash.
The camera offers 9.5MB of internal memory. The WB250F also accepts SD, SCHC and SDXC cards. Images are recorded in JPG format. Movies are recorded as MP4 files.
Based on the price point of $250 and its less than premium materials, the WB250F looks to be designed for the casual shooter. That being said, the casual shooter will most likely enjoy its fun features and ease of use.
Ergonomics and Controls
The Samsung WB250F has simplistic, yet practical ergonomics. Similar to some of the more expensive Samsung cameras, the WB250F has a hand grip that is easy to hold and will allow for plenty of shooting without tiring one's hand. The front of the camera is void of any physical buttons --only a lens resides there. The top of the camera features a direct link button that accesses the camera's Wi-Fi with one touch. The power button sits just left of center. To the right of the power switch is a built-in flash which is triggered by an oblong button on the right of the flash. A -/+ toggle switch controls the zoom function. On the far right of the top of the camera sits the mode dial. Included on this dial is a variety of modes: auto, Wi-Fi, several special functions, P, and an all-in-one A-S-M mode. The back of the camera houses the majority of physical buttons. A dedicated movie button rests on the top right side of the thumb rest, giving you one touch movie recording. A four way dial with an "OK" button in the middle houses the macro function, flash function, display mode, and continuous shooting mode. Around this dial you can find the menu, return, playback and delete buttons. The buttons are logical and require little to no photographic knowledge.
Menus and Modes
This camera has a similar feature set as most other point and shoot cameras. The menu is simple to navigate. Those with little photographic experience can easily use the auto mode or, if desired, the user can learn about the camera's function through a tutorial based menu. The camera walks you through each setting with a description of the function. You can choose to display this tutorial or close the feature by pushing the trash/delete button. Both the menus and modes are user friendly. Samsung has repeatedly done a good job of creating a simple, enjoyable camera experience for the user -- especially those with little to no knowledge of cameras.
The WB250F offers users a 3-inch TFT LCD touchscreen made of 460,000 dots. It is clear and easy to see. However, use of the camera in bright conditions will render the screen somewhat difficult to see. The user can choose to change camera settings through the touchscreen or through the physical buttons. The display can be set to show the user quite a bit of data about the settings or to show just the image only. The display is a fixed screen and cannot be tilted or swiveled. A viewfinder is not present on this camera, nor can one be added.
The LCD screen displays images that are clear and generally represent the accurate image color. The movement on the screen while in movie and still image mode is fluid and smooth.
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