DigitalCameraReview.com
Samsung launches moderately priced SL models
by David Rasnake -  7/15/2008

In an early morning announcement, Samsung has rolled out a pair of new SL models: the feature-rich SL310W and the budget-minded SL201.

Featuring the 28mm wide-angle lens similar to the one seen in Samsung's high-end ultracompacts, the SL310W packs the versatility of a more expensive camera into a moderately priced package.

Samsung SL310W

Behind its 3.6x zoom, the SL310W employs a 13.6 megapixel CCD sensor, affording users some seriously high-resolution image capture from a compact camera. Dual (optical as well as digital) Image Stabilization, a 2.7-inch display, and Samsung's standard palette of soft features (including Smile Shot and Blink Detection) all further enhance the SL310W's appeal for shooters seeking a step-up device.

Samsung SL310W

Likewise, Function Description and Photo Help Guide technologies provide easy to understand on-screen advice for exploring camera functions and taking better pictures, making the camera equally attractive to novice shutterbugs. Eleven scene presets are also available to assist when shooting in a variety of situations.

Although it lacks the stunningly high-res sensor and wide-angle lens of the SL310W, the SL201 offers up a well-rounded list of features not traditionally associated with a sub-$200 device.

Samsung SL201

A 10.2 megapixel sensor, a 3x lens, and a 2.7-inch LCD serve as the technological anchors for the smaller SL model. Optical image stabilization gets lost in the move down, but the SL201 does provide digital stabilization with sensitivity up to ISO 1600.

As before, eleven scene modes are available, as are the Function Description and Photo Help Guide systems. Self Portrait and Face Detection modes round out the SL201 more casual-shooter focused feature set.

Samsung SL201

Li-ion power allows for a slim profile, and the SL201's sleek brushed metal exterior exudes high-end style.

With a release date set for September, both SL models should hit the street priced competitively: MSRP for the SL310W is $229.95, with the SL201 ringing up at a mere $169.95.