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Samsung’s Galaxy Camera reviewed

By Leigh D. Stark | 6:26 pm 10/12/2012

You can even login using your Google account and download more apps, as well as jump online with Twitter, Facebook, and more, provided you have 3G or WiFi access.

Or you can just touch the camera app on either the menu or one of the widgetised home-screens, or depress the shutter button and throw yourself into the camera mode, which will load up the auto mode so you can get shooting quickly.

Smart allows you to select a shooting mode with by flicking up on the on-screen selection dial, or by switching to grid mode and seeing all the options.

Two other modes are available, with the “Smart” scene selection, which allows you to pick special modes such as a continuous shooting mode, fireworks, sunset, and macro modes.

Manual is the other mode that’s supported, with program (P), shutter-priority (S), aperture-priority (A), and manual (M), with the settings able to be changed using an on-screen lens with the values dialed in with a quick flick up or down on each part of the screen.

Video is also supported, with either 720p HD or 1080p Full HD modes on offer, and a quick video mode allowing you to jump in and start recording, snapping the occasional still simultaneously, or a more controlled manual video mode with exposure control.

Image quality isn’t bad for the camera, though it certainly doesn’t compete with advanced point and shoots, even though the Galaxy Camera has features one could say are “advanced,” even if they’re not advanced in areas like low-light or RAW support.

Close-ups and macro images are surprisingly detailed, with very sharp images that could be usable to nature photographers and food bloggers, allowing you to get up close and personal with the nitty gritty details.

Regular shots are sharp enough upon first glance, but once you get close to any of these, you see the sensor create a slightly blurry recreation of what you were photographing, similar to what we see from low-end shooters and smartphone cameras.

Macro photos are surprisingly sharp, and if you like taking pictures of food, you'll probably be happy.

Essentially, the Galaxy Camera isn’t here to take the place of Samsung’s EX series cameras, imaging devices designed to offer sharp and high-speed shooting in a compact form.

Rather, the Galaxy Camera is a connected camera, offering a long lens while allowing you to share to any network you want, taking the whole notion of social photography to the next level by letting you determine what level of connectivity you need.

But while Samsung’s Galaxy Camera is an interesting interpretation of connected photography, it carries with it some rather troublesome annoyances.

One of these is the battery life, and there’s no other way of saying this, but it’s just not good. If you just shoot casually, you might able to manage a day or two of life out of it.

But if you decide to take advantage of the 3G and WiFi connectivity you’re buying it for, you’ll find the first-generation Galaxy Camera lasts roughly five to six hours, not much in the grand scheme of things.

Underneath is the door for the microSIM, proprietary HDMI port, microSD, and that Galaxy S2 battery.

Over on the battery side of things, Samsung is using its left over Galaxy S2 batteries, which don’t have as much juice as their S3 counterparts, the very batteries designed for the massive 4.8 inch screen and quad-core chip, not including the camera section itself.

Because of this, you don’t get a lot of juice from a single charge, especially if you’re sending images and videos from your camera to the web or using the big touchscreen often.

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Price (RRP)

$599

Pros & Cons

Product Pros

Great combination of technology; You can use it to send and receive SMS; Macro ability is actually decent; Long lens;

Product Cons

Battery life is poor; Reasonbly bulky; Not exactly the fastest camera to switch on; Proprietary HDMI port; Many apps aren't really designed for a camera with optical zoom; Can send texts, but not make phone calls;

Ratings

Overall

Features

Value for money

Performance

Ease of Use

Design

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