WiFi is everywhere these days – in coffee shops, on buses, and even built into cameras. Samsung’s SH100 is one of the first examples of these to become available locally, providing users with the ability to cameras to email photos without the aid of a computer.
Samsung’s SH100 is a compact design with a 14.2 megapixel sensor and an interesting gimmick: the ability to connect to a wireless network and send photos and videos directly from the camera to email addresses and select social networking sites.
To do this, Samsung has equipped the SH100 with a wireless chip supporting 802.11 b/g/n networks. With WiFi onboard, the camera can stream files to compatible DLNA devices (such as phones, PCs and TVs) over a wireless home network.
A hard connection is also provided on the side of the camera, allowing you to charge the battery and move files to and from the camera using the proprietary connection found on other Samsung compact cameras.
Outside of its networking capabilities, the SH100 sports 14.2 megapixel CCD image capture, a 5x optical lens (4.7–23.5mm, roughly equivalent to 26–130mm), 720p video capture and low-light sensitivity support up to ISO 3200.
Controls on the SH100 are, for the most part, accessed via the 3 inch rear touchscreen, though there are some physical buttons. These include power and shutter buttons on the top side, a zoom toggle surrounding the shutter, a playback button behind the shutter on the back, and a home menu button on the rear next to the touchscreen.
On the bottom side of the camera is a tripod mount and a door that conceals the battery and microSD card compartment.
Performance – the good
The 3 inch touchscreen doubles as the viewfinder and operations interface and, for the most part, it’s responsive to the finger, working reasonably quickly when we selected icons to change settings, such as ISO, flash, and focusing modes.
On the rear of the camera is the home button, one of the SH100’s few physical buttons. Press this and you’re presented with a few screens of options for switching into different control modes: automatic, program, scenes, vignetting, photo editing, creative filters, voice recorder and web uploads.
The image quality isn’t the best we’ve seen, but the SH100 is capable of producing decent quality images. Shooting up close in a macro mode revealed some sharp foreground, while everyday pictures taken outside yielded good colours. The camera seems as capable as other compacts we’ve tested, with reasonably quick focusing, but the automatic modes aren’t as strong other cameras.
While the SH100 provides a 14 megapixel sensor, you can choose to capture images as smaller files, allowing you to capture images in the standard square-ish 4:3 screen size or formats that take up a full widescreen display: a 12 megapixel setting produces a 16:10 image while 10 megapixels displays at a 16:9 aspect ratio.
Samsung’s creative filters are probably one of the better features of the SH100, with lots of playfulness to be found among the photo and movie filters. These include the ability to apply effects to photos and video that that mimic sepia, fish eye, miniature and sketch finishes.