Overnight in Singapore, Samsung  announced an advanced compact camera with a lens designed to yield better photos from low light shooting conditions.

A new ‘Smart’ camera for the company that practically invented the Smart TV category, the Samsung EX2F is a small compact camera with some advanced functionality for taking on rivals such as Panasonic’s LX7, Sony’s RX100, and Nikon’s recently announced P7700. 

Spec’d with a 12.4 megapixel sensor, low light sensitivity up to ISO 12,800, a 3.3x optical zoom (roughly equivalent to 24-80mm in 35mm film terms), built-in ND filter, and a 3 inch multi-angle AMOLED LCD, the EX2F is aimed at people who aren’t sure they need mirror-less interchangeable, but still want the sort of flexibility that a manual style camera offers.

Then there’s the real star of the show: an aperture of F1.4 when the lens is at its widest.

With the lens open that wide, more light can come in when the scene is darker, and more playful shots of people in focus with backgrounds soft and out of focus can be captured.

In fact, this journalist pretty much only shoots with two lenses on his big camera, and one of those is of the F1.4 variety, as this generally offers the most amount of light and control for night time shooting.

Whether that’s the way the EX2F is remains to be seen, but initial impressions from its launch last night were good.

The camera is encased in a magnesium chassis which makes it have a strong sturdy feeling, and several control wheels – one on the front, one on the back, and two mode selector dials –  even make it possible to use the EX2F like a manual camera without any great learning curve.

Full HD video recording is possible from the camera, as has practically become a standard throughout the industry, but there’s also WiFi built in, which is a feature that Samsung has begun to really support strongly, as we saw with a recent camera announcement from the company.

WiFi is more than just sharing your images to Facebook and Flickr as it has been in the past, with apps being released to both iOS and Android that not only let you send the photos and movies to your smartphone or tablet, but also allow you to use these devices as a large remote control viewfinder for the camera over wireless.

We’ll have more on the camera when we get back to Australia and have a good play, but until then we can tell you that the EX2F will be hitting store shelves in September for a competitive $549 RRP.