Review: SAMSUNG PL210

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By M.R. Gavin

Samsung has always churned out impressive cameras, whether in a phone, point-and shoots or even DSLRs. Photos come out clear and crisp; it’s as if there is a Photoshop application inside the camera.

The PL210 is no exception to the great camera lines that Samsung has launched for gadgeteers. If you want a compact camera that has DSLR features, this one is for you. Its 14.2-megapixel resolution and 27mm wide angle and 10-times optical zoom make it perfect for outdoor photos.

We all know how shaky our hands can be and this usually ruins the shot. The PL210 offers a Dual Image Stabilization feature that comes combined with Optical Image Stabilization, giving users sharper images no matter how you take your photo. I’ve tried using this in low light and even while on zoom, the anti-shake feature still works.

I always complained about my past digital cameras have really small screens as it makes it difficult to see if the photos were fine or blurred. The PL210 has a 3-inch display that has environmental illumination technology that adjusts LCD brightness for good viewing even under the sun. Its 720p HD video recording capability captures 30 frames per second and allows a really long record time. You could also use the zoom function even while recording a video.

Users could also put special effects on their photos using the Magic Frame feature, although there are not much templates to choose from. Customers, however, may still opt to use another feature that adds different effects to your images, such as those you can find in entry-level DSLRs like Vignette, Half-Tone Dotto, Vivid and Soft Focus.

Like most cameras, this Samsung has a Smart Face Recognition feature that can detect as many as 20 faces, making them clearer and more detailed. It also has a range of shooting modes. This can also be your ultimate on-the-go media tool because it can record conversation for up to 10 hours.

My only issue here is that shutter lag is a bit long. For an impatient user, this could be a downer.  Also, the default high-resolution file size mode can create a bit of a problem, especially when you need to send the files electronically. Users might need to shrink or resize the files for easy uploading,

Samsung probably has the most value-for-money camera products in the market today and the PL210 is no exception. It can be a point-and-shoot substitute for those bulky SLR cameras.

Specifications:
Megapixel Count: 14.5 Mega pixel
Zoom and Optics: 1.0X ~ 5.0X(Optical x Digital : 50.0X), Play mode : 1.0X ~ 13.5X
Physical Dimensions: 100.4 x 58.5 x 19.7mm
Weight: 148g
Memory Media: Micro SD

What’s Hot:
 • SLR-like photo quality (14.5mp)
• Pocket size
• A range of shooting modes

What’s Not:
 • Lagging after shots
• Hard to press navigation buttons

Bottomline:

The Samsung PL210 is your ultimate substitute to a DSLR camera

Buy Meter: 8.5

[This review originally appeared in the June 2011 issue of Gadgets Magazine]