Samsung SH100 Review

4.0
June 10, 2011 | Gavin Stoker |

Image Quality


All of the sample images in this Review were taken using the 14 megapixel SuperFine JPEG setting, which gives an average image size of around 3Mb.

When it comes to image quality the SH100 suffers some familiar bugbears, including some softening of detail towards the edges of frame at maximum 26mm equivalent wideangle setting and also some obvious pixel fringing between areas of high contrast. Also, results can be a little soft when shooting handheld at maximum 130mm equivalent telephoto.  Colours are for the most part however are vibrant and well saturated even when it's completely left to Smart Auto mode to deliver the goods. Thus this is a camera you can truly point and shoot with until the cows come home, and get results that will require little if any adjustment by most of the SH100's would-be users.

For lower light shooting the Samsung offers a range stretching between ISO80, so starting lower than most, and topping out at ISO3200, so reasonably modest by today's standards whilst at the same point being perfectly acceptable for its class. Having said that we're noticing noise as low as ISO200, albeit only on very close inspection, when ISO400 would usually be the lowest setting at which we'd expect to start seeing a grainy texture to shadow detail. By ISO800, the gritty look has extended across the entire image, though not to such an extent that would make this setting unusable. It is slightly disappointing however, as it appears similar to the kind of look we'd normally expect at ISO1600 or ISO3200. As a result then we'd argue that the highest two settings are to be avoided - and, with a chance to examine our test samples here - you probably won't want to disagree.

So, in common with most cheaper models, the SH100 is a camera that only really excels in ideal conditions - blue skies and plenty of light.

Noise

There are 7 ISO settings available on the Samsung SH100. Here are some 100% crops which show the noise levels for each ISO setting.

ISO 80 (100% Crop)

ISO 100 (100% Crop)

   

ISO 200 (100% Crop)

ISO 400 (100% Crop)

   

ISO 800 (100% Crop)

ISO 1600 (100% Crop)

   

ISO 3200 (100% Crop)

 
 

Focal Range

The Samsung SH100's 5x zoom lens offers a versatile focal range, as illustrated by these examples:

26mm

130mm

Sharpening

Here are two 100% crops which have been Saved as Web - Quality 50 in Photoshop. The right-hand image has had some sharpening applied in Photoshop. The out-of-the camera images are a little soft and ideally benefit from some further sharpening in a program like Adobe Photoshop. You can also change the in-camera sharpening level.

Original (100% Crop)

Sharpened (100% Crop)

   

Chromatic Aberrations

The Samsung SH100 handled chromatic aberrations fairly well during the review, with some purple fringing present around the edges of objects in high-contrast situations, as shown in the examples below.

Example 1 (100% Crop)

Example 2 (100% Crop)

Macro

The Samsung SH100 offers a Macro setting that allows you to focus on a subject that is 5cms away from the camera when the lens is set to wide-angle. The first image shows how close you can get to the subject (in this case a compact flash card). The second image is a 100% crop.

Macro Shot

100% Crop

Flash

The flash settings on the Samsung SH100 are Auto, Auto & Red-eye reduction, Fill-in flash, Slow sync, Flash Off, and Red-eye fix. These shots of a white coloured wall were taken at a distance of 1.5m.

Flash Off - Wide Angle (26mm)

Auto - Wide Angle (130mm)

ISO 64 ISO 64
   

Flash Off - Telephoto (26mm)

Auto - Telephoto (130mm)

ISO 64 ISO 64

And here are some portrait shots. As you can see, neither the Auto setting or the Red eye fix option caused any red-eye.

Auto

Auto (100% Crop)
   

Red eye fix

Red eye fix (100% Crop)

Night Shot

The Samsung SH100's maximum shutter speed is 8 seconds in the Night scene mode, which is good news if you're seriously interested in night photography. The shot below was taken using a shutter speed of 6 seconds at ISO 80.

Night Shot

Night Shot (100% Crop)

Entry Tags

hd video, hd, 3 inch LCD, compact, review, 720p, hdmi, beginner, wi-fi, wireless, 5x zoom, 14 megapixel, touch-screen, wifi, touch screen, touch, Samsung SH100 Review, SH100

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