Samsung NV7 Review
Review Date: November 22nd 2006
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The Samsung NV7 is part of Samsung's new NV range of compact digital cameras. Offering 7.2 megapixels, a 7x zoom lens equivalent to 38-270mm, optical image stabilisation, ISO 100-1000 and and a 2.5 inch LCD screen, the Samsung NV7 certainly looks very appealing on paper. The NV7 also has a very different user interface to most digicams, which utilizes a touch-sensitive smart button system to make its menu system more accessible. The Samsung NV7 offers a full range of creative shooting modes for the more experienced photographer and 11 scene modes for the beginner. Part of Samsung's Lifestyle range, the NV7 is made from a stylish brushed black metal, has a built-in pop-up flash unit, accepts 43mm filters and can be used with an optional docking cradle. Samsung have made a lot of noise recently about grabbing a much larger share of the digital compact market, but can the NV7 help them to achieve that aim? Discover the answer now by reading our extensive review.
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The Samsung NV7 has a 7.4 megapixel, 1/2.5 inch CCD that delivers 7.2 effective megapixels. There are a range of different image sizes on offer (7M : 3072X2304 pixels, 5M : 2688X2016 pixels, 3M : 1920X1440 pixels, 1M : 1024X768 pixels), which can be recorded as either Super Fine, Fine or Normal quality JPEGs. The camera's 7x optical zoom lens is equivalent to a 38-270mm lens on a 35mm format camera. There is also a 5x digital zoom should you feel the need to use it. The Samsung NV7 has a mechanical Optical Picture Stabilization mode and also an Advanced Shake Reduction mode that helps to deliver sharper pictures free from handshake. The camera has 19Mb internal memory and also supports SD Memory Cards and MultiMedia Cards (not supplied).
The Samsung NV7 offers Program AE, Shutter Priority AE, Aperture Priority AE and Manual Exposure exposure modes plus 11 different scene modes (Night, Portrait, Children, Landscape, Text, Close-up, Sunset, Dawn, Backlight, Fireworks, Beach & Snow). The maximum aperture is f2.8 (wide) – f4.0 (tele), and the shutter speed range is 15 secs. – 1/1500 sec. There are 5 ISO speeds ranging from 100 to 1000 and an Auto option. There are 6 different White Balance presets to choose from (Daylight, Cloudy, Fluorescent_H, Fluorescent_L, Tungsten, Custom), plus an Auto setting. The camera offers exposure compensation in ± 2 in 1/3 EV steps, auto-bracketing and an auto-exposure lock is also available. The Samsung NV7 offers 3 different exposure metering options - Multi, Center and Spot.
The Samsung NV7 has a normal shooting mode, Self-timer (2 secs. or 10 secs.), Double self timer (2 secs. and 10 secs.) and 2 different Continuous modes (Continuous, H.Continuous). Sharpness can be adjusted in 3 levels (Soft, Normal, Vivid). There are also 6 different colour effects available (B&W, Sepia, Red, Green, Blue, Negative Composite,) and you can apply Frames and GIF animations. The Super Macro setting allows you to focus on subjects that are as close as 1cm. The built-in flash offers 5 different modes (Auto, Auto & Red-eye reduction, Fill-in, Slow sync, Flash off). The flash range is 20cm - 5.8m at the wide-angle lens setting and 60cm - 4.0m at tele-photo and it takes 5 seconds to recharge between shots.
To compose your images, you can use the LCD monitor - there is no optical or electronic viewfinder. The Samsung NV7 has a 2.5" color TFT LCD which has 230,000 pixels. The Samsung NV7 can record movies with sound at 640x480 or 320 x 240 pixels, either at 30 fps or 15 fps. Video is recorded in the AVI format and you can zoom in and out whilst recording a movie. The length of the video is only limited by the size of the memory card that you are using. You can also record a voice memo (up to 1 hour) or attach a voice clip to an image (10 secs.). The Samsung NV7 supports the DPOF (Digital Print Order Format) and PictBridge printing standards, and it connects to a computer via USB 2.0.
The Samsung NV7's dimensions are 106 (W) x 62.3 (H) x 35.7 (D) mm, and it weighs 245g without the battery and storage card fitted. The camera is powered by a rechargeable Lithium-ion Battery. There is a metal tripod mount in the bottom-right of the camera.
Finally, the standard box kit contains a Strap, USB Cable, AV cable, Lens Cap, Lithium-ion Battery, User Manual and a CD-ROM containing Samsung software (Storage Driver and Digimax Master). Note that you can only store 5 images at the highest quality JPEG setting on the 19Mb internal memory. You will therefore need to invest in some memory cards to store your images on.
PhotographyBLOG is a member of the DIWA organisation. Our test results for the Samsung NV7 have been submitted to DIWA for comparison with test results for different samples of the same camera model supplied by other DIWA member sites.