Samsung’s ST550 is a rather innovative point-and-shoot compact camera as it features both a front and back LCD. The idea is to make self shots and timed group pics easier to compose. With the ST550, standing with arm outstretched and looking silly – just to end up with snapshot of just half your head in front of the Tour Eiffel …
I loved the commentator on CNET who noted that, previously, some brand had put a mirror on the front of a camera and that didn't sell so who would buy the Samsung ?
He later corrected himself saying that he'd learned that girls of the Facebook inclination spent a lot of time taking self-portraits.
Really Samsung have your designers nothing better to do ?
I know I'm rare among the geeks on here (grin!)
... but I have a girlfriend!
And sometimes it's nice to get a picture of the two of you together (behave back there!) in front of the Eiffel Tower, or at a restaurant without worrying that that dodgy geezer you've handed the camera to is about to do a runner with your photographic memories (a la National Lampoon's European Vacation!)
Also, for those of you who don't have a girlfriend handy, sometimes you do want to take a good picture of yourself, better than the webcam in your netbook permits, and it's much easier when you can see what you're doing/what the final picture will look like ... and if it does a nice "3..2..1" countdown in big friendly digits, so much the better!
It's a pity the photographic quality seems not to be fantastic, otherwise this camera would be at the top of my wishlist to travel with me as a backup to the D-SLR or just as a camera to have in the side pocket of my daypack/computer bag for day to day snapping (better than most cameraphones anyway!)
Paris because that's where the Eiffel Tower is (and she has spent a fair time in front of the camera too!)
Umm, what was that about having to invest in another type of memory card?, most phones and other devices already use Micro SD, and its quite cheap.
Its more of a pain for most people I suspect to have to buy a special camara memory type than a joe blogs off the shelf micro SD.
Think of it this way, I can take a pic of my self, or me and a group of pals on holiday, switch the SD card into my phone, and upload it (facebook, Photobucket....so on). Now I do not know what sorta format the video is recorded in, but might you beable to upload that to utube?... in HD?
Just my tuppence worth.
I think it's mostly historical ...
... in the "bad" old days, memory chips were expensive ... so if you'd bought a massive 256Mb memory card for hundreds of pounds, it was a real pain if your next camera used a different format card.
I remember the thrill of buying a 512Mb SD card from Jessops and getting the price down to £99 (wow!) but of course a 2Mp digital camera could get a fair few pics on 512Mb.
Now that the price of a 4Gb card is £10 or less, it's a lot less of an issue ...
... of course my laptop has an SD card slot (as does my DVD player at home) so I'd need to carry the microSD->SD adapter with me to make viewing/copying the images easy, but that's hardly much of a hassle, especially since one of my current SD card using devices is actually using a microSD card in the adapter as it was cheaper to buy it that way than a full size SD card.
I didn't read the full article, so I don't know, but if the front display works in video mode, then it makes the camera excellent for recording band rehearsals, solo music works etc. as you can look up and see what's in the camera's view :-)
MicroSD? Could be worse
..at least people are likely to use those/have readers, unlike bloody Memory Stick. My phone, the flash card in my DS, and a few other things use MicroSD, so I have readers kicking about.
Obviously, I'd prefer plain old SD in a camera, though.
Have the cheaper ST500 and the touch screen cracked after being in my (front) pants pocket on a car journey. The LCD was fine but the touch screen seems to be a layer on top of it and it was completely cracked after being pressured against my keys in my pocket. I've never had that problem with any other touch screen device I've owned. Less then a month old but of course the warranty didn't cover it, despite a pocket camera not surviving it first trip in my pocket.
Many thanks but
I commented on the importance of shutter lag about five camera reviews ago. Since then each review has included a subjective comment, as here 'little shutter lag' .
This is not very helpful. Especially as all sample shots that I have seen are static subjects.
I have explored the potential for measurement. I put a microphone on my camera then recorded and analysed using Audacity. Easy !
The result shows a five year old Kodak Z740 has a lag of 0.37 sec . It is impossible to use the camera for action.
Recordings with and without flash appear identical. I will assemble a stereo input giving one channel to a photodetector.
So, with total respect, I suggest that the hard working Register team of camera reviewers do the same and then report the numbers.
If you want my results to see, and hear, for yourself then please let me know.
For many people, they will never unplug the memory card and they will use the USB cable to transfer to their PC. Though I did see one user slightly flumoxxed by microSD at a Kodak instant print booth.
Though I wonder how many shots there will be of kids howling in fear at the evil clown picture :)