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Samsung's S850 digital camera. Courtesy of Samsung, with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins. Samsung announces S850 digicam
By Michael R. Tomkins, The Imaging Resource
(Wednesday, January 10, 2007 - 12:01 EST)

The Samsung S850 has - as you might guess from the name - a sensor resolution of eight megapixels coupled to a Samsung SHD-branded 5x optical zoom lens.

This provides a zoom range from 38mm - a moderate wide angle - to a useful 190mm telephoto, with maximum aperture varying from a fair F2.8 at wide angle to F4.4 at telephoto. Macro focusing is to a minimum of one centimeter at wide angle. The Samsung S850 also features a larger than average, high resolution 2.5" LCD display with 230,000 pixels, USB connectivity, 20MB of built-in memory, ISO sensitivity from 50 - 1600, shutter speeds from 15 - 1/2000 second, a fixed 4:3 aspect ratio, a maximum of 5x digital zoom and 12x playback zoom, and an MPEG-4 movie mode.

Other features include multi and spot metering, seven white balance modes, eleven scene modes, and a five-mode built in flash. Samsung's S850 stores images on Secure Digital cards (including the newer SDHC cards), or the previously mentioned built-in memory. Power comes courtesy of AA batteries (with alkaline disposables in the product bundles), and the included software is Samsung Digimax Master. The Samsung S1000 digital camera ships this Spring, priced at $200.

Samsung S850
Samsung's S850 digital camera. Courtesy of Samsung, with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins. Click for a bigger picture!
General
Camera Type Compact
Manufacturer Samsung
Model Number S850
Dimensions 4.1 x 2.5 x 1.0"
104.0 x 63.6 x 24.8mm
Weight 172.0 g
6.0 oz
Planned Price $199.99
Planned Availability 2007
Image Capture
Sensor Type 1/1.8" CCD
8.30 megapixels (total)
8.10 megapixels (effective)
Aspect Ratio 4:3
Image Dimensions 3264 x 2448 (8.0 megapixels)
3072 x 2048 (6.3 megapixels)
2816 x 1584 (4.5 megapixels)
2592 x 1944 (5.0 megapixels)
2048 x 1536 (3.1 megapixels)
1024 x 768 (0.8 megapixels)
1.9 megapixels
0.8 megapixels
Image Quality 3 levels
Image Preview / Review
Viewfinder No
LCD 2.5", 230,000 pixels
Playback Zoom 12.0x max
Lens
Lens Type Samsung SHD lens
5x optical zoom
Image Stabilization No
Focal Length 7.8 - 39.0mm (actual)
38 - 190mm (35mm equivalent)
Aperture Range f/2.8 (W) - f/4.4 (T) - f/??
Focusing System Contrast Detect with AF assist lamp
Manual Focus possible (0) steps
Focusing Range Normal: 33" - infinity (80 cm - infinity)
Macro: 0.4" - 33" (1 cm - 80 cm)
Exposure
ISO Sensitivity Auto, 50, 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600
Shutter Speed 15 - 1/2000 second
Exposure Modes Aperture, Shutter, Manual
Metering Modes Multi, Spot
Exposure Compensation +/- 2.0EV in 1/2EV increments
White Balance Image Sensor - Auto, Daylight, Cloudy, Fluorescent_H, Fluorescent_L, Tungsten, , Manual
Internal Flash Modes: Auto, Auto & Red-eye reduction, Fill-in flash, Slow sync, Flash off
Range: Wide : 0.2m - 3.0m, Tele : 0.5m - 2.5m (ISO AUTO)
Creative
Scene Modes Night, Portrait, Children, Landscape, Close-up, Text, Sunset, Dawn, Backlight, Fireworks, Beach & Snow
Digital Zoom 1.0x - 5.0x
Self Timer Yes, 2/10/2+10 seconds
Movie Format AVI (MPEG-4) with audio
800x592 and 720x480
Max. frame-rate: 20 frames per second
Storage
Recording Medium SD/MMC, Built-in, SDHC
File System Complies with Design Rule for Camera File System (DCF)
File Format JPEG
Connectivity
Video Yes, NTSC / PAL switchable
Computer USB 2.0 Full (LOW) Speed
Other DC input
Power
Battery Type Alkaline disposable, NiMH rechargeable
Battery Form Factor 2 x AA
Product Bundle
Software Digimax Master
Battery / Charger 2 x AA Alkaline disposable battery
Flash Memory 20.0MB Internal
Other
Digital Print Order Format (DPOF) compliant Yes
PictBridge Compliant Yes
Internal Microphone Yes
Internal Speaker Yes
More Photos
Samsung's S850 digital camera. Courtesy of Samsung, with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins. Click for a bigger picture!
Samsung's S850 digital camera. Courtesy of Samsung, with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins. Click for a bigger picture!
Samsung's S850 digital camera. Courtesy of Samsung, with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins. Click for a bigger picture!
Samsung's S850 digital camera. Courtesy of Samsung, with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins. Click for a bigger picture!
Samsung's S850 digital camera. Courtesy of Samsung, with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins. Click for a bigger picture!
Samsung's S850 digital camera. Courtesy of Samsung, with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins. Click for a bigger picture!
 

Original Source Press Release:

Samsung S850 Puts Professional Quality and Functionality in Stylish, Affordable Point & Shoot Package

Las Vegas, NV (January 7, 2007) -- Samsung Camera is pleased to introduce the Samsung S850 compact point-and-shoot digital camera. With an 8.0 mega-pixel image sensor, a host of advanced capabilities and a 5x optical zoom lens, the S850 is the ideal camera for photographers seeking a compact, full-featured digital camera at a highly accessible price point of $199.99.

With shutter speeds that reach up to an effective 1/2000 sec and an ISO equivalent of 1600, users will be able to take advantage of the S850’s high image resolution in many demanding settings, including low-light and while shooting fast moving subjects. Samsung’s proprietary ASR image stabilization system helps to reduce camera shake and image blur during longer exposures and in situations where holding the camera steady is impossible or a tripod is unavailable.

The S850 also offers Samsung’s Intelligent Face Recognition Technology, which detects the subject’s face and automatically adjusts auto focus and auto exposure to ensure the best possible image quality in portraits and other shots featuring people. The AF function instantaneously recognizes the faces of up to 9 subjects and accurately focuses on them all. The AE function then takes over, setting the appropriate exposure to ensure the highest image quality.

Despite its diminutive proportions and price point, the S850 offers a wealth of advanced features more commonly found among DSLRs and other professional-level products. With aperture priority, shutter priority and manual modes, continuous shooting and AEB, the Samsung S850 puts complete creative control right at the user’s fingertips. Its revolutionary Wise MF feature enlarges the center portion of the image in shooting mode, enabling the user to quickly and easily focus on the exact object or spot of their choosing.

The S850 features several dedicated modes for common-yet-difficult shooting situations including Children (with a high shutter speed to freeze motion while avoiding blur), Backlight (to compensate for a rear-lit subject), and Portrait (to bring the subject into strong focus while deemphasizing the background). A dedicated hot key brings up the camera’s Special Effect processing options, which include Photo Frame (users can choose one of several frames to border an image), Highlight (sharpens the foreground while softening the focus of the background) and Screen Splits (allows users to combine multiple images into a single file).

The S850’s robust in-camera image effects include conversion to sepia-tone and black-and-white. When enabled, Samsung’s Wise Shot feature automatically takes two consecutive pictures in rapid succession ­-- one with ASR enabled and one with the flash -- and prompts the user to review both and select the preferred version of the picture. A built-in microphone allows a 10-second voice memo to be attached to any still image. In addition, images can be trimmed, resized, and rotated in the camera without the use of a PC. Slide Show automatically scrolls through photos and displays them on the bright and vivid 2.5” TFT LCD screen, which automatically detects environmental illumination and adjusts its brightness for optimal image viewing.

The S850’s Movie mode enables users capture video in one of four resolutions, from 320x240 to 800x600, at up to 20 frames per second and encoded in AVI MPEG-4 format. Just as in still-picture mode, the S850’s image stabilization system can be engaged to compensate for unwanted camera movement and subject blur, and movie clips can be reviewed and edited directly in the camera. In addition, the S850’s Continuous Movie mode allows its operator to pause, then resume filming of video clips without having to save the clips as individual files.

The included USB 2.0 cable, and CD-ROM containing Samsung’s Digimax Master software (compatible with Windows 98/2000/ME/XP and Macintosh OS X 9.2 through 10.4) will get even beginning photographers up and shooting right out of the box.

The S850 contains 45 megabytes of internal memory, and can accept Secure Digital (SD) flash memory cards up to 4 gigabytes, and over 1,300 images can fit on a 256 megabyte card, depending on the selected image quality. Users can save images in one of 8 resolutions, ranging from 640x480 pixels all the way up to 3264x2448 pixels.

The Samsung S850 will be available in the spring of 2007.

Samsung Opto-Electronics America, Inc., Secaucus, N.J., is the U.S. subsidiary of Samsung Techwin Co., Ltd., Sungnam Kyungki-Do, Korea. Samsung Opto-Electronics markets a full line of auto focus cameras, zoom and digital cameras for the amateur as well as the professional under the Samsung brand name.

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