Overall Rating:


Samsung EX1



Price as Reviewed:


With the widest maximum aperture on the compact camera market and a set of features to rival a DSLR, Samsung’s EX1 wants to be the best enthusiast compact around.

LCD, Viewfinder, Live View and Video

Samsung EX1

The Samsung EX1 does not feature an optical viewfinder, so we are left to rely entirely on the camera’s rear, 3in, AMOLED hinged display. Although I prefer a viewfinder in an SLR-style camera, not having one here didn’t really bother me.

The screen provided is good and is not difficult to see even in bright conditions.

The main point, however, is that with an aperture of f/1.8 it is somewhat more important than usual to be able to see exactly where the camera intends to focus – and no optical viewfinder in a compact camera can display such information.

The histogram display is too useful to ignore, as is information regarding apertures, compensation and shutter speed, and as optical viewfinders can’t show these I would have hardly used one had it been provided.

I can’t quite remember whether it was Samsung that was first to bring HD video to the compact camera world, but it is certainly difficult now to buy a Samsung camera that does not feature it. So it’s a little odd, then, that the EX1 has a relatively primitive video mode, offering a resolution of only 640×480 pixels. If you are not especially interested in video it hardly matters, and neither is it a feature to distinguish the EX1 from the G11 as they both run the same resolution.

  • Video: VGA 30/15fps, MPEG 4
  • AF Assistance: Yes, built-in lamp
  • Built-in Flash: Yes – max range 6.2m, with ±1EV compensation
  • White Balance: Auto, 6 presets, plus 1 custom, fine adjustment along amber/blue, green/magenta axis and Kelvin values
  • Memory Card: SD and SDHC, plus 22MB internal memory
  • Viewfinder Type: Optional optical device
  • Output Size: 3648x2736 pixels
  • White Balance Bracket: No
  • LCD: 3in AMOLED VGA vari-angle screen
  • Sensor: CCD with 10 million effective pixels
  • Hotshoe: Yes
  • Max Flash Sync: 1/750sec (built-in flash), 1/180sec hotshoe flash
  • Weight: 356g (without battery or card/s)
  • Exposure Modes: Program, aperture priority, shutter priority, manual plus 12 scene modes
  • Power: Rechargeable SLB-11A Li-Ion battery
  • Lens: Schneider Kreuznach 5.2-15.6 (equivalent to 24-72mm on 35mm format)
  • File Format: Raw (swf) + JPEG simultaneously, JPEG
  • AF array: Multi-point AF, centre spot, selectable point
  • Shutter Speeds: 16secs-1/1500sec in 1/3EV steps
  • Drive Mode: Continuous mode available – no fps quoted
  • Colour Space: Adobe RGB, sRGB
  • ISO: 80-3200 in 1EV steps
  • Focusing Modes: Manual, single-shot, tracking, face detection
  • DoF Preview: No
  • Dimensions: 114.4x64.6x30mm
  • Metering System: Multi-pattern, centreweighted and spot
  • Connectivity / Interface: USB 2.0 Hi-Speed
  • Exposure Comp: ±2EV in 1/3EV steps
  • Compression: Three-stage JPEG
  • RRP: £399

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