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I am currently still an owner of a Samsung DualView DV300F and this camera has been a fantastic purchase. It really does last, I have had this model for years and it has never let me down. This is one reliable camera. It has been with me to parties, On holiday all around the world (from road trips to Spain, to a backpacking holiday in Australia) this camera has seen it all and more importantly lasted through it all and I have never had one problem with this camera.
For people out there who aren't the great with gadgets, fear not, this is one easy to use camera! every function is easily marked out for you and there is a guide in case you are not 100%. The zoom function is brilliant it gives you an indication where the picture or video may not be at the best quality so it will keep you right when trying to find that perfect picture. The quality of the camera is brilliant, I have never had a problem with this, from photos of yourself to photos of landscape I think the quality is spot on!
What I love about this camera which will be a bonus for all you travellers out there is that it is very compact, so will fit in most bags and pockets so you never have to miss another picture opportunity.
The only disadvantage would be the memory card but if you are snap happy like myself I recommended a high GB memory card which you can buy cheap ones from Amazon or Ebay.
It is a great buy and would recommend it to anyone.
This is my new camera. I bought it about a month ago and although I haven't tried out all the features it comes with yet I have used it regularly and think it is really good and straight forward to use.
It cost me just over £100 which I think is a good price to pay. It has 16.1 mega pixels and a 4.5-22.5mm zoom.
One of my requirements when buying a camera was that it had to be something that was easy to ouse and compact so it could be in my bag without taking up lots of room. It also had to have a decent zoom and I think that this has.
This also has an LCD screen on the front of the camera which is really good, when you use it it shows the person you are taking a picture of what they are looking like. When you turn it off you can't even see that there was a screen there- it's like magic, my grandchildren love it! I must admit that I sometimes press the screen button instead of taking a photo sometimes as they are close together on the top of the camera!
This camera can connect to your social networks like Facebook. I haven't done this yet but I'm sure once I've sat down and read the instructions properly i will be able to work out how it is done. This works using WiFi. I always find it amazing how clever technology is now! I transfer photos to my computer using the wire, I am sure once I figure out the WiFi option it will be easer, however, I find the wire option straight forward enough and I didn't have to install any software or anything to be able to do so. When it is transferring photos it also charges too so I have found I've never had to plug it in to charge as the charge it gets whilst plugged into the laptop is enough!
I have used various settings on the camera such as applying certain colours like sepia mode and things and that's nice, it gives you a chance to play around with your photos a bit. You can edit them and change them once you've taken photos or you can change the mode with which you're shooting with.
Possibly my only criticism with this camera is that it sometimes focusses for a few seconds before taking a photo and this means that it may take 2 or 3 seconds before your photo is taken. Thiis may only seem like a short amount of time but seconds can be vital and you may miss what you were hoping to capture. Sometimes I have to press the button about 5 times before it takes as it seems to want to focus but then not actually take the picture. I'm not really sure why this is but it's rather frustrating.
The camera is nice and compact and it's 'easy to use. To take a photo you press the button on the top and the zoom is built onto this, you just use the side of your finger to operate it so you can hold this, zoom in and take a photo all using just one hand. It's great for that.
I think this is a great camera and I know it does so much more than what I've used it for so I'm looking forward to exploring all these other things soon.
I bought the Samsung DV300F about 8 months ago now after my previous Samsung decided one day that it wasn't going to retract its lens (I had worked it very hard, clocking up well over 15,000 photos in the 2 or so years I'd had it). I had seen this clever looking camera and the idea of having a dual view feature (i.e. a viewing screen on the front so you can see yourself when taking photos). You may think it's sad to purchase a camera partly based on this feature but there you go; that's me!
So I did a bit of research, reading around on technical review websites and didn't find anything negative about this 16-megapixel model so off I went credit card in hand to check out various online sites to buy my new toy. As luck would have it, Amazon was selling it at around £130 at the time, considerably cheaper than all other reputable sites (by reputable, I mean sites I'd actually heard of and that I would consider using). And with a whopping 16.0MP I just had to have this camera!
Anyway come the day my new camera arrived, I eagerly unpacked the box having been using my old faithful Canon Ixus 75 as back up in the meantime. I tend to take my camera with me to all social events and am somewhat known for being the "mad camera woman" and although most friends jokingly say this, they are very appreciative of the photos when I email them later, provide hard copies when I do prints once in a while or share on my online albums.
I digress! Taking my brand new shiny camera straight out of the box I noted that it looked not dissimilar to my most recent trusty camera, the Samsung IT100 (R.I.P)! It came with a USB lead which could be used with the AC adaptor plug provided or directly with your PC or laptop and several CD-ROMs for software installation.
I'm not really one for spending hours reading the manuals when I buy cameras or other electronic devices so I literally took the battery out of the plastic wrapping inserted it into the camera and tried to find the slot to insert the SD card. Imagine my horror when I discover that there was no slot for an SD card but only for a Micro SD card. I hadn't even considered this would be an issue, my last 4 or 5 digital cameras only having taken regular SC cards. I have half a dozen SD cards floating around at home ranging in size. I was not a happy bunny. Back online I went to order a 16Gb Micro SD card with reader which thankfully arrived in a couple of days so I didn't have to contain myself for too long (you may not understand this but for an amateur enthusiast like myself, not having access to a camera for more than a couple of days is akin to missing a limb)!
With my new micro SD loaded into the camera, I was clicking away at everything in sight. Luckily for me I have a husband who just loves having his photo taken so I had a willing victim for me to practice the different features of the camera on.
~ FRONT SCREEN ~
As mentioned earlier one of the features that really attracted me to the DV300F was its ability to take photos from the screen on the front of the camera itself which allows you see the photo you're about to take with the 1.5" screen. The Dual LCD feature allows you to take photos of yourself alone or within a group at close-up range when there's no one else around to take your photo. Of course there's also the self-timer mode which can be activated so you know just when to smile. I will be perfectly honest and say that this is the feature that actually least impressed me about the camera as taking photos of yourself should come out much better when you're able to see yourself whilst taking the photo. I haven't been able to take many clear photos indoors so far with this feature but outdoors in daylight this works much better. The auto flash feature just doesn't seem to want to work when using the front screen. So aside from not being that fabulous when using indoors what's actually good about the front screen? Well it's pretty discreet so unless you know it's there you won't know it's there if you know what I mean! When not in use the front screen is not visible (unless of course you choose to leave the sticker on the front outlining where the screen which is how it is presented when you unpack the box). Even though this is not one of the camera's best features, people still often comment on how cool it is to have the ability to take "selfies". TIP: selfies taken in natural light come out pretty well, where the flash is required, not so good.
There's also a very handy children mode which lets you play an animation on the front LCD to hold children's attention whilst you catch their best moments.
~ OPTIONS FOR SHOOTING ~
Ever wanted a camera which gives you lots of different options to frame photos or have your photos taken with different effects? Well the DV300F delivers in this area! The "Magic Frame" option includes 12 templates to use as a background for your photos! I love playing with this feature! The "Artistic Brush" feature allows you to apply an ink painting, sketch or cartoon effect to your photo and actually saves your original photo as well as the one taken with the "Artistic Brush" option. The "Funny Face" feature reminds me of those fun house mirrors you get at fun fairs (are they still around?) where part of your face is warped - the outcome never actually flattering but quite funny most of the time! Then there's the "Motion Photo" feature which allows you to click various frames and then choose which bits you want frozen/animated. I do like the feature which allows you to rotate your shots and remove red eye!
Within the Basic Mode there are various options to choose from as follows:
* Smart Auto - this allows the camera to select the best mode when taking shots and works very well. For example it switches between daylight and dim light photo capturing by automatically detecting the scene with 16 different shooting conditions.
* Program (auto exposure mode with automatically adjusted shutter speed and aperture value for the camera)
* Smart Movie - as per Smart Auto feature but in video mode
* Movie - regular video mode
* Scene - allowing you to select from Landscape, Sunset, Dawn, Backlight, Beach and Snow, Text
* Live Panorama - this cool feature allows you to take a Panoramic photo by slowly moving the camera from one side of a view to the other for a wide angle effect - easy to capture - just hold the shutter button down whilst moving from left to right or right to left
* Settings - within this option you have options for Sound (Volume, Beep Soun, Shutter Sound, Start Sound, AF Sound), Display (Start Image, Wallpapers, Guide line, Date/Time Display, Help Guide Display, Display Brightness and Quick View), Connectivity (Video Out, USB, PC Software), General (Device Info, Language, Time Zone, Date/Time Set, Date Type, Time Type, File No., Imprint, Auto Power off, AF Lamp, Format, Reset - allowing you to return settings to default)
Want to impress your friends on Facebook by sending photos straight from your camera to your Facebook albums? This is fairly straightforward to set up but a little bit time-consuming. For example, you need to set it up with the local wi-fi details (that's if you have them available in the first place) and then enter your email details for your Facebook account. Also you can send photos direct to email addresses, say if you're with someone who doesn't want to wait till you get home to be emailed the photo you can do this too (again ensuring you have the details to connect to local wi-fi). You can also use this feature to share photos via MobileLink, TV Link, Cloud or Social Sharing which includes Picasa, YouTube and Photobucket. The Auto Backup feature within the Wi-Fi section allows you to transfer photos and videos to wirelessly to a PC.
Within scene you can choose from Picture in Picture, Self Shot, Children, Jump Shot, Beauty Shot, Intelligent Portrait, Night Shot and Close-up Shot.
Here you can choose a variety of fun features such as Magic Frame, Funny Face, Photo Filter, Movie Filter, Split Shot, Artistic Brush and Motion Photo, some of these features I've already discussed above in Options for Shooting.
The Photo Filter allows you choose from Miniature, Vignetting, Ink Painting, Oil Painting, Cartoon, Cross Filter, Sketch, Soft Focus, Fish Eye, Old Film, Half Tone Dot, Classic, Retro, Zooming Shot.
Split shot enables you to take 2 or 3 photos in one frame such as 2 x horizontal and 2 x vertical and 3 x horizontal and 3 x vertical. You can create some amusing and creative images by taking a photo of the same person 3 times, e.g. facing left, front and right!
Here you can select Album or Photo Editor. The Album feature allows you to see thumbnail versions of your photos on the screen to easily scroll through to view the photo you want. Within Photo Editor you can choose to Rotate, apply a Smart Filter, and amend Brightness or Contrast, Saturation, ACB (Auto Contrast Balance), Face Retouch and Red-eye Fix.
THE REAL OPINION
I could go on for hours discussing the features of this camera and bore those of you who don't really care about the full range of features to sleep but I think I'll just skip to what I really think of the Samsung DV300F. Firstly, for those of you, who may be like me and want to get a camera out of the box and just start taking photos, this is a good option. You can figure out the different features fairly easily without having to resort to spending hours going through the manual.
As an everyday camera for an amateur enthusiast happy to use an easy to carry digital camera this is a little gem. Taking photos in daylight is a doddle. Crisp and clear photos are easily achieved. With the range of features available, it's really easy to impress friends and family with the different type of background you can choose, hey, who of those that enjoys having their photo taken won't enjoy seeing themselves on a magazine or newspaper cover and due to the high resolutions available, these can make fabulous gifts for people if you want to print these off later. I can honestly say I've had people saying they're not keen on being snapped and when I've talked them into it and shown them their face on a billboard, they've not failed to ask me to email them the photos later! Good selling point eh?
What I'm not overly keen on is the front LCD which doesn't do too well indoors or in dimly lit environment. You have to hold awfully still to get a decent photo and I actually always find it easier to click at random towards myself and a friend or two using the rear LCD and achieve much better results.
The DV300F is not so clever at taking distance shots indoors in the evenings. If you're at a wedding or function and not seated near the front, you'll struggle to get a decent photo with the Smart Auto setting even though it's supposed to automatically select night mode. You WILL have to play around with different features to find just the right setting (which I have to admit I've not managed to find a decent enough setting yet to say this works)!
I'd point out here that I've taken 5 or 6 short videos and well over 500 photos on one charge of the battery so battery life is definitely very decent. This has been the case whether using over one occasion (one day) or over several days use (e.g. on holiday). To fully re-charge the battery takes only a matter of an hour or so.
Overall I'm rating the Samsung DV300F a strong 4 out of 5 stars. It suits my purposes generally to a tee and I've definitely given it a good testing over the last 7 or 8 months I've owned it. The even better news is that this is available at an even lower price now than when I bought it - I've seen it advertised online for less than £80 which is a real bargain.
WHAT'S IN THE BOX?
I thought I'd leave this bit (and the technical specs) till near the end so as not to bore those who are not interested in all the bits and bobs that come with the camera, so here's the list:
* Camera (hopefully that's obvious)
* USB Cable
* AC Adapter
* Quick Start guide
* Manufacturer's 12 month warranty
* Wrist strap
* BP88 rechargeable battery
* CD ROM instruction manual
* CD ROM Intelli-studio software
And now for the complicated bits for those who want to know the nitty gritty regarding the technical specifications:
Dimensions (W x H x D): 95.2 x 56.5 x 18.3(20.0)mm
Weight: 120g (without battery and memory card)
Main LCD: 3"(7.62cm), 460K TFT LCD
Front LCD: 1.5"(3.8cm) 61K TFT LCD
Rechargeable battery: BP88
Connector Type: Micro USB
ISO Equivalent: Auto, 80, 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600, 3200
Modes: Smart Auto, Program, Scene, Live Panorama, Self Shot, Picture-in-Picture, Magic Frame, Funny Face, Artistic Brush, Photo Filter, Beauty Shot, Motion Photo, Jump Shot, Children, Intelligent Portrait, Night Shot, Split Shot, Close up
1/2.3" (Approx. 7.76mm) CCD Image sensor
Metering: Face Detection AE, Multi, Spot, Center Weighted
Samsung 5x Zoom Lens f = 4.5~22.5mm (35mm film equivalent: 25~125 mm)
Digital Zoom: Still Image mode: 1.0X ~ 5.0X (Optical x Digital : 25X)
TTL auto focus (Multi AF, Center AF, Face Detection AF, Object Tracking AF)
Range: Normal: 80cm ~ infinity (Wide), 250cm ~ infinity (Tele)
Macro: 5cm~80cm (Wide), 100cm ~ 250cm (Tele)
Auto Macro: 5cm~Infinity (Wide), 100cm~ Infinity (Tele)
Modes: Auto, Auto & Red-eye reduction, Fill-in flash, Slow sync, Flash off, Red eye fix
Range: Wide: 0.2m ~ 4.1m (ISO Auto), Tele : 0.5m ~ 1.6m (ISO Auto)
Image Display: Single image, Thumbnails, Advanced Slide Show, Movie Clip, Smart Album
Storage: Micro SD Card (up to 2GB guaranteed)/ Micro SDHC (up to 8GB guaranteed)/ SDXC (up to 64GB guaranteed)
File Formats: Still Image: JPEG(DCF), EXIF 2.21, DPOF 1.1, PictBridge 1.0, MPO
Movie Clip: MP4 (Video: MPEG4.AVC/H.264, Audio: AAC)