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Old Apr 20, 2007, 4:01 PM   #1
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I'm new to this forum and this is my first post since I joined this forum 3 minutes ago.

I'm keen to buy a Samsung digital Camera -- either the L60 or S850 -- for one main reason -- video clips. I'm interested in a digital camera which will offer me decent still AND video pictures.

The L60 or S850cameras feature MPEG-4 quality video clips,as a result of which, lengthy video clips can be recorded on comparatively shortermemory space that other formats offered in other cameras.

Now, howis the quality of video clips available on the S850 or L60?Are they sufficiently clear enough to be viewed on a 21"-29" TV? If the quality is below average, can one improve the quality of MPEG-4 video clips using some software?

Can someone tell me if MPEG-4 is a preferable format or should I switch to another format, as offered by other camera manufacturers.

Please let me know as soon as possible as I'm planning to buy a camera in the near future.

Many thanks,

Melvyn

Goa-India
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Old Apr 22, 2007, 11:32 PM   #2
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I got the L60 and just bought the L73 (which I returned)

I think the L60 takes very nice pictutures and the video is nice too. The problem with the video is that the sound is NOT good at all. its muffled and theres some weird noises going on in the background in every video. Also, the low light (inside with lights on) is very grainy and pretty much worthless.
The l73 was a much worse in every asepect.

My Kodak v530 has much sharper video and the sound is amazing! nice deep base and crisp highs. Low light is VERY GOOD as well. A much nicer video mode then either of the Samsungs.
but consider the kodak uses h.264 codec vs the mpeg4. and the video size is about 500k/sec vs samsungs 300k/sec.

my opinion,
for video stick with Casio, Kodak or Sanyo upright cams like the C6/CA6.
Good luck!
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Old Apr 23, 2007, 1:51 AM   #3
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Thanks, AbsoluteZero, for your post. The reason why I didn't consider the Kodak or Sanyowas due to the absence of service facilities in myhome town in India. and Casio was comparatively higher in price than the Samsung. Since I didn't want to buy a Casio by turning intoa pauper, I thought of the samsung. OK, so the picutres may not be in the league of a Canon or a Nikon, but hey, as someone oncesaid in a website, cameras are not meant to duplicate reality -- that's the job of a scanner! Cameras, I think, are meant to add their own perspective to reality, just as our eyes.

I would like a camera to capture decent moving and still images with the minimum of fuss and technique.

Regards,

Melvyn
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Old Apr 26, 2007, 3:37 PM   #4
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I bought a S850 yesterday to try. The video is ok but the colors are not accurate although there are RGB color settings you can change. I lowered the green and it did make a difference with a still pic. Don`t know if it applies to video. I did`nt bother to read the manual. Did`nt want to mess it up since I had planned to return it when I bought it.

It takes loooong videos at640 x 480 @ 20 fps it will record for 1 hour 2 minutes on a 1 GB card. Zoom works when filming and there is no motor noise heard in playback.

The still pics are good. Camera will not focus well when batteries get low.

850 has many features for a cutrate price camera

I think the camera is too small though ,for most men. Plus the shutter button is nearly at the end of the camera.

When the price drops after a few months I may buy one.
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Old Apr 27, 2007, 12:51 AM   #5
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flymhi wrote:
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I bought a S850 yesterday to try. The video is ok but the colors are not accurate although there are RGB color settings you can change. I lowered the green and it did make a difference with a still pic. Don`t know if it applies to video. I did`nt bother to read the manual. Did`nt want to mess it up since I had planned to return it when I bought it.

It takes loooong videos at640 x 480 @ 20 fps it will record for 1 hour 2 minutes on a 1 GB card. Zoom works when filming and there is no motor noise heard in playback.

The still pics are good. Camera will not focus well when batteries get low.

850 has many features for a cutrate price camera

I think the camera is too small though ,for most men. Plus the shutter button is nearly at the end of the camera.

When the price drops after a few months I may buy one.
Thanks, flymhi, for your interesting post. In fact, I have shortlisted the S850 for the following reasons:

1. As you mentioned, the S850 appears to have many features for a budget camera.

2. In fact, the current price of about $185 in the USA isfar cheaper, were I to purchase it elsewhere.

3. The 5x optical zoom for a budget camera was another big plus, as most other camera feature a 3x optical zoom.

4. The reported movie mode of 800x590 @ 20 fps in the MPEG4 is also higher than other MPEG4 cameras that feature 640x480 @30 fps. As you said, the S850 promises a lengthy recording time on a 1 GB memory card.

Now, since you have tried the S850, could you let me know your detailed experience of the camera. You mentioned that the "Camera will not focus well when batteries get low." Isn't this obvious or is it a big drawback. What I would like to ask you is the following:

1. How is the build quality of the S850?

2. You mentioned that the S850 appears too small for men. The specifications, however, suggest that the S850 is larger than many slim cameras (like the T-series of the Sony or the Casio models).

2. You mentioned that the video is "OK". Did you try watching the movie clips on a 4:3 format TV (the normal CRT TV) or a 16:9 format TV? If so, were they sufficiently clear?

3. You mentioned "the colors are not accurate although there are RGB color settings you can change. I lowered the green and it did make a difference with a still pic." Somewhere later, you mentioned "The still pics are good." I'm a bit confused as the two sentences seem to be inconsistent. Could you please clarify if the still pictures are good or do they need some editing, before they pass off as good?

Hope you willshare more experienceson the SS850.

Many thanks,

Melvyn
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Old Apr 27, 2007, 6:16 PM   #6
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Melvyn,

I only played with the 850 for a couple of hours. This link may explain some of what I found. I posted it before posting here. The colors are good in these stills but there are no greens or reds as I recall. The amount of light may be a factor with the colors.

http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/re...ssage=22992071

I did`nt notice the focusing problem because the camera indicated a focus. I was comparing a pic of the top of a tree with 4 cameras. The 850 does not beep or anything when it focuses and it`s hard to see the bracket in the LCD change color.

I relaced the batteries and it was focusing ok.

The build is all plastic I believe. The lens can easily be moved around when extended. At 5x zoom it sticks out about 4 inches.

The camera is the smallest Ive ever handled. I`m 5'8 and have normal size hands I imagine. I wear a large size gloves. Trying to hold the camera in one hand and taking pics is a little difficult ,IMO. The shutter button is about 3/4 " from the end of camera making it a little difficult to get my finger on the button. You could easily drop it. Better use the wrist strap.

The video is ok considering the camera price. My Canon A610 is better but will only do 8 minutes on 1 gb.

Some colors are exaggerated like green and reds. The RGB adjustments might correct it, I did`nt try it with the video.

I intended to return the camera so I did`nt use it much. Did`nt want to dirty it up.

Another thing is ,in Continous mode the shutter goes off with the first pic and is silent after that. You can`t tell if you`re still taking pics or not.

The flash is ok in P mode and auto ISO . It lighted up a completely darken room 15 ft away. In Auto the red eye setting has a 1 second or more delay between the preflash and full flash.

Dave




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Old Apr 28, 2007, 8:45 AM   #7
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Hi Dave,

Yourmini-review on the S850 was, indeed, interesting. You mentioned that you tried recordingmovie clips on 640x480 @ 20 FPS. I am given to understand that the S850 can capture movie clips at even 800x590 @ 20 FPS. Did you try recording at this mode? I would think that movie clips would be sharper in this mode, as compared to your Canon A610. What do you think?

But then, I suppose that you may not have had the time to explore all features of the S850, given theshort time that you had with the camera.

Regards,

Melvyn
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Old Apr 28, 2007, 9:41 AM   #8
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Melvyn,

The first video I took was at the widest setting . Factory default I imagine. I really did`nt notice any difference in quality but then I was`nt looking for it.

Possibly the quality may be a little better at the wide setting since the image is bigger.

One other thing. The sound on video was sometimes a little garbled .

Here`s a single frame from the S850 @ 640 x 480.
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Old Aug 30, 2007, 3:34 AM   #9
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Melvyn,

I'm not sure if this would be available where you are or not (or if it is in your budget) but you might consider the Samsung SC-X300, which is an "upright" video camera that use's SD cards for memory (also has 1gb built in) and should fit the need you are looking for about perfectly.


For most people the MPEG-4 format will be just fine for viewing on a tv screen, especailly if it isn't an HD set (and even then will be ok). Realize however, that some people won't care for any image quality below HD levels and even then they find some to be better then others. What really matters is how the image looks to YOU, all the rest is irrelevant.
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Old Sep 3, 2007, 11:26 AM   #10
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Rotorflyr wrote:
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For most people the MPEG-4 format will be just fine for viewing on a tv screen, especailly if it isn't an HD set (and even then will be ok). Realize however, that some people won't care for any image quality below HD levels and even then they find some to be better then others. What really matters is how the image looks to YOU, all the rest is irrelevant.
I have to agree. It should be fine for most people, after all I have made good VCD's with a much lower resolution that have been perfectly acceptable to friends and family. These were viewed on a 27" TV and in one case a Projector TV. As Rotorflyr says, there will always be those, for whom, nothing below the very best will do, but it's irrelevant if you can't afford the best. I tend to find that once I become absorbed in the subject I notice the resolution of the video much less than if I am looking at a sample video merely looking for artifacts or problems.

I also believe that recording video with lesser quality video today is better than recording better quality in the future when you 'might' be able to afford it, simply because you can never recapture the past once it's gone.
The few samples that I did see from the MPEG4 Samsung cameras didn't look too bad to me, maybe not quiet as good as the Casio and Sanyos but still not bad for the price of the device.

One of the problems with Brands that are even a little bit of the 'mainstream' ie the more well know brands such as Canon, Casio etc. is that video clips are often hard to come by and this is particularly true of Hybrid cameras.

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