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The WB850F was released by Samsung in January 2012 and is a compact camera which packs in a 21x optical zoom lens, 16.2 megapixel BSI sensor as well as Wi-Fi connectivity and GPS. It is available in black, with prices starting at around £215.00.
There is also GPS with Live Landmark, a location-based augmented reality feature, lets you access information about points of interest right in front of you. You can also download maps and find your way with MapView. The Digital Compass lets you see which direction you’re facing and how far you are from your destination.
When shooting, you have the option to use Full Manual mode, meaning you can set the aperture and/or shutter speed. Live Panorama means you can take 180º panoramic images, viewing it on the screen during recording. To take more unusual and creative pictures you can turn to Artistic Brush mode, which includes cartoon, sketch and ink painting. Other shooting modes include Picture in Picture Shot, HDR and Split Shot.
Videos are recorded in full 1080p HD with stereo sound, the camera can be connected to a HD TV to watch them back. Dual Capture mode allows you to take six 10 megapixel images when recorded videos
- 16.2 megapixel BSI CMOS sensor
- 21x optical zoom lens (35mm equiv: 23 - 483mm)
- Dual IS (Optical + Digital Image Stabilisation)
- 3 inch VGA screen
- Built-in Wi-Fi and GPS
- Full 1080p video recording
- ISO 100-3200
- 5cm minimum focusing distance
- Live Panorama Mode
There are plenty of buttons, with the power button, zoom rocker and shutter released placed on the top of the camera, where you'll also find a mode dial and a switch which releases the pop-up flash. The flash needs to be pushed back to put it away again.
On the rear of the camera is a d-pad, this also acts as a rotating wheel, making it easier to toggle through the settings. Other buttons on the rear are the menu, fn, playback and delete button. The fn button allows you to change some shooting menus, such as ISO, exposure compensation, white-balance and more. The last button to mention is the dedicated movie record button, it has a lever surrounding it which allows you to change the speed of recording (30, 240 and 480 fps).
The menu system is easy to navigate, made much easier by the large number of buttons which mean you don't need to go through a number of menus to change basic settings. The 3 inch LCD screen is bright, clear and colourful, making it a pleasure to use when both shooting and looking back through your pictures.
The battery has a CIPA rating of 280 shots. Unfortunately we had to recharge the battery a number of times during testing as all too often we came back to it and the battery was dead. Usually this happens when the GPS is accidentally left on, but we can rule that out in this case.
We tested the camera's performance at focusing, shutter response, shot-to-shot time, continuous shooting etc. and have posted the results below. To test this we took 6 or more shots and calculated the average.
|Shutter Response||0.1 secs|
|Wide - Focus / Shutter Response
|Full zoom - Focus / Shutter Response||0.65 secs|
|Switch on Time to Taking a Photo||2.35 secs|
|Shot to Shot (without flash)||1.7 secs|
|Shot to Shot with Flash||3.4 secs|
|Continuous Shooting 3fps
|Continuous Shooting 5fps||5 fps|
|Continuous Shooting 10fps||10 fps|
All three continuous shooting modes record at full 16 megapixel resolution.
The main attractions when using the W-Fi are the ability to upload straight to Facebook and connecting to a smartphone to transfer pictures and use as a mobile viewfinder. It's all as simple as connecting to your Wi-Fi and following the on-screen instructions. To work with smartphones, you'll also need to download apps on those devices.
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Samsung WB850F Sample Photos
Portrait | 1/60 sec | f/3.9 | 16.5 mm | ISO 100
Landscape | 1/1000 sec | f/4.0 | 4.1 mm | ISO 100
HDR | 1/500 sec | f/4.0 | 4.1 mm | ISO 100
Pet Portrait | 1/125 sec | f/4.0 | 20.3 mm | ISO 100
Sample Photos - The WB850F takes pictures that are well exposed with excellent colour reproduction. Portraits have good skin tones and are free from red-eye when using the flash. Landscape mode allows you to shoot landscapes with superb blues and greens. HDR mode automatically combines three shots and the results are good.
Samsung WB850F Lens test images
Wide Angle | 1/500 sec | f/4.0 | 4.1 mm | ISO 100
Some Optical Zoom | 1/500 sec | f/4.8 | 38.6 mm | ISO 100
Full Optical Zoom | 1/250 sec | f/5.9 | 86.1 mm | ISO 100
Macro | 1/15 sec | f/3.0 | 6.2 mm
Lens Performance - Images have a good level of detail throughout the zoom range, but there is some purple fringing in contrasting areas. The lens has a minimum focusing distance of 5cm, which allows the camera to get close enough to take impressive macro shots.
Samsung WB850F ISO test images
ISO100 | 1/30 sec | f/3.6 | 11.4 mm
ISO200 | 1/45 sec | f/4.0 | 11.4 mm
ISO400 | 1/90 sec | f/4.0 | 11.4 mm
ISO800 | 1/180 sec | f/4.0 | 11.4 mm
ISO1600 | 1/350 sec | f/4.0 | 11.4 mm
ISO3200 | 1/750 sec | f/4.0 | 11.4 mm
ISO Noise Performance - There is no noise at ISO 100, with a little appearing at ISO 200. Again there is a small amount of extra noise at ISO 400, but it is not until you get to ISO 800 where you see images become a little softer. Images at ISO 1600 and 3200 show a significant loss in detail, these two settings are best used for sharing on the web, rather than for large prints.
These ISO shots do highlight some chroma noise which is visible in the mid to dark greys, with most other colours appearing fairly reasonable. The ISO shots have been taken using our incandescent lights, with the chroma noise virtually gone under other lighting.
Samsung WB850F White-balance test images
AWB preset - incandescent lighting | 1/20 sec | f/3.2 | 7.5 mm | ISO 100
Incandescent preset - incandescent lighting | 1/20 sec | f/3.2 | 7.5 mm | ISO 100
AWB preset - fluorescent lighting | 1/6 sec | f/3.2 | 7.5 mm | ISO 100
Fluorescent preset H - fluorescent lighting | 1/6 sec | f/3.2 | 7.5 mm | ISO 100
Fluorescent preset L - fluorescent lighting | 1/6 sec | f/3.2 | 7.5 mm | ISO 100
White Balance Performance - Under the incandescent lights, the AWB and incandescent presets produce very similar results, with a very slight colour cast appearing, but not enough to overly affect the image. The AWB setting performs excellently under the fluorescent lights, with the two fluorescent presets both taking images with a colour cast.
Panorama | 1/750 sec | f/4.0 | 4.1 mm | ISO 100
Panorama mode - Panorama images look particularly impressive when viewed on the web, there isn't enough detail when viewing large, but there are stitched together extremely well.
Samsung WB850F Outdoor images
Drive | 1/350 sec | f/4.0 | 4.1 mm | ISO 100
Fast Shutter Speed | 1/1000 sec | f/3.9 | 16.5 mm | ISO 200
Landscape With Building | 1/1000 sec | f/4.0 | 4.1 mm | ISO 100
Trees | 1/90 sec | f/4.0 | 4.1 mm | ISO 100
The images above have been taken in bright, sunny conditions, with a fast shutter speed used in the second image to capture the water flowing from the fountain.
Samsung WB850F Digital filters
Smart Filter Miniature | 1/750 sec | f/4.0 | 20.3 mm | ISO 100
Smart Filter Cartoon | 1/45 sec | f/3.9 | 16.5 mm | ISO 400
Smart Filter Classic | 1/45 sec | f/3.9 | 16.5 mm | ISO 400
Smart Filter Cross Filter | 1/45 sec | f/3.9 | 16.5 mm | ISO 400
Smart Filter Fish Eye | 1/45 sec | f/3.9 | 16.5 mm | ISO 400
Smart Filter Ink Painting | 1/45 sec | f/3.9 | 16.5 mm | ISO 400
Smart Filter Normal | 1/30 sec | f/3.9 | 16.5 mm | ISO 400
Smart Filter Oil Painting | 1/45 sec | f/3.9 | 16.5 mm | ISO 400
Smart Filter Retro | 1/45 sec | f/3.9 | 16.5 mm | ISO 400
Smart Filter Sketch | 1/45 sec | f/3.9 | 16.5 mm | ISO 400
Smart Filter Soft Focus | 1/45 sec | f/3.9 | 16.5 mm | ISO 400
Smart Filter Vignetting | 1/45 sec | f/3.9 | 16.5 mm | ISO 400
Smart Filter Zooming Shot | 1/45 sec | f/3.9 | 16.5 mm | ISO 400
Artistic Brush Cartoon | 1/500 sec | f/4.0 | 4.1 mm | ISO 100
Artistic Brush Ink Painting | 1/500 sec | f/4.0 | 4.1 mm | ISO 100
Artistic Brush Sketch | 1/500 sec | f/4.0 | 4.1 mm | ISO 100
Digital Filters - The WB850F has a number of Smart Filters to make your pictures more creative and unique, examples of which can be seen above.
Video - Below is a video recorded at full 1080p HD, you can use optical zoom during recording, an example of which can be seen on the ePHOTOzine Youtube Page. Videos can also be recorded with Smart Filters and can record high-speed videos at 240 and 480 fps, click the links for examples.
Value For MoneyThe Samsung WB850F is available for around £215.00. Below are a number of cameras with a similar amount of zoom, with only the Olympus not having GPS. Other cameras with Wi-Fi include the Samsung ST200F at £105.00, Samsung DV300F at £108.50, Samsung WB150F at £129.99, Fujfilm FinePix Z1000 EXR at £184.00, Canon IXUS 240 HS at £204.00, Panasonic Lumix DMC-FX90 at £204.95 and Canon IXUS 510 HS at £275.00.
||Fujifilm FinePix F770
||Canon PowerShot SX260 HS
||Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ30
||Sony Cybershot DSC-HX20V
You'll also need to buy a memory card and a case or bag to keep your camera safe and protected - have a look at our complete guide to camera bags.
|The Samsung WB850F is a feature packed travel compact, with images that will please the user.
Samsung WB850F ProsFeature packed
Wi-Fi functions work really well
Plenty of buttons make it easy to change settings
Rubber grip on front of camera makes it easy to hold
Colourful images with decent amount of detail
Decent value for money
Samsung WB850F ConsCamera is quite heavy
Dodgy battery life
GPS needs maps downloading prior to use
|VALUE FOR MONEY|
Samsung WB850F Specifications
|Max Aperture||f/2.8 - f/5.9|
|35mm equivalent||23mm - 483mm|
|CCD pixels||16.2Mp (Megapixels)|
|Sensor Size||1/2.3 inch|
|Sensor Size (width)||6.16mm|
|Sensor Size (height)||4.62mm|
|Shutter speeds shortest||1/2000sec|
|Shutter speeds longest||16sec|
|ISO sensitivity||100 - 3200|
|Continuous shooting||No Data|
|Optical Zoom with Video||Yes|
|Battery Type||Rechargeable battery : SLB-10A|
|CIPA Rating||No Data|
|Box Contents||No Data|