Samsung WB500 digital camera
The Samsung WB500 is the world's first mega zoom camera providing a 24mm wide angle zoom and a total range of 10x. This is quite an achievement when it comes to optics. Samsung has not been easy on itself. The specifications are appealing, although the camera's design is not particularly striking. And it are exactly the occasional striking features, such as the silver-colored buttons on the back, that turn out inconvenient in practice. It's hard to see which symbols are on the buttons and what function the buttons represent. Samsung is not the only company dropping a stitch in this area. Other than that, the camera is quite recognizable as a compact camera. The uninformed user will be surprised by the 24mm wide angle and 10x zoom, while the size does not give away these kinds of specifications.
Samsung WB500 camera specifications
It's a fact the camera looks a lot like competitive models when it comes to model and specifications, which is due to the success of the Panasonic TZ series cameras. Recently, the Panasonic LUMIX TZ7 was reviewed, obtaining an excellent final conclusion. A camera like this setting the standard and being referred to, seems something that is more than logical. It are not the specifications that make the difference, even though the technical specifications are quite appealing. The image quality always remains an important part. And in this respect, Samsung could still improve.
Samsung WB500 image quality
The hiccup for the Samsung WB500 is found in the quality of the signal/noise ratio. Visible noise shows up from ISO 400 and the performance of the higher ISO values isn’t too good, but on the other hand, the chances of using the high ISO decreases depending on the effect of the optical image stabilizer. However; in the case of the Samsung WB500, we find a noise reduction system which is in fact so aggressive that even the lower ISO values start to suffer from it. The result in this case is loss of detail, which is an effect that does not occur on competing cameras such as the Panasonic TZ7 or the Canon PowerShot SX200 IS Megazoom.
Samsung WB500 test conclusion
The Samsung WB500 is an interesting camera, and if you settle for an average image quality, excellent operation, fine color reproduction and a large optical zoom range, you will certainly have fun with this mega zoom camera. Yet, we simply expected more from Samsung, certainly because over the last few years, Samsung has been telling us how serious the company is, and that they are on an unscrupulous mission to conquer market shares. That Samsung is in the process of doing so certainly can't be denied, however, the results for high quality digital camera products really trail behind the expectations. If you're looking for the ultimate camera, you will probably find the Panasonic LUMIX TZ7 the right choice. The Samsung WB500 is placed on the reserve bench, but does distinguish itself through its strong price/quality ratio.
Samsung WB500 memory
The Samsung WB500 has three different compression levels; Super fine, Fine and Standard. We applied the highest quality for this review, and the 10MP setting including Super fine. A file has an average size of 5.5MB in this quality, which is not too bad in terms as of processing for the camera, and at a later stage, for notebook and desktop. A 1GB memory card will get you quite far, and it is therefore also our advice to combine at least this capacity with the Samsung WB500.
Considering 1GB of storage capacity:
10 Megapixels - 3648x2736 pixels - JPEG - Super fine - 183 pictures
10 Megapixels - 3648x2736 pixels - JPEG - Fine - 334 pictures
10 Megapixels - 3648x2736 pixels - JPEG - Standard - 472 pictures
9 Megapixels - 3648x2432 pixels - JPEG - Super fine - 200 pictures
9 Megapixels - 3648x2432 pixels - JPEG - Fine - 362 pictures
9 Megapixels - 3648x2432 pixels - JPEG - Standard - 511 pictures
7 Megapixels - 3072x2304 pixels - JPEG - Super fine - 252 pictures
7 Megapixels - 3072x2304 pixels - JPEG - Fine - 442 pictures
7 Megapixels - 3072x2304 pixels - JPEG - Standard - 613 pictures
7 Megapixels - 3648x2056 pixels - JPEG - Super fine - 252 pictures
7 Megapixels - 3648x2056 pixels - JPEG - Fine - 445 pictures
7 Megapixels - 3648x2056 pixels - JPEG - Standard - 619 pictures
5 Megapixels - 2592x1944 pixels - JPEG - Super fine - 334 pictures
5 Megapixels - 2592x1944 pixels - JPEG - Fine - 578 pictures
5 Megapixels - 2592x1944 pixels - JPEG - Standard - 793 pictures
3 Megapixels - 2048x1536 pixels - JPEG - Super fine - 495 pictures
3 Megapixels - 2048x1536 pixels - JPEG - Fine - 814 pictures
3 Megapixels - 2048x1536 pixels - JPEG - Standard - 1067 pictures
1 Megapixels - 1024x768 pixels - JPEG - Super fine - 1238 pictures
1 Megapixels - 1024x768 pixels - JPEG - Fine - 1673 pictures
1 Megapixels - 1024x768 pixels - JPEG - Standard - 1876 pictures