Best known as the lone Korean company amongst the Japanese giants, Samsung has been steadily gaining ground in the consumer electronics segment.
Though cameras have not been the mainstay of the company’s business, their advanced compact cameras can match many strong brands in the market. The Samsung WB150F is a 14-megapixel superzoom compact camera offering 18x optical zoom.
Design and Build Quality
The Samsung WB150F is built sturdy with a metal front panel and tough engineering plastic back panel. The lens has a three-segment construction. The LCD panel does not have a protective frame around, which makes it prone to scratches. The buttons are of good quality and the mode dial elicits a positive feel. The tripod socket is plastic.
The 14.2 megapixel Samsung WB150F uses a 1/2.3-inch Type (6.16 x 4.62 mm) CCD for imaging. It features a Schneider-KREUZNACH 24 – 432mm equivalent f/3.2 – 5.8 lens featuring Optical Image Stablilisation. In the normal mode, the lens focusses from 80cm to infinity at the wide-angle end and from 3.5m to infinity at the telephoto end, while in Macro mode, it focuses from 5 to 80 cm at the wide-angle end and from 1.8m to infinity at the telephoto end. The camera achieves focus through TTL autofocus method. The focus modes are Centre AF, Multi AF, Selection AF, Tracking AF, Face Detection AF, Smart Face Recognition AF, and Manual Focus. Shutter speeds range from 16 to 1/2000 sec, while the sensitivity has a range from ISO 80 to 3200. Metering modes are Multi, Spot, Centre-weighted, and Face Detection. Exposure can be compensated up to +/-2 EV in 1/3-EV steps. White Balance options are Auto, Daylight, Cloudy, Fluorescent_H, Fluorescent_L, Tungsten, Custom Set, and Colour Temperature. The built-in flash has a range of 0.3 to 3.38 m at the wide-angle end, and 0.5 to 1.51m at the telephoto end. The flash recharging time is approximately 4 sec. The flash modes are Auto, Red-eye, Fill-in, Slow Sync, Off, and Red-eye Fix.
Shooting modes featured are Smart Auto, Program, Aperture Priority, Shutter Priority, Manual, Scene, and Magic Plus. Smart Auto modes include Portrait, Night Portrait, Backlight Portrait, Night, Backlight, Landscape, White, Natural Green, Blue Sky, Sunset, Macro, Macro Text, Macro Colour, Tripod, Action, and Fireworks. The Magic Plus modes are Live Panorama, Magic Frame, Split Shot, Picture in Picture, Artistic Brush, and Photo Filter. The Photo Filter mode provides options of Miniature, Vignetting, Ink Painting, Oil Painting, Cartoon, Cross Filter, Sketch, Soft Focus, Fish-eye, Old Film, Half Tone Dot, Classic, Retro, and Zooming Shot. The drive modes are Single, Continuous, Motion Capture, and AEB. The self-timer can be set to Off, 10 sec, 2 sec, and Double (10 sec, 2 sec).
Video modes are Smart Scene Detection, Movie, and Magic Plus. Smart Scene Detection mode detects Landscape, Blue Sky, Natural Green, and Sunset, while Magic Plus allows you to set Picture in Picture and Movie Filter. Movies are recorded in MP4 format with a maximum size of 1280 x 720 pixels and frame rate options of 30 or 15fps. The Movie Filter mode provides options of Miniature, Vignetting, Half Tone Dot, Sketch, Fish-eye, Classic, Retro, and Palette Effect.
Still images are recorded in JPEG format with a maximum size of 4320 x 3240 pixels. The camera has an internal memory of approximately 18 MB and accepts an SD/SDHC/SDXC card of up to 64 GB capacity. The device weighs approximately 187.9 g without battery and memory card, and has dimensions of 106.5 x 59.9 x 23.4 mm (W x H x D).
The Samsung WB150F has a plastic hand grip, is very comfortable. The display is crisp and the colours are displayed well. It can be viewed comfortably from a wide angle. The menu is simple and easy-to-use, but the Settings menu can be accessed only from the mode dial, which is a deviation from normal. The tripod mount is at the geometric centre of the base, which is ideal.
The Samsung WB150F performed well in our tests. Autofocus was fast and accurate and the images were sharp. The camera controlled darkening of corners very well which was visible in a few shots at the extreme corners, barely noticeable to the untrained eye. In against-the-light shots, flare was observed at the wide-angle end with wide-open aperture, along with purple fringing. Slight barrel distortion was observed up to 84mm equivalent, but this was barely noticeable. We would consider this very good control of distortion. Metering was accurate with all metering modes performing well.
Both Auto and Preset White Balance modes performed extremely well under all lighting conditions. Native print size of the images was 10.8 x 14.4 inches at 300 ppi. At 25 percent screen size, images were noise-free up to ISO 400. At 50 percent screen size, we did not observe noise up to ISO 200. Viewed at 100 percent, the images showed slight noise from ISO 100 onwards.
Value for Money
The Samsung WB150F retails at an MRP of Rs.12,900. At this price, the camera is very good value for money.
+ 18x optical zoom
+ Excellent White Balance performance
+ Good distortion control
– Noise control could have been better
Design and Build Quality 17/20
Key Features 16/20
Noise Control 3/5
Value for Money 8/10
Grand Total 82/100
The Samsung WB150F is a superzoom compact camera capable of delivering excellent results. At a competitive price tag, the camera would be an excellent choice if you are looking for a high performer that offers priority modes.