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Samsung AQ100 Review

written by: Robert Faustus•edited by: Rhonda Callow•updated: 5/24/2011
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Tired of placing your digital camera in a plastic bag to try and take underwater pictures? Take a look at the Samsung AQ100, a rugged, solid digital camera that's also waterproof! But is the Samsung AQ100 being waterproof enough to warrant a purchase?

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    Samsung AQ100 Review

    The Samsung AQ100, or known as the Samsung WP10 in certain areas, is a digital camera recently released by Samsung. It comes in a variety of colors and has a unique feature, it is waterproof up to 3 meters or 10 feet. It has a dedicated mode for underwater shots and is fairly small and simple to use. Samsung has been a powerhouse for electronics in its home country of South Korea, and recently in the United States, Samsung has really begun raising the bar and becoming the industry lead for various electronics. Ranging from phones, to cameras, TV's and LED projectors, Samsung has become a force to be reckoned with globally. The Samsung AQ100 is a great addition to the Samsung family of electronics.

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    Design

    Rating Average

    Samsung Aq100 - Waterproof 12.2 Megapixel Digital Camera The Samsung AQ100 is a well designed camera and it comes in multiple colors. It comes in vibrant red, eye catching light blue or sleek black colors, all well fitting for the Samsung AQ100. With dimensions measuring at 93.8 x 61 x 18.5mm, the camera is not that large and very easy to hold in one hand. It also weighs only 120g, making this compact camera light and portable for users on the go. This small portable camera packs a punch with a 12.2 megapixel lens.

    The front of the camera is fairly empty, occupied by a small internal lens residing on the upper right hand corner and the camera flash residing on the upper left. A Samsung logo sits below the flash and the rest of the front is very sparse and empty. The back of the AQ100 is filled by the 2.7 inch LCD screen. The LCD screen comes off very bright and is easy to see for folks of all ages, and even pictures taken underwater or in dark areas show up bright in the LCD screen. To the right of the screen are 7 buttons: zoom, menu, shooting mode, the directional pad with an OK button in the center, playback and function.

    To the right edge is the mini-HDMI out, for connecting to your HD television. This connection is also used for powering the batteries to the camera and syncing, meaning you can charge your battery through USB. This also means that there's no external charger to charge an extra battery. The battery itself is located at the bottom of the camera along with the slot for a memory card. The AQ100 itself has 20 MB of internal memory.

    The unique design in the Samsung AQ100 is the fact that it is waterproof. Not just waterproof to slight splashes of water, but actually able to handle up to 3 meters or 10 feet of water. With the Aqua mode, the Samsung AQ100 is designed to take underwater shots and video.

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    User Interface

    Rating Average

    In a world of touchscreen phones, GPS units, and cameras, the Samsung AQ100 is Samsung AQ100 - Navigational Pad going the more traditional route with physical navigational buttons to the side. This user interface is something most, if not all, digital camera users are familiar with, but it doesn't offer anything new or exciting. Selecting options is very simplistic, use the navigational pad to move around and press the center OK button to select. Very straight forward and easy to use, but at the same time it's the average layout for digital cameras.

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    Features

    Rating Average

    The Samsung AQ100 comes packed with the usual array of digital camera features. After taking a photo, you can resize, rotate, apply red eye reduction, add a bit of retouch to faces, add saturation, contrast and even add noise to the picture. You can also apply one of the two smart filters, vignette and fisheye lens. It's a good all-around set of features but the unique feature is the dedicated Aqua mode, giving the Samsung AQ100 the ability to take photos underwater. Overall the feature set is a fairly good offering from a digital camera that's waterproof.

    Though not a 'feature' per se, the Samsung AQ100 can only take about 150 shots off a full battery. Carrying around multiple memory cards is fine, but once you've gone through those initial 150 shots, the camera is out. With the lack of a remote charger, carrying around 2 batteries can be cumbersome, as you may forget to charge one.

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    Image Quality

    Rating Average

    The Samsung AQ100 is a 12.2 megapixel camera and the image quality for pictures is very nice. When taking a photo at 12.2 megapixels, each photo takes about 6 megabytes. Pictures at night come out well, as the night mode option for the Samsung AQ100 allows the shutter to stay open for 8 seconds. Once you're at the editing stage, you can zoom into your picture and will notice little to no pixelation, the images comes out clear. The image quality of the Samsung AQ100 is comparable, if not better, than older DSLR cameras such as the Canon Rebel XT.

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    Final Verdict

    Rating Average

    The Samsung AQ100 is a reliable, well designed, colorful digital camera with the unique ability to take pictures underwater. Samsung has released quality products in the smartphone and television markets, and the Samsung AQ100 is no different for the digital camera market. Though the camera does have the fault of only being able to take 150 shots on a single battery charge, the rest of the camera set makes up for it. The Samsung AQ100 is the perfect gift or personal use digital camera for folks who are looking for a simple to use and durable compact digital camera. The image quality also means some professionals can also carry it around as backup for instances where they want to quickly grab the scene.