PMA 2010: Samsung Intros 10MP TL500 Compact Camera with 24mm, F/1.8 Lens.
Feb 20, 2010
By Dan Havlik, PDN Technology Specialist
The TL500, which will sell for $450 when it ships this Spring, will compete against other advanced compact cameras with fast aperture lenses such as the Panasonic Lumix LX3 which has a 24mm f/2.0 lens; and the Canon Powershot S90 which has a 28mm, f/2.0 lens.
But with its Schneider Kreuznach lens and blinding f/1.8 spec, the TL500 will be tops in the category -- at least on paper -- and should be able to capture bright images in low light without a flash. The f/1.8 lens is also designed to shoot photos with a shallow depth of field and blurred backgrounds, just like higher-end digital SLRs with prime lenses. (At least that's the idea.)
The TL500's slightly larger than normal 1/1.7-inch imaging chip should also help to keep noise down when shooting at high ISOs (it can shoot up to ISO 3200). However, in comparison to cameras such as the Panasonic GF1, Olympus EP-1, and Samsung's own NX10 which use either Micro Four Thirds or APS-C size image sensors, the TL500's chip is miniscule.
With the continuing popularity of the LX3 and the positive reviews the S90 has gathered, we're looking forward to testing out the TL500 and seeing how it stacks up to the competition. The company will be showing the camera off at the PMA trade show in Anaheim, CA this week.
Other details on the TL500 include:
• 3x optical zoom
• 3-inch, swiveling, AMOLED display on back
• DRIMeIII image processor
• RAW shooting
• SD movie mode (640x480 / 30fps / H.264)
• Manual shooting options
More details in the press release below.
SAMSUNG LAUNCHES THE TL500 - A HIGH-END COMPACT WITH AN ULTRAWIDE AND BRIGHT F/1.8 LENS
Fast Operating Speed and Ultra-Sensitive 1/1.7” CCD Will Impress Enthusiast Photographers
Anaheim, CA (February 20, 2010) - Samsung Electronics America, Inc., a market leader and award-winning innovator in consumer electronics, proudly introduces the 10 mega-pixel TL500, a high-end compact digital camera designed specifically for today’s advanced and enthusiast photographers. The new flagship of the company’s compact digital camera family, the new TL500 incorporates a full-range of advanced features, including a high-performance imaging sensor and one of the brightest lenses ever featured on a compact camera – a 24mm ultrawide angle Schneider KREUZNACH, f/1.8. The TL500 will be on display during PMA 2010, February 2123, in the Samsung booth, #2227, in the Anaheim Convention Center.
“With the TL500, Samsung further differentiates its lineup from the competition and achieves yet another milestone in the industry,” said Mr. SJ Park, CEO of Samsung Digital Imaging Company. “With ultra-wide angle capability and unparalleled speed, the TL500’s lens offers a new level of versatility allowing the user to be more creative and take better pictures.”
High-Quality Optics and Images
The Samsung TL500 is sure to turn heads thanks to its ultra-wide, f/1.8 Schneider lens – one of the brightest ever featured on a compact digital camera. The impressive f/1.8 lens offers photographers a wider range of aperture steps and shallow depth-of-field, giving them the ability to blur out the background of their images while maintaining focus on their subjects. The ultra-fast, f/1.8 lens also allows users to take better photos in low-light environments as more light is passed through to the new high-performance 1/1.7” CCD sensor. Larger than the sensors typically found in compact digital cameras, the TL500’s 1/1.7” CCD offers unrivaled sensitivity (max ISO 3200/full-resolution). Together with Samsung’s reengineered and fast, DRIMeIII imaging processor, the TL500 captures high-quality images, regardless of the lighting environment.
The high-end Schneider lens offers a 24mm, ultra-wide focal length and 3x optical zoom. Much wider than traditional compact cameras, the TL500’s 24mm ultra-wide angle lens allows photographers to capture more of a desired scene, such as beautiful landscapes and large groups of friends or family. For blurfree images, the TL500’s lens is also paired with Samsung’s Dual Image Stabilization technology.
Versatile Display Enhances the Viewing Experience
Composing and reviewing images on the TL500’s three-inch, swiveling AMOLED screen is a pleasure. The rotating AMOLED display will allow photographers to precisely frame their images the way they want and shoot from just about any angle, including overhead or lowtothe-ground shots. Compared to the traditional TFT-LCD found on most digital cameras, the TL500’s AMOLED provides users with a higher contrast ratio, deeper blacks and more accurate, vivid colors, even when viewed from an angle or in direct sunlight. The TL500’s AMOLED display is also more efficient when it comes to power consumption, allowing photographers to maximize battery life and shoot longer on a single charge.
Multiple Shooting Options
The TL500 supports RAW and gives enthusiasts full control over their images thanks to its shutterpriority, aperturepriority and full Manual shooting modes. When using these settings, shooters can experiment with features such as slower shutter speeds and depthoffield; however, for those who prefer ease-of-use over manual controls, the TL500 also offers Samsung’s Smart Auto 2.0 (Still & Movie) scene recognition technology. Applicable for video recording (640x480 / 30fps / H.264) and taking digital stills, this intelligent feature analyzes the scene and then automatically selects the appropriate settings for the best results possible. Using this mode requires minimal effort and does not sacrifice image quality for simple operation.