Home Buyer's Guide Cameras Advanced Compacts-2011
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Premium Compact Cameras

Feature-Packed Models Pair Pocket Portability With Advanced Performance

This Article Features Photo Zoom





1. A Front Wheel Key and Dual Dial adjust manual settings conveniently. 2. Standard-definition movie recording is available with a maximum recording time of up to 20 minutes via the dedicated video record button. 3. The rear of the camera also allows access to settings with dedicated ISO, flash, metering and an Fn button for a menu of regularly changed settings.

Samsung TL500

LIST PRICE: $499


INTRODUCED
2/2010
The incredibly fast ƒ/1.8 aperture of the ultra-wide 24mm Schneider-Kreuznach 3x optical zoom lens (24-72mm with a variable aperture of ƒ/1.8-2.4) of the Samsung TL500 compact makes it stand out from the crowd, and there are plenty of other advanced features, as well, like the 1/1.7-inch, 10-megapixel CCD sensor, RAW file capture, 3.0-inch swiveling energy-efficient AMOLED screen for composing at awkward angles and high light sensitivity up to a max ISO of 3200 in full resolution. Dual Image Stabilization—optical and digital IS—keeps images sharp, and the Smart Range high dynamic range mode captures details in the highlights and darker areas. The Miniature, Vignetting and Fish-eye Smart Filters offer optical effects, and standard-def 640x480 at 30 fps video recording is included.

STANDOUT FEATURE: The incredibly fast ƒ/1.8 aperture of the ultra-wide 24mm Schneider-Kreuznach 3x optical zoom lens (24-72mm with a variable aperture of ƒ/1.8-2.4) makes the TL500 stand out from the crowd.




1. The DP2S includes a pop-up flash as well as a hot shoe for adding an external flash. 2. The 24.2mm lens translates to a 41mm focal length in 35mm equivalence, ideal for use as a standard lens that rivals the natural perspective of the human eye. 3. The back panel User Interface has been improved, with better visibility and faster operation, with red markings for shooting and white markings for reviewing images.

Sigma DP2s

ESTIMATED STREET PRICE: $699


INTRODUCED
2/2010
Sigma’s compacts are interesting in that they use the same FOVEON X3 14.1-megapixel imaging sensor as the one available in the Sigma DSLR bodies. The flagship DP2s compact also features Sigma’s True II image processor and improved autofocus over its predecessor, the DP2. There’s a new Power Save Mode, and the rear of the DP2s has been updated as well, with better labeling for easier access to controls. Otherwise, the DP2s is nearly identical to the DP2’s full set of advanced functions, including 12-bit uncompressed RAW capture, a 24.2mm (41mm-equivalent) ƒ/2.8 lens, ISO up to 3200 (in RAW), a 2.5-inch LCD screen and a pop-up flash. The DP2s comes with SIGMA Photo Pro4.0 for working with Sigma RAW images.

STANDOUT FEATURE: Sigma’s FOVEON X3 Direct Image sensor is unique, even when compared against DSLR sensors, for its three-layer construction of pixels, one for capturing each primary color. Most sensors use a Bayer pattern that captures each RGB color on a checkerboard-style layout of different photodiodes, combining the recorded information afterwards.

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