Samsung SMX-C10 - Samsung SMX-C10

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With its tiny size and low price, the C10 is clearly not aimed at video-making enthusiasts. It’s too small to integrate an accessory shoe, and there isn’t much room for microphone or headphone jacks, which unsurprisingly are therefore not present. The only connections are mini-USB and a minijack for composite video and RCA audio output. However, Samsung has still included a reasonable array of manual controls. Easy access is provided to the most frequently used functions via the joystick on the LCD edge. Simply press this down to call up the options.


A basic exposure control with 12 steps is available, but there’s no independent adjustment of shutter or iris. You can toggle between autofocus, face detection, and manual focusing. As with the exposure control, manual focusing uses the joystick for configuration, so is quite fiddly. The scene modes are also accessible via the joystick, covering the usual suspects such as sports, portrait, beach and snow, plus a few oddities like food and waterfalls. However, Samsung also includes its white balance presets in the same list, so you can’t use these at the same time as scene modes, which is slightly frustrating.


Also frustrating is that backlight compensation can only be accessed via the main menu. Aside from including this and all the functions discussed above, the menu includes 10 digital effects, a wind-cut microphone option, and a time lapse facility. The latter lets you capture frames at intervals ranging from one a second to one every 30 seconds, for a duration of 24, 48, or 72 hours, or until storage runs out. Naturally, you will need to hook up the mains adapter for this, although Samsung also boasts a 160-minute battery life for the C10, which we found fairly accurate.


It should also be noted that the C10 has a true 10x optical zoom, something which the cheapest camcorders and pocket Internet models almost always lack. The digital zoom boosts this to a ludicrous 1,200x, but as usual definition will disappear completely when you use this so it’s best disabled.

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