Samsung hasn’t been scared to try different things with their compact camera range, and having rolled out a number of models with forward-facing screens, this is a slightly different proposition.
The MV800 (standing for MultiView) offers a hinged screen on the back to provide a variety of shooting options. With the hinge on the top of the camera, you can set it at any angle, so low shots are incredibly easy to compose, and it will travel through 180 degrees so that it faces forward.
This makes it ideal for those who like to take pictures of themselves, no longer having to rely on a tiny silver dot, like some early Canon Ixus compacts offered, or pure guesswork. Instead you get the full glory of that 3-inch touchscreen LCD display.
And why not? Of course it means the camera is slightly thicker than it might otherwise be, but at 18.3mm it isn’t exactly chunky. Fortunately the build quality seems solid too, so hopefully you won’t end up with a flappy screen after a few months.
There is also an additional shutter button on the back of the camera which is revealed when you fold the screen out. The location is slightly puzzling as we’re not sure if this is designed for shooting yourself by reaching around, or whether it’s designed for poking from the back. Either way, it’s there if you want it.
Being a touchscreen model means most other controls have been removed. As we’ve seen before from Samsung cameras the control menus are graphical, fun and vibrant, but we felt it might have a few too many shooting options - you can end up rooting through the menus for some time.
There is, however, a collection a Smart Filters, which let you easily create some great effects in the camera, such as miniature, vignette or soft focus. You also get the likes of Funny Face, which will manipulate the subject’s face into a grotesque figure of your choosing. We’re not sure that academics will be too enamoured with the rather dour looking “Professor” setting.
Technically the Samsung MV800 offers you a 16-megapixel CCD sensor, with a 5x (26-130mm in 35mm terms) optical zoom Schneider Kreuznach lens. Like a number of previous Samsung models, this is one that wants you to use a microSD card, rather than the regular SD card.
The Samsung MV800 can be yours for £249 and will be available later in September.