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Samsung EX2F review

Our Rating :
Price when reviewed : £380
inc VAT

The superb lens tops the impressive list of features, but numerous niggles hold it back


1/1.7in 12.0-megapixel sensor, 3.3x zoom (24-80mm equivalent), 319g

When we’re contemplating paying a lot of money for a premium product, we don’t want to be forced to make compromises. With that in mind, the EX2F looks promising. Its oversized 1/1.7in sensor distinguishes from cheaper cameras, and its f/1.4 lens is as bright as you’ll find on a compact camera. There’s comprehensive manual control, 10fps continuous shooting, a hotshoe for an external flashgun, a 3in fully articulated screen and integrated Wi-Fi. No other compact camera can match this line-up of features.

Samsung EX2F

The models that come close are a capable bunch, though, including the Fujifilm X10 with its sumptuous image quality and the Panasonic LX7, our current favourite premium compact camera for all-round appeal.

While the EX2F compares well on paper, there’s a lack of attention to detail that makes it less rewarding to use. It should be well suited to photographic tinkerers with its front command dial, rear wheel, AE Lock button and drive mode dial. However, there are no dedicated buttons for exposure compensation, ISO speed or white balance. These are available via a Fn button, but navigating the 15 options that reside here isn’t as fast as using single-function buttons, especially since the Fn menu doesn’t respond while photos are being saved.

Samsung EX2F

The rear wheel is used to navigate across these 15 options while the front dial adjusts the selected setting. However, it doesn’t register quick spins of the dial properly, only adjusting the setting by a small amount, so large changes are annoyingly slow to make. For example, going from a 30-second to a 1/4,000-second shutter speed took 32 spins of the dial. The same dial is assigned to shutter speed duties by default in shutter-priority and manual modes, and performing the same task here took just four spins.

Samsung EX2F

Shot-to-shot performance was pretty quick at 1.1 seconds for JPEGs, but raw mode was slower and quite erratic, averaging 2.4 seconds. The 10fps continuous mode lasted for 10 frames – a fairly typical achievement for this class of camera – but the slower 5.5fps and 3fps modes are also limited to 10 frames. All three modes took nine seconds to recover before being ready to shoot again, and they all showed a blank screen during capture. Continuous and raw modes can’t be used together.

Other niggling issues include the lack of an orientation sensor, so portrait-shaped photos must be rotated manually. The 240-shot battery life might not last a day’s use, and in-camera charging means you can’t charge one battery while using another.

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Basic Specifications

Rating ***
CCD effective megapixels 12.0 megapixels
CCD size 1/1.7in
Viewfinder none
Viewfinder magnification, coverage N/A
LCD screen size 3.0in
LCD screen resolution 614,000 pixels
Articulated screen Yes
Live view Yes
Optical zoom 3.3x
Zoom 35mm equivalent 24-80mm
Image stabilisation optical, lens based
Maximum image resolution 4,000×3,000
File formats JPEG, RAW; MP4


Memory slot SDXC
Mermory supplied none
Battery type Li-ion
Battery Life (tested) 240 shots
Connectivity USB, AV, micro HDMI, Wi-Fi
Body material magnesium alloy
Lens mount N/A
Focal length multiplier N/A
Kit lens model name N/A
Accessories USB cable
Weight 319g
Size 64x112x51mm

Buying Information

Warranty one-year RTB
Price £380

Camera Controls

Exposure modes program, shutter priority, aperture priority, manual
Shutter speed 30 to 1/2,000 seconds
Aperture range f/1.4-7.7 (wide), f2.7-8.5 (tele)
ISO range (at full resolution) 80 to 3200
Exposure compensation +/-2 EV
White balance auto, 5 presets with fine tuning, manual
Additional image controls contrast, saturation, sharpness
Manual focus Yes
Closest macro focus 1cm
Auto-focus modes multi, centre, flexible spot, face detect, tracking
Metering modes multi, centre-weighted, centre, face detect
Flash auto, forced, suppressed, slow synchro, red-eye reduction
Drive modes single, continuous, self-timer, AE bracket, WB bracket, precapture