The Samsung EX1 is definitely a great little digital camera. Its design and construction helps ensure that it will last a long time. Not only does it feel well built, it also produces some pretty good results in various situations.
The EX1 isn’t of course a direct replacement for a digital SLR, but it does allow for the ability to take more control over the functions of the camera, especially those who would want to get more into photography than just pointing the camera and clicking the shutter button.
A neat addition to the Samsung EX1 is the ability to attach conversion lenses. In this case, Samsung sent along their Wide-Angle conversion lens which took the 24mm focal length of the Samsung EX1 to a wider 18mm. When you attach the wide-angle conversion lens to the camera, it does add a bit of bulk, but being able to get slightly wider photos is great for subjects such as landscape photography.
The navigational menu for the camera is fairly easy to use with lots of options to play with and tweak. The mode dials on top of the camera can be effortlessly changed when they need to be, or you can just leave it on the Smart Mode to take away all that weird camera mumbo-jumbo like aperture, shutter speed, ISO and others.
The battery life seems to be typical of a compact digital camera. It lasted throughout the day taking photos with enough juice to continue on the follow day. A major downside to the battery component of the EX1 would be the need of the propriety cable. The cable is used to charge the battery (which needs to be inside the camera) via a wall outlet. If you happen to lose the cable, you cannot charge the battery. The cable also acts as the camera to computer cable, though you can still offload any images via card reader if you do lose said cable.
The ability to be able to change the more advanced features of a digital camera is great, but if you are limited by what mode you are in it might frustrate one. If you are new to getting more in-depth with photography, the Samsung EX1 does let you tinker with some of the more manual settings a camera typically chooses for you. If you are looking for a fully manual compact digital camera, the EX1 might disappoint you as it seems to limit particular values based on what mode you are in.
Overall using the Samsung EX1 was relatively easy and straight-forward. You can use the camera right out of the box (don’t forget to charge the battery though), in which means you really don’t need to read the instruction manual to start using it. A bonus for those who love just jumping in with a new electronic gadget.