Samsung's Galaxy Camera is making its way to Australia, so here are some initial sample photo to whet your appetite.

Unless specified, all photos are presented as is, with no post-processing, apart from cropping or resizing for web. See more hands-on photos with the camera in our gallery here.

The Galaxy Camera will be available in Australia from the end of this week for AU$599 outright, or through Optus and Telechoice on data plans.

The Galaxy Camera is certainly not behind the eight-ball. It's an Android-based compact camera with a 21x optical zoom, running Jelly Bean and with 3G connectivity. This means that provided you have a micro SIM card in the device, you can instantly upload to a range of sites like Facebook or Twitter, share on Instagram or back up to Dropbox. The possibilities are really only limited by the apps available on the Google Play Store.

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Photo by: CBSi / Caption by:

The weather might be somewhat dreary at Sydney's iconic Bondi Beach, but the Galaxy Camera delivers a pretty even exposure. The camera can shoot in a number of different aspect ratios, including 16:9, 4:3 and 3:2, but do note that only 16:9 will make use of the full 4.8-inch screen. The other aspect ratios add black borders to the edges of the screen (not the image itself) to delineate the edges.

Click here to see the full-resolution version of this photo.

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Photo by: CBSi / Caption by:

If you want to see the made-for-Instagram version of this photo, click here.

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The Galaxy Camera can also do panoramas, and from the looks of this shot, it stitches them together quite well. Simply move the camera across a set horizontal axis while holding the shutter button and it will automatically merge the images together in an almost-360 degrees shot.

Click here to see the full-resolution version of this photo.

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There's a full range of manual control options on board, including program, shutter, aperture and full manual exposure. These options are selected from the menu icon at the right hand side of the screen and pop up with a rotating dial when in full manual mode to switch between all the exposure parameters. For those photographers who would rather stick to more automatic modes, you can also just tweak exposure compensation if you so desire.

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Colours on default settings look very punchy and vibrant, though perhaps a little oversaturated across the red channel as you can see in this image above. Still, it's no different from how many other compact cameras and smartphones on the market render images.

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The lens is at its sharpest when shooting at the wide (23mm) end, though there is a small amount of chromatic aberration visible on images in high-contrast situations. This is pretty easy to correct in post-processing with software like Lightroom.

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That 21x optical zoom certainly gets in close to subjects from the other side of Sydney Harbour.

Click here to see the full-resolution version of this photo, which shows how the Galaxy Camera renders images at its furthest focal length.

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There are built-in scene modes, including landscape, night, star trail and multi-shot options, but the most impressive is macro mode. Forcing the camera to shoot at its widest end means that you can use the maximum f/2.8 aperture, and sharpness of the main subject is really quite impressive. However, in macro mode, you can't use the optical zoom.

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Last, but not least, where would a camera be without art filters? Not very popular with smartphone owners, probably. Fortunately, the Galaxy Camera has a range of built-in filters to apply before you hit Instagram, though, of course being Android-based, you can run any number of other apps on this device.

Filters include sepia, black-and-white, negative, old photo, vintage, pastel sketch and our favourite of them all, gothic noir, as pictured above.

If you forgot to apply a photo filter before taking an image, never fear, as the included Photo Wizard app gives access to a number of other effects for creative inspiration.

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