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Hands-on with the Samsung L210: Dial M for Manual

The Samsung L210 arrives amid a rash of similarly monikered compacts, so we had a go at giving it a name that would reflect how cool its full manual mode is

What is it with camera manufacturers and their names these days? In the last week we've got our hands on the Casio EX-S10 and Nikon Coolpix S210. Now we've had a play with the Samsung L210. Are all the good names gone? We took a look at this clever little compact camera from Korea and had a think about what Samsung could have called the L210.

It's a 10.1-megapixel point-and-shoot, debuting alongside the L100 and L110 in Samsung's compact L range. The tiny aluminium body sports a 64mm (2.5-inch) LCD screen and a 3x optical zoom lens, with a 35mm equivalent focal length of 37mm. Features include face detection and auto red-eye fix. So far, so standard. So on the name front, we're thinking, the Samsung Standard Compact Camera? The Samsung Lowest Common Denominator?

Not really, because the L210 has one function that impressed the heck out of us: full manual control. Not exposure compensation, not shutter or aperture priority, not an M on the mode dial that actually just lets you set a minimum or maximum exposure. No, you dial M on that unconventionally positioned dial, and you can adjust aperture settings by tapping up and down on the rear clickpad, and shutter by clicking left and right. The Samsung M for Manual? The Samsung Mean Manual Mode Machine?

Clearly, this isn't as easy as those charming Korean chaps make it look. Let's use's name generator engine to come up with some alternatives. We didn't think much of Aggressive Samsung, Ailing Samsung or Samsung Cancer And The Wasted Team. Perfect Samsung sounded too cocky, while Samsung Beach and Samsung Parade sounded like the kind of corporate marketing tosh that might actually show up on a product, especially one that's been ropily translated. The Skimpy Samsung is just silly, and we don't know what Socio Samsung even means. Which means it's down to Samsung Thigh And The Wednesday or -- and this is our favourite -- Samsung Fury!

The Samsung Fury! -- ahem -- Samsung L210 is available now for a very reasonable £149. -Rich Trenholm