Samsung WB700 packs 18x zoom into compact frame

There's no time to stand around and chat when the Samsung WB700 has been announced. Click here for the details of this giant-zooming compact camera.

Richard Trenholm Former Movie and TV Senior Editor
Richard Trenholm was CNET's film and TV editor, covering the big screen, small screen and streaming. A member of the Film Critic's Circle, he's covered technology and culture from London's tech scene to Europe's refugee camps to the Sundance film festival.
Expertise Films | TV | Movies | Television | Technology
Richard Trenholm
2 min read

While offices up and down the land ease into the new year with a first day back chatting to colleagues in place of doing any actual work, CNET UK Towers is working furiously. Working to bring you the latest gadget news from tech show CES, that is: with barely a nod of acknowledgement to friends and colleagues, the Crave newsdesk is too busy reporting on the long-zooming Samsung WB700 compact camera.

The 16-megapixel snapper sports a 24mm wide angle Schneider Kreuznach lens with optical image stabilisation for a gigantic 18x optical zoom. That's the kind of zoom you'd previously only see in a much larger SLR-style superzoom camera, putting the WB700 ahead of long-zooming compact rivals such as the Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ10, Fujifilm FinePix F300EXR and Canon PowerShot SX210 IS.

Photos can have different looks by applying the camera's Smart Filter 2.0 effects. New soft focus, comic book-style half-tone dot and cinematic styles join fish-eye, pencil sketch and other effects.

Video is 720p high definition, saved in H.264 file format. There's an HDMI socket to plug the camera directly into your hi-def TV.

The video mode includes noise reduction. Noise reduction in cameras usually refers to the camera removing image noise speckles from your photo, but in this case we're talking about cutting out the audible noise of the zoom's movements. Software cancels the sound of the zoom sliding in and out so you can zoom while filming and the distracting whirr isn't captured on your video.

The WB700 is a follow-up to the Samsung WB600, a snapper good enough to win one of our coveted CNET UK Editors' Choice awards. That camera launched alongside the GPS-packing WB750, so we may see a location-aware WB750 some time soon.

The Samsung WB700 arrives in April and is expected to cost £250.

Update: Based on specifications given to us by Samsung, an earlier version of this story stated that the WB700 captures raw files. It doesn't. Still, no use crying over spilt milk.