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Cameras

Photos: Hands-on with the Samsung NV8

We got our hands on the 8-megapixel Samsung NV8 this week, a classily-styled compact with retro black looks and truly intuitive manual control

Last week we took a look at the NV15. Today we've been coveting the 8.1-megapixel Samsung NV8 compact camera.

The NV8 shares some features with the NV15: 3x optical zoom, Schneider-Kreuznach lens and, of course, there's that smart touch interface. Aesthetically there isn't much to distinguish between any of the NV series: SLR-esque, retro black metal styling and mode dial, pop-up flash, chunky hand grip and Chelsea-blue lens ring. This isn't a complaint -- it means they all look amazing.

As with the NV8, the NV15 is smaller than it looks in photos. An exhaustive, in-depth, no-holds-barred, no-stone-left-unturned review will be with you shortly. For now, follow us as we take a look at the NV8 from some new angles. -Rich Trenholm

We like the slightly protruding vertical zoom switch, which has more travel than the flat buttons on many compacts.

If we have any criticism of the NV8 -- and the NV15 -- it's that the 64mm (2.5-inch) screen feels a bit poky. There's plenty of information to fit on there too, so if you're more Mr Magoo than Margrethe Mather you might not get on with the average-sized screen.

Still, Crave's National Health Service-enhanced ocular capacity means we love the myriad options packed onto the screen thanks to a couple of really flexible manual modes.

Set the camera to program mode and you control everything but shutter and aperture. Go for full manual and you get those too. This is where the smart touch interface comes into its own.

Seven buttons across the bottom of the screen and seven down the sides give you access to a potential 49 options at your fingertip -- not counting a few extras that require a moment's scrolling.

When you've chosen what you want to adjust, the touch-sensitive buttons give you a truly intuitive way of adjusting shooting options -- like shutter speed -- by brushing your fingertips across them.

The classy Samsung NV8 can be yours for around £150. Worth every penny, we say.