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Samsung Galaxy K Zoom is official: 20.7MP, OIS, and 10x optical zoom in a stylish body

Posted: , by Nick T.

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Samsung Galaxy K Zoom is official: 20.7MP, OIS, and 10x optical zoom in a stylish body

Is it a smartphone, or is it a camera? Well, the Samsung Galaxy K zoom is actually a mix of both. Announced at Samsung's event at the Red Dot Design Museum in Singapore, the gadget is here to succeed last year's Galaxy S4 Zoom and to meet the needs of those in search of a zero-compromise cameraphone. At the same time, it is a full-fledged, 3G/LTE-enabled Android smartphone sprinkled with a generous dose of Samsung's software goodies.

Design-wise, the Samsung Galaxy K zoom has drawn inspiration from the Galaxy S5 as it features the flagship's distinct perforated pattern and shimmering finish. What's new, however, is the dedicated camera button on the side, which is a must-have for any camera-centric handset. With a weight of 7.05 ounces (200 grams) and thickness of 0.8 inches (20.2 millimeters) at its thickest point, the Samsung Galaxy K zoom ranks among the bulkier smartphones out there. On the other hand, its proportions seem perfectly acceptable for something packing a 10x zoom optical system. 

The screen on the Samsung Galaxy K zoom measures 4.8 inches in diagonal. It is of the Super AMOLED variety, meaning that we can expect vivid color reproduction and excellent viewing angles out of it. The resolution of 720 by 1280 pixels produces a pixel-per-inch figure of 306 ppi, which is more than acceptable.

Under the hood of the Samsung Galaxy K zoom beats a hexa-core SoC – an Exynos 5 model featuring a 1.3 GHz quad-core Cortex-A7 setup handling lighter tasks and a 1.7 GHz dual-core Cortex-A15 CPU which kicks in when extra power is needed. Two gigs of RAM have also been thrown in for good measure. On-board storage capacity is limited to only 8 gigs, but a microSD card slot allows that to be expanded with cards of at least 64 gigabytes. 

Samsung Galaxy K Zoom is official: 20.7MP, OIS, and 10x optical zoom in a stylish body
As for the most exciting part of the equation – the device's camera – Samsung has chosen to go with a 20.7MP BSI CMOS camera sensor that is 1/2.3" in size, which about as big as the one in the Sony Xperia Z2 and the Galaxy S4 Zoom. Aperture size varies between F3.1 at 1x zoom and F6.3 at 10x zoom. To eliminate motion blur caused by shaky hands, the Galaxy K zoom features optical image stabilization. Furthermore, the Galaxy K zoom packs a powerful xenon flash accompanied by an assistive LED light, just like its predecessor.

Camera modes and settings can be configured manually, of course, which should be great news for experienced photographers. Auto-focus and auto-exposure can be controlled separately for superior image control, and the object tracking feature will allow you to snap clear shots of moving objects. In addition, the Pro Suggest mode built into the camera UI allows the camera to pick the optimal settings depending on the scene being captured. There is also a neat Selfie Alarm mode for taking high-quality self-shots with the main camera – point the snapper at yourself and the camera will let you know when you're in the frame. 

On the software side of things, the Samsung Galaxy K zoom will ship with Android 4.4 KitKat. Samsung's TouchWiz UI will be layered on top, to no surprise, bringing extras like Ultra Power Saving mode, Kids mode, and the S Health Lite fitness companion. The pre-loaded Studio app will let users easily edit and manage images taken with the Galaxy K zoom and then share them online for the world to see. 

And this, guys, is the new Samsung Galaxy K zoom. It is scheduled to launch in May, yet we are still unsure whether or not we'll ever see it released on a US carrier. Pricing isn't known, but something tells us that the gizmo won't be cheap.



Press Release

source: Samsung

45 Comments
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posted on 28 Apr 2014, 23:54 3

1. Kishin (Posts: 579; Member since: 30 May 2013)


Turn up!!!!

posted on 28 Apr 2014, 23:57 5

2. StraightEdgeNexus (Posts: 2680; Member since: 14 Feb 2014)


KQ.... K..... S5 prime?..... Facepalms S5 zoom aka K zoom

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 00:02 8

3. galanoth (Posts: 284; Member since: 26 Nov 2011)


I'll import one to play with.
It's got enough power to be a mid-high range phone.
And it has a great camera.
Already have a 64GB SD card to spare.

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 00:05 3

4. ihavenoname (Posts: 1263; Member since: 18 Aug 2013)


I'm expecting a lot from this. That bulky design (not as bad as predecessor though), picture quality should be at least on par with 1020.

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 00:44 2

17. Deaconclgi (Posts: 210; Member since: 03 Nov 2012)


Don't confuse superior zooming capabilities with superior picture quality as that is what most people do. The K Zoom will wipe the floor with the 1020 in a zoom contest due to physics of the optical zoom and the same can be said of the 1020 wiping the floor with the K Zoom with image quality (no zoom used, pure image quality comparison) due to the physics of the much larger sensor.

I hope reviewers and writers that compare realize that an optically zoomed photo has a frame proximity advantage and not necessarily an image quality advantage.

For majority of consumers, zooming in = better image quality when actually on only means a clearer and closer image. If both phones take photos without zoom, you can directly compare the actual image quality otherwise you will be comparing the zoomed imaged quality and for that, the K Zoom's optical zoomed image will be superior due to zoom alone.

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 02:38 2

27. 0xFFFF (Posts: 2051; Member since: 16 Apr 2014)


As you point out, "digital zoom" is a somewhat misleading term as it is not the same thing as "optical zoom".

"Digital zoom is accomplished by cropping an image down to a centered area with the same aspect ratio as the original, and usually also interpolating the result back up to the pixel dimensions of the original. It is accomplished electronically, with no adjustment of the camera's optics, and no optical resolution is gained in the process. This enlargement of the pixels also creates a pixelation/mosaic effect in the image."

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Digital_zoom

For reasonable comparison of say a Nokia 1020 vs. this new Samsung, a variety of photography scenarios should be used, some where optical zoom is the common technique for getting the shot, some where digital zoom suffices for the shot, and some where no zoom is required for the shot. And these scenarios should include a variety of focus distances spanning macro to various longer range uses. Furthermore, the scenarios should include a range of "shot times", from stills to slow action to fast action.

My guess is that this new Samsung is going to produce superior results to the Nokia 1020 in many common usage scenarios -- especially considering the 1020's long lag time to first shot and relatively long shot to shot lag time.

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 00:06 5

5. PapaSmurf (Posts: 7398; Member since: 14 May 2012)


Release the damn spare battery and back covers so I can use my 50% discount Samsung.

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 00:07 22

6. fzacek (Posts: 1244; Member since: 26 Jan 2014)


I actually like it this year. Pretty nice design, very acceptable specs, and a great camera. Not bad, Samsung...

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 00:45 2

18. Doakie (Posts: 1107; Member since: 06 May 2009)


Hmmmmm.... 4.8" 720p is good enough....at least it's 4.8" with off screen capacitive buttons AND it has this generations multitasking button instead of a stupid menu button! I really want an amazing Android camera. 20 MP, 10x optical zoom. If this thing had a Snapdragon 600 or better and 16 GB of internal storage on AT&T in the USA I'll give up my Note 3 and get a Galaxy K Zoom in a heartbeat. I was satisfied with the Galaxy S 3's 4.8" 720p screen; I can put up with that for a great camera.

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 01:38 6

23. livyatan (Posts: 657; Member since: 19 Jun 2013)


The Exynos 5 Hexa is actually a good SoC..comparable Snapdragon 600, or even a bit better.
Read the Note 3 Neo review on gsmarena. With 720p resolution it has performance comparable to that if Snapdragon 800 at 1080p

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 18:37

44. ashouhdy (Posts: 44; Member since: 31 Oct 2013)


As said above this processor ismore powerfull than snapdragon 800 on a 1080p display

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 00:08 4

7. StraightEdgeNexus (Posts: 2680; Member since: 14 Feb 2014)


Btw how in the hell is this a stylish body. Its impressively slim though considering the optics and xenon flash.

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 04:01 1

32. wargreymon (Posts: 140; Member since: 05 Nov 2013)


Maybe Nick is into BBW. I see no other explanation.

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 00:12 1

8. Furbal (Posts: 230; Member since: 22 Sep 2012)


Why such a high f-stop =\

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 00:12 6

9. Tizen007 (Posts: 493; Member since: 07 Jan 2014)


Sold.

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 00:16

10. Lt.Green (Posts: 318; Member since: 13 Mar 2014)


Very nice but I'm still not feeling the perforated pattern, probably prettier with faux leather imo.

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 00:16 7

11. mokhtar (Posts: 196; Member since: 06 Jan 2014)


really samsung suck , wtf is that , with that price i will buy a pro cam , best camera phone design .. LUMIA 1020 .. CLOSE ENOUGH

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 00:24 15

13. maccess (Posts: 576; Member since: 16 Jan 2013)


Butt hurt.. no one ask you to buy it.. just shut up and forget it if you dont like it..

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 00:26 7

15. Adithya7184 (Posts: 304; Member since: 05 Mar 2011)


someone's butthurt..lol

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 01:08

20. galanoth (Posts: 284; Member since: 26 Nov 2011)


There was no price announced.
What are you talking about?

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 00:19

12. KillerKeyboard (Posts: 305; Member since: 21 Nov 2013)


Battery info?

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 00:25 3

14. NotAGeek (Posts: 117; Member since: 26 Jan 2014)


Yuck,perforated back again?I would rather use my pocket cam for optical zoom.Calling with a camera was just awkward IMO

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 00:42 2

16. itsdeepak4u2000 (Posts: 2341; Member since: 03 Nov 2012)


Battery??? Should be 4000+++ coz that xenon flash will use much power.

I like the design from the back, front is same as any other Galaxy. I think the price would be $500-$600, hope so.

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 00:46 2

19. Deaconclgi (Posts: 210; Member since: 03 Nov 2012)


I was hoping for a larger sensor. Come on Samsung, at least use a 2010 sensor size of 1/1.8 like the Nokia N8.

Maybe they will put more R&D into the sensor for the 3rd Zoom.

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 01:20 2

21. garyII (Posts: 160; Member since: 26 Feb 2014)


really really nice....especially for the front surface of the camera, it enhances grip during photo taking...

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 01:36 6

22. diehardnokian (Posts: 38; Member since: 27 Apr 2014)


OIS is a welcome addition! nice one Samsung:)

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 03:10

29. itsdeepak4u2000 (Posts: 2341; Member since: 03 Nov 2012)


It was already there for S4 Zoom. So for its successor, it will be there and definitely it's there.

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 02:14 1

24. KillerKeyboard (Posts: 305; Member since: 21 Nov 2013)


The blue one actually looks very nice.

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 02:23 3

25. sip1995 (Posts: 661; Member since: 07 Feb 2014)


Another wannabe Nokia Lumia 1020 from Samesung .

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 03:39

31. fireblade (Posts: 634; Member since: 27 Dec 2013)


Samsucks

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 06:04 1

35. sergiobr (Posts: 392; Member since: 25 Feb 2013)


You only have a camera we have ... the rest. Try Sony RX100 next time.

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 08:16

41. sergiobr (Posts: 392; Member since: 25 Feb 2013)


Your move !https://www.flickr.com/photos/samsungcamera/14059409764/sizes/o/

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 02:24 1

26. 0xFFFF (Posts: 2051; Member since: 16 Apr 2014)


Better than I thought it would be. But I'd trade some of that optical zoom for a larger, higher quality sensor. I also wonder how good the JPEG processing is going to be. So far, Samsung's JPEG processing is biased towards punchy images, but not accurate colors.

Price will determine whether or not people flock to this device. It's got decent specs other than the sensor size, and offers good value, but not if it is overpriced. I would consider anything above about $450-500 no contract to be overpriced.

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 03:02 2

28. rns122112 (Posts: 42; Member since: 20 Jan 2014)


Stylish design? You mean the same body as almost every other Samsung phone?

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 03:10 1

30. 0xFFFF (Posts: 2051; Member since: 16 Apr 2014)


I think they mean the "bandaid" plastic, similar to the S5. "Fab glam" or whatever Samsung called it.

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 06:46

38. rns122112 (Posts: 42; Member since: 20 Jan 2014)


I know the bandaid look but other than that look at the front shape layout etc it's the same damn thing as any other damn samsung phone. That's why I went with the droid ultra cause I'm tired of the same look in samsung

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 04:17 3

33. gigaraga (Posts: 495; Member since: 29 Mar 2013)


RIP Lumia 1020520920720. The real killer beast is here.

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 05:09 1

34. microsoftnokiawin (Posts: 880; Member since: 30 Mar 2012)


the lumia 1020 beat the last samsung zoom or whatever it's called

and it's actually a phone :P !

plus i heard there's a nokia camera phone coming from nokiasoft this year game on !

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 06:54

40. sergiobr (Posts: 392; Member since: 25 Feb 2013)


Try Sony RX100 II is cheaper and better. If you need a phone go android.

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 06:05

36. sergiobr (Posts: 392; Member since: 25 Feb 2013)


60fps , OIS, NFC etc missing only 1" sensor. I´ll buy it anyway, but waiting the K2 with big sensor !

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 06:26

37. surethom (Posts: 227; Member since: 04 Mar 2009)


Much better than last year but STILL too thick, should have been 5x optical zoom & max 15mm thick, also 8gb storage is pathetic & shows how cheap samsung is, even putting apps, photos & videos on SD card the phone will fill up within a few months Flash memory is so cheap.

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 06:49

39. anleoflippy (Posts: 247; Member since: 03 Jan 2013)


A better design than the last generation, lets see how it plays.

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 08:35

42. tokuzumi (Posts: 235; Member since: 27 Aug 2009)


8GB? How much space is left? 1GB? I like this, but why can't they just make it a S4 spec'd device, and put at least 16GB? I would love to have a phone like this, but I don't want hardware from 2 generations ago. Are people actually buying these phones? This is the 3rd one Sammy has released, but none of the devices are very desirable.

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 16:28

43. DaMaster (Posts: 14; Member since: 28 Apr 2014)


the Sensor on the S5 is incredible , Photos look idential a lot of the times sharper than my sony Nex 6 camera , video looks insanely better, wonder why they didnt use that sensor instead.

posted on 29 Apr 2014, 22:21

45. SuperMaoriBro (Posts: 255; Member since: 23 Jun 2012)


having a 10x optical requires space, making it to much of a fatty for my liking, but I'm sure there will be many who don't feel the same. Glad Samsung are making different devices to suit different people

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