Samsung Galaxy K zoom Preview


Introduction


Last year, Samsung decided to create another new market niche, outing the first handset equipped with a 10x optical zoom – the aptly named Galaxy S4 Zoom. It had a 16 MP sensor, protruding lens, and a bulky body, making it more of a camera with phone functions you'd take on vacation, rather than something suitable for the everyday grind.

This year Samsung doubled down on the new market niche it created, by introducing the Galaxy K zoom, whose naming scheme breaks away from riding on the flagship's coattails this time. The second edition is better equipped in the specs department, both on the phone, and on the camera side, as it now sports a 20 MP sensor. Does the K zoom stand a better chance of becoming something else than a niche device for camera enthusiasts? Let's share some initial impressions, based on a preliminary version of the handset...

Design

The 10x optical zoom lens makes for a comparatively bulky and hefty phone, but is still more comfortable to use and carry than a 6” phablet.

At 5.41 x 2.79 x 0.65 ” (137.5 x 70.8 x 16.6 mm), against the 4.94 x 2.50 x 0.61” (125.5 x 63.5 x 15.4 mm) of the Galaxy S4 Zoom, the K zoom is one taller, wider and slightly thicker handset, making it less suitable to operate with one hand than its predecessor. The huge lens area on the back sticks out a bit, to 20.2mm, and gets in the way while operating the phone, but one can quickly get used to that. Due to the protruding lens part, the phone also looks funky when placed on a table, with the upper part propped by the camera, and the phone rocking left or right when you tap on the screen.

At 7.05 oz (200 g) of weight, you'll always notice that the K zoom is in your pocket or your hand, but still the heft and dimensions are manageable, considering that you can carry a 10x optical zoom device with you at all times. The thing weighs as much as some of those 6-inchers that are flooding the market, so if you are willing to put up with that lack of comfort, you won't have trouble gobbling up the K zoom, too.

Samsung has outfitted the cameraphone with its signature physical home key below the display, while the volume rocker, lock key, and camera shutter on the right hand side. The left is occupied solely by the microSD slot, which lets you extend the internal storage with up to 64 GB cards.

Samsung has opted for the perforated look that first appeared with the Galaxy S5, but this one here is simply dimples made in hard plastic. The dimpled battery cover is easily removable, revealing a replaceable unit underneath it. This might come in handy for those photogs that the K zoom is aimed at, since they can carry a spare juicer or two with them at all times when shooting in the boondocks.


Samsung Galaxy K zoom

Samsung Galaxy K zoom

Dimensions

5.41 x 2.79 x 0.65 inches

137.5 x 70.8 x 16.6 mm

Weight

7.05 oz (200 g)

Samsung Galaxy S4 Zoom

Samsung Galaxy S4 Zoom

Dimensions

4.94 x 2.5 x 0.61 inches

125.5 x 63.5 x 15.4 mm

Weight

7.34 oz (208 g)

Nokia Lumia 1020

Nokia Lumia 1020

Dimensions

5.13 x 2.81 x 0.41 inches

130.4 x 71.4 x 10.4 mm

Weight

5.57 oz (158 g)

Sony Xperia Z2

Sony Xperia Z2

Dimensions

5.78 x 2.89 x 0.32 inches

146.8 x 73.3 x 8.2 mm

Weight

5.75 oz (163 g)

Samsung Galaxy K zoom

Samsung Galaxy K zoom

Dimensions

5.41 x 2.79 x 0.65 inches

137.5 x 70.8 x 16.6 mm

Weight

7.05 oz (200 g)

Samsung Galaxy S4 Zoom

Samsung Galaxy S4 Zoom

Dimensions

4.94 x 2.5 x 0.61 inches

125.5 x 63.5 x 15.4 mm

Weight

7.34 oz (208 g)

Nokia Lumia 1020

Nokia Lumia 1020

Dimensions

5.13 x 2.81 x 0.41 inches

130.4 x 71.4 x 10.4 mm

Weight

5.57 oz (158 g)

Sony Xperia Z2

Sony Xperia Z2

Dimensions

5.78 x 2.89 x 0.32 inches

146.8 x 73.3 x 8.2 mm

Weight

5.75 oz (163 g)



Display

Typical oversaturated AMOLED screen.

Samsung opted for a larger display diagonal, compared to the 4.3” S4 Zoom. The K zoom sports a 4.8” 720x1280 pixels Super AMOLED display with the very good 306ppi pixel density. That's perfectly fine for most scenarios, including reading smaller text. Super AMOLEDs usually sport tacky, oversaturated colors, and the K zoom is not an exception.We'll leave our opinion and measurements for our review of a retail unit.

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