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Samsung Galaxy S4 Zoom Review

Samsung Galaxy S4 Zoom 8

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Call quality

Samsung Galaxy S4 Zoom Review
The earpiece of the S4 Zoom sounds clean and is of strong volume, though voices come in a bit hollow. The microphone on the handset is also a great performer, relaying our voices very loud and clear to the other end, with no audible distortion, save for some hissing at the highest volume.


Samsung doesn't give official talk times out of the 2330 mAh battery capacity in the S4 Zoom yet, but it doesn't seem to drain faster than usual for this screen and chipset with normal usage. If you are constantly shooting pics and video, as there's a good chance you will, better carry a spare unit in your wallet, though.


The minute you hold the Galaxy S4 Zoom, it becomes clear that Samsung has done more of a compact camera with phone functions, rather than a cameraphone conceived from the ground up with mobility in mind. It is quite bulky because of the 10x zoom lens, and uncomfortable to operate with one hand, picture-taking included.

The photos and videos are as good as you'd expect from a decent compact point-and-shoot camera, though they still secede the results from the giant sensor inside the Nokia 808 PureView, which can be considered somewhat of a competitor for shutterbugs, albeit with the aged Symbian and much weaker zoom capabilites.

Moreover, apart from the ultimate convenience of having both a Xenon flash and optical zoom, the S4 Zoom is a pretty good Android midranger, too, so when your next vacation comes, and you gear up for a lot of pictures, you might want to take just that bulky handset with you, instead of carrying two separate devices.

Oh, and if you have to have a convergence phone/camera device with optical zoom for whatever daily reason – well, nothing can rival the chubby S4 Zoom then, and Samsung has priced it pretty well to boot, just slightly above its S4 Mini blood brother, throwing in the whole camera part for cheap.

Software version: JDQ39.C101XXUAMFB

Samsung Galaxy S4 Zoom Video Review:


  • Good value-for-money for a convergence device
  • Very good pictures and video, including in low-light
  • 10x optical zoom performs very well


  • Bulky and challenging for one-handed use
  • Low OLED screen brightness makes it hard to frame a shot outside
PhoneArena rating:
8 Good
User rating:
8.8 4 Reviews

  • Options

posted on 04 Jul 2013, 10:55 25

1. KINGJUAN27 (Posts: 210; Member since: 02 Jul 2012)

This trying hard camera phone crap from Samsuck should get a 6 or a 7. LOL. Biased as always!

posted on 04 Jul 2013, 11:23 12

5. Boreni (banned) (Posts: 28; Member since: 22 Feb 2013)

"The “phone” is rather bulky at 15.4mm"
Most of the phone is 25mm and not 15.4mm so the phone thickness is 25mm!

Say that the phone is 15.4mm thick is lie to the public.

posted on 04 Jul 2013, 12:05 5

15. ebubekir26 (Posts: 333; Member since: 21 Dec 2012)

you don't have to bash Samsung like that, you may not like the device, I don't, but some people do, photoghraphers or people who are into photography,

posted on 04 Jul 2013, 13:03 8

21. yudi.nemesis (Posts: 1127; Member since: 14 Mar 2013)

For photoghraphers or people who are into photography quality is number 1 and with the same price point we can find compact camera with superior quality.
So only samsung die hard fans will like and buy S4 zoom

posted on 04 Jul 2013, 14:27 4

24. Bioload25 (Posts: 213; Member since: 12 Nov 2012)

Not necessarily,if a photographer needs to use a phone and "professional" camera to share photos with his boss,for example,this might be a good alternative...
If someone purchases a Samsung device,that person might not be a fanboy,the possibilities of liking that specific device are very high...
(sorry,im brazilian and my english may not be correct)

posted on 04 Jul 2013, 15:59 4

30. yudi.nemesis (Posts: 1127; Member since: 14 Mar 2013)

i think no one will use S4 zoom as their main smartphone and if those photographer need optical zoom they can use optical zoom accessory it's smaller and they can take it off so their smartphone doesn't look like bulky brick.

or they can buy some compact camera with WIFI support so they can share photos with everybody

with that price point there is no good reason to buy S4 zoom

posted on 04 Jul 2013, 20:05 1

35. maccess (Posts: 742; Member since: 16 Jan 2013)

just say whatever reasons you want kid.. you just trying hard to make people dislike this phone or samsung's phone.. if you don't like samsung no need to manipulate other people mind with your PERSONAL OPINION kid...

posted on 04 Jul 2013, 21:33 2

38. yudi.nemesis (Posts: 1127; Member since: 14 Mar 2013)

Yeah at least my PERSONAL OPINION not some BS.
i can’t manipulate other people mind, i just show them there is better options but if you or other people like and want to buy S4 Zoom i can’t do anything with that.

i’m sure anyone who smart enough will agree with me, because we can find compact camere with better quality, cheaper even some of them have smaller size

posted on 05 Jul 2013, 09:45

40. Bioload25 (Posts: 213; Member since: 12 Nov 2012)

Yudi,you've forgotten na inportant point: the S4 Zoom is still a very good midranger phone,and the fact that anyone can buy it (photographer or not),only the consumer determinates the usefulness of the phone,if u dont agree with its performance and price point,please,dont buy it

Another thing: if you see better photo quality on compact cameras,that doesnt indicate necessarily that this phone loses in câmera department,because its your interpretation of the images...
(again,sorry my bad english)

posted on 05 Jul 2013, 13:18 1

41. yudi.nemesis (Posts: 1127; Member since: 14 Mar 2013)

S4 Zoom is just average performer both in camera quality (compare to compact camera) and as android smartphone, at online store S4 zoom is around $600.

with $600 I can buy some high end android smartphone
or i can buy midranger with good camera for day to day use + compact camera with wifi

just like i said before there is better option than S4 zoom and photographer or not, for anyone who is smart enough the will choose the best option available

posted on 07 Jul 2013, 16:06

44. Bioload25 (Posts: 213; Member since: 12 Nov 2012)

and again its your perception about the quality of the phone bro,that doesnt mean its the only opinion in the whole market... somebody may hate the galaxy s4 zoom (like u,for example) but someone may like the phone,open your mind a little bit...

posted on 07 Jul 2013, 17:19 1

45. yudi.nemesis (Posts: 1127; Member since: 14 Mar 2013)

it’s not my perception about the phone, S4 zoom is just average performer in terms of camera and smartphone.
my mind is wide opened so thats why i can see many better options

i know the truth is some people may like it and other not but it’s not what i’m trying to say.

i said with the same price point we can get high end smartphone or midranger phone with good camera for day to day use + compact camera

Having great midrange phone and compact camera with better quality with the same amount of money is smarter and better options than expensive camera phone with average performance

posted on 13 Jul 2013, 01:28

46. Bioload25 (Posts: 213; Member since: 12 Nov 2012)

Theorically yes,but you seem to like the compact cameras and holding the thing all around,pressing hard buttons all the time and waiting some time untill the picture is taken (underwhelming processor),charging it and the phone at the same time....
if u can buy a device that takes good pictures in no time with soft touch screen and lighter weight,it'll be alot less to care about...

posted on 14 Jul 2013, 15:53 1

47. yudi.nemesis (Posts: 1127; Member since: 14 Mar 2013)

the biggest problem with S4 Zoom is, thick, heavy and expensive.

with about the same amount of money i can get something like
1. Sony DSC-WX200 18.2MP Exmor R, 10x optical zoom, Sony G lens, built in WiFi, Optical SteadyShot, and only 121g.
2. Xperia V 13MP Camera, 4.3” HD Display with 342ppi, Dual krait cpu and adreno 225, water and dust resistant, 120g.

you can get many other device,
but i just want to show youthat with the same amount of money i can get 2 devices, a great compac camera and great midrange phone.

posted on 08 Oct 2013, 23:42

49. doubleandry (Posts: 1; Member since: 08 Oct 2013)

I was a photographer, now a videographer. I have to say that I really enjoy this cameraphone alot. first because, yes, I care about a good image quality.
the main reason I fall in love with this camphone is I can get some random candid shot when I'm not working, which mean I dont bring my photography/video gear around. Hey, if you are a photographer, it doesnt mean that you bring your camera wherever you go,so it's a good deal. alot smaller than dslr, with standart quality, after all, photography is not just about high quatily image, but timing,compositing, and many more. I can say I can get better good low res photo than average people with high end photography gadget.
again, the choice is yours....

posted on 25 Jul 2013, 23:54 1

48. chocolaking (Posts: 495; Member since: 22 May 2012)

I wouldn't recommend this device to any of my friends.
this thing is realistically not practical in any aspect.

posted on 04 Jul 2013, 11:03 10

2. KINGJUAN27 (Posts: 210; Member since: 02 Jul 2012)

Meh! Next please, we're waiting for the Lumia EOS and the Xperia Honami. Samsung, get ready!

posted on 04 Jul 2013, 11:44 1

8. Birds (Posts: 1171; Member since: 21 Nov 2011)

I'm just pissed because I don't see a big enough photo quality boost for it's price... Not to mention that who ever reviewed this took pictures of ugly ass thistles... I hate them things...they are the worst invasive species ever...damn aggressive European plants smothering GA wildlife....-_-

posted on 04 Jul 2013, 12:48 2

19. SonyXperiaNexus (Posts: 374; Member since: 01 Oct 2012)

lol, nokia lumia EOS vs samsung galaxy POS

posted on 04 Jul 2013, 13:01

20. haseebzahid (Posts: 1853; Member since: 22 Feb 2012)

so nokia 6310 is still better then samsung galaxy Zoom

posted on 04 Jul 2013, 11:03 9

3. Lyngdoh (Posts: 297; Member since: 06 Sep 2012)

This is one fugly phone.

posted on 04 Jul 2013, 11:53 5

12. PhansMuneeb (Posts: 371; Member since: 28 Jan 2012)

Welcome to the galaxy..

posted on 04 Jul 2013, 11:16 1

4. RiseAgainst94 (Posts: 281; Member since: 03 Mar 2012)

Samsung has never really been a contender in the photography department. They have one really strong contender in their EXF series, so I'm surprised to see that this review was so impressed by the image quality, especially in low light situations.

posted on 04 Jul 2013, 11:26 9

6. DFranch (Posts: 249; Member since: 20 Apr 2012)

What a farce. There is no way this camera, i mean phone should score an 8. So it's uncomfortable to hold, looks stupid to make a call with, has a crappy screen and lower specs, and you give it an 8. You mention the 808 pureview, but never mention the Nokia EOS which is coming out in a week. I agree with KINGJUAN27, a 6 or 7 max.

posted on 04 Jul 2013, 11:53

11. PhansMuneeb (Posts: 371; Member since: 28 Jan 2012)

Some people hate Nokia, so yeah that's a fair score.

posted on 04 Jul 2013, 11:40 9

7. jackhammeR (Posts: 1548; Member since: 17 Oct 2011)

"The photos themselves are on par with a very good point-and-shoot camera, and certainly much better than the ones from your smartphone, except for the 808 PureVew. "

"In our experience with the S4 Zoom, the OIS mechanism is not as advanced as the multiaxis one on the Lumia 920/925, which indeed makes the lens appear “floating,"

Thanbk you. it would be all about samsung zoom. They took a camera, put an android in it and dare to call it a phone. yet, it cannot beat 808 which was "only" on Symbian with ancient hardware. Think what 1020 will do to this samsung crapmera.

posted on 04 Jul 2013, 11:47 1

9. hung2900 (Posts: 965; Member since: 02 Mar 2012)

Nokia 808 with the basic outdoor photos has the similar level of image quality as many DSLRs, but not other situations.
And these situations almost are what the Zoom is better

posted on 04 Jul 2013, 11:51 1

10. PhansMuneeb (Posts: 371; Member since: 28 Jan 2012)

Nokia EOS will hopefully fix that situations

posted on 04 Jul 2013, 11:55 2

13. jackhammeR (Posts: 1548; Member since: 17 Oct 2011)

let me ask you something. You do make normal, standard, mostly on automatic settings, photos or make macros all the time?
Keep in mind that EOS will use OIS and probably will be an improvement over 925 in terms of optimalization and algorithms.
Your argument is invalid. It's on par with basic dslrs in may situations, but zoom cannot even beat, according to many users (mostly andro-boys), this ancient and old-hardwared device.

posted on 04 Jul 2013, 11:56

14. jackhammeR (Posts: 1548; Member since: 17 Oct 2011)

The point is that when Nokia is trying to achieve something truly spectacular pursuing their own way, it's gone unnoticed whereas samsung picked up a blatant shortcut.

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Samsung Galaxy S4 Zoom

Samsung Galaxy S4 Zoom

OS: Android 4.4.2 4.2
view full specs
Display4.3 inches, 540 x 960 pixels (256 ppi) Super AMOLED
Camera16 megapixels
Samsung Exynos 4 Dual, Dual-core, 1500 MHz, ARM Cortex-A9 processor
1.5 GB RAM
Size4.94 x 2.50 x 0.61 inches
(125.5 x 63.5 x 15.4 mm)
7.34 oz  (208 g)

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