"This is NOT an optical zoom!"0.5 starson by buck76182
Pros: Size--that's it.
Cons: No optical zoom on video despite advertising to the contrary, terrible lens flare even in moderate sun, miserable on line and telephone service from Samsung.
Summary: I entered my local Best Buy with the intent of purchasing a Kodak Zi8. Instead, the Samsung caught my eye. The main selling feature for me was the Samsung's prominently advertised "3x optical zoom". The Kodak has a digital zoom, and I prefer optical. So, without having done my homework, I brought the Samsung home.
Bottom line--after a painful telephone session with Samsung, they were forced to admit that the optical zoom applies to still photos only. For video, something called "Intelli Zoom" is used. While definitely not optical, the phone tech would only say that IZ is a really, really good digital zoom.
Folks, that's deceptive. Still photography is only a secondary use for this camera. I (and others) bought it for video. To prominently label the camera as having "3x optical zoom" is misleading; of course, a buyer would assume that it applies to the camera's primary purpose: video. Furthermore, a search for the word "digital" in the pdf user document turned up 0 hits--i.e., the term "digital zoom" is never used. Yet, Intelli Zoom is digital, according to the Samsung phone tech.
The advertising is deceptive, and the user manual intentionally covers up the truth.
Oh, and the camera has lousy optics--I have never had such terrible lens flare, not even on a disposable still camera.
I exchanged the Samsumg for the Kodak within 3 hours of my initial purchase. I love the Zi8.