To help us provide you with free impartial advice, we may earn a commission if you buy through links on our site. Learn more

Samsung PL90 review

Our Rating :
Price when reviewed : £90
inc VAT

Dependable image quality, but slow performance and basic videos mean there are better buys


1/2.3in 12.0-megapixel sensor, 4.0x zoom (28-112mm equivalent), 122g

Photo quality was generally much better, with lush colours and crisp details, although focus deteriorated towards the edges of frames. Noise was visible even in brightly lit shots but digital processing kept it in check up to ISO 800.

Samsung PL90 sample 1
Lush colours and crisp details helped produce some decent shots, but focus deteriorated towards the edge of the frame – click to enlarge

The Smart Auto mode handled low-light scenes well, despite the lack of optical stabilisation, but other modes tended to use blur-inducing slow shutter speeds. The airbrush effect applied to faces in Smart Auto mode looked ridiculous. We dread to think of the offence caused if friends thought we had airbrushed their wizened faces before posting shots on Facebook.

The PL90 has some interesting features and its image quality is respectable. Ultimately, though, its weaknesses are more conspicuous than its strengths.

Pages: 1 2

Basic Specifications

Rating ***
CCD effective megapixels 12.0 megapixels
CCD size 1/2.3in
Viewfinder none
Viewfinder magnification, coverage N/A
LCD screen size 2.7in
LCD screen resolution 230,000 pixels
Articulated screen No
Live view Yes
Optical zoom 4.0x
Zoom 35mm equivalent 28-112mm
Image stabilisation none
Maximum image resolution 4,000×3,000
Maximum movie resolution 640×480
Movie frame rate at max quality 30fps
File formats JPEG; AVI (M-JPEG)


Memory slot microSDHC
Mermory supplied 50MB internal
Battery type Li-ion
Battery Life (tested) 200 shots
Connectivity USB plug, AV
HDMI output resolution N/A
Body material plastic
Lens mount N/A
Focal length multiplier N/A
Kit lens model name N/A
Accessories AV cable
Weight 122g
Size 57x98x20mm

Buying Information

Warranty one-year RTB
Price £90

Camera Controls

Exposure modes auto
Shutter speed auto
Aperture range f/2.8 (wide), f/6.3 (tele)
ISO range (at full resolution) 80 to 1600
Exposure compensation +/-2 EV
White balance auto, 5 presets, manual
Additional image controls red, green, blue
Manual focus No
Closest macro focus 15cm
Auto-focus modes multi, centre, face detect, tracking
Metering modes multi, centre-weighted, centre, face detect
Flash auto, forced, suppressed, slow synchro, red-eye reduction
Drive modes single, continuous, self-timer, AE bracket, smile detect