There is so much to like and enjoy about the Samsung R10 that this often manages to distract you from its occasional faults. The design is, at least aesthetically, an acquired taste but the long-term prognosis is that it's just as effective as other designs – so don't be scared of it.

Visually, the results are impressive. Our test footage shows an almost unflinching performance from the autofocus and the R10 can handle complex scenes without diminishing video quality. Colours are accurately reproduced and there is an sharpness to the edges of objects and at the edges of the frame.

On the audio front it's nothing spectacular: so it's crisp on speech but a bit woolly on anything with too much bass (i.e. music!).

We liked:

Compact, easy to use and with a menu that's well labelled and a cinch to access via the touchscreen.

Very impressive overall video performance at this price point; and the ability to shoot HD and SD footage is useful for increasing recording times.

Extra record button and zoom controls are practical and effective.

We disliked:

A piddly 5x optical zoom on a camcorder like this is, dare we say it, almost criminal.

Yes, the software is free, and is rather versatile, but it would still benefit from an interface tweak to make it more welcoming to new users.

Verdict:

Samsung is an ultra-competitive brand in the camcorder world and the R10 is equipped with a very good mix of features and functionality, plus it comes in at a cost-effective price. A couple of extra spec points and this would be scintillating, instead it has to settle for being (just) very impressive. Not bad, 'eh?

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