There's the usual horde of scene modes on offer, some of which are useful, some of which will never see the light of day. The night shot and the sunset modes could come in handy if you are away on holiday, although the auto and the program options will be the most popular. The latter enables you to adjust the exposure and change settings such as white balance, so you can be a little more creative with your shots.
Samsung has thrown in some extra features for good measure, including an MP3 player. This may sound excessive, but with a decent sized SD card on board -- such as the 1GB card we reviewed it with -- it's not a bad extra. The more music you have on there, the less room you have for images, but even shooting at the maximum resolution, you'll be hard pushed to shoot more than 512MB of images in a weekend away, so you can fill the rest with music for the journey. You can also play videos on the NV3's LCD, although they need to be converted into a modified XviD MPEG-4 file format.
The NV3 doesn't disappoint on the image front. The high resolution proves itself capable of capturing amazing levels of detail, and the images can happily be blown up considerably larger than the standard 100x150mm (4x6-inch) size and retain the fine detail and the bright natural colours this camera excels at. There's also little in the way of digital noise, although as you up the ISO this becomes more of a problem, especially as the flash is weak and doesn't have much range.
The lens may be small, but it does a great job of avoiding unsightly barrelling or purple fringing that are the bugbears of some smaller cameras. In fact, as a point-and-shoot camera we only have one real problem with the Samsung: the pre-set white balances, which tend towards green. Using the evaluative setting is simple though (just get some white paper in front of the camera and press the shutter release), and produces much improved results. These gripes aside, image quality is first rate, and if you like your photos bright and colourful then you won't be disappointed.
It's the complete package we like -- great images, good build quality, fast reaction times and a price that won't break the bank. It looks like Samsung is finally understands what we want from a digital camera.
Edited by Mary Lojkine
Additional editing by Kate Macefield