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Samsung Galaxy Note review

How does the Android Ice Cream Sandwich update fare?

The camera on the Samsung Galaxy Note is identical to that found on the Samsung Galaxy S2, which is in no way a bad thing since the little brother already has a pretty amazing snapper.

The rear camera gives you 8MP, which is fairly standard these days among the high-end units and turns out quite nice shots.

It takes almost no time at all to fire up compared to some other handsets, and you can realistically have opened it and shot your picture within 5-7 seconds. This is where the 1.4GHz dual-core brain really kicks in.

Sadly there's no shutter button, which is a real drag considering the size of the handset.

Samsung Galaxy Note review

It's not as if the Samsung Galaxy Note doesn't have room for one, so you can see that Samsung has obviously omitted it for design reasons.

The problem is that the Samsung Galaxy Note is too big to hold with one hand and you find your fingers either encroaching on the screen (therefore triggering tap-to-focus), hitting either the back or menu softkeys (triggering an unwelcome menu incursion) or getting in the way of the lens which causes its own problems.

You soon learn how to hold the Samsung Galaxy Note so that you can take a photo using the on-screen button but then have to explain to other people when you ask "Will you take a picture of me?"

Luckily, when it comes to taking photos, you have all the options of any reputed point-to-shoot camera.

Samsung Galaxy Note

Everything from a multitude of scene modes to ISO levels, blink detection and so on, although when you tap the little settings app, you do find it takes a moment or two to bring this menu up.

To solve this, you're able to add shortcuts to your two favourite menu options directly on that camera screen which can save time. This really is a top-notch offering and gives you the freedom to take great pictures.

Shooting in low light is not an issue because the flash really is bright enough to light even the darkest and gloomiest of settings.

Shutter lag can be a slight issue if you're trying to take a picture of a moving object in dim light, but it's nothing to get too upset about.

Samsung Galaxy Note

Outdoor visibility mode is a godsend - basically it's Samsung turning up the contrast to silly levels on your screen so it can burn through direct sunlight.

The quality is much poorer, but at least you can see what you're snapping, and it's a real boon for outdoor shots.

The shooting modes are a mixed bag - action mode doesn't do what you think it will, instead creating a collage of lots of frames from a moving scene. Beauty and Panorama mode are OK too, but the options to Cartoon-ify a scene seem a bit pointless indeed.

Of more use are the macro modes, exposure alteration and the automatic metering, which help actually make the photo look better by bringing up the correct colours and brightness.

Samsung Galaxy Note review

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Taken indoors with artificial light, pictures do come out well albeit with small amounts of noise.

Samsung Galaxy Note review

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Samsung Galaxy Note review

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Bright artificial light yields particularly impressive results.

Samsung Galaxy Note review

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Images taken in bright, natural sunlight cannot be faulted at all. Pin sharp and vivid.

Samsung Galaxy Note review

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Scene modes help – this is 'autumn' mode, which enhances natural colours but can look a little unnatural.

Samsung Galaxy Note review

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This is the same photo taken with no scene modes.

Samsung Galaxy Note review

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Pointless effects such as negative are included.

Samsung Galaxy Note review

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Sepia is also included, and does add a little drama.

Samsung Galaxy Note review

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Samsung Galaxy Note review

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Samsung Galaxy Note review

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Tech Specs

Product TypeSmartphone
Network BandQuad Band
Input MethodTouchscreen
TouchscreenYes
BluetoothYes
Wireless LANYes
USBYes
Contract TypeSIM-free
Maximum Memory Card Size Supported32 GB
Built-in Memory16 GB
Built-in FlashYes
Memory Card SlotYes
Cellular Data Connectivity TechnologyGPRS, EDGE, HSPA+, HSDPA
SAR Value0.11 W/kg
GPS ReceiverYes
Multi-SIM SupportedNo
Near Field CommunicationYes
Integrated TV TunerNo
Product FamilyGalaxy Note
Cellular Generation4G
Cellular Network SupportedLTE 700, WCDMA 900, WCDMA 2100, WCDMA 1900, GSM 850, GSM 900, GSM 1900, GSM 1800, WCDMA 850
Rear Camera Resolution8 Megapixel
Number of SIM Card Supported1
Front CameraYes
Memory Card SupportedmicroSD
Phone StyleBar
ColourBlack
Operating SystemAndroid
Brand NameSamsung
Battery Talk Time1 Day
Screen Size13.5 cm (5.3")
Screen Resolution1280 x 800
Touchscreen TypeCapacitive
Weight (Approximate)178 g
Green CompliantYes
Green Compliance Certificate/AuthorityWEEE, RoHS
Maximum Video Resolution1920 x 1080
Processor ManufacturerARM
Bluetooth StandardBluetooth 3.0
Operating System VersionAndroid 2.3.5 Gingerbread
Messaging TypeSMS (Short Message Service), MMS (Multi-media Messaging Service), Email, Instant Messaging
USB StandardUSB 2.0
Pixel Density285 ppi
Height146.9 mm
Width83 mm
Depth9.7 mm
Radio TunerYes
Battery Standby Time960 Hour
ManufacturerSamsung
Product NameGalaxy Note Smartphone
Processor Speed1.40 GHz
Processor TypeCortex
Product LineGalaxy Note
Screen TypeOLED
Sensor Typecomfortmeter, Proximity Sensor, Accelerometer, Gyro Sensor, Digital Compass
Manufacturer Part NumberGT-N7000ZBAXEU
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.samsung.com/uk/
Marketing Information

Feel free to do whatever you like, wherever you are, with the Samsung Galaxy Note. Its large 5.3" HD Super AMOLED touchscreen offers a superior viewing experience. Thin and light design allows maximum portability, and full-screen utilisation is perfect for quick and effective tasking on the move. With a choice of touch or super-sensitive S Pen input, you can sketch, write, and capture or crop elements from any screen quickly and easily. The 1.4GHz dual core processor and HSPA+ internet speeds of up to 21Mbps make sure you've got the power you need, too. Choose the Samsung Galaxy Note and discover a new kind of smartphone experience with a world of freedom.

Package Contents
  • Galaxy Note Smartphone
  • Battery
  • Quick Start Guide
Limited Warranty2 Year