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Samsung SGH D600 review

Samsung SGH D600 review
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Retail Price: RM 695
AP Price: N/A
THE Samsung SGH-D600 is the company’s flagship quad-band phone, with range-topping features such as a 2-megapixel digital camera, a 2in 262k colour TFT screen, 70MB internal memory and Picsel Viewer.
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Review On : Samsung SGH D600
By Marc Rutten
Translated by: Jonathan Cheah
Original review at
At a Glance : Build quality: 9/10
Applications: 9/10
Interface: 9/10
Value-for-money: 8/10
Overall rating: 8.5/10
Cons : Solid Feel
Memory expansion
Loud Ringtones
Excellent audio through earphones
Pros: Camera functions not intuitive
Difficult to use when closed

Samsung has conquered the market with the most beautiful models and the recent D600 is no exception. All these models ensure Samsung a firm second place in the Dutch market. The D600 is a continuation of the successful D500 model.
The D600 was introduced during CEBIT 2005 and it was said that this handset would appear in the market around the third quarter.
Now it is time to judge. Is the Samsung D600 the worthy successor model which is expected by everyone? These questions will answered in the review, and competing models such as the Sony Ericsson K750i, W800i and the Samsung D500 will be taken into consideration.
In the box

  • Battery (standard battery)
  • Charger
  • Handset
  • Stereo headset
  • Data cable
  • Video-out cable
  • EasyStudio Software on CD-Rom
  • English and Dutch guide

    Exterior
    The Samsung D600 is a slider phone. The keypad is underneath the screen, and both halves of the phone meet seamlessly when the phone is slid open. The D600 does not seem plastic or cheap, and the finishing material used is very beautiful.
    The handset has dimensions of 96 x 47 x 22 mm and a weight of 103 grams which is small and light, but remains somewhat larger and heavier than D500. However, there are no handsets at present with these possibilities and specifications.

    In the front of the handset one finds the display screen with a 4-way navigation pad with a press-down button in its middle. There are two soft keys here, and the C button is also here. Finally, the all-important dial and hang-up buttons are also found here.
    The characters and signs on the number pad of the D600 are slightly larger than that of the D500. Next to the volume toggle is a slot for the TransFlash memory card. At the bottom of the phone is the usual connector for the data cable, and this port is covered by a removable cover which is an improvement over the D500.

    On the back of the phone is the camera, which is flanked by a self-portrait mirror at the right-hand side and a flash at the left-hand side. The camera is not protected like the D500 and is therefore susceptible to scratching.
    Another component that is completely new in the D600 is two stereo speakers, which are placed on both sides of the handset. These improve upon the stereo speakers on the Samsung E760 and are the best speakers in the market.

    Buttons/Screen
    As is usual to Samsung, the screen is of a superior quality and certainly equivalent to W900i and the Sharp V903. It sports a 260K colour screen with a QVGA resolution of 240 x 320 pixels and the degree of clarity of the screen is simply amazing.

    The D600 does not support a screensaver, which is a step down from what was available on the D500. You can adjust the settings to reduce or extend the length of time before the screen dims.
    Software/Messaging
    This phone uses the standard Samsung interface with that new update effective since the D500. The main screen which one sees reflects on top of the page which connection is integrated, what is the reception of the handset, and if a memory card has been placed and the remaining battery capacity. There is no difference between the menu when the handset is closed and when it is opened.
    Messaging is improving in Samsung devices over the course of the years. The D600 has the ability to send group SMS and this is a substantial improvement over earlier models. The usual SMS, MMS, EMS and POP3 / SMTP email are present in this device.
    One nice function here is that you can block a few numbers from which you do not want to receive messages. Would be nice here in Malaysia, where you can shut out all the annoying spam that our telcos send to us paying customers.
    On the handset the user can store a maximum of 200 SMS and 30 server bulletins. The quantity of MMS and email depends on the remaining memory in the handset.

    PIM
    The telephone book is nothing much. One has the normal functions, the dates and contacts can be stored on the handset and synchronised with Outlook by means of the provided EasyStudio software. The user can store about 1000 numbers on the handset.
    At the contacts section one can store the name, mobile number, private number, office number, fax number, extra number, e-mail address, photograph, video (new with respect to D500), ringtone and a note.
    The process of correctly storing an address becomes irritating because of the slow response of the Samsung handset. Many business users of D600 will simply carry a PDA in addition to this phone.
    The handset has 54 MB of Internal memory, and it supports TransFlash memory cards which at present go up to 512 MB. The funny thing is that you can’t automatically store data on the memory card. The photographs and videos go directly into the phone’s memory, and then you must perform the transfer at a later occasion.
    The handset uses the first part of 50 MB primarily for MMS reports, email and the file management which accommodates all images, videos, music and sounds. There is still space for 200 SMS reports, 30 server bulletins, 400 calendar notes, 50 notes and 1000 contacts. The second part of 4 MB is for all the Java applications such as programs and games.
    Camera/Video
    The 2.0 megapixel camera is the best Samsung camera for handsets on the market. The camera is a revelation in the field of the options and user freedom, but unfortunately the quality leaves much to be desired. The options are more than that of the K750i, but one cannot attain the superior quality of the Sony Ericsson.

    The quality of the photographs is reasonable. The Sony Ericsson and the Nokia N90 are better. This means that Samsung loses its lead position of D500 to both counterparts and this has nto taken into account the super quality of the 3.2 megapixel camera in the Sharp V903.
    One can shoot photographs in the following resolutions: UXGA (1600 x 1200), Mega (1152 x 864), SVGA (800 x 600), VGA (640 x 480), QVGA (320 x 240), mobile (240 x 320) and frameworks (240 x 280).
    This flash has four settings: from, only photograph, automatically and permanently, which one can use as a pocket lamp. The flash has a range of around the four meters according to Samsung, but one never obtains that.

    The video camera has four resolutions, namely CIF (352 x 288), QVGA (320 x 240), QCIF (176 x 144) and Sub-QCIF (128 x 96). Beside the resolutions is possible one chooses from two video modes, namely normal and the MMS limit.
    The photograph is made in the JPG format and is stored in photograph album. There can one examine the photograph and add frames and emoticons. To video files applies almost the same. These files are stored in MP4 and 3GP format.

    It can be only concluded that this handset has a good camera. The quality of the videos of the D600 beats that on the K750i, but not photograph quality. The N90 on the other hand outclasses the D600 entirely.
    Multimedia/Voice
    The MP3 player is a simple but effective player, whom one can customise to one’s own needs with files. One can establish whether a certain order must be followed and what the volume should be.
    In the MP3 player one retrieves 3D functions and the choice from four equaliser settings (normal, traditional, jazz and Rock). All these functions work rather well and one does hear a difference in the sound from the stereo speakers. The quality is slightly lower than the speaker of the K750i and W800i.

    Also there is no support for i-Tunes in the D600. There is no voice dialling, but the Voice Recorder or Voice Note records surrounding sounds nicely in AMR format. It is possible to use these files as a ringtone in the handset.
    Connectivity
    Connectivity is always a problem with Samsung. The D600 does not have an infrared port on the handset. However, the D600 is the first Samsung handset with Bluetooth 2.0 and stereo audio support. The Bluetooth works OK and has very few problems. The other possibility for connectivity is provided the data cable works properly.

    It is now possible to send several files by means of the Bluetooth to and from the D600 at the same time with the same connection.
    Games
    The games which are present in the handset are Forgotten Warrior, a platform game which resembles Zelda Freekick, a football game and Arch Sting, a 3D shooter where one must eliminate the enemy in a spacecraft.




    Editor's Opinion

    The D600 takes a step ahead for Samsung. The fact that one cannot directly store photograph and videos on the memory card is a major irritation, and not being able to download screensavers in such an expensive handset s ridiculous.
    The quality of the 2 megapixel camera is reasonable with respect to other 2.0 megapixel cameras on the market. The strong points are the dimension and the weight of the handset. The colour screen and its resolution and clarity are at an enormously high level.
    The expectation is that around CEBIT 2006 next year, Samsung will unveil the succeeding model to the D600, and that at the beginning of next year the Smartphone variant of D600, D720 to the Dutch market will be available. The handset is equipped with the Symbian operating system and shares a large number of specifications with D600.


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