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Self-portraits are nothing new. People have been shooting them for as long as there have been cameras. But shooting a spontaneous self-portrait - or small group shot including yourself - with a compact digital camera can be difficult.
Agfa and Nikon, among others, used to make digital compacts with swiveling bodies. You could face the LCD screen towards yourself to compose a shot. But that body style is out of vogue with camera makers.
Some mid-level digital cameras - particularly super-zooms - provide a swiveling LCD screen. You can flip it down and reverse it to compose the shot. But composing a self-portrait when your suject is upside-down and backwards can be awkward.
And then there's the shoot-and-hope method most photographers are stuck with. You point your digital compact in your general direction and hope for the best. When you're taking a spontaneous shot, you're often stuck with poor composition.
Samsung aims to change all that next month with the release of the DualView TL225. It's a compact 12 MP camera with all the style and features we've come to expect from Samsung... plus a 1.5" LCD screen on the front. So when you feel like taking a spontaneous self-portrait, you can compose with ease.
While 1.5" doesn't sound large for an LCD screen, keep in mind that you won't often view it from any further than arm's length. So it's really not all that bad.
If size matters to you, just flip the TL255 around. The back is entirely dominated by a 3.5" LCD that's touch-sensitive. Yes, they've done away with most of the control buttons, toggles and knobs and included touch-screen menus on the TL225.
Add a 4.6x wide angle optical zoom, image stabilization, HD movies and a bucketload of other features, and this is one nice little camera. Especially if you like to be included in your pictures.