Photography News 15

24

Camera review

ON TEST

SPECS

SamsungNX1 In the last PN, we took a close look at the handling and extensive features list of one of the year’s most exciting cameras. Now it’s time to turn the spotlight onto the Samsung NX1’s performance

PRICE £1300 body only CONTACT www.samsung.com SENSOR 28-megapixel APS-C BSI CMOS, 23.5x15.7mm, 6480x4320 pixels ISORANGE 100-25,600, expands to 51,200, auto SHUTTER 30secs-1/8000sec, flash sync 1/250sec DRIVEMODES Single, continuous at 15fps METERING SYSTEM Multi-zone, centre- weighted, spot EXPOSUREMODES PASM, auto, custom COMPENSATION ± 5EV in 0.3EV steps MONITOR 3in articulating, touchscreen, Super AMOLED, 1036k dots EVF 100% coverage, 2360k dot resolution FOCUSING Contrast-detect (sensor), phase-detect, multi-area, single point, tracking, live view, detection FOCUSING POINTS 205 phase-detect, 153 cross-type, 209 contrast-detect (sensor) CONNECTIVITY USB 3.0, HDMI, wireless, Bluetooth STORAGEMEDIA SD, SDHC, SDXC (UHS I/II) DIMENSIONS (WXHXD) 139x102x66mm WEIGHT 550g

Words by Will Cheung

edge of the frame. That is mostly because there is such a large active AF area. Using the touch monitor in that respect is very quick because all you do is touch whatever part of the scene you want sharp. I tried the AF system for moving subjects using the 50-150mm f/2.8 with the camera in single zone and multi-zone AF with tracking AF. The camera was set to 15fps and super-fine JPEG to allow a longer sequence of consecutive shots. Again the single AF system was more reliable but the multi-zone system worked with the right subject. For example, with an oncoming car the AF system latched onto it and tracked it effectively. In one sequence I got 35 shots (that’s just 2.3secs of shooting at 15fps) and the target car was sharp for all but a couple of shots. A perfect AF system does not exist and is unlikely to, simply because the camera can’t read what’s going in a photographer’s mind and focus instantly on an infinite variety of subjects. The NX1’s system is very good and shows how much autofocusing on CSC cameras has progressed in recent times. While it’s not infallible, it is impressive and with the right subject in the right situation it can keep pace with 15fps.

them by recording the finest details. The prints, with minimal editing, looked excellent, but I know that if I worked the file harder there is even more detail to be squeezed out. JPEGs out of the NX1 are full of detail and very sharp, as you would expect; no problem using them for critical applications immediately. Comparing the prints from my Raw files processed with default Lightroom 5.7 settings with those from out of the camera JPEGs, the Raws looked soft. They benefitted from some sharpening, either in Lightroom (Sharpening slider at 50) or in Photoshop (Smart Sharpen). Once sharpened, detail levels surpassed those of the JPEGs and images looked very good indeed. The NX1 has one of the most advanced AF systems around, with 205 phase-detection points, 153 of which are cross-type sensors covering 90% of the image area. The camera has four AF options: single zone, multi-zone, face detection and selfie detection. Overall AF responsiveness and accuracy rate highly and I enjoyed using the system, whether using the EVF or the touchscreen. With the camera on a tripod, being able to focus on one section of the scene and meter from another was great fun and useful too. I used the single zone and multi-zone AF systems equally. The single zone option is what I am used to and certainly the NX didn’t let me down too often. While using the EVF moving the AF point around the image area is quite slow especially if you want to place the subject at the

The Samsung is an APS-C format compact system camera bristling with exciting features and the very latest innovations. It can rip through shots at an incredible 15fps even in Raw quality mode; the sensor is the first APS-C sized sensor with BSI technology to maximise image quality when light levels are low and its 28.2-megapixel resolution means you can make almost A2-sized prints without any software interpolation. I shot most of the time in super-fine JPEG and Raw, only switching to JPEG only when trying out the camera’s 15fps continuous shooting rate. Lightroom 5.7 is compatible with NX1 Raw files and that was used for this review. Lenses used for the review included the two optics in the Premium S collection, the 16-50mm f/2-2.8 and 50-150mm f/2.8, plus the older NX 50-200mm f/4-5.6. For many of the scenic images a Gitzo Mountaineer GT2532 tripod was used with the shutter fired using the self-timer. NX1 files are quite big as you would expect. JPEGs were in the range of 4-13MB and Raws 32-46MB. Opened in software, 8-bit files were around 80MB and in full resolution measured 54.8x36.5cm or 6460x4320pixels, so big enough to print on A2 paper (59.4x42cm) without any interpolation. I made a batch of A2 prints on glossy paper from edited Raws and out of the camera JPEGs through an Epson Stylus 3880 printer and the results are impressive. Scenes with detail looked wonderful. During my test, at the tail end of autumn, I shot plenty of woodland scenes and the NX1 did justice to

For the full version of the Samsung NX1 review, please

see Issues 51 & 52 of Advanced

Photographer, on sale in newsagents now, or go to iTunes for the digital version.

JPEGs out of theNX1 are full of detail and very sharp, as you would expect

Photography News | Issue 15

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