The Samsung NX30 brings the tilting viewfinder a whirlwind

The NX30, shown here with the new 16-50mm f2-2.8 lens.

Perhaps in an effort to avoid all the buzz surrounding CES, Samsung took the lead with two announcements about its most important cameras, the Galaxy Camera 2 and NX30. Given the seemingly long gap between the Samsung NX20 and its replacement, it’s not surprising that it has more in common with the relatively recent NX300 than its predecessor.

Based on an almost identical sensor to the NX300 with the same DRIM IV image-processing engine and a combined phase / contrast-detection autofocus system, the company claims image quality and performance will be the same. camera, with slightly less image noise because of the incremental improvements.

While Samsung is strengthening connectivity with NFC for quick connectivity and emphasizing more app-based features like improved Flickr and Dropbox integration and group sharing, I think the built-in tilt viewfinder is the the most exciting new feature. Other enhancements include dual image stabilization in video, optics and electronics; the ability to program more controls, such as up to 10 custom presets that map to two positions on the mode dial; Dual band Wi-Fi for improved connectivity; and a software package with Lightroom 5. You can also play 1080 / 30p video via HDMI, as well as output to clean HDMI.

I would like to compare it with relevant competitors, but Samsung declined to disclose pricing or availability information. So here are its specs with other random cameras with EVF:

Fujifilm X-E2 Nikon 1 V2 Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX7 Samsung NX20 Samsung NX30 Sony Alpha NEX-6
Sensor 16.3MP X-Trans CMOS II 14.2MP CMOS 16MP Live MOS
n / a
20.3MP CMOS 20.3MP CMOS 16.1MP Exmor HD CMOS
n / a
23.6 x 15.8mm 13.2 x 8.8mm 17.3mm x 13mm 23.5mm x 15.7mm 23.5mm x 15.7mm 23.5 x 15.6mm
Focal length 1.5x 2.7x 2.0x 1.5x 1.5x 1.5x
OLPF Are not It’s correct It’s correct It’s correct It’s correct It’s correct
ISO range ISO 100 (exp) / 200 – ISO 6400/25600 (exp) ISO 160 – ISO 6400 ISO 125 (exp) / 200 – ISO 25600 ISO 100 – ISO 12800 ISO 100 – ISO 25600 ISO 100 – ISO 25600
Continue shooting 3 frames per second
JPEG unlimited / raw 8
(7 frames / sec with fixed AF)
5 frames per second
n / a
(15, 30 or 60 fps with electronic shutter)
4.3 fps (with AF tracking)
40 frames / sec (with electronic shutter)
9 raw / unlimited JPEGs
8 frames per second
11 JPEG / 8 raw
9 frames per second
n / a
3 frames per second
11 raw / 15 JPEG
(10 frames / sec with fixed exposure)
VF EVF
0.5 inch
2.4 million points
100% insurance
n / a
EVF
0.5 inch
1.44 million points
100 percent insurance
n / a
EVF
n / a
2.76 million points
100% insurance
1.4x / 0.7x
EVF
n / a

480,000 dots
100% insurance
1.04x / 0.69x
Tilt the EVF
n / a
2.36 million points
100% insurance
1.0x / 0.67x
OLED EVF
0.5 inch
2.4 million points
100% insurance
1.09x / 0.73x
Hot shoes It’s correct It’s correct It’s correct It’s correct It’s correct It’s correct
AF 49-zone contrast AF; Phase detection AF 73 pts
phase detection, 135-zone contrast AF
23-zone contrast AF 15-point contrast AF 105-point phase detection (central cross type); 247-zone contrast AF 99 point phase detection; 25-zone contrast AF
AF range n / a n / a -4 – 18 EV n / a n / a 0 – 20 EV
Shutter speed 30-1 / 4,000 seconds; bulb up to 60 minutes; 1/180 x-sync 30 – 1 / 4,000 seconds (mech), 1 / 16,000 (elec); light bulb; 1/60 x-sync (mech), 1/250 x-sync (elec) 60-1 / 8,000 seconds; bulb for 2 minutes; 1/250 x-sync (external flash) 30 – 1/8000 seconds; light bulb for 4 minutes; 1/180 x-sync 30-1 / 6000 seconds. (mech), 1/8000 (electronic; bulb up to 4 minutes; 1/8000 FP x-sync 30-1 / 4,000 seconds; light bulb; 1/160 second x-sync
Light metering 256 zones n / a Area 1728 221 segments n / a 1,200 zones
Metering range n / a n / a 0 – 18 EV 0 – 18 EV n / a 0 – 20 EV
Variable speed It’s correct It’s correct It’s correct It’s correct It’s correct It’s correct
Wireless flash Are not It’s correct Are not Are not n / a Are not
WAS optics optics Sensor changes optics optics optics
Best video 1080 / 60p H.264 QuickTime MOV 1080 / 60i / 30p H.264 QuickTime MOV AVCHD, H.264 MP4 1080 / 60p @ 28Mbps, 1080 / 24p @ 24Mbps 1080 / 30p H.264 MPEG-4 1080 / 60p H.264 MPEG-4 AVCHD 1080 / 60p @ 28Mbps, 1080 / 24p @ 24Mbps
Sound Stereo; mic input Stereo; Optional microphone input (with AS-N1000 adapter) Stereo Stereo Stereo, microphone input Stereo; mic input
LCD size 3 inch fixed LCD
1.04 million points
3 inch fixed LCD
920,000 dots
3 inch tilting touch screen
1.04 million points
3-inch AMOLED with articulation
921,000 dots
3 inch coupling
1.036 million points
3 inch tilting touch screen
921,600 dots
Wireless
I n
WIFI Optional
(via Wireless Mobile Adapter WU-1b)
WIFI WIFI Wi-Fi, NFC WIFI
Battery life (CIPA rated) 350 shots 310 shots 350 shots 330 shots n / a 270 shots
(with viewfinder)
Size (inch, WHD) 5.1 x 2.9 x 1.5 4.2 x 3.2 x 1.8 4.8 x 2.8 x 2.2 4.6 x 2.5 x 1.4 5.0 x 3.8 x 2.3 4.8 x 2.8 x 1.1
Weight (ounces) 12.7 9.8 (estimated) 14.2 (estimated) 14 (estimated) 13.1 (estimated) 12.3
Mfr. price $ 999.95 (body only) $ 799.95 (body only) $ 999 (estimated, content only) n / a tbd (content only) $ 599.99 (body only)
$ 1,399.95 (with 18-55mm XF lens) $ 899.95 (with 10-30mm lens); $ 1,199.95 (with 10-100mm lens) $ 1,099 (with 14-42mm lens) $ 549.99 (with 18-55mm lens) tbd (with 18-55mm lens) $ 749.99 (with PZ 15-60mm lens)
n / a $ 1,049.95 (with 10-30mm and 30-110mm lenses) n / a n / a n / a n / a
Day shipping November 2013 November 2012 September 2013 May 2012 tbd October 2012
Samsung launches high-end S series lenses with 16-50mm f2-2.8 aperture.

I think the body shouldn’t be more than $ 999 (and by “shouldn’t”, I mean “better not.”) Then again, Galaxy NX has slightly better specs but the large LCD display and portable tech is $ 1,700 for the kit.

Along with the camera, Samsung announced two lenses and flash. The first lens to debut the “S” premium lens lineup with OIS 16-50mm f2-2.8 OIS, splash and dustproof, the i-Function type, a typical higher-end kit lens replacement. While the lens looks great, it will depend a lot on the price.

The second lens is a 16-50mm f3.5-5.6 electric zoom that will be available in an accessory kit starting April. Samsung is also launching a new, more advanced flash unit (SEF- 580A) compared with current.

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