New Kid in Town Samsung NX1 Puts Pressure on Sony a7, Panasonic GH4. Again.

by Hugh BrownstoneLeave a Comment

With a Gold Award win from dpreview, the Samsung NX1 [B&H | Amazon] is the best reason yet for accelerated release dates from Sony for an a7s Mark II and from Panasonic for a GH5

You’ve read about the NX1 at planet5D before – or if not, take a look at our initial coverage (from September 2014) or a more recent post highlighting Tony Northrup’s comparison of the NX1 [B&H | Amazon] to the GH4 [B&H | Amazon] and A7s [B&H | Amazon].

With internal 4K recording, a new 4K codec and very fast autofocus, the NX1 has been turning heads (OK, not all that glitters is gold: right now Samsung has a very limited lens selection, and the H.265 codec is not yet universally supported).

Adding its voice to the growing chorus of NX1 fans, has just given the NX1 its gold award. More interesting is to check out dpreview’s compare mode on their conclusion page and plug in the Panasonic GH4 and Sony A7s, two of our favorite cameras (and also very highly regarded by dpreview):

· while the a7s [B&H | Amazon] crushes the NX1 in low light/high ISO performance and squeaks by on connectivity, the NX1 holds its own or outpoints the a7s everywhere else, especially in build quality, ergonomics and handling, metering & focus accuracy, raw image quality, and performance.

· The GH4 [B&H | Amazon] is a closer matchup, exceeding the NX1 in JPEG image quality and low light/high ISO performance (a bit of a surprise, frankly) but falling short or just matching the NX1 everywhere else – notably in build quality, metering & focus accuracy, raw image quality, performance, connectivity, and value.

At $1,199, the Samsung NX1 [B&H | Amazon] comes in dramatically lower than either the Panasonic GH4 [B&H | Amazon] at $1,498 or Sony a7s [B&H | Amazon] at $2,498 (before adding another $1,695 – $1,995 depending on the model of the Shogun combo recorder/ monitor necessary for the Sony to capture 4K). Still, it’s rarely just about price – and this is where the NX1 remains vulnerable, especially around lens selection, dynamic range and low light performance.

Your mileage may vary.

Samsung NX1 Conclusion Review

Via Digital Photography Review:

Conclusion – Pros

  • 28.2 MP backside illuminated sensor
  • Hybrid AF system with phase-detect points covering 90% of frame
  • 153 cross-type AF points with industry-leading frame coverage
  • Mostly effective subject tracking
  • High quality 4K video performance
  • 4K 4:2:2 8-bit video out
  • Outstanding dynamic range and low light image quality
  • Bright OLED viewfinder with essentially no lag
  • 15 fps burst shooting
  • Touch screen
  • Built-in Wi-Fi
  • H.265 video codec

Conclusion – Cons

  • Lens family is limited at this time
  • Best AF performance limited to select lenses
  • Autofocus is less predictable in low light
  • Overly aggressive Jpeg noise reduction
  • No true live view during burst shooting
  • Noisy high-ISO video
  • Onerous procedure for downloading support software
  • H.265 video codec

Samsung NX1 conclusion

In fairness, the NX1 doesn't best every competitor in every area. Despite having an outstanding autofocus system it struggles to focus and track subjects in low light situations where some of its competitors don't. And while it's capable of producing great quality video, that too struggles in low light.

See full Samsung NX1 review at Digital Photography Review

Note: it is our policy to give credit as well as deserved traffic to our news sources – so we don't repost the entire article – sorry, I know you want the juicy bits, but I feel it is only fair that their site get the traffic and besides, you just might make a new friend and find an advertiser that has something you've never seen before

(cover photo credit: snap from Digital Photography Review)

Hugh Brownstone

Hugh Brownstone

Hugh is the founder of Three Blind Men and An Elephant Productions. He and the team write, direct, shoot, score, and edit web-centric films; conduct photo shoots; and write copy, white papers and blog posts. Hugh also writes screenplays (he recently optioned a TV pilot) and just published his first eBook (Apple's iPhone: The Next Video Revolution). If it's about telling stories, it's in their wheelhouse.

And always with the ambition of authenticity, humanity and wit.
Hugh Brownstone

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