Samsung unveils its new flagship NX1 camera for photo pros

Samsung unveils its new flagship NX1 camera for photo pros

Samsung has launched the NX1 SMART Camera — its new flagship model — just in time for tomorrow’s opening of the Photokina 2014 Trade Show.

Offering competition to the likes of the Panasonic Lumix GH4 and the Olympus OM-D line, photographers can use this sturdy, lightweight compact mirrorless interchangeable lens camera to replace or augment a high-end DSLR for shooting sports, nature, weddings, portraits and video. Speaking of video, the camera’s Ultra High Definition (UHD) video feature shoots up to 4K footage. On top of that, Samsung layers advanced connectivity features.

As the top-ranked camera of its fleet, the NX1 is specifically targeted to advanced and professional-level photographers. It weighs in at a little over a pound, with dimensions that are compact, but not diminutive: 5.5 x 4.0 x 2.5 inches.

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With this release, Samsung also debuts the NX 50-150mm f/2.8 S OIS telephoto lens, adding to its line of professional “S” lenses — something Samsung will need in order to attract and retain high-end users.

The NX1 features a 28MP back side illuminated CMOS sensor, and an updated NX AF System III auto focus, which provides 205 Phase Detect AF points covering 90 percent of the frame. The camera is capable of continuous shooting at 15FPS while simultaneously tracking focus.

The system also has a patterned AF Assist Beam with up to 15m reach for low-light capture. An advanced algorithm facilitates the camera’s Auto Shot feature for action scenes, predicting the right time to trip the shutter.

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While not ruggedized, both the NX1 and the new lens feature a magnesium alloy build that weather seals for dust- and water-resistance. The camera is designed to be handy and convenient, with a top deck LCD panel for quickly confirming settings such as aperture, shutter speed, ISO, white balance, AF, drive and battery life.

An updated DRIMe V image processor works with the camera’s noise reduction technology to improve high ISO shots.

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New technology packed into this unit promises to make life easier for videographers. Wide Phase Detection allows the camera to track subjects almost anywhere in the frame, regardless of  location. The camera employs the highly efficient HEVC Codec (H.265) for fast recording and easy storage. Phase Detect AF during movie recording provides for stable and steady shots. Users can also share videos directly to any Samsung UHD TV via Wi-Fi.

Other nifty details include a three-inch, 720 x 480 touch-screen AMOLED tilting display, electronic viewfinder with eye contact sensor and a series of built-in camera effects.

Connectivity

What’s the point of shooting if you can’t share immediately, some might ask? The NX1’s Bluetooth 3 Tag & Go function pairs the NX1 with NFC capable smartphones and tablets for easy and immediate photo distribution. A Photo Beam feature allows for zero configuration transfer of images or videos to a smartphone or tablet by just touching the two devices together, and a MobileLink feature lets users select multiple images to send to four smart devices at once.

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AutoShare sends every photo you take to your smartphone or tablet and the Remote Viewfinder Pro function enables control of the NX1 from a smartphone, allowing shooters to zoom and snap remotely.

Fast telephoto lens

The new Samsung 50-150mm f/2.8 S lens is the second in the series, featuring an improved Ultra-Precise Stepping Motor (UPSM), which Samsung says is three times more precise in controlling and focusing on subjects. Advanced Optical Image Stabilization (OIS) improves performance at low shutter speeds.

All of the lens controls, focus, zoom and OIS, are located in a single function zone on the side of the lens.

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The NX1 (body only) is priced at $1,499.99. An NX1 Bundle (including battery grip, additional battery, battery charger and the 16-50mm S Lens) is available for $2,799.99. The 50-150mm f/2.8 S lens costs $1,599.99. Availability is still being determined.

Samsung NX1

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