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Showing posts from May 2, 2010

NX10: Using the Lenses

Launched together with the NX10 are Samsung's three lenses, namely, the 30mm F2.0 pancake, the 18-55mm F3.5–5.6 and the 50-200mm F4.0-5.6 zoom lenses.  Presumably, we have all checked out the scientific lab tests of them done by the big sites.  Here we offer some subtle observations about the lenses made during the test period.Image Quality1) The lenses are not of premium optical quality but you certainly pay for what you get.  Images produced by the three lenses are good in the centre but noticeably less so along the edges as shown in the following two photos and the 100% crops from them.2) Also, the images seem to be a wee bit flat, lacking the same sense of depth as seen in GF-1's and GXR A12's images.  Such shortcomings are less for the pancake lens and more pronounced for the zoom lenses.3) Barrel distortion is not an issue.  As for shake correction, it gives the user an elbowroom of about four stops down the safe shutter speed.Bokeh and Focusing4) The pancake lens pr…

NX10: The Tough Proposition of Viewfinder

A body with a hump: necessity or eyesore?Samsung NX10 is the first camera of its kind which incorporates a viewfinder in the camera body. Some photographers question the necessity of doing this but to me, a viewfinder is necessary for photography.Using a viewfinder at least looks cooler.This personal preference is rooted in twenty year of using a SLRs. There are two cogent argument for using a viewfinder. First, a viewfinder allows the photographer to concentrate on doing the technical tweaking for the shots. Just because this is the case doesn't mean that the LCD (AMOLED in NX10's case) screen can't do the trick. But in comparison, seeing the scene through the viewfinder can effectively afford the photographer to feel the scene much better.The Benefits of the ViewfinderThis is because the viewfinder offers the man and woman behind the camera an exclusive space to mind their own business and envisage the final image without the interferences of the superfluous element…

NX 10: Picture Wizard, Exposure Latitude and White Balance

As a supplement to yesterday's post on the menu system, we'll dig into some related tools and a weakness of the NX10.Picture WizardFunctions similar to the Picture Wizard are also offered in the GF-1 and GXR under different codenames.  What makes NX10's stand out is not the gimmick per se but the accessibility and flexibility bestowed by the smart menu system.The quick accessibility to adjust each of the 12 "moods" under the Picture Wizard– three are customisable – invites the user to really use it.  This function can be swiftly accessed and activated from the quick menu through a few presses on the Fn button and arrows keys.  For this reason, I have found myself using this function more often than when testing the GXR and GF-1.This reveals the truth that if some functions of a camera are great but we never spend time again with them after the first try, it could be because of their bad accessibility which deters us from using them.As shown above, the 9 pre-set &…

NX10: Smartest Menu System Ever

Instead of the mystical belief that the focusing speed is the strength of the NX10, I would say that its menu system is simply the most fantastic about it.  In this post, you will be introduced the good things about the menu system which is swift, easily accessible and highly user-friendly.  If you tweak the camera a lot, you will know how useful and helpful such a menu system will be.Even in the proper menu, Samsung has successful kept the functions in each tab within  the five rows.  That is to say, users don't have to scroll up and down but only shift left to right for surfing through the functions.  This is much, much better than what are offered by its competitors.The NX10 has a unique menu system which is so well thought-out that the users are actually discouraged to use the menu.  This is not sarcasm.   As the focusing speed is crucial to a camera, the accessibility and user-friendliness of the menu system can also do a big favour to photographers doing photos at critical m…

NX10: Full Size RAWs and JPEGs

While more thoughts about the NX10 are being penned,  let the images speak for themselves first. As always, we are not following the beaten track to pixel-peep the images for you. The usefulness of tediously looking into the magnified images for the IQ is not obvious to me. With sensors of roughly the same large size, the comparable serious compacts produce images of a quality good enough to most users. Moreover, as different cameras have their own image characteristics, you will somehow prefer this camera's images to another's. It is more a matter of taste.That said, looking at the images at full-size or screen size gives you an impression of how you'd like them. Particularly, comparing them for the high ISO results, you know what to anticipate and whether you can use the camera to suit your photographic styles.So the full-size files are given as follows:- Four shots were taken with the NX10 in RAW plus JPEG files at similar locations as done with the GF-1 and GXR A12, wi…

NX10 Field Report: The Body

At long last, the photos taken with the NX10 sprawling in the computer have been arranged neat and tidy. We are ready to share with you the insights and findings of our NX10 field report.The loan items include the camera body and the three lenses, namely, the 30mm F2.0 pancake, the 18-55mm F3.5–5.6 and the 50-200mm F4.0-5.6 zoom. Regrettably, the flashgun was not available for loan this time.The NX10 is the latest to join the fold of the so-called EVIL (Electronic Viewfinder, Interchangeable Lens) cameras, a name which is outright bad taste but increasingly widely known and used. We would rather call such cameras serious compacts.Samsung has unequivocally and seriously proved its agenda of owning the fledging market of serious compacts by offering the system at lower prices with complete choices of photographic paraphernalia. On paper, the NX10 is comparable to, if not superior than, its competitors. So, is Samsung set to succeed with the NX10?We are not going to, and cannot, ma…

Pathetic

This is off topic.The Shanghai Expo was open on May Day.  From the news report, it is set to showcase the real face of the modern Chinese comrades.  Judging from the glimpse of some stunting acts of the visitors from Mainland China in Hong Kong Disneyland Park, we can safely forecast the common sights in the expo site for the months to come: - parents bringing young children to pee on the floor around corners- some person lining up in front of you is suddenly joined by his other ten friends and relatives- people unfolding their picnic on the chosen spots- litters around- pushing and elbowing and shouting by people trying to squeeze into the jam-packed expo shuttle busesEqually pathetic from across the ocean is this, which I watched on May Day: