What to make of the Galaxy NX? As a digital camera it certainly offers up image and video quality superior to that of a smart phone camera, with the ability to customize camera performance with a variety of interchangeable lenses. Overall performance is pretty good, still image quality and video are pretty good as well, and the camera impresses me as performing at or near the level of a competent entry-level DSLR. As a “smart” device it offers up 3G/4G LTE/Wi-Fi connectability along with apps and features of the Android operating system, but without the capability to make a phone call (without a VoIP or Skype app). The connectability feature alone makes the camera an intriguing choice as a work tool for someone in a business where rapid processing and transfer of images is a major consideration. Daily print media such as newspapers comes to mind…I just don’t envision the Sports Illustrated guys on the sidelines at the Super Bowl shooting with a Galaxy NX. What formally would have required a camera and a phone/tablet/laptop can probably now be accomplished with a single instrument, with the Galaxy NX packing post processing options to massage images even further before shipping them onto their ultimate destination.
In the case of the Galaxy NX, cost might be the 800 pound gorilla in the room. For someone who’s already got a smart phone a DSLR with a Wi-Fi capability can be had for much less than the $1500 going price for a Galaxy NX kit. Even if you don’t currently have a smart phone, service providers can put you into a pretty high-end model for a couple hundred dollars or less on a multiyear service contract and that Wi-Fi capable DSLR still gets you in business for less than the price of the Galaxy NX. Assuming, of course, that you can get along with texting/messaging instead of a voice component.
But for someone content to stay connected without the need to directly speak to people, the Galaxy NX might be a way to go. On a vacation, for example, you could take your Galaxy NX along with a couple lenses to give you a nice focal length range and have decent photos and connectability in a single package – the camera just seems too bulky for everyday use for texting or messaging alone. Finally there is always the intangible “cool” factor–and frankly, the Galaxy NX idea of a decent camera combined in a single platform with Android operating system connectability, applications and performance seems kind of cool. The only question now is how many people are willing to spend $1500 for cool.
We applaud Samsung for designing a camera that has seamless connectivity while giving us the added functionality of interchangeable lenses. We also love the forward thinking that goes into moving technology to the next level. They have made it incredibly easy to automatically sync your images to social media or even a cloud storage service, but the immense amount of apps and Andriod functionality might actually be distracting from the camera’s native purpose–to take great photographs.
- Unique combination of camera performance and Android connectability in a single package
- Very good still image and video quality
- Good continuous shooting rate
- Feature-rich platform due in part to Android system
- Good high ISO noise performance
- Use of touchscreen and extensive menus for camera settings can slow operations
- In-camera battery charging