Small, mirrorless digital cameras with interchangeable lenses are on the upswing; Panasonic and Olympus have been joined by Samsung with the NX10 and Sony’s entry into the competition has just been formally announced. You have to wonder how long it might be before Canon and Nikon join the club.
The NX10 offers DSLR-like image quality, versatility and adjustability with sub-DSLR size and weight. The camera is easy to use for novices and experts alike, and offers a variety of shooting modes from fully automatic to fully manual, with a good assortment of adjustments for the latter modes.
The monitor/viewfinder ability to update the live view image to reflect actual exposure when compensation or other camera settings are changed is a nice touch that can greatly simplify image capture for both novices and pros. I personally like the handling of the mini-DSLR configured NX10 body better than the more boxy Panasonic GF1 I shot with back in October.
The camera came to the market with available lenses that cover a nice focal range, and additional lenses will be available by year’s end. The lenses we had for this review are advertised as Samsung designed and built and their optical performance was quite good. Samsung has shown a lens adapter for Pentax lenses and once that becomes available, NX owners will be able to tap the extensive Pentax “K” mount lens inventory as well.
Noise performance is on a par with the direct competition (to date) and AF acquisition time is in the middle of the class in good conditions. Shutter lag was somewhat disappointing; at 0.05 seconds, the NX10 has just enough of a lag to be noticeable (and a bit annoying). With Sony throwing its hat into the ring with the NEX 3/5, things are heating up in this class, but the NX10 is a cool way to go if you think that mirrorless is more.
- Very good still image quality and color
- Very good video quality
- RAW and JPEG still image options
- Built-in viewfinder
- Monitor/viewfinder display exposure changes real time in live view
- Shutter lag longest in the class
- Quirky user’s manual
- 72 dpi image output