Samsung Galaxy NX Review

3.5
October 1, 2013 | Mark Goldstein |

Image Quality


All of the sample images in this review were taken using the 20.3 megapixel SuperFine JPEG setting, which gives an average image size of around 6.5Mb.

The Samsung Galaxy NX produced images of excellent quality during the review period. The 20.3 megapixel APS-C CMOS megapixel sensor used in the Galaxy NX produces noise-free JPEG images at ISO 100-800, with ISO 1600 also looking very good. ISO 3200 and 6400 only show a little noise, while the fastest settings of ISO 12800 and 25600 are quite a lot noisier and suffer from softening of fine detail and a loss of saturation, but the images are still perfectly usable for small prints and resizing for web use. The Galaxy NX does apply quite a lot of noise reduction to the JPEGs, as demonstrated by the RAW files which have more noise at the comparable high ISO settings.

The images were a little soft straight out of the Galaxy NX at the default sharpening setting and ideally require some further sharpening in an application like Adobe Photoshop, or you can change the in-camera setting for JPEG files. The night photograph was excellent, with the maximum shutter speed of 30 seconds and bulb mode of 8 minutes allowing you to capture plenty of light.

Noise

There are 9 ISO settings available on the Samsung Galaxy NX. Here are some 100% crops which show the noise levels for each ISO setting, with JPEG on the left and RAW on the right.

JPEG RAW

ISO 100 (100% Crop)

ISO 100 (100% Crop)

   

ISO 200 (100% Crop)

ISO 200 (100% Crop)

   

ISO 400 (100% Crop)

ISO 400 (100% Crop)

   

ISO 800 (100% Crop)

ISO 800 (100% Crop)

   

ISO 1600 (100% Crop)

ISO 1600 (100% Crop)

   

ISO 3200 (100% Crop)

ISO 3200 (100% Crop)

   

ISO 6400 (100% Crop)

ISO 6400 (100% Crop)

   

ISO 12800 (100% Crop)

ISO 12800 (100% Crop)

   

ISO 25600 (100% Crop)

ISO 25600 (100% Crop)

File Quality

The Samsung Galaxy NX has 3 different JPEG image quality settings available, with SuperFine being the highest quality option, and you can also shoot in RAW format. Here are some 100% crops which show the quality of the various options, with the file size shown in brackets.

20M SuperFine (6.04Mb) (100% Crop) 20M Fine (3.89Mb) (100% Crop)
   
20M Normal (2.25Mb) (100% Crop) 20M RAW (28.5Mb) (100% Crop)

Sharpening

Here are two 100% crops which have been Saved as Web - Quality 50 in Photoshop. The right-hand image has had some sharpening applied in Photoshop. The out-of-the camera images are a little soft at the default sharpening setting and benefit from some further sharpening in a program like Adobe Photoshop. You can also change the in-camera sharpening level.

Original (100% Crop)

Sharpened (100% Crop)

   

Flash

The flash settings on the Samsung Galaxy NX are Smart Flash, Auto, Auto+Red-eye reduction, Fill-in, Fill-in+Red-eye reduction, 1st Curtain, 2nd Curtain and Off . These shots of a white coloured wall were taken at a distance of 1.5m.

Flash Off - Wide Angle (18mm)

Flash On - Wide Angle (18mm)

ISO 64 ISO 64
   

Flash Off - Telephoto (55mm)

Flash On - Telephoto (55mm)

ISO 64 ISO 64

And here are a couple of portrait shots. Neither the Auto setting or the Red-eye reduction mode caused any amount of red-eye.

Flash On

Flash On (100% Crop)
   

Red-eye reduction

Red-eye reduction (100% Crop)

Night

The Samsung Galaxy NX's maximum shutter speed is 30 seconds and there's also a Bulb setting of up to 4 minutes, which is great news if you're seriously interested in night photography. The shot below was taken using a shutter speed of 15 seconds at ISO 200. The camera takes the same amount of time again to apply noise reduction, so for example at the 15 second setting the actual exposure takes 30 seconds.

Night

Night (100% Crop)

Optical Image Stabilisation

The Samsung Galaxy NX uses a lens-shift anti-shake mechanism, which allows you to take sharp photos at slower shutter speeds than other digital cameras. To test this, we took 2 handheld shots of the same subject with the same settings. The first shot was taken with anti shake turned off, the second with it turned on. With anti shake turned on, the images are noticeably sharper than with anti-shake turned off.

Shutter Speed / Focal Length

Anti Shake Off (100% Crop)

Anti Shake On (100% Crop)

1/13 sec / 27mm
     
1/5 sec / 83 mm

Dynamic Range

The Samsung Galaxy NX has a Dynamic Range expansion mode with three settings - Off, Smart Range+ and HDR, with the latter setting providing the biggest difference.

Off

Smart Range+

   

HDR

 
 

Entry Tags

hd video, hd, compact, review, 1080p, wi-fi, wireless, csc, touch-screen, RAW, dslr, touchscreen, micro four thirds, touch, 20 megapixel, samsung, smartphone, nfc, APS-C, wi fi, compact system, android, 4g, LCD, i-Fn, i-Function, 3g, galaxy, 8.6fps, nx, 4.8 inch LCD, galaxy nx, Samsung Galaxy NX Review

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