September 15, 2010: As tipped in Photo Counter last week, Samsung yesterday announced the launch of the $899 Samsung NX100, a mirrorless interchangeable model featuring an ‘i-Function’ lens – ‘a proactive lens communicating with the camera body’.
Samsung says it delivers total image control with fast manual settings to ensure quick and easy image capturing, and also provides customised settings which are optimised for the lens being used. The lens incorporates a conveniently-located i-Function button allowing users to scroll through manual settings, and a focus ring which is used to easily change parameters for each setting.
Like its predecessor, the NX10, the NX100 features an APS-C size sensor and a 3-inch AMOLED screen for easy and clear viewing. The NX100 also boasts fast AF and ISO up to 6400 for action shots.
‘Our aim is to dominate the mirrorless camera market…and the new NX100 is the embodiment of that goal.’
The NX100 will be available in Australia from October at an RRP $899 for the camera body plus one i-Function lens from a choice of either a Samsung 20mm wide angle Pancake lens or a Samsung standard zoom 20-50mm lens. A bonus Samsung flash will also be bundled with the body and lens kit for a limited time at launch.
The release was accompanied by an announcement of bold territorial ambitions from Samsung: ‘Our aim is to dominate the mirrorless camera market in the same way that we do in the DualView category, and the new NX100 is the embodiment of that goal,’ said president, Samsung Digital Imaging Division, Samsung Electronics.
‘We are the first to create a mirrorless camera with high-quality imaging technology which has been designed based on intuitive consumer insights from our in-depth consumer research.’ (At this stage Mr Park presumably drew a deep breath!). ‘This is why we believe that the NX100, alongside the NX10, will cement our leadership in this growing field. Our unique and pioneering i-Function Lens stands out from the competition as an example of our unparalleled innovation, which will appeal to every photographer.”
The NX100 also has a ‘lens priority mode’, providing scene options specifically designed for the lens being used – for example when a landscape lens is attached, the camera will immediately display the landscape mode. Additionally, when users change to a specialised lens, the camera will recognise the lens type and automatically configure the settings that would best match with the attached lens. This latter feature will work with future, specialised Samsung lenses.
Each lens is clearly marked with icons that illustrate their main usages, ‘so beginners can quickly understand which lens they need to select for any given scene’.
In playback mode, users can apply seven different effects to the picture, such as the vignette, soft focus, fish-eye, or miniature effects. The NX100 supports HD movie recording at 720P, plus a ‘Sound Picture’ mode, which can record audio when a still image is taken.
Samsung is also getting more serious about supporting its NX line with accessory lenses: At launch, the lens line-up includes a compact zoom 20-50mm lens for quality and portability. A 20mm wide angle Pancake lens will be introduced shortly after. Two additional specialised lenses will be available in the first half of 2011 – a 60mm Macro lens and 18-200mm Super Zoom lens.
Three more lenses will be introduced by the second half of 2011, including 16mm, 85mm, and 16-80mm lenses. The NX system will be further enhanced with more accessories, including an Electronic Viewfinder, Flash and GPS tracker.