Samsung NX30 Review

By

Review posted 06/27/2014

Quick Take
Pros
  • NX30 shoots extremely sharp and well exposed photos
  • Both RAW and JPEG formats available
  • Camera works extremely fast with especially strong autofocus capabilities
  • Great mix of basic and advanced shooting options
  • Touch screen makes this advanced camera easy to use
  • Great to have articulated display screen
  • Addition of electronic viewfinder expands this camera's versatility
  • Multiple wireless connectivity options available
  • Wi-Fi capabilities are among the easiest to use on a camera in the current marketplace
  • Camera's ergonomics are great
Cons
  • High ISO settings tend to show some noise
  • Video results could be a little better
  • Camera almost feels too lightweight with a bit too much plastic
  • Camera is larger than most mirrorless ILCs
  • Extendable EVF feels like overkill or a gimmick when paired with articulated display screen
  • Price could be a little lower
  • Battery compartment and memory card compartment are together, rather than separate memory card compartment on side panel
Bottom Line
The Samsung NX30 is a strong contender in the upper end of the mirrorless interchangeable lens camera category. It offers plenty of great photography features, including all of the advanced shooting modes you'd expect, along with fast performance and very good image quality. The physical design of the NX30 is outstanding, with plenty of buttons and a right-hand grip that make this model feel a bit like a DSLR, but with a thin enough camera body that it still takes advantage of its mirrorless design. Add in an electronic viewfinder, touch screen display that's articulated, and built-in wireless connectivity options, and the NX30 has all the bells and whistles you could want in an interchangeable lens camera. The starting price with a kit lens is a bit high, and video quality could be better, but the NX30 is a very nice Samsung ILC offering. Read more in our Full Conclusion.
NX30 and 18-55mm 2.jpg
At the beginning of 2014, Samsung's award-winning NX-series got a new sibling soon, in the form of the NX30. It features a 16MP CMOS image sensor mated to the DRIMeIV Image Processor for faster shooting (1/8000 sec shutter and 9 FPS continuous shooting), improved performance in lower lighting conditions, as well as the the NX AF (Auto Focus) System II for a quicker and more even focus. In terms of viewfinders, there are two. The first is a Tiltable Electronic Viewfinder (2.359K dots); the second a 3.0-inch Super AMOLED Swivel and Touch Display. If you need to shoot video, the NX30 has you covered. It can not only record Full HD 1080p movies in 2D, but also in full stereo 3D (with the optional 45mm F/1.8 2D/3D lens). And, there's a microphone input and Live HD Streaming, via the HDMI output, to connect an external monitor or to record footage directly to an external recording device.

The NX30 also boasts the ability to customize your settings, thanks to two Custom Modes on the dial. And, with i-Function and i-Function Plus, shutterbugs of all experience levels can access certain settings, like shutter speed or aperture, at the touch of a button. You can even customize and reprogram existing buttons.

Like most ILC cameras, the NX30 features WiFi and NFC (Near Field Communication) for tethering your camera to compatible smartphones and tablets. With these two technologies, you have access to the following: 

"The 'Tag & Go' function lets users tap and share memories instantly and easily, pairing the NX30 with NFC enabled smartphones and tablets. The Photo Beam feature allows the transfer of an image or video to a smartphone or tablet by simply touching the two devices together with no other configuration needed. MobileLink lets users select multiple images to send to four distinct smart devices at one time, so everyone can treasure photos without the need to take repetitive shots on each individual device. AutoShare automatically sends every photo you take instantly to your smartphone or tablet and the Remote Viewfinder Pro function enables control of the NX30 from a smartphone, allowing the user to zoom and snap shots remotely yet still have full visibility of the scene, opening up new photographic possibilities. Manual settings can still be accessed, including shutter speed and aperture, so that photographers can retain camera control yet have another option as to how they want to frame their shot."

Finally, just like the newly announced GALAXY Camera 2, the NX30 comes pre-loaded with the Dropbox app, so users can instantly backup files in the cloud. At this time, it's not clear if buying the NX30 earns you extra free storage, or just the standard amount given to all new customers, which is around 5GB.

Samsung NX30 Features
  • 20.3MP APC-C CMOS Image Sensor
  • DRIMeIV Image Processor
  • NX AF (Auto Focus) System II
  • 1/8000 sec Shutter Speed
  • 9 FPS (frames per second) Continuous Shooting
  • Tiltable Electronic Viewfinder (2.359K dots)
  • 3.0-inch Super AMOLED Swivel and Touch Display
  • Full HD 1080p Video Recording
    • 3D Video (with optional 45mm F/1.8 2D/3D lens)
    • 3.5mm microphone input
    • HDMI live streaming (@ Full HD 30p)
  • ISO 100-25600
  • OIS (Optical Image Stabilization) Duo
  • WiFi & NFC (Near Field Communication)
    • Tag & Go
    • Photo Beam
    • MobileLink
    • AutoShare
    • Remote Viewfinder Pro
  • Pre-loaded Dropbox app
  • 2 Custom Modes
  • i-Function
  • i-Function Plus
  • SD card slot
  • Li-ion battery (good for up to 360 shots)

The NX30 is available now, with a suggested retail price of $999.99. See our buy box in the upper right hand corner of this page to see the best pricing currently online.

Additional Product Views
NX30 and 16-50mm 2.jpg
NX30 2.jpg
NX30 and 16-50mm 4.jpg
NX30 and 16-50mm 5.jpg
NX30 and 18-55mm 4.jpg
NX30_03 (1).jpg
Samsung_NX30_displays-tilt.jpg

Visitors of Steves can visit the stores below for real-time pricing and availability. You can also find hot, soon to expire online offers on a variety of cameras and accessories at our very own Camera Deals page.