Review: Samsung Galaxy NX
The camera/phone hybrid advances another step
There is no question about the Samsung Galaxy NX’s primary function: first and foremost, it’s a camera. And it’s a decent enough effort from Samsung. Swappable lenses and manual controls mean those who fancy themselves as a more serious photographer, above the point and shoot auto world, will be happy, while there are plenty of modes for the first-timer too.
You have a choice of a beautifully clear 4.8 inch touchscreen, or the electronic viewfinder when framing your photos. A small pop up flash will help shed some extra light when it’s needed.
With a 20 megapixel sensor and the lens combined, you get some great photographs.
The beauty of the Galaxy NX, however, is in the mashup between the Galaxy phone range and Samsung’s camera system. While previous Samsung cameras – the NX300 for example – allowed instant sharing to email, Facebook and the like over wifi, the Galaxy NX borrows even more features from the Galaxy range of phones.
It allows you to put a sim card in, compatible with 3G and 4G LTE networks, so you are no longer dependent on phone pairing or wifi hotspots. It’s also a full Android based camera, running Android 4.2 Jellybean; you can log into your Google account and download apps directly from the Play store.
That means you can not only check your Facebook profile as you’re uploading photos, but also download photo editors so you can touch up your pictures straight from the camera.
Because it’s a full Android system, you aren’t limited to just photo related apps though; you can have Angry Birds or Candy Crush on standby for the quieter moments, or even use the camera as a wifi hotspot for other devices if you’ve put a simcard in it. You can even download Netflix, if the mood takes you.
There were a few odd moments when the entire camera would vibrate because I’d received an email, or a Twitter message, making it feel more like a compact Android tablet or an every so slightly hobbled phone.
Like other Galaxy products, there is an element of voice control. Bu the voice controlled shooting in my tests was a bit hit and miss; at times the camera wouldn’t respond to a clear command, at others, it took a photo without warning. Generally, it responded better to a pleading or threatening tone of voice, which I doubt was the ultimate aim of Samsung.
Charging and storage is also more like the phones than your traditional camera. Although the battery is removable, it’s charged via micro USB cable, so if you’re already an Android phone user, that usual hunt for the battery charger will be eliminated. The Galaxy NX comes with 16GB of storage built in, which is plenty to take a few hundred photos or so without having to expand it, but if you need extra space, you can add a microSD memory card, the type commonly found in Android phones, to give yourself additional memory up to 64GB.
That flexibility is vital if you’re shooting a lot of video; the Galaxy NX shoots in 1080p, and will eat into the storage space in no time. Also, those apps you’re downloading to edit and share your pics will eat into your storage capacity too.
Overall, this is a great camera.Not only does it give you some great images but it’s easy to use too. However, there’s a steep pricetag attached. If convenience is something you prize, it’s worth the money; if you can stand to wait a few hours to email your masterpiece, or edit on your laptop, it may be a little too much to pay.
Price: Around €1500