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NX1 wins at the DPReview Awards 2015

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Guest Ebrahim Saadawi

I agree the nx1 is the best COMPLETE package for both stills and video in the past year. However, of course there are other cameras that perform better in two/three areas. A7s in absolute DR, 7DII in stills, etc, but as a do-it-all camera Samsung went all in with the nx1. Works great for everything. 

Best lens? debatable. Sigma & Canon are kicking ass in lens production. 

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EOSHD Pro Color for Sony cameras EOSHD Pro LOG for Sony CamerasEOSHD C-LOG and Film Profiles for All Canon DSLRs

I totally agree on the lens front.  The 16-50 f/2.0-2.8 ED OIS is a nice lens, especially if you're using AF in video mode... but I miss the gorgeous background bokeh I got from my Sigma 18-35 f/1.8.

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I'd also add that the 50-150/2.8 is, for my taste, an even better lens. It's outstanding. Of course its fl is less 'mainstream'.

 

P.s. Ebrahim, why do you say 7dii is better for stills? Sometimes I use a 7dii and, even if good, is not better than nx1. Probably a bit worse.

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Guest Ebrahim Saadawi

The 7DII for stills is an unbeatable tank, I rate it as the highest performing Canon DSLR in the company's history as the stills shooter, as it brought a 1DX into a 7D body for 1800$. It's just so damn robust and reliable for stills work. Perhaps the only area where there are better rivals outthere is landscape photography but for everything else, nothing really is like it. Over the NX1 if you use both you'd immediately notice how much nicer the 7D is, in the buttons, the grip, the user interface, the menu systems, the weight and lens mount. AF is especially an area where the 7DII outperforms all mirrorless cameras by a great margin, even outperforms the 1DX/D4s AF systems, it's the best stills AF system in the world today (and best video AF too but video is a weak point for the 7D so not really usefull). It's more robust, has a vastly better lens collection with IS & AF, much better autofocus for subject tracking and spontanous shoots (weddings, journalism, sports, event), gorgeous actual optical OVF with clever LCD layouts, dual card slots, higher ISO performance, 10fps with full mirror and mechanical shutter and dead-on AF slaps, larger buffer, the most weather sealed camera on the market, it's just a boring photography workhorse, no lags, no bugs, shoots and shoots.

The NX1 is a better complete camera as it still CAN replace the 7DII on most stills shooting AND has a top of the line video mode, a much more interesting deal, it also for some people a benefit in having an EVF if they prefer that for stills. 

We're a video site (that has a tendency to dislike Canon and doesn't accept any praise of their cameras) so the 7DII is a hated camera. It's a really soft image. So no thanks. 

But since we're at it, aside from sharpness it's a lovely video camera (something nobody knows/talks about it but it needs to be used to see it), which makes you mad why Canon crippled all this with low resolution. For example the Dual Pixel AF is a revolutionary feature, the lowlight performance in video mode is identical to the FF 5DIII, side by side it's 2 full stops more usable vs the nx1 especially after 3200 ISO, it has ZERO moire/aliasing artefacts,, DR identical to GH4/5DIII/nx1, the best implementation I've seen for uncompressed HDMI output (can choose any frame rates up to 60p, the screen stays on with lay overs with a clean output signal, it triggers all recorders, can output the punch in crop mode as a s16 crop with tack sharp image), it's one of the very few cameras that have a film 24p mode (not 23.97p which is called 24 on all the other cameras including the 5DIII), has the best liveview focus punch-in implementation, very neutral and accurately calibrated LCD panel, and on of the best colour renditions of skin tones and grass greens/hues of skies and objects, 

So it's obvious video is something they were pushing on the 7DII, but simply killed it at release by having the same 5DIII resolution, which is lower than 1080p by a good margin, making all 4K cameras deliver a hugely better overall image to work with at 4K resolution for noise reduction and downscaling/cropping. 

If Canon makes a 7DII/70D with a high resolution video it'd be first on line to pre order, but they just don't, for some reason, stuck at 720p-ish era. Until they do it I'll be shooting with the higher resolution GH4/nx1/A7s for video, as resolution is the number one element on top of the IQ list for my audience/clients, plus I get an EVF without the loup and peaking without ML so no. 

However, if Magic lantern cracks the 7DII raw, the card speed is capable of higher than 1080p resolution and perfect HD like the 5DIII raw with 14bit colour plus all the peaking/waveform/zebras features that comes with it, It'd be the best s35 image under 4000$ just like the current 5DIII. If they crack its raw recording I'll be replacing my GH4 with one. 

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Ok I see what you mean, we were looking at different things. For me the lighter overall package of nx1 is preferrable, along with its evf and the huge room for recovering shadows in pp (iso 100 pushed equals native higher iso, something which canon's sensors can't do). I also prefer the 16-50s and 50-150s over any similar canon lens.

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EVF is something that's hard to appreciate unless you've used it. I have Canon 6D, and after having used NX1 I simply cannot use 6D without the EVF. All too often people who compare Canon cameras to mirrorless don't realize how big a deal EVF is.

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The 7DII for stills is an unbeatable tank, I rate it as the highest performing Canon DSLR in the company's history as the stills shooter, as it brought a 1DX into a 7D body for 1800$. It's just so damn robust and reliable for stills work. Perhaps the only area where there are better rivals outthere is landscape photography but for everything else, nothing really is like it. Over the NX1 if you use both you'd immediately notice how much nicer the 7D is, in the buttons, the grip, the user interface, the menu systems, the weight and lens mount. AF is especially an area where the 7DII outperforms all mirrorless cameras by a great margin, even outperforms the 1DX/D4s AF systems, it's the best stills AF system in the world today (and best video AF too but video is a weak point for the 7D so not really usefull). It's more robust, has a vastly better lens collection with IS & AF, much better autofocus for subject tracking and spontanous shoots (weddings, journalism, sports, event), gorgeous actual optical OVF with clever LCD layouts, dual card slots, higher ISO performance, 10fps with full mirror and mechanical shutter and dead-on AF slaps, larger buffer, the most weather sealed camera on the market, it's just a boring photography workhorse, no lags, no bugs, shoots and shoots.

The NX1 is a better complete camera as it still CAN replace the 7DII on most stills shooting AND has a top of the line video mode, a much more interesting deal, it also for some people a benefit in having an EVF if they prefer that for stills. 

We're a video site (that has a tendency to dislike Canon and doesn't accept any praise of their cameras) so the 7DII is a hated camera. It's a really soft image. So no thanks. 

But since we're at it, aside from sharpness it's a lovely video camera (something nobody knows/talks about it but it needs to be used to see it), which makes you mad why Canon crippled all this with low resolution. For example the Dual Pixel AF is a revolutionary feature, the lowlight performance in video mode is identical to the FF 5DIII, side by side it's 2 full stops more usable vs the nx1 especially after 3200 ISO, it has ZERO moire/aliasing artefacts,, DR identical to GH4/5DIII/nx1, the best implementation I've seen for uncompressed HDMI output (can choose any frame rates up to 60p, the screen stays on with lay overs with a clean output signal, it triggers all recorders, can output the punch in crop mode as a s16 crop with tack sharp image), it's one of the very few cameras that have a film 24p mode (not 23.97p which is called 24 on all the other cameras including the 5DIII), has the best liveview focus punch-in implementation, very neutral and accurately calibrated LCD panel, and on of the best colour renditions of skin tones and grass greens/hues of skies and objects, 

So it's obvious video is something they were pushing on the 7DII, but simply killed it at release by having the same 5DIII resolution, which is lower than 1080p by a good margin, making all 4K cameras deliver a hugely better overall image to work with at 4K resolution for noise reduction and downscaling/cropping. 

If Canon makes a 7DII/70D with a high resolution video it'd be first on line to pre order, but they just don't, for some reason, stuck at 720p-ish era. Until they do it I'll be shooting with the higher resolution GH4/nx1/A7s for video, as resolution is the number one element on top of the IQ list for my audience/clients, plus I get an EVF without the loup and peaking without ML so no. 

However, if Magic lantern cracks the 7DII raw, the card speed is capable of higher than 1080p resolution and perfect HD like the 5DIII raw with 14bit colour plus all the peaking/waveform/zebras features that comes with it, It'd be the best s35 image under 4000$ just like the current 5DIII. If they crack its raw recording I'll be replacing my GH4 with one. 

I haven't shot with the 7D II, so I can't speak to it's photo side of things.  I shot for a few years on the 5D III, and I've preferred my experience on the NX1 to that.  I miss Canon's colors, I won't lie.  But I can get them pretty close on the NX1.  And I LOVE shooting stills with an EVF.  I hated snapping a photo, looking down at my LCD, adjusting the exposure, snapping another photo, looking down at my LCD, adjusting my exposure again, then snapping another photo and looking down at the LCD.  So much time wasted, and it wasn't practical at all for photojournalism. 

As for video,  I've shot with the C100 II many-o-times and I have found the AF on the NX1 is better than Dual Pixel AF on Canon cameras for video. The 2 features that make the NX1 the ultimate package for video is 1) the ability to change your rack focus speed (slow, normal & fast) and 2) the ability to touch for focus on their touch screen display (which is the best touch screen on any video / photo camera in the market, by a large margin).  I wasn't happy with my results with Canon's Dual Pixel because it only focuses on the center of the image.  I read that the 70D lets you select focus with their touchscreen display, but I haven't seen it in action and I know the 7D II doesn't have a touch screen display. Also, the NX1 autofocuses based on contrast... so if my subject is framed left or right, it's accurate in detecting my focusing point roughly 70-80% of the time.  And the times that it guesses incorrectly, I can simply touch the subject I want to be in focus and it corrects instantly.  For me, I tend to use AF when I'm following someone on a steadicam or a gimbal, and they do not stay perfectly center in my frame... but the NX1 does a reasonably good job of tracking with them.  The times I'm using a C100 and autofocus, if my subject moves slightly off center, the camera quickly autofocus to what is directly in center... and it looks goofy. So the NX1 AF seems to be a better fit for my needs. Check out this video I shot for a cycling company, using the NX1 on a gimbal and AF for 90% of the shots: 2016 Pactimo Video | Pactimo

I'd also add that the 50-150/2.8 is, for my taste, an even better lens. It's outstanding. Of course its fl is less 'mainstream'.

 

P.s. Ebrahim, why do you say 7dii is better for stills? Sometimes I use a 7dii and, even if good, is not better than nx1. Probably a bit worse.

I couldn't agree more.  I picked this up a few weeks ago and it has been a dream to shoot on.  I love the size of it! It's not too small like M 4/3 versions of this lens.  And it's not huge like Canon & Nikon's 70-200mm.  

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EVF is something that's hard to appreciate unless you've used it. I have Canon 6D, and after having used NX1 I simply cannot use 6D without the EVF. All too often people who compare Canon cameras to mirrorless don't realize how big a deal EVF is.

Used both, but I just can't get accustomed to EVF for stills. Always prefer the Nikon D800 to the NX1.

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Used both, but I just can't get accustomed to EVF for stills. Always prefer the Nikon D800 to the NX1.

Interesting. I went to the D5300 and was like, aw hell no. Didn't think I'd miss liveview that much (M43-only background). But to see what your  exposure does and how it will look (constant preview) is worth quite something to me. Ok, then I was like, well, I'll just use the D5300 in liveview then and forget about the viewfinder. That's nice and all, but it flips the mirror like three times in the process of taking a picture that way, it's crazy!

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Used both, but I just can't get accustomed to EVF for stills. Always prefer the Nikon D800 to the NX1.

Do you actually own an NX1? Just trying it out is not the same thing because optical VF folks tend to start out with disdain toward EVF, and it's only after some actual usage do they get enlightened.

Like most, I had used EVF way back with video cameras (I have the Canon GL2) and always preferred the nice, bright optical VF of the Canon SLRs (especially the full frame Canon 6D)...till I used the NX1.

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I may be alone in this, but I prefer Samsung's out of camera color and contrast to Canon's. It's more accurate, less oversaturated in the oranges/reds, and limits saturation with exposure like the Alexa. It's a very natural look. I even notice it in RAW stills, which leads me to believe it's as much a CFA/sensor design thing as a matrix/processing thing.

If it weren't for my investment in Micro Four Thirds glass, the ability to share native lenses with my BMPCC and my stills camera, and the H.265 workflow, the NX1 would be my next camera. Besides, if Samsung really does put IBIS in one of their new bodies, I think that would push me over the edge.

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Do you actually own an NX1? Just trying it out is not the same thing because optical VF folks tend to start out with disdain toward EVF, and it's only after some actual usage do they get enlightened.

I do, yes. Course the tiltable display is nice for framing and everything, but if I have the camera in my face, I prefer the direct view, no delay and higher resolution the pentaprism gives me. Sure you have to know your numbers, but it feels more intuitive and tactile to me. Once you're on a tripod and are using live view, it's another story, but even there I prefer the D800 because of exposure delay mode and the mirror up which are implemented very well. Not to talk about the final images which are always better on the Nikon. But I like the NX1, it's a nice stills camera. Just not up there with Nikon and Canon (liked the 6D even more ergonomics-wise and DSLR Controller is by far the best remote app). I doubt Samsung and Sony will ever really get there, nowadays it's all about buzzwords.

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Guest Ebrahim Saadawi

The good ol' OVF vs EVF debate. 

At this point it comes down to what you want in a viewfinder, that dictates which one is better. 

OVF 

-No Lag

-No noise

-No pixels

-No smearing, sides distortions

-Real-world optical view through the lens

-Eye quality Low light performance (instead of EVF that get grainy to +sensitivity and get laggier to lengthen shutter speed for lowlight)

-Room for separate AF/metering sensors (meaning the best OVF AF system is significantly better than the best on-sensor AF system, but it can vary on model-to-model basis)

-Saves A LOT of battery life. A LOT.

EVF

-''generally'' larger (compared to low-mid APS-C DSLRs, but not  to 7D/5D Huge OVFs)

-Image preview (WB/DOF/ISO), Peaking/zebras/punch-in 

-Image review/Going through menus

-Video of course

-The increase in sensitivity + lag - while makes it ugly - it can have a benefit in seeing in the pitch dark if you don't mind noise & lag.

 

Professional photographers seem to really prefer the real optical view benefits, but of course there are exceptions. It's something depends on the user.

For me, I'd rather have both. (an OVF and a Zucoto loup on the LCD -which is a pretty gorgeous EVF actually if you haven't used it-) Best compromise for me. I much prefer shooting stills through an OVF but video through an EVF of course. Maybe some company will create a DSLR that when switches to liveview an EVF slides in front of the OVF. Wouldn't that be a killer feature?

 

*BTW in video, side by side I see my Canon SLRs see much more colour variations and skin, green hues vs the nx1 that tends to give solid slick colours. Both have their charm but I prefer Canon colours, and prefer the Nikon's even more than Canon. Andrew touched on that subject recently with side by sides but you don't get the picture until you shoot them side by side. I love the nx1 colours, much better than the dreaded A7s and better than GH4. Very, clean. Friendly to skin too. It's not a weakness of the camera. 

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Well deserved. I've been quite convinced of this camera over the Sony A7S II in the past few weeks after looking at all the NX 1 footages.

Bro I bought one and I am using it with fd lenses. Wow ! Definitely put my a7s on ebay and cancelled my a7sii preorder. Sony makes great cameras but that blue channel clipping,price tag and ergonomics made me say hell no. NX1 is a great camera for me right now, I just need to practice with it of course

Except for Slog, FF, Zeiss lenses, better AF (I've owned them both), speedboosters and AF adapters for other lenses, AF with Canon and A-mount glass, third party lenses, and so on. Not much of a difference...

SMH

SLOG is way overrated. If you expose right regular rec709 is fine. I've been using cine4 & 1 with better results with the 8bit codec. Abd as far as full frame making a camera automatically magical is false. Sensors are getting so good that the gap between full frame and crop is shrinking. Its all about the aesthetic of the image and yeah you can get shallow depth of field all the way from micro 4/3 to full frame. If you want zeiss glass you can get their nikon mount milvus or zf line on any camera so theres not much of an argument here

People feel they're going out on a limb if they praise a new kid on the block like Samsung, it's so much safer to foam over Canon colors. You'll nee to be secure and confident to publicly acknowledge NX1's abilities. Not only is NX1 is a triumph of technology, it's also pioneering and game changing in more ways than one: H.265 and rapid firmware updates, to name a couple.

I've shot with & owned the GH3,GH4, Sony a7s and now the NX1 and I am satisfied with the Samsung. It has its quirks but whats held my attention are the frequent firmware updates. You never know when your gonna wake up to a magical Samsung firmware update that ups the video quality...

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