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What is a Samsung NX1?
The Samsung NX1 is a arrange of camera we’ve always hoped Samsung would make. The association is a aristocrat of forward-looking tech in other areas, yet Samsung mostly seems to loiter a tiny behind with a fan cameras, where veterans Nikon, Canon and Sony mostly have a edge.
Samsung has used a knowledge with all high-tech to good outcome in a NX1 compress complement camera, though. It has some-more firsts in a bag than an Oxford University mechanism club.
Some are neat feathery extras, yet one is during a heart of picture quality. This is a initial APS-C camera to use a BSI sensor, a kind of performance-increasing pattern that lets a little sensors in mobile phones furnish somewhat-good images.
Offering some of a best picture peculiarity ever seen from an APS-C camera, alongside opening that positively shames many of a competition, a Samsung NX1 sets a new customary for CSCs and DSLRs alike. At £1299 it’s some-more costly than full-frame models such as a Sony Alpha A7, yet that doesn’t detract from one fact: this is a illusory camera.
SEE ALSO: Best Cameras Round-up
Samsung NX1 – Design and Handling
The Samsung NX1 is a compress complement camera, yet one that looks rather DSLR-ish. It’s large and chunky, with a figure designed some-more for palliate of doing than compactness.
This isn’t so many a disastrous indicate as something we need to cruise before buying. The NX1 is a identical distance to a Nikon D7100, an all-out DSLR.
Its accurate measurements are 138.5 x 102.3 x 65.8mm, and it weighs 550g yet a lens. It is not all that light, and we need to cruise a weight of a lens on top. Samsung’s reward S-class lenses are utterly heavy, and would be an apparent fit for a high-end camera like this. The 16-50mm S ED f/2-2.8 lens weighs a whopping 622g, creation a full package good over a kilo.
It might be an commanding prospect, yet we differently like a Samsung NX1 design. It offers a certain grip, and a unequivocally purify proceed to layout.
It’s clean, with clear lines and no unconnected hardware buttons to confuse. As with many cameras, a movement centres around a mode dial with a customary P/A/S/M modes, creation it easy to use for reduction gifted photographers.
The one niggle we have is that some of a duty buttons on a behind are only distant too small, creation some operations feel some-more fiddly than is unequivocally necessary. It’s not as if a Samsung NX1 lacks room for some somewhat incomparable buttons.
Manual control is good, though, with rotary dials for your ride and forefinger sitting to any side of a shiver button. Another pointer this is a genuine high-end camera is a secondary, monochrome arrangement on a tip plate, a good approach to fast check your settings and battery level.
Samsung NX1 – EVF and Screen
As a Samsung NX1 is a CSC rather than a DSLR, it uses an EVF rather than an visual viewfinder. However, this is only about a initial time we’ve reviewed a camera that offers an EVF that can smoke-stack adult to, and even exceed, an OVF.
That digital tech is finally adult to speed. The Samsung NX1 has a 2.36-million-dot electronic viewfinder, charity a arrange of arrangement fortitude that doesn’t feel compromised. Even yet we live in a universe of phones with some-more pixels than final year’s 65-inch TVs, camera EVFs are mostly desperately pixel-poor.
The NX1’s, though, is lovely. It’s discerning as good as sharp, too. With 5ms arrangement lag, there’s no discernable check between what’s on-screen and what you’d see with your eyes.
Of course, a high-quality arrangement alone isn’t adequate to trump a some-more normal visual viewfinder. You also get concentration peaking and 5x magnification, creation it simply illusory for manual-focus shooters.
If you’re new to digital concentration aids, a concentration peaking choice highlights in-focus areas of a preview image, giving we a many some-more arguable decider of focusing than only regulating your eyes and a digital display. This is a arrange of EVF we’ve been watchful for, and while it’s not utterly as intriguing as a FujiFilm X100T’s hybrid viewfinder, it is about as good. Its tangible fortitude is XGA: that we can consider of as a 4:3 homogeneous to 720p.
The shade on a behind of a Samsung NX1 is reduction of a standard-setter, yet it’s still unequivocally solid. It’s a 3-inch arrangement of 1037k dots, again regulating Samsung’s lucky OLED arrangement tech.
Unlike so many other high-end cameras, even mint ones, a NX1’s arrangement embraces new tech including a pieces that are customarily compared with a some-more infrequent character of photography. It offers hold control and a lean display. Some high-end cameras spin their noses adult during these facilities since they don’t fit with a ‘viewfinder and primer controls’ character of critical photographers. The law is they’re mostly useful.
The lean arrangement is good when we wish to fire above or next conduct height, while a sincerely good hold doing can be good when we do only wish to take your photography some-more casually. You can touch-to-focus and touch-to-shoot, and also use multi-touch to request concentration and bearing metering points separately. While Samsung has depressed a bit behind a foe in terms of things like pristine print peculiarity during times, it’s forward in these ‘smart’ areas.
What is a Canon EOS 7D Mark II?
The Canon EOS 7D Mark II is an refurbish to a classic. The strange EOS 7D was expelled 5 years ago, and has prolonged been deliberate kingship among APS-C sensor DSLRs. A modernise was prolonged due, though.
With faster detonate shooting, softened autofocus and many larger ISO range, a 7D MkII is clearly a higher camera.
What’s reduction certain is either a 7D MkII has unequivocally finished adequate to seem entirely adult to date in 2014. It misses a few facilities we’d like to see, such as Wi-Fi, 4K video and a lean screen, while for rapid sharpened – that should be one of a core strengths – it’s soundly beaten by a Samsung NX1 CSC.
This isn’t a quite energetic camera, and a miss of larger improvements is unsatisfactory when a £1599 cost tab shows no greeting to a really unbending foe from other quarters. With CSCs such as a Sony Alpha A7 and A7R operation charity full-frame sensors for identical or reduction money, and a ever-increasing speed of reduction burst-obsessed cameras like a Nikon D750 now not all that distant behind a EOS 7D Mark II, a advantages are on a wane.
However, in a many critical photographer elements of picture peculiarity and shooting/AF performance, a 7D MkII stays a good camera that’s a sound choice for people who have bought into a Canon lens system.
Canon EOS 7D Mark II – Design
The Canon EOS 7D Mark II is an refurbish of a camera that traditionally charity a good choice for wildlife and movement shooters who didn’t wish to compensate a arrange of income demanded by a Canon EOS 1D X or Nikon D4S. You get many larger speed than a Canon EOS 5D Mark III, a full-frame choice accessible during a same cost these days: £1599 body-only.
Body shape-wise, a Canon 7D Mark II looks really identical to a strange 7D. It’s a classical chunky-frame DSLR whose 148.6 x 112.4 x 78.2mm measure and 910g are out to interest to sincerely serious, normal photographers.
Like other high-end Canon DSLRs, a build is great. It uses a magnesium amalgamate body, and softened continue sealing means we can use a camera in only about any conditions. We suppose a 7D MkII might interest to wildlife or movement photographers, for whom a peculiar bit of torrential sleet is only partial of a hobby.
A brew of informed elements and new additions shows Canon is penetrating to interest to a existent hardcore assembly here. For example, underneath a 7D MkII’s rubber flaps you’ll find a micro-USB 3.0 pier for faster transfers, yet a camera still adopts a combo of CompactFlash and SD label slots, where a some-more new UHS-I and UHS-II SD formats have pushed CF serve into a past.
CF still has a place, of course, yet a latest high-speed SD cards have nothing of a opening issues formerly compared with a format. You can set a dual cards to record opposite record types, too.
Canon EOS 7D Mark II – Handling
While a physique of a EOS 7D Mark II is many like a predecessor’s, Canon has practical a few small tweaks. The Q Menu symbol lives only to a right of a LCD arrangement on a back, charity a same blueprint as a 5D MkIII.
One new underline is a thumb-operated dial slider on a back, that can be customised to change your primer controls. For example, during one fire we used it to make a front control dial, that is a categorical primer control alongside a back rotary dial, name ISO.
The sharpened knowledge stays familiar, though, with a locking mode dial charity a customary aperture/shutter priority modes, as good as primer and module modes. In common with other top-end DSLRs, there’s a delegate monochrome arrangement on a tip image that that displays simple settings info.
What is a Pentax K-S1?
The Pentax K-S1 is a DSLR with a difference, one that tries to interpose some of a lifestyle essence we see some-more ordinarily in compress cameras and, to a obtuse extent, CSCs.
What this means in use is that we can to select between loads of colour combinations besides tedious aged black, a figure is a small unusual, and that tools of a camera light-up during operation. It’s a DSLR, looked during from a somewhat contorted perspective.
We’re not assured by all a diversions from a normal Pentax has done here, yet a plain camera basis and vast lens library make it a sound first-DSLR choice for those who competence be put off by a character of some-more required models. Its 20.4-megapixel APS-C sensor can furnish good images.
At £470 with a 18-55mm pack lens, though, a Pentax K-S1 has fixed foe from a Canon 100D and Nikon D3300 for those who don’t caring too many about a singular style.
SEE ALSO: Camera Buyer’s Guide
Pentax K-S1 – Design and Handling
The Pentax K-S1 is an typical DSLR in pristine detailed terms, yet it positively doesn’t demeanour like one. Similar to other Pentax models of a final few years, to rejects a styling norms of this kind of camera, charity an altogether some-more charming look.
Only a executive partial of a physique that houses a DSLR essentials looks like that of a other DSLRs we review.
There are 12 colour options, including orange, blue and gold, with plain black on offer for those who wish a some-more normal look. These sorts of charming designs competence seem normal in Japan, yet they’ll still spin heads in a US and UK. But that’s a indicate — the Pentax K-S1 seems to wish to attract a younger assembly that doesn’t reason many batch in beardy camera heritage.
Colour isn’t a usually extraneous pattern change either. The Pentax K-S1 has lights on many of a categorical earthy controls as good as a frame of lights along a front, that acts as a countdown when holding a timed shot, or a approach to vigilance that a camera has achieved a face detection-based concentration lock. These light can thankfully be dimmed or incited off entirely.
Is this all unnecessary gloss? To some it is and always will be, yet we did find a light-up controls accessible for night shooting. Traditional DSLR shooters competence know their cameras so good that such light-up pieces would be useless. But, to repeat, that’s not a throng a Pentax K-S1 is unequivocally directed at.
The figure of a Pentax K-S1 is radical too. The DSLR-staple corpulent handhold has been wiped out, transposed by a many smaller grip. While we don’t get as certain a reason as we would with a incomparable one, with consider simple doing is still sincerely comfortable, with adequate room to put your fingers.
It lets a camera physique slim down a little, yet as a K-S1 uses K-mount DSLR lenses a bulkiness of a whole package will dynamic as many by a lens as a camera itself. The pack lens is a sincerely corpulent 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6.
All of a body-altering measures are in assist of a specific look. And it’s one that competence not apparently interest to any specific group. It’s a arrange of unconventional aesthetic, yet one of a past: a 1970s prophesy of a future. We can’t assistance yet consider of a Star Wars Stormtrooper helmet when looking during a white chronicle we have in to review.
It’s certain to polarise, with a change of adore and hatred maybe not expected to import in Pentax’s favour. The Pentax K-S1 also does some surprising things with a control layout.
There’s a vast steel primer control dial on a tip plate, that we found good to use. It’ll essentially hoop orifice or shiver speed depending on a mode you’re in, as usual.
Where things go off a rails is bit is when picking a mode. Instead of carrying an eccentric mode dial like many cameras of this grade, a Pentax K-S1 uses a dial that works around a directional pad on a back. It’s unbending and ungainly – a visible simplification that complicates what a camera is like to use. Thankfully, a tangible directional is sincerely easy to use notwithstanding being congested in with a mode selector.
Panasonic Lumix TZ70 – First Impressions from CES 2015
Unveiled during CES 2015, a Panasonic Lumix TZ70 is a superzoom camera we can fit into your cloak pocket. Given it doesn’t cost a earth possibly during £350, it’ll have we wondering what a locate is.
Well, this is a compress camera with a little sensor, and therefore it’s going to offer singular low-light performance. But a changes Panasonic has done given a Panasonic TZ60 are out to urge this, while also bringing a new modernising extras too.
Panasonic Lumix TZ70 – What’s New?
The many critical change for pristine picture peculiarity in a Panasonic Lumix TZ70 is one that competence primarily sound like a downgrade.
Like a TZ60, a TX70 has a comparatively little 1/2.3-inch sensor – some-more or reduction a default distance for a compress camera. However, a fortitude has been reduced. Where a comparison TZ60 is an 18-megapixel camera, this one has a 12-megapixel sensor.
The thought is that while there might be a unequivocally teenager scapegoat in fact prisoner in ideal lighting, a lower-res sensor should assistance urge low-light opening in a Panasonic Lumix TZ70. As sincerely dodgy low-light shot peculiarity was one of a categorical criticisms of a TZ60, it’s a essential move.
We didn’t get to exam it out on a uncover building of CES 2015 where we attempted out a TZ70 first-hand, yet we’ll do so in a full review. Let’s usually wish a sales people in PC World will be means to sell a hillside to a normal punter evidence-free too.
There’s one other vital change, and this is one that unequivocally helps a Panasonic Lumix TZ70 feel like an present camera: Panasonic has massively augmenting a peculiarity of a EVF.
The Panasonic Lumix TZ60 was a initial camera in a category to offer an electronic viewfinder, something that’s seen by some as required for a camera to be taken severely – presumption it doesn’t have an visual viewfinder, of course. Last year’s model’s EVF was, in hindsight, little some-more than a prototype.
Its 200k-dot fortitude was nowhere nearby high adequate to seem anything other than an hapless compromise. The Panasonic Lumix TZ70 is here to repair this, massively augmenting fortitude of a EVF to 1.16 million dots. It’s still sincerely small, yet a perspective is quality-wise now most closer to a picture you’ll see on a behind display, that is a 3-inch 1040k-dot screen.
The EVF also offers an eye sensor, definition a perspective will automatically switch between a shade and viewfinder yet we carrying to worry about dire fiddly little buttons on a back. For many, a EVF improvements will be a essential pull of a Panasonic Lumix TZ70.
Panasonic Lumix TZ70 – Design and Features
These dual critical changes aside, a Panasonic Lumix TZ70 looks utterly a lot like final year’s model. It’s alarmingly compress given a wizz size, creation it a good camera to take around with we 24/7.
Panasonic has done a few little pattern tweaks though. One of a apparent seems roughly pardonable – a contours of a tip image have altered a bit, with a some-more conspicuous ‘step’ usually past a mode dial. Is it to fit in some-more wiring for a softened EVF? Maybe.
The hold has also changed, charity a larger, smoother bend rather than usually a little rubbery outcrop on a front.
Naturally, a hold stays sincerely small, yet after a discerning feel we’re flattering happy with how a camera operates, with some-more than a curtsy to a keener photographers out there. The Panasonic Lumix TZ70 isn’t a camera that assumes you’ll wish to fire in full Auto all a time.
There’s a PASM mode dial adult top, and a well-spoken control ring around a lens to offer primer control that doesn’t feel close by a little measure of a behind plate.
The Panasonic Lumix TZ70 is also one of a few cameras of this form that offers RAW shooting, giving we larger control post-shoot.
Panasonic Lumix TZ70 – Lens and Sensor
We’re holding out for somewhat improved low-light opening compared to a TZ60, yet differently a Panasonic Lumix TZ70 is unequivocally most during a same turn as a predecessor. They both have 1/2.3-inch sensors and a same lens specs.
A 24-720mm lens gives we illusory versatility, generally as inbuilt visual stabilisation means we should be means to use most of a operation handheld in good lighting.
In some-more technical terms, a lens is not a marvel, though. Its limit orifice settings of f/3.3-6.4 opposite a operation meant you’ll need to use aloft ISO settings as shortly as a light conditions drop next what’s optimal.
By all means design a somewhat alleviation on a TZ60, yet there’s usually so most that can be squeezed out of a superzoom this little (and affordable) during this point.
Stepping behind to a lighter side for a minute, a Panasonic Lumix TZ70 has NFC and Wi-Fi, creation it sincerely easy to send photos to a phone on a fly.
The Panasonic Lumix TZ70 is a little yet critical refurbish to a TZ60 – yet then, we rather favourite that camera anyway. It’s also an critical approval on Panasonic’s partial that final year’s viewfinder usually unequivocally doesn’t cut it anymore.
While a introduction of this camera might see a TZ60’s cost plunge to too-good-too-pass-up levels, a TZ70 is a inestimable ascent if a cost opening isn’t overly huge.
Nikon D5500 – First Impressions from CES 2015
The Nikon D5500 is really matching to a D5300 it replaces. It looks as yet it’ll offer no discernible alleviation to picture quality, yet alters a pattern and underline set a tiny to give it a somewhat some-more present flavour.
A touchscreen and slimmer, lighter physique are in, while GPS has been sacrificed, presumably to keep a cost during a matching level. At £720 with an 18-55mm pack lens, it’s not slot income for what’s primarily a beginner’s DSLR. But as it offers entrance to a good Nikon lens library, there are few softened places to start.
We took a demeanour during a camera during CES 2015 forward of a review. It comes in red and black, yet we checked out a some-more normal black one.
Related: Panasonic Lumix TZ70 – First Impressions
The Nikon D5500 looks really many like a normal DSLR, and is matching to a D5300. However, countless tweaks to a pattern make it a softened physique for many than a last.
At 420g it’s 60g lighter than a D5300, and measuring 124x97x70mm it’s somewhat smaller in any dimension too.
You might think: smaller measure are going to mistreat a Nikon D5500’s handling, right? However, from a first-hand exam of a new camera, a feel has indeed improved.
Nikon has re-sculpted a D5500’s handgrip, creation it puncture deeper into a physique for a surer hold. A smaller, lighter physique with no detriment of doing is a indiscriminate improvement. Nice work, Nikon.
The other critical pattern change is that a Nikon D5500 now has a touchscreen. It’s a initial Nikon DSLR to use one – DSLRs mostly equivocate touchscreens as they can seem gimmicky and mostly are no softened than, or worse than, regulating earthy controls.
Once again, Nikon has done certain it’s a no-sacrifice upgrade. You still get a same earthy controls, including a back ride dial that creates changing settings in a PASM modes passed eay and quick.
It’s a 3.2-inch LCD 1,037k dot shade that is entirely articulated, definition we can lean it adult and down, as good as divided from a physique on a energetic hinge. It creates sharpened during impassioned angles with a Nikon D5500 a lot easier.
This accent is something a D5300 also has, yet – it’s only a reason component that has changed.
Other than a somewhat smaller, lighter support and touchscreen, a Nikon D5500 is intensely matching to a predecessor. They share a same 24.2-megapixel sensor and a same Expeed 4 processor.
Image peculiarity and opening should be more-or-less identical. You can fire during 5fps with a D5500, and a APS-C sensor should yield pretty good low-light opening – it’ll be a plain ascent from roughly any compress camera.
Despite regulating near-identical core hardware, Nikon does seem to have done some slight improvements, though. The really tip of a 100 – 25600 ISO operation goes from being an ‘extended’ (ie not recommended) mode to apropos partial of a customary ISO canon.
Nikon also claims to have softened a contrariety showing autofocus used when a Nikon D5500 is in Live View mode (where a preview picture is displayed on a back screen), by 20 per cent. You’ll ideally wish to spend many of your time regulating a viewfinder, though, that allows a 39-point proviso showing AF to flog in.
If these are pristine firmware improvements, it’s probable they’ll be combined to a D5300. But don’t reason your breath.
So distant it all seems like good news for a Nikon D5500: tiny improvements, yet improvements nevertheless. However, there is one thing missing. GPS has been cut out, definition we won’t be means to have your cinema automatically geo-tagged. It’s a shame, yet it does have Wi-Fi, vouchsafing we send photos to a phone comparatively easily.
The Nikon D5500 is a really regressive tweak of a renouned D5300. It doesn’t disaster with a picture peculiarity or performance, instead determining to make a camera a mite some-more accessible.
We’ll have to see either a touchscreen’s indeed value regulating when we get to a full review, yet we positively conclude a softened ergonomics. After all, a good organisation hold is one of a pivotal reasons to collect a DSLR over a smaller CSC.
What is a Sony Alpha A7 II?
The Sony Alpha A7 II is a supplement to a camera array that bowled us over final year. The Alpha A7 and Alpha A7R valid that CSCs could offer full-frame cameras though pier on a pounds in possibly weight or cost.
They were great, and are great. But a Alpha A7 II is here to residence some criticisms that stopped those technical marvels from being perfect.
Handling alterations and good 5-axis stabilisation make this a category act. But during £1499 it doesn’t come inexpensive for those looking to ascent from a strange A7.
Sony Alpha A7 II – Design and Handling
One of a issues with a strange A7 is that it doesn’t offer ideal blueprint and handling. It was a technical feat by trait of wise a full-frame sensor into a CSC body, though a Alpha A7 II creates poignant improvements in this area.
Sony has redesigned a grip, charity a some-more estimable DSLR-like feel, and rearranged a controls to yield some-more discerning operation. The shiver symbol now sits during a some-more ergonomic angle, there’s a new DSLR-style control dial next it and dual new tradition buttons on a tip plate.
The Alpha A7 II competence be a finessing of an existent design, though it’s an critical change that creates a camera feel some-more complete, and some-more serious. This second-generation offers some-more an clarity of being on-par with a high-end DSLR like a Nikon D750, rather than a lighter-weight cousin.
Sony has also altered a finish given final year’s model. Semi-gloss black has been transposed by a matt hardness expel into a magnesium amalgamate that, once again, smacks of a character of opposition DSLRs from Nikon and Canon. As good as looking altogether some-more serious, it has somewhat some-more friction, too.
With primer control dials on a front and behind of a Sony Alpha A7 II, it’s entirely tailored to a genuine enthusiast, lacking that clarity of being a cut-back alternative. So because would we collect a Nikon or Canon DSLR over this when we get a advantage of a smaller body?
One emanate with final year’s models remains: a lens preference still isn’t good compared with a longer-standing DSLRs. While it has strew some of a early adopter creakiness, there are reasons still to side with a aged guard. Those wanting a peep will also have to deposit in a prohibited shoe unit, as there’s no peep built-in.
Sony Alpha A7 II – Screen and EVF
The Sony Alpha A7 II facilities many a same EVF and back shade combo as final year’s model. It offers a pointy 3-inch, 1228k-dot vari-angle back display. It’s a non-touch screen, though differently offers really good sharpened coherence interjection to a ability to lean both adult and down.
Its EVF is a 0.5-inch 2.4-million-dot OLED model, with a rubber eyepiece that creates isolating yourself from a outward universe visually a lot easier – not to discuss some-more comfortable. For a many partial a EVF is great.
With an ultra-high modernise rate, good fortitude and 0.71x magnification it gets we a pointy and manageable perspective of your shot. However, a colour facsimile is not that good. Tones seem a small pale compared to both what your eyes see and how images demeanour by a back display.
You can get a closer to loyal tones by augmenting a liughtness a little, though given OLED panels are some-more than able of displaying full and abounding colours (often too rich), this is somewhat disappointing.
Sony Alpha A7 II – Features
While some high-end DSLRs continue to leave out what competence be deliberate connectivity basis like Wi-Fi, a self-consciously techy Alpha A7 II has more-or-less a lot. It offers Wi-Fi and NFC, vouchsafing we send photos to a phone and use a mobile device as a wireless shiver control.
It hooks adult to a Play Memories app, as used by other Sony cameras.
The one beating is something closer to a basics: battery life. It is not good. You’ll get 270 shots off a assign while regulating a EVF. Conversely, a Nikon D750, that competence be deliberate a full DSLR alternative, gets we 1,230 shots. For critical photographers looking for a camera to use on prolonged sharpened trips, this arrange of stamina competence taint a advantages of a smaller distance of a body.
Of march such stamina competence be ideally excellent for weekend photographers looking for a smaller camera that competence inspire them to take a thing out some-more often. Just cruise where your priorities distortion before jumping to any conclusions.
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