Samsung NV10 Review
The NV10 has five white balance presets (daylight, cloudy, fluorescent H & L, tungsten) in addition to the default auto mode. There is also a custom (measured) manual white balance option. In our tests the auto white balance system worked perfectly outdoors and in bright mixed light. It also deals with fluorescent light very well. The only 'problem' area is incandescent (tungsten) lighting, where the auto WB and the tungsten preset both produce very warm color casts. If you prefer a more neutral tone you'll need to switch to the custom/manual mode.
|Auto White Balance||Fluo Preset||Auto White Balance||Incandescent preset|
|Fluorescent light - Auto white balance Average,
Preset white balance Average
|Incandescent light - Auto white balance poor,
Preset white balance poor
As is common to most compact digital cameras the NV10's macro mode is most effective at the wide end of the zoom, where you can get as close as 4cm, capturing an area just under 5.5cm (2.1 inches) across. At the long end of the zoom the performance is less impressive - 50cm subject distance capturing an area just under 14cm wide. There is inevitably some distortion and corner softness when shooting very close up at the wide end, much less so at the long end. Focus is a bit slow in macro mode, but no worse than most competitors. If you find the 80cm closest focus distance in non macro mode too limiting (we did) you can switch to 'Auto Macro' mode (which frees up the entire 4cm to infinity range), though again this does slow down focusing a little.
The NV10 can capture movies at up to 640x480 pixels (VGA) at 30 fps. Movies are saved as AVI MPEG-4 files using the DiVX codec. This means they're small, but you do need to install the decoder on your PC to view them. This is supplied for Windows but Mac users need to find and download it themselves.
The DiVX movies are very small (it's a very efficient compression), and quality is okay, though nothing special (they're a bit soft and look very compressed). You can zoom whilst shooting, though this tends to cause the focus to fail briefly. You can also, unusually, pause recording. There are some rudimentary in-camera movie editing controls.
To download a movie (with pause) saved in QuickTime format click here
Sample movie: 640 x 480 pixels @ 25 fps
Click on the thumbnail to view the movie (caution: large file!)
Resolution is surprisingly good - certainly well on a par with other 10MP cameras we've tested and a lot better than most 7 or 8MP models. They're not the cleanest results we've ever seen (a bit over-sharpened) but in terms of sheer detail there's nothing to complain about here.
|Click here for the full resolution test chart||
resolution 1750 LPH
resolution 1700 LPH
Distortion and other image quality issues
The Z1000 exhibits moderate distortion at the wide end of the zoom - 1.1% barrel distortion (click here for test chart) - on the low side of average for this type of camera. There is no measurable distortion at all at the long end of the zoom (click here for test chart).
On a positive note the NV10 produces consistently sharp results and at ISO 100 and 200 the output is bright, punchy sharp and very clean, with no real noise problems - certainly nothing you'd worry about in prints or viewed on even the largest screen. Exposure is generally very good, though not infallible, and focus spot on most of the time (we did experience a few occasions when the focus failed entirely, saying it was in focus when it was obviously not). All but 1 or 2 shots in 100 also had perfect white balance.
But there are, inevitably, problems. The biggest - and to be honest the NV10's most serious flaws - are the excessively high saturation and contrast levels (which can't be changed). In dull conditions the steep tone curve and high saturation are great for adding a bit of punch to gray, lifeless scenes, but once the sun comes out the result is often clipped highlights or (more commonly) clipped shadows - or both, and a camera that is quite sensitive to exposure errors. Primary colors (especially reds, yellows and greens) aren't just loud; they are the visual equivalent of being shouted at through a megaphone. The high saturation (particularly the reds) sometimes leads to channel clipping, causing subtle tonal information to fill in with flat color. I found that virtually all the pictures I took in bright light needed work with Photoshop's HIghlight/Shadow controls to flatten out the tones a little (though there's little you can do with the clipped reds and yellows). I'm not sure if Samsung chose to use such a harsh tone curve to mask noise or to produce punchy 'consumer friendly' results, but for those of us who like a more subtle approach - or want to post-process - a menu for turning down the contrast and saturation would have been most welcome.
As the example here shows there is actually a lot more detail in the shadows than a first glance at the out of camera JPEGs suggest.
The image on the left has had the contrast adjusted with a quick application of Photoshop's HIghlight/ Shadow tool (slightly overdone for emphasis) - lifting the shadows reveals a little more noise but a lot more detail.
|Out of camera result||After highlight/shadow and saturation adjustments.|
Elsewhere there's little else to get too worked up about; there's a little purple fringing around the boundaries of overexposed areas, the aforementioned focus and exposure errors in the occasional shot and a touch of flare when shooting into the light. It's also obvious that the lens is being seriously pushed to provide a sharp 10MP image, hough unless you're producing poster prints you won't be troubled by the slight edge softness.
With tiny, high pixel count chips noise is always going to be an issue, and to a large degree this is more a test of the effectiveness (both measurable and visible) of a camera's noise reduction system. Designers have to balance the desire to produce smooth, clean results with the need to retain as much detail as possible (if you blur away the noise, you blur away image detail too). The NV10's measured noise is slightly higher at low ISO settings than some of its competitors (the noise reduction seems lighter), and there is mild, but visible noise at ISO 100 and 200 - though it's certainly nothing that you would see in a print. ISO 400 and up are noisy, with strong chroma noise 'blotchiness' despite increasingly aggressive noise reduction. It's worth noting also that the low black noise measurements are more a reflection of Samsung's high contrast processing than its noise reduction or sensor characteristics - (clipping shadows is an excellent way to get rid of noise - and all other shadow detail). We found that in real world shooting the high contrast, high saturation and high noise levels made any shots over ISO 200 look pretty messy, and wouldn't recommend using them unless you really have to.
|ISO 100||ISO 200||ISO 400||ISO 800||ISO 1000|
Low contrast detail
What the crops and graph above don't show is the effect of noise reduction on low contrast fine detail such as hair, fur or foliage. An inevitable side effect of noise removal is that this kind of detail is also blurred or smeared, resulting in a loss of 'texture'. In a new test the crops below show the effect of the noise reduction on such texture (fur) as you move up the ISO range.
|ISO 100||ISO 200||ISO 400|
|ISO 800||ISO 1000||ASR MODE (ISO 200)|
Compared to many cameras the NV10 appears to use a fairly light touch with noise reduction at ISO 100 and 200, meaning you're not losing too much of the low contrast detail and texture that is often sacrificed for a 'smooth' result. By the time you get to ISO 400 the noise reduction has really started to take its toll, and ISO 800 and 100 are noisy and free of detail. I've included the ASR mode just out of interest; the exif says it's ISO 200, but obviously the noise levels are very high. Interestingly the amount of luminance information appears to be roughly the same as the ISO 400 result, but the chroma (color) information is very noisy and has had heavy NR applied.
Indicated ISO sensitivity is on the horizontal axis of this graph, standard deviation of luminosity and red/green/blue channels is on the vertical axis.
|Smile by Olymguy|
from Ultra Asian Indian Female Faces
|Space Shuttle Cockpit- by vbuhay|
from Aircraft Control Stick
New York Times video journalist Ben Solomon spent a harrowing three weeks accompanying Iraqi Major Sajjad al-Hour as he and his men fought to retake Mosul from I.S. forces.
The 3D VR camera launched through a crowdfunding campaign in 2015 goes on sale beginning June 26.
Noctilucent clouds, a crescent moon and Venus were visible in the pre-dawn sky over Budapest yesterday. Photographer György Soponyai captured NASA's astronomy picture of the day.
Squirming pets won't sit still for photos? A Kickstarter campaign is looking to help.
Find out how Chris Burkard shifted from editorial photography to his true passions: landscapes, conservation and, of course, surfing.
The updated EyeEm app scans your camera roll and picks images that are composed particularly well, have the best quality, or highest chance of selling on EyeEm Market.
It's three years old but still a solid option for a Micro Four Thirds shooter looking for a high-quality, fast, wide-angle prime. Take a look at how we got along with it.
Tamron has announced the longest all-in-one zoom lens currently available, the 18-400mm F3.5-6.3 Di II VC HLD. Designed for Canon and Nikon crop-sensor cameras, the lens will be available in July.
When you're ready to step-up to full-frame from an entry-level or midrange camera, the choices can be overwhelming. Find out which models came out on top in our $1200-2000 enthusiast ILC roundup.
Just a guy wearing a VR headset, smashing invisible Goombas in Central Park.
NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter captured this gorgeous aerial photo of the Martian landscape. And if you look really close, you can actually see the Mars Curiosity rover in the very middle.
The city of Laguna Beach, California has provided some clarification around the kinds of photography permits it offers.
Later this year, a VR180 camera will be Joining Yi's Halo and 360 VR cameras, which will offer stereo 3D capture, yet be as easy to use and compact as a 2D camera.
Caltech researchers have developed an 'optical phased array' chip that uses time delays instead of a lens to focus the incoming light.
Pricing and shipping have finally been revealed for two highly anticipated lenses from Sigma, announced in February.
These macro photos of clouds of paint billowing through clear water might look like high-quality CGI, but they're real photographs. And photographer Alberto Seveso told us how they were made.
Facebook is testing a feature that prevents people from saving, sharing, or even taking a screenshot of your profile picture.
We've reshot the Sony a9 in our studio. The short story: it's sharper! The long story... well you can read it all here.
The collection will be officially launched during the Europeana Transcribathon Campus Berlin 2017 crowdsourcing event which will be held on 22 and 23 June at the Berlin State Library.
Light gives us some insight into the preparations for the launch of the pre-order shipments of its much anticipated L16 multi-lens camera.
OnePlus co-founder Carl Pei has confirmed in a tweet that the second lens on the back of the OnePlus 5 uses a 1.6x optical zoom and that digital zoom is used to reach the claimed 2x zoom factor.
Fujifilm recently unveiled the second in its series of affordable cine lenses, the MK50-135mm T2.9. We got our hands on it for a couple days and took it for a spin.
Leica's first attempt at an M-series digital rangefinder was rough around the edges, but set a pattern for all of the cameras that came after it. In this week's Throwback Thursday article, Barney remembers the M8.
No stranger to extreme situations, legendary climber and filmmaker Jimmy Chin talks to Outside Magazine about his career, and the challenge of filming Alex Honnold's rope-free solo climb of El Capitain.
A company backed by Android co-founder Andy Rubin is attempting to make video conferencing less terrible.
Rangefinder magazine asked five professional portrait and wedding photographers about posting on Instagram; no surprise, they got five different answers.
This captivating stop motion film was created by stripping away one layer of wood at a time. It's hard to look away.
It will enable users to simulate the presence of the sun, moon and Milky Way and see how they interact with an area's topography.
Since its introduction in November last year Instagram's live streaming feature has been used by millions, but videos could not be archived for watching at a later stage. A new update has now added the capability.
CopyTrack's study also found that the second most-stolen image is a woman wearing painted jeans. That's apparently a thing.