Compared to... Casio EX Z1000

We compared the NV10 to the Casio EX-Z1000 (the most obvious direct competitor) a couple of weeks ago. Since then we've discovered that the camera we used then had a faulty lens, so the comparison shots were retaken. We have included comparisons at each camera's lowest ISO setting (Casio: ISO 50, Samsung: ISO 100) and at ISO 400; the highest ISO setting you can set manually on the Z1000. For the NV10's high ISO settings see later in the review.

Studio scene comparison (Samsung NV10 @ ISO 100, Casio Z1000 @ ISO 50)  

  • Samsung NV 10: Manual mode, ISO 100, Default Image Parameters,
    Manual white balance, +0.7 EV compensation.
  • Casio Exilim EX-Z1000: Program mode, ISO 50, Default Image Parameters,
    Manual white balance, +0.7 EV compensation.
  • Lighting: Daylight simulation, >98% CRI
Samsung NV10
Casio EX-Z1000
ISO 100, 1/200 sec, F3.8
ISO 50, 1/100 sec, F3.8
4,675 KB JPEG
4,067 KB JPEG

What's obvious is that the two cameras are capturing a very similar level of detail (though the NV10 sharpness drops off much more at the edges), and that each suffers from slightly different processing-related problems. The Casio image has had stronger noise reduction applied (so it looks smoother), but also slightly stronger in-camera sharpening, producing an image that looks a touch over-processed. The Samsung image is a bit on the soft side and is both over-saturated and over-contrasty. This is no doubt designed to produce 'poppy' prints straight out of the camera, but given the lack of any in-camera control over these parameters it is, in our opinion, totally over done. The lens is obviously struggling to meet the demands of the 10MP sensor, more and more so as you move away from the center of the frame, but unless you intend to produce huge prints you're unlikely to see it. The 'turn everything to 10' color and contrast is, however, something that will impact on every single picture you take, and I would strongly urge Samsung to consider a firmware upgrade to offer control over the settings, or to just turn it all down a little!