Skip to navigation

Samsung NX100 review


A competent SLD camera with an excellent lens, but disappointing everywhere else

Review Date: 3 Feb 2011

Reviewed By: Jonathan Bray

Price when reviewed: £323 (£387 inc VAT)

Overall Rating
4 stars out of 6

Features & Design
3 stars out of 6

Value for Money
3 stars out of 6

Image Quality
5 stars out of 6

Cameras that hark back to the rangefinder designs of the 1970s are nothing new, but the Samsung NX100 takes things a step further than most. As well as offering SLR-like features in a compact-style body, Samsung adds controls to the kit lens of this 14.6-megapixel camera, which allow you to change ISO, aperture and shutter speed with a twist of the focus ring.

It sounds great on paper, and for a moment or two it’s actually quite fun to use. Hit the iFn button on the barrel, and a menu pops up on the camera’s glorious 3in AMOLED screen; keep pressing the button until you reach the setting you want to change, and spin the focus ring to adjust.

It’s a system that was originally designed for, and worked well with, cameras that had optical viewfinders. Alas, it doesn’t work so well here. When you have to hold the camera out in front of you to see the screen, clawing your hand around the front to reach the lens isn’t very comfortable. Using the controls on the rear of the body doesn’t prove much more responsive or comfortable either.

Samsung NX100

In manual mode, the dial on top of the camera is used to adjust shutter speed, with the spinning d-pad used for aperture, and trying to move quickly between both is an exercise in contortion. Despite having a larger body than our current favourite SLD (single lens direct view) camera, the Sony NEX-3, the NX100 manages to be less comfortable to use.

What’s worse, though, is that the inclusion of the iFN system appears to have come at the expense of optical image stabilisation, and that means flexibility in low light suffers. This is exacerbated by a lack of built-in flash and mediocre low ISO performance. Up to ISO 800 images are clear and finely-detailed.

At ISO 1600, shots are usable but noise is noticeable, with small purple spots scattered beginning to appear across our test images; and we wouldn’t recommend shooting at ISO 3200 or the camera’s maximum of ISO 6400. It isn’t a patch on the Sony NEX-3 or the Sony NEX-5, despite boasting a DSLR-rivalling APS-C sensor.

1 2
Subscribe to PC Pro magazine. We'll give you 3 issues for £1 plus a free gift - click here
User comments

"the 20mm wide angle makes it more flexible than the kit lens that comes with most entry-level DSLRs"

Every other current entry level kit lens starts at 18mm. Did you mean to say less flexible?

By Mark_Thompson on 4 Feb 2011


You are, of course, correct Mark. I must have had my 35mm head on when I wrote that line (showing my age...). Now corrected.

Jonathan Bray,
Reviews editor,
PC Pro.

By JonBray on 4 Feb 2011

Leave a comment

You need to Login or Register to comment.


Latest Digital cameras Reviews
Samsung NX30 review

Samsung NX30

Category: Digital cameras
Rating: 5 out of 6
Price: £899
Canon PowerShot G16 review

Canon PowerShot G16

Category: Digital cameras
Rating: 5 out of 6
Price: £539
Sony Cybershot DSC-QX10 review

Sony Cybershot DSC-QX10

Category: Digital cameras
Rating: 2 out of 6
Price: £180
Pentax K-500 review

Pentax K-500

Category: Digital cameras
Rating: 4 out of 6
Price: £349
Canon EOS 70D review

Canon EOS 70D

Category: Digital cameras
Rating: 5 out of 6
Price: £1,079
Compare reviews: Digital cameras


Most Commented Reviews
Latest News Stories Subscribe to our RSS Feeds
Latest Blog Posts Subscribe to our RSS Feeds
Latest Features
Latest Real World Computing


Sponsored Links


Your email:

Your password:

remember me


Hitwise Top 10 Website 2010

PCPro-Computing in the Real World Printed from

Register to receive our regular email newsletter at

The newsletter contains links to our latest PC news, product reviews, features and how-to guides, plus special offers and competitions.