Samsung NX200 20.3MP ILC Camera - Movie Mode and Final Thoughts

Article Index
Samsung NX200 20.3MP ILC Camera
NX200 Specifications
Design and Size Comparison
Handling, Construction and More
Menu Options and Settings
Physical and Software Controls
Focus, White Balance, Burst and More
Image Quality and Noise - JPEG
Image Quality and Noise - RAW
Dynamic Range and Image Stabilization
Movie Mode and Final Thoughts

 

Movie Mode:

Movies are where the new generation of mirror-less, large sensor cameras differentiate themselves. While my D300s and D90 take great video, it is also very frustrating due to a lack of auto focus.  Auto focus is essential.  That's why there are no video cameras available for retail with only manual focus.

The NX200 is able to capture 1080p video at 30fps for up to 25 minutes.  This is pretty good considering that most of the other cameras in its class are only able to run for ~10 minutes. It also uses the H.264 codec instead of the older motion jpeg.  This should lead to better quality and smaller file sizes.

I found the movie mode on the NX200 to be quite easy to use and you can specify if you want to focus at the partial press of a shutter button or have the camera continually focus for you.  Focus is not as fast and as precise as it could be, but it still shoots great video.  Below I've included a few clips - including a 480p clip at 0.25x, a 1080p clip at normal speed and finally another clip at 20x.


 


Sample Gallery

 

 

Conclusion:

A couple of years ago, I never would have recommended a Samsung camera to a person who was serious about photography, but things have changed.  The NX200 is proof that Samsung is getting serious about photography and they have really stepped up their game with the NX200.  This camera body is not much bigger than a compact non-interchangeable lens camera (body only) and with a pancake lens, it could easily fit in your pocket, bag or backpack.  The large 20.3MP APS-C sized CMOS sensor is capable of capturing some pretty decent pictures at base ISOs while at the same time showing a very acceptable noise level at higher ISOs.  The mirror-less setup also gives it a lot more flexibility than your average DSLR when it comes to movie recording.

A few things do keep this camera out of "perfect" territory though.

  1. The amount extra information recoverable from RAW files seems fairly limited.
  2. RAW write performance is very slow.  Granted, these are large files, but with a Sandisk Extreme (45MB/s) card in the camera, I expected less wait time while the RAW buffer clears.

 

Is this camera going to replace my D90?  Quite possibly.  Would I use the NX200 as a walk-around camera?  Absolutely.  Samsung has trimmed down this camera a lot since the NX10 days.  Would I recommend the NX200 to someone considering an entry level DSLR.  Yes. I think the mirror-less cameras are going to chew out a significant hole at the bottom of the DSLR lineup.  With contrast detect AF getting faster and better, smaller sizes and comparable image quality, there is a lot to like about these cameras. The NX200 is a good example of a good product produced at the right time.  It shows that Samsung is taking this level of photography seriously and wants to compete.

Pros:

  • APS-C large sized sensor
  • Good auto focus and manual focus
  • Very good noise reduction for a 20MP sensor
  • Great resolution from the JPEG engine
  • Good OIS
  • Great feature set including, filters, frames, panorama and more.
  • Auto exposure bracketing option available
  • Auto white balance bracketing option
  • Excellent Build quality (metal body!)
  • Lots of video options including filters, effects, etc.
  • Growing selection of lenses

 

Cons:

  • No built-in flash
  • Face detection not the greatest
  • Clips to white fairly quickly, detail not recoverable in RAW
  • Uses a Samsung proprietary NX lens mount
  • No connector for external microphone
  • No external viewfinder option
  • Included Kit lens 18-55 f3.5-f5.6 feels "gritty" and sluggish to zoom

 

BCCRating

Silver

I'd like to thank Samsung for lending us the NX200 for us to review.  If you are looking for an entry-level DSLR that can shoot and focus video on-the-fly, this camera is one of the few decent choices.  Please post your thoughts and comments regarding this review in the forum at the "Comments" link below.

Please check out the Sample Gallery here for some action shots from the NX200.