Skip to main content

Samsung announces pricing and availability for new NX30, Galaxy Camera 2

Check out our in-depth Samsung NX30 review and Samsung Galaxy Camera 2 review.

Update on February 20, 2014: Samsung has announced pricing and availability for both cameras. The NX30 goes on sale today for $1,000, while the Galaxy Camera 2 will be available in mid-March for $450.

If you’re familiar with Samsung’s cameras, you know the company’s offerings set themselves apart from the competition more for their wireless abilities and other sharing-focused features than for class-leading imaging quality (although they are improving on that front). That’s not at all surprising, given the company has a much bigger slice of the Android smartphone and Smart HDTV markets than it traditionally has had in imaging.

If the company’s latest cameras are any indication, Samsung seems to be doubling down on features and hardware tweaks, rather than adding megapixels or drastically changing the internal imaging hardware or adding on extra megapixels.

We spent time at a press event prior to CES with the NX30, the successor to the NX20, and the Android-powered Galaxy Camera 2. Both have their share of new features and important tweaks. But if you were expecting majorly different imaging innards, you may want to look elsewhere.

NX30: Lots of little improvements make for a much better camera

The NX30 has a 20.3-megapixel APS-C sensor, just like the previous-generation NX20, but the new model does throw hybrid autofocus in the mix. The NX30 also ups the internal electronic viewfinder to a higher resolution (XGA versus SVGA in the NX20). And the viewfinder’s eyepiece now extends and tilts so you can use it at different angles.

The NX20’s 3-inch swiveling touchscreen also gets a bump up to a Super AMOLED display with a higher resolution (720 x 480), as well as a maximum brightness of 500 nits, which should go a long way toward making it useable in direct sunlight.

Imaging additions include the ability to set the ISO has high as 25,600 (twice that of the NX20), and the camera can now record 1080p video at 60fps. The new video abilities pair well with the addition of a 3.5-inch mic port.

Last up on the major hardware feature additions here is the addition of dual-band Wi-Fi, which can make a big difference in both the strength and speed of the Wi-Fi signal for sharing or offloading photos. And an NFC chip has been incorporated as well, for easy pairing and sharing with smartphones and tablets.

On the software front, Samsung says the NX20 will ship with a full copy of Adobe Lightroom 5 (a $150 program if you buy direct from Adobe without a student discount). And both the NX30 and the Galaxy Camera 2 have the company’s Smart 3.0 sharing-centric software suite that uses NFC and Samsung’s WiFi Direct to push photos to individuals or a group of friends.

Galaxy Camera 2: lighter, with a bigger battery, improved performance, and better sharing features

The Android-packing Galaxy Camera – the smart camera that launched this category for Samsung – is also getting a significant upgrade with the Galaxy Camera 2. Like the NX30, though, the updates have less to do with better images than they do with, well, just about everything else.

For starters, the Galaxy Camera 2 weighs 260 grams to the original’s 303 grams, while packing a 2,000mAh battery that’s a decent step up from the 1,650mAh battery in the original.

If you thought the original model felt a bit sluggish when running Android apps, the sequel should go a fair way toward fixing that, with twice the RAM (2GB) and a quad-core processor that’s clocked at a higher 1.6GHz. There’s also a newer (though not the newest) flavor of Android on board, in the form of Jellybean (4.3).

Image used with permission by copyright holder

Samsung says the camera’s rear display is the same as the original model’s, as is the camera’s sensor, optics, and zoom abilities. The company did say they expect images to be better thanks to software improvements. But we’ll have to wait until final units are ready before making that judgment. The cameras Samsung had at the event weren’t final, and so we weren’t able to take pictures with these cameras.

When using the Galaxy Camera 2, though, we did notice that there was some lag when jumping from the Home screen to the camera app. But again, this was a pre-production unit, so that may be fixed in the final version.

While the imaging hardware hasn’t changed, Samsung has added the ability to shoot 120-frames-per-second slow-motion video. There are a lot of smart mode presets in the camera app as well (28, to be exact). And the camera now lets you tap the screen once to focus, then again elsewhere to set the exposure. That has the potential to be a handy feature that could result in better photos. But we’re not sure if point-and-shoot customers who mostly rely on preset settings (Samsung said the smart modes were extremely popular, and customers asked for more) are the type to typically think about and adjust both focus and exposure before taking a photo.

Of course, the ability to share your photos is emphasized here even more so than with the NX30. The Galaxy Camera 2 now also has an NFC chip, and the Smart 3.0 feature set for doing things like tapping to share with your phone or tablet, direct sharing to multiple devices via WiFi Direct, etc.. You can also pair your Samsung phone with the camera to control settings, take shots, and mirror the viewfinder. There’s even a baby monitor mode that lets you set up the camera and see and hear events in another room from your smartphone.


Both the NX30 and Galaxy Camera 2 seem like solid upgrades from a feature standpoint, especially if you like the idea of being able to instantly share your photos with friends and family at a party or, say, a wedding. Also, both cameras felt lighter in the hand than we expected before picking them up.

We’ll of course have to reserve final judgment until we can get a better sense of important things like image quality and battery life. But as much as the new features and upgraded specs sound good, two of the primary improvements we generally look for when considering a camera upgrade are majorly improved image sensors and/or a significantly smaller footprint.

Neither of these devices seems to deliver on that front. The Galaxy Camera 2 is indeed lighter, but it still feels bulkier than it needs to be for a point-and-shoot. And as for the NX30, if anything, it looks to be slightly larger than the NX20, although much of the extra bulk seems to be in a larger handle bump, which may lead to a better grip; it may not be worth trading up if you’re already an NX20 owner.

(This article was originally published on January 2, 2014.)

Matt Safford
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Matt Safford began accumulating electronics experience as a child with his Mattel Aquarius and Tandy TRS-80 (Model 4)…
Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra vs Huawei P40 Pro: Which is the king of zoom?
samsung galaxy s20 ultra vs huawei p40 pro camera zoom comparison

There was a time when the zoom feature on your smartphone’s camera would never be used, because the quality was mostly awful. This has changed over the past year or so, as optical and hybrid zooms have become a must-have feature, complementing wide-angle sensors to create a versatile and compelling camera system in your pocket.

Huawei has led the way in phone camera zoom technology since the introduction of the P30 Pro, with its astonishing 10x hybrid zoom and 50x digital zoom, but the competition is quickly catching up. Samsung recently went all-in on the zoom feature with the Galaxy S20 Ultra, which is capable of taking photos at up to 100x zoom.

Read more
The ultimate guide to the Galaxy S20 Ultra’s feature-packed camera
Galaxy S20 Ultra Camera Bump Back

The Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra has one of the most capable camera systems we’ve seen yet, and if you’ve just bought the phone, you’re going to want to learn how to get the best from it. After extensive time with the Galaxy S20 Ultra, snapping away happily, we're pleased to bring you the most comprehensive guide on how to do exactly that.

If you own the Galaxy S20 or S20 Plus, many of the tips apply to those two phones as well, provided you know the differences between all the new phones. To find out, we've got a guide on the differences between the S20 and S20 Plus, and the S20 Plus and S20 Ultra.
Turn on these Galaxy S20 Ultra camera options
Before you do anything at all, head over to the Settings menu and make sure the following options are both active. They will make the experience a lot better. The Settings menu is found under the cog icon in the top left of the screen when you open the camera app on the S20 Ultra.

Read more
How to use Samsung’s Single Take camera mode on the Galaxy S20 Ultra
samsung galaxy s20 ultra camera guide single take

Smartphone cameras are packed full of features today, but not all of them are things we’d use on a regular basis. Samsung’s new Single Take mode found on its Galaxy S20 Ultra, S20 Plus, and S20 phones is the kind of camera feature we really like because it’s fun, useful, requires very little effort to use, and is something we predict many will use often. That is, provided you know exactly how to get the best from it.

What exactly is Single Take? It is made to ensure you never fumble around choosing which camera mode to use at a particular moment again. Let’s say your dog is going crazy chasing a ball. Do you want a video or a few stills? Make the decision quickly, as the craziness may not last long enough to get both. This is where Single Take comes in, as it takes video, shoots stills, and even makes fun little GIF-style video clips from that moment, all in one go, all from a single press of a button.

Read more