Two new Samsung NX 16-50mm zooms, bounce flash


posted Thursday, January 2, 2014 at 4:57 PM EDT


Alongside its announcement of the Samsung NX30 and Galaxy Camera 2 today, Samsung had three more products to reveal, and they're largely aimed at users of its NX-mount cameras -- but with distinctly different usage. There are two lenses and a shoe-mount strobe, and interestingly, the duo of new lenses both cover the exact same focal length range. One does so with a lightweight, consumer-oriented design, while the other sports enthusiast / pro-friendly build and maximum apertures.

The more exciting of the pair of lenses -- for us camera geeks here at Imaging Resource, anyway -- is the Samsung 16-50mm F2-2.8 S ED OIS, a bright, stabilized zoom which covers roughly 24-75mm focal lengths on an APS-C crop sensor. It marks the start of what Samsung is calling the Premium "S" Series, and the company says it is the brightest 3x zoom in its class. It's also splash and dustproof, and features an Ultra Precise Stepping Motor, said to have three times greater precision than Samsung's standard Stepping Motor design. The lens' optical formula includes two extreme high refractive elements, two extra-low dispersion elements, and three asperics. And it's a solid piece of kit, as well, weighing in at 21.9 ounces (622g), with dimensions of 3.2 inches (81mm) diameter and 3.8 inches (97mm) in length.

Samsung's duo of 16-50mm lenses for pros and consumers, shown approximately to scale.

For consumers, though, the Samsung 16-50mm F3.5-5.6 Power Zoom ED OIS lens is going to have a more agreeable pricetag, and weigh less to boot. It may also prove more interesting to videographers, given its power zoom function complete with easy-access rocker button. (It's tough shooting handheld and adjusting a zoom ring without shaking the camera!) The consumer 16-50mm zoom is obviously quite a bit less bright, but it weighs only 3.9 ounces (111g), and that's including optical image stabilization. That's to say you could carry five of these together, and they'd still weigh less than the one pro version. Barrel diameter is 2.6 inches (65mm) and length is just 1.2 inches (31mm). And again, intriguingly for video fans, it is said to have silent autofocus and low zooming noise. You can also look forward to two barrel colors to match your camera body: black or white.

The flash strobe, meanwhile, is the Samsung SEF 580A, and it boasts a guide number of 58 meters at ISO 100 and 105mm focal length, 24-105mm coverage, and a high-speed sync mode capable of up to 1/200 second. Other features include a tilt / swivel bounce head, A-TTL exposure control support, moderling light function, a graphic LCD display, and four-channel, three-group wireless connectivity.

Pricing and availability for all of these new products has not yet been disclosed.