Samsung NX3000 First Shots posted: Time to see just how well this sub-$500 APS-C camera stacks up


posted Thursday, July 31, 2014 at 4:10 PM EDT


The smallest APS-C ILC camera with a mode dial, lightweight and costing less than $500 with a kit lens, the Samsung NX3000 has drawn some attention with the enthusiast photographer crowd looking for a low-cost but capable back-up or competent travel camera. It's also turning heads with some of the smartphone step-up users looking for better quality in a camera that still feels small and, well, "connected".

Not much bigger than the company's diminuitive NX Mini (currently the smallest ILC being sold) the NX3000 has a sensor with roughly 3 times the surface area of the NX Mini, and more than seven times the surface area of premium compacts with 1/1.7" type sensors. Our First Shots from the lab are just the ticket for taking a first glance at just how much difference this can make in the grand scheme of image quality.

If you're ready to dive in and do your own comparisons, head to our Comparometer where you can pit these lab images against any camera we've ever tested. And if you'd like to pull up the lab samples on their own for analysis and pixel peeping, head to our NX3000 First Shots samples page where you'll get access to the full resolution JPEGS, RAW files and EXIF data.

To get you started down the comparison road, below are several obvious match-ups at base ISO as shown 1:1 from our Comparometer. First we'll show the NX3000 as compared to its predecessor the Samsung NX2000, then vs the Samsung NX Mini, the Samsung EX2F to compare to a premium fixed lens compact, and against its closest competition in the APS-C world, the Sony A5000. Lastly we'll pit it against the popular Sony A6000, just for fun.

Samsung NX3000                   base ISO                  Samsung NX2000

Samsung NX3000                   base ISO                  Samsung NX Mini

Samsung NX3000                   base ISO                  Samsung EX2F
Samsung NX3000                 base ISO                   Sony A5000
Samsung NX3000                 base ISO                   Sony A6000

Here at base ISO and using deafult sharpening and in-camera JPEGS, the NX3000 certainly holds an edge over its predecessor and the other Samsung models. The A5000 looks quite similar in many respects, with the apparent difference in sharpening and contrast likely the result of different default in-camera sharpening and JPEG rendering.

The Sony A6000 has roughly 4 more mp resolution, and costs several hundred dollars more, so that's certainly an interesting comparison as well.

For anyone wanting to see more, including how these test images stack up as ISO rises, the Comparometer awaits you. As always, please feel free to leave feedback about what you find in the comments section below.


[quick links: Samsung NX3000Lab SamplesComparometer]

Samsung NX3000                    base ISO                    Sony NEX-3N

Samsung NX3000                 base ISO                   Sony A6000