Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Olympus officially announce OM-D E-M10 and reveals 25mm F1.8, compact 14-42mm, and 9mm F8 Fish-Eye

Olympus unveils the OM-D E-M10, a smaller and budget-friendlier Micro Four Thirds OMD series with many parts borrowed from the E-M5 - starting with its 16 megapixel sensor. It also manages to snag a few features from the flagship E-M1, including its TruePic VII processor and built-in Wi-Fi for image transfer and remote control.

Olympus OM-D E-M10 Key Specification :

  • 16 megapixels
  • Four Thirds (17.3 x 13 mm) CMOS sensor
  • TruePic VII Imaging Processor
  • ISO 200 - 25600
  • 3″ tilting screen with 1,037,000 screen dots
  • 1920 x 1080 (30p), 1280 x 720 (30p), 640 x 480 (30 fps) video recording
  • BLS-5 Li-ion battery
  • 119 x 82 x 46 mm
  • 396 g
  • Price : $699.99 / £529.99 (body only)
  •           $799.99 / £699.99 (with 14-42mm F3.5-5.6 lens

It falls short of its siblings with '3-axis' image stabilization rather than the '5-axis' system in the E-M5 and E-M1, and doesn't provide an accessory port, but these concessions help nudge the E-M10 to an attractive price point. The Olympus OM-D E-M10 will be available in March 2014.

Alongside the OM-D E-M10, Olympus has also announced three lenses. First up is the M.Zuiko Digital 25mm F1.8, a classic 50mm focal length in full frame. The lens will cost $399.

Second is the 9mm F8 Fish-Eye Body Cap Lens (which Olympus technically considers an 'accessory'); this offers a 140° angle of view in a tiny plastic body in the cost of $99.

Finally there's a new 'pancake' kit zoom for the E-M10, the M.Zuiko Digital 14-42mm F3.5-5.6 EZ, which features an electronic zoom. The lens will cost $349.


Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Fujifilm announce X-T1, offers weather-resistant body and improved EVF

The SLR-alike Fujifilm X-T1 is here! We believe the design was heavily inspired by Sony A7/7R and the very successful awards winning camera, Olympus OM-D. It's a weather-resistant, SLR-styled mirrorless camera bearing Fuji's 16MP X-Trans CMOS II sensor, borrowed from its X-E2 sibling. Its built-in 2.36M dot EVF is similar to that of the XE-2, though it boasts a higher 0.77x equivalent magnification and claimed lag time of 0.005 seconds. Also included is built-in Wi-Fi, now with remote capture, and a tilting 3.0-inch LCD.

Fujiflm X-T1 Key Specification :

  • 16 megapixels
  • APS-C (23.6 x 15.6 mm) X-Trans II CMOS sensor
  • EXR Processor II Imaging Processor
  • 3″ tilting screen with 1,040,000 screen dots
  • 1920 x 1080 (30, 60p), 1280 x 720 (30p, 60p) video recording
  • NP-W126 battery
  • 129 x 90 x 47 mm
  • 440 g
  • Price : $1299.95 / £1049.99 / €1199 (body only)
  •           $1699.95 / £1399.99 / €1599 (with XF 18-55mm F2.8-4 OIS lens)

The Fujifilm X-T1 will be available in February 2014.


Monday, January 20, 2014

SonicGear : Pandora 3, Pandora Mini and Pandora Micro Review

Singapore based loudspeaker manufacturer has recently launched the SonicBlue Pandora Series, a series of Bluetooth enabled loudspeakers. They consist of a speaker and two portable speakers of different sizes; Pandora 3, Pandora Mini and Pandora Micro. All of them feature Bluetooth connectivity which allows you to pair them your smartphone for music playback and a built-in mic for handsfree call applications.

 From the left, the Pandora Micro, Pandora 3, and the Pandora Mini.


I’ll start with the Pandora Micro. The Micro is a portable loudspeaker and is the smallest one in the series. It has a built-in rechargeable battery which is quoted to last 5 hours of continuous playback at mid-volume making its operation completely wireless. The Micro has a mini USB port built in it which works as a charging port or as an auxiliary input(AUX-in) with the supplied cables. Charging is done via your PC’s USB port or USB supported power plugs you use for your smartphones. There’s also a micro-SD card slot as an alternative music playback mode.

The Mini is also another portable Bluetooth enabled loudspeaker in the Series. The Mini is larger big brother of the micro. Just like the Micro it also has a built-in rechargeable battery with 1800mah capacity, big enough to double as a portable powerbank for your smartphone or tablet. Charging is also done via a mini USB port. It loses the micro-SD card slot but has a line-in audio jack and a USB port which outputs 1A current to charge your devices.

The Pandora 3 is essentially a Bluetooth enabled 2.1 speakers all built into a relatively small box. It features a Dual Bass Reflector (DBR) which Sonic Gear says produces a 2.2 audio effect. The Pandora 3 is the only non-portable loudspeaker in the series and its relative bulk renders it suitable only for home or desktop usage. The Pandora 3 has an AUX-in jack equipped just like the Mini and also has a built-in mic for handsfree calls.

How do they handle?

Sonic Gear says the Micro it is pocketable but I’m not very convinced about that unless you carry it in your waist -pouch, handbag or maybe the pocket in your jacket. Despite that, it is still very small to be portable nevertheless. The buttons on the Micro are all touch sensitive buttons with a very simple layout consisting of the volume button, forward and back button, and a play button marked with a Bluetooth symbol. The playback mode(Bluetooth or micro-SD mode) can be selected via the On/Off switch behind the Micro. I find the “play-bluetooth” button is pretty confusing especially when you’re in the micro-SD playback mode. It isn’t intuitive and I myself didn’t figure how it plays from the micro-SD until I’ve read the manual. Other than that, it’s pretty straightforward. Connecting your smartphone with the Micro via Bluetooth is very easy and smooth. The touch buttons is sensitive for an easy use but there’s a tendency that you might touch it accidentally. There’s was once where the volume was switched to the maximum without me noticing and gave me a surprise when I played a song.

The Mini is about twice the size of the Micro and has a rectangular appearance rather than a spherical one like the latter. It has physical buttons instead of a touch ones. They have the same exact layout as the Micro with the same confusing “play-bluetooth” button. The on-off switch only does the on-off operation. Instead, to activate Bluetooth, you have to hold onto the “play-bluetooth” button to switch into Bluetooth mode and then press it once more to make it ready to pair before you start to pair it with any devices. Not as straightforward as the Micro definitely, certainly nowhere near intuitive. The mode switches the moment you plug in the audio jack into the Mini and overrides your Bluetooth playback and switches abck to Bluetooth immediately the moment you unplugged it. The USB port output is only 1A so charging your devices especially those with higher battery capacity will be slow but still usable. The 1800mah battery capacity is probably just enough to help your device last just a little longer throughout the day after factoring in some potential losses of energy during the transfer. This is best saved for emergency cases instead of prolonging the use of your device through the day.

Moving on, the Pandora 3 also spots a rectangular form but is much larger compared to the Mini. The use of a power adapter as the power source and the lack of built-in battery clearly rules this box out as a portable audio player. Still, the Pandora 3 is very much smaller than a full sized 2.1 speakers. The 3 has two speaker drivers, a subwoofer driver, and two bass driver reflector built-in, making it a very compact 2.1 system. Such compact and simple speaker makes it ideal home usage as it takes up very little space with the absence of a subwoofer and long messy wires. It is ideal be it as your desktop speakers, room speakers for your music player, or it can even be used as a cheap sound bar solution for your LED TV. The Bluetooth and AUX-in allow such operations with the modes being able to be selected via the on-off button just like the Micro. The buttons are simple and very direct. A big plus point of the Pandora 3 is that you get to adjust the level of the bass you want with a dedicated button for it. The Pandora 3 also comes with the iRez, a fancy name for a cheap plastic holder to place your phone, tablet or mp3 player beside your Pandora 3.


Before I start, I want to clarify that none of these loudspeakers are of audiophile level.
Pandora Micro is able to play really loud sound for such a small equipment. So loud it was at maximum volume, the entire speaker vibrates itself on the table especially when the bass hits. However, loud it may be, the sound starts to break at a few notch before its maximum volume. Sound quality wise, the clarity is acceptable, the bass is impactful but is loose, mids and vocals are okay but the highs is quite harsh when you play it loud. However, one should note that such refinement is not expected from a small equipment of this price point and the general crowd that it pleases. It does its job right when you consider the portability and convenience it brings. It is definitely a big step upwards to, say, your laptop speakers. The handsfree function works well but if you stand about 1 meter away from the speaker, the clarity of your own voice drops a little making it slightly more difficult for the other side to hear.

The Mini is a more refined portable speaker than the Micro but not by a large margins. It carries the same Sonic Gear sound signature but with better clarity, better bass control, smoother mids and vocals, slightly smother and tighter highs but the highs are harsher than the Micro when played near to the maximum volume. The sound still does break when played loud but slightly better than the Micro. Comparing the technical specifications of the Mini and Micro, they seem to suggest that both products share the same drivers but there’s a noticeable performance difference. The size of the overall product might be a factor affecting the sound propagation or they're two totally different drivers with same specs altogether. Considering the RM100 premium over the Micro, the performance difference is expected. With that, you also get a large 1800mah battery capacity to make it a mini power bank as well. The inclusion of AUX-in means that you have the option to plug it directly to your computer. The handsfree performance is pretty similar to the Micro.

Lastly, the Pandora 3, as expected from its size and built, outperforms the Mini and Micro in every department mentioned above in terms of sound quality. It is the most refined of the three. That said, it far from perfect. I feel the mids and highs is being suppressed a little too much which i suspect for the said refinement making the bass and lows overshadowing the mids and highs a little. Tune the bass down too much, it loses the punch from the song. I've also tested the 3 while i was watching The Dark Knight Rises on HBO. It provides a slight improvement over my Sony Bravia W674A's integrated speakers with very decent performance but still is a no match for a sound bar. The handsfree performance is also similar if not very slightly better than the other two.


SonicGear has created a good range of Bluetooth enabled speaker products in the Pandora Series targeted at different range of users. The Pandora 3 can be purchased at a RRP of RM149, which is a pretty good deal considering its compact built, features, performance and flexibility. The Micro comes in second in price at RRP of RM199, which I find to be a little pricey for its performance and features. Finally, Mini goes for RRP of RM299, the most expensive speaker in the Pandora Series. I find the Mini is somewhat pricey as well although the RM100 premium over the Micro is somewhat justified by the increase in performance and features. 

All in all, I think SonicGear did a pretty decent job in introducing the brand new Pandora series. The two portables could be priced slightly lower which would then make them more attractive to consumers. I wish they included the NFC function or maybe the ability to link with other speakers in the Pandora series to play at the same time from the same source. With these, I would've think the price is just right or it can maybe be priced slightly more if the latter function was included. 

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Sony announces Xperia T2 Ultra and Xperia E1

While alot hype and anticipation on Sony Xperia Z1 Compact last week, the company is not missing any opportunity to release two more mid and budget range phones. The first is the Xperia T2 Ultra, a mid-range 6.0-inch phablet designed specifically for Asian and African markets where big screen smartphones are all the rage, and will compete against the likes of the Samsung Galaxy Mega. The Xperia E1 is a budget Android phone with focus on the audio playback aspect. The Xperia T2 Ultra and E1 will be available in two variants, the single SIM T2 Ultra and E1 and the dual-SIM T2 Ultra dual and E1 dual, in black, white and purple.

Sony Xperia T2 Ultra/T2 Ultra dual Key Specification :

  • 6" with 1280x720 resolution display with TRILUMINOS, Mobile BRAVIA Engine 2
  • 1.4GHz Quad Core Qualcomm MSM8928 chipset
  • Adreno 305
  • 1GB RAM
  • 8GB internal memory with microSD slot
  • LTE
  • 13MP back facing camera Exmor RS sensor (Sony’s smart social camera apps will be included)
  • 1.1MP front facing camera
  • 3000mAh
  • Android 4.3 Jelly Bean
  • 165.2 x 83.8 x 7.65mm
  • 172g

Sony has confirmed that the Xperia T2 Ultra will get a number of camera apps at launch including Portrait Retouch (virtual mirror), Collage (drop images into creative photo collages), Background defocus (bokeh), Timeshift burst and Sweep Panorama.

Sony Xperia E1/E1 dual Key Specification :

  • 4" with 480x800 resolution display
  • 1.2GHz Dual Core Qualcomm Snapdragon 200 (MSM8210) chipset
  • Adreno 302
  • 512MB RAM
  • 4GB internal memory with microSD slot
  • 3MP back facing camera
  • 1700mAh
  • Android 4.3 Jelly Bean
  • 118 x 62.4 x 12 mm
  • 120g

Sony claims the loudspeaker on the back of Xperia E1 is capable of hitting 100dB, which should drown out practically every other sound around you. It also has a dedicated Walkman button, shake to shuffle and hardware buttons for controlling audio playback.

The phones is set to launch during Q1 2014 in most global markets including the UK and Europe.


Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Nikon unveils D3300 with new sensor, processor and kit lens

Nikon has released its D3300 entry-level DSLR, which replaces 2012's D3200. The D3300 gets a new 24.2 megapixel CMOS sensor with no optical low-pass filter, as well as an 'Expeed 4' image processor. The camera's ISO range now tops out at 25,600 and continuous shooting has increased to 5 fps. The D3300 can also record 1080/60p Full HD video. A new, collapsible, 18-55mm F3.5-5.6 VR II kit lens has also been announced. The lens is 30% smaller and 20% lighter than the exisiting 18-55, and will be available as part of a D3300 kit or separately.

Nikon D3300 Key Specification :

  • 24 megapixels
  • APS-C (23.2 x 15.4 mm) CMOS sensor
  • Expeed 4 imaging processor
  • ISO 100 - 25600 (with boost)
  • 11 Number of focus points
  • 3″ fixed LCD screen with 921,000 Screen dots
  • 1920 x 1080 (60, 50, 30, 25, 24 fps), 1280 x 720 (60, 50 fps), 640 x 424 (30, 25 fps)
  • EN-EL14a lithium-ion battery
  • 124 x 98 x 76 mm
  • 430 g

The D3300 with the new 18-55mm lens will be available in February at a suggested retail price of $649.95. The lens will be available at the same time and will be priced at $249.95.


Sony introduces 20 megapixel a5000

It is official Sony changing the NEX naming system to Alpha. Sony has taken the wraps off the a5000 (We suspect it is NEX 3N replacement based on the design, buttons and also built in flash) a mirrorless camera that features a 20.1MP APS-C CMOS sensor, Bionz X processor, and built-in Wi-Fi. Sony bills the a5000 as 'the world's lightest interchangeable lens camera' because it weighs 210g (7.4 oz.) without battery, card, or lens.

Sony a5000 Key Specification :

  • 20 megapixels
  • APS-C (23.2 x 15.4 mm) CMOS sensor
  • Bionz X imaging processor
  • ISO 100 - 16000
  • 25 Number of focus points
  • 3″ Tilting LCD with 460,800 screen dots
  • 1920 x 1080 (60i/24p), 1440 x 1080 (25 fps), 640 x 480 (25 fps)
  • NP-FW50 lithium-ion battery
  • 110 x 63 x 36 mm
  • 269 g

Expected to ship in March, the Sony a5000 will include a 16-50mm kit lens for $600, and come in black, silver and white.


Sigma announces 50mm F1.4 DG HSM 'Art' lens

Sigma has announced the 50mm F1.4 DG HSM a fast prime for full frame DSLRs. It will also work on APS-C / DX format cameras, offering a 75mm equivalent short telephoto effect.

It's a completely new lens, rather than a revision of Sigma's existing 50mm F1.4 EX DG HSM, with an unusually complex optical formula for its type (13 elements in 8 groups). It's also rather large, with a strong family resemblance to the excellent 35mm F1.4 DG HSM. The 50mm F1.4 will be available in Canon, Nikon, Sigma and Sony mounts.

The lens employs an ultrasonic-type focusing motor, and according to Sigma uses improved autofocus algorithms. It's also compatible with Sigma's USB dock (allowing the user to update the firmware when required), and Sigma's Mount Conversion service. Pricing and availability are still to be confirmed.


Panasonic launches Leica DG Nocticron 42.5mm F1.2 ASPH

Panasonic has formally announced the Leica DG Nocticron 42.5mm F1.2 ASPH fast portrait prime for Micro Four Thirds. It offers an 85mm equivalent field of view and the brightest aperture of any autofocus lens on the system.

The company says the Power O.I.S stabilization built into the lens is designed to compensate for the low-frequency, high-amplitude movements that can plague low-light photography, as well as the high-frequency, low-amplitude movements that make up regular camera shake.

The lens has gained even more distinctive Leica styling and will be available during the first quarter of 2014 at suggested prices of $1,599/€1,499/£1,299.


Fujifilm unveils XF 56mm F1.2 R portrait lens for X system

Fujifilm has announced the XF 56mm F1.2 R, a fast short telephoto 'portrait' lens for its X system mirrorless cameras. With an angle of view equivalent to an 85mm lens on full frame, it uses an internal focus design for fast, silent autofocus.

The lens has an aperture ring which Fujifilm says has been engineered to give positive click stops, something that hasn't really been the case with previous XF lenses. Like the older XF primes (but unlike the more recent wide angle primes), the focus ring is of the continuously-rotating type with no distance or depth of field scales - although Fujifilm claims it should have improved 'feel'.

The XF 56mm F1.2 R will be available in February, with a suggested retail price of $999.99 / £999.99.


Sony announces miniature flagship Xperia Z1 Compact

Sony has just announced the Xperia Z1 Compact at CES 2014. Unlike most mini flagship variants, it features a specs sheet that doesn't compromise, and has almost identical specs to the Xperia Z1 flagship.

Sony Xperia Z1 Compact Key Specification :

  • 4.3" Triluminous IPS display of 720p resolution
  • 2.2GHz quad-core Krait 400 Qualcomm Snapdragon 800
  • Adreno 330 GPU
  • 20.7 MP back facing camera (1/2.3" sensor, G Lens, optical image stabilization, autofocus, LED flash)
  • 2MP front-facing
  • 16 GB internal memory with microSD slot
  • 2,300 mAh
  • Android 4.3 Jelly Bean (planned upgrade to 4.4 KitKat shortly after launch)
  • 127 x 64.9 x 9.5 mm
  • 137g

On the glance, it has everything that Xperia Z1 has except in smaller size and lower battery power. Pricing and availability still unknown.


Samsung unveils Pro lines of Galaxy Note and Tab tablets

Hold your house, Samsung is not ready to announce Galaxy S5 yet. Today in CES 2014, Samsung unveiled a total of four new tablets from two new lines, the Pro versions of the Galaxy Note and Galaxy Tab tablets. Their sizes range from 8.4" to 12.2", breaking past the current barrier of 10.1" tablets. All four tablets feature flagship specs that are very similar between themselves and the high-end Galaxy Note 10.1 (2014 edition) tablet. Note that these tablets have Wi-Fi only versions along with a 3G/4G version (depending on the chipset). Also, all of them feature Samsung's new faux leather backs.

Samsung Galaxy Note Pro 12.2 Key Specification :

  • 12.2" Super Clear LCD with WQXGA resolution (2,560 x 1,600 pixels)
  • 2.3 GHz Quad-core Krait 400 Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 (LTE)
  • Adreno 330


  • 1.9 GHz Quad-core Cortex-A15 & 1.3 GHz quad-core Cortex-A7 Exynos 5 Octa 5420 (3G)
  • Mali-T628 MP6

  • 3GB RAM
  • 32/64 GB internal memory wity microSD slot
  • 8MP back facing camera with 1080p @ 60fps video capture (30fps for Exynos)
  • 9,500mAh
  • Android 4.4 (KitKat)
  • 295.6 x 204 x 8 mm
  • 753 g

Samsung Galaxy Tab Pro 12.2 Key Specification :

  • 12.2" Super Clear LCD with WQXGA resolution (2,560 x 1,600 pixels)
  • 2.3 GHz Quad-core Krait 400 Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 (LTE)
  • Adreno 330


  • 1.9 GHz Quad-core Cortex-A15 & 1.3 GHz quad-core Cortex-A7 Exynos 5 Octa 5420 (3G)
  • Mali-T628 MP6

  • 3GB RAM
  • 32/64 GB internal memory wity microSD slot
  • 8MP back facing camera with 1080p @ 60fps video capture (30fps for Exynos)
  • 9,500mAh
  • Android 4.4 (KitKat)
  • 295.6 x 204 x 8 mm
  • 740 g

Samsung Galaxy Tab Pro 10.1 Key Specification :

  • 10.1" Super Clear LCD with 2,560 x 1,600 resolution
  • 2.3 GHz Quad-core Krait 400 Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 (LTE)
  • Adreno 330


  • 1.9 GHz Quad-core Cortex-A15 & 1.3 GHz quad-core Cortex-A7 Exynos 5 Octa 5420 (3G)
  • Mali-T628 MP6

  • 2GB RAM
  • 16/32 GB internal memory wity microSD slot
  • 8MP back facing camera with 1080p @ 60fps video capture (30fps for Exynos)
  • 8,220mAh
  • Android 4.4 (KitKat)
  • 243.1 x 171.4 x 7.3 mm
  • 477 g

Samsung Galaxy Tab Pro 8.4 Key Specification :

  • 8.4" Super Clear LCD with 2,560 x 1,600 resolution
  • 2.3 GHz Quad-core Krait 400 Qualcomm Snapdragon 800
  • Adreno 330
  • 2GB RAM
  • 16/32 GB internal memory wity microSD slot
  • 8MP back facing camera with 1080p @ 60fps video capture (30fps for Exynos)
  • 4,800mAh
  • Android 4.4 (KitKat)
  • 219 x 128.5 x 7.2 mm
  • 336 g

The Samsung Galaxy Note Pro and Galaxy Tab Pro tablets will be available globally in the first three months of this year, but the company wasn’t any more specific. There's no mention of price either.


Asus Zenphones unveiled, come in 4, 5 and 6 inches

You got it right! The number 4, 5 and 6 has manifested into a trio of Intel Atom-powered devices with screens of exactly those sizes. They belong to the new Asus Zenfone line and all run Android 4.3 Jelly Bean (updateable to 4.4) with a new interface customization called ZenUI. Also, all three Zefones offer dual-SIM functionality.

Asus Zenfone 4 Key Specification :

  • 4" TFT LED Backlight with 800 x 480 WVGA TN resolution
  • 1.2GHz dual-core Intel Atom Z2520
  • 1GB RAM
  • 5MP Back facing camera
  • 1,170mAh
  • Android 4.3 ( will update to 4.4 KitKat ) with ASUS ZenUI
  • 124.4 x 61.4 x 11.2mm
  • 115g

Asus Zenfone 5 Key Specification :

  • 5" TFT LED Backlight with 1280 x 720 HD IPS resolution (Supports glove & pencil touch input)
  • 2.0GHz dual-core Intel Atom Z2580
  • 1GB RAM
  • 4GB internal memory with microSD slot
  • 8MP (PixelMaster,f/2.0) Back facing camera
  • 2MP front facing camera
  • 2050mAh
  • Android 4.3 ( will update to 4.4 KitKat ) with ASUS ZenUI
  • 148.2 x 72.8 x 10.3mm
  • 140g

Asus Zenfone 6 Key Specification :

  • 6" TFT LED Backlight with 1280 x 720 HD IPS resolution (Supports glove & pencil touch input)
  • 2.0GHz dual-core Intel Atom Z2580
  • 2GB RAM
  • 8/16 GB internal memory with microSD slot
  • 13MP (PixelMaster,f/2.0) Back facing camera
  • 2MP front facing camera
  • 3230mAh
  • Android 4.3 ( will update to 4.4 KitKat ) with ASUS ZenUI
  • 166.9 x 84.3 x 9.9mm
  • 200g

Pricing and availability still unknown.


Huawei Ascend Mate 2 4G goes official

Huawei Ascend Mate 2 4G just goes official at CES 2014. The phablet keeps the 6.1" 720p screen, but updates the chipset with more processing power and faster connectivity.

Huawei Ascend Mate 2 4G Key Specification :

  • 6.1" with 720p resolution
  • 1.6GHz Quad Core Snapdragon processor
  • 2GB RAM
  • 16GB internal memory with microSD cslot
  • 13MP back facing camera (f/2.0, 28mm lens, Sony sensor) with 1080p video recording
  • 5MP front facing camera (f/2.4, 1.4┬Ám pixels - that's UltraPixel size)
  • 4,050mAh
  • Android 4.3 Jelly Bean with Emotion UI 2.0
  • 161 x 84.9 x 9.5 mm
  • 202 g

Pricing and availability still unknown.


Saturday, January 4, 2014

Samsung NX30 adds tilting EVF, improved display, more Wi-Fi features and added two 16-50mm lens

Samsung's just announced the flagship mirrorless camera, in the name of the NX30. It has the same 20 megapixel sensor and Hybrid AF system from the NX300, but has a more traditional SLR-style design. What stands out the most is the camera's XGA electronic viewfinder, which can be pulled away from the camera and tilted upward by 80 degrees. The 3-inch, 1.04 million dot AMOLED display is 70% brighter than the one on the NX20, and is fully articulated.

Samsung NX30 Key Specification :

  • 20 megapixels
  • APS-C (23.5 x 15.7 mm) Sensor
  • DRIMeIV Image processing
  • ISO 100 - 25600
  • 247 focus points
  • 3″ Fully articulated 1,036,000 resolution screen
  • Electronic Viewfinder
  • 1920 x 1080 (60p), 1280 x 720, 640 x 480, 320 x 240 video recording
  • Built-In wireless
  • NFC
  • BP1410 lithium-ion battery
  • 127 x 96 x 58 mm
  • 375 g

Pricing and availability have yet to be announced.

Samsung added two new lenses to its NX mirrorless camera line, one for pros, and another designed to serve as a smaller alternative to the kit lens. Both lenses range from 16-50mm, but the first is a premium design with the 'S' designation, whose bulkier design accommodates an F2.0-F2.8 aperture and optical image stabilization. The second lens is a retractable F3.5-5.6 power zoom with OIS, which the company says offers improved performance over the 18-55mm kit lens.

Samsung says the 16-50mm F2.0-2.8 S ED OIS lens offers greater 'precision, high quality materials and value control'. It has a metal body, includes weather and dust sealing, and uses what Samsung calls an 'ultra precise stepper motor'.

The 16-50mm F3.5-5.6 Power Zoom ED OIS lens, on the other hand, is designed as a portable option whose motorized zoom allows for smoother zooming while shooting video.

Samsung did not announce pricing and availability, only noting that the lenses will be on display at CES 2014.