Samsung rolls out NX Hybrid, a small camera with a big digital sensor

Samsung further blurs the line between the digital SLR and the point-and-shoot with this sharp NX Series Hybrid announced today. The big deal here is the big sensor inside, the size usually found in a digital SLR, but shoehorned into this compact package that Samsung says has 60% the bulk of a clunky DSLR.

We like the idea of a larger sensor, which is even more important than the number of megapixels, and a key to better low-light photography. What's the catch? You'll sacrifice that through-the-lens viewfinder of a DSLR, but the NX has a viewscreen called "ultra-precise," so maybe it'll be just good enough.

Pumped? Hold those horses, because this is a tease — Samsung won't be shipping the NX Series until the "second half of this year," a vague target that could mean July, could mean December. And, wait, there's more — the company says this is but the first model in the NX series, with more coolness on the way. Clink on Continue below the gallery for Samsung's press release:



SAMSUNG'S NX SERIES, HYBRID DIGITAL CAMERAS MAKE GLOBAL DEBUT AT PMA 2009

NX Series Offers APS-C Image Sensor, Bridges Gap Between Compact Digital Cameras and DSLRs

SEOUL, KOREA - March 2, 2009 - Samsung Digital Imaging Co., Ltd. used PMA 2009 as the global launching pad for the NX Series, the company's revolutionary new family of hybrid digital cameras. A new concept digital camera, the NX Series offers the performance and image quality of a DSLR and the portability and convenience of a compact point-and-shoot. With the NX Series, Samsung will become a global leader in the new hybrid market.

Samsung's new NX Series bridges the gap between a DSLR and compact point-and-shoot digital camera by combining the benefits of both in one new model. Like conventional DSLRs, the NX Series utilizes an APS C sized image sensor providing a much larger surface area to gather light and produce higher-quality images than comparable digital camera systems. Unlike a DSLR, the NX Series does not feature a mirror box and employs an ultra-precise Electronic Viewfinder (EVF). The use of an EVF has allowed Samsung engineers to significantly reduce the size and weight of the new camera system by decreasing the distance between the lens and image sensor (flange back) by approximately 60% compared to traditional DSLRs. In addition to utilizing the EVF, consumers can also take advantage of the camera's Live View functionality to frame their shots on the NX Series' high resolution screen.

Samsung has recently intensified its focus on the digital imaging market and established a separate company dedicated exclusively to digital imaging in Samsung Digital Imaging Company. The new company was formed to focus on the development of its digital still cameras around world's first and best in class features, design, and easy-to-use interfaces, and will work towards achieving the company's stated goal of becoming the world's leading digital imaging company.

"We estimate that the hybrid digital camera market will be over 20% of the global digital still camera market by 2012," said Sang-jin Park, CEO of Samsung Digital Imaging Company. "With the release of the NX Series, a digital camera that combines the strengths of a DSLR and compact digital camera, Samsung Digital Imaging will become a global leader in the new hybrid digital camera market and achieve the company's goal to become the global leader in the digital camera market by 2012."

Samsung Digital Imaging Company also creates a much more efficient vertical alignment between related Samsung affiliate business units including semiconductor, LCD panel and consumer electronics. This new vertical alignment will create competitive advantages for Samsung by fostering greater collaboration between Samsung affiliate business units and allowing the company to develop and deliver highly-innovative digital imaging products that set the standard for the industry, including the newly unveiled NX Series.

The first model of NX Series will be available in the second-half of 2009.

About Samsung Digital Imaging
Samsung Digital Imaging Co. Ltd. is a leader in photo imaging technology, digital cameras and optical devices. The company offers a range of high-performance digital compact and DSLR cameras, introducing cutting-edge features to meet consumer needs. Samsung began developing film cameras in 1979 and has led the growth of the digital imaging market through its advanced technology and innovation. For more information, please visit www.samsungcamera.com.