My interest in cameras has grown in the past year. I didn’t have a professional camera and I was using my phone to do my reviews, and sharing. I was mostly afraid of the complicated photography uses and terms of knew nothing about, but I still wanted a great camera. I started with a DSLR which made me fall in love with high quality pictures. The camera was great and all but it was huge. Having to carry an extra camera bag wasn’t fun. I already carry and a big enough bag. So in June of 2014 I ditched the DSLR and got into the mirrorless camera category.
Mirrorless cameras are smaller (the majority anyway, since they don’t have the mirror and prism), and some have WiFi connection capabilities that midrange DSLR’s didn’t have yet (when I was making the switch). That was the feature that sold me. I have a Samsung NX30. That camera is awesome. The automatic settings allow me to take great pictures without taking a photography course. I enjoy using the Samsung NX30 so much that I looked into their other cameras. I was intrigued by the NXMini. The NX Mini is a small digital camera with interchangeable lens. I’ve had it for a few weeks, check out what I thought about the Samsung NX Mini.
The 20 megapixel NX Mini looks like a point and shoot camera for the most part. The small body can fit in most pockets if not for the lens. I have the flat lens which keeps the NX Mini small regardless. It’s available in 5 colors (black, white, mint green, pink, and brown). I was sent the black version. The 3 inch LCD touch screen in the back allows you to reach the settings easily. The screen flips up allowing you to take high quality selfies. the bad thing (for me at least) is that it leaves the screen out, making it susceptible to scratches and dings.
The top part of the camera has 3 buttons. The “Direct Link” button which starts the WiFi sharing, the power button and the shutter button (the biggest button). There’s also a port to connect an external flash (with an attached cover). The front of the camera is simple. You have the built-in flash, the NFC tag, and the lens.
On the back of the camera, next to the screen you have the “record video” button. Under the “record video” button, you have the menu, and mode buttons. Those are followed by directional buttons which of course have multiple uses, such as dispaly, timer settings, auto focus settings, “OK”. And finally at the bottom you have the “review” and “Trash / delete” buttons. It’s a very clean setup and while you can use the buttons to navigate, some may find the screen easiest to use.
To the right side of the buttons you have the battery, microSD card slot, HDMI mini port and microUSB port. Overall a simple and clean setup.
If you’ve read any of my smartphone reviews you know that I am not a professional photographer. This camera is great for those who want to try to learn about some of the things professional cameras can do without getting overwhelmed. I had to do a bit of research to get the hang of a few things, but these are some of the features I love about the NX Mini:
WiFi Sharing / Auto Share:
This is one of the biggest selling points for me. The ability to share pictures to your smartphone via NFC / WiFi direct is a great feature, especially on this camera. The flip-up screen is great for group photos at fun events, or selfies in special places. These are the types of pics that you’d like to share in the moment on social media or with the friends you’re with at the time. The Samsung Mobile Link It’s nice to be able to share almost instantly, and it’s even better that you don’t need a Wifi connection to get that job done.
Flip Up Touch Screen:
I admit that I love the selfie. Being able to take pictures of me (and/or the friends I am with) at awesome spots enjoying a good time, is a fun. Usually smartphone front-facing cameras are terrible or don’t have enough width to fit everyone in the picture (although some smartphones are working on that). The flip up screen allows you to clearly see who is in the picture and it’s wide enough for a great group pic. You can see some group pics and selfies below:
Shooting around with the NX Mini was pretty fun. Since there is no electronic viewfinder, using the screen in bright sunlight can be difficult at times. Not cool since bright sunlight makes the best lighting (especially for selfies). The 9mm pancake lens is great for macro shots, but that’s pretty much it. You don’t get too much detail in landscape shots, and the colors aren’t always great in landscape shots either.
Smile Shot / Wink Shot
When taking a selfie that’s difficult to pose for, you don’t want to mess it up when you have to press the shutter button. Timers are great use in this case, but another great idea is the Smile shot and wink shot. When in those modes, all you have to do is smile or wink and the NX Mini takes the picture. Pretty cool.
The 2,330 mah battery on the NX Mini did pretty well.On separate days of testing I could take a few hundred pictures before the camera died on me. The battery charges inside the camera while connected via microUSB (yay). You know that I keep my battery packs around.
Pricing and Availability
There are different bundles you can buy for the NX Mini. The lowest I’ve seen it with the 9mm lens is $269.99, which is a lot lower than when it first came out at $449.99
You can learn more and buy it from samsung.com or Amazon.com
The Samsung NX Mini is an excellent everyday shooter. Great for informal gatherings and good times. For more professional occasions I say upgrade to the Samsung NX30. I honestly just love that I can throw the NX Mini in my bag and it’s ready to use right away. In the occasion that the battery is dead, you can charge it with one of your phone cables. Sharing pics is quick and painless. The NX Mini is now at an affordable price range as well. The lenses used on other NX cameras won’t fit on the NX Mini, so you would need to buy a special lens adapter for that. I suggest getting the zoom lens versus the 9mm just for the option of zooming in.