I’ve been generally impressed by Samsung’s NV (New Vision) series of digital compact cameras. Since the launch of the NV3 and NV10 in 2006 the NV range has been Samsung’s premium compact camera line, combining the latest technology, superior build quality, stylish design and top-quality optics, but at the same time maintaining Samsung’s reputation for good value for money.
The NV range now consists of eleven models, and the second-from-top is this, the NV30, launched along with the L210 and the range-leading 10.1-megapixel NV40 in January this year. The NV30 is an 8.1-megapixel model with a 3x zoom lens, a 2.5-inch 230k monitor and optical image stabilisation.
In terms of specification the NV30 is comparable to a few other current premium models from other manufacturers, such as the Canon IXUS 80 IS, (£150) or the Sony Cyber-shot W80 (£130), and against these models its £115 price tag is excellent value, but in fact most other manufacturers have moved on to longer zoom ranges and wider angle lenses for their premium lines this year, leaving the NV30 with its limited 37-111mm-equivalent zoom range looking a bit like last year’s news.
Like all the NV models the NV30 is striking to look at. The overall style is in keeping with the other models in the range, and is obviously derived from earlier models such as the NV10 and NV15. Physically it is slightly smaller than the NV15, measuring 94.5 x 59 x 18.8 mm, and also significantly lighter at 133g. Like the other models in the series the body is all metal and the build quality is extremely good. The NV30 is available finished in either silver or the semi-matt black seen here. The distinctive shape is similar to previous NV models, but the shape of the handgrip has been altered slightly, making the camera even more comfortable and secure to hold.