A decidedly average compact camera
- Multimedia capability, good colour balance
- Lens could have been wider, small screen, confusing controls
The NV4 is a camera that is average at all tasks, whether it’s photography, video recording or multimedia playback. It’s stylish and simple, so if these factors are important then it could be the camera for you.
Price$ 429.00 (AUD)
Samsung's NV4 is the company's attempt at an entry-level multimedia convergence device. It has a slim form factor and takes decent quality photos, but it's let down by a small screen, strange controls and an inferior lens.
The camera comes in a variety of colours (always important for the fashion-conscious), shown off thanks to a minimalist fascia. The camera's small lens and xenon flash are crammed into the top-right corner, with the rest of the body left blank. The lens is protected by a thin cover that disappears when the camera is turned on. We were able to move this cover when the camera was off — possibly exposing the lens to scratching and damage. It's not likely that this will happen with the camera in a pocket or carry case, however.
The NV4 touts itself as a multimedia camera in the same vein as the i85 and NV24HD, with the ability to play back movies and MP3s, display text documents and access Samsung's World Tour Guide program for travel planning. If you're desperate to have access to all of these features inside a single device, the NV4 might be worth considering. If you're not so desperate, perhaps your needs might be better met by multiple products — the NV4's screen is slightly smaller than average at 2.5 inches and the control scheme is slightly too complicated and unfriendly.
The NV4 sports the same 8.2-megapixel image size as the i85, but with a different lens. A 3x optical zoom is offered, with a 35mm equivalent of 38-114mm. While this is a decent zoom length, we're disappointed that it's not wider — you might have to stand back slightly if you intend on taking group shots. This isn't a telescoping lens like a traditional camera: at all times it remains completely within the body of the camera. The trade-off for this miniaturisation is lower quality materials — there's a reason why SLR cameras have such large lenses!
This combination of average sensor and average lens culminates in (oddly enough) average photographs. Pictures are decently sharp, but image noise and blurriness is evident upon close inspection.
Running a series of photos through the Imatest photograph testing software, we were able to establish how the camera fared against its peers. The tests showed a small amount of under-sharpening, with the camera biased towards soft, film-like pictures on its default settings. Chromatic aberration levels were extremely low, with Imatest reporting little to no haloing in areas of high contrast.
The NV4 fared reasonably in our image noise trials as well. Low ISO settings performed predictably well, with ISO 100 and 200 free of any interpolation or image noise. ISO 400 saw the camera start to lose significant amounts of sharpness, and images at ISO 800 were noticeably smooth, with depth and detail erased.
Unlike some of Samsung's other offerings, the NV4 had a reasonable colour balance at its default settings. Plenty of options other than automatic are available, including novelties like the Forest colour setting. Reds are especially good in the default setting, with blues and greens slightly less pronounced. Overall, colours were slightly washed out and pale, although switching to the Vivid picture mode over-compensated for this and led to a slight loss of fine colour detail. These problems were only minor, however, and wouldn't matter significantly to a casual photographer.
Start-up time is a decent 1.6 seconds, and shutter lag levels are fairly average at 0.12 seconds. Continuous shot performance was acceptable, with almost 3 seconds in between snaps when the camera was in single shot mode. Switching to the continuous shot mode improved this dramatically with shots only taking 1.3 seconds on average. However, the screen is unable to keep up with the buffer in this mode — only the first image captured is displayed, and then the screen goes blank.
Digital image stabilisation is available within the camera's menus, as well as various scene modes and 800x592 pixel video recording. The video mode was decent, but not comparable to a dedicated video camera due to occasional artefacts.
All in all, Samsung's NV4 is a solid performer: It handles all tasks without fuss, while the inclusion of multimedia support might make it a good choice for a traveller.
Join the newsletter!
Samsung QLED 8K TV
Apple iMac Pro
Cartier Calibre de Cartier Diver Watch
Bang and Olufsen Beoplay A9 Speaker
Ballistix Sport AT
Ballistix Tactical Tracer RGB 3000
Toys for Boys
Oregon Pro WMR500 Weather Station
Tivoli PAL BT
ESET Internet Security
ESET Smart Security Premium
Little Bits DROID Inventor Kit
ESET Cyber Security Pro for Mac
Nix Pro Colour Sensor
Osmo Coding Awbie Game
Naztech Xtra Drive Mini + 256GB microSD Card
SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3
TimeFlip Magnet Simple Time Tracking Device
Ikea RIGGAD work lamp with wireless charging
Ultimate Ears Wonderboom Bluetooth Speaker
Apart from offering a wide range of services and competitive pricing, ISPs must offer quality technical and customer support, and bill clarity.
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Samsung Tab S4 review: Freestyle
- 2 Sony WF-SP900 review: One step forward, two steps back
- 3 Plantronics BackBeat Fit 3100 review: Safety first
- 4 Oppo R17 Pro review: Oppo's thriftiest flagship yet drives a hard bargain
- 5 Lenovo Smart Display review: The bigger, better buy
Latest News Articles
- CES 2019: Arlo expand into the smart home, confirm Arlo Ultra pricing
- DJI launches Osmo Pocket stabilised camera
- PAX AUS 2018: Alienware isn't looking to sell a gaming smartphone just yet
- Fujifilm launches Cashback promotion of up to $1,000
- Fujifilm unveils latest Rangefinder style GFX 50R
PCW Evaluation Team
Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications
I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)
It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!
The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.
I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.
If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.
- CES 2019 Round-Up:
- Samsung’s Galaxy S10 will launch on Feb 20, and we only have one question
- Huawei Mate 20 Pro review: Full, in-depth, Australian review
- Everything you need to know about Smart TVs
- What's the difference between an Intel Core i3, i5 and i7?
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?