Just to clarify a bit about the "camera reviewer" post.

I will most certainly review the Samsung NX1 camera but as an unconnected (from Samsung) blogger/journalist. I didn't feel like I could maintain the appearance of credibility and the inner objectivity to do a fair review if I was part of their program testing, playing with and shooting their new cameras.

Many of you have suggested that I negotiate this or that but the reality is that any quid pro quo connection kind of sours the milk as far as objective reviews go. How would anyone ever trust me to talk about an Olympus camera again if they had me clearly marked out as a Samsung fanboy? :-)

I'm excited to review the NX1 (and have been told that a test unit will be forthcoming) because the camera represents some big technical leaps forward. The sensor is way cool. The processor is supposed to be amazing, all the way down to the copper technology that replaces aluminum for lower heat and higher transfer efficiency inside the sensor (a technical advance I remember hearing about years ago during my assignments with IBM and Motorola). I'm already a big fan of their 85mm 1.4 lens and I'm impressed by their inexpensive (not the f2.0 to f2.8 version) 16-50mm power OIS lens.

By not being part of their shooting program and by not accepting gear I know I'll be able to talk about the things that work and the things I don't like without having to read the cries of "fan boy", "corporate shill", "Canon hater," etc.

One reader asked if perhaps I was flattered to be asked to participate in the first place. I can answer that easily, "Yes." You are never to old or too rich to be pleased when someone seeks you out for your expertise or your opinion. But there's also a time to cut cords and move on.

I am a big proponent of changing careers frequently. I am also a big proponent of changing camera systems regularly. In this case the cycle was complete and I was ready to do something new.

I think the NX1 is going to scare the crap out of Canon and Nikon (and Sony and etc.)  even if it's not a stellar market success. There's just too much good stuff going on under the hood for them not to be a bit shaken. And it's happened very quickly.

Whether Samsung got is all correct is a whole different issue and that's something we'll discuss when we get a sample.

My whole point in the previous post I've referred to is that I work better and think better when I do so without any real, implied or imagined constraint. But most of my VSL readers already know that.....


Anders said...

Well, it may be a nice camera, but I would not want an APS-C sized sensor with more than 28 mega- pixels. Also the retail price of $1500 would scare the s... out of most people.

Anyway I'mlooking forward to "unattached" review.

Anonymous said...

I can't help but thinking that this is much ado about nothing, and you may be giving too much attention to the smallest but the noisiest bunch on the internet. I don't think the more mature majority really mind if you get samples from whichever brand, as long as you're open about it, and better still, keep talking with your own voice.

"How would anyone ever trust me to talk about an Olympus camera again if they had me clearly marked out as a Samsung fanboy? :-)"

Just grow a thicker skin.
Again, I think you're worrying too much about pleasing the 'wrong' audience. You can't please everyone at the same time.

Besides, even if you were somehow tied to, say, Samsung, I bet even they'd appreciate someone who's reviewing the product honestly, even when things aren't as peachy as they could. That'll give them useful feedback and user requests, whereas a un-critical fanboy wouldn't say anything useful in the long run. You wouldn't be the first blogger to do so. If the moguls at Samsung marketing dept are smart enough, they'll know that already.

In other words, as long as they don't gag your mouth, being a part of their program would be okay with most of your readers. After all, your readers already know that you didn't actually buy that NX30 and the Galaxy monster. Ho hum.

"...without having to read the cries of "fan boy", "corporate shill", "Canon hater," etc."

Just get a pair of noise cancelling earphones, something better to read. The crybabies will always cry, whichever gear you talk about. Damn if you praise it, damn if you don't. Why would you let the crying choir of gadget nerds dictate how to run your blog, let alone your business and life?

On the other hand, not being affiliated with anyone is of course simple and straightforward. Just keep in mind that you won't avoid becoming the target of the whiners that way, either. Damn if you do, damn if you don't.
Just be yourself.
You pathetic Nikon-hugger you, hmpfh. ;-)

James Weekes said...

Hey! Nice posts, the last three, but this is the Visual Science Lab. Let's have some visual. Your readership loves your pictures too.

Your reviews are great because you are usually in love with the camera at the time but remain objective, hard to do. Also no charts, numbers or diagrams. I do not understand those but can absolutely grasp how you feel about the camera in user terms. Thanks

Fred said...

I think the biggest benefit of not being a part of the Samsung program is not having to produce those photos for them every week. As you stated in your original post about this issue it ties you down and it's not an equitable trade of their camera and lens for your photos. If you are going to post five free photos on your blog every week they should be the ones you want to post using the equipment that you want to use.
Anyway, what inquiring minds want to know is how the LED testing is going. The quality of light is more important than what camera is being used. (I bet I am preaching to at least one member of the choir :-).

cfw said...

As the saying goes, I guess "nothing is free" after all.


Anthony Bridges said...

Time is precious. If you were camera poor and not a full time professional, this would be a good deal.

C. Kurt Holter said...

"I think the NX1 is going to scare the crap out of Canon and Nikon (and Sony and etc.) even if it's not a stellar market success."

...always nice to see a little humor injected into your posts!

If anybody is potentially scaring the crap out of these companies, it'll be the smartphone manufacturers.

Michael Matthews said...

Sounds like the best decision to me. The amount of work required in return for the camera is way out of balance. Other than that, no one who actually reads your posts would conclude that your reviews are those of a shill. That's just not you.

Rohith Thumati said...

I'm curious why you're "a big proponent of changing camera systems regularly." I know you do, having read the VSL blog for a couple years now, but I don't recall you discussing why you actually do so, other than just wanting to try new stuff (perhaps I missed that post).

Beyond whatever new capabilities that a system has (EVF for composing rather than OVF, better video capabilities, etc.), what do you get out of switching systems?

Anonymous said...

Samsung is using a back illuminated stacked sensor. Sony just announced a similar sensor, but not in a camera yet.

on paper, the back illuminated stacked sensors should have much higher dynamic range and much less noise in comparison to similar sized conventional camera sensors. Only time will tell. Samsung's new camera should give a good idea how this new sensor tech works.

Nikon will just use Sony sensor tech. Canon is the one probably in trouble since they do their own sensors which are getting passsed by the competition.

Michael R