I love the fact that the EX1 offers an 80 ISO setting – harking back to a time where 1/3 stop difference in film sensitivity meant something. Here, I suspect it is un-noticeable, but clearly classy. A lens cap too. Oh dear, that isn't going to last too long. But again harks back to a simpler time, when lenses were not auto focus, and didn't need 2secs to get ready.
The articulating LCD panel gives good results even in bright sunlight
The EX1 also shoots RAW, but alas, not a RAW format that programs like Adobe’s Lightroom understand. It’s Samsung’s own variant and the company provides its own RAW converter software to allow images to be saved as TIFF or JPEG files. Still, if you are shooting in RAW the supplied software does deliver, provided you have a Windows PC. Mac users would be advised to stick to shooting JPEG files.
When shooting, the controls are in great places – your thumb can operate the wheels on top, your forefinger the shutter wheel on the front. Aperture is the wheel on the back, which is a bit flimsy though. One quick feature is the Fn button, which will get you to the options available in your Mode. Be it white balance, face detection or picture quality. There is a dedicated button on the back for jumping between the metering modes – always good to have that as an option.
Admittedly, I started off using this camera in full auto and wasn't impressed with its operating speed. So much so, that I didn't want to pick it up and take it places. But boy did I need to delve a little deeper. The manual mode alone with this lens is enough to try this camera out.
Forget flash, even though it has a pop-up, you won’t need it. With a little bit of prep time you can get everything perfect. While noise inevitably creeps in the higher you go, the EX1 delivers respectable shots at ISO 800 – it maxes out at ISO 3200 – and if you can't make use of the effective four stops of light you get with the lens, then stop shooting in no light.
Flash is there if you really need it
There are some nice trick effects including fisheye and miniature which are great fun. The other treatments: sketchy, negative and the colour shifts are dreadful. I can't imagine why they are on here. Surely this style of in-camera editing belongs on a phone camera, where you can share images immediately.
Next page: Sample Shots
...can actually get worse the faster a lens is.
I have the Canon 85mm F1.2 II. It is great at F1.2, but the edges of photos are quite dark (when used on a full -frame body). Stop it down to F3 and the vignetting is totally gone.
The size of the objective is one of the critical factors affecting vignetting. It's like having an inappropriately sized lens hood, but very out of focus (as you might imagine for a fast lens).
Fast lenses generally are sharper where telescopic resolving power is needed (which does not apply to this camera). The effects of diffraction (blurring) at the telephoto end for compact hyperzoom (> x20) cameras are testament to that.
For this camera, the limited wideangle/telephoto range and small imager may render vignetting insignificant.
However, vignetting can actually be beneficial...
further to what Ball Boy wrote...
the 'faster' the lens the larger the aperture, i.e. more light getting in, hence faster AF (if it goes through the lens) and shorter shutter times. a larger aperture also means a narrower depth of field, which makes everything that is not focused blurred ('background defocus' as the TV ads say). A smaller aperture means a larger depth of field, which makes everything in the frame sharper. Neither of these is better than the other. It's up to the photographer which he wants to use. Though a narrow depth of field is generally harder to work with.
Hence to get a sharper image on a wider aperture, you're actually relying on the quality of the optics.
Bring back the blue door! And I miss the cathedral.
That's 5.2mm f/1.8 actually. The equivalent aperture on 35mm full frame is f/8.2, and f/5.5 on APS-C. There really is no getting around the laws of physics.