Samsung GX-10 review: Samsung GX-10

Like the K10D, the GX-10 has a dust-and-weather-sealed 1.8-pound body, with a build quality that's rare for its price class. It also offers the same great set of features, with options you don't often see for less than $1,000: bulb and external-flash sync (at 1/180th sec); a raw-format override button; a preview option that flips up the mirror to display a snapshot of the scene or an optical depth-of-field preview; color temperature presets for white balance; and support for Adobe DNG as its native raw format. (For a more detailed listing of the GX-10's feature, check out the Adobe Acrobat version of the manual.)

Unsurprisingly, the GX-10's performance results look remarkably similar to the K10D's. Its time-to-first shot and typical shutter lag of about half a second come in around the average, and difficulty autofocusing in dim light results in a 1.6 second lag in suboptimal environments. At half a second, JPEG and raw shot-to-shot speed also fall in the middle of the pack, though its 3.1fps continuous shooting clip elevates it a bit above the budget crowd. I also ran into the same occasional focus lock issues--usually during close-ups--where it would rock back and forth quickly for a few iterations, as if trying to decide whether it was satisfied. Most of the time, I fell into a rhythm with it, as you do with any good camera, but occasionally missed a shot waiting for it to catch up.

Although I found the exposures generally a bit too dark, the excellent noise profile--quite good up through ISO 800, and competitive at ISO 1600--provides enough latitude to allow for enhancement in software. The photos are very sharp as well.

However, whether the Samsung GX-10 is a good camera is almost beside the point. It's neither better nor cheaper than its Pentax equivalent, and Pentax has both the photographic history, service experience, and breadth of dSLR lenses and accessories (which will nevertheless work with the GX-10). So why even consider it?

Shooting speed (in seconds)
(Shorter bars indicate better performance)
Shutter lag (dim light)  
Time to first shot  
Shutter lag (typical)  
Canon EOS 30D
0.6 
0.3 
0.4 
Canon EOS Digital Rebel XTi
1.1 
0.3 
0.4 
Sony Alpha DSLR-A100K
1.6 
1.0 
0.4 
Nikon D80
0.9 
0.1 
0.5 
Pentax K10D
1.6 
0.5 
0.5 
Samsung GX-10
1.6 
0.5 
0.5 

Typical continuous-shooting speed
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
In frames per second  

Shot-to-shot time (in seconds)
(Shorter bars indicate better performance)
Raw shot-to-shot time  
Typical shot-to-shot time  
Nikon D80
0.3 
0.3 
Samsung GX-10
0.5 
0.5 
Canon EOS 30D
0.4 
0.5 
Pentax K10D
0.5 
0.5 

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Where to Buy See All

Samsung GX-10 (with 15mm-55mm lens)

Part Number: DIGIMAXGX10 Released: Sep. 21, 2006
MSRP: $799.95 Low Price: $599.99 See all prices

Quick Specifications See All

  • Release date Sep. 21, 2006
  • Digital camera type SLR
  • Optical Zoom 3 x
  • Optical Sensor Type CCD
  • Sensor Resolution 10.2 Megapixel
  • Image Stabilizer optical (image sensor shift mechanism)
  • Optical Sensor Size 15.7 x 23.5mm
About The Author

Lori Grunin is a senior editor for CNET Reviews, covering cameras, camcorders, and related accessories. She's been writing about and reviewing consumer technology and software since 1988.