Samsung has launched its new family of hybrid digital cameras at PMA 2009 in Las Vegas.

The NX series will aim to bridge the gap between camera types and offer the image quality of a DSLR with the portability of a compact.

Like a DSLR, the NX series will offer an APS-C sized image sensor to gather more light for better image quality, but will feature an electronic viewfinder rather than a mirror box to cut down on both size and weight.

It will also offer "Live View" functionality, so users will be able to frame their shots on the NX series' high-res screen.

Probably better known for its compact cameras of recent years, Samsung has said it has recently intensified its focus on the digital imaging market, and is no doubt hoping that this will help raise its profile in the industry.

"We estimate that the hybrid digital camera market will be over 20% of the global digital still camera market by 2012", said Sang-jin Park, CEO of Samsung Digital Imaging Company.

"With the release of the NX Series, a digital camera that combines the strengths of a DSLR and compact digital camera, Samsung Digital Imaging will become a global leader in the new hybrid digital camera market and achieve the company’s goal to become the global leader in the digital camera market by 2012".

There are few other details on models or prices, but we do know that we won't be seeing the first release from the series until the second half of 2009. We'll be sure to keep you updated with any news we get.