PENTAX has just announced the newest member of its RZ zoom series, the 16 megapixel Optio RZ18. Let's begin by talking about the lens. In 35mm terms, this 18x optical zoom lens is the equivalent of a 25 - 450mm lens. If that's not quite enough, there is an enhanced digital zoom which extends that range up to a 3250mm super-telephoto. In addition to huge zooming, the RZ18 is a capable of super-macro photography thanks to its 4cm focal length. PENTAX has included multiple sensor-shift Share Reduction (SR) mechanism as well as Pixel Track SR to reduce blur and camera shake when the camera is at full zoom.
The RZ18 is designed with the novice in mind. Auto Picture mode selects from one of 16 shooting modes to best fit your shooting situation, as well as optimizing ISO and shutter speeds. It also includes automatic face detection, which can isolate up to 32 faces in 0.03 seconds. Related to this, the camera has a Smile Capture feature (to take the picture when someone smiles) and Blink Detection (which warns you if your subject blinks). Face detection, by the way, isn't only for humans. The RZ18 can also detect cat and dog faces while giving priority to three pre-registered pets when there are other cats or dogs in the vicinity.
The PENTAX Optio RZ18 also includes a 3-inch HVGA high resolution LCD display as well as the ability to record HD video in 720p at 30 frames per second.
PENTAX Optio RZ18 Features:
- 16-megapixel sensor
- 18x zoom lens (35mm equivalent to 25-450mm)
- PENTAX Shake Reduction
- 3.0-inch LCD screen (460K pixels)
- 720p HD video recording at 30 frames per second
- Creative special effects and digital filters (Miniature, Toy Camera, and more)
- Advanced 9-point autofocus
- 4cm super macro mode
- Face Detection (with upgraded Pet Mode)
- Wireless remote-control shooting (with optional PENTAX infrared remote controller)
- Burst shooting up to 40 images (max speed is 9 images per second)
- Three Aspect Ratio choices (4:3, 16:9, 1:1)
- Digital Panorama Mode
- MediaImpression viewing and editing software (Mac & PC) included.
- Optimized for use with "Eye-Fi" wireless memory cards.
- Dimensions: 4.3 x 2.4 x 1.4-inches
- Weight (with battery and memory card): 6.7 ounces
The PENTAX Optio RZ18 will be available in October (2011) with an MSRP of $299.99. Color choices include black, pearl white, or metallic orange.
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