Steve's Digicams - Breaking News - Pentax 01/04/05 Press Release


Press Releases - January 4, 2005

Pentax To Deliver More Waterproof Digital And Accessories With Announcement Of OptioWPi

Pentax OptioWPi

GOLDEN, Co. (August 31, 2005)…PENTAX announced another WP series compact digital camera that offers higher resolution for shooting performance in a variety of conditions. The new PENTAX OptioWPi features 6.0 effective megapixels packed in a slim body that offers that capture images up to five feet underwater and offers a JIS Class 5 dustproof rating. Perfect for extreme indoor or outdoor adventure, the OptioWPi offers high resolution images with a quick start-up, a 3X zoom lens and an ultra-fast 9-point Autofocus to keep your subjects sharp.

"Our OptioWP series is more than just waterproof. These cameras are lifeproof and able to go anywhere there is likely to be a photo opportunity," said Ned Bunnell, director of marketing, PENTAX Imaging Company.

The PENTAX OptioWPi also offers a 2.0 inch LCD monitor, a quick 0.6 second start-up, a recover function to retrieve erased images and overall operational ease. The camera will ship in October 2005 for US.

PENTAX Imaging Company shipped the camera’s predecessor, the OptioWP, in April 2005 and followed with the announcement earlier this month of the limited availability of a protective, silicone Skin. Priced at .95 US, the new Skins are designed to fit both the OptioWPi and the OptioWP. Additional plans are underway to offer the PENTAX OptioWPi in the alternative colors of burgundy and cobalt as well as traditional silver. More information about the accessory Skins and the alternative colors will be available from the PENTAX microsite:

Pentax OptioWPi


Waterproof Performance Without Additional Housing

The OptioWPi features JIS Class 8 waterproof performance to withstand up to 30 minutes of continuous operation at an underwater depth of 5 fee (1.5 meters). Add to this Class 5 dustproof performance of category 2 (machines produced to prevent internal changes in atmospheric pressure) for an ideal camera in extreme conditions indoors or out.

Sophisticated Body Design

The slim, flat body design is ideal for pocket or purse portability. The ergonomic contoured grip design provides users with a more confident, more comfortable shooting experience.

The OptioWPi features high-quality aluminum alloy for the front panel with a textured face.

The rounded overall form of the OptioWPi is accentuated by a water ring design element, a four-way control key and other details that give the camera a look that is both sophisticated and user-friendly.

A 3X Optical Zoom Lens and 6.0 Eeffective Megapixels

The OptioWPi delivers premier optical performance with a lens comprised of 11 elements in 9 groups. It also includes three aspherical lens elements that compensate for aberration to make for even sharper results, and makes use of a refraction lens system that enables it to deliver 6.3-18.9mm 3X optical zoom performance and cover angles of view equivalent to those of a 38-114mm lens in 35mm format without ever extending from the camera body. Together these features allow photographers to make the very most of the OptioWPi's ample 6.0 effective megapixels.

Pentax OptioWPi

2.0 Inch, 115,000 Pixel LCD Monitor

Despite slim, flat body dimensions, the OptioWPi features a large, 2.0 inch LCD monitor with 115,000 pixels for precise confirmation of recorded images. This low-reflection monitor also features a backlighting mechanism that effectively maximizes visibility, even when used outside on sunny days, and additionally offers a "Power saving mode" that automatically reduces backlighting intensity to make batteries last longer.

Mode Palette Makes Operation Easy

The popular Mode palette featured on other Optio models displays multiple shooting or playback options simultaneously. For the shooting Mode palette, the user can display 15 mode icons at once out of a total of 22, with the remaining 7 icons replacing the selected 15 on the user's command. What's more, just a press of the Green button while the Mode palette is on is all it takes to display easy-to-understand explanations and photos for the selected item – reducing the need to consult the user manual for simpler operation.

Continuous AF And Tracking AF

Continuous AF* or Tracking AF** are activated automatically upon selection of Sport, Pet or Kids modes – allowing the camera to track a moving subject within the frame and maintain accurate focus accordingly.

* For focus on stationary subjects, the shutter release button is depressed halfway to drive the lens to focus lock. Continuous AF, on the other hand, allows the lens to be driven constantly to ensure swift, precise focus as soon as the shutter release button is depressed halfway.

** Tracking AF continually detects both horizontal and vertical movement of the main subject to ensure sharp focus at the desired moment. Confirmation of the focus area can be done on the focus frame on the LCD monitor.

High-Sensitivity Shooting

The OptioWPi supports mixed-pixel, high-sensitivity* shooting, which offers the choice to shoot at a Standard Output Sensitivity of ISO 800. This results in crisp and clear shots with minimal noise, hand shake and other blurring. When high-sensitivity shooting is selected, recording size is fixed at 1280 X 960 pixels.

*Available when using Candlelight mode and Report mode only (automatic or manual activation).

Green Mode For Swift, Automated Shooting

The Green button activates Green mode for automatic control of all settings with the exception of zoom. Not only is this function handy when others take your picture or you lose track of camera settings, but the Green button can also be used as a shortcut – allowing the user to assign up to four* frequently used functions for swift access.

*Functions that can be assigned to the Green button: Green mode, recording size, image quality, white balance, AF area, focus limit, sensitivity, exposure compensation, sharpness, saturation, contrast, and off.

Recovery Function Retrieves Erased Images

The OptioWPi eliminates the panic when images or audio are erased. A handy recovery function remains active until the erased data has been overwritten or the power is switched off.

Picture Voice* Function Attaches Sound Data To Stills

Up to 20 seconds of audio data can be recorded while a still image is being shot – extending from 10 seconds before to 10 seconds after the moment of shutter release. Such capability allows users to capture special moments in a more memorable manner.

*How it works: Upon selecting Picture Voice mode, the OptioWPi starts accumulating audio data, then automatically stops recording 10 seconds after shutter release. The accumulated audio data (10 seconds before the shot, plus 10 seconds after) is then stored as an attachment to the recorded image.

Framing Options

Not only does the OptioWPi enable users to put images together with photo frames within the camera itself, but it also offers a choice of shooting options to produce results best suited to a pre-selected frame. Frames can also be added at the time of printing. Three different frames are installed by default within the camera, which can be easily replaced by up to three of many downloadable frames available on the PENTAX website.

In-Camera Movie Editing

A Movie editing function edits recorded movies in-camera. Selected clips can be saved as new movie files, or users may select single frames for saving as individual still images. Separate movies can also be combined as one file.

* The size of a storable still image depends on the recorded size of a movie.

Additional Features

  • Ready to shoot just 0.6 seconds after the power is turned on
  • Real-time display of "washed out" and "blacked out" areas
  • Soft flash function avoids overexposure when shooting with flash in close proximity
  • Up to 4X digital zooming
  • Macro mode enables shooting as close as 1cm from the subject when lens is in wide setting
  • Three color modes (full-color, B&W, sepia) for versatile movie recording
  • "Clock Mode" function displays the time even when the camera is off
  • SD memory card compatibility; approximately 10.5MB built-in memory
  • Standard image viewer, ACDSee for PENTAX software
  • FotoNation’s red-eye compensation function for flash shots
  • DPOF, Exif Print, and PRINT Image Matching III compatibility

PENTAX Imaging Company is an innovative leader in the production of digital and film cameras, scopes, eyepieces, binoculars, lenses, mobile printers, scanners and internet cameras. For more than 80 years, PENTAX technology has developed durable, reliable products that meet the needs of consumers and businesses. With headquarters in Golden, Colorado, PENTAX Imaging Company is a division of PENTAX of America, Inc

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