Steve's Digicams - Breaking News - Pentax 08/21/2006 Press Release




Pentax

Press Releases - August 21, 2006



Pentax Upgrades Two Popular Compact Digital Models





GOLDEN, CO. (August 21, 2006)…PENTAX Imaging Company has announced significant upgrades to two popular PENTAX compact digital camera lines. The latest model in the PENTAX Optio A series is the Optio A20 now featuring 10.0 effective megapixels and three anti-shake functions including Shake Reduction, Blur Reduction High ISO mode, and a Movie Anti-shake all designed to improve image quality.

PENTAX also announced the latest model in the Optio M series, a compact, affordable digital camera now offering 7.0 effective megapixels plus a wide range of basic features including extended AA battery life that makes the camera an ideal travel companion. This new model also features the new PENTAX High ISO Blur Reduction mode for sharper images without camera shake or subject blurring.

The Optio A20 will ship in October 2006 for under US .00, while the Optio M20 will ship in September 2006 for US .00.

PENTAX Imaging Company is an innovative leader in the production of digital SLR and compact cameras, scopes, eyepieces, binoculars, lenses, mobile printers and scanners. 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.

PENTAX Optio A20 Fact Sheet

10.0 effective megapixels image quality

The Optio A20 produces clear, high-quality images with 10.0 effective megapixels. The superb level of resolution makes it possible to produce prints with crisp detail even when the photo is enlarged to A#* size. The Optio A20 image sensor is a large 1/1.8 inch CCD with a wide light-sensitive area, which realizes superior tone reproduction, fine textures, and greater noise reduction.
*A3 (paper) size is an International / European paper size established by the ISO (International Standards Organization). It measures 297 x 420 millimeters, or equivalent to 11.69 x 16.54 inches.

High-performance smc PENTAX zoom lens

The Optio A20 is equipped with a high-quality smc PENTAX zoom lens, which is renowned for its clarity and high-contrast image performance. The lens configuration, with seven elements in five groups including three aspherical elements, effectively corrects for spherical aberration. The lenses are coated using a PENTAX-developed technique to reduce ghosting and flare.

Three Anti-Shake functions featured

SR (Shake Reduction)

The SR (Shake Reduction) mechanism, developed by PENTAX, features two gyro sensors that detect the amount of shake and an image sensor (CCD) that moves both horizontally and vertically to reduce the camera shake. The SR mechanism effectively prevents shake at the instant that the shutter is clicked to take a photograph.

Blur Reduction mode*

In this mode, the camera automatically adjusts the sensitivity to as high as ISO 1600 according to the brightness of the subject. The higher sensitivities permit faster shutter speeds that reduce not only camera shake but also the blurring caused by moving subjects.
*The image recording size is fixed to 5 M (2592 x 1944 pixels) when Blur Reduction mode is selected.

Movie Anti-Shake Function*

Camera shake while taking a movie can also be corrected automatically by software, thanks to an electronic, movie anti-shake function.
* Using the movie anti-shake function results in a narrower field of view than during normal recording.

New Application Specific Integrated Circuit (ASIC)

A new ASIC supplies the Optio A20 with dramatically more image-processing power. With this ASIC high-speed processing capability, the Optio A20 attains a high level of tone reproduction and color correction based on enormous amounts of actual photo data.

Face Recognition AF & AE for beautiful one-step portraits

The Optio A20 features the new Face Recognition AF & AE* function, which helps ensure bright, beautiful photos of people with perfectly focused faces free of shadows caused by exposing for the background or for the colors of clothing. This useful function automatically detects the position of the subject anywhere in the photo frame and then adjusts the focus and optimizes the exposure for the detected position.
* This camera’s Face Recognition AF & AE function uses the Face Tracker face-recognition technology from FotoNation.

Auto-tracking AF continuously focuses on a moving subject

The Optio A20’s auto-tracking AF feature continuously focuses on subjects such as kids and pets that move around unpredictably. Since the focus frame automatically follows the movement of the subject inside the photo frame, you can be sure to capture those instantaneous photo opportunities.

High-quality movies with an anti-shake function

The Optio A20 smoothly captures movies at 30 fps (frames per second) at sizes up to 640 x 480 pixels with image quality rivaling camcorders. Since it employs the DivX® (MPEG-4 compliant) movie format,* the Optio A20 can record longer, high-quality movies.
*The Optio A20 is DivX® certified. Movie playback is not supported on Macintosh operating systems.

Auto Picture mode automatically determines the best settings for the shooting conditions

The Auto Picture mode lets the camera automatically determine the shooting conditions for Landscape, Portrait, Night Scene, and Program modes and choose the optimum settings for each subject. This PENTAX original function makes photography a lot easier for users since it eliminates the necessity of making a number of individual settings. A wide range of exposure setting mode in Programmed Exposure mode, the camera automatically determines the shutter speed and aperture. The camera also includes "Shutter-Priority AE" mode and "Manual Exposure" mode, which the user can set freely depending on the effect they are aiming to achieve.

Compact and lightweight body

Despite incorporating a large CCD and the SR system, we managed to create a slimmer and lighter body by using our unique Sliding Lens system* together with high-density mounting technology.
* PENTAX’s proprietary lens system: The central lens group slides upward from the optical axis and the front and back lens groups slip under them. Housing the lens in two steps in the lens cylinder reduces overall lens thickness, thereby minimizing body depth.

Supports the SDHC memory card for greater storage of high-quality images and longer movies

The Optio A20 supports two removable storage media: the conventional SD memory cards and the new SDHC memory cards.*
* SD High Capacity; these memory cards have capacities in excess of 2 GB.

Red-eye correction available after shooting

The Optio A20 comes with FotoNation’s red-eye correction function, which can correct red-eye problems, a side effect of flash photography, after the photo is taken. With the ability to manually select the area to correct, this function allows for more precise correction of red-eye photos.

Additional Features

  • Calendar Display function allows image retrieval based on the capture date
  • Easy image search and arrangement on a PC using a Date Folder function
  • Green Mode enables the use of fixed, automatic settings when taking a photograph
  • Digital zooming provides up to 4X magnification
  • Approximately 22MB of built-in memory
  • Pan-focus function for effortless snapshots
  • ACDSee for PENTAX image viewer/image management software
  • USB 2.0 (HI-SPEED) compatible
  • Supports PictBridge, DPOF functions, Exif Print, and PRINT Image Matching III





PENTAX Optio M20 Fact Sheet

7.0 effective megapixels permit beautiful, crisp prints even at large-format sizes

The Optio M20 produces clear images with impressive quality thanks to the high resolution afforded by its 7.0 effective megapixels and to its high-performance smc PENTAX lens. This superlative resolution makes it possible to attain prints with crisp details even when the photo is greatly enlarged.

Outstanding battery life

With a comprehensive energy-saving design, the Optio M20 provides exceptional battery life (approximately 220 images with AA alkaline batteries,* or approximately 700 images with AA lithium batteries*) for on-the-go power.
*Measured under testing conditions prescribed by CIPA standards.

New Blur Reduction mode reduces camera shake and subject blurring

The Optio M20 is equipped with a High ISO Blur Reduction mode, a new feature that lets you take photos at faster shutter speeds for sharper images even in dim lighting conditions such as night scenes and indoor sporting events. In this mode, the camera automatically adjusts the sensitivity to as high as ISO 1600 to match the brightness of the subject. The higher sensitivity permits faster shutter speeds that effectively reduce not just camera shake but also blurring caused by moving subjects.

Auto Picture mode automatically determines the best settings for the shooting conditions

The Auto Picture mode lets the camera automatically determine the shooting conditions for Landscape, Portrait, Night Scene, and Program modes and choose the optimum settings for each subject. This PENTAX original function simplifies shooting for users since it eliminates the necessity of making a number of individual settings.

High-quality Movies with Anti-Shake Function

The Optio M20 captures movies at 30 fps (frames per second) at resolutions up to 640 x 480 pixels and with an image quality rivaling that of camcorders. Camera shake while filming can be corrected automatically using the movie anti-shake function.*
*Using the movie anti-shake function results in a narrower field of view than that during normal recording.

Face Recognition AF & AE for beautiful one-step portraits

The camera includes Face Recognition AF & AE, which allows you to take bright, beautiful photos with perfectly focused faces free of backlighting shadows. This useful function automatically detects the position of the subject’s face anywhere in the photo frame and adjusts the focus and optimizes the exposure for the detected position.

Auto-tracking AF continuously focuses on a moving subject

The Optio M20’s auto-tracking AF feature continuously focuses on subjects such as kids and pets that move around unpredictably. Since the focus frame automatically follows the movement of the subject inside the photo frame, you can capture those instantaneous photo opportunities.

Easy-to-view LCD Monitor

The Optio M20 comes with a 2.5 inch LCD monitor, which displays subjects’ movement with very little time delay (60 fps). Its easy to view, large monitor and menu display make operation, setting, monitoring, and playback comfortable and easy. An auto LCD dimmer function automatically dims the backlight to preserve battery life and optimize the screen checks indoors and outdoors.

Easy to use 3X optical zoom

The Optio M20 includes a 3X optical zoom lens with a focal length from 38 to 114 mm for 35mm film, which is ideal for a broad spectrum of subjects from landscapes, through sightseeing photographs, to portraits.

SDHC memory card support for greater storage of high-quality images and longer movies

The Optio M20 supports two removable storage media: the conventional SD memory cards and the new SDHC memory cards.*
* SD High Capacity; these memory cards have capacities in excess of 2 GB.

Compatibility with the ImageLink printing system

The Optio M20 is compatible with the ImageLink printing system, which allows wireless connection of a digital camera to ImageLink-compatible printers. By simply placing the Optio M20 on the printer’s dock, the user can take advantage of simple, push-button printing of recorded images, without requiring a personal computer.

Additional features

  • World time function for 71 cities (28 time zones) worldwide
  • Calendar display lets you choose photos by date
  • Mode Palette provides quick access to 15 shooting modes and 13 playback modes
  • Soft flash function avoids overexposure during close-up flash photography
  • Macro mode allows close-up photography as near as 5 cm
  • Digital zooming provides up to 4X magnification
  • Approximately 21.9 MB of built-in memory
  • Includes the ACDSee for PENTAX image viewer/image management software
  • Supports PictBridge, DPOF functions, Exif Print, and PRINT Image Matching III


SD Logo and SDHC Logo are trademarks.
PENTAX and Optio are registered trademarks of PENTAX Corporation.
All other brands or product names are trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective companies.
QuickTime and QuickTime logo are trademarks used under license. The QuickTime logo is registered in U.S. and other countries.
This product supports PRINT Image Matching III. PRINT Image Matching enabled digital still cameras, printers and software help photographers to produce images more faithful to their intentions. Some functions are not available on printers that are not PRINT Image Matching III compliant.
Copyright 2001 Seiko Epson Corporation. All Rights Reserved.
Print Image Matching is a trademark of Seiko Epson Corporation.
The PRINT Image Matching logo is a trademark of Seiko Epson Corporation.
Designs and Specifications are subject to change without notice.





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