You've gotta admire feisty little Pentax. Undeterred by a dSLR market dominated by Canon and Nikon, plus the deep-pocketed relative newcomer Sony and tireless veteran Olympus, Pentax continues to refine and innovate its offerings rather than just trying to sell cheap models built from off-the-shelf parts. This year sees the first tangible result of the company's alliance with Samsung, a 14.6-megapixel CMOS sensor, which makes its way into Pentax's new midrange model, the $1,300 K20D (body only). Pentax's other new model, the entry-level $799 K200D (a kit with the new smc PENTAX DA 18-55mm … Read more
No dSLR launch is complete without a gaggle o' glass to accompany it. Here are the lenses Pentax announced in conjunction with its 2 dSLRs. (All photos courtesy of Pentax Corp.)
smc Pentax DA 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 AL II; ships with K200D in … Read more
Pentax just unveiled three new digital cameras in its Optio line of point-and-shoots, the Optio S12, M50, and E50. They run the gamut from budget-priced, simple shooter to high-resolution ultracompact.
The Optio S12 stands out as the smallest and most advanced of the three new cameras. At just 0.9 inch deep, Pentax claims the S12 is the smallest 12-megapixel camera of its class. We'll have to see for ourselves; according to Pentax's measurements, the S12 seems to be a hair or two smaller than the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-W200 and the Olympus Stylus 1200, though it might be … Read more
Following up on its current top T-series camera, the Cyber-shot DSC-T200, Sony has announced the Cyber-shot DSC-T300. Resolution has been pushed up to 10.1-megapixels, but the other main specs have remained the same. The T300 sports a 5X optical, 33-165mm f/3.5-4.4 zoom lens, 3.5-inch touchscreen LCD, and has optical image stabilization and a top sensitivity of ISO 3,200.
New to this camera, and some of Sony's other new compacts, are a handful of features aimed at dealing with common, though tricky, shooting situations. Cutest among these is an update to the Smile Shutter … Read more
The DSC-H10 has a 230,000-pixel 3-inch LCD display, compared to the 115,000-pixel, 2.5-inch version on the DSC-H3 it replaces. Given the lack of an electronic viewfinder, that's a nontrivial enhancement, but pretty much the only one. Expect to see it in mid-April, for $299. Now go read something more interesting.
Sony has updated its Cyber-shot DSC-W series of digital cameras with the announcement of four new models, the Cyber-shot DSC-W120, W130, W150, and W170. Sitting squarely between the company's budget-priced Cyber-shot S-series and its more upscale, style-minded T-series, these new cameras should appeal to users looking for a colorful, modestly-featured camera between $200 and $300.
All four new cameras feature a handful of new options based around an improved face detection system. According to Sony, these new cameras can now distinguish between adult and child faces, letting you decide whether the camera will base its auto-focus and auto-exposure on … Read more
Panasonic just unveiled its latest digital camera, the budget-priced compact Lumix DMC-LS80. On the surface, it appears to be your typical inexpensive point-and-shoot, though it includes one feature that belies its scant price tag. The camera uses an 8-megapixel sensor, a 2.5-inch LCD screen, and a 3x optical zoom lens. Slightly chunky at just over 1.2 inches thick, it takes two AA batteries for power. Besides the standard VGA (640 x 480) movie mode found on almost all snapshot cameras, the LS80 features a 30 fps WVGA (848 x 480) widescreen movie mode designed for 16:9 televisions. … Read more
In addition to the two new waterproof models announced today, Olympus has shared plans to sell three new Stylus compact cameras, all of which include sensor-shift image stabilization. Like some of their competitors, Olympus offers their IS in conjunction with an ISO-boosting mode, which they call Digital Image Stabilization. Together they somewhat predictably call the combo Dual Image Stabilization. Like Fujifilm models, Olympus compact cameras record their images to xD Picture Cards. Last year Fuji transitioned to xD/SD combo slots in all of their compact cameras. Olympus has chosen to stick with xD slots, but will include adapters with … Read more
Among the coolest of Olympus' compact cameras are their rugged, waterproof, dustproof, Stylus models. This year, the company is updating both of their go-anywhere cameras, offering the all-metal chassis 10.1-megapixel Stylus 1030 SW and the slightly more stylish 8-megapixel Stylus 850 SW. Both models include face detection for autofocus and auto exposure, ISO-boost Digital Image Stabilization instead of the more-effective mechanical stabilization found in some of Olympus' other Stylus models, and a handful of in-camera editing functions, including red-eye removal, panorama stitching of up to three shots and more. Like all of their compact cameras this year, these two … Read more
Olympus just announced four new additions to its FE-series of simple, budget-priced digital cameras. All four new models are 8-megapixel cameras and, with one exception, are priced at $200 or lower.
The FE-310 sits at the bottom of the pack as the series' least expensive camera. It sports a 5x optical zoom, but otherwise has no unique features to make it stand out. The FE-320 seems even less impressive on paper, until you consider its ultraslim size. At 0.65 inch, the FE-320 will be one of the slimmest FE-series cameras yet, and a full seven-hundredths of an inch thinner … Read more