A waterproof camera with an optical zoom.
Pentax Optio WP Waterproof Digital Camera (model 18383)
2005-06-11 - Decided on this camera.
I bought the Pentax OptioWP after doing what I considered at the time to be an exhaustive amount of research. I wanted a compact and rugged digital camera. The main feature I required was that it be waterproof and not just "splashproof". This ruled out the Olympus Stylus series of cameras, although I otherwise really like that lineup. I thought the OptioWP would be brushed aluminum but it doesn't appear to be. The all-metal design of the stylus series was quite attractive.
It appears that manufacturers are purposefully avoiding making a decent camera. Even Pentax chose to obsolete its 43WR, a camera which I would have purchased had I been able to find it. The featureset of the OptioWP is "larger" than the 43WR, but there were things which were definitely passed over during the transition.
I'll avoid a comparison between the specs of the 43WR and OptioWP, but the features I'll miss the most from the 43WR are:
- AA batteries
External power adapter
- Although it seems that the OptioWP can use this if I could get a cable for it.
- 640x480 @ 33fps movies
Things I won't miss:
- Boxy design
- Magnetic field sensitivity using AA batteries.
Lugging around rechargeable AA batteries.
It appears to be possible that the 43WR has a faster capture speed than the OptioWP. I hope to reduce capture time with a 32x SD card, but there are still things like startup time, shutter speed, autofocus speed and processing speed which I have no control over.
I am unsure of the quality differences. The reviews on this matter disturb me greatly, but the fact that right now I have no eye for and no background with such things should mean that I'll do just fine. I'm sure that it'll take pictures appropriate for the web. Archival quality stuff will wait for the professional digital cameras project, some years down the road.
Can format and use a 2 GB card.
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