Pentax Optio W10 digital compact camera
The Pentax Optio W10 is a typical example of a small camera aiming at the photographer looking for user convenience and an easy-to-operate camera. This type of user generally isn't keen on having to worry about all sorts of "unnecessary" actions; they just want to capture the fun moment by a simple, single push of the button. The Pentax W10 is a camera that features virtually no manual settings, but does offer a diversity of creative photo options through the intelligent in-camera software. The camera's operation is straightforward, and the structure of both the menu and the buttons has been kept clear and simple. We do not see all that many changes from its predecessor, with this camera it are the details that count. The six Megapixels have remained unaltered, and offer sufficient material to print to up and including A4 size. It would be great if Pentax managed to equip a future generation with slightly more zoom in wide-angle or tele. The 3x optical zoom isn't quite up to par anymore, although it is still regarded as a standard for average daily use.
Pentax W10 - Quality of the images
The Pentax W10 reacts pleasantly fast to the actions of the user, which makes it a true entry-level camera. The quality of the images proves excellent, showing lively and natural colour saturation. The standard sharpening of the camera's predecessor can also be found on the Pentax Optio W10, although this version can be switched down a notch. It should be said that the sharpening does show a noticeable increase of noise from 400 ISO and up. However, this can't be blamed on the optics. With their W-series, Pentax have already proven to be well in control of the internal zoom construction, and the same goes for the Optio W10. The optical zoom lens performs excellently and ensures the images feature a proper sharpness and plenty of detail. When looking at the sharpness in wide-angle images, we see only a slight decrease at the edges, but this is far from irksome, and tends to occur quite frequently with this type of small lenses. Upon zooming in lightly on the subject, however, the edges quickly improve. Remarkable is the impressive control the camera has over chromatic aberration.
Pentax Optio W10 - Water- & Dustproof camera
Despite its automatic characteristics, the Pentax Optio W10 proves to be surprisingly versatile. It goes without saying that the first and foremost asset of this camera is its water-proof and dust-proof features. Thanks to this qualification, the Pentax W10 can be used in virtually all imaginable situations. Whether you want to capture images underwater, on or around the water, or in somewhat dusty surroundings, you need not worry about possible damage to the camera - there is simply no risk. Do keep in mind, however, that the camera can be used underwater up to a maximum of 30 minutes, and at a depth of 1.5 meter! Another positive aspect of the camera is that the supplied strap proves very handy under water; seeing as the camera does not float… This unique feature, combined with the very extensive range of exposure functions and the friendly operation, ensures that the Pentax Optio W10 is an easy-to-operate entry-level camera with mature charm.
Pentax W10 underwater review - Successful concept
Not only did we test the Pentax Optio W10 above the water, we have also submitted it to a fair share of underwater testing. It should be said that the water-proof housing adds a large, indisputable surplus value to the camera. The quality of the images proves excellent, and even the underwater shots generally suffice. The Pentax Optio W10 is a camera that will appeal to a large audience. Moreover, it will prove right up the alley of those who love water sports. Photographing both in and around the water is very enjoyable indeed, and allows you to capture shots you normally wouldn't dare dream of, considering the risk of damage to the camera. The Pentax Optio W10 is a very attractive camera, and will undoubtedly be the perfect holiday companion. A camera that ensures truly effortless, trouble-free photography; a successful concept!
Continue to take a closer look at our Pentax Sample Gallery with numerous photos taken with the Optio W10 camera. The sample images are taken in a resolution of 2816 x 2112 pixels in the sunny Caribbean island; Curacao.
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SanDisk Ultra II SD card
I opted for a fast SanDisk Extreme III Secure Digital card to test the Pentax Optio W10 in practice. Although this small card guarantees the fastest reading and writing speeds for an SD card, it must be said that it is a bit of an overkill to combine it with a camera such as the Pentax W10; the camera simply fails to keep up, in fact, it doesn't need much more than a standard card or a faster card such as the Ultra II SanDisk SD card. As mentioned earlier, the Pentax Optio W10 is not the fastest of the bunch, and will thus not really ask much of a card. If you will be taking the camera with you on holiday, and plan to capture significantly more photos than you normally would, we would recommend choosing a card with a larger storage capacity. The Pentax Optio W10 simply performs its best when combined with a minimum of 256MB, or preferably 512MB if possible.
Considering 512MB of storage capacity:
2816 x 2112 pixels - best - 164 images
2816 x 2112 pixels - better - 332 images
2816 x 2112 pixels - good - 496 images
2560 x 1920 pixels - best - 196 images
2560 x 1920 pixels - better - 380 images
2560 x 1920 pixels - good - 548 images
2304 x 1728 pixels - best - 288 images
2304 x 1728 pixels - better - 496 images
2304 x 1728 pixels - good - 712 images
2048 x 1536 pixels - best - 288 images
2048 x 1536 pixels - better - 612 images
2048 x 1536 pixels - good - 892 images
1600 x 1200 pixels - best - 496 images
1600 x 1200 pixels - better - 824 images
1600 x 1200 pixels - good - 1204 images
1024 x 768 pixels - best - 976 images
1024 x 768 pixels - better - 1648 images
1024 x 768 pixels - good - 2088 images
640 x 480 pixels - best - 1956 images
640 x 480 pixels - better - 2848 images
640 x 480 pixels - good - 3916 images
Video resolution 640x480 pixels - best - 30fps - 7 min 44 sec
Video resolution 640x480 pixels - better - 30fps - 10 min 24 sec
Video resolution 640x480 pixels - good - 30fps - 15 min 48 sec
Video resolution 640x480 pixels - best - 15fps - 15 min 20 sec
Video resolution 640x480 pixels - better - 15fps - 20 min 4 sec
Video resolution 640x480 pixels - good - 15fps - 30 min 40 sec
Video resolution 320x240 pixels - best - 30fps - 12 min 24 sec
Video resolution 320x240 pixels - better - 30fps - 16 min 48 sec
Video resolution 320x240 pixels - good - 30fps - 23 min 40 sec
Video resolution 320x240 pixels - best - 15fps - 23 min 40 sec
Video resolution 320x240 pixels - better - 15fps - 32 min 27 sec
Video resolution 320x240 pixels - good - 15fps - 47 min 24 sec