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Pentax launches Optio S1 digital compact camera

By dpreview staff on Mar 2, 2011 at 22:00 GMT

Pentax has launched the Optio S1 digital compact camera in three apparently 'gem-like' finishes. Sporting a 14MP sensor, 2.7" LCD and 5x optical zoom that starts at a wide 28mm equivalent, it features 720p HD video recording, sensor-shift image stabilization and a High Dynamic Range (HDR) mode. The camera also comes with the latest set of image-processing filters including Miniature and HDR filter.

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Press Release:

PENTAX UNVEILS OPTIO S1 DIGITAL CAMERA: ELEGANT, NEW COMPACT AVAILABLE IN THREE GEM-LIKE FINISHES FOR SPRING STYLE

GOLDEN, CO (March 2, 2011) - PENTAX Imaging Company announced the PENTAX Optio S1 digital compact camera with advanced, easy-to-use features and an eye-catching, gem-like finish. Available in striking Chrome or a glossy Black or Green, the Optio S1 is a fashionable and elegant digital camera with an ultralight body featuring:

  • A high resolution 14 megapixel sensor for exceptional image detail.
  • Wide angle 5X optical zoom lens (28-140mm) for flexible image framing.
  • Ample 2.7 inch LCD for easy capture and playback of images and video.
  • Sensor-shift PENTAX Shake Reduction (SR) system for sharp low light and telephoto images.
  • Widescreen 720p HD video capture.
  • Powerful PENTAX Auto Picture mode for set-it-and-forget-it shooting convenience.
  • Fast Face Detection, Smile Capture, and Blink Detection for perfect portraits.
  • High Dynamic Range (HDR) mode for outstanding detail in wide exposure images (new to PENTAX digital compact cameras).
  • PENTAX infrared remote control (remote purchased separately).

With meticulous attention given to every design detail, the ultra-compact Optio S1 is the perfect choice for digital photographers who want a very capable, yet elegant and classy, digital camera.

PENTAX OPTIO S1 FACT SHEET
Three Stylish Colors
The PENTAX Optio S1 aluminum alloy housing is available in three high-quality finishes including a mirror-finish Chrome, or a high gloss Black or Green. Each model features a color coordinated lens barrel and translucent control buttons, as well as laser-engraved logos and feature descriptions on the front panel.  The meticulous design detail of the Optio S1 makes it a digital camera that doubles as a fashion accessory.

Versatile 5X optical zoom lens with 28mm wide-angle coverage
The ultra-compact Optio S1 features an 5X optical zoom lens covering focal lengths from 5mm to 25mm (equivalent in the 35mm format to approximately 28mm wide angle to 140mm telephoto) that may be used for a wide variety of subjects and scenes including landscapes, architecture,  group portraits in confined spaces, and tightly cropped snapshots taken from a distance.  An Intelligent Zoom function allows even tighter zooming in on the subject, extending the digital zoom range up to 33.5X with no loss of image fidelity.

Exceptional image quality
With exceptional image resolution of 14 effective megapixels and an advanced imaging engine with a high-performance PENTAX zoom lens and a mechanical Shake Reduction (SR) system, the Optio S1 delivers brilliant, high-quality images with well-defined details even when enlarged to poster size.

Triple Shake Reduction (SR) image stabilization technology to prevent image blur
Sensor-shift SR
The Optio S1 offers and advanced sensor-shift SR mechanism for sharp, blur-free images even when shooting telephoto shots, sunsets or indoor scenes in incident light.  The camera compensates for camera shake up to approximately three shutter steps.
High-Sensitivity Digital SR
The Optio S1 automatically raises the sensitivity as high as ISO 6400 for higher shutter speeds to minimize the adverse effects of camera shake and subject movement when shooting still images in low-light conditions.
* When the High-Sensitivity anti-shake mode is selected, the recorded size is fixed to 5M (2592 x 1944 pixels).
Movie SR*
During movie recording, the Optio S1 can prevent blurry images and annoying camera shake by using Movie Shake Reduction.
* When the Movie SR mode is selected, the angle of view becomes narrower than normal shooting.

High-quality, widescreen HD movie recording with dedicated REC button
The Optio S1 captures detailed movie clips at 16:9 high-definition TV resolution (1280 x 720 pixels)* at a frame rate of approximately 30 frames per second.  A new, dedicated Movie REC button positioned on the back panel initiates movie recording from any shooting mode without delay.
* When the Optio S1’s AV output terminal is used, movie clips are output at standard definition. If the user wishes to play back movie clips in high definition (1280 x 720 pixels), the data must be transferred to a personal computer for playback.

Advanced, user-friendly Auto Picture mode for hands-off selection of the best shooting mode
The Optio S1 features the PENTAX-original Auto Picture mode that automatically selects the most appropriate shooting mode for a given subject or scene by accurately and instantly accessing all photographic conditions affecting the subject or scene. This set-it-and-forget-it mode detects 14 different subjects and scene types including people, landscape, blue sky, sunset, and more.  The mode instantly optimizes all camera settings such as sensitivity and shutter speed for the quality images for the type of subject and scene identified.

Upgraded face detection for greater convenience
A new-generation Face Detection AF & AE function instantly and accurately detects the subject’s face in the image field and a Natural Skin mode reproduces natural, healthy skin texture.

Creative digital filters and tools
The Optio S1 offers nine digital filters, including Toy Camera and Retro, to add various creative visual effects to recorded images without a computer.  A new Miniature filter converts any scene into an image full of miniatures, and an HDR filter (first ever on a PENTAX compact) produces images with outstanding exposure detail in wide exposure situations.
                              
Additional features

  • Wireless remote shooting using an optional PENTAX infrared remote control
  • Large 2.7-inch color LCD monitor with approximately 230,000 dots for easy viewing of images and menus
  • In body recharge system for simple and convenient, cellphone-like battery recharging
  • Compatibility with SDXC memory cards for recording of high-quality images over extended hours*
  • Dynamic Range (D-Range) adjustment to prevent whitewashed (overexposed) and blacked-out (underexposed) areas in an image
  • Image viewing, editing and filing software included: ArcSoft MediaImpression 3.0 for PENTAX (Windows version) and MediaImpression 2.1 for PENTAX (Macintosh version)

*UHS-speed-class data transmission not available.

Pentax Optio S1 specifications

Sensor • 14.1 million effective pixels
• 1/2.3" type CCD
Image sizes • 4288 x 3216
• 3216 x 3216
• 4224 x 2376 (16:9)
• 3072 x 2304
• 1600 x 1200
• 640 x 480
Sensitivity TBD
Lens • Focal length 5-25mm
• 28−140mm equivalent (in 35mm terms)
• 9 elements in 8 groups (4 aspherical elements)
• f/3.9−5.7
LCD • 2.7 inch TFT LCD with anti-reflective coating
• 230,000 dots
Image format • JPEG (Exif 2.3)
• DCF 2.0
• DPOF
• PRINT Image Matching III
Movie format • AVI (Motion JPEG)
Memory • SD / SDHC / SDXC
• Internal TBA
Focus • TTL Contrast detection Autofocus system
• 9 point AF, Spot AF, Auto Tracking AF, Macro, Super Macro, Infinity Landscape, Pan Focus, Manual Focus
Focus distance • Normal: 40cm to infinity (wide), 101cm to infinity (tele)
• Macro:10cm-50cm (wide), 30cm-50cm (tele)
• Super Macro: Approx 1 cm to 30cm (at fixed zoom, set automatically)
Exposure control • Multi-segment
• Center
• Spot
Shutter speed • 1/1600th − 1/4sec
• 4 sec in Night Scene mode
Exposure comp. • -/+ 2EV (1/3EV steps)
Flash • Integrated auto flash with Red-eye reduction function
• Flash On and Flash Off modes
Flash range • 3.6m (W, Auto ISO)
• 2.4m (T, Auto ISO)
Video • HD, 1280 x 720p 30/15fps
• VGA, 640 x 480 30/15fps
• QVGA, 320 x 240 30/15fps
• with video editing and digital stabilization
Battery • D-LI178 rechargeable Lithium-ion battery
Interfaces • PC / AV (PAL / NTSC)
• USB 2.0 (Hi-Speed)
Drive modes • One-shot
• Self-timer (2 or 10 sec)
• Continuous shooting
• Burst shooting (3.2fps for 10 frames)
• Remote control: Infrared (optional)
Digital filters

• B&W
• Sepia
• Toy camera
• Retro
• Color Emphasis
• Soft
• Brightness
• Miniature
• HDR

White balance • Auto
• Daylight
• Shade
• Tungsten
• Fluorescent
• Manual
Weight (inc battery and card) • 115g (3.9oz)
Dimensions (inc lens) • 91mm x 53mm x 20mm (3.6 x 2.1 x 0.8”)

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