Pentax Optio M30 review
I've had this camera for roughly a month and a half. I've just come back from a trip to Vegas, where I had the chance to give it a really good test in many different lighting conditions.
The camera is well built, with it's metal body. The features are decent, it is easy to use.
The picture quality is a huge disappointment. I have a good balanced understanding of what to expect from a camera like this having owned several point and shoot digitals, including an old Pentax Optio 330.
On a bright sunny day, the results were average. White Balance doesn't work well, the camera has a serious vingnetting problem, and low light photography is terrible. Extream Grain, combined with the camera not being able to decide what white balance setting to use makes for very poor photographs.
One thing I did like, was the "soft" flash option, which fires the flash a little less intensly, and thus makes for a much more pleasing reslut.
The LCD is bright and large, but not as crisp as some of it's competitors, even with the same pixel count.
The camera is a perfect size, being easy to hold even for large hands
Video was quite good for a point and shoot camera, and suprizingly, it did quite a good job even in really poor lighting...
Despite all of the positive aspects of the camera, the most important one, the image quality, is a significant disappointment.
While images taken during the day are of good quality, images taken in darker circumstances are grainy beyond any acceptable level. This combined with an auto white balance setting that was very unreliable, made for a camera that was not only a lot of work to use in darker situations, but also yielded grainy off colored photographs.
The amazing truth, is that despite some extra features, and the size, this camera took worse photographs than my 3mp Optio 330 from years ago. I took many great photographs in the middle of the night down poorly lit streets in Venace with great success.
vignetting was very noticeable, producing prominent darker areas in all four corners of the frame.
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