Pentax X70 review
I was excited to get one of the first X70s when it became available on April 1st. I really didn't know what features it would end up having after reading the preliminary list. One of the things that impressed me that I didn't know anything about was the fact that Pentax for the first time that I knew of, included a dedicated auto focus assist lamp! No more raising of the flash to assist in focusing in low light. I remember reading oh so many reviews on DP Review how Pentax didn't have auto focus assist lamps on their cameras! Now they do! (or at least on one of them anyway)...
As far as image quality is concerned, not bad! Not the sharpest, but not as soft as some early reviewers have said. The zoom is LONG! 24x optical gives you a heck of a lot of reach and if you add just a bit of digital zoom, you can get some really close images without too much distortion. Like most of Pentax's point and shoot offerings, it has the typical scene modes, but also improves on ISO quality (up to ISO 6400 at 5MP). ISO is quite usable up to 800. but 1600 is a let down as it has been on other cameras of this class. The camera shifts to 5MP when using ISO 3200 and above, but surprisingly I think the quality is better at 3200 than it is at 1600.
This model also features auto exposure bracketing with -/+2EV range which is unusual for a P&S camera except for certain G & S Canon models. Only the latest offerings from Olympus & Panasonic have this range now. All the others are still -/+1EV. This camera produces some pretty good HDR shots once the three exposure bracketed shots are processed by Photomatix.
The camera defaults to bright mode and this causes flower colors to over-saturate, so either shoot in Flower scene mode, or change to natural mode.
I have not had the chance to use the camera in movie mode, so I can't comment on that yet.
12 MP with very good image quality
dedicated autofocus assist lamp
24x optical zoom with up to 6.25x digital zoom (it does have its uses)
triple image stabilization (Shake reduction, Digital Image Stabilization [ISO shift], movie image stabilization)
A multitude of features that can make you dizzy.
The camera is small and very light (no need to make the camera large enough to fit 4 AA batteries)
Zoom is fast and focus is quick
No EVF diopter adjustment
Short battery life due to its small size
Battery life is a bit short because the battery is TINY! Only 925mAH! If you get 200 shots, you're lucky, so invest in another or two more batteries. The other issue is that the EVF does not have a diopter adjustment, so if your vision isn't 20/20, you may have difficulty focusing your eye in the small viewfinder.
Other than that, I did not encounter any problems with the camera.
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