Pentax Optio S5i Review
Like its predecessors the Optio S5i is incredibly compact, and is truly pocketable. The 3x zoom lens retracts completely into the body and there is little in the way of protrusions on the body itself (aside from the small narrow grips and the single strap lug). The stylish, unfussy design, aluminum alloy construction and careful use of surface textures gives the S5i a gem-like feel that simply oozes quality; it is very well put together and offers surprisingly good handling. At around 120g fully loaded the S5i is also as featherweight as it is Lilliputian, and can easily sit in a shirt pocket or the smallest purse, making it a real 'carry anywhere' camera. As is increasingly common these days the S5i is available in a choice of colors - though in this case only three; cool silver (a bluey gunmetal grey - shown here), Indigo (bright blue) and silver. Not all colors are available in all parts of the world.
In your hand
For such a small, light camera the S5i handles surprisingly well. The milled surface used on the majority of the body makes it much less 'slippery' than shiny cameras like the Canon SD300, and it feels a lot safer for it - especially when shooting single-handed. The two tiny grips (on the front and rear of the body near the right hand edge) may look useless, but they actually work very well, and the camera feels very stable in use. The zoom and shutter controls are perfectly placed, and - unlike many ultra-compacts I've used - I didn't find myself accidentally pressing the buttons on the rear of the camera with my thumb when taking pictures.
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