Pentax Optio W30

Review Date : Tue, 18 Sep 2007

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Pentax Optio W30
Pentax Optio W30 Pentax Optio W30 back Pentax Optio W30 top

Pentax's W range welcomes a replacement to the W20 model, with its main feature being its waterproof and dustproof capabilities

Pros: Waterproof, Ease of use, Noise control
Cons: Average performance, Design

Pentax’s W range sees a new member in the form of the W30, replacing the W20 model, with its main feature being its waterproof and dustproof capabilities.

Key improvements include expanded waterproof functionality, with depths of 3m for up to two hours now possible. The seven-megapixel sensor remains the same but the ISO range has now been stretched a stop to 3200. Anti-shake is provided in the form of Digital Shake Reduction mode, which shifts the ISO to match shooting conditions, and visibility of the 2.5in LCD screen is aided by a Bright View mode. The lens itself has also been coated to prevent water droplets from sticking to its surface.

Both start-up and focusing times are good and moving through the zoom range is well-paced. In low light it does tend to dawdle a bit before making its mind up, but this is fairly typical and no cause for concern.

It is clear though, that the W30 was designed with one key purpose in mind and this does infringe on both the overall construction and usability in non-aquatic situations. The shutter button in particular is slightly resistant, while the elongated shape of its body does accommodate a well-spaced set of buttons and the 2.5in LCD screen, but this comes at the expense of comfortable handling. Nevertheless, as an uncomplicated holiday-proof camera that can take a little abuse, you should need little else.

Verdict

Pentax’s W30 has its merits but is only an ideal choice if you are looking for a waterproof camera


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Price as reviewed

£180.00

Scores

Scores
Design 15/20
Image Quality 17/20
Performance 15/20
Value 16/20
Features 17/20
Overall Score 80%