Pentax decided to create the Optio S as an advanced, powerful camera
- one that would combine compact dimensions, impressive features and elegant
design; that would offer the power of 3.2 effective megapixels and the versatility
of a 3X optical zoom lens; and that would have the power to remain attractive
despite the passing of fashion.
1. An ultra-compact body with a stylish exterior
Pentax say that the OptioS design has been achieved without incurring any
sacrifice in performance or capability. It has a width of a mere 83mm, a height
of just 52mm, and a depth of only 20mm (excluding protruding parts), and is
therefore smaller than a conventional pack of cards. Additionally it weighs
just 98g without batteries, which means you can easily carry it in a shirt pocket
without you even noticing that it's there. It also offers the utmost in user
friendliness - combining exceptional portability with extreme ease of use.
Conventionally, the minimum dimensions of the lens barrel are limited by the
retraction mechanism as the lenses have to remain stored on an optical axis
while maintaining a minimal distance between each of the lenses. Pentax, however,
saved vital space by approaching the design of the lens barrel in an entirely
new way - achieving the storage of the lenses in two stages and allowing the
central lens group to deviate from the optical axis with the innovative "Sliding
Lens" system. Pentax also incorporated a significantly revised optical
design which, when combined with the "Sliding Lens" system, achieves
a reduction in camera depth of approximately 55%*.
A newly developed MCM (Multi Chip Module) in the electrical circuit board brings
about a volume reduction of approximately 57%*, and Pentax has incorporated
a number of cutting-edge devices into areas such as the LCD monitor and batteries.
In conventional camera production, companies wishing to design more compact
models begin by pinpointing areas of space within the internal structure. They
then seek to eradicate or minimise them by locating the surrounding components
closer together. Pentax, however, took a much more painstaking approach to achieving
minimum dimensions in the design of the OptioS - reassessing the function and
location of each component within the camera, and repositioning them where necessary
to achieve more compact dimensions through a greater degree of tessellation.
As a result, the super compact OptioS has an innovative space-saving, solid
Pentax has selected an aluminum alloy as the material for the main body. This
lends the camera an air of prestige, has a light weight, and is easily decorated
with the distinctive "spindle" pattern of the outer casing of the
OptioS. The exterior appearance also makes use of elegant lines, a pleasing
overall shape, and the addition of the Pentax logo.
In terms of operability, Pentax faced a particular challenge. Indeed with such
compact dimensions it can be difficult to offer high-level functionality without
some degree of operational awkwardness. Pentax, however, overcame this potential
problem with the intelligent placement of buttons and the design of a user-friendly
operating system. As a result, the OptioS offer simplistic operation with speed.
*Compared to the Pentax Optio330RS.
2. An ultra-compact 3X optical zoom lens
The OptioS is the first ever digital camera to feature an smc Pentax lens
- a lens widely recognized for its high-level image quality. Despite its compact
dimensions, the high-performance 3X optical zoom lens (equivalent to a 35-105mm
lens in 35mm format) is comprised of six elements in five groups (including
two dual-sided aspherical elements) and is capable of producing images of a
pleasingly high quality with only low-level image distortion.
The zooming capacity of the lenses is augmented with 2X digital zooming, which
offers smooth operation and realizes a combined zooming power of 6X zoom. Additionally,
autofocus offers easy button operation and pleasing performance, allowing you
to fill the frame with the head of a flower, or capture stunning shots of mountain
3. The digital precision of 3.2 effective megapixels
The OptioS offers pleasing image quality with the power of 3.2 effective
megapixels. Faithfully reproducing the delicate hues of flowers and capturing
fine details within landscape shots, it also incorporates advanced image processing
technology and makes use of primary color filters for the reproduction of more
natural, vivid colors.
4. Easy operation
With the incorporation of a newly developed image processing circuit and
revised algorithms within the firmware, the OptioS offers quick and easy operation.
The playback of images can be done with a single push of a standalone button
and the OptioS is always ready to shoot regardless of the mode you are in, so
you never miss a photo opportunity. The selection of one of a variety of shooting
modes (Program, Picture, Night Scene, Movie, Panorama Assist, 3D image, Digital
Filter and User modes) is also easy thanks to the Virtual Mode Dial, which is
displayed on the LCD monitor. For additional convenience, the OptioS also features
standalone buttons for frequently used shooting and playback functions, while
deletion and enlargement have been made faster with simplified processes. Response
time has also been accelerated, with a release time lag of approximately 0.01
*Time taken from full shutter button depression to the beginning of shooting,
OptioS is in Flash off mode with the focus lock (shutter depressed half way.)
5. A variety of shooting modes
The OptioS offers the choice of eight shooting modes, consisting of Program,
Picture, Night Scene, Movie, Panorama Assist, 3D image, Digital Filter and User.
Selection of the desired mode is easily done through use of the easy-to-understand
graphic Virtual Mode Dial.
Allows you to take control of a combination of functions to achieve the results
Choose from seven convenient picture modes, including Landscape, Flower, Portrait,
Self-portrait, Surf & Snow, Autumn Color and Sunset.
3) Night Scene:
Ideal for capturing evening and night scenes, this mode also maintains clarity
when shooting subjects with dark backgrounds.
The OptioS can record up to 30 seconds of video with sound at 12 frames per
second, and 320 x 240 recorded pixels. What's more, clips are recorded in AVI
format in order to allow easy playback on PCs.*
for use of the Movie function: PCs running Windows 98/98SE, or Windows 2000
operating systems which came with Direct X8.0 and Windows Media Player pre-installed,
or have QuickTime 3.0 or higher installed. PC running Windows Me or Windows
XP operating systems featuring Windows Media Player or QuickTime3.0 or higher.
Macintosh machines running operating systems, which came with QuickTime 4.0
or higher pre-installed.
5) Panorama Assist:
By simply following the guidance given by the camera and using the software
included with the OptioS, panorama-like pictures can be effectively created
through the vertical or horizontal combination of multiple pictures on a PC.
6) 3D image:
The OptioS adds an additional dimension to digital photography with the exciting
3D image mode. This produces pictures that have a genuine sense of depth and
perspective when seen through the special 3D viewer provided.
7) Digital Filter:
Achieving effects similar to conventional filters, the OptioS allows you to
select black & white and sepia filters for shooting. It also allows selection
of a range of different colors (red, pink, yellow, green, blue and purple) that
can be used to influence the results in myriad ways. For example, purple could
be selected in order to add more mood to a sunset. The OptioS also has a special
slim filter, which allows subjects to appear more slender or broader and offers
a choice of degrees.
Not only does the OptioS offer a range of useful shooting modes, it also allows
a combination of preferred settings to be memorized for easier access.
6. An array of picture modes
With a selection of seven picture modes, the OptioS prepares you for a diverse
range of situations and circumstances. Just make your selection on the LCD monitor
and allow the camera to take automatic control over exposure, focus, and White
Balance to achieve the optimal results.
1) Landscape mode:
Scenes containing greenery and blue skies can be captured with clarity and faithful
2) Flower mode:
Ideal for capturing vivid, colorful shots of flowers.
3) Portrait mode:
Captures natural skin tones.
4) Self-portrait mode:
Allows appropriate composition and provides pleasing results when taking shots
of yourself or joining a friend in the frame.
5) Surf & Snow mode:
Guards against the underexposure of darker elements when other elements in shot
are reflecting bright sunlight. Ideal, for example, when shooting a scene of
a bay on a sunny day, with a mountain in the background.
6) Autumn Color mode:
Captures the stunning reds and golds of autumn leaves.
7) Sunset mode:
Captures the warmth and beauty of sunrise and sunset scenes.
7. Voice recording mode
The OptioS has been specially designed with audio recording capability rivaling
the abilities of standalone audio recording devices. This can be exceptionally
handy for recording important information in meetings and an index can be added
during recording for easy playback.