PENTAX Q-S1 mixes things up with over 40 colour combinations

Q-S1

Why go black or grey? With PENTAX there’s no need to follow the old colourless rules of handheld camera design – with over 40 different colour combinations, your camera can be as colourful as its photos.

There are 5 different body colours – Black, Gunmetal, Pure White, Champagne Gold, and Bright Silver. Then you can combine with varied grip colours in Charcoal Black, Cream, Carmine Red, Canary Yellow, Khaki Green, Royal Blue, Burgundy and Pale Pink. When you remember you can also choose a different colour for your lens, you realise there are 40 different colour combinations – the most vivid looking cameras ever made are yours for the taking.

So what’s the deal with the cameras most important function? As a camera PENTAX Q-S1 has been equipped with 12.4 megapixels, A1/1.1-inch back-illuminated CMOS sensor, a sensitivity range of ISO 100-12800 and ultrasonic vibrating ‘DRII’ sensor cleaner. The latter function is great if you do not want to see dust from your lens in your pictures – which is about true for everyone. When you consider all this functionality and remember that it is a very compact, easy to carry camera the Q-S1 quickly becomes a very attractive option – and that’s not just in terms of its colourful appearances.

PENTAXGREEN
Pentax Q-S1 body and a standard lens in Champagne Gold with a Khaki Green grip

The screen at the back is 3.0 inch LCD wide-angle back at the front you get a built-in retractable P-TTL flash. All the following optional lenses are available on the PENTAX Q-S1:

PENTAX 01 Standard PRIME 8.5mm F1.9 AL [IF]
PENTAX 02 Standard ZOOM 5-15mm F2.8-4.5
PENTAX 03 Fish-Eye 3.2mm F5.6
PENTAX 04 Toy Lens Wide 6.3mm F7.1
PENTAX 05 Toy Lens Telephoto 18mm F8
PENTAX 06 Telephoto Zoom 15-45mm F2.8
PENTAX 07 Mount Shield Lens
PENTAX 08 Wide Zoom 3.8-5.9mm F3.7-4
Adapter Q for K-mount Lenses

One drawback of the camera, as pointed out by Cnet, is the camera’s lack of wireless functionality: “The camera still doesn’t have built-in Wi-Fi, though it still supports Eye-Fi”. Eye-Fi requires the purchase of a small SD-card like attachment for the camera and allows it to communicate wirelessly with computers and storage devices, so the camera can share files without the need for it to be plugged in via USB. While this can be useful for some, it is a shame that wi-fi functionality has not been included, as Eye-Fi requires paying for the attachment, and many similar top-of-the-line cameras have Wi-Fi built in.

On the plus side the camera also includes autofocus while recording videos which allows the camera to produce much higher-quality video with less blur. The camera also includes the ability to mount a K lenses adapter, so the budding photographer can chop and change lenses quickly on-the-fly.

PENTAXCOLOURS
Pentax Q-S1 body’s from left to right in Gunmetal, Champagne Gold, Pure White and Black

You can pre-order the camera at RICOCH Imagine UK for £299.99 (body only) and up to £549.99 for the camera with a 5-15mm lens and a 15-45mm lens included. Shipping will start from the 28th of August 2014.

For more details visit RICOCH Imagine UK ltd.

Pentax K-01: Interchangeable lens camera

The latest interchangeable lens camera from Pentax is certainly a bit of a head-turner. The black-and-yellow body certainly sets it apart from the usual Pentax design – and that’s all down to the vision of Australian industrial designer Marc Newson.

Pentax-K-01

It has a 16-megapixel sensor and also offers support for K-mount lenses – which makes it a suitable option for existing Pentax owners who are looking for something more portable than their existing DSLR. As well as its 16-megapixel sensor, the K-01 also features high-speed burst shooting, extra wide sensitivity range with a top sensitivity of ISO 25600 and Full HD video recording.

Along with the K-01, Pentax has also announced the world’s thinnest interchangeable lens, the smc PENTAX-DA 40mm F2.8 XS unifocal. The K-01 has been designed with a contemporary yet timeless design. Bright colours are used on two key buttons for instant recognition: red for the video recording button, and green for the functional green button. The body is made from machined aluminium and natural rubber, making it both tactile and durable.

The mode dial and the power switch are made of an aluminium alloy, while the memory card slot and connectors on the easy-to-hold grip are covered with protective rubber. Newson has made his stamp on the product logo, the camera strap and even on the start-up screen. The optical viewfinder and quick-return mirror were eliminated during the design process to allow more freedom in the design of the camera body.

The PENTAX K-01 comes in three colourways:  Black with black grip, Black with yellow grip, and silver with black grip. It will be available from the end of March 2012, priced £629.99 (body only); £679.99 (K-01 + 40mm DA XS lens); £679.99 (K-01 + DAL 18-55mm lens) and £799.99 (K-01 + DAL 18-55mm lens + DAL 50-200mm lens).

The Pentax in your pocket: the Optio S1

The Pentax Optio S1 not only boasts a super-slim body, but also manages to pack in a lot of modes for its £119.19 pricetag. Cameras at this level are considered entry-level – and yet you’re getting a 5x optical zoom lens and a 14 megapixel sensor. Plus, there’s the option to record high-quality HD video, which records at 30fps, and a 2.7in LCD screen.

Pentax-Optio-S1

For newbies, there are plenty of shooting modes to choose from – so you should be able to let the camera do all the work for you – fantastic if you want to get good results in a multitude of conditions, without actually thinking about it!

There are Smile Capture and Face Detection modes, along with the usual Landscape, Night Scene, Pets and so on, along with Natural Skin Tone, Food, Candlelight, Party, Text, Miniature Filter and HD.

There are opportunities for in-camera editing – red-eye compensation, resizing, cropping, plus filters for black and white, sepia, retro, toy camera and lots more.

If you’re not sure how steady your hand is, the good news is there’s a Shake Reduction system, plus memory card support for SD/SDHC and SDXC.

The battery should last for about 180 shots, so if you’re going out for the day, it might be worth carrying a spare so that you don’t miss out on those memorable images.

Other cameras around the same price point include the Nikon Coolpix S3100, which had a lukewarm reception from many reviewers and the Canon PowerShot A3200 IS, which fared better on the review front. Your choice may come down to whether you have a preference to a certain camera manufacturer, and what you are familiar with, but if you’re looking for a compact, pocket-friendly, good looking snapper, for fuss-free photography, you could do worse than the Pentax Option S1

The camera comes in chrome or black. For more details head to www.pentax.co.uk

Photokina roundup

The world’s biggest trade fair for the photographic and imaging industry has just finished in Cologne. So what’s some of the big news to come out of it?

Samsung-NX100

One of the surprises was Fujifilm’s concept high-quality compact camera – the X100. No news about it had been leaked beforehand, so there was a lot of interest – despite the fact it was still missing many of its vital parts! A retro design, analogue controls and a hybrid opto-electronic viewfinder (translation: it offers the best of both worlds by allowing users to instantly switch between a bright, high-quality optical viewfinder and an electronic viewfinder with full shooting data) were tempting, even considering the fact that it has a fixed mount, fixed focal length lens (the 23mm f/2 lens has been optimised with the 12.3MP APS-C sized CMOS sensor for high-quality images) and comes with a hefty price tag of £900.
More over here.

Compact interchangeable-lens cameras only came onto the scene two years ago with the Panasonic G1, but are making great strides. Witness the Panasonic GH2, which has taken AF performance up a gear to compete with the best SLRs. This Micro Four Thirds camera shoots at 16 megapixels with a wider sensitivity range of ISO 160 to 12,800 and a faster, 23-point autofocusing system. You’ll also get 5FPS burst shooting and 1080i video at 60 frames per second instead of 30.
Read more here.

Samsung, meanwhile, showed off its Samsung NX100 with its intuitive i-Function kit lens. What’s that, you ask? Well so did I. Apparently, the i-Function button on the lens allows you to control the lens; scrolling through manual settings, such as shutter speed, aperture, EV, WB, and ISO. You can then use the focus ring to change parameters for each setting. The NX100 also boasts the same 14.6 megapixel sensor and 3-inch AMOLED screen as the NX10. The Samsung NX100 will come in black, white and brown and will cost £449.99 with the 20-50mm kit lens. You will also be able to buy a compact zoom 20-50mm F3.5-5.6 lens and an Electronic Viewfinder Flash and GPS tracker, while a 20mm f/2.8 wide angle Pancake lens, Macro lens and 18-200mm f/3.5-6.3 Super Zoom lens will be available next year.

The camera companies also recognise that photographers want tougher, more weather-resistant cameras for their shots. Step forward the Pentax K-5, the Nikon D7000 and the Olympus E-5, all magnesium-alloy cameras that have environmental seals that allow their owners to use them in bad weather (so that means August in the UK).

Casio chose a different tack, meanwhile, with its Casio EX-H20G, which offers a geo-photography facility. This means that as well as offering 14-megapixel images, the Casio compact is able to geo-tag your images – even if you’re underground or indoors. The locations of your pictures are captured on the Casio’s mapping software and shown on its 3inch LED screen. It also has a database of 10,000 tourist attractions, which the camera can recognise and tag – it will even alert you when you’re near one of them. You can then share your picture with family and friends on Picasa.

Okay, that’s the fun stuff for holiday snappers, but your more serious, medium-format fans have not been left out. Hasselblad’s 60-megapixel H4D-60 camera not good enough for you? Never fear, a 20-megapixel model is due out in the early part of next year. Mind you, it’s not all good news – each image will take 30 seconds to capture, so is hardly going to be any good for anything that moves (or breathes). But professional photographers who take glossy shots of watches, cars and the like will no doubt be intrigued.

Speaking of pricey cameras, Pentax debuted its interchangeable lens, medium-format digital SLR camera, the 645D. With its huge image sensor (44x33mm), the 645D takes shots at up to 40 megapixels, but it’s also pretty hefty, as its price tag – a whopping £9,999.99 with a 55mm SDM 645 lens.

Of course. It’s not just all about cameras. People who take great pictures, need great printers too, which is why Epson chose Photokina to launch its Stylus Pro 4900. Designed for the small office or studio producing photographic and fine art prints, the compact, 17inch production printer can produce 98 per cent of all PANTONE colours on a wide range of media up to 1.5mm thick. It can switch automatically between photo and matte black inks
Available from November at £2,295

More details here