Pentax Optio WG-1, WG-1 GPS

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Here come Pentax’s 12th generation waterproof digital cameras, the Optio WG-1 and Optio WG-1 GPS, both of which can take underwater images at a depth of 10 meters for up to two hours continuously, can withstand a fall from a height of 1.5 meters and feature a dustproof, coldproof (down to –10°C) and crushproof construction. Both models feature the enhanced Digital Microscope mode with LED subject lighting, which captures even the smallest and closest macro subjects as near as 1cm from the camera.

The WG-1 GPS model is also equipped with a GPS function; the position data of the shooting location and positioning log data are stored along with the image, making it easy to later check the shooting location and link the data with PC-based maps.

If you’re wondering about that Digital Microscope mode, here goes: you get a magnified view on the LCD monitor. Pentax has increased the number of LED Macro Lights to five (from three on their predecessor) and positioned them around the circumference of the lens barrel. The illumination level of each light automatically increases at the moment of shutter release. A Macro Stand is included as a standard accessory. In this mode, image size is fixed at 2-megapixels, 16:9 proportions.

In addition to approximately 14 effective megapixels and a state-of-the-art imaging engine, these models incorporate a new, sophisticated imaging process made possible by the latest “super-resolution” image processing technology, says the company. This process is designed to optimize the resolution of a recorded image section by section to produce a high-resolution image that is sharper, livelier and more true-to-life than before.

The cameras feature an enhanced Face Detection AF & AE function, which instantly and accurately detects up to 32 faces in the image field, then catches them in sharp focus and optimum exposure in just 0.03 seconds. Small Face filter makes the subject’s face appear slightly smaller in a captured image than in reality. Smile Capture mode automatically releases the shutter the instant the subject’s smile is detected, while the Blink Detection function warns the user when the subject’s eyes close at the moment of shutter release. The cameras also feature a Self-Portrait Assist mode. When you point the camera at yourself, this feature informs you whether your is captured safely within the picture frame using the blink of the close-distance warning LED lamp on the camera’s front panel.

Both feature the latest version of the Pet mode, which assists in capturing the faces of dogs and cats, allowing the user to pre-register the faces of up to three favourite pets, making it possible to detect them ahead of other pet faces.

Video is captured at 16:9 high-definition TV proportions (1280 x 720 pixels) at a frame rate of 30 fps. The cameras also offer a variety of movie editing functions: for instance, still images can be extracted from movie clips, or title images can be added to the beginning and/or end of a movie clip.

Both models have a 2.7-inch LCD monitor treated with an AR (Anti-Reflection) coating to cut the glare of external light and minimize reflections.

The cameras come equipped with a 5X optical zoom lens, covering focal lengths (28-140 mm equivalent).

And there triple anti-shake protection: Pixel Track SR, with still images, compensates for camera shake by processing affected images without adding any digital noise; High-Sensitivity anti-shake mode, automatically raise the sensitivity to as high as ISO 6400 in low-lighting conditions; Movie SR mode, using software and narrowing the angle of view.

Other features: carabiner strap; collage function; Ink Rubbing filter (creates a monochromatic, high-contrast image from a recorded image); Auto Picture mode (automatically selects one of 16 shooting modes); 12 digital filters; Digital Wide function (composes an extra-wide-angle image from two images).

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