updated 07:30 pm EDT, Thu May 22, 2008
Just ahead of Memorial Day weekend (in the US), Pentax tonight released the Optio W60. Where other cameras need special shells underwater, the W60 is explicitly designed to be waterproof from the outset and includes watertight joints that extend to the lens: as the optics never protrude from the body, no room exists for water to seep in, the company boasts. The resulting adjustments lead to a camera that not only operates at up to 13 feet deep but is also dustproof and survives freezing temperatures as low as 14 Fahrenheit.
The camera's creator also vows few compromises in the camera itself, with a 10-megapixel sensor, a 5X optical zoom factor, and full-speed video recording at 720p. Image stabilization is confined to sensitivity adjustment but can ramp up to the W60's ISO 6400 limit. Software touches include face and smile detection as well as a special underwater movie mode.
Shipments start in July, when the camera ships in both blue and silver bodies for $330.