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Pentax Updates Waterproof, DiVX Cameras

Golden, Colo. — Pentax added a pair of point-and-shoots to its 2007 line up yesterday alongside a pair of high-end lenses for its digital SLRs.

The 10-megapixel Optio A30 sports an updated shake-reduction (SR) system that can now work in movie recording mode as well as with stills.

The system is comprised of three parts — a CCD shifting mechanism, a gyro sensor and control algorithm to electronically correct for blur, and a digital SR mode that boosts the camera’s light sensitivity to ISO 3,200 when shooting 5-megapixel stills.

The camera also features a 3x optical zoom lens, 2.5-inch LCD screen, 15 scene modes, 22MB of internal memory and a “green” button that can be customized to quickly assess a commonly used camera setting.

It also incorporates the company’s face-recognition autofocus and auto-exposure function and captures VGA-resolution DiVX video at 30 fps.

The A30 will ship in March for a suggested $349.

Also due in March is the waterproof Optio W30 featuring a new design that will allow the camera to go twice as deep underwater as its predecessor — up to 10 feet for up to two hours.

The 7-megapixel camera also offers a 3x optical zoom water repellent lens, shake reduction, a 2.5-inch LCD screen, face recognition and a macro mode. The W30 also features 25 scene modes, 21.9MB of internal memory, last image recovery to restore deleted images and in-camera image filters.

It can record VGA video at 30 fps with digital SR. When shooting stills, digital SR can achieve a light sensitivity of ISO 3,200. It will retail for a suggested $349.

The company also added lenses to its smc Pentax-DA* series, including a 16-50mm F2.8 ED AL [IF]SDM wide-angle zoom and a 50-135mm F2.8 ED [IF]SDM telephoto zoom for $899 and $999, respectively.

The lenses are designed to be weather and dust-resistant and offer the company’s Quick-Shift Focus System for switching to manual focus. The lenses will ship in the spring.