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Pentax's Optio M20 digital camera. Courtesy of Pentax, with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins. Pentax announces Optio M20
By Michael R. Tomkins, The Imaging Resource
(Tuesday, August 22, 2006 - 00:24 EDT)

Pentax USA has today unveiled the Optio M20, the second in the company's M-series digital camera lineup.

The Pentax Optio M20 couples a 1/2.5" seven megapixel CCD imager, Pentax-branded 3x optical zoom lens and 2.5" LCD display with 115,000 pixels - but no optical viewfinder - in a compact body with a gently curved handgrip that should make the camera a little easier to hold steady, while remaining pocket-friendly. The Pentax M20, like the M10 before it, is designed for simplicity and affordability first and foremost, and has a list price of just $200. That's $30 less than the previous model, even though additions include a greater shutter speed range, ISO sensitivity to 1600 (where the M10 was limited to ISO 400), and a 30 fps VGA movie mode.

Other features of the Pentax M20 include 22MB of built-in storage memory, and an SD card slot with support for the new SDHC (Secure Digital High Capacity) standard, which extends the maximum flash card capacity to a theoretical 32GB (4GB cards being the largest at the time of this writing), with sustained transfer rates of up to six megabytes per second. There's also NTSC / PAL video and USB 1.1 data connectivity (rather slower than the USB 2.0 High-Speed connections offered on many cameras these days), as well as a built-in flash and a macro mode that allows focusing as close as 5 centimeters. Power comed courtesy of two AA batteries - either alkaline disposable (included), or NiMH rechargeable (optional). The Pentax M20 goes on sale from September 2006.

Pentax Optio M20
Pentax's Optio <20 digital camera. Courtesy of Pentax, with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins. Click for a bigger picture!
General
Camera Type Compact
Manufacturer Pentax
Model Number M20
Dimensions 3.5 x 2.4 x 1.0"
89.0 x 60.0 x 25.0mm
Weight 165.0 g
5.8 oz
Planned Price $200.00
Planned Availability Sep 2006
Image Capture
Sensor Type 1/2.5" CCD
7.18 megapixels (total)
7.00 megapixels (effective)
Filter Type RGBG
Aspect Ratio 4:3
Image Dimensions 3072 x 2304 (7.1 megapixels)
2560 x 1920 (4.9 megapixels)
2304 x 1728 (4.0 megapixels)
2048 x 1536 (3.1 megapixels)
1600 x 1200 (1.9 megapixels)
1024 x 768 (0.8 megapixels)
640 x 480 (0.3 megapixels)
Image Quality 3 levels
Image Preview / Review
Viewfinder No
LCD 2.5", 115,000 pixels
100% field of view
Playback Zoom 8.0x max
Lens
Lens Type PENTAX power zoom
3x optical zoom
Image Stabilization No
Focal Length 6.3 - 18.9mm (actual)
38 - 114mm (35mm equivalent)
Aperture Range f/3.1 (wide) / f/5.9 (tele) - ???
Focusing System 9-point Contrast Detection w/ spot and tracking AF modes
Focusing Range Normal: 16" - infinity (40 cm - infinity)
Macro: 2.0" - 41" (5 cm - 100 cm)
Exposure
ISO Sensitivity Auto, 64, 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600* (blur reduction mode)
Shutter Speed 4 - 1/2000 second
Exposure Modes Program
Metering Modes TTL multi-segment
Exposure Compensation +/- 2.0EV in 1/3EV increments
White Balance Image Sensor - Auto, Daylight, Shade, Tungsten light, Fluorescent light
Internal Flash Modes: Auto, Flash-off, Flash-on, Red-eye reduction
Range: Wide: 13 ft (4m); Tele: 8.2 ft (2.5m)
Creative
Scene Modes Night scene, Landscape, Flower, Portrait, Surf & Snow, Sport, Kids, Pet, Blur Reduction, Food, Frame
Digital Zoom 4x
Time Lapse No
Movie Format MOV (QuickTime MotionJPEG) with audio
640x480 and 320x240
Max. frame-rate: 30 frames per second
Storage
Recording Medium SD/MMC, Built-in
File System Complies with Design Rule for Camera File System (DCF)
File Format JPEG (Exif 2.2)
Connectivity
Video Yes, NTSC / PAL switchable
Computer USB 1.1
Other DC In
Power
Battery Type Alkaline disposable, NiMH rechargeable
Battery Form Factor 2 x AA
Product Bundle
Battery / Charger 2 x AA Alkaline disposable battery
Flash Memory 22.0MB built-in memory
Other
Digital Print Order Format (DPOF) compliant Yes
PictBridge Compliant Yes
Internal Microphone Yes
Tripod Mount Yes
More Photos
Pentax's Optio <20 digital camera. Courtesy of Pentax, with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins. Click for a bigger picture!
Pentax's Optio <20 digital camera. Courtesy of Pentax, with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins. Click for a bigger picture!
 

Original Source Press Release:

PENTAX UPGRADES TWO POPULAR COMPACT DIGITAL MODELS

GOLDEN, CO. (August 21, 2006)…PENTAX Imaging Company has announced significant upgrades to two popular PENTAX compact digital camera lines. The latest model in the PENTAX Optio A series is the Optio A20 now featuring 10.0 effective megapixels and three anti-shake functions including Shake Reduction, Blur Reduction High ISO mode, and a Movie Anti-shake all designed to improve image quality.

PENTAX also announced the latest model in the Optio M series, a compact, affordable digital camera now offering 7.0 effective megapixels plus a wide range of basic features including extended AA battery life that makes the camera an ideal travel companion. This new model also features the new PENTAX High ISO Blur Reduction mode for sharper images without camera shake or subject blurring.
The Optio A20 will ship in October 2006 for under US $350.00, while the Optio M20 will ship in September 2006 for US $200.00.

PENTAX Imaging Company is an innovative leader in the production of digital SLR and compact cameras, scopes, eyepieces, binoculars, lenses, mobile printers and scanners. For more than 80 years, PENTAX technology has developed durable, reliable products that meet the needs of consumers and businesses. With headquarters in Golden, Colorado, PENTAX Imaging Company is a division of PENTAX of America, Inc.

# # #

Visit all of our product websites:
www.pentaximaging.com
www.pentaxslr.com
www.h20camera.com
www.pentaxsportoptics.com

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