Review posted for Pentax Optio 555|
(Monday, December 8, 2003 - 12:53 EST)
Pentax has been carving out a niche for themselves in the compact-yet-full-featured camera arena, and the Optio 555 is one of their latest efforts.
Having tested it, I found a lot to like, including good color (a little undersaturated for my tastes on some subjects, but the optional color-saturation adjustment compensates nicely), flexible exposure options ranging from fully automatic for novices to fully manual for advanced users, and an excellent 5x optical zoom lens that's unusually sharp from corner to corner. (I've found that longer-ratio zooms tend to suffer inordinately from softness in the corners, but the lens on the 555 does better in this respect than most.) Battery life is also quite good.
The one fly in the ointment is that the 555's shutter response is rather sluggish, well on the slow side of normal. (Although prefocus shutter lag is quite good.) All in all, an excellent choice for a compact digicam with a full set of features. (Chalk up another Dave's Pick for Pentax...) Check it out!