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Pentax announces Optio 30 digital camera
(Monday, February 2, 2004 - 10:56 EST)

Pentax USA has today announced its new Optio 30 digital camera.

Featuring a resolution of 3.2 megapixels coupled with a 3x optical zoom lens, the Optio 30 also offers a 1.6" LCD display, 16MB of built-in memory, Secure Digital / MultiMediaCard storage, USB connectivity, 4-mode flash, and power from AA / CR-V3 batteries. Pricing is set at $200, with availability slated for April; the official press release along with a fact sheet on the Optio 30 follow below.

Pentax's Optio 30 digital camera. Courtesy of Eastman Kodak Co., with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins. Click for a bigger picture!

Original Source Press Release:


GOLDEN, Colorado (February 2, 2004) Feeling a little daunted by digital? Help is on the way inside the new PENTAX Optio30 digital camera. This latest PENTAX camera is designed for newcomers with little or no digital photography experience making it a perfect answer for a growing demand for quality, easy-to-use digital.

In addition to 3.2 megapixels, a 3X optical zoom, and the signature, compact dimensions of the PENTAX digital brand, the Optio30 sports a simple, but revolutionary, menu prompt that provides helpful, tutorial messages about frequently used digital camera functions. With a simple touch, this feature will guide new, and old hands, through the camera’s array of digital features. Expertise is the last thing you need to go digital with PENTAX -- just turn on the Optio30 and shoot!

The PENTAX Optio30 makes digital easy and fun! Equipped with PictBridge, a new direct-print standard released by the Camera and Imaging Products Association (CIPA), the Optio30 connects directly to your printer so you may print images without a personal computer! You also may record a favorite shot on the start-up screen and select customized wallpaper choices for the menu screen on the ample 1.6 inch LCD monitor. In addition to a variety of conventional picture modes (Landscape, Nightscene, Nightscene Portrait, Portrait, Surf and Snow, Flower), the innovative Optio30 virtual mode dial features new lifestyle-oriented modes including Party, Cuisine, and Pet.

But, help doesn’t stop there. The Optio30 sports a round-edge design that offers an easy-to-hold, steady grip, and the camera permits you to customize a wide range of camera settings so you may select how you use the camera features as your digital confidence grows. With 16MB of built-in memory, the Optio30 is always ready for a shot even if you leave your larger memory media behind!

For added value, the Optio30 does include an ACDSee™ computer software package that is designed exclusively for PENTAX digital cameras. Valued at $150, the package includes ACDSee™ 5.1, FotoSlate™, FotoCanvas™ and Photostitcher. ACDSee™ digital camera software makes it easy to retrieve, view, manage, print, enhance and share your digital photos.

All this digital value in the Optio30 will retail for $200 and ship to dealers in April 2004. PENTAX U.S.A., Inc. will preview the Optio30 on February 11 at the PMA Sneak Peek Event 2004 and the PEPCOM DigitalFocus events scheduled in advance of the 2004 Photo Marketing Association (PMA) Trade Show from February 12-15 in Las Vegas.

PENTAX U.S.A., Inc. is an innovative leader in the production of digital and film cameras, binoculars, lenses, mobile printers, scanners and internet cameras. 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 U.S.A., INC. is a wholly owned subsidiary of PENTAX CORPORATION.

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Major features of the PENTAX Optio30 include:

3.2 megapixels
The Optio30 features 3.2 effective megapixels for crisp images and quality enlargements.
Optical and digital zoom with macro
The Optio30 offers of 3X optical zoom (equivalent to 38-114mm lens in 35mm format) combined 4X digital zoom for a total 12X zoom. The Optio30 Macro mode allows shots as close as .79 “ from the subject.
Simple menu
A simple menu in the Optio30 offers a split-screen option with the full menu that offers helpful tutorial explanations of frequently used digital photography functions.
Appealing design with compact dimensions
The compact, round-edge Optio 30 design offers a comfortable grip that makes it handy to carry in a pocket or purse.
16MB (approx.) built-in memory
The Optio30 contains approximately 16MB of built-in memory so it’s always ready-to-shoot even if you leave your higher capacity memory media behind.
PictBridge compatibility
The Optio30 supports PictBridge, a new direct-print standard released by CIPA (Camera and Imaging Products Association). Just connect the Optio30 via USB to a printer supporting PictBridge to print recorded images without a PC as well as access direct functions such as resizing, trimming, and digital filters.
Diverse shooting modes
The easy-to-understand virtual mode dial offers 12 shooting mode selections.

  • Program mode automatically sets the optimal shutter speed, aperture, and focus for the subject at hand.
  • Landscape mode accents nature’s green and blue hues and extends sharpness as far as the horizon.
  • Night scene mode slows the Optio30 shutter speed to capture greater detail in low light conditions.
  • Nighttime portrait mode ensures quality shots of people at night without sacrificing exposure of the background.
  • Portrait mode captures natural looking skin tones with more flattering results.
  • Surf & Snow mode helps preserve details throughout the frame, even settings with sun reflection on water or snow.
  • Flower mode automatically sets the Optio30 in Macro mode for glorious detail of nature’s work.
  • Party mode accounts for room size and available light to capture subjects at special events.
  • Cuisine helps capture special textures and colors and master the art of food photography.
  • Pet mode helps you capture whites and black tones and the natural glow common to family pets.

Customized functions
The Optio30 start-up screen may be customized to display a favorite image of your choice, and one of six preset images can be selected for use as wallpaper for each of the menu screens.
The Optio30 records soundless movie files up to the available capacity of the selected recording media and offers a wide range of related choices — from 320 x 240 to 160 x 120 pixels and full-color, black & white and sepia shooting options. Movie files are also recorded in MOV format to enable easy playback on PC.
*System requirements: PCs running Windows 98/98SE, or Windows 2000 operating systems which came with DirectX 8.0 or higher and Windows Media Player pre-installed. PCs running Windows Me or Windows XP operating systems featuring Windows Media Player or QuickTime 3.0 or higher. Macintosh machines running operating systems which came with QuickTime 4.0 or higher pre-installed.
Panorama Assist mode
Panorama Assist mode is ideal for expansive scenery. Take multiple shots of your subject in vertical or horizontal format, and then align and combine them using the user-friendly software provided*.
* ACD photostitcher software is compatible with Windows systems only.
Digital filters for fun and creative results
Optio30 allows you to apply nine filter choices to existing shots: black and white, sepia, red, pink, purple, blue, green, yellow and brightness so may enhance sunset shades with a purple filter, for example, or place special emphasis on another color of your choice and add brightness.
Optio30 includes an ACDSee for PENTAX software package for easy graphic conversion, album creation, and much more.
USB mass storage class compatibility*
USB connectivity allows multiple shots to be swiftly and simply imported into common PC applications — opening up an exciting world of imaging versatility that lets you do so much more with your shots.
*System requirements: No driver software is required for PCs running Windows 2000, Windows Me, Windows XP Home Edition/Professional or MAC OS 9.0 or later with a built-in USB port.
Built-in auto flash
The Optio30 features a flash that can be set to fire automatically in low-light conditions. For greater control, Optio30 offers Flash-on, Flash-off, and slow-shutter sync modes (for use in combination with Night scene, Nighttime portrait, and Party modes) and there’s also the advantage of a red-eye reduction function.*
*This feature does not eliminate “red eyes” in all instances.
High-precision LCD monitor
The 1.6-inch TFT LCD monitor makes it easy to compose shots or view them prior to printing, allowing you to recompose and shoot again while you’re near the subject.
Optical viewfinder
An optical viewfinder allows you to conserve power by switching off the LCD monitor.
Nine image/Zoom display
The Optio30 makes it easy to search for a shot that’s already recorded with Nine-image display that lets you scan through all images in minimal time. When you find the shot you’re looking for, the camera also offers 8X magnification, enabling you to check images up close for details and focusing.
The self-timer is ideal for self-portraits and when you join a group shot. Release the shutter in either two or ten seconds or minimize camera shake when taking long exposures.
Continuous shooting
An extended press of the shutter is all it takes to activate continuous shooting. This allows fast-moving action to be captured frame by frame.
4-in-1 shooting
4-in-1 shooting takes four consecutive shots in one frame with just a single press of the shutter release button. This innovative feature makes it easy to study the movement of a subject.
Interval shooting
Interval shooting mode shoots a set of sequential frames for playback together as a short film. It offers a selection of X2, X5, X10, X20, X50, or X100 recording speeds and create effects such as clouds rushing across the sky.
Macro shooting and Infinity-landscape modes
Selection of Macro mode allows you to compose from as close as just .79” from the subject, while Infinity-landscape captures the sense of space when shooting stunning scenery and optimal focus when shooting through windows.
Manual focusing
With the handy LCD monitor, manual focus is easy and enjoyable by the enlargement of the central area of the LCD, which helps you recognize the moment when your subject is at its sharpest.
Choice of autofocus
The Optio30 offers Spot AF and 5-point AF. Spot AF provides you with the freedom to choose the area of key focus anywhere within the frame, while 5-point AF allows simultaneous focus on separate elements even when shooting from a distance. 5-point AF offers highlighted focus area that lets you know exactly where the sharpest points are located.
Histogram display
The detailed histogram function is extremely handy during both playback and shooting, allowing you to check the range of light levels with greater accuracy.
Metering options
A choice of Spot metering, Multi-segment metering, and Center-weighted metering give you greater control over the way exposure is determined.
ISO settings
Light sensitivity is exceptionally easy to adjust. Select ISO50 for the clearest results with minimal noise, or opt for ISO100 or 200 depending on your aims and circumstances.
Exposure compensation
The Optio30 enables exposure compensation across a range of +2EV in steps of 1/3EV.
Settings for sharpness, saturation and contrast
The Optio30 even has a range of settings that allow you to take control over sharpness, saturation, and contrast, with three grades for each. Such extended capability is ideal for the photographer who wishes to exercise greater control over the final outcome.
Image protection
Digital photography presents the risk of deleting shots you want to keep, but the Optio30 features a function that protects shots from accidental deletion.
Mode memory function
Mode memory allows you to save a combination of settings you like and return to them automatically when the power is next switched on.
DPOF print convenience
When used in combination with DPOF-compatible printers, the Optio30 gives you a greater degree of control over the date function and the number of prints*.
*Some printers may not support the above functions. Please consult the supplier of your printer for more information.
Exif Print (Exif2.2) and PRINT Image Matching II* compatibility
Exif Print and PRINT Image Matching II compatibility establishes a stronger link between the camera and printer for greater control.
*This product supports PRINT Image Matching II. When used in combination, PRINT Image Matching II enabled digital still cameras, printers, and software help photographers to produce images more faithful to their intentions.
Copyright 2001 Seiko Epson Corporation. All Rights Reserved. PRINT Image Matching is a trademark of Seiko Epson Corporation. The PRINT Image Matching logo is a trademark of Seiko Epson Corporation.
SD memory card / MultiMediaCard
With SD memory card and MultimediaCard compatibility, the Optio30 is able to store a large amount of images while retaining high-level accuracy. Images may be exported or imported between the built-in memory and the SD memory card or MultimediaCard, so you may decide which images you want to store, and where.
Resize function
A handy resize function allows you to alter the data size and quality of stored images. Resized files can even be set to overwrite the original image, allowing you to free up more memory space without having to discard a shot.
Trimming function
Excellent composition doesn’t have to be confined to the time of shooting. Indeed with the convenient Trimming function, images can be cropped at any time and selected parts can be stored as individual new files.
Power sources
The Optio30 can be powered by two widely available AA alkaline batteries. It can also be operated with a Nickel Hydride battery, a rechargeable lithium-ion battery, a CR-V3 battery and an optionally available AC adapter.
Operation in 8 languages
All menus and messages may be displayed in English, French, German, Spanish, Italian, Russian, Chinese or Japanese, making the Optio30 accessible for use by people around the world.
AC adapter
An optional AC adapter for extended use of the Optio30 is available for purchase.

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