Pentax Optio Z10 Performance

Timing and Performance

The Optio Z10's performance ranges from average to a little slow.


Power on
to first shot

2.5 seconds

Time it takes for LCD to turn on and lens to deploy.


0.1 second

How long it takes to retract lens.

Buffer clearing time

5 seconds
(2 seconds buffer clearing in LF JPEG)

Worst case buffer clearing time. -- This is the delay after a set of shots before you can remove the card. Some cameras won't retract their lenses and shut down until the buffer is cleared.

Start-up time is fair considering its 7x optical zoom lens, but shutdown is very quick.

Mode switching

Play to Record,
first shot

0.8 second

Time until first shot is captured.

Record to play

1.0 second

Time to display a large/fine file immediately after capture.

recorded image

0.6 second

Time to display a large/fine file already on the memory card.

Mode switching times are a little faster than average.

Shutter response (Lag Time)

Full Autofocus Wide

0.722 second

Time from fully pressing shutter button to image capture, zoom lens at wide angle position.

Full Autofocus Tele

0.768 second

Time from fully pressing shutter button to image capture, zoom lens at telephoto position.


0.151 second

Time to capture, after half-pressing and holding shutter button.

Continuous AF
0.489 second
This mode usually shows no speed increase with our static subject; we have no way to measure performance with moving subjects.
Manual focus
0.463 second
For most cameras, shutter lag is less in manual focus than autofocus, but usually not as fast as when the camera is "prefocused".

Shutter response is moderate at both wide angle and telephoto, at 0.72 and 0.77 second respectively. "Prefocusing" the camera by half-pressing and holding down the shutter button before the final exposure results in a quick lag time of only 0.151 second. (Not the quickest on the market, but still fairly fast.)

Cycle time (shot to shot)
Single Shot mode
Large Fine JPEG
2.05 seconds

Time per shot, averaged over buffer capacity of 3 shots. Buffer takes 3 seconds to clear. Speed drops to 2.73 second after buffer has filled.

Single Shot mode
640x480 JPEG

2.41 seconds

Time per shot, averaged over 20 shots.

Early shutter


Some cameras snap another shot if you release and press the shutter too quickly in Single Shot mode, making "No" the preferred answer.

Continuous mode
Large Fine JPEG

2.03 seconds (0.49 frames per second);
20+ frames total;
2 seconds to clear

Time per shot, averaged over buffer length or 20 shots, whichever came first.

Continuous mode
640x480 JPEG

0.83 second (1.20 frames per second);
20+ frames total;
5 seconds to clear

Time per shot, averaged over buffer length or 20 shots, whichever came first.

Flash recycling

4.69 seconds

Flash at maximum output.

*Note: Buffer clearing times measured with a SanDisk Extreme III 133x SD memory card. Slower cards will produce correspondingly slower clearing times. Slow cards may also limit length of bursts in continuous mode.

Shot-to-shot cycle times are a little sluggish, at about 2.05 seconds for large/fine JPEGs, and the camera only captures 3 frames this quickly before having to stop and clear the buffer. Continuous mode is also slow, at only 0.49 frames-per-second, but the camera can capture over 20 large/fine JPEG frames at this average rate. Decreasing the resolution speeds it up to 1.20 frames per second, for over 20 frames. The flash takes 4.69 seconds to recharge after a full-power shot, which is pretty good.

Download speed

Windows Computer, USB 2.0

1,434 KBytes/sec

Typical Values:
Less than 600=USB 1.1;
600-769=USB 2.0 Low;
Above 770=USB 2.0 High

Connected to a computer or printer with USB 2.0, download speeds are pretty good.

Bottom line, the Optio Z10 is responsive enough to handle most family photo opportunities, though it may not keep up with speedier subjects.

Battery and Storage Capacity

Below average battery life for a lithium-ion design.

Operating Mode Number of Shots
Lithium-ion Rechargeable Battery,
(CIPA standard)

The Pentax Optio Z10 uses a custom rechargeable lithium-ion battery for power, and ships with a charger. Battery life is a little less than average, we recommend you pick up a spare battery and keep it freshly charged and on-hand for extended outings.

The table above shows the number of shots the camera is capable of (on either a fresh set of disposable batteries or a fully-charged rechargeable battery as appropriate), based on CIPA battery-life and/or manufacturer standard test conditions.

(Interested readers can find an English translation of the CIPA DC-002 standards document here. (180K PDF document))

The Pentax Optio Z10 accepts SDHC/SD/MMC memory cards, and includes about 52MB of internal memory.

Image Capacity with
52MB Internal Memory
Fine Normal Basic
3,264 x 2,448
File Size
4.1 MB
2.1 MB
1.4 MB
2,592 x 1,944
File Size
2.6 MB
1.4 MB
942 KB
2,304 x 1,728
File Size
2.1 MB
1.0 MB
727 KB
2,048 x 1,536
File Size
1.7 MB
843 KB
579 KB
1,600 x 1,200
File Size
1.1 MB
628 KB
430 KB
1,024 x 768
File Size
529 KB
314 KB
248 KB
640 x 480
File Size
264 KB
182 KB
132 KB

We strongly recommend buying a large capacity SDHC or SD memory card at least a 1GB card, preferably a 2 or 4GB one, to give yourself extra space for extended outings and video. (Check the shopping link above, cards are really cheap these days, so no reason to skimp.)


Buy the Pentax Z10

Your purchases support this site

Buy the Pentax Z10

Editor's Picks