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Pentax Optio S4 4 to 5 Megapixel
Sporting the tiny dimensions and light weight of its predecessor, the Optio S4 has a 4.23 effective megapixel resolution, a 3X zoom lens and a variety of features.
Submitted by awkwards a Intermediate
Date Reviewed: April 24, 2004
Strengths: * TINY size fits in any pocket, even top shirt pocket
* Solid construction with possible exception of battery door
* Vast array of features, shooting modes, and controls.
* Excellent outdoor shots.
* Stunning macro mode.
Weaknesses: * Some softening in corners of the images.
* This camera is challenged by mid-light situations and complex subjects for focus (i.e., trees from 10 ft away).
* Teeny 4-way control can be tricky if you're in a hurry
* The lens cover gets stuck half-way from time to time--I think it may be vulnerable to dust or even a very tiny impact
Great performance and features in an ultra-compact design.
I highly recommend this camera for those who have a larger, higher-end camera and want a pocket camera that can be taken anywhere. This is also a good camera for families who want a single, easy-to-use camera with plenty of features and good photo quality.
I write that photo quality is "good," but it is not on par with cameras featuring larger, higher-quality lenses. It stacks up quite favorably against samples I've looked at from similar cameras.
Overall, this camera's tiny size, great features, good photo quality, and low price make it an outstanding value.
I also recommend:
* At least one spare battery (Pentax part number D-L18)
* The Pentax-manufactured leather case (part number PTX-L40; although it fits great, an Altoids tin tends to wear on the corners of the camera!)
Price Paid: $300.00
Purchased At: walmart.com
Similar Products Used: Canon Powershot SD100, Penax Optio S40, Minolta Dimage F100
Submitted by hl1lxp a Intermediate
Date Reviewed: February 2, 2004
Strengths: - Smallest size and lightest weight
- Fairly nice & useful video mode
Weaknesses: - Noisy especially at ISO200
- Hard to find half-shutter point
- Weak(looks!) battery & memory cap
Ultra compact size & weight makes it a great camera for everyday carry-around. With useful video, voice recording, and even alarm clock features, I bet this cutie is great for business travel.
Yeap, this is noisy in low light and produces just so-so images, but think of your primary purpose when you try this kind of camera. Isn't that portability?
Price Paid: $335.00
Purchased At: Seoul, Korea
Similar Products Used: - Panasonic LC20
- Fuji S2 Pro & lots of film cameras
Submitted by Pete a Casual
Date Reviewed: December 1, 2003
Strengths: - Size & weight
- Battery Meter on display
- Excellent "frame to frame" review of photo
- Fast start up and shut down time
- Good menu... fairly easy to make adjustments as you are shooting
- LCD screen: clear, btight... seems pretty close to what the pic will look like when printed
- Build quality
Weaknesses: - Prone to red eye (common for small P&S cameras where the flash is so close to the lens)
- Dark corners, especially bottom right and left
- Image softness... corners and edges
- Not so good in low light... too dark
- LCD panel seems to do a lot of "wavering"
- Auto exposure in high contrast (sun & shadows)... bright areas over exosed; shadows under exposed
Overall a great camera if size is the most important attribute you are looking for. Picture quality is the trade off: I compared this to a Canon S400... took a few dozen pics with each at the same time... printed on Noristu 400... The Canon won in a side-by-side comparison in all except 1 set: better color, edge sharpness, overall exposure. The Optio build quality is high... controls seem to be good for such a small package. You can really put this in your pocket and forget it's there.
Price Paid: $365.00
Purchased At: B&H Photo
Similar Products Used: Canon Digital S100 & S400
Canon Elan 7
Submitted by Josh Levine a Casual
Date Reviewed: November 27, 2003
Strengths: compact. tons of features and shooting modes.
great price for 4-megapixel.
Weaknesses: less-than-perfect shots at night, alternate modes are a chore to figure out unless you want to spend several hours with the manual.
great camera. i bought it for my wedding and honeymoon because i wanted something small that i could take everywhere with me. it's so handy that i carried it the whole time and took tons of photos.
the photo quality at night wasn't the best, and wasn't as good as my old yashica with the zeiss lens, but it was good enough.
Price Paid: $349.00
Purchased At: ibuydigital
Similar Products Used: toshiba, tons of 35mm cameras.
Submitted by phdezra a Intermediate from New York
Date Reviewed: November 24, 2003
Strengths: - Small and lightweight
- Inexpensive 4 MP camera
- Easy to use
- Decent quality images
Weaknesses: - Compact lens not as 'sharp' as prosume digicams
- Lacks advance controls
- Buttons a bit too small
This camera is as small as all the ads say it is. Easily fits in my jacket pocket or pants pocket. I have been carrying it around for a few days now, and it weighs as much as my tiny Nokia cell phone (or less!).
Overall, the images are excellent and can easily be printed up to 8x10. There is a very small learning curve, as the user modes are all selectable on the LCD (versus a wheel-knob on other cameras that are larger).
Price Paid: $349.00
Purchased At: BuyDig.com
Similar Products Used: Minolta Dimage X
Related Optio S4 Forum Posts
I have been comparing these three cameras online and reading reviews, and I think I have narrowed it down to just the s4 and s40, but from there I cant decide. Are they basically the same thing except one has a lithium battery and the other uses AA batts? I cannot seem to find many reviews on the ... Read More »
Hey everyone.... I'm looking to buy either a Pentax Optio S4 3.2 or a Canon SD 110 3.2 soon, but I don't know which one is better and am looking for peoples opinion on the matter. They are both about the same price, and they are both very small, which is important to me. Also, they both offer vid ... Read More »
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