Pentax intros X5 superzoom camera with 26x lens, tiltable LCD

We'd been worrying that Pentax would be left out of the flurry of new cameras in the run-up to Photokina. With the new X-5, there's reason to relax. The new shooter sits at the higher end of the by-the-numbers superzoom crowd, centering most of its energy on a 26x, 22-580mm equivalent lens as well as a backside-illuminated CMOS sensor that should keep the resulting 16-megapixel photos and 1080p videos relatively clean. Most of the effort to stand out from the pack, however slightly, involves previewing pictures rather than capturing them -- an electronic viewfinder and a tilting, 3-inch LCD will help perfect those macros and overhead concert shots. The X-5 won't shake the foundations of personal photography, especially not when it's using AA batteries for power, but hitting all those right notes at a $280 price could persuade more than a few of us to take the plunge after the September launch.

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Pentax X-5


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PENTAX INTRODUCES NEW X-5 DIGITAL CAMERA

Versatile 16 megapixel BSI CMOS point-and-shoot digital camera features a powerful 26X super-telephoto zoom lens as well as convenient tiltable LCD monitor

Denver, CO (August 22, 2012) – PENTAX RICOH IMAGING AMERICAS CORPORATION today announced the introduction of its PENTAX X-5 digital camera, an ideal choice for photographers who want to easily capture beautiful, high-quality images of a wide variety of subjects and scenes. Featuring a powerful high-magnification optical 26X super-telephoto zoom lens, the new PENTAX X-5 provides photographers with a focal length of 4mm-104mm (22.3mm ultra-wide angle to 580mm super telephoto 35mm equivalent). Coupled with the camera's Macro mode, which allows photographers to capture dramatic close-up images of subjects as near to the lens as 0.4 inches, the X-5 delivers an extensive range of creative photographic possibilities.

"The new X-5 features classic PENTAX styling. It is the ideal compact travel companion for photo enthusiasts who want a digital camera with them wherever they go that's capable of taking every type of image from gorgeous portraits, to scenic landscapes to extreme close-ups and more," said John Carlson, Sr. Manager of Sales and Marketing, PENTAX.

And for effortless image composition and image playback, the PENTAX X-5 also features a large tiltable 3.0-inch, high-definition LCD screen that offers sharp image viewing, even in bright sunlight, while allowing users to shoot from high and low angles to keep the subject neatly framed in the image area. By combining a state-of-the-art image processing engine and back-illuminated CMOS image sensor with low-noise, even up to ISO 6400, and approximately 16.0 effective megapixels, the PENTAX X-5 provides users with very high-resolution images.

Additional features include:

State-of-the-art imaging engine, supported by Super Resolution technology

Supported by the latest Super Resolution technology, the X-5's imaging engine offers outstanding image-processing performance to produce clear, high-quality images with well-defined details. In addition, the camera's Handheld Night Scene shooting mode helps the photographer capture blur-free nighttime images by taking multiple images at once and blending them into a single composite picture.

Triple shake-reduction technology for sharp, blur-free images and video

The X-5's triple Shake Reduction (SR) system couples the PENTAX-developed mechanical sensor-shift-type SR mechanism with a digital SR mode for stills or movie SR mode for video to more effectively compensate for camera shake. This hybrid system assures the photographer of sharp, blur-free images and video even under demanding, camera-shake-prone shooting conditions, such as when using a telephoto lens, shooting with incident light in poorly lit locations, or photographing sunset scenes.

Electronic viewfinder

The X-5 features an electronic viewfinder with diopter adjustment for a clear view of the subject even under bright sunshine. This comes in handy when shooting a subject in harsh backlight or when the photographer needs a more solid hold of the camera. Its diopter adjustment mechanism assures the user of the clearest view of both subject and viewfinder display, while minimizing eye fatigue during extended shooting sessions.

Full HD-standard movie recording for extended recording of high-quality movies

The X-5 features a Full HD movie recording function employing the h.264 recording format. The user can capture high quality, extended movie clips (1920 x 1080 pixels at a 16:9 aspect ratio) at a frame rate of 30 frames per second. The camera also offers creative movie playback features, such as High-speed Movie mode for slow-motion playback and Time-lapse Movie mode for fast-forward playback, and features a micro-HDMI terminal (Type D) for the output of recorded movies and sound to external devices.

User-friendly Auto Picture mode for hands-off selection of the best shooting mode

The X-5 features the PENTAX-original Auto Picture mode, which automatically assesses the subject's conditions and selects the most appropriate shooting mode from 16 distinctive shooting options, including Landscape, Portrait, Candlelight and Pet. It even comes with an Auto Macro function, which automatically switches the focus mode to Macro when it detects the subject is close to the lens.

Quick-set mode dial for delay-free selection of a desired shooting mode

The X-5 lets the user quickly and effortlessly select the desired shooting mode - from a total of 10 modes including the hands-off Auto Picture, Scene, Program, Manual, Landscape, and Handheld Night Snap - with a single turn of the mode dial, without having to access the on-screen menu.

Additional features of the PENTAX X-5 include:

• Powered by easy-to-obtain AA batteries
• Remote control operation using a PENTAX optional remote controller
• High-speed burst shooting of up to 10 images per second, for a maximum of 30 images in a single sequence
• 12 digital filters including Miniature and Toy Camera to add creative touches to captured images
• A range of creative image processing tools including Stretch filter, Small Face filter and Collage function
• A choice of three aspect ratios (4:3, 16:9 and 1:1) to accommodate specific applications
• Image viewing, editing and filing software included: MediaImpression 3.5 for PENTAX (Windows version compatible with Windows 7) and MediaImpression 2.1 for PENTAX (Macintosh version compatible with Mac OS X 10.7)
• Compatibility with Eye-Fi wireless LAN SD memory cards

Pricing and Availability

The new PENTAX X-5 will be available at retail outlets nationwide and online in September 2012 with a suggested retail price of $279.95