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Pentax goes deeper with Optio W80

The newest water and shockproof camera from Pentax can survive up to two hours underwater--down to 16 feet.


There's been an explosion of waterproof and rugged cameras and camcorders this year, and Wednesday Pentax added one more to the list (though it's been making them since 2003). The Optio W80 is a water/dust/shock/freezeproof 12-megapixel camera with a 2.5-inch LCD selling for less than $300.

The W80 can apparently survive an impressive dunk: down to 16 feet for up to two hours. It'll also take a decent fall of up to 3.3 feet and keep working in temperatures as low as 14 degrees Fahrenheit.

On top of its "proofing," the W80 has fairly good camera specs, too. The internal lens has a zoom range of 5x and is wide angle, too, at 28mm. It records 720p, HD-quality video at 30fps. It also has the expected convenience features such as face, smile, and blink detection; auto scene recognition; and a bunch of other automatic shooting options.

About the only thing missing is optical image stabilization; the W80 only has Pentax's digital Pixel Track SR, which though it's good, still degrades photo quality.

Look for it in July in the three colors pictured above: Cardinal Red, Azure Blue, and Gunmetal Gray (just in case you were confused as to what those colors are actually called).