Pentax Optio WG-2 Brief Review


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  • 16 megapixel BSI CMOS sensor
  • 5x optical zoom with 28mm wide-angle
  • Waterproof to 40 ft, shockproof to 5 ft, freezeproof to 14 degrees Fahrenheit, crushproof to 100KG, dustproof
  • 3-inch LCD
  • 1080p full HD video with mono sound
  • Lithium-ion battery
  • Release Date: 2012-03-31
  • Final Grade: 84 4.2 Star Rating: Recommended

Pentax Optio WG-2
16 megapixel BSI CMOS sensor; 5x optical zoom with 28mm wide-angle; Waterproof to 40 ft, shockproof to 5 ft, freezeproof to 14 degrees Fahrenheit, crushproof to 100KG, dustproof; 3-inch LCD; 1080p full HD video with mono sound; Lithium-ion battery;
By , Last updated on: 9/29/2014

Pentax's super-rugged WG-1 gets an update in the WG-2 and WG-2 GPS. The old CCD sensor is switched out for a shiny new backlit CMOS sensor than outputs 1080p HD video. Waterproof to 40 feet, shockproof from up to a 5-foot drop, crush-proof to withstand up to 100KG of force, cold-proof to 14F, and dust-proof, this camera has the works. Another unique selling point is the circle of bright LED lights that surround the lens, adding a ring-light effect that's perfect for illuminating underwater subjects. The only difference between the WG-2 and the WG-2 GPS is the GPS unit, which will cost you an extra $50. Initial reviews are disappointingly poor, citing sluggish controls and poor image quality as real downsides to an otherwise promising camera. Pentax seems seems to have forgotten they're first and foremost designing a camera, not an indestructible brick.

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Pentax/Ricoh Reviews

Pentax, who just recently merged with Ricoh, has long been a sort of underdog—but not necessarily in performance or quality. Pentax/Ricoh offers some quirky cameras, but for the most part, we've found that to be a good thing.

The Pentax/Ricoh DSLR’s are mostly weather-sealed, giving them a unique advantage over competing manufacturers that don't offer anything similar. When we tried out models like the K-50, we were quite impressed with the image quality. The autofocus was a bit noisier than a Nikon, but the weather-sealing and often better price is hard to resist when the image quality is so good. Pentax continued to add in innovations by adding an anti-aliasing filter that can be turned on and off to the 2013 K-3.

Pentax hasn't jumped into the mirrorless battle too much, but they do offer the tiny and colorful Q7. With a smaller sensor and a smaller price point, the Q7 and similar models are more of a consumer mirrorless than one for the enthusiasts, but it's an extremely small camera with a whole lot of color options.

Pentax has a few solid compact models out too. The Pentax MX-1 earned our Best Budget Advanced Compact for 2013 for its advanced features yet small price tag. They offer a waterproof line that includes macro ring lights built in, something unique to the WG cameras.

Pentax/Ricoh may be a bit quirky, but many of their cameras are well worth a look and offer excellent image quality for the price.

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