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The best ultra-zoom Pentax digital cameras can be released under Optio product line and most of them are the standard point and shoot cameras. With an optical zoom range of at least 12x, these cameras can be the perfect companions for your vacation and travel. Affordable under the $300 price range, the ultra-zoom cameras listed below capture images of at least 14 Megapixel and support HD 720p video capture.

Browse All Top Ultra-zoom Pentax Digital Cameras »

Pentax XG-1

Pentax XG-1


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Pentax XG-1
Pentax X-5
Pentax Optio VS20
Pentax X90
Pentax X70
Pentax XG-1
Pentax X-5 Digital Camera
Pentax Optio VS20 Light Field Camera
Pentax X90 Digital Camera
Pentax X70 Black Digital Camera
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Release Date
Oct 2014
Aug 2012
Mar 2012
Feb 2010
Jan 2009
Optical Zoom
52.0 x
26.0 x
20.0 x
26.0 x
24.0 x
Camera Type
SLR-like (bridge)
Standard Point and Shoot, SLR-like (bridge)
Light Field Camera, Compact
SLR-like (bridge)
Standard Point and Shoot
Resolution
16.0 Megapixel
16.0 Megapixel
16.0 Megapixel
12.7 Megapixel
12.7 Megapixel
Image Sensor Type
BSI-CMOS
CMOS
CCD
CCD
CCD
LCD Screen Size
3.0 in.
3.0 in.
3.0 in.
2.7 in.
2.7 in.
Image Sensor Size
2.5 mm
7.66 mm
7.7 mm

  • The Pentax XG-1 is a case of less is more. It may lack features like Wi-Fi, GPS and a fold-out or touch-sensitive screen, but it easily makes up for this with decent image quality. Detail, colour and noise levels are all impressive up to ISO1600, although it’s a shame the 16.0MP sensor doesn’t produce better dynamic range. The XG-1 isn’t short on creative effects filters or manual control though, making it appealing to novice and experience photographers alike.


  • Looking at first glance like a fully-fledged DSLR with its pretend lens ring and hotshoe flash cover, the Pentax X-5 soon reveals itself to be something of a wolf in sheep's clothing, leaning much more to the point-and-shoot end of the compact camera spectrum. Those looking for a fully-featured bridge camera will be disappointed, but for everyone else the X-5 is still appealing, especially given its low price tag.


  • While this is a neat little package, you should be aware that there are many other premium compact cameras fulfilling a similar need and producing stronger image quality, offering faster lenses and heavier feature sets, albeit at a slightly higher price point. The Canon PowerShot SX50 HS and Panasonic Lumix FZ200, for example.


  • Pentax have created a decent bridge camera which will appeal to those who want a DSLR style camera but don't want the bulk or perhaps don't have the budget required. There aren't many cameras available with this amount of optical zoom for less than £200, so you'd expect there to be a sacrifice made somewhere. There is with image quality, but it's not much of one.


  • Despite looking enticingly flashy in the press shots with its broader than average zoom lens extended, when placed before you the Pentax Optio VS20 is a bit of a lump compared with travel zooms costing a little more, such as the Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ20 and other Panasonic TZ series cameras.


  • While £199 for a 20x zoom camera suggests good value, the VS20's performance is inconsistent, while dual shutter release buttons come across as more gimmicky than essential.


  • The Pentax Optio VS20 offers a lot of zoom as well as a unique dual shutter and zoom control feature, that is normally reserved for professional Digital SLRs. Another unique is the second tripod socket found on the side. However, we tend to find most tripods have a built in ability to rotate to portrait shooting, so we suspect the portrait shot mode will be used without a tripod. Apart from this, the camera is quite large in comparison to other pocket zoom cameras.

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    - Along with the expected landscape, portrait, children and pets optimized options, the X90 user has a chance via 'digital wide' mode to shoot two shots which are then stitched together in camera along with a broader panorama option.

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    - Inaccurate Auto White Balance under mixed lighting .
    - The camera is able to capture its first image in 3.1 seconds after you press the power button.
    - It is very good at detecting and following faces within the frame.
    - Our sample video plays back smoothly, but shows a lot of noise.


  • - The Pentax also performs well in our indoor-flash test with natural skin tones and good detail thanks to a low sensitivity of ISO 200.
    - The rubberized hand grip and thumb rest ensure safe handling and despite its compact dimensions the X90 is comfortable to hold in most situations.
    - Sharpness at the maximum zoom setting is actually very good.


  • - The fastest is able to capture up to 21 photos at an average of 12fps.
    - Photo quality is very good for a megazoom camera, but it's still a point-and-shoot.


  • - Startup to snap time seemed slow, and the camera also lagged enough between photos that I found myself missing the playground shots.


  • - Digital photography news and reviews The Pentax X70's button layout is relatively easy to use, but the ‘smile detection' button is a waste.


Top 5 ultra-zoom pentax digital camera:

  1. Pentax XG-1
  2. Pentax X-5 Digital Camera
  3. Pentax Optio VS20 Light Field Camera
  4. Pentax X90 Digital Camera
  5. Pentax X70 Black Digital Camera