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Pentax Optio RS1500 review

Our Rating :
Price when reviewed : £90
inc VAT

Not without problems, but serviceable photo and video quality, fun designs and a low price add up to an attractive deal.


1/2.33in 14.0-megapixel sensor, 4.0x zoom (27.5-110mm equivalent), 127g

Barrel distortion appeared to afflict photos too, but we were relieved to see that the saved JPEGs had been straightened using digital processing. Details looked sharp, but this relied heavily on digital processing too, giving an odd-looking halo to high-contrast lines and exaggerating noise at slow ISO speeds. A combination of digital sharpening and noise reduction gave higher-ISO shots a slightly syrupy appearance when viewed up close.

Pentax Optio RS1500 sample 2

Even so, this camera acquitted itself well in low light, with optical stabilisation to counteract shakes, well-chosen automatic settings and pictures that looked fine when resized to fit a computer screen.

It doesn’t stand out for image quality, but if the custom designs appeal, the camera as a whole doesn’t disappoint.

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Basic Specifications

Rating ****
CCD effective megapixels 14.0 megapixels
CCD size 1/2.33in
Viewfinder none
Viewfinder magnification, coverage N/A
LCD screen size 3.0in
LCD screen resolution 230,000 pixels
Articulated screen No
Live view Yes
Optical zoom 4.0x
Zoom 35mm equivalent 27.5-110mm
Image stabilisation optical, sensor shift
Maximum image resolution 4,288×3,216
Maximum movie resolution 1280×720
Movie frame rate at max quality 30fps
File formats JPEG; AVI (M-JPEG)


Memory slot SDHC
Mermory supplied 21MB internal
Battery type Li-ion
Battery Life (tested) 210 shots
Connectivity USB, AV
HDMI output resolution N/A
Body material plastic
Lens mount N/A
Focal length multiplier N/A
Kit lens model name N/A
Accessories USB and AV cables
Weight 127g
Size 56x92x23mm

Buying Information

Warranty one-year RTB
Price £90

Camera Controls

Exposure modes auto
Shutter speed auto
Aperture range f/3.2 (wide), f/5.9 (tele)
ISO range (at full resolution) 100 to 6400
Exposure compensation +/-2 EV
White balance auto, 4 presets, manual
Additional image controls shadow correction
Manual focus Yes
Closest macro focus 8cm
Auto-focus modes multi, centre, face detect, tracking
Metering modes multi, face detect
Flash auto, forced, suppressed, red-eye reduction
Drive modes single, self-timer