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Old Jun 7, 2005, 8:09 AM   #1
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I really like my Pentax Optio 43WR, it does everything I need and the 640x480x30fps movie mode is a joy (although the sound quality could be better). So, I hear about the Optio WP and looking over the specs I see it's smaller than the 43WR (could be important to some people) and has better water resistencebut it doesn't use 'AA' batteries and the movie mode has been degraded to 320x240. Except for a reduction in size and more Mp the WP seems a step backwards from the 43WR. Anyone else?

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Old Jun 7, 2005, 9:36 AM   #2
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You forgot to mention that it is also a half stop slower. Light falls off rapidly in water. Except near noon, much of it is reflected off the surface, and it decreases quickly with depth. Of all the cameras to choose to put a substandard lens on the WP is the dumbest IMO.

I don't understand why Pentax would backslide on the movies either. I messed up the LCD on my S4 and would have picked up a S5i by now if they weren't so far behind with the movies. I know it isn't a camcorder, but it is often all you have with you. I also know they finally caught up with a decent movie mode with the S5Z, but they forgot to put a viewfinder on it.

I have a couple dozen NiMH AAs and three chargers. My kayak fishfinder and GPS uses 8 and my marine VHF radio uses 8 as well. My Minolta D7i uses 4 of them. But I don't envision ever buying another camera other than maybe a DSLR that uses AAs. They have the electronics down to where proprietary lithiums will fill a large memory card. They are lighter, more compact and you don't have a self-discharge to deal with. Aftermarket spares are cheap. The one good feature of the WP is that they went to lithium and trimmed it down.

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Old Sep 12, 2005, 8:42 PM   #3
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The Optio WP can be used underwater... it is not merely resistant. It is a nice compliment to my digital SLR. The propritary battery is a nuisance I'll admit but to get such a small form factor....

What can you really expect of the videos anyway?

As for the 1/2 stop... the Optio WP has no external moving parts which is how it can be truely waterproof. The lack of multiple moving lenses accounts for this f-stop difference. Again, as with the small size, something must be given up. I can forego some features to be able to take a good camera into a disaster zone while on a deployment without worrying about rain and spray and sweat ruining a couple of hundred dollars of camera.
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Old Oct 10, 2005, 3:30 AM   #4
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The Optio 43 WR and 33 WR also had no external moving lens parts, so that is not the explanation for the higher speed lenses. The 43 WR has a really great movie mode, with 640 X 480 X 30 fps to the capacity of the SD card; I have shot the same footage with it and a Sony Digital 8 video camera and the WP footage was better than the Sony footage. The 43 WR has a lot of other features that I like that are absent from the WP--it has elaborate time-lapse movie features and an intervalometer mode that means you can leave it perched somewhere in the bush, taking photos and waiting for an animal to do something or appear in the scene, for example (I have 5 optio 33 WRs bought for scientific use for the same feature). The ability to run on AA batteries is also handy for a camera intended for use away from civilization. I note that Optio 43 WRs are selling for about $300 on eBay, that says something about relative value.

Not to criticize the WP unduly, the form factor is great, and if you don't need the features of the WR series, it would be excellent. It still is excellent for outdoors work, and does fantastic closeups. I just wish Pentax hadn't done quite so many retrograde things when moving from WR to WP, or I would definitely be in the line to buy the new 6 MP version. As it is, I will probably stick with the 43 WR.

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Old Dec 5, 2005, 10:58 PM   #5
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I've come to realize that I would be SOLshould something unfortunate happen to my 43WR as nothing else as suitable for my needs is currently available. To that end I've purchased another new43WR off Ebay for $265 shipped to put back "just in case". If something better eventually comes out, then great, I can give the 43WRto my son or something. If not, I'll have my "spare" so I don't have to worry overly much about something eventually happening to my first one.

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