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  1. #1
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    Default Pentax Optio W90

    I created a new thread b/c it's a drift from Mike Krueger's original thread. I've also posted this on another forum.

    >>

    I don't know if this will be my full review, but let's say that I'm not at all happy with the Pentax W90.

    Used it for the first time today on an inspection.

    One of my absolute requirements is that the clock in the camera keeps good time b/c I synchronize the photos to my report.

    The Pentax is consistently 25 seconds off. Regardless what I do to synchronize the clock with my computer's clock - the camera automatically and instantly becomes 25 seconds earlier than the computer.

    I charged the battery that came with the camera so that it would be full and ready to go. I took a bunch of pictures so that I could see the battery in action. It ran out of steam before I finished the inspection and I had to put the other battery in (which was 2/3 full).

    Total pictures? 162 and that's with both batteries!!!!!! Unacceptable. The fully charged battery took the lion's share of the photos and my assumption on the other battery is probably not accurate. Flash was used but it would have to be 50% or less of the total number of pics.

    Pros: all of the "proofs" (water, dust, drop), size, shape, rubberized exterior, the ability to slip in and out of my pocket or pouch without the lens catching on anything, the ability to take pictures one-handed and feel comfortable doing it (not like I was going to drop it), picture quality was fine (most cameras today are IMO), the Auto Picture feature (automatically selects the scene) - works great going to Macro

    Cons: proprietary batteries, battery life, camera clock, Auto Picture feature in some instances would not use the flash when it was necessary and I couldn't even force flash for some reason - I had to switch to Program Mode so that it would take good pictures in the attic

    Debating whether or not to send it back. I like several of the features but the battery life and camera clock are very important to me.

    If I left something off that you've got a question about, post or email me.


    Inspection Referral SOC
    Bruce Thompson, Lic. #9199
    www.TylerHomeInspector.com
    Home Inspections in the Tyler and East Texas area

  2. #2
    Mitchell Toelle's Avatar
    Mitchell Toelle Guest

    Default Re: Pentax Optio W90

    If looking for an alternative to the Pentax line, consider the Olypus line of "Stylus Tough". Longer batt. times, several other features better, shorter cycling times, better movie capabilities, accept both SD and XD cards. Do a search for reviews on both mnfr. all models, then decide. I have used my daughter's Stylus Tough 6020 on a few inspections and have to say....I likey.

    IMHO, these new breed of (all proof) cameras are a smart way to go for the environments we have to shoot in. When done at the end of the day just wash-n-go. Can't do that with my other point and shoots or my DSLR.


  3. #3
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    Default Re: Pentax Optio W90

    Must be defective.
    I often take 250 plus shots at each home.
    How many batteries if I did 2 in a row?


  4. #4
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    Default Re: Pentax Optio W90

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Elliott View Post
    Must be defective.
    I often take 250 plus shots at each home.
    How many batteries if I did 2 in a row?
    Could you tell me what you sync up the clock for?


  5. #5
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    Default Re: Pentax Optio W90

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Elliott View Post
    Could you tell me what you sync up the clock for?
    The software I use, Interspect Voice, will add the photos with my command. If the clocks are synch-ed (or close enough) all I have to do is voice my issue and add the photo.

    Like this:

    Bruce (wearing my wireless headset and walking around the home): "Add water pressure too high" (this is my title for a pre-typed sentence or two discussing high pressure and the evils therein)

    Interspect (talking in my ear): "Added quick text"

    Then I take a photograph of the pressure gauge to substantiate.

    Bruce: "Add issue photo"

    Interspect: "Issue photo added"

    Interspect adds a little tag with a time stamp on it. At the end of the inspection, I insert my SD card and upload the photos. With one click, all of the photos go into the appropriate places on the report. I really like doing this which is why the camera needs to sync with the computer.

    Now for my caveat: after working on the Pentax last night (I like this camera for the pros and really want to make it work). So I played around with it all evening and discovered it was pilot error on the time/clock issue. In a nutshell, I've got 4 digital cameras from 4 different epochs and each set the time the same way. However, the Pentax is different and I made the assumption that it was the same.

    So, that myth is busted. And it was my myth-take.

    So my only issue left is the poor battery life. I'm still working on that too. Will update when I figure it out.

    Bruce

    Bruce Thompson, Lic. #9199
    www.TylerHomeInspector.com
    Home Inspections in the Tyler and East Texas area

  6. #6
    Mitchell Toelle's Avatar
    Mitchell Toelle Guest

    Default Re: Pentax Optio W90

    25 seconds should not make much, if any, difference in liability when it comes to posting the time with your photos. However, it does sound like a defect. Better consider taking it back for an exchange. Most user reviews of the W90 I have read are positive. If taking back for refund you should consider the other mnfr's of this category camera. Most should be offering approx. 200 photos +- per charge. Aftermarket batteries are available at a higher Ma/ hr. rating, as well as cig. lighter chargers so you can charge anytime and at a house without power. Most are so inexpensive you could buy 3 or 4 batts. and still be way ahead of the game compared to AA rechargables.


  7. #7
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    Default Re: Pentax Optio W90

    I think you would love my HXV5 since it has GPS positioning .
    In text that sounds like a great product as many softwares(major) are now looking into i pad and android apps.
    I have heard of it but is it always correct in transcription?
    Even my Dragon on a USB mic makes mistakes and I think about interference.(OK another subject).


  8. #8
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    Default Re: Pentax Optio W90

    Quote Originally Posted by Mitchell Toelle View Post
    25 seconds should not make much, if any, difference in liability when it comes to posting the time with your photos. However, it does sound like a defect. Better consider taking it back for an exchange. Most user reviews of the W90 I have read are positive. If taking back for refund you should consider the other mnfr's of this category camera. Most should be offering approx. 200 photos +- per charge. Aftermarket batteries are available at a higher Ma/ hr. rating, as well as cig. lighter chargers so you can charge anytime and at a house without power. Most are so inexpensive you could buy 3 or 4 batts. and still be way ahead of the game compared to AA rechargables.
    see earlier post....I figured out the clock issue and corrected it.

    I found the AA rechargeables to be cheaper on the whole.

    Bruce Thompson, Lic. #9199
    www.TylerHomeInspector.com
    Home Inspections in the Tyler and East Texas area

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Pentax Optio W90

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Elliott View Post
    I think you would love my HXV5 since it has GPS positioning .
    In text that sounds like a great product as many softwares(major) are now looking into i pad and android apps.
    I have heard of it but is it always correct in transcription?
    Even my Dragon on a USB mic makes mistakes and I think about interference.(OK another subject).
    In transcription it is not always correct. In Windows Vista and using MS Voice Recognition 8, the transcription was AWESOME. But when I switched to Win 7, it went back to mediocre. Go figure. Interspect Voice (IV) uses the MS software as an add-in I guess. The MS software has a training feature and I've used that quite a bit.

    Now having said that, when using IV I'm merely using the quick text (99% of the time) and therefore it is listening for my preprogrammed blurbs, such as "Outlet failed ground fault" or "water pressure too high"

    When using the quick texts, it is spot on 99.9 % of the time.

    I think Steve McNeese is also working on an Iphone app for it. I don't know if the voice will work on that too.

    Since I'm causing this thread to drift, I created a thread on The Inspector Journal because someone asked me to. I can copy and paste here if need be.

    Bruce

    Bruce Thompson, Lic. #9199
    www.TylerHomeInspector.com
    Home Inspections in the Tyler and East Texas area

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Pentax Optio W90

    Quote Originally Posted by JB Thompson View Post
    see earlier post....I figured out the clock issue and corrected it.

    I found the AA rechargeables to be cheaper on the whole.
    How is picture quality and speed between shots?
    Also what about video?
    Do you use it and how is it?


  11. #11
    Ted Menelly's Avatar
    Ted Menelly Guest

    Default Re: Pentax Optio W90

    Wow

    Ran out that quick.

    My Sony can does at least a few hundred pics or so and all with flash. (the most I can remember. it could have been more but I did not want to stretch it) You must walk around the entire inspection with it on. I turn mine on, snap a pic and shut it off. Sometimes it will be on for a while straight and then click it off. If I see a possible issue I turn it on while looking and by the time I would be ready to take a pic it is up and ready.

    I can do 2 inspections and still have power left when I get home.


  12. #12
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    Default Re: Pentax Optio W90

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Elliott View Post
    How is picture quality and speed between shots?
    Also what about video?
    Do you use it and how is it?
    Picture quality seems to be fine. I haven't seen many digital cameras with just terrible photos. I've had a Minolta, Samsung, Canon and Pentax. All good pictures.

    The Pentax goes up to 12 mp. Even takes widescreen photos.

    I did use the video yesterday as I walked out of the home. (John Cahill gave me the idea of video taping my departure. I show the windows/doors locked, thermostat, sinks off, stove off, etc....) I don't know what to compare it to, but the video seem OK to me. I believe it has a couple of settings for that. I'll check.

    Bruce

    Bruce Thompson, Lic. #9199
    www.TylerHomeInspector.com
    Home Inspections in the Tyler and East Texas area

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Pentax Optio W90

    Quote Originally Posted by JB Thompson View Post
    Picture quality seems to be fine. I haven't seen many digital cameras with just terrible photos. I've had a Minolta, Samsung, Canon and Pentax. All good pictures.

    The Pentax goes up to 12 mp. Even takes widescreen photos.

    I did use the video yesterday as I walked out of the home. (John Cahill gave me the idea of video taping my departure. I show the windows/doors locked, thermostat, sinks off, stove off, etc....) I don't know what to compare it to, but the video seem OK to me. I believe it has a couple of settings for that. I'll check.

    Bruce
    Guess I was wondering ease of switching from vid to pic as I use vid for more complicated dialog on occasion for notes and then for a 2 minute walk through.
    Sony Cool pix first touchscreen model with that Krutchner guy in the commercials is worst quality I ever had with static looking photos.
    I never use it though it takes fast notes. absolutely horrible video quality also.


  14. #14
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    Default Re: Pentax Optio W90

    I purchased a LUMIX DMC-TS2 over the Optio. In comparison (see link)
    it has:

    1. Image stabilization. Optio - no
    2. Increased flash distance
    3. Intelligent metering
    4. Larger internal storage
    5. HDMI
    6. Greater water and shock protection.

    : Digital Photography Review

    I've been using the camera for 4 months and have had great success. Very fast recycle time and good battery life. (I also bought extra batteries and storage cards for emergency)


  15. #15
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    Default Re: Pentax Optio W90

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Elliott View Post
    Guess I was wondering ease of switching from vid to pic as I use vid for more complicated dialog on occasion for notes and then for a 2 minute walk through.
    Sony Cool pix first touchscreen model with that Krutchner guy in the commercials is worst quality I ever had with static looking photos.
    I never use it though it takes fast notes. absolutely horrible video quality also.

    Sorry, I'm not the guy for video review. I've looking for a camcorder for the family, but I don't even know what I want/need.

    As far as the Pentax, you can set the video for 1280 @ 30 fps or @ 15 fps and 640 and 320 (all either 30 or 15 fps). Can record in HDTV format.

    It even has the ability to do timed interval shooting. I believe this is where it will come on and film for a period of time then shut off. Maybe useful if you set it in front of mold and want to watch it grow.

    Also has shake reduction feature for video filming.

    As far as switching, push the mode button, tab over to video and hit ok. There a "green" button that you can set to do voice notes.

    On Ken's review, he mentions lack of stabilization. I do have something on here called shake reduction. Optio has HDMI as well. Not sure about the rest. I do agree battery life isn't good, but I knew that going in. I thought I was getting a decent backup, but maybe I didn't. I've also recently heard that these LI batteries have to be used a few time b4 they reach their full potential.

    I plan on taking a bunch of shots today to test that theory.

    Bruce

    Bruce Thompson, Lic. #9199
    www.TylerHomeInspector.com
    Home Inspections in the Tyler and East Texas area

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