Pentax Option WG-1 Fishing Camera.
When the first of the waterproof Pentax camera came out a few years ago I was instantly a big fan. They were easy to use and for back in the day took decent photos. I actually bought them for almost 4 generations of upgrade. From the Optio WP all the way to WP40.
Following the success of the Pentax optio, the Kodak Playsport, and the Olympus series, there has been many waterproof cameras on the market the last couple years. I tried a couple of the Olympus but was never really impressed with their ergonomics. I love the Kodak Playsport as it was easy to use and relatively inexpensive.
For the 2011 Pentax just came out with the Optio WG-1 their next generation of waterproof outdoor point and shoot camera. When I saw it at the store I was thinking so what. Besides the fancy “rugged” looking case and more megapixel, what else is new?
When I got home I did more research and found out it was actually had some interesting upgrade from the last generation of Optio.
- Rugged 12th-generation waterproof digital camera is adventure proof, and suitable for almost any environment
- Waterproof to 33 feet; shockproof design protects from drops up to 5 feet; also crushproof, coldproof and dustproof * perfect specs for a fishing camera. *
- 14-megapixel resolution; wide-angle 5x internal optical zoom lens (28-140mm equivalent)
- Capture video in widescreen 720p HD at 30 frames per second
- Compatible with SD, SDHC, SDXC memory cards (not included)
- Optional GPS function
Above is the cut and paste quick specs. I will go over some of the more interesting features that peaked my interest.
5x optical zoom, for a point and shoot waterproof, this is pretty good. Digital zoom is useless to me.
Able to use 46mm filters. This awesome for a point a shoot camera. For a fishing camera you want the ability to use a polarize filter. Polarization gets rid of the glare make things outside look better overall. It is the equivalent of putting sunglasses on your camera.
Last but not least, it has a built in Macro LED lights to do some awesome close ups. The camera can focus less than an inch away from the subject. Getting cool shots of fish scales, insects, water droplets, flies, lures, leaves, eyeballs has never been easier. Lots of cool concepts come to mind that I could never do before. Underwater video macro shots, rain macro video and stills.
The macro with a built in ring light is just a really cool feature I have never seen in a waterproof/rugged camera. Buying a macro lens for your DSLR runs $500 to $1000, this alone is worth the upgrade.
The camera list for $349.00 but I found it on Amazon for $285.00.
Bellow is a video preview I found and it shows how close you can actually get with the camera in macro mode. You can see the folds and creases in the skin, very cool.