Pentax Optio H90 

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This is a name that has been huge in lenses for longer than even I can remember. Here a small unobtrusive matt box that would not attract a second look. Will the images it takes move it up from the mundane to the yes please?

pentax optio h90 compact digital camera

The Pentax Optio H90 compact digital camera measures 9.5x5.5x2cm however you can double the last figure the width when the camera is zoomed in. It weights 128grams.

The colour scheme is matt black and matt silver, the face has the 5.1 to 25.5mm lens that gives up to 5x zoom and above and to the right of this the slit flash that is never nearer than 3cm to the lens. The only other thing on the face is a rubber strip down the right edge to improve grip.

Both the left and right sides are clear while the base has a tripod screw on the very left edge and AV socket towards the centre and a door hiding the solid battery and whatever SD card you might use towards the right edge.

The top of this 12.1MP offering has two small buttons, the smaller with a red dot is the on/off while the larger with a grey dot is the shutter release, on the top edge near the right side is an anchor point for the wrist strap.

This leaves the rear of the camera which has a slightly recessed 5.5x4.1cm TFT (2.7inch diagonal) and to the right of this the telephoto/wide angle rocker and below this four buttons with the ubiquitous five position joystick splitting them.

There are a total of twenty four shooting modes, Auto, Program, Night, Night Portrait, Half Portrait, Movie, Landscape, Flower, Portrait, Surf & Snow, Sport, Digital SR, Kids, Pets, Food, Fireworks, Frame Composite, Party, Skin Tone, Candlelight, Text, Blogs (forced 640x480), Digital Wide for stitching and Panorama. I will admit in the time allowed for the review I have not tried all of them and if I Had tried some more I might have been happier with the flash mode.

pentax optio h90 rear
click image to enlarge

There are 8 image sizes available 12MP high, 12MP, 7MP, 5MP, 3MP, 2.1MP (16:9) 1MP and VGA. A 5 MP image 2592x1944 takes just over 1MB of storage space dependant of course on the content of the image taken.

For movies there are six modes 1280 30FPS, 1280 15FPS, 640 30FPS, 640 15FPS, 320 30FPS and 320 15FPS. A one minute movie taken at 640x480 30FPS will use around 60MB of hard disc space dependant on content.

The small 28 page Quick Guide should allow even the novice user to get up and running using auto mode and on the whole the images they take will not disappoint apart from flash where I was unable to get satisfactory results. In a lot of cases in a dimly lit room I could not get the flash to fire and images were of course rather yellow like nicotine stained and of course not that clear. When the flash did fire the effect was harsh with a huge fall away beyond around 2.5-3metres to near black. Of course my unit may have been faulty but I can only test on what I am given.

Daylight shots were good and even zoomed images seemed quite stable and free from shake. The scene modes I tried did not appear to change the shot taken greatly from Auto mode when taking a similar image. Most of what I printed were 3 and 5MP images the former should be enough for an A4 image and the latter fine for printing part of an image again at A4. The daylight images I took fulfilled this criteria without any problems.

Doing my Internet searches found the Pentax Optio H90 in black at a best price of £87.42. I see they do other colour combinations that might be a appealing but these come at higher prices. Silver, Orange and a silver/black combination are all available for £99.99.

I found the Pentax Optio H90 available for $99.99 from Amazon on the first link below including free delivery. I see they do other colour combinations that might be a little appealing but the prices vary. Silver is also available for $99.99 but the orange variant comes in at $108.99.

I found the Pentax Optio H90 available in silver for €114,97 from Amazon including free delivery. The orange variant is also available for the same price, but in black the price is €124,99.

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