November 28, 2008

A Closer Look at Total Cleanse

Total Cleanse is an all-advanced internal cleansing formula which is used by more than 500,000 Americans. It provides the best results in terms of removal of toxins in the body especially the harmful ones that can later on lead to various health problems. Total Cleanse reviews had established its advanced proprietary blend and efficacy in eliminating colonic waste, toxic build ups and parasites, making it the best and the most powerful internal cleansing formula in the market.

Total Cleanse is currently giving away a free 15-day trial supply for those who want to experience its cleansing and detoxifying action. Free Total Cleanse which is good for 15 days can help you experience its body cleansing properties at no cost. After this free trial period, you can decide for yourself if you want to purchase the full cleansing product.

Total Cleanse results are apparent after only 14 days of usage as testified by those people who have tried the product. Many users and testers had noted a drop of 10 to 15 pounds from their weight during the first 14 days of using Total Cleanse. This is 10 to 15 pounds worth of colonic waste and build-ups stored in the body.

Total Cleanse benefits are exceptional and cannot be provided by any other body detoxifying products often seen online and featured in various stores. This is a unique all-natural product which is unlike any other product sold in the market that highlights the same action and internal body cleansing properties. Some of the best and well-known Total Cleanse health benefits that consumers can expect from this potent formula are; complete cleansing action and detoxification
of the colon, replenishment of friendly and healthy bacteria in the intestines, detoxification of the body’s vital organs like the liver, kidneys and other areas of the body where toxins and heavy metals tend to build up and as a result of removal of toxic waste in the body, a flatter stomach can be achieved and weight drop of 10 to 15 pounds notable after the first 14 days of usage.

Another unique and exceptional feature of Total Cleanse is that it can replenish the essential nutrients and antioxidants that had been lost due to the harmful body pollution. This is an essential feature missed by other competitive products. Total Cleanse body cleansing and detoxifying solution is the same product featured in Dr. Oz and Oprah. It is indeed one of the healthiest and well-loved products in America with thousands of satisfied users and testers.

Imagine how much waste and toxins accumulate in our body as days, months and even years go by. These impurities may be the culprit for so many health problems that people encounter such as fatigue and physical exhaustion, skin problems such as dry skin and acne, hypertension, constipation, gastric problems and many others. The bottom line is that, the body becomes polluted as time goes by due to accumulation of toxins. This can be harmful to the various organs in the body. Moreover, accumulated waste in the colon can even interfere with absorption of essential nutrients coming from the food that is taken. By following the recommended intake of Total Cleanse, this can be avoided. More importantly, proper health and wellness can be promoted. Nothing beats the amazing results because you will feel better, lighter and cleansed from within.

People are becoming more and more conscious with their physical appearance nowadays. It is a competitive world out there and people are striving to look their best in order to land the best jobs, get noticed for promotions, to socialize and many other reasons. These are the reasons why many beauty products are being advertised. Some are for skin cleansing, skin renewal and rejuvenation, skin lightening and blemish removal among many others. There are numerous soaps, gels, shampoos and creams that are meant to cleanse the external body. However, there remain toxins inside you and they are just there building up with the passage of time. The best way to look great is to feel great. Total Cleanse can do the job effectively because real cleansing comes from within. Once your body’s toxins are eliminated, you will feel clean and beautiful inside and out. Removal of toxins from your body also promotes good skin, healthier system and sound body.

Total Cleanse is an all-natural product proven by thousands of Americans to deliver exceptional results both for health and wellness. It has a tried and tested formula that had made a lot of people happy not only for its detoxifying properties but also because it can help people achieve and maintain a flatter tummy. Things cannot get any better with Total Cleanse.

Total Cleanse Reviews had featured numerous people who had been greatly satisfied by its effective formula. The best part is that it can help replenish the essential nutrients and antioxidants needed by the body but had been lost as a result of body pollution. This is one important product feature of Total Cleanse that is reason enough for people to try and test it.

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If you want to experience the amazing health benefits of Total Cleanse, simply get hold of the free trial pack and receive 15 days worth of free supply. The trial period can help you decide whether or not to purchase the full cleansing product. Clearly, there is nothing to lose but a lot to gain from simply getting hold of a trial package. During the trial phase, clear results can already be expected and that only consists of 15 days.

A healthy body is clean and detoxified from inside out. Total Cleanse is one natural health product that you can include to complete your cleansing ritual. It guarantees results that you can never find elsewhere or in any other product sold in the market. Keep in mind that colonic waste, toxins, build ups and parasites can harm your body in many ways. It is best to get rid of them effectively, safely and naturally. The earlier you recognize the importance of inner body cleansing, the nearer you are to getting optimum health and wellness. You would be surprised at how inner cleansing can help improve even your physical appearance.

Source: New Design World

Interview: Sony's Buser On PlayStation Home's 2008 Launch

Interview: Sony's Buser On  PlayStation Home 's 2008 Launch Sony's PlayStation Home online world for the PlayStation 3 has had a somewhat tortured genesis, with a long period of beta testing and a release date originally pegged for late 2007, before being delayed to Spring 2008 and back to now.

However, PlayStation Home director Jack Buser tells Gamasutra that the release of the tardy but much-discussed PS3-defining virtual world "will launch this year".

In this interview, Buser discusses "community first" as the watchword for the PlayStation 3 application, despite third party influence, and the HDK (Home Development Kit).

If we boil PlayStation Home down to its essence, what do you really see it as?

Jack Buser: We really consider Home a "3D social gaming community." A place where our community can go and meet their friends, meet new friends, visit themed public spaces... Create a custom avatar and virtual space, but the crown jewel of our service is the ability to jump from home directly into our online games together.

This is a seamless integration; you can fully set up your online game within the world, wander about and find your friends or find some new people and then jump into the game as you've set it up with them; bypassing all those in-game configuration screens, and once you're done you just jump back into Home.

And this is part of the PlayStation Network, which is free to use. It doesn't cost anything more. For the users who want to stand out there will be microtransactions; you'll be able to buy virtual items or even premium virtual spaces.

One of the things that stands out to me in comparison to your competitors is still your decision to go for realistic avatars.

JB: The avatars are realistic because we wanted to create an avatar system that the PlayStation 3 community would be proud to call their own. Avatars are now considered "par for the course" when it comes to next-generation consoles these days, sure, but we think we've taken it a step further because we also have that personal space for your avatar.

Users can express themselves in more ways than just how their avatar looks. That's important, because in the real world you might learn some things about a person by the way that they're dressed or the things that they talk about, but you don't really know someone until you see how they live. Do they have dishes in the sink, what posters did they put on the wall…

We really see this as revolutionizing the concept of the "friends list" for console gamers. Before, your friends were either people you already knew or people you'd met in a specific game, and with the latter, you'd probably only ever play that one game with them, and never really get to know them,.

PlayStation Home
gives you a neutral space where you can really get to know someone. Even in the real world now if you're a gamer and you want to get to know other gamers, there really is nowhere left to go.

There used to be the arcade; you could go up to the nearest machine, put a quarter in and start talking about the new games that were coming out as you play.

But that place doesn't exist any more. If you're a gamer, unless there happens to be an event in your town there is no place to meet like-minded people. Home is that place. It really leapfrogs the offerings on other game consoles.

This has been a really massive undertaking. You might have seen aspects of its features elsewhere, but the culmination and aggregation of them all together really has created an entirely unique experience.

If you look around PlayStation Home it's beautiful, but that's really only the icing on the cake. The real heavy lifting in developing PlayStation Home has been in developing the core engine, the platform that allows third parties to create content for the world. It's been much more akin to creating a game console itself than it has been a game.

And Home is definitely going to launch this year?

JB: it's imminent. We haven't announced a specific date but we will make a public announcement.

It has suffered many delays already, of course.

JB: When you think about PlayStation Home you really have to think of it, as I've said before, as a massive undertaking. We've been trying to create something that really has never been done before.

But we're now at the point where we've created the platform, third-parties are creating content for the platform, and yeah, we have executed on our vision and we're standing in a really good place with it and we will launch this year.

The platform is really strong. It's going to allow us to scale very organically with all the content that third parties are going to be adding -- you're really going to see PlayStation Home evolve over time.

When you go into PlayStation Home it's going to be a very different experience maybe, six, twelve months down the line compared to what you see on day one.

How are third parties getting their content into PlayStation Home?

JB: There are two ways. There's what we call our HDK, the Home Development Kit, that allows them to create content themselves, and we work with them on the concept, but it's really them creating their content in-house.

For other publishers or brands that don't have the bandwidth or expertise to do it themselves, we have a "managed vendor process" where we have vendors, managed by us, who are experts are creating content for PlayStation Home, and we work with our third parties and vendor network to execute on their vision.

It's a painless experience to create content for PlayStation Home for third parties even if they have no experience.

Which was Ubisoft's recent Far Cry 2 space?

JB: That was developed through our managed vendor process, actually. It represented the first third-party space in PlayStation Home, and that was a huge milestone for us.

The level of interest we've seen in PlayStation Home has been off the chart. Companies are chomping at the bit to be involved—we're seeing spaces launch and the world hasn't even launched yet!

How are you trying to manage the "real estate" of these different third party spaces?

JB: PlayStation Home is community first. We want to offer what the community want to see in the world. It isn't going to be a space just plastered with random banner ads everywhere, but will feature content that reinforces the core community.

In addition, the concept is that these third party spaces are discrete. So while have these hubs, the third party areas will act as spokes to these hubs, and players will be able to reach them that way or by jumping to them directly on the map. There really won't be any problem for users to find or access the spaces they want to see.

More than that, these spaces aren't going to be places that companies can just put up and forget about. Their launches are community events and they should constantly engage the community and be refreshed with new stuff to do, and our public hub spaces will draw traffic to those spaces very efficiently.

When Home launches however you may have several competing companies all wishing to draw attention to their space at the same time.


JB: Sure, and that's one of the things that we're doing in our process of managing Home. It isn't going to be a free-for-all. It is managed by us so that we can make sure that brands that come in come in at the opportune time, that there is a committed level of community engagement and that they get a high degree of return on their investment.

It will be flexible, however. If we engage with a party that wants to do something a little different, a space or event that lasts a limited amount of time, or something else, we could do that. Nothing is explicitly off the table. Some content will be evergreen, but some will come and go. It really depends on what the goals of the content are.

But you're including traditional served billboard in-game advertising too?


JB: You will see a certain amount of that inside PlayStation Home, but we're more focused on the things which will provide real value to our community and working with third parties who want to do that.


Source: Gamasutra

A fireplace insert can add warmth, cut costs

With the cost of home heating bills looming, what can a homeowner do to keep warm, short of wearing a lot of sweaters to bed?

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Those with existing fireplaces might want to consider a wood-burning insert. The cast-iron or steel inserts can increase the efficiency of a fireplace, turning it into a supplemental heater for the home.

“An open fireplace is pretty much a wash,” said Jack Hilliard of Etowah Fireplace & Patio in Etowah. “The newer fireplace inserts are approaching 70 percent efficiency in getting the heat into your home.”

A fireplace insert is an insulated, closed-door system that allows the user more control over the fire. Heat radiates through the glass and stays in the room. It is not sucked up the flue, as a fireplace tends to do.

“A regular fireplace actually gives you a negative efficiency, because it sucks heat out of the house when it's not in use,” said Bo Hilliard, president of Biltmore Home and Hearth in Mills River. “With a wood-burning insert, you have a sealed combustion chamber, and they burn at a much higher rate of efficiency.”

Environmentally friendly

According to the Hearth, Patio & Barbecue Association, a fireplace insert increases the efficiency of a fireplace and helps protect winter air quality by reducing fireplace emissions.

“When fireplace inserts are up to heat and burning efficiently, there is no visible smoke and very low particulate matter, so they burn very cleanly,” Jack Hilliard said.

“With an insert, you have a primary burn like you would have in a fireplace,” Bo Hilliard said. “Then, the smoke that would normally escape gets mixed with oxygen and burned again, so you get a cleaner burn and more heat for the same amount of wood.”

What you'll pay

Prices for fireplace inserts start around $1,200 and go up to about $3,000, depending on the size of the fireplace. Installation usually runs between $800 and $1,200.

In order for the insert to work at maximum efficiency, most chimneys will need to be fitted with a 6-inch stainless steel insert that attaches to the insert.

“Most chimneys in our area are 12-inch-by-12-inch flue liners, and if you vent a 6-inch fireplace liner into a 12-by-12 chimney, you won't get a good draft.”

The chimney liner will add another $600 to $800 to the package.


Source: Citizen Times

Best Humidifiers Pictures

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Pentax Optio V20 Review

The competition for consumer dollars in the digital imaging industry is fierce and one of the major battle fronts is the ultracompact point-and-shoot camera class. It seems like new light-weight, stylish, pocketable little digicams with amazing feature sets are turning up almost weekly. Many of these diminutive digital cameras share fairly similar specifications so manufacturers really have to out-do themselves to attract any notice.

Pentax Optio V20

Miniaturization requires serious compromises in camera capabilities, but ultracompact digicams like the Pentax Optio V20 are usually excellent choices for casual shutterbugs and snapshooters who like to bring their camera along just about everywhere they go.

FEATURES OVERVIEW
FORM, FIT, AND FEEL
PERFORMANCE
IMAGE QUALITY
CONCLUSIONS
SPECIFICATIONS

FEATURES OVERVIEW

The elegantly stylish and ultra-slim (0.9 inches thick) Pentax Optio V20 provides a useful combination of features including 8.0 megapixel resolution, a 5x (36-180mm equivalent) optical zoom, and a face recognition mode with Smile Capture function and Blink Detection that's directly linked to both the V20's auto focus and auto exposure systems for sharp, colorful, accurately exposed portraits. Other tech specs include a 1/2.35-inch CCD image sensor, burst shooting at 1.4 fps, 51 MB of built-in memory, and a bright, sharp (230,000 pixel) wide viewing angle 3.0-inch LCD display.

The Pentax Optio V20 is an auto exposure only digicam with no conventional manual exposure capability. The V20 provides a fairly typical selection of shooting modes, including:

  • Auto: The camera automatically manages all exposure parameters; all the user has to do is point the camera and press the shutter button.
  • Program: The camera makes all exposure decisions, but users can subtly alter the look of their photos by lightening or darkening images via exposure compensation; they can also adjust white balance to better match ambient lighting, fine-tune sensitivity, and tweak color saturation.
  • Scene: The V20's scene modes produce dependably decent exposures in a broad variety of lighting situations. Scene mode options include: Portrait, Landscape, Flower, Natural Skin Tone, Surf & Snow, Sport, Pets, Kids, Food, Digital SR (shake reduction), Digital Panorama, and Digital Wide (composites two images to produce images with a wider field of view).
  • Voice Recording: Allows users to record short audio clips and associate them with images.
  • Movie: V20 users can record video clips (up to 2 GB in duration) at 640x480/30 fps. The camera can also record at lower resolutions and slower frame rates.

Pentax includes a D-LI78 lithium-ion rechargeable battery and charger, USB and A/V cables, a wrist strap, a 32 MB "starter" SD card, a software CD-ROM, a "quick start" guide, and a printed user's manual in the box with the camera.

For a detailed listing of specifications and features, please refer to the specifications table found at the bottom of the review.


FORM, FIT, AND FEEL

The Pentax Optio V20 is an auto-exposure only ultracompact point-and-shoot digicam. Not surprisingly, it looks, feels, and operates like most other ultracompact point-and-shoot digicams.

Styling and Build Quality
Pentax's Optio series have been all over the map in terms of design and engineering, but the pocket-sized V20 features a fairly conventional design with a definite "retro" look.

Pentax Optio V20

Build quality is very good – this diminutive digicam is tough enough to survive most of the rigors of modern life – but dust, water, and rough treatment should be avoided.

Pentax Optio V20

Ergonomics and Interface

The diminutive V20 weighs in at 4.6 ounces with battery and SD card and the physical dimensions are 3.9 in x 2.2 in x 0.9 inches. The user interface is uncomplicated. The front deck is uncluttered, with a small raised grip bar finger rest.

Pentax Optio V20

The top deck features a small on/off button and a large shutter button with the zoom control ring at its base. The back deck is dominated by the large 3.0-inch LCD screen.

Pentax Optio V20

The back deck also holds the four-way controller the Face Priority/Smile Capture mode switch, the menu button, the Green Mode button (which can be programmed to perform a variety of functions – I set it up as direct access to the exposure compensation mode) and the playback/review button. The V20's menus are simple and direct, easy to navigate, and logically laid-out – and all controls are logically placed and easily accessed. Operation quickly becomes intuitive.

In short, most users will have no difficulty using the V20 right out of the box.

Display/Viewfinder


I much prefer optical viewfinders for framing and composing images because, unlike LCD screens, OVF narrow the photographer's vision of the world by eliminating everything except the approximate field of view of the camera's lens. The Pentax Optio V20 (like many current digicams, especially in the ultracompact class) doesn't provide an optical viewfinder, however, so all composition and framing chores must be accomplished via the LCD screen.

Pentax Optio V20

The V20's wide viewing angle (170 degrees both horizontally and vertically) 3.0-inch LCD dominates the camera's rear deck. LCD images are bright, sharp (230,000 dots), hue-accurate, and fluid. The LCD gains up in dim lighting, and users can manually adjust screen brightness as well. The LCD screen shows approximately 100 percent of the image frame and is useable in bright outdoor lighting. The LCD info/status display provides all information that the V20's target audience is likely to need.


PERFORMANCE

The V20's no-nonsense approach makes it an almost ideal first digicam: an excellent choice for family shutterbugs, a very good choice for space/weight concious travelers who want a tough, "go anywhere" camera, and a super selection for casual photograhers and snap-shooters who want a camera that produces dependably decent pictures in point-and-shoot mode.

Timing and Shutter Lag

Timing and shutter lag results from the DCR test lab paint a positive picture of the V20's performance. First and foremost, pre-focused shutter lag shouldn't be a problem: the V20's pre-focused shutter lag – the time elapsed between pushing the shutter button after locking focus and exposure on a particular subject and when the shutter actually fires – is actually a bit snappier than some of the competition. Whereas the Canon PowerShot SD1100 IS (when pre-focused) can capture a shot 0.1 seconds after the shutter button is pressed, the V20 does it in 0.06 seconds

The V20's shutter/focus lag from scratch (without pre-focus) is 0.4 seconds, which is pretty fast all things considered. In the test lab the V20 had a tendency when focusing from scratch to default to Pan Focus (hyperfocal distance mode – the camera selects the aperture that provides the broadest focus zone), which can result in shots that leave the primary subject out of focus, but I didn't have problem with this when shooting in "real world" situations.

The V20's boot-up cycle is between 4 and 5 seconds. In continuous shooting mode, the V20 can capture 2 frames in 1.3 seconds (1.6 fps) at maximum resolution before stopping to clear the buffer. The only serious performance slowdown is the shot-to-shot times, which are abysmally slow at 3.5 to 4.0 seconds between shots – even in good light with high-contrast subjects.

Pentax Optio V20

The above shot of an exuberant skateboarder nicely illustrates just how quick the V20 is when shooting action. The camera was pre-focused on the cooler and then re-framed.

Lens and Zoom


The V20 sports a surprisingly good f/3.5-5.6, 36-180mm equivalent zoom. When the camera is powered up, the lens automatically telescopes out of the body. When the camera is powered down, the lens is retracted into the camera body and a built-in lens cover closes over the front element. The Optio V20's 5x zoom isn't as fast as most of its competition (f/3.5 maximum aperture, versus many f/2.8 cameras), but then much of the V20's competition is still offering 3x zooms.

Ultracompact digicam zooms generally start at around the equivalent of 35mm, so a true wide-angle perspectivev(great for group shots in tight indoor venues and traditional landscapes) with ultracompacts is a real rarity. The V20's lens produces colors that are hue accurate and fairly neutral, though native contrast is a bit on the hard side.

Finally, the V20's minimum focusing distance (in macro mode) is 4 inches, close enough for genral close-ups and auction site shots, but not tight enough for dramatic bugs and flowers shots.

Pentax Optio V20

This blooming Tiger Lilly was large enough to fill the frame at the V20's 4 inch minimum focusing distace.

Auto Focus


The V20 features Pentax's 9-point contrast detection AF system. The camera analyzes the scene in front of the zoom, calculates camera to subject distance to determine which of the 9 AF points is closest to the primary subject, and then automatically locks focus on that AF point (closest subject priority), even when the subject is not centered in the viewfinder. AF is consistently quick and accurate.

The V20 provides an impressive suite of options for portrait shooters – Face Recognition AF (which is linked automatically to the AE system), Smile Capture (which recognizes smiles and automatically trips the shutter when a smile is detected on the subject), and Blink Detection (which detects blinking during exposure and alerts the user to shoot again).

The Optio V20's face detection AF seems to work pretty well, but I can't say the same for its Smile Capture mode. In Smile Capture mode the V20 automatically trips the shutter when the camera detects a smile – at least in theory. In practice the camera often fires the shutter without warning and, somewhat disconcertingly, even when the subject isn't smiling. As best I could tell, the Blink Detection mode seems to be nothing more than a gimmick – I couldn't get it to work for me even with a cooperative model. I got a couple of closed eyes shots, but no re-shoot warning from the V20.

Flash

The V20's built-in multi-mode (on, off, auto, and red-eye reduction) flash is an adequate, but very basic and slightly underpowered supplemental lighting tool. Like all ultracompact digicams, the V20's built-in flash is positioned very close to and on essentially the same plane as the lens, so red-eye will be a problem. Shooters can rely on the red-eye reduction mode or defeat red-eye by disabling the flash and shooting without supplemental lighting – naturally lit portraits always look better than flash lit portraits anyway.

Pentax claims the maximum flash range is 14.4 feet using auto ISO, but realistically anything beyond 8 or 9 feet is going to be fairly dark unless shot against very light colored backgrounds or with lots of ambient lighting.

Up close, the V20's on-board flash produces images that are harsh lit with burnt out detail, but at slightly longer distances flash-lit shots show hue accurate color and decent detail capture. Full power flash recycle is 6.6 seconds. Flash recycle times averaged 1.9 seconds.

Image Stabilization

The V20's most troubling ommision is its lack of either optical or mechanical image stabilization – a very a useful feature that reduces blur in captured images by quickly and precisely shifting a lens element in the zoom or rapidly shifting the image sensor to compensate for involuntary camera shake. Pentax does provide what they call Digital Shake Reduction. DSR boosts sensitivity (to as high as ISO 6400), but higher sensitivity inevitably leads to higher levels of image noise, less punch, and the loss of fine image detail.

Battery Life
The V20 is powered by a proprietary Pentax D-LI78 Lithium Ion rechargeable battery. Pentax claims that the V20 with a fully charged battery is good for up to 200 exposures.

Pentax Optio V20

I didn't keep track of exposures, so I can't quibble with Pentax's numbers, but based on my experiences with the camera, 125 to 150 shots is probably more realistic. The included charger needs about 90 minutes to fully charge the battery.


IMAGE QUALITY


In the final analysis, only two camera assessment criteria really matter – how well does the imaging device meet the needs of its target audience and how good are the images it produces. As noted, the V20 is sturdy, stylish, small enough to be dropped in a pocket, incredibly easy to use.

In terms of image quality, the V20 is also remarkably consistent – auto exposure and auto focus systems dependably produce very good to excellent images for casual use. Image quality outdoors is consistently very good to exellent. Interior shots (in decent light) are better than most of the V20's competition. Exposure is spot on in most lighting, AF is quick, focus is acceptably sharp, and colors are accurate.

Exposure, Processing, and Color


The V20's auto exposure system is impressively accurate and in good lighting the camera dependably produces very good to excellent images. Highlights are sometimes blown out – especially in contrasty scenes – and shadow detail is sometimes lost in the darker areas of dimly lit scenes.

Pentax Optio V20

Images are consistently sharp in the center of the frame, but corners tend to be slightly soft. Colors are hue accurate, bright, vibrant, and fairly neutral. Overall, however, the V20's target audience will likely be very happy with this diminutive digicam's image quality. Images are crisp and colors are bright and bold, but not garishly oversaturated – like much of the V20's competition.

The following indoor portrait nicely illustrates the V20's capabilities in less than perfect lighting. High-ISO capture presents good color and acceptable, print-ready detail – if not perfection at 100 percent.

Pentax Optio V20

Pentax Optio V20

Likewise, the above informal outdoor portrait nicely demonstrates the V20's capabilities outdoors. The subject is very pale, yet the V20 captured some nice detail even under fairly bright lighting

In terms of processing options, the V20 allows for saturation, sharpness, and contrast to be fine-tuned in three steps (minus one/plus one for each value, plus the default/zero setting). The differences in final image look can often be dramatic.

Pentax Optio V20

Saturation -1

Pentax Optio V20

Saturation +1

In the above shots, saturation was set to a value of minus one and then plus one, covering a range of image toning from neutrally muted to extremely vivid.

White Balance


The Pentax V20 provides users with an adequate selection of white balance options, including Auto, Daylight, Shade, Tungsten, Fluorescent, and Manual WB. The V20's Auto WB mode produces dependably hue-accurate and well-exposed images in a broad variety of lighting situations. The one hitch is the expected one: indoor shooting under incandescent light using Auto WB

Pentax Optio V20

Auto White Balance, 3200K incandescent light


Lens Faults

The V20's zoom is surprisingly good – it is sharp, contrasty, and exhibits no visible vignetting (dark corners) or pincushion distortion. There is some minor barrel distortion (straight lines bow out from the center) at the wide-angle end of the range and some minor softness in the corners, but overall the V20's zoom is noticeably better than average. Chromatic aberration (purple fringing) is remarkably well controlled and, excepting extreme lighting situations, shouldn't be problem.

Sensitivity and Noise
The V20 provides an excellent range of sensitivity options for an ultracompact digicam, including an auto mode and user-selectable settings for ISO 80 to ISO 6400 (with the highest two sensitivity settings available only at a reduced resolution).

Pentax Optio V20
ISO 80
Pentax Optio V20
ISO 80
Pentax Optio V20
ISO 100
Pentax Optio V20
ISO 100
Pentax Optio V20
ISO 200
Pentax Optio V20
ISO 200
Pentax Optio V20
ISO 400
Pentax Optio V20
ISO 400
Pentax Optio V20
ISO 800
Pentax Optio V20
ISO 800
Pentax Optio V20
ISO 1600
Pentax Optio V20
ISO 1600
Pentax Optio V20
ISO 3200
Pentax Optio V20
ISO 3200
Pentax Optio V20
ISO 6400
Pentax Optio V20
ISO 6400

Whether shooting outdoors in bright light or indoors in lower light the V20 delivers very good to excellent quality (essentially noise free images) at ISO 80 and ISO 100. Noise levels begin to rise after ISO 200. ISO 400 images are pretty good, but show some minor loss of detail and slight but visible noise. Higher sensitivities produce correspondingly higher levels of noise.

Additional Sample Images

Pentax Optio V20

Pentax Optio V20

Pentax Optio V20


CONCLUSIONS

Pentax has been producing capable but generally unexciting film cameras and SLR optics for more than half a century. Since the beginning of the digital imaging revolution they've has focused lots of corporate attention on developing and marketing ultracompact, feature-rich, easy-to-use, and innovative Optio series digicams. Pentax digicams have never been sales leaders, in large part, because unlike many of their competitors, they've failed to develop a comprehensive camera design philosophy: Canon's small cameras, for instance, all share a signature "look" and very similar operation, giving the line a cohesiveness that has been lacking for the Optio models. But if the snappy little Optio V20 is an indication of a new design philosophy at Pentax that could change.

What makes the V20 exceptional in a flood of generally competent but mostly uninspired mini-cams is its capability as a digital image-maker. The Pentax Option V20 consistently and dependably produces first-rate images for snapshot use, all controls and access to features are imminently logical, and operation is intuitive and remarkably easy. The super capable little retro-minimalist V20 is, in my opinion and despite its slow maximum aperture and the lack of image stabilization, one of the best digital cameras in its class.

Pros:

  • Excellent image quality
  • Very good lens
  • Relatively quick
  • Simple to operate

Cons:

  • Expensive
  • No image stabilization
  • Slow maximum aperture

SPECIFICATIONS: Pentax Optio V20

Sensor 8.0 megapixel, 1/2.35" CCD
Lens/Zoom 5x (36-180mm) Pentax zoom lens, f/3.5-5.6
LCD/Viewfinder 3.0", 230K dot wide-angle view TFT LCD
Sensitivity ISO 80-6400
Shutter Speed 4-1/2000 seconds
Shooting Modes Auto Picture, Program, Scene, Movie
Scene Presets Night Scene, Landscape, Flower, Natural Skin Tone, Portrait, Surf and Snow, Sports, Kids, Pet, Food, Panorama, Digital Wide Angle, Digital Shake Reduction
White Balance Settings Auto, Daylight, Shade, Tungsten, Fluorescent, Manual
Metering Modes Multi, Center, Spot
Focus Modes Nine-Point AF, Face Detection AF, Spot AF, Tracking AF, Manual Focus, Auto Macro, Macro
Drive Modes Normal, Continuous, Frame Composite, Self Timer
Flash Modes Auto, Flash On, Flash Off, Red Eye
Self Timer Settings
10 seconds, 2 seconds, Off
Memory Formats SD, SDHC
Internal Memory
51 MB
File Formats JPEG, AVI
Max. Image Size 3264x2448
Max. Video Size
640x480, 30 fps
Zoom During Video Not Specified
Battery Rechargeable lithium-ion, 200 shots
Connections USB 2.0, AV output, DC input
Additional Features Face Detection, Blink Detection, Smile Capture


Source: Digital Camera Review