The Pentax Optio RS1000 is a "well-specified entry-level compact camera with a clever twist," says Gavin Stoker at PhotographyBlog.com. It comes with swappable faceplates that can be customized to suit each user. The camera ships with 11 designed skins, but Pentax gives you the option of creating your own using the included tracing stencil or the downloadable templates from the Pentax Skins Gallery. The camera also comes with a SkinIt gift card, which is redeemable for a design at the SkinIt website, though Richard Baguley at DigitalCameraInfo.com says "the more exciting thing to do is to make your own."
Beneath the whimsical exterior and budget price is a 14-megapixel point-and-shoot that features a 4x optical-zoom lens (27.5 mm to 110 mm for suitable wide-angle coverage), a 3-inch LCD screen and the ability to record in 720p HD video, but sound is only in mono and optical zoom can't be used while you're recording. Nevertheless, Cliff Smith at Trusted Reviews.com finds video quality "surprisingly good, even in low light." But unlike the Canon PowerShot SD1400 IS, you can't hook it up to an HDTV to watch movies. It does, however, feature Auto Picture mode, which automatically selects the best settings for your subjects, or you can choose your own from among 15 scene modes such as landscape, sunset and blue sky. Shooting performance impresses critics, but image quality gets mixed results. Stoker finds the colors "well-saturated," while Smith describes them as "pale and washed out."
We found expert reviews at PhotographyBlog.com and TrustedReviews.com, where the Pentax Optio RS1000 receives thorough analysis. Baguley sums up the RS1000's specs at DigitalCameraInfo.com, and Amazon.com posts an even mix of positive and negative reviews.
Despite its "bright facade," the Pentax Optio RS 1000 will ultimately disappoint anyone drawn to it, Cliff Smith concludes. Performance is decent, but low-light ability and image quality fare worse than other budget cameras.
Review: Pentax Optio RS1000 Review, Cliff Smith, Nov. 26, 2010
Gavin Stoker considers the Pentax Optio RS1000 an "inexpensive yet stylish" compact, but he warns that while it's suitable for "occasional snapping at parties," the RS1000 remains a basic point-and-shoot. Nevertheless, better than expected image quality, HD video and optical zoom make it a capable low-budget contender.
Review: Pentax Optio RS1000 Review, Gavin Stoker, Dec. 10, 2010
In this eight-part review, Richard Baguley gives his initial impressions of the Pentax Optio RS1000, providing a detailed breakdown of the RS1000's specs. But since he hadn't yet tested the camera's video and image quality, his final assessment discusses only design features rather than performance.
Review: Pentax RS1000 -- First Impressions Review, Richard Baguley, Sept. 25, 2010
The handful of reviews for the Pentax Optio RS1000 are split, with half giving it good marks for video quality, portability and the swappable design while the other half deride its poor image quality and cheap, plastic feel. A few users also complain about the battery compartment's flimsy door.
Review: Pentax Optio RS1000, Contributors to Amazon.com