Summary

Our Score

5/10

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Pentax Optio M30 - Test shots - ISO performance

A range of test shots are shown over the next few pages. Here, the full size image at the minimum ISO setting has been reduced for bandwidth purposes to let you see the full image, and a series of crops taken from original full resolution images at a range of ISO settings have been placed below it in order for you to gain an appreciation of the overall quality.

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/94/0c72da/d6c8/4349-PentaxM30ISOmain.jpg

This is the re-sized test shot for 64 ISO. I don't normally include a caption with this shot, but I felt it was necessary in this case. The shot was taken at a range of approximately 50cm using a medium zoom setting. As you can see there is noticeable pincushion distortion and exceptionally bad blurring away from the centre of the frame.

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/94/ddbbf3/27d7/4349-PentaxM30ISO64.jpg

Whatever the lens distortion problems, at the centre of the frame the level of detail at 640 ISO is good, with no visible noise.

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/94/de7ee6/ea13/4349-PentaxM30ISO100.jpg

At 100 ISO there is also no visible noise, and the picture is clear and sharp.

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/94/22fc4c/0260/4349-PentaxM30ISO200.jpg

At 200 ISO there are still no image noise problems, and the level of detail is high.

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/94/d95470/d69b/4349-PentaxM30ISO400.jpg

At 400 ISO there is some visible noise, and the level of fine detail is noticeably reduced, but picture quality is still very good.

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/94/234c28/9e68/4349-PentaxM30ISO800.jpg

At 800 ISO the noise reduction system is still just about coping, and although there is some colour distortion and loss of fine detail the image is still perfectly usable for small prints.

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/94/85017e/6831/4349-PentaxM30ISO1600.jpg

At 1600 ISO there is a sudden drop-off in picture quality, with a lot of noise and loss of detail, but the picture is actually still not too bad and would make an acceptable 6 x 4 print.

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/94/829661/132a/4349-PentaxM30ISO3200.jpg

As with many cameras, the highest ISO setting of 3200 is really not recommended. There is a lot of noise and not much fine detail, and even on a small print the picture would look grainy.

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