Ricoh Unveils WG-80 Outdoor Camera Optimized For Under Water Shooting
Ricoh introduced this week the latest model in its popular WG-series outdoor point-and-shoot camera line specifically optimized for underwater photography / Full HD videography.
The Ricoh WG-80 is a compact ruggedly-built waterproof camera outfitted with a 5x optical zoom lens (equivalent to 28-140mm 35mm range) and including a bright, integrated LED ring light.
It features a back-illuminated 16 megapixel CMOS sensor and has a light sensitivity rating of up to ISO 6400. The built-in 5-25mm 5x optical zoom lens has an f-stop range of F3.5-5.5.
The point-and-shoot camera will be available in a choice of black or orange bodies, and will hit stores in mid-June at a $329.95 suggested retail price.
The WG-80 can capture video at up to 1080/30p resolution with files stored in H.264 digtial compression format.
Optimized for underwater work, the Ricoh WG-80 has a waterproof rating to 46 feet (14 meters) for up to 2 hours of continuous operation. It includes underwater capture modes for both photos and video that adjusts the color balance and contrast to account for different lighting a blue-light color tinting from the effects of sunlight and water.
The underwater picture/video setting modes are said to keep images sharp while enhancing scenes with shades of red that are typically filtered out by surrounding water. The camera also effectively compensates for the loss of contrast caused by the diffusion of light in such conditions.
The camera does not include optical image stabilization, but offers electronic image stabilization using Pixel Track SR, Digital SR and Movie SR. Pixel Track SR and Movie SR modes provide traditional electronic image stabilization correction to keep images sharp by countering camera shake in photos and videos, respectively. The Digital SR mode boosts the ISO to achieve a faster shutter speed in low-light scenes, Ricoh said.
The camera is equipped with a rear-mounted 2.7-inch 230,000-dot LCD display that displays shots and settings navigation menus. The screen includes an anti-reflective coating to reduce sun glare while an “Outdoor View Setting” will adjust screen brightness level to compensate for available light.
Ricoh includes a six-LED ring light around the lens to optimize close-ups and macro shots. The camera even includes a “Digital Microscope” mode. The LED lights output five levels of brightness intensity.
Ricoh said the Ricoh WG-80 is an excellent take anywhere camera, offer shock resistance from a height of 1.6m (5 feet), dust resistance, crush resistance and freeze resistance down to -10ºC (14ºF).
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By Greg Tarr
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