Question about Pentax Optio WP

I reviewed some past threads on cameras from the pnet archives. The Pentax Optio WP and its predecessor, the Optio WR43 were well thought of by pnetters.

My Canon A20 having just died (drowned during a brief “splash” last week), I liked the idea of a water resistant camera, so the Optio is a prime candidate. I liked the older optio WR43 for its viewfinder and AA batteries, which are almost universally available (and who needs another proprietary charger). I’ve been assuming I could find a WR43 lurking in the supply chain somewhere. Pentax has phased them out.

What’s stopping me at the moment is the old Optios don’t have a fitting for tripod mounting. I used the tripod a few times a year with the A20. Not often, but when you want it, you want it.

Can one of you folks using the Optio WP, which I see is now offered in a WPi model, tell me, does it have a tripod mounting hole?

And do you regret not having a viewfinder? With the A20, for shots in bright light, the display screen was useless to me. Thus, I’m concerned about no viewfinder, although it does seem to be a sweet camera.


Did you like the A20?
I’ll make you a sweet deal on a barely used (never on the water) A70 - with a never used Canon dive housing that allows full functionality. Much more waterproof than the Optio, uses AA, can mount on tripod…

Pretty sure I have original boxes for both, all manuals, software, cables, 256 MB card, etc.

Only real downside is it’s only 3 megapixel (enough for most uses) and bulkier than the tiny Optio. Camera’s not big at all, but housing fattens it up a bit.

like it
yes, the wp has a tripod hole which I use quite a bit when photographing fishing flies in less than ideal lighting. I don’t miss the viewfinder at all. Maybe I will on a really really bright day sometime but so far the screen has been just fine for me. The screen is easier to see in the daylight than the Nikon screens I’ve used before. Good luck making your decision.

Optio WR - yes for tripod
I have the older 4 megapixel model with viewfinder that takes the AA batteries, and yes, it has a screw hole in the bottom for a tripod.

Optio WP
Yep to the tripod mounting hole. The battery is proprietary and doesn’t like the cold, but lasts a good long time if you remember to top it up before heading out. I’m having trouble with the lack of viewfinder, but my eyesight isn’t what it never was. No big deal.

I’m very happy with it, and especially like being able to grab it and shoot without fumbling with dry boxes. I recently stuck a small piece of chamois under my deck lines, and use it to wipe the lens occasionally.

A20 was good, had some weaknesses
I used the A20 since 2001 and took a couple thousand pictures with it. I liked it (love the one you are with) despite having issues:

“Think” time for it to focus and adjust was a little on the long side.

Didn’t handle motion real well, in either the subject or the photographer.

Especially needed to be held steady, which made it difficult to shoot with from the boat, unless the water was very calm.

Otherwise I was happy with that camera. Only 2.1 MP but I was just telling Scott B. I’m not enamored with mega pixels. The Canon A20 was a 2.1, I have pictures that were cropped and then professionally printed in 8x10 and came out as well as 35mm, imo. Anything going on the web or to email, I end up downsizing anyway. Canon’s current $200 model is the A520 and it makes 4MP. Again, just my o., but that’s twice what I’m used to, and I see the main advantage as being able to crop away 75% of the picture and still have a MP of resolution to blow up to the size you need.

Check your email regards “sweet deal.”


Thank all of you for the info.
Sure like the idea of being able to keep the camera handy instead of in a dry bag. Soooo, much easier to take pictures that way. That was the downfall of my A20, I just tucked it into the chest pocket of my paddling jacket a little bit before I went, “wooeeahh…” splash.

Thank you for replying. The information is very helpful.