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Pentax Optio RS1500 Digital Camera Review$149.95
The Pentax Optio RS1500 produced an average color error value of 3.8 with oversaturation of approximately 109% in our lab tests. What does that mean to you? Probably next to nothing.
The RS1500 is an aggressively priced low-end model, with style and functionality geared toward the beginner. So if you're in the market for this point-and-shoot, we'd guess you're less interested in the uncorrected delta value of our accuracy tests, and more interested in how everyday photos are going to come out.
For the entry-level user, accurate color means human subjects will appear more flattering. Most images will look less like overly-processed stock photos, and more like what you see with your eyes. For this reason, color performance is one of the most important metrics for all users, regardless of experience. More on how we test color.
The RS1500's score is actually pretty solid, but the worst inaccuracies were found in blues and flesh-tones. Still, the results exceed the comparably-priced Casio Exilim EX-S200 and almost equal Panasonic's DMC-ZS3, which costs twice as much.
The Pentax's color modes and scene modes are lumped together into one large "mode" menu. This isn't preferable, and we would've liked to see color modes in their own menu, with the ability to be adjusted separately.
Surprisingly, "Blue Sky" produced the most accurate colors in our test, whereas a mode like "Natural" or "Neutral" typically does so. This may have been an anomaly in our testing, since the results were nearly identical to the "Natural Skin Tone" and "Program" modes. Program is much more customizable than others in this camera, so--given the performance similarity--we used it for the remainder of our tests.