Pentax's new ZX-7 offers compact size, solid performance, ease of use, and impressive capability. The ZX-7 offers the photographer both auto and manual focus. The camera has three autofocus (AF) points for sensing the subject and will automatically switch to predictive AF mode if it detects subject movement. The AF system is focus priority, so the shutter is locked until the camera focuses on something, virtually guaranteeing that you won't shoot a picture that isn't focused. If you prefer to use the manual focus setting, the AF status light will glow when you have achieved correct focus.
The built-in flash uses spotbeam technology, which assists the AF system when focusing in dim-light situations. The system is capable of assisting the AF down to light levels of the current standard for assist technology.
The ZX-7 also offers a snap-in mode, which only functions with non-AF lenses. The camera will fire when your subject enters the range you have chosen and is in focus. This feature is perfect for an action subject, such as horse racing. You can choose a proper background and take the picture when your subject passes a specific point.
The Pentax ZX-7 comes with a built-in TTL exposure meter that breaks the image into six zones. Linked to the AF system, ISO settings range from 25 to 5,000 and are set automatically via DX coding. Manually, you can set ISOs from 6 to 6,400. In addition to auto mode, the ZX-7 offers the photographer programmable AE, portrait, landscape, action, close-up, and night modes. The built-in TTL flash unit covers a field of view equal to a 28mm lens and is capable of daylight sync, slow sync, and red-eye reduction. Maximum flash sync is 1/100 second.
The camera allows for shutter speeds from 30 to 1/2,000 seconds. The built-in motor drive is capable of up to two frames per second and has a self-timer with 12-second delay. Quartz dating allows you to document your photographic memories.
The Pentax ZX-7 is a solid camera with a full load of advanced automatic features for those individuals making the transition from point-and-shoot to 35mm SLR technology.