The camera should be in stores in July
Since the release of the Pentax *ist D in 2003, the company has been targeting digital SLR newbies--those who may be frustrated with the limitations of a point-and-shoot, but still frightened by the controls of a pro SLR. Here's the newest entrant to that line: the 6.1MP *ist DL ($800 street, with 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 Pentax lens). At 16.6 ounces (without card or battery), it's about an nounce lighter than the *ist DS, but has a larger 2.5-inch LCD screen (up from the 2 inches on the DS). Some controls have been lost in the update, such as the 3-point AF system (down from 11 on the DS), but the goal is to make the camera user-friendly. "If you find the DS intimidating," says a Pentax spokesperson, "now you have the DL." The camera should be in stores in July.