If you're heading to the beach this winter, you might want to pack the Pentax
Optio W20 or the Olympus Stylus 720SW in your beach bag to capture your
On the Playback side, both cameras have some cool extras. The Olympus has slideshow mode, with canned music, redeye fix, resizing, black and white conversion, along with sepiatoning, some silly frames that can be added to images, postcard-like font effects which can be superimposed on the images, brightness and saturation adjustments, and the very interesting Calendar feature, which takes selected images and adds a calendar template around them. You choose the image and the month and you've got a personalized calendar.
There is also Calendar display, which isn't the same thing as calendar creation. This playback mode groups photos by date of capture on a monthly display, which is handy for remembering which day you shot which images.
The Pentax also has a slideshow with transition and sound effects. There's a resize and crop option, photo filter effects for warming up, cooling down, sepiatoning and grayscale conversion, along with a "fisheye" filter, which is funny, considering the lens has a good bit of barrel distortion at wide angle anyways. Movie edit can pull a frame and convert it to a still image, split videos, and combine videos. Pentax also has its share of silly picture frames, redeye fix, and voice annotation.
Two built-in functions of playback mode are great extras that more cameras should incorporate: Image/Sound Copy, which allows the user to swap data between the internal memory and the removable SD card without having to hook and dump and reimport tethered to a computer, and Image Recovery, for rescuing images which were accidentally deleted.
In playback mode, the Olympus is noticeably slow when scrolling between shots -- longer than a second between each shot. The Pentax, while not instantaneous, throws a low-resolution image up first, which is quickly overwritten with the full-quality preview, and does both of these operations faster than the Olympus can scroll from one image to the next.
Both cameras, due to their superslim designs, use proprietary Li-Ion rechargeable batteries, which charge independently of the camera via supplied battery chargers. Also, because of the weatherproofing, there is no docking station with either camera, since this would necessitate more locking compartments to ensure seaworthiness.
On the subject of locking doors for waterproofing, the Olympus employs a smarter, one-touch system which seals the camera shut. To open the xD/battery compartment, just unclip the lock and the door swings open. The Pentax, on the other hand, has a two-step process for weathersealing. On land, it's not necessary to activate the lock mechanism, but the two-step design makes it much easier to accidentally forget to fully seal the camera prior to a swim, since there's little more than a tiny orange flash of color inside the lock switch to indicate if it is fully or only partially sealed.