PMA was the platform for the launch of four new digital compacts from Vivitar, including an underwater camera and a 10-million-pixel model. Meanwhile, a European spokesman has outlined Vivitar’s plans to take on major players in the 5-6MP arena and confirmed the upcoming launch of a 12MP model later this year.

The company which claims to hold a large slice of the 3MP compact camera market in the UK is now planning to raise its game by winning market share from big name players in the 5-6MP category, according to Sadeq Asharia, the account manager for Vivitar Europe who spoke to AP at this week’s PMA trade show in Las Vegas.

Vivitar’s new range includes the 6MP ViviCam 6385u which comes in a ‘super slim’ (19.1mm) body with features such as a 2.5in monitor and a 3x optical zoom. This is due in the UK at the end of March.

A 6MP underwater model also made its debut at PMA. Vivitar claims that the ViviCam 6200w is waterproof down to 10m. It includes a 2in screen and features such as a Sea mode, exposure compensation, manual white balance control and AA battery compatibility. The 6200w is due on sale in the UK from this week.

Also among the newcomers is the 7MP ViviCam 7388s – sporting a 35-105mm (35mm equivalent) lens and a 3in LCD screen (230,000 pixel resolution), plus an MP3 music player.

This is now on sale in the UK, ahead of its availability in the United States.

The California-based company’s line-up also now includes a 10MP called the X625, featuring a 6x optical zoom and a ‘retro’ pop-up flash. Further details on this camera were not available at the time of writing but we understand it will go on sale in the UK in April.

Since last November Vivitar has been a wholly-owned subsidiary of Syntax-Brillian Corporation, a digital entertainment firm which is based in Arizona.

Aiming to appeal to the mass consumer market Vivitar’s cameras are available from many UK high street stores, including Argos and Tesco.