Optoacoustic ultrasound (OPUS) is a promising hybridized technique for simultaneous acquisition of functional and morphological data. The optical specificity of optoacoustic leverages the diagnostic aptitude of ultrasonography beyond anatomy. However, this integration has been rarely practiced for volumetric imaging. The challenge lies in the effective imaging probes that preserve the functionality of both modalities. The potentials of a sparse annular array for volumetric OPUS imaging are theoretically investigated. In order to evaluate and optimize the performance characteristics of the probe, series of analysis in the framework of system model matrix was carried out. The two criteria of voxel crosstalk and eigenanalysis have been employed to unveil information about the spatial sensitivity, aliasing, and number of definable spatial frequency components. Based on these benchmarks, the optimal parameters for volumetric handheld probe are determined. In particular, the number, size, and the arrangement of the elements and overall aperture dimension were investigated. The result of the numerical simulation suggests that the segmented-annular array of 128 negatively focused elements with 1λ × 20λ size, operating at 5-MHz central frequency showcases a good agreement with the physical requirement of both imaging systems. We hypothesize that these features enable a high-throughput volumetric passive/active ultrasonic imaging system with great potential for clinical applications.