The Best of Pentax DSLR Cameras – 2017

Pentax is a Japanese company, which has been in the Optic lens, Camera space since the ‘50s. It has become a name to reckon with over time. Many photographers swear by the advanced technology that these cameras offer.

We look at the best of Pentax DSLR cameras and review each of them. It is not an easy task to choose the right camera. It has become a crowded space and the technical specifications are so minute. They are designed to suit various needs of the users.

Camera Model

Key features

Review Grade

Offer

Pentax K-1 Full Frame DSLR

Pentax K-1 Full Frame DSLR

  • Good Image quality
  • Travel friendly design
  • Quick Autofocus
  • Below average battery life
5 Stars (5 / 5) amazon-button-png-200

Pentax K-3II Pentax DSLR

Pentax K-3II Pentax DSLR

  • Dynamic detailing and range for better image quality
  • Sensor Shift improves image resolution in moving images
  • Improved Auto Focus
  • Slightly heavy design
4.5 Stars (4.5 / 5) amazon-button-png-200

Pentax K-S2 20MP DSLR

Pentax K-S2 20MP DSLR

  • Good value for money
  • In-built flash
  • Weather proof and dust proof
  • No touch screen
4.5 Stars (4.5 / 5) amazon-button-png-200

What are the features built into the best of Pentax DSLR Cameras?

We first understand the naunces of the top 3 cameras from Pentax and then conduct a suitability analysis. Below is a table depicting the features –

Pentax K-1 Full Frame

Basic Configuration

·       Sensor – 36.4MP AA Filter-less CMOS

·       Anti-Aliasing Filter

·       w/ 33AF points

·       Backward compatibility with APS-C lens

·       GPS/Electronic Compass/ Astro Tracer

·       Inbuilt WiFi

·       Display – Cross-tilt LCD

·       Weather proof

·       1080/60i video

·       LED illumination

Colors Available – Black

Styles available – Body Only

Configurations – Base

Pentax K-3II

Basic Configuration

·       Sensor–24MP APS-C sized CMOS

·       ISO range of 100-51200

·       GPS/Electronic Compass/ Astro Tracer

·       Body shake reduction function

·       Prime III image processor

·       FLU and SDX Memory card compatibility

·       Dual SD card slot

·       Inbuilt Wireless connectivity

Colors Available – Black

Styles available – Body Only

Configurations – Base

Pentax K-S2 20MP DSLR

Basic Configuration

·       Sensor –20 MP AA filter less APS-C CMOS

·       ISO –upto 51200

·       WiFi connectivity

·       Selfie mode button available

·       LCD Monitor (921K Dots)

·       Weatherproof, Dust proof, Cold proof

·       Body shake reduction

·       4K interval movie capture

·       1080P h.264 HD video

Colors Available

Black

Black with racing stripe

Black / Orange

Desert Beige

Forest Green

Stone Gray

White

White with racing stripe

White / Lime

Styles available

Body Only

18 – 50 mm lens

18 – 50 mm lens and 50 – 200 mm

18 – 135 mm lens

Configurations – Base

Suitability Analysis

Pentax K-1 Full Frame

This is the first of Pentax DSLR cameras which offers a full frame sensor with stabilisation of image. It is a magnesium alloy construction, thus extensively sealed. Thus making it weather proof. It is a travel friendly camera design. It is counted among the high-end cameras, but it is of a reasonable price.

The sensor shift modes are pretty impressive. It includes Horizon Correction, the sensor automatically rotates if camera is slightly off levels. The astro tracer and GPS can be used while clicking pictures of stars / space. It helps cancelling out the Earth’s rotation movement.

The camera has introduced a new AF module called SAFOX 12 which has 33fps, with a majority of 25fps being cross-type. This helps improve higher precision. The sensor metering enables scene analysis, subject detection to yield better focus.

Pros

  • Good Image quality
  • Travel friendly design
  • Quick Autofocus
  • Low light performance is decent
  • Reasonable price

Cons

  • No built in flash
  • Reasonably slow startup
  • Below average battery life

Conclusion

It is the first full frame sensor from Pentax DSLR Cameras. This is a good weather proof camera. The price is reasonable, which makes it a good value for money. It has garnered positive reviews for it’s clever sensor shift technology. There is scope for improvement in the image quality department.

Read the full review HERE

Pentax K-3II

This Pentax DSLR Camera comes with an improved image stabilization system. It has a new Pixel shift resolution which reduces false color. Both these feature helps shoot sharp images. It retains the 24 MP sensor, 27 point AF system from it’s predecessor.

The new sensor shift IS promises 4.5 stops of shake reduction. This improves the quality of image in moving shots. It has the Horizon correction feature, built in GPS and gyro-sensor which improves auto focus. The built-in flash is missing in this model.

The anti-aliasing mechanism is unique, it can be turned on or off, providing for high resolution abilities. It has a Prime III processor, which works to enable high resolution imaging with lower lighting. It’s performance in low light is pretty impressive. However, the JPEG processing is quite flawed. The shutter speed is also quite low.

Pros

  • Dynamic detailing and range for better image quality
  • Sensor Shift improves image resolution in moving images
  • Improved Auto Focus
  • Good OIS (optical image stabilisation)

Cons

  • No built in flash
  • Slightly heavy design
  • JPEG processing is flawed 

Conclusion

If one is fond of capturing the night sky, then look no further. Despite it’s shoddy JPEG processing, the image stabilisation feature is unique. It is a good camera for capturing moving shots. The design is slightly bulky, however, it offers the resilience of high end cameras. Despite it’s bulkiness, it is an ideal outdoor camera, with it’s weather proof and dust proof feature. It is definitely one of the better viewfinders at the price range.

Read the full review HERE

Pentax K-S2 20MP DSLR

This is an extremely stylish, durable and compact camera. It has a weather resistant design making it a travel friendly. It is capable of shooting in a range of conditions, it is comfortable upto ISO 51,200.

The sensor-shift feature reduces shaking of image, thereby providing sharp image quality. This camera model provides 30fps in case of full HD video 1080p shooting. It also features Advanced HDR and Clarity Enhancement modes. This provides scope for improvement of images shot. It is a reasonably priced camera for the features it offers.

This is considered an excellent candidate for street photography and sports photography. However, it may not be a great camera for landscape and portrait shooting. It has a KAF2 lens mount, it also have the backward compatibility with all K mount lenses. It has the anti – aliasing feature which improves the sharpness in the images captured.

Pros

  • Good value for money
  • In-built flash
  • Weather proof and dust proof

Cons

  • Low battery life
  • Slightly bulky
  • No touch screen

Conclusion

This is another Pentax DSLR Camera which is good for shooting the night sky. It has advance features which help improving the images captured. The JPEG processing is better than it’s counterparts. This DSLR Camera provides a shooting life of 410 shots as per CIPA standards. This is considerably lower than 888 shots provided by cameras with similar features from competitors.

Read the full review HERE

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