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An extremely compact interchangeable-lens camera, Pentax's other mirrorless model features a 12.4-megapixel backlit CMOS sensor. The Q is the smallest mirrorless camera, with a 3-inch LCD monitor, 1080/30p full HD video and 5 fps shooting. Estimated Street Price: $649 (with 8.5mm "normal" lens).

For more versatility, the weather-sealed K-5 is a compact DSLR with the same sensor as the K-01, two RAW file formats, 7 fps shooting, 1080p video and excellent phase-detection AF. Estimated Street Price: $1,199.

Pentax K-01

(body only)

EXCELLENT IMAGE QUALITY: Featuring a newly developed 16.3-megapixel APS-C CMOS sensor similar to the highly rated one in the K-5 DSLR, along with a PRIME M imaging engine, the K-01 can deliver excellent still images and video. Normal ISO range is 100 to 12,800, expandable to 25,600. The K-01 can record files in JPEG and 12-bit DNG raw format, but doesn't provide the K-5's second (PEF) RAW file capability.

FULL HD VIDEO: The K-01 can do 1920x1080p full HD video at 30 and 24 fps; 1280x720p HD at 60, 30 and 24 fps; and 640x480 SD at 30 and 24 fps. A built-in microphone records stereo sound, and there's a jack for an external mic. Video format is MP4 with H.264 compression. You can adjust the shutter and aperture, and use the camera's sensor-shift stabilization for video. A video button provides instant start of recording. Maximum clip length is 25 minutes.

NEW-GENERATION HDR: Recent Pentax DSLRs have offered in-camera HDR capability, but the K-01 improves on it, allowing the user to choose among three exposure increments and the level of the effect (as well as Auto HDR). You can even do HDR shots handheld.
PENTAX K LENS MOUNT: Featuring the Pentax KAF2 lens mount, the K-01 can use just about any K-mount Pentax lens ever made, and even (via adapters) screw-mount and Pentax medium-format system lenses. The "kit" lens is a new Marc Newson-designed 40mm ƒ/2.8 ultraflat pancake type.
Pentax's first mirrorless, interchangeable-lens camera was the Q, the smallest mirrorless model, due in large part to its compact-camera-size backlit CMOS sensor. The second mirrorless model, the K-01 features a larger APS-C sensor and compatibility with virtually all K-mount lenses.

Pentax commissioned acclaimed designer Marc Newson to shape the new K-01 and its 40mm ƒ/2.8 pancake "kit" lens. The result is a retro-meets-contemporary look that's functional, as well as creative. While it features an APS-C image sensor similar to the one in the K-5 DSLR, the K-01 is smaller and lighter (4.8x3.1x2.3 inches and 16.9 ounces vs. 5.2x3.1x2.3 inches and 23.3 ounces for the K-5). The body features a machined aluminum frame with covering highlighted in yellow, black or white.

The K-01 can shoot at 6 fps and features quiet operation. Autofocusing is contrast-based, with focus peaking to aid in manual focusing on the big LCD monitor. There's a built-in flash unit, plus a hot-shoe for Pentax dedicated external flash units.

Like Pentax DSLRs, the K-01 incorporates the company's effective sensor-shift shake reduction, which works with all lenses. It also includes a high-speed-vibration sensor-dust removal system. A number of built-in filters provide access to creative special effects in-camera.

STANDOUT FEATURE: The ability to shoot 22.3 megapixels at 6 fps makes the EOS 5D Mark III the fastest full-frame DSLR over 20 MP.
VERDICT: A fine balance between high resolution and good high-ISO image quality, with better video capabilities than its trendsetting predecessor.
1. SD, SDHC AND SDXC MEMORY: The K-01 takes SD, SDHC and SDXC (UHS-I) memory cards. 2. HIGH-RES LCD: Like Pentax's flagship DSLR, the K-01 features a 3.0-inch, 921,000-dot LCD monitor. 3. SIMPLE DESIGN: Marc Newson's clean control layout strips away the typical barrage of buttons and dials.


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