Pentax recently filled a major gap in its digital single-lens reflex lineup with the K-1, the first ever full-frame DSLR camera from the manufacturer.
Pentax's parent company, Ricoh, touted a full-frame prototype a year ago, and Pentax finally delivered. The manufacturer built a DSLR camera able to go head to head with the likes of Sony, Nikon and Canon.
The magnesium alloy body of the K-1 is weather-resistant and dustproof, so you can have photo shoots even in harsh conditions. It packs a 36.4-megapixel sensor, a top sensitivity of 204,800 ISO and a top shooting speed of 4.4 fps.
What the Pentax's camera interestingly offers over its rivals is a 3.2-inch LCD screen, which is very useful in low or high angle shooting. The LCD element pulls out from the main body of the camera, enabling you to use the DSLR in less standard angles.
Another special mention goes to the price of the device. The K-1 requires you to shell out $1,799 for a full-frame camera, which is a great deal when compared to comparable DSLRs from other brands. In case you're thinking about purchasing a slightly more affordable DSLR, check out our comparison list.
Other unique features on the K-1 include the "operation assist light," or small LEDs that let the photographer tweak setting in low-light conditions or swap memory cards.
Moreover, the photographs taken with the full-frame camera will be sharp due to the five-axis image stabilization. Resolution and fidelity are ensured thanks to the near 100 percent viewfinder coverage. Additional features count the 1/8000 second lightning-fast shutter speed and the ability to capture video of 1080p/30fps.
An optical low-pass filter (OLPF) would have been welcomed, but Pentax assures its customers that the K-1 reduces moire in a similar fashion, by "applying microscopic vibrations to the image sensor."
Two new lenses make their debut alongside the camera: the HD Pentax-D, FA 28-105mm f/3.5-5.6 compact zoom lens and the HD Pentax-D, FA 15-30mm f.2.8 ultra-wide angle zoom. The latter seems to be targeted at landscape shots in lower lighting conditions.
The K-1 also works with Pentax's medium-format 645 lenses, provided you have the appropriate adaptor. Also, if the 1.6 magnification does not faze you out, Pentax K-mount APS-C lenses will work with the new full-frame camera.
Pentax promised to roll out more lenses for its latest camera, and we will keep you posted as soon as it does.
The K-1 will start shipping to its first users in April.