Best Pentax Cameras

Last Updated on March 16, 2021

If you are searching for a high quality camera that is not as expensive as the most common high end cameras, then a Pentax digital camera may be the top option for you.

Pentax is not as well known as Canon and Nikon but they are a good quality alternative for those looking for performance at a lower overall price.

Pentax is able to do this by focusing in on their specific niche in the photography world. Providing good performing cameras at a budget friendly price point and nothing else.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Are Pentax Cameras a Good option?

Pentax offers a line of cameras that will make most photographers happy. Their are models designed for the absolute beginner up to an intermediate photographer looking for a low cost model for more advanced shooting.

Pentax are a solid quality camera, and most models offer key features such as a robust build quality, stabilization, and weatherproofing.

The biggest trade off you will find in shooting with one is they generally offer a lower level of performance in shooting video, in burst mode, and they have a slower autofocus than higher end makes.

Are Pentax Cameras Modern and Up to Date?

Pentax does not update their camera models frequently. This is part how they are able to maintain low costs. If having the absolute most current technology is not a priority for you then Pentax is a great option. On the other hand, if having a recently updated camera model is very important then you may want to go with another brand, such as Sony, Canon or Nikon.

Is Pentax a Good Camera Brand?

Yes Pentax is a good camera brand. While they have a small offering to choose from, the models available are good performing cameras that are good at what they are designed for. Namely, point and shoot photography. Pentax has built a solid reputation in the photography world for low cost, solid performing brand.

Are Pentax Lenses Good Quality?

Pentax offers a solid quality lens portfolio. Since the K-mount has been in production since 1975, there are many quality lenses available for you to use with your Pentax camera. You will easily be able to get a lens that offers autofocus and stabilizing features. Lens quality generally is on par with Canon, Nikon and Sony.

Where Are Pentax Made?

Early models were produced in Japan but more modern models are produced in the Philippines or Vietnam.

Which Is the Best 35mm Camera by Pentax?

Without a doubt, the best full frame, 35mm camera offered by Pentax is the K1-II model. This solid workhorse offers a 36mp CMOS sensor with a solid in body stabilization. It features a 33 point autofocus system along with providing full weatherproofing.

Top Picks for the Best Pentax Cameras

Pentax 645Z

This is the most modern medium format model for Pentax and is the update to the 645d. It offers an excellent and robust build quality with superior weatherproofing. I particularly like the two SD card slots and the very long battery life. You can get up to 1230 shots on a single charge. This makes the 645z an exceptional outdoor camera option ideal for taking into the field.

With an impressive 51.4mp sensor you will attain excellent resolution and image detail. Remember that the medium format means that the pixel size is larger than the k1-II, which provides improved sensitivity with a wider dynamic range and better color contrast.

The Pentax 645z is an excellent alternative to the Fujifilm GFX 50S and the Hasselblad X1D II.

Pentax K1-II

The K1-II is a true professional quality camera and is Pentax’s top DSLR model. As soon as you hold it in your hand you will be able to recognize the superb build quality. It is solid and offers a great grip with easy to master controls.

With a 36mp sensor, you will have excellent image resolution and also offers a Pixel shift option for even sharper image quality.

You will find the 5 axis stabilization will prevent blurry images even when shooting with longer shutter speed. This is a great feature.

With dual SD card slots, the K1-II provides you ample storage space. Add in top quality weatherproofing and this is another great camera model for shooting out in nature. You won’t have to worry even when shooting in wet, dirty and muddy conditions.

This is also a very popular model for night sky and astrophotography enthusiasts.

The K1-II provides an exceptional ISO range of 819200, with 13 stops of boost from ISO 100 which is perfect for astrophotography.

The high performing stabilization of this model allows you to shoot in hand even at slow speeds. This is ideal when shooting the stars long without producing star trails.

One cool little feature are the small lights on the body that make changing lenses in the dark a breeze. It also offers you GPS location data embedded in your images which is handy when categorizing your images. The built in Wifi is great for remote camera control and sending images to other devices.

As with most Pentax models, the only true downside it the video shooting capabilities. But if shooting video is not your main concern this is an excellent option for you.

Pentax KP

The KP is the top APS-C camera model from Pentax and is the update to the K3-II. It offers a truly impressive build quality with superb weatherproofing making this a robust and rugged model.

If you are familiar with the K1 line this camera will feel similar to you. It offers full control over the resolution and the three dial design is probably my favorite available. Not only can you adjust all three exposure settings, but you can also map these to other settings. A great design feature.

My model came with three different grip options which allows photographers with any hand size to get a comfortable grip. This is a key feature due to the relative bulk of this model.

It also offers exceptional in body stabilization along with Astrotracer and pixel shift. This is an excellent option for those who want to shoot at night. With a sensor offering an ISO of 819200, it is the second best you will find available at a much lower cost than the Nikon D7500 or the Canon 80D.

This model will also allow you to shoot with fast lenses in bright outdoor conditions. It offers an electronic shutter with speeds up to 1/24000.

Pentax K70

The K70 is an exceptional budget level DSLR for those who still want great performance. This model keeps the price down while still offering much of the features you find in the pro lineup. It offers a great build quality with excellent weather-proofing. It is pretty heavy so keep that in mind as well.

The settings can be controlled from the two dial system with an easy to use button layout. The ISO offers two full stops and reaches up to 102400. If paired with a fast lens this model performs very well in low light settings. It provides decent image stabilization for shooting in hand while minimizing image blur.

This model also comes with Astrotracer for tracking the movement of the stars for breathtaking long exposure night sky images. The astrotracer tech minimizes star trail. The K70 also offers pixel shift which provides even better image detail.

The less optimal features primarily stems from the limited 11 autofocus points. They are well scattered though so this will only be limiting for the more advanced photographers. The autofocus is fast and I found it surprisingly accurate as well.

The large optical viewfinder performs well and makes composition a snap even for the beginner. It offers live view along with an excellent hybrid AF system.