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Another new DSLR from Pentax

September 21, 2010: Pentax has chosen Photokina 2010 to showcase a new interchangeable-lens DSLR camera, the K-5.

Based on the popular K-7 model, the new K-5 features a new 23.7 x 15.7mm CMOS image sensor with 16 megapixel resolution. It’s built with a lightweight magnesium alloy, and a chassis of rigid stainless steel. The K-5 is dustproof, weather-resistant and cold-resistant. Its shutter mechanism is rated for 100,000 cycles and supports a top shutter speed of 1/800 second. The K-5 features the Pentax-developed SR (Shake Reduction) mechanism, which claims a shutter speed compensation of 2.5 to 4 EV steps.

The new camera provides a wide sensitivity range between ISO 100 and ISO 12800, which can be extended at each end via a custom function to cover ISO 80 and ISO 51200. The PRIME II imaging engine enables continuous shooting at approximately seven images per second. The buffer memory can accommodate up to 22 large/fine JPEG images, making this camera ideal for photographing sports and wildlife.

The K-5 features a new-generation, wide-frame SAFOX IX+ AF system with 11 sensor points (with nine cross-type sensors positioned in the middle). It also offers a choice of shutter-release options, including between focus priority and release priority in the AF.S (single) advance mode and between focus priority and speed priority in the AF.C (continuous) mode. An AF-assist light is also provided.

Other features include a pentaprism finder with close to 100 percent field of view and magnification of 0.92x. The Natural-Bright-Matte focusing screen is ideal for manual focusing. The new sensor supports improved autofocusing during Live View shooting, thanks to a more sophisticated algorithm that drives the Contrast-based system. A choice of three grid overlays is provided for composition assistance.

Full HD ((1920 x 1080 pixels) movie recording is supported at a frame rate of 25 frames per second. The K-5 also provides a wide range of special effects through custom images and digital filters. In-camera HDR processing is also included, with a choice between auto, standard and extended modes. The new camera also includes an electronic level, Raw/Fx button and 77-segment multi-pattern metering system.

For full details, visit the Pentax K-5 microsite at Photo Counter will publish details of local release dates and pricing when they become available.

– Margaret Brown, Photo Review

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