Final Thoughts
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Final Thoughts

While the somewhat bizarre LEDs on the K-S1's front grip will likely garner the most attention, under the hood it seems like a quite capable DSLR. On the spec side, you get a 20MP APS-C CMOS sensor, a selectable AA filter, built-in image stabilization, and a max ISO of 102,400. It's also capable of shooting continuously at 5.4 fps. And, as usual, it's packed with nearly every feature imaginable. 

The specs of the camera are more impressive than the ergonomics. We like the large optical viewfinder and backlit mode dial, though the latter is rough on your thumb. The four-way controller is poorly designed, and the grip is small and slippery. The LED lights on the grip are more style than substance, but at least you can turn them off. 

The biggest issue we have with the K-S1 is figuring out its target audience. Its design (including those LEDs) makes it stand out in the crowd, but the biggest selling points should be what's inside.  The K-S1's closest competitors are the Canon SL1 (EOS 100D) and Nikon D3300, both of which have lower MSRPs (not to mention street prices) and are equally capable. An even bigger question is why one would buy the K-S1 when Pentax's own K-50 is weather-sealed and less expensive.