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Pentax Q Hands-on Preview

June 23, 2011 | By Richard Butler, Simon Joinson
Buy on Amazon.com From $234.88


Preview based on a pre-production Pentax Q running firmware 1.0

The Pentax Q is the smallest interchangeable lens camera on the market. And, just like the company's famously diminutive Auto 110 SLR from the late 70's, it achieves this by embracing a smaller format than its peers. Being built around a 1/2.3" sensor, the Q is a fraction of the size of even the smallest existing mirrorless cameras and is the first really pocketable model (though the protruding lens still means that'll have to be the pocket of your jacket, rather than your shirt or trousers).

To make clear what the rather opaque 1/2.3" figure actually means, it equates to a surface area of around 28mm2. This is around 1/8th the size of the sensor used in Micro Four Thirds cameras and 1/13th the size of the the APS-C format sensor in Sony's NEX. The advantage of this is that the lenses for the Q mount can be made a lot smaller than those for other systems, but the downside is that the image quality is more likely to resemble that of a compact camera than a DSLR.

You can glean a lot about Pentax's approach to the Q from the lenses it has announced: a 47mm equivalent F1.9 prime lens for the enthusiasts but accompanied with a healthy dose of fun in the form of two fixed focal length 'toy' lenses (a wide-angle and a telephoto version, both sub-$100). On the fun side of things there will also be a fisheye lens or, at the more serious end, a 28-83mm equivalent standard zoom with a built-in shutter, allowing flash sync at any shutter speed.

Coupled with the 47mm equiv. prime or the standard zoom the Q, with its sturdy magnesium-alloy build, appears to be offering an alternative take on the photographers' compacts such as the Canon G12, Olympus XZ-1 and even the Ricoh GRD. However, the fact that it can take different lenses means that in a matter of seconds it can be converted into a fun little camera that should still offer a more satisfying shooting experience than a mobile phone and image processing app.

And the Q is no toy camera, despite its modest sensor size it boasts a magnesium alloy body with rubber front coating, a 460,000 dot LCD on the rear and raw output in the DNG format. Interestingly, Pentax bucks the recent trend of trying to attract point-and-shoot users by removing those intimidating buttons with all those mysterious symbols on them, and includes plenty of external controls.

Pentax Q key specifications:

  • 12.4MP back-illuminated CMOS sensor (1/2.3" size - 6.17 x 4.55 mm)
  • Q-mount interchangeable lens mount
  • 12-bit DNG raw file option
  • 3" 460,000 dot LCD
  • Sensor-shift image stabilization and dust-removal
  • 1080p30 HD movie recording in H.264 format
  • 5 frame-per-second continuous shooting capability
  • Quick-dial control giving access to four image settings
  • In-camera HDR option blends three images
  • Built-in flash
  • Flash hot shoe (also used for mounting optional viewfinder)
  • Front and rear IR remote sensors

Compared to the Sony NEX-C3

The Q's well-proportioned design makes it a little hard to work out how large it is until you see it in comparison to another camera. The sensor is around 1/13th the size of that in the NEX-C3 but does means it's the closest a mirrorless camera has yet come to being truly pocketable.

Placing the Q side-by-side with the NEX helps give some idea of how small it is, but taking the lens off also reveals how small its sensor is. The Pentax doesn't trigger quite the same wonder about how the engineers managed to fit so much into so little space - suggesting that there's a minimum size a camera can currently be, regardless of sensor size.


If you're new to digital photography you may wish to read the Digital Photography Glossary before diving into this article (it may help you understand some of the terms used).

Conclusion / Recommendation / Ratings are based on the opinion of the reviewer, you should read the ENTIRE review before coming to your own conclusions.

Images which can be viewed at a larger size have a small magnifying glass icon in the bottom right corner of the image, clicking on the image will display a larger (typically VGA) image in a new window.

To navigate the review simply use the next / previous page buttons, to jump to a particular section either pick the section from the drop down or select it from the navigation bar at the top.

DPReview calibrate their monitors using Color Vision OptiCal at the (fairly well accepted) PC normal gamma 2.2, this means that on our monitors we can make out the difference between all of the (computer generated) grayscale blocks below. We recommend to make the most of this review you should be able to see the difference (at least) between X,Y and Z and ideally A,B and C.

This article is Copyright 2011 and may NOT in part or in whole be reproduced in any electronic or printed medium without prior permission from the author.

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Comments

Total comments: 279
1234
Zalllon

Let's say the sensor is equivelant to an micro 4/3. The boring part is you can't really play with DOF, at least I can do that with my micro 4/3. I don't know one photographer who will buy this, and I've talked to 30+ of them, 2 of which are Pentax fan boys. Only considerations are new Olympus E-PL3 or E-P3 line up, Canon G11/G12, or the lenses for my iPhone, LOL. For the camera with all the lenses, I wouldn't part with $300 for it all. I'd rather blow money paying Canadian retail for a battery grip (which will never happen by the way).

0 upvotes
siegfriedthieffen

With 800$ better I buy an second S5Pro.Or maybe something better....

0 upvotes
zakaria

I think this camera will compete well in the market if the price is not more than 500$ with the kit.
it is a new approach camera aimes to a part of people who want a dslr concept in a portable package.

0 upvotes
zakaria

I think this camera will compet well in the market if the price is not more than 500$ with the kit.
it is a new approach camera aimes to a part of people who want a dslr concept in a portable backage.

0 upvotes
boothrp

I don't understand what this camera gives over say the olympus XZ-1, other than the ability to get dust on the sensor ?

4 upvotes
dkadc

As an owner of multiple 4/3rds bodies I have listened to more than my share of crap over the size of my image sensor. So forgive me if I LOL over people defending a new lens mount and $800 camera that for some crazy reason features an image sensor 1/8th the size of the one in my Olympus.

Unless Pentax has managed to achieve a several order of magnitude breakthrough in image sensor technology, it is an absolute 100% GIVEN that the high ISO performance of this camera is going to suck hard.

4 upvotes
Vladilena

I think it will fit my hands just right. But at $800, I guess I will pass.

0 upvotes
Vladilena

I think it will fit my hands just right. But at $800, I guess I will pass.

0 upvotes
bushi

actually, nanoc, it depends - with regards of resolution, sensor technology have already far surpassed human eye. The same for sensitivity. Only dynamic range of human eye is still not reachable, and will not be reachable until we do not change 24bit RGB color representation.

0 upvotes
nanoc

Unfortunately, sensor technology hasn’t come anywhere near replicating human eye’s IQ. So, right now, using the current technology, you would be lying if you said that bigger isn’t better.
Regarding the fun factor I, for one, don’t see what the fun in having many expensive toy lenses to switch is. Actually, switching lenses is one of the things that ruin the fun of photography or, at least, distracts from the true purpose of a photographer, which is not paying attention to the equipment or how to use it, but paying attention to the picture they want to capture. If the goal is fun and ultimate portability, why didn’t pentax just produce an excellent compact camera, instead of an interchangeable lens camera?

3 upvotes
nanoc

Unfortunately, sensor technology hasn’t come anywhere near replicating human eye’s IQ. So, right now, using the current technology, you would be lying if you said that bigger isn’t better.
Regarding the fun factor I, for one, don’t see what the fun in having many expensive toy lenses to switch is. Actually, switching lenses is one of the things that ruin the fun of photography or, at least, distracts from the true purpose of a photographer, which is not paying attention to the equipment or how to use it, but paying attention to the picture they want to capture. If the goal is fun and ultimate portability, why didn’t pentax just produce an excellent compact camera, instead of an interchangeable lens camera?

0 upvotes
Raist3d

And a zoom doesn't distract? Changing all those focal lengths without paying attention to what it does to perspective? Most good fine art photographers I know agree that primes are one of the way to focus more on photography, not less. You start getting a very exact idea of what the lens does allowing you to pre-visualize more.

That said nothing wrong with zooms per se but if you talk about avoiding distractions, having a zoom on a camera is not a start.

Equally important is the camera ergonomics/interface. I can tell you right now the Q has better interface an ergonomics than an LX5, Nikon J1, Olympus XZ-1, and dare I say it, Fuji X10 (though the X10 is not bad). Yes, i have handled all of those. Every single one of them.

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
Zvonimir Tosic

The size of optical sensor in your eyes is much smaller than many small sensors, yet it delivers a benchmark image quality, better than one achieved with the largest sensor on the market.
Today's 'tiny' sensors (what is "tiny" anyway? are our optical nerves tiny too?) are delivering better image quality than several years old big size sensors and they are evolving much faster too. Perhaps people will finally get (or not?) that sensor size is not a deciding factor for image quality, because technology sorts that out quickly. A good lens is the most important and is a constant for good photography.
Nevertheless, Pentax Q is made for enjoyment, ease of use, creativity, ultimate portability and fun on the go. We've missed that terribly in digital photography, which has become increasingly 'serious' and boring. This is a breath of fresh air.

0 upvotes
HBoss26

Shutter will sound like a tiny click... but it looks like fun using it

0 upvotes
Greg Gebhardt

Tiny sensor, not good!

0 upvotes
Netwolfdt

Kinda disappointed. Pentax doesn't seem to bringing anything new... You may as well get an advance point and shoot with aviliable lens attachments.

1 upvote
foto2021

Designing, developing and manufacturing a new interchangeable lens camera system costs a lot of money. That explains the $800 price point for the Pentax Q body and lens.

However, at that price point, you can buy something much, much better. An entry-level Micro Four Thirds, Sony NEX or Samsung NX system has to be a far better choice.

Even when the price drops, as it surely must, Pentax will have a very difficult job selling its Q cameras against excellent products from Panasonic, Sony, Samsung and Olympus.

There are strong rumours that Nikon's mirrorless system will have a sensor smaller than APS-C, but surely not this small?

So I predict that, once the novelty has worn off (and that won't take long), the Pentax Q system simply won't sell.

0 upvotes
eadrian75

Those who are quick to pass judgment based solely on sensor size, without any hard proof of actual IQ or handling of the Q are those who enjoy the pixel peeping "dark side" of photography.

I think odds are good that PENTAX was not thinking of you when producing this camera. So please continue posting your lame duck, pixel perfect shots of bricks and flowers.

The Q looks like it could be fun and isn't that what photography is supposed to be when you're not making a living from it? Granted the $800 price tag is a bit to swallow right now, but I applaud the bold move by PENTAX.

11 upvotes
BBsLX5

"The Q looks like it could be fun..." 800 bucks worth of "fun"? Really?? And the lenses designed for the Q right now are toys, retailing for 80-120 bucks U.S. . The lens shipped w/ the Q is a " "let's cut the baby in half"-type lens because we can make it cheap even though it's nowhere near a wide angle or telephoto" kind of lens choice @ a 47mm equivalence. Mating an ordinary (by any other even "enthusiast's p&s" camera's standards) 24-80mm lens on the Q will only come later, and at an expense of what right now looks to be about 300 MORE bucks. The camera is going to include what's most likely a digital dof filter on it in order to give a fake "bokeh" effect to the pictures taken w/ it. Small sensor+cheap(and at the same time overpriced) lenses + comparably huge initial outlay of cash still = "FUN"??? Umm, no, not really.

2 upvotes
HubertChen

Dear BBsLX5, I have quite a collection of lenses for my APSC DSLR. And when I am going out shooting for fun, which do I carry? Recently only the 35 mm f/2. This is actually a 53 mm equivalent. I certainly could live with the 47 mm :-). My only wish would be to have a camera that is lighter but operates like my DSLR. Maybe the Q will deliver. I agree with eadrian, just can not write as nicely as he can. Sometimes when you go out, you want to have fun with the camera. For my shooting style the Q offers a great promise. Using it will show if it can deliver. Pentax needs to be commended to deliver us as complete different animal of camera. Isn't that great? More choice for us photographers? Why berate a company giving you more choice? Germans would say, you are cutting into your own flesh. And how can you make a judgement this camera is no FUN??? Fun is an emotional response in real life. You would actually need to use the Q to be able to comment if is fun for you or not.

2 upvotes
chekist

Yes, by that account you can never pass any judgment. So, OK camera does not have DOF, half decent high ISO, DR to speak of, and costs as much as cameras that do - who said there is not a photographer who will find it amusing? Doesn't the camera look fun? Shouldn't we at least applaud Pentax for providing new entry in DPreview news column? Answer is 'yes' to all of those, but why should that preclude from expressing their opening about the useless camera?

Sensor size is the most fundamental limiting factor in photography. Anyone who thinks that 1/2.5" sensor vs APS-C is a distinctions important only to pixel-peepers, clearly does not know too much about photography.

0 upvotes
ffnikclif

If you are a pentax fan-boy great, buy the camera. The dark side is Nikon not pixel peepers. Surely you can see this camera does not have much bang for the buck. And if you decide to come over to the Dark side that's OK too.

Good luck,

Fred

PS: Don't cameras with sensors that small normally retail for under 200 bucks?

1 upvote
Raist3d

I think people here miss that the Q is punching above its weight. The tiny sensor it has does actually better than the LX5 current sensor, as the ISO goes up. The LX5 I would say does better at low ISO, but those saying "the ISO is bad/horrible/whatever" should say the same then of the LX5, Olympus XZ-1.

0 upvotes
Haider

Hear hear mate.

0 upvotes
R Stacy

Well you're only going to be into the whole kit and cabootle for less than $1500 or so and you can play with it for a few months then put it in the safe for the grandkids.

1 upvote
tanhawan

gooooooooooooooood

0 upvotes
rocklobster

Let's face it - lenses on the NEX are too big or would be if they made a more usable pancake of 35mm+ (equiv). Olympus/Panasonic pancake lens size is OK but the E-Px body is too big and the GFx has no IS in body.

So, the logical step is for an in-between sized sensor, perhaps 3/4 to 1 inch but, wait a minute, 1/1.7" sensors are close to that size and there are a few of those around. Imagine an LX-5 with interchangable lenses or, even smaller, a Canon S95 with same. The Pentax may turn out to be a 'fun' camera but how much do you want to pay for such fun?

3 upvotes
xlynx9

I think when the preview says "it's the closest a mirrorless camera has yet come to being truly pocketable.", by "mirrorless", it actually means "interchangeable lens".

Ultra compacts are mirrorless and truly pocketable today.

3 upvotes
ThorKre

And have bigger sensors. And are cheaper. And offer a zoom range while being just as small and fast.

0 upvotes
Funduro

My 2 cents. Bought a Oly XZ-1 + EV-2 recently so I'm not in the market for another expensive compact camera. I think the camera earns the Q name. It has a unique look, sure it has a smaller sensor then the XZ-1 then again it is smaller and you can change the lenses. It's interesting, the review's testing will no doubt have several negative mentions plus a few surprises. The person that buys this camera will no doubt take those under consideration. I accepted several with the XZ-1, such is life. It's a brave move by Pentax to create a whole new lens mount standard. Will definitely get press for been the first(last?) with this mount. BTW the Q was some sort of stealth marketing campaign during Photokina 2010?

0 upvotes
Jeff Peterman

The key thing will be the camera's low light performance. I see it as a potential competitor for the G12/S95 range. If the image quality can match, AND it has better lenses (fast, with good optics) it could be an interesting camera.

Note that I may be one of the few who remembers the Pentax compact 110-film SLR. Yes, it was limited by the image quality from the 110 film (probably about the size of the sensor in this camera!), but the control options and lens options made it very interesting for somethat that small.

0 upvotes
AnHund

Nope. It is really a lot smaller than 110 film which had a frame of 13x17mm which is 221 mm2. The Pentax 1/2.3" sensor is equivalent to 8.8x6.6mm or 58,08 mm2 which is about 3,8 times smaller area.

1 upvote
ClickBoom

Loved that camera (110 SLR), wouldnt mind one just to collect dust. So it fits in with the brand DNA

0 upvotes
HubertChen

Dear Jeff, thanks for reminding us on the Pentax 110. I just looked it up. Cute little thing. This gives me even more hope that Pentax knows what they are doing :-)
Dear AnHund, when comparing sizes, you forgot to put the time line into your equation. The 110 was introduced in 1978. At that time resolution of 35 mm film was not has high as it is now. I made tests in 2002 and concluded 35 mm FF was about 12 Mega Pixel. From feeling I would say the pictures I shot in late seventies have about 1/3 resolution that they had in 2002. That makes it 4 MP in late seventies. FF is 860 mm2, you said 110 is 221 mm2, that makes 110 to be the size of 1/4 FF, that leaves it to be 1MP at the time. 1 MP is about the resolution of a 15" laptop, the maximum size most people look at their pictures. They were successful with that ( much | little) image quality then. So they might be more successful with the Q now as it has much better IQ than the 110. Or maybe IQ is not so relevant here ?

1 upvote
christophbodner

A list of some film and sensor formats in millimeters:

Standard 8 film: 3.6 x 4.9
Super 8 film: 4.22 x 5.69
Pentax Q: 4.55 x 6.17
16 mm film: 7.49 x 10.26
Minox: 8 x 11
Kodak pocket size: 13 x 17
(micro)FourThirds: 13 x 17.3
APS-C: 15.7 x 23.6
FF: 24 x 36

In my opinion, everything below "pocket size" is too amateurish for a camera system. Pentax should have joined the microFourThirds group.

0 upvotes
Andy Crowe

Looks like you could use some interesting super8 lenses on there with minimum vignetting...

0 upvotes
sportyaccordy

The front shot with the sensors says a lot... and the price comparo between the two says it all. If Sony can make the 16mm lens decent (and fast!) the NEX will be set.

1 upvote
steve131

Common sense .....

Most photographers who care to carry with them and change lens because they can do something extra to achieve the image quality they want.

If Pentax thinks ppl will change lens for fun and don't care about image quality, then they will learn a lesson.

I think most mirrorless fans will go with m43. Sony die-hard fans will go with NEX, but I suspect Sony as a company is going to a dead-end. Sad ... I used to be a big fan of Sony.

I just hope Pentax Q will not become a big joke in the history of mirrorless camera. Look at that little camera, it's lovely, if you can ignore the sensor part.

2 upvotes
kadarpik

Most of such cameras have only one lens, micro 4/3 is not a professional thing either, I really do not want to carry large equipment if going out with my family - usually shooting with mobile phone even, just composition and journalism matters here. To get HQ images it takes anyway much of devotion and equipment and time time... I tried sony nex and did not liked the menu system at all. I would like to try the Q at least and if IQ is similar or better to Nokia N8, it is wonderful companion and also in a more serious camera bag just for documenting and why not shooting invisibly.

1 upvote
magneto shot

if that is ur reason, just buy the LX5 or oly xz-1, that will beat the crap out of your n8 and save u $$$ as well as more pocketable than Q.

2 upvotes
magneto shot

if that is ur reason, just buy the LX5 or oly xz-1, that will beat the crap out of your n8 and save u $$$ as well as more pocketable than Q.

1 upvote
HubertChen

my experience is that any 12 MP sensor can out-resolve almost any lens given enough light. Prime lenses always have been significantly better than standard zooms. When I am going out, I do not bring all my primes, but only one or two matching the trip. I can easily see it happen that a Nex5 combines with a standard zoom will be bagged by the Q with a prime in terms of IQ. If you have enough light, sensor size is almost irrelevant, lens quality then becomes the deciding factor. I am also certain that a Nex5 will bag the Q when you shoot at candle light, no matter the lens :-)

1 upvote
LaFonte

After all the negative comments, is it only me who actually finds the white Q ellegant ?
I am not buing Q, but I guess the potential buyer for this camera is one that would not bother with a sensor size, but simply like the looks of it. And price of pentax always go down after while, easily 30% so then it would be on par with the better compacts like LX or XZ

0 upvotes
aidan obsidian

think toy lens is a bad choice of words? other than that it has some appeal to me

0 upvotes
stavrosII

Quality materials and construction, cool lenses. Sick to death of sensor size obsession. I love this camera.

0 upvotes
Andy Crowe

Sensor size is important as it generally dictates what kind of image quality you can get.

1/2.3" sensors don't have a very good track record, it's possible Pentax has made some major breakthroughs but if not then why spend $800 on a camera that takes similar images to a $100 camera?

Even if they are going for small as possible there are bigger sensor sizes they could use (1/1.6" comes to mind, even 2/3" or 1") that would improve the high iso and depth of field characteristics without increasing the size by that much.

1 upvote
Clark1

Given the technical life of cameras why must all but the cheapest consumer cameras be made of unobtainium? This camera might be much more marketable with a plastic body (which can be functionally superior) and a few less features. Camera and fast prime at $300-400 would put it in the range of a pretty cool toy, which it seems to be anyway.

5 upvotes
sportyaccordy

Yep... an X100 style cam made of marbled plastic w/a 4/3 sensor & high quality fixed prime would have made more sense.

1 upvote
PNK

No OVF is a big drawback for be. I have the GF1 and X100. GF1 is much faster in focus but since it doesn't have an OVF, it sits at home.

1 upvote
Britney Elvis

optional OVF I thought? just add the extra cost onto 800

1 upvote
Camancha

Bold move by Pentax. At least the company dares to try something new, unlike the disgustingly boring Canon and Nikon.

9 upvotes
sportyaccordy

Pentax be bold by putting feces in a box and charging $800 for it... doesn't mean it's a good business move. If you want a camera you can fit in your pocket w/o arousing suspicion there are many great small P&Ss. If your priority is IQ you won't be able to fit it in your pocket. This thing married the IQ of a pocket camera with the expense of a DSLR. What was the point?

2 upvotes
Midwest

Want to know what else is disgustingly boring Camancha? Getting lots of noisy, blurred photos under tough circumstances with a small sensor camera. I think I'll keep my "boring" Canon which cost me less than this 'Q' would only it takes much better photos nearly every time. Is it about the camera, or the photos?

2 upvotes
furryurry

I think what they should've dared to do is a full frame camera not this

1 upvote
wutsurstyle

My first dslr is the k-x, and while I love it and the way Pentax handles in general, if this is the way research and development is heading then I'm jumping ship. Out of all the things they need to improve on to stay competitive -- better flashguns, more modern zoom lenses, focus and metering systems -- they decide to make this failure Q mount (which by the way stands for Queen, and K for King) for a tiny sensor. They should have followed Sony's A and E mount systems.

Even IF they succeed in good image quality (a big IF), you still lose bokeh capability AND collapsible zoom lenses. Its like the worst of both worlds! I'm so disappointed. Please someone give me some hope.

4 upvotes
Britney Elvis

Hoya's most 'successful' move since buying Pentax has been the multi-colored bodies on its entry level DSLR's... (a truly innovative design) Those cameras were never meant for the DPR gang, and neither is this one.

I cant believe they spent a nickel developing this idea.... As they had already failed at this with the 110 film SLR years ago. But like the fuchsia KX and matching lenses, this little guy was not designed for me. Sadly the target audience, soccer moms and hipsters with too much money are already hooked on their Iphones and apps, so the timing of this release is a couple of years late.

1 upvote
JakeB

"the downside is that the image quality is more likely to resemble that of a compact camera than a DSLR."

Tells me all I need to know; can't have compact AND dslr quality.

2 upvotes
John Bessa

All the criticism has to be correct--nfw can a tiny sensor work well except under ideal conditions, with patience.

But, if you look at all the other technology it has been about miniaturization: disks, CPUs, RAM

I cannot help but think that sensors will get better along Moore's law 100% ever 16 months.

0 upvotes
marcuz

The image under the "Compared to the Sony NEX-C3" title up here in the article says it better than words could.

1 upvote
Benny Lee

i was about to get the lx5 soon, but think will hold & see how this Q grows.
price will go down below $500, lens line will grow, hope there'll be more fixed strong lenses (forget the zooms), a 28mm prime f/2.8 perhaps, with its own ovf :)
then let's see the image quality, if at least match g12 or lx5.... :D
it's kind of odd, but i rather hv some good feelings about this Q

0 upvotes
John Cal

The look grows on you, Leica..ish. If it had Leica on the tag everyone would be marveling at the miniature brilliance and style of this new system. Let's wait and see the image quality before we burn Pentax at stake. This may be a winner lets wait and see.

9 upvotes
Martin_PTA

The look is about the only thing that's great about it! The $800 price tag kills it in its tracks. There are hundreds of better options in that price range!

1 upvote
M Jesper

Leica wouldn't make this.

1 upvote
Charles Lau

Neither will Olympus and Sony, what kind of a dimm wit would try to sell a 2/3 sensor camera for $800. It is a niche market product for sure...no likely to generate a waiting list like the x100 or the Gh2

1 upvote
sacundim

It's not a 2/3" sensor, it's a 1/2.3" sensor. A 2/3" sensor would be a lot better...

1 upvote
Martin_PTA

They way I see it, is that Qwntm' s checklist will only be complete once someone is able to get close-to current APS-C/micro-four-thirds performance on 1/2.3" sensor size. Sensor quality will improve, and at some stage P&S cameras will be capable of good performance. Pentax can then capitalize on experience gained here to maintain this niche.

I think it a bold move from Pentax, but will bear fruit only on one very major condition: PRICE! The modern tendency is to make these "mirrorless" cameras too expensive. In South Africa very few people buy them , and their second hand value tends to be on the low side. This large-sensor mirrorless sector is thus already a definite FAIL here. If Pentax can do this body for sub-$400, BUT also add a plastic body (similar to entry level DSLR material) for say $200 - $250, they should be set to go somewhere! This last point is critical, as I think they did it wrong way round! If they can't, this niche-attempt will probably end up an epic FAIL!

0 upvotes
Britney Elvis

Agreed with the price point... sadly pentax has been heading in the other direction since hoya bought them... Prices up, and remain high. their lenses are silly high priced.

0 upvotes
Qwntm

Small camera - check
Interchangeable lenses - check
Decent build - check
Image Quality - Point and Shoot - FAIL

Someone is going to get all the pieces together sooner or later.

5 upvotes
psyberZ

Original thinking indeed. The lenses will be inexpensive AND well into production by the time the sequels to this are established.

It may be just a matter of time until a boffin develops a double sensor with twice or even four times the light gathering ablity of the current smallest.

It reminds me of a prof photog I know who long ago was given a Pentax 110 as a sort of joke/mantelpiece ornament - he ended up using it exclusively (once you get used to the IQ, you begin to love the IQ)

0 upvotes
jadrzew

Cool, and a good idea although a pricey one indeed! Let's see some sample images.

0 upvotes
Zoltan Csuka

Why would anybody want this versus an XZ1 or s95 is beyond me. This "thing" does not have any market potential at all. To start with, the lenses are not collapsible so they are protruding too much which makes this thing the same size as MFT. Lens mount is too big simply, photos will be too noisy, lens options too limited, the whole thing is way overpriced. I just can't see one single advantage over anything that we have currently already on the market.

5 upvotes
fransams

Quote from image-resource:

"Though we had received permission in advance to shoot and post a small set of our laboratory sample shots reduced to half-size, we received notice after publication that Pentax wanted the images removed."

Why tell me why....

2 upvotes
princewolf

Why do you think ;)

0 upvotes
Midwest

Let's see, maybe DPReview's images revealed that wonderful breakthrough in tiny sensor image quality by Pentax that some folks are speculating about. Ha ha ha ha ha!

1 upvote
Vladik

Is this a joke? :/

1 upvote
Mssimo

What is the " (electronic shutter: 1/13 sec)" is that what it has when there is a lens on it with out its own shutter(ie: legacy lens)??

0 upvotes
Ed_arizona

so who wants a toy version of 4/3 cameras with Teeny sensor, may as well get a S95 or LX5 (which I use)

1 upvote
Jon Allison

Oh dear, nice machine if was priced about 500 bucks cheaper.

0 upvotes
snake_b

'more satisfying than a mobile phone and imaging app'

I think pentax and dpr are very, very confused.

5 upvotes
Richard Butler

Whereas you seem confused about how quotes work.

The quote was: 'more satisfying shooting experience' and was based on the fact you have a much higher level of control over the creative process than most phones offer. I stand by my comment.

2 upvotes
Don Scharf

first ...this hint Q camera..it is a throw back to a candid camera. The referance to James Bond. I would never purchase a camera made of plastic or called a Rebel ! This is a secondary camera or to be used when we can not use a SLR due to size. The price is high, lets see what happens.....

0 upvotes
zamorac

Well, I suppose it's good to have a breath of fresh air on market, but at 800$ pricetag this is ridiculous.

3 upvotes
Charles Lau

It is even more ridiculous that it sports a finger nail sized sensor!
Pentax...what are you guys thinking?

2 upvotes
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