Pentax K20D review

Started May 11, 2008 | User reviews
drew_smith New Member • Posts: 6
Pentax K20D review

I am very satisfied with my K20 which I have had for 6 weeks. I have taken it on 2 trips and numerous local hikes. The image quality is everything I wanted, and I like not having to worry about the weather. Low light performance (to 1600ISO) is very good.

Operating the camera is very satisfying, increasingly so as I become more familiar with all the controls. I have not had a true high performance camera in the past, and I really appreciate being able to have so much control (when I want it) without paging through menus. It also works well in fully automatic mode which is great while traveling -- I don't have to or want to think about every picture.

I bought this over a Canon 40D and Nikon 300D to achieve a lower overall system cost (in-body shake reduction having a lot to do with that) and the weatherproofing. I'm sure those would be fine too, but I am fully satisfied with my decision.

I have a Pentax 18-250 (great travel lens), a Pentax 12-24 (more useful than I ever thought, and great quality), and Pentax FA43mm f1.9 (purchased for low light, but this is a gem all around. Sharp, sharp, sharp...)


No problems, but every camera has its personality and I'm learning this one. It has a strong bias toward focusing on the center point. When in program metering mode it responds strongly to bright areas, showing a bias toward not blowing highlights. This usually works fine, because a remarkable amount of detail can be pulled out of shadow areas. But there are times when I would give up the highlights for a better exposure of my main subject. It's hard to fault the camera for this, and past cameras have driven me crazy with blown highlights. I think the dynamic range of the K20 is pretty good, but can one ever have enough?

Pentax K20D
15 megapixels • 2.7 screen • APS-C sensor
Announced: Jan 23, 2008
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