Pentax K-1 II Review: A worthy upgrade?
The Pentax K-1 Mark II is a supremely weather-sealed, tough-built full-frame camera with a 36MP stabilized sensor. Billed as more a refinement of its predecessor than a replacement, the K-1 II gains a new hand-held Pixel Shift mode and sees improvements made to its AF Tracking algorithm - it also has a new pre-processor. Unfortunately, our testing reveals this additional processor applies full-time noise reduction to Raw files resulting in inferior image quality to that of its predecessor at higher ISO values.
- 36.2MP full-frame CMOS sensor with no anti-aliasing filter
- 5-axis sensor-shift image stabilization
- 100% pentaprism viewfinder with 0.70x magnification
- 33-point AF system (25 cross-type)
- Updated AF Tracking algorithm
- New hand-held Pixel Shift mode
- Extensive weather-sealing
- 1/200 sec flash sync speed
- 14-bit Raw recording (DNG or PEF)
- Built-in GPS with electro-magnetic compass and Astrotracer function
- 4.4 fps continuous shooting (6.5 fps in APS-C crop mode)
- 1080/30p video
The K-1 II faces stiff competition from other full frame models at this price point, many of which out-spec it across the board. But for landscape and adventure shooters, you'd be hard-pressed to find a full frame camera with as many useful and unique features, like built-in GPS, an Astrotracer mode for night sky photography, sensor shift technology, and LED lights on the body (to assist in the dark).
Over the course of several weeks, we've put the K-1 II through its paces in both the field and in our test lab. Read on to see how it performed and how it stacks up as a whole against the competition.
What's new and how it compares
Here's what's new in the K-1 II plus how it compares to existing models from other companies.
Body and design
The K-1 II has a host of unique body features borrowed from its predecessor including its clever articulating LCD mechanism.
What's it like to use
From landscapes to portraits, we've spent plenty of time shooting with the K-1 II in several different situations.
Our lab testing reveals the K-1 II's image quality is actually a step back from that of its predecessor. Will you notice the difference?
The K-1 II's 33-point AF system may have limited coverage, but it shows improvements over its predecessor when it comes to tracking.
The second-generation portable motion control system adds USB-C, improved connectivity and more.
The new models are designed to hold DSLRs or larger cameras and long tele lenses.