Pentax K-30 Digital SLR Review

Sections: Cameras for Beginners, Digital SLR, DSLR Cameras

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Pentax-K-30This weather-resistant, mid-level DSLR is marketed as a creative companion for travel and outdoor photographers. Whether it’s a sandy day at the beach or a trek into the wet rainforests, the K-30 is the ideal DSLR to capture your memories regardless of the elements you face. Its weather-sealed body and intuitive operation give you the flexibility and comfort to shoot what you want, where you want.

The K-30 combines a compact, lightweight body with features found in higher end DSLRs. These include fast autofocusing and a glass prism optical viewfinder with 100% field of view and .92x magnification. It also records Full HD 1080p video at a choice of frame rates (30, 25 or 24 frames per sec) or 720p HD video at 60 fps—all with shake reduction compensation so you get smooth, pro-quality movies.

“No detail was overlooked when designing the dynamic new K-30 to be weather resistant,” explained John Carlson, senior manager, Sales and Marketing, Pentax. “Every seam, every button, every hinge has been weather sealed for adventureproof creative photography. Whether enjoying outdoor activities such as hiking in the Rocky Mountains or on vacation cruising along on the Maid of the Mist at Niagara Falls, photographers can stop worrying about weather conditions and start focusing on capturing the perfect shot.”

Notable features include a 16-megapixel, large APS-C-size CMOS sensor; a 3.0-inch, high-res LCD; high-speed burst shooting at six images per second; a 1/6,000-sec high-speed shutter; live view at 60 fps with three grid display patterns; dual electronic dials for fingertip access to exposure control and auto picture and scene modes; and a RAW/Fx multifunction button for on-the-fly switching of image file formats.

To capture all of your outdoor adventures, the camera boasts 81 seals with proven functionality in subfreezing temperatures of 14° F. Its exterior was designed to be sporty and functional: a large grip provides a firm hold; its low-profile pentaprism housing reduces height; and a rounded, soft-rubber casing provides a grip for vertical shooting. And, the K-30 comes in three body colors: white or blue with glossy finishes and black for a traditional SLR look. It is also compatible with all Pentax K-mount lenses.

Other features include: artistic effects you can add to photos and video clips; the ability to record subjects in a series of video clips with the interval movie-shooting mode; ISO 100–12,800 (expandable to ISO 25,600) so you can capture the best low-light images; auto picture mode, which analyzes a scene then automatically selects the best mode from portrait, landscape, macro and others; 19 creative scene modes—including night scene portrait, pet and backlight silhouette, to simplify photographing scenes that often require uncommon settings; 19 creative digital filters; and 11 custom settings, like bleach bypass that creates a visual effect similar to the one used in motion pictures, and cross process to produce images with dramatic colors.

The Pentax K-30 retails for $849.95 body only and $899.95 in a kit with the DA L 18–55mm zoom lens.

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