Best Cool Cameras: Pentax Q10

Sections: Cameras for Beginners, Digital SLR, DSLR Cameras

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Pentax-Q10-reviewThe perky, 12.4-megapixel Pentax Q10 interchangeable-lens camera gets big points for its small size. It’s super compact—barely larger than a deck of cards—yet is built to produce DSLR-quality photographs and Full HD video for shooters of all levels. And, you can personalize it with an incredible range of 100 different custom color combinations by mixing and matching body and grip colors to suit your personal style.

Its creative features include a one-touch bokeh control function to add artistically defocused effects typical of an SLR, smart effect modes to apply special effects with the turn of a dial, and 19 built-in digital filters.

“Not only does the new Pentax Q10 have a tiny footprint but it packs a powerful punch when it comes to picture taking, especially when compared to any smartphone or digital point-and-shoot camera,” said John Carlson, Sr., manager of Sales and Marketing, Pentax. “With the availability of a K-mount adapter for the Pentax Q-series of cameras, we have extended this camera category to fulfill endless photographic possibilities for Q users, who can now use any one of 25 million Pentax K-mount lenses with their Q system.” (Only manual focusing is available with K-mount lenses.)

The Q10’s CMOS sensor is engineered for high sensitivity and low noise, so you can use its entire range from ISO 100–6400 to make sharp, clear images—and take advantage of its built-in HDR (high dynamic range) function, which produces a composite photo from multiple images to create details free of whitewashed highlights and blacked-out shadows. In addition, with shutter speeds as fast as 1/2,000 second possible, you can freeze a moving subject, and using high-speed continuous shooting at five frames per second, you’ll easily capture the decisive moment within a series of movements.

Also notable, by assigning the smart effect function to the quick dial on the camera’s front panel, you can instantly add a custom finishing touch to your images while previewing the effects on the Q10’s 3.0-inch LCD. Four of your favorite effects from the nine smart effects can be added to this dial—or other preferences, such as a custom image setting or a digital filter.

In addition to still photos, the Q10 records Full HD (1,920×1,080 pixels) video in the H.264 recording format at 30 frames per second. And smart effects and other in-camera movie-editing tools can be used during movie shooting, as well as autofocus.

Other Q10 features include: Pentax’s original SR (shake reduction) mechanism to capture blur-free images; auto picture mode, which automatically selects the best shooting mode for a subject or scene, then optimizes all affecting parameters, such as shutter speed, aperture, white balance, saturation, contrast, and sharpness; 21 scene modes, like night scene portrait and pet; a choice of four exposure modes; and RAW & JPEG file formats.

The Pentax Q10 compact interchangeable-lens camera retails for $349.99.

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