High speed Pentax hits 16MP with new K-5

Pentax has introduced an addition to its DSLR range of cameras that features a 16.28-million-pixel CMOS sensor and which can shoot 22 full sized images at a rate of 7fps. Due to arrive in late October, priced £1199.99 in a kit with a 18-55mm WR zoom, the Pentax K-5 is based on the existing K-7 body but uses an equivalent processor to that in the company?s 645D medium format body and features a new 11 point AF system. SAFOX IX+ is said to have redesigned optics and places nine cross-type sensors in the middle of the frame. In Live View mode an improved contrast detection system offers enhanced performance over the K-7, while a new ?Golden Section? screen display guide will help users obtain classical composition. A further compositional aid is the new electronic level function, that now offers a tilt detection mode.

The camera body will be made from magnesium alloy with a stainless steel chassis. Protected against weather and dust by 77 seals under buttons and joints the K-5 has been tested to ?10°C and 100,000 shutter cycles, and battery-life is said to extend to 1,100 frames in normal conditions.

Pentax has extended the ISO range of the camera to ISO80-51200 via a custom function setting (previously 100-6400 including extended mode), and provides the 77-segment metering arrangement of the K-7, with spot, centre weighted and evaluative configurations. The company?s SR shake reduction system will also be built-in, and will offer between 2.5 and 4 stops of compensation.

An ?almost 100% ?viewfinder with 0.92x magnification should offer a large and bright image, while the rear-mounted 3in ?wide-view? LCD features a resolution of 921k dots. Compensation for optical distortion, such as chromatic fringing and curvilinear bending, has been programmed in to the camera?s firmware, and works with DA, DFA and FA lenses. Pentax has also made provision for photographers to record their copyright information in image files.

This camera will also feature Pentax?s most sophisticated movie function, offering Full HD 1920×1080 pixels and 25fps.

The Pentax K-5 will be compatible with the same D-BG4 battery grip and interchangeable focusing screens that are used by the existing K-7.

There is no body-only price yet, but Pentax has announced the following kits:

Recommended Retail Price:

− K-5 +18-55mm WR – £1199.99

− K-5 + 18-55mm WR + 50-200mm WR – £1299.99

− K-5 + 18-135mm WR – £1699.99

Read all our Pentax stories here, including pricing for the 645Dcolor>

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