Pentax K-m Review
(also known as the Pentax K2000)

Review Date: December 1st 2008
Author: Mark Goldstein

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Page 1
Introduction / Ease of Use
Page 2
Image Quality
Page 3
Sample Images
Page 4
Design
Page 5
Specifications
Page 6
Conclusion

Conclusion


Ratings (out of 5)
Design
4.5
Features
4
Ease-of-Use
5
Image Quality
4
Value for Money
4.5

The new Pentax K-m is another excellent addition to Pentax's DSLR range. Seamlessly slotting in below the K200D, it offers a simpler and more intuitive layout that will suit beginners better. The retro top LCD panel has been replaced with a more glamorous rear LCD screen version that you can scroll around, the dedicated Help button provides, well, helpful quick tips on the camera's controls and menu options, and the majority of the camera's controls are now logically positioned to the right of the viewfinder / LCD screen. The K-m even improves on the more expensive K200D in some areas, notably a faster continuous shooting speed of 3.5 fps, expanded ISO range of 100-3200, and a less cluttered main menu system. Admittedly there are some downgrades, most notably the 5 point AF system which makes it more difficult to track moving subjects, slightly less powerful pop-up flash and the complete lack of any Live View or Digital Preview functionality (the K200D offers the latter).

Given the aggressive price-point, however, the Pentax K-m certainly hits the mark in terms of features, performance and most importantly image quality. The only major difference between the K-m and K200D is that the latter offers better low-light performance, with intrusive amounts of noise appearing at ISO 1600 rather than 800 on the K-m. In all other respects the 10 megapixel images from the cameras are very similar, with very little purple-fringing, accurate colours and a useful built-in flash and Bulb exposure mode, all delivered with the minimum of user input and effort. The various digital effects and ability to develop RAW files in-camera are additional nice touches that help complete a great image quality package.

Compared to it's main rivals (and there are a lot of them), the Pentax K-m also has a lot going for it. We're big fans of built-in image stabilisation, a great feature that's easy for beginners to understand, and which only the Sony A200 also offers. The LCD screen, megapixel count and continuous shooting speed are all on a par with competitors like the Canon EOS 1000D, Nikon D60 and Olympus E-420, whilst the new 5-point AF and lack of Live View place it in the middle of the pack. The K-m is the smallest camera out of all these models (although not the lightest), but importantly it doesn't feel as though everything has been shrunk to squeeze into a smaller space, something that both beginners and more experienced photographers will appreciate.

With an aggressive launch price of 399 / $699 with 18-55mm kit lens (and flash in the US), the K-m continues the recent Pentax tradition of producing well-thought out DSLRs that offer great image quality. The new Pentax K-m may not feature any great surprises, but it does offer an easy path into the often-confusing world of SLR photography.

Page 1
Introduction / Ease of Use
Page 2
Image Quality
Page 3
Sample Images
Page 4
Design
Page 5
Specifications
Page 6
Conclusion

DIWAPhotographyBLOG is a member of the DIWA organisation. Our test results for the Pentax K-m have been submitted to DIWA for comparison with test results for different samples of the same camera model supplied by other DIWA member sites.

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