|Pentax K100D D-SLR review : This year Pentax have given their series of digital SLR cameras another complete update. This means we finally see the end of the rather ridiculous name *ist D; which didn't exactly appeal to the imagination, if you even managed to pronounce it at all. The new series digital SLR cameras now go by the names of K100D, K110D and K10D. Although these may all seem to be rather random names upon first glance, things couldn't be more different. The -K refers to the beginnings of the Pentax K-bayonet, which marks its 30th anniversary this year. All in all, a careful choice, and far from unfounded. With the reference to the K-bayonet, Pentax assert that they intend to be a force to be reckoned with, just as they have been in the past. Their new series of digital SLR cameras illustrates this perfectly. We had the opportunity to test the Pentax K100D, the successor of the *ist DS2.
Pentax K100D DSLR - Shake Reduction
When comparing the looks of the Pentax K100D to those of the *ist DS2, you will not immediately be struck by an array of outward differences. Once again, the new model is a very small DSLR camera, featuring an attractive, solid housing and a 2.5-inch monitor on the back. Just like the *ist DS2, the Pentax K100D uses Secure Digital flash memory cards to store the images. The real changes and innovations of the K100D are internal. The image sensor too has remained unaltered, and it must be said that with the 6 Megapixels that the K100D offers, Pentax aren't quite keeping up with the competition. However, the sensor does feature a special asset. Just as with Sony, and formerly Konica Minolta, the sensor is able to move in order to prevent blur caused by movement of the photographer's hand. Pentax call this technique Shake Reduction; which works in a similar way as we saw with Konica Minolta. Could it be that Pentax have actually purchased Konica Minolta's patent?
Pentax K100D SLR camera - Penta-mirror
Although the Pentax K100D greatly resembles its predecessor, the Shake Reduction certainly isn't the only difference or innovation. Whilst the *ist DS2 still featured a prism in the viewfinder, Pentax have equipped the Pentax K100D with a penta-mirror instead. The light is now sent to the lens via mirrors; a construction that is both cheaper and more light-weight. Unfortunately, however, this often also tends to negatively affect the brightness of the viewfinder.
Pentax K100 D - Digital preview
A remarkable function is the digital preview, which enables you to check the depth of field on the monitor before capturing your image. In fact, you will already be taking a photo, but the difference is that the Pentax K100D will store it in the buffer, instead of instantly writing it onto the memory card. In practice, however, this function did not prove particularly handy; I much rather prefer a depth of field check in the viewfinder. Fortunately, this function is also available on the Pentax K100D!
Pentax K100D - Improved image quality
To improve the image quality, Pentax have equipped their K100D with new algorithms, which should -among other things- help to reduce noise. Not that Pentax users had any reason to complain! Pentax even offer prospective users of a K100D the chance to work with ISO 3200; a unique feature in this class of DSLR cameras. The speed of the camera, which formed a major disadvantage of the Pentax *ist DS2, is another feature that promises improvement. The auto focus provides you with eleven focus points, nine of which are cross-type sensors.
Pentax K100D digital reflex camera review
As far as specifications are concerned, the Pentax K100D seems to be a mid-segment camera. However, nothing could be further from the truth; Pentax are in fact aiming at the lower segment, something that only becomes apparent when taking a peek at the camera's price-tag. On paper, the Pentax K100D certainly seems to offer true value for money. We had the chance to work with the Pentax K100D digital SLR camera for a considerable amount of time. The test results can be read in the following Pentax K100D DSLR review.
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