updated 12:15 am EDT, Thu June 23, 2011
Camera offers new Q-Mount lens system
Pentax has launched an entirely new camera system, labeled the Q. The platform aims to compete with Micro Four Thirds SLRs, but with Pentax's own Q-Mount lenses. The company claims it is offering the "world's smallest and lightest body" for an interchangeable design, constructed using a magnesium alloy. Like many small DSLRs, the Q lacks an optical viewfinder; users must rely on a three-inch LCD with 460,000-dot resolution and a viewing angle claimed to reach 170 degrees.
The Q integrates a 12.4-megapixel CMOS sensor, backlit for low-noise capture at high ISO levels, however its 1/2.3-inch size is significantly smaller than that of Micro Four Thirds and other compact interchangeable-lens platforms. Users will be able to shoot 1080p video at 30fps, a higher frame-rate than the company's full-size K-5 DSLR. The sensor also benefits from sensor-shift stabilization, which provides the same level of shake reduction with any lens.
The specs also point to still shooting at up to 5 frames per second, with 1/2000- to 30-second shutter speeds. Users will be able to choose from standard DSLR shooting modes, with a customizable quick dial and bokeh control filter for digital alteration of depth-of-field in images.
The Q body will be paired with a variety of specialty lenses, including a range of prime, zoom, and fisheye options, among others. Users will be able to purchase a shoe-mounted optical viewfinder, which provides framing marks for the standard lens.
The Q will be available this fall for $800 with a black or white body and standard 47mm f/1.9 prime lens, while the 24-80mm f/2.8-4.5 lens will fetch an additional $300.