Full, In-Depth Review of Pentax K-01

Discussion in 'Other Systems' started by Biro, Mar 12, 2012.

  1. Biro

    Biro Mu-43 All-Pro

    May 8, 2011
    Jersey Shore
    A full, in-depth review of the Pentax K-01 is now up on Pentax Forums. One might think that it would be biased in favor of the camera since it's a Pentax site, but Adam is (and has always been) quite fair and points out what he thinks are strengths and weaknesses of the K-01 without pulling punches.

    Pentax K-01 Review - Introduction - PentaxForums.com
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  2. Narnian

    Narnian Nobody in particular ...

    Aug 6, 2010
    Richmond, VA
    Richard Elliott
    Thanks for pointing this out.

    I am seriously considering getting this or a NEX 5 for my adapted lenses. Obviously the drawback here is that it will only work with Pentax lenses, but half of my lenses are Pentax K mount. And the lack of required adapters means easier lens changing (if you have one adapter) or "smaller" lenses (if you have adapters for each lens like I do).

    Peak focusing would be tremendous and Oly and Panny seem to be dropping the ball on that feature.

    And the larger sensor is also a big plus.
  3. lenshoarder

    lenshoarder Mu-43 All-Pro

    Nov 7, 2010
    Seems to be a well built and well designed camera. Some discounted it as being ergonomically ungainly purely from it's looks, but according to this review "they got it right" when it comes to handling. It's definitely on the to buy list on my next trip to Japan.
  4. dhazeghi

    dhazeghi Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Aug 6, 2010
    San Jose, CA
    Actually, I think the author glosses over one important point:

    If Pentax has simply updated the K-r to the K-5's sensor, you'd have a camera that was only marginally larger than the K-01, could do everything the K-01 can, and could do many things the K-01 can't.

    The K-01 is all of the disadvantages of mirrorless (slow AF, poor VF in the sun, strange ergonomics) with none of the advantages (much smaller bodies and lenses).

    Pentax is already in a precarious position, and I don't think the K-01 bodes well for their future. It'll sell okay in Japan where mirrorless and colored cameras are the current fad, but nowhere else.

  5. meyerweb

    meyerweb Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Sep 5, 2011
    DH, your third paragraph (disadvantages) is what I was just about to say. If I wanted a body to use with Pentax lenses, I'd just bite the bullet and buy a K5.
  6. starlabs

    starlabs Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Sep 30, 2010
    Los Angeles
    Perhaps Mr Flores can chime in once he's had a good run through with the K01.

    I'm also not sure of what the appeal of this camera is. It's only slightly smaller than the K-5. Aside from the price, I'd just get the K-5 then.

    Having said that, the price is a really big deal. Like half priced!
  7. pxpaulx

    pxpaulx Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jan 19, 2010
    I've seen it side-by-side with an e-p1, and it isn't a whole lot larger than that. With a host of small primes that Pentax already has, I think it'll sell reasonably well, if only to current owners.

    Lets cut to the jib on your second paragraph. I've been using Pentax cameras for about 7 years now, heard this old BS with every new camera release, so, do you have anything new or relevant to actually say about the state of Pentax? For as long as I've owned their cameras, they are finally actually owned by a company that wants to grow the brand, so how on earth can they be worse off? In a word, I would describe the brand as thriving. They are very similar to Olympus in many respects, innovative and willing to step out on a limb. I appreciate both brands for those exact same qualities.
  8. Aegon

    Aegon Mu-43 Veteran

    Nov 3, 2011
    Portland, OR
    It costs less because PDAF, prism-metering, reflex mirror, and prism are expensive, tight tolerance parts. Chop them off and reduce the cost of manufacturing significantly.

    The K-r could be bought for around $400 on a good day. In comparison, a black friday GF2 can cost about $200. If you used similar sensor technology as a GF2 (as opposed to a backlit sony unit), you could conceivably reduce the price of a K-01-like camera down to the very low GF2 prices, or maintain a healthy profit margin. As it stands, the K-01 is still a pretty good price for the sensor. For example, if this type of Sony sensor existed in ยต4/3 at $700, it would sell until the UPS truck breaks down.

    I can't speak much about the desirability of the K-01. I have a K-5 and I'm happy. But when the next upgrade arrives and the K-02 at $700 sits next to the K-3 at $1300, I'm not sure I'd pay extra for the mirror.
  9. dhazeghi

    dhazeghi Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Aug 6, 2010
    San Jose, CA
    It weighs 40% more and is 30% thicker. That's not a trivial amount, if size and weight are a concern.

    Compare that to the Pentax K-r which weighs a mere 6% more, and is only 12% thicker.

    But the K-r can AF quickly when it needs, offers an OVF when lighting precludes the use of the back LCD, and can do everything else the K-01 can. The only thing needed is a sensor upgrade. The pricing would have been the same.

    Take it easy. I didn't say that your lovely Pentax gear is somehow inferior or will stop working soon. Fact is that they're a niche player, and that the camera industry is changing rapidly. Look at Olympus. As they've demonstrated for the past 5 years, being innovative isn't enough. In spite of recent successes, they are still losing money on cameras. If you think that's a good thing, or a state that can continue indefinitely, just look at Kodak.

    Pentax has traditionally had a number of strengths. Size. Ruggedness. Good quality prime lenses. Value. A certain rugged style. Those are the things they should be focusing on, not digging into ever tinier niches as they have with Pentax Q and now the K-01.

  10. rparmar

    rparmar Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jun 14, 2011
    Limerick, Ireland
    Exactly. But Pentax have no idea what they are doing. First, they release the 645D, with only two lenses. That's hardly going to impress anyone who needs a working system. Neither are professionals going to go chasing old used lenses on eBay. First, they don't have the time and second they need warranties and support that simply aren't there.

    Second, they release the Q, a toy camera (their words). A cool-looking thing, well made no doubt, but with a sensor too small to matter. And lenses deliberately tweaked to render silly pictures. Most people who want that simply use their iPhone.

    Third, they come out with the ugly and dysfunctional K-01. It's too big to have the advantages of a mirrorless, has no viewfinder even with all its heft (not even an optional EVF), and isn't weather-proof either. The only way they can make the system look small is to release a series of lenses specially designed for it. But these won't be compatible with the K-mount SLRs... which means they are effectively introducing yet another lens mount. They may as well have created a smaller register mount in the first place, released a fully-coupled K-mount adapter, and had all the advantages. But that would have made too much sense.

    Fourth, their lens map shows an emphasis on zooms and only one prime, once again in the 50mm range. :rolleyes: 

    It seems that Pentax are actually trying really hard to discard all of their advantages as a brand. I say this as someone who has bought five of their SLRs and invested thousands in their lenses.

    I have absolutely no faith that Ricoh will make a difference. I await evidence to the contrary. And in the meantime I am investing in MFT.
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  11. John M Flores

    John M Flores Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jan 7, 2011
    Somerville, NJ
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