Sep 102010
 

Unless you have a box of Pentax lenses lying around, there’s little reason to buy a Pentax SLR: Nikon, Canon and even Sony are the places where innovation and competition are forging the best cameras around. On the other hand, those boring companies don’t make their SLRs in anything other than practical black. With Pentax’ new K-r, you have a choice of red, black or white.

Inside the candy-coating, Pentax has added a 12MP sensor (with ISO up to 25,600 in extended mode) which can capture photos at a speedy 6 frames-per-second and also 720p video. Round the back is a 921,000-dot LCD-screen and inside the pentamirror-viewfinder (not the brighter pentaprism found on its older brother, the K-7) the active focus-point is now illuminated. See? It’s pretty dull stuff.

Going on the spec sheet alone, this camera could be judged as competent, in the same way an accountant might be described “competent” (a desirable, if unexciting trait). If you’re expecting me to say that the camera makes up for this with personality, you’ll be disappointed. The only quirk is that it can use AA-batteries as well as the supplied lithium-ion cell. Again, useful, but it’s no in-camera HDR, or iTTL-Flash control-system.

If you can stay awake long enough to make it to the store, the K-r will cost $800 with the included 18-55mm kit lens, which puts it smack between the high-end K-7 and the toylike K-x. Available October. Zzzzz.

Pentax K-r press release [DP Review]

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