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Pentax K-30 vs K-5 IIs Cross Sections

On display at Photokina · 09-30-2012 · By PF Staff in Photokina 2012
Pentax K-30 vs K-5 IIs Cross Sections

For those interested in the inner workings and structure of a Pentax K-30, a body which was sliced in half was put on display by Pentax Ricoh.  The same holds true for the Pentax K-5 IIs, shown toward the end of this post.

The autofocus module including the secondary mirror (though misaligned) is clearly visible.

K-30 Cross-Section

cut 1

Below we have a similar cut of the Pentax K-5 IIs for comparison. The two cameras are clearly built in a similar way, with the only obvious difference being that the K-5 IIs body (not just the chassis) is made of metal.

K-5 IIs Cross-Section

K-5 cut open
Click on the images for a larger version.

As you can see, a DSLR has many more components than a mirrorless camera!  The latter eliminates the mirror, AF module, pentaprism, and light meter as all readings (in general) are made directly from the sensor.

PF Staff's avatar
About the author: Various writers regularly contribute articles to the Pentax Forums homepage blog. More recent articles are published under each author's forum username. We hope you enjoy our guides and news coverage!

Tags: pentax k-30, pentax k-5 IIs, cross-section, photokina, dslr

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RonHendriks1966 [Delete] Oct 9th, 2012 8:51AM

I gues some kind of laser-cutting technic is used for these camera's. There is no cut like this from K-01 I guess, since I wonder where they won the 1 cm that it is thinner then K-5.

sungibr [Delete] Oct 4th, 2012 1:00PM

Man! How the hell they cut those things without screwning those circuits, wires and thin blades of the shutter! :o.
I think if Pentax try to make a full frame camera with a built-in battery grip, they could make it as small as a K-5 with its own battery grip.

sweetpapa [Delete] Oct 1st, 2012 11:52AM

Very cool. I never realized how big the penta prism is.

striker_ [Delete] Oct 1st, 2012 11:44AM

Next, a 645D in 2 parts.
Nah just kidding. Give it to me instead. :)

philbaum [Delete] Oct 1st, 2012 11:13AM

One problem with packing things too tightly is where does the heat go. I've taken 25 minute pictures for star tracks with the K5 and not had a problm. Sony Nex has had some heat dissipation problems.
@piledon - I should have said empty spce vice "extra space". my point, if i had one, was to note the space advantages of going mirrorless - i'd like to see Pentax give it another try.

Nesster [Delete] Oct 1st, 2012 7:25AM

So this confirms Pentax is coming out with a half frame APS-C camera? :)

hjb981 [Delete] Oct 1st, 2012 7:14AM

I do not think that it looks THAT densely packed. There are little empty spaces throughout the camera, for example behind the sensor. I think it would be possible to produce a FF camera in more or less K-5 size. Naturally, some things will need to be a certain size, like the prism, mirror, sensor etc, but many other things could be shrunk. Just as an example: think of a normal-sized laptop, then ask yourself if you think that it would be possible to down-size it to something like 10 cm x 5 cm and less than 1 cm thick. Then think of any smartphone (iPhone, Samsung, etc). The only problematic part I can see with downsizing the electronics is that it could be harder to achieve an imaging processing system with low noise. I remain optimistic! :)

cbaytan [Delete] Oct 1st, 2012 2:30AM

I just can't believe we can buy these very complicated electro/mechanic/optic miracles around $800 nowadays, My great appreciation goes to the technology guys and the consumers of course.

curlednoodles [Delete] Oct 1st, 2012 1:46AM

People alot smarter than me built this thing!

Eulogy [Delete] Oct 1st, 2012 12:37AM

I'm still curious how one cuts a camera like this without leaving a coating of dust over all the parts...

TomB_tx [Delete] Sep 30th, 2012 9:50PM

The thickness behind the front sensor surface (image plane) is amazing to us old film camera users. With film the back of the camera is about where the back of the sensor is here. It looks like the SR mounting for the sensor adds quite a bit of thickness. I could easily live without SR for a thinner camera.
The FF film cameras have the larger part of the pentaprism forward from this smaller prism, into the space where the AF points display and flash fit on the K-5.

raimaster [Delete] Sep 30th, 2012 8:25PM

Well, seems pentax has no chance to built FF camera in similar size as K5s body.

Bryan [Delete] Sep 30th, 2012 8:23PM

What will take Pentax to upgrade the AF module to the same as in k-30. A K-5 III?

Alizarine [Delete] Sep 30th, 2012 8:08PM

Hmm, I never thought the light meter was actually behind the pentaprism...

piledon [Delete] Sep 30th, 2012 7:17PM

Well, philbaum, that's not exactly "extra space". The "flange focal distance" for K-mount is 45.46mm. Yeah Pentax could shrink it but compatibility with all those great lenses we all have would no longer exist.

Laurentiu Cristofor [Delete] Sep 30th, 2012 5:21PM

SLR guts.

Canada_Rockies [Delete] Sep 30th, 2012 5:06PM

Thanks for posting this! A cutaway of an Asahi Pentax is much simpler.

sam-joseph [Delete] Sep 30th, 2012 5:00PM

That's one heck of a Dremel job! Kind of explains why it takes a while to develop a new camera. There's quite a bit of stuff to cram in there.


philbaum [Delete] Sep 30th, 2012 4:19PM

Thank you for posting this. I've often thought there is probably extra space inside these things we call cameras. Hard to find any extra space within these bodies, except in the mirror box. Its easier to see from this cutaway and the mirrorless comments, how Sony was able to create the thin slab Nex mirrorless camera. Its hard for me to tell how much space the SR plate takes up, because there is the circuit board and the lcd behind the sensor. Complexity is amazing.