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Pentax K-5 IIs

Ergonomics 
 9.5
Build Quality 
 9.8
User Interface 
 9.2
Autofocus 
 8.7
Features 
 9.3
Value 
 9.6
Image Quality 
 9.8
Noise 
 9.4
Reviews Views Date of last review
36 83,785 Fri May 13, 2016
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Recommended By Average Price Average User Rating
100% of reviewers $990.97 9.56
Pentax K-5 IIs

Pentax K-5 IIs
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Pentax K-5 IIs
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Description:

The Pentax K-5 IIs DSLR like the Pentax 645D has no anti-alias filter in front of the sensor and thus promises higher resolution and cleaner images than the K-5 II. In return there is a chance that moirť patterns become visible.

Other than the lack of an anti-alias filter, the K-5 IIs is identical to the K-5 II and it is thus - like the K-5 II - a refinement of the PENTAX K-5. It shares the body construction and button layout with the K-5 except for the LCD monitor on the back. The monitor is now recessed slightly since an air-gapless technology has been used which makes the LCD monitor assembly thinner. It is still a three inch, 921,000 dot monitor like on the predecessor, but the outer glass is tempered so as to be scratch resistant and an anti-glare filter has been added improving viewing in bright light.

The main enhancement over the K-5 is not the LCD monitor but the autofocus system. The new system is dubbed SAFOX X and has increased sensitivity - it now works down to EV -3, which is class leading according to Pentax. Pentax also claims that not only is SAFOX X more sensitive, it is also faster and more accurate, a claim we will take a look at when we get a unit in for review. It has 11 focus points of which 9 are the cross-sensitive type; this is just like the original K-5.

Like on the K-30, the K-5 IIs incorporates the select-area expansion function so that the subject will be tracked even if it moves away from the autofocus point selected by the user. The camera will use the adjacent focus points to keep the moving subject in focus.

Other than that, the K-5 IIs has the same specifications and features as the K-5, hereunder a rugged, dustproof but lightweight body, a high burst rate of 7 fps, high dynamic range,† a viewfinder with 100% coverage, sensor-shift shake reduction, ultra sonic dust removal, in-camera RAW processing and image editing, live view and movie mode.

Like the K-5, the K-5 IIs also offers a choice of shutter-release options - between focus priority and release priority in the AF.S (single) advance mode, or between focus priority and speed priority in the AF.C (continuous) advance mode - to make the photographer better equipped for varying photographic requirements.

Major features subsequently added through firmware updates:

  • Version 1.05: AF assist light function made compatible with the new flashes, AF360FGZ II and AF540FGZ II

Camera Manual:


Pentax K-5 IIs
Year Introduced
2012
In Production
No
Current US Price
N/A
In-Depth Review
Click to Read
Sensor
Sensor Format
APS-C
Sensor Type
CMOS
Megapixels
16.28
Resolution
3264 x 4928 pixels
AA Filter
No
Super Resolution
No
Bit Depth
14
Minimum ISO
80
Maximum ISO
51200
ISO Range
100 - 12800 (80 - 51200)
Imaging
Exposure Modes
Green, HyP, Sv, Av, Tv, TAv, HyM, X, B, User(5)
Program Modes
Auto, Normal, Action, Depth of field (deep/shallow), MTF
Maximum FPS
7
Continuous Shooting
Hi: 7 fps up to approx. 34 frames (JPG), up to approx. 26 frames (PEF/DNG), Lo: 2 fps until card is full (JPG), up to appox. 40 frames (PEF/DNG)
Shutter Speeds (Auto)
30s - 1/8000s (stepless)
Shutter Speeds (Manual)
B, 30s - 1/8000s. Up to 300s in Astrotracer mode
Shutter Life
100000
Exposure compensation
+/-5 EV (+/- 2 EV in movie mode)
Auto bracketing
2, 3 or 5 frames, one-push bracketing
Expanded dynamic range
Highlight (on, off), Shadow (high, medium, low, off)
Exposure lock
Yes
Self timer
2 s with mirror lock-up, 12 s
Metering Sensor
77-Segment
Meter range
0 to 22 EV
Meter pattern
Multi-Segment,Center Weighted,Spot
Mirror lock-up
Yes
Interval shooting
Up to 999 frames, up to 24 hours between frames
HDR mode
Yes
Multiple exposures
Yes, average and additive, 2 to 9 shots
Pixel mapping
Yes
Scene Modes
None
Restrictions
Exposure modes with M and K lenses are restricted to Av (with aperture always wide open) and M (with stop-down metering)
Lens Mount
Mount
KAF2 (no aperture coupler)
Composition Adjustment
Yes
Stabilization
Yes (sensor-shift SR)
Power zoom
Supported (zoom only)
Supported Lenses
All Pentax K-mount lenses except for lenses with the KAF4 mount variant. Manual focus only with K-, M-, and A-series lenses. Stop down metering only with K- and M-series lenses. M42, Pentax 645 and Pentax 6x7 lenses with the appropriate adapters (stop down metering and manual focus only).
Lens correction
Distortion,Lateral Chromatic Aberration
Focusing
Autofocus (viewfinder)
Yes (SAFOX X, 11 focus points (9 cross type))
AF Points
11
Autofocus sensitivity
-3 EV
Front/back focus correction
Yes (adjustment for up to 20 lenses)
Autofocus with SDM
Yes
Autofocus assist
Dedicated LED
Viewfinder/LCD
Viewfinder
0.92x, 100%
Viewfinder type
Pentaprism
Diopter adjustment
-2.5 to +1.5
AF Points in viewfinder
Yes
Exchangeable screen
Yes
Depth of field preview
Yes
Digital preview
Yes (with image magnificaion)
Live View
Yes
Top LCD
Yes
Focus Peaking
No
Back LCD
3 in., 921,000 dots (VGA)
Body
Weather resistant
Yes
Control wheels
2
Battery grip
D-BG4 (takes D-LI90 or 6x AA)
Card slots
1
Dust removal
Yes, Ultrasonic DR II
Dust alert
Yes
Memory card type
SD, SDHC, SDXC
Size (W x H x D)
130.5 x 96.5 x 72.5 mm
Weight
660 g (740 g with battery and SD card)
File format
PEF (RAW),DNG (RAW),JPG,AVI
Battery life
740 images (50% flash usage). Playback time: 440 minutes
Battery
D-LI90 lithium-ion rechargeable
Flash
Built-in flash
Yes, GN 13 (ISO 100/m)
Sync speed
1/180s
P-TTL flash
Yes
Flash functions
Auto discharge, On (leading curtain sync), Redeye reduction, Slow-speed sync, Trailing curtain sync, High-speed sync*, Manual*, Wireless*, Contrast control*
* Available when combined with external flash
TTL flash
No
Flash exposure comp
-2 to 1 EV
Video
Resolution / Framerates
1920x1080 (16:9 Full HD) at 25 fps,
1280x720 (16:9) at 30 or 25 fps,
640x480 (4:3) at 30 or 25 fps,
Motion JPEG (AVI)
Exposure Modes
P (auto-aperture), Av
Movie mode restrictions
Av:The aperture can be set manually before recording and is fixed during recording
AF During Recording
No
Sound in Movie mode
Stereo (external mic), Mono (built-in mic)
Interfacing
GPS
Via Accessory
Tethering
Wired (unofficial)
Connectivity
USB 2.0, AV out, HDMI out, 3.5mm stereo mic, DC in, X-sync, cable release
Latest Firmware
Version 1.07
Notes
Astrotracer compatible, Electronic level, Embed copyright information in EXIF, High ISO NR can be customized for each major ISO value. Image plane indicator. In-camera RAW development. Save last JPG as RAW. The RAW button is customizable and can perform a variety of functions, hereunder exposure bracketing. The 11 autofocus points cover a wider area of the image than on previous models.
Megapixels: 16.3
ISO Range: 80 - 51,600
Weight: 660 g
FPS: 7
LCD: 3 inch, 921,000 dots
In Production: Buy the Pentax K-5 IIs
Type: Prosumer/Advanced Amateur
Weather Sealed: Yes
In-Depth Review: Read our Pentax K-5 IIs in-depth review!



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Site Supporter

Registered: August, 2013
Posts: 663
Review Date: May 13, 2016 I can recommend the Pentax K-5 IIs: Yes | Price: $450.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Build, IQ, Button Layout
Cons: TTL
New or Used: New   

You cannot beat the used price for this camera!

I already own and love my K-5ii. I some how broke the back LCD and there is a narrow line in the display that is starting to go out. This doesn't ruin the camera, but I didn't want it to suddenly go out while I was on a shoot. I decided to buy a back up camera and found my K-5iis for $450 on ebay hardly used.

I have to say, the slight improvement in IQ is noticeable in some situations and as always, the camera is awesome and a joy to use. I notice the grain in the image is more pleasing to me than the K-5ii and I do see sharper images. I used the camera for some studio work with my 50-135mm and the images were SHARP!!! I couldn't believe the level of detail I was getting out of this camera.

Cons: Well P-TTL with a flash can be odd. Sometimes the subject is blown out, sometimes they look fine. I understand this is a vary common issue with all K-5 cameras. I also understand the K-3 and going further is fixed .This is my only gripe with the camera. I end up using flash exposure compensation and it fixes the issue most of the time. If it still doesn't work I just switch to manual and that usually fixes it right up.

This is now my primary camera for photo work. I use my K-5ii as a back up and travel camera. If you are looking to step up to this camera or simply want a high value used camera, look no further. This camera rocks.

BTW, My sharpest images have been captured with the Sigma 17-50mm 2.8 and the Pentax 50-135mm 2.8. With all the money you will save buying a used K-5iis, go and get one of these awesome lenses and you will be so blown away at your images.
   
Pentaxian

Registered: January, 2012
Location: Tokyo
Posts: 1,184
Review Date: May 6, 2016 I can recommend the Pentax K-5 IIs: Yes | Price: $550.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Great image quality and noise performance, solid build and ergonomics
Cons: Autofocus can be frustrating, unusable live view, inconsistent metering

Iíve had the K-5 IIs for about a year now, and on the whole Iím happy with it, but not unreservedly. I started off with a K20D, which I no longer use, and then moved on to a K-01. The idea of the K-5 IIs was to use it as my ďseriousĒ camera, while I continue to use the K-01 as a compact walk-around camera.

The K-5 IIs is so solidly built, it feels like itís hewn out of stone. It feels great in the hand, and seems at home with a mid-sized zoom. The positioning of the controls is just right for me, but I do miss the direct switch for SR on/off that the K20D had. Images are really clean and have great dynamic range. The shadow detail gives a lot of latitude to brighten underexposed areas of images. I think this is a step up from the K-01 sensor. I havenít had any problem with moire in my images so far.

The parts that disappointed me are the focusing system and metering system, which both seem to behave in a rather unpredictable way. When I consider my lenses, about half of them focus better on the K-5 IIs and others work better on the K-01 (notably the FA77). When the metering is off, it errs on the side of underexposure. Fortunately, the files are so clean that it is usually possible to brighten the image afterwards without ill effects. Live view is just a wasted button on this camera. It takes so long to lock focus and fire the shutter that you can only use it for static subjects. Having got used to live view on the K-01, it feels restrictive to be effectively forced to do the opposite and shoot through the viewfinder the whole time.

I think my reservations are quite particular to me, and most would have been solved by going for the K-3. But overall Iím satisfied, because I got a very capable and user friendly DSLR for the equivalent of $550.
   
Senior Member

Registered: December, 2012
Posts: 146
Review Date: July 19, 2015 I can recommend the Pentax K-5 IIs: Yes | Price: $495.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Built quality, ergonomics, IQ, WR, battery life, multiple lens AF Fine Adjustment, DNG, custom USER modes, TAv mode, quiet for a reflex
Cons: Grip should be taller, extremelly slow playback image review, average metering and WB performance, not recommended for video, check flash system for usability, body mount cover, AF not tracking
Years Owned: 1/4    Ergonomics: 9    Build Quality: 10    User Interface: 9    Autofocus: 8    Features: 9    Value: 10    Image Quality: 10    Noise: 9    New or Used: Used   

I have previously owned a Pentax K-5 II body, that I used semi-professionally for portrait and fashion photography.

After a move abroad I went back to street photography only to realise why I had abandoned the Pentax DSLR APS system: the lack of a 35mm FOV FF equivalent...

I decided to try the Olympus Micro Four Thirds System and bought an OM-D E-M5 with a grip and a Panasonic 1,7/20mm.
The white balance and more noticeably the metering and the image stabilization were an improvement over the K-5 II and I really like the lightweight and smaller size of the combo but despite that I was never able to adapt to the OVF or the poor ergonomics and cryptic menus; on top of that the E-M5 would eat through 3 or 4 batteries in a single day.

What I said for the K-5 II stands true for this camera, which exhibits an improvement over the "AA-filtered" version in sharpeness at the expense of a bit more noise (apparently).
You can read my review of the K-5 II here:

https://www.pentaxforums.com/camerareviews/pentax-k-5-ii.html#review1388

I should add that the in-camera mic is ridiculously bad...
   
Veteran Member

Registered: July, 2007
Location: Stockport, Manchester. UK
Posts: 377
Review Date: April 20, 2015 I can recommend the Pentax K-5 IIs: Yes | Price: $640.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Improvement over the K-5, Better AF, Less noise. Sharpness, DR
Cons: Some DA lenses hate it, yet older lenses love it.
Years Owned: less than 1 month    Ergonomics: 10    Build Quality: 10    User Interface: 10    Autofocus: 9    Features: 10    Value: 10    Image Quality: 10    Noise: 10    New or Used: New   

I just had to put this camera as a solid 10. Why? Well as an existing K-5 user for over 4 years, which cost me UK£900, I was in the market for an additional body to replace my K20D as the backup. As the K-5IIs had recently been discontinued, it was available brand new from a chain in the UK for a mere £430.
Considering that This camera was £1200 when it first came out, that makes a rather big discount.
I did consider the K-3, but already having the grip for the K-5 and the fact that the body was £300-£400 LESS, it was really a no brainer.

So what is it like, and is it really an improvement over the K-5 mk1?

Firstly, it is just like the mk1, same body, same menus, but with the gapless LCD which is a bonus.
AF? Yes it is better, a lot better, low light for focusing? no problem. normal light? Faster. Still not in the same league as the upmarket CaNikon's of this world, but far faster than their entry level stuff.
Write speed. Well this could be due to the fact I bought a pair of 85MB SDHC cards, but there is a fantastic improvement in writing to cards.

Image quality.

This is where the the K-5IIs trumps the K-5 and then some. Don't forget the K-5 is no mean camera with fantastic IQ. The IIs just puts it on another level.
Sharpening of images? Nope. not needed at all. RAW files from the camera have fantastic sharpness that you do not need to do any sharpness at all (lens dependent of course)

Dynamic range? Great as usual, same is the K-5. But I think the 16MP sensor is an enhanced version by Sony over the original.

Lenses.
Now this is a crux. The body demands good lenses. I have already found that the mighty 21mm Limited shows more CA over the K-5 mk1, as does the 10-17mm Fisheye. On the other hand, the much maligned SMC-K 75-150mm F4 zoom is a delight, as is the SMC-F35-105mm lens.
Having said that, the limitations on CA control with certain lenses, can be wiped out with newer versions of lightroom.
Still some lenses lack fine detail and others show how good they really are. It does not matter how old the lens. This of course is another topic to discuss, but I have found that DA* lenses are superb, some DA are great, some not, as is the case with FA, F, M and K lenses. Strangely a couple of Sigma's have has new lease of life with the IIs as well.
Best to try all lenses you have and play.

Finally. I have noticed a considerable lack of jpg artifacts that you get with say skies.So smooth and detailed.

Seriously recommend if you don't have one, but hurry before they all disappear.
   
Pentaxian

Registered: January, 2008
Location: Brampton, ON, Canada
Posts: 1,616

1 user found this helpful
Review Date: February 1, 2015 I can recommend the Pentax K-5 IIs: Yes | Price: $700.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Just works. Dynamic range at ISO 80-400, solid feature set
Cons: Some features removed compared to earlier cameras, "pinky" native reds
Years Owned: 2    Ergonomics: 9    Build Quality: 10    User Interface: 9    Autofocus: 8    Features: 10    Value: 9    Image Quality: 9    Noise: 8    New or Used: Used   

The focusing accuracy/ required lens adjustments, while not perfect, has been much improved. Under tungsten lighting, I am still seeing some focus "float".

The bad:
- The "compare two images" feature has been removed (compared with the K-7)
- The auto-rotation of a "portrait" orientation photo to fit the whole LCD screen when rotating the camera in playback has been removed (K-7)
- Processing jpgs with the image correction settings on results in long write times.
- Flash overexposure on P-TTL
- I'm not a fan of the pink reds that this makes, compared to the K-7, or the K-200d

Wish-list:
- 100g lighter (like the K-200d or *ist DS range).
- Uncripple the mount like the competitor D7100 for use of M and K lenses.
- 1/250 flash sync

Summary:
I've enjoyed this camera. In many ways the K-5iis is unchanged from the ergonomics and operation sounds of the K-7, and that is a good thing. Not much of a learning curve. It all works.

In terms of the sensor, I'd previously purchased an Sony NEX-5n, and all LR presets I had built were supported, pretty much without a hitch. Image quality is generally very good, Dynamic range at ISO 80-400 is extremely good. For what I shoot (landscape, some people, travel), the removal of the AA filter has not resulted in image artifacts, but does seem to cause a small loss of gradation/roll-off "smoothness". Occasionally, I do see some "ropey" fine detail in shots containing feathers, hair or fur.

16mp is more than enough for my print sizes: RAW files are in the order of ~25 MB each.

For outdoor work, this camera really does make a lot of sense, especially mated to the 18-135mm WR (~1.1kg all up). Personally, I am often thinking whether to take this, or another mirrorless camera, so it has sat unused more than not. Travelling for work, it is a bit heavy (~1.1kg) in carry-on luggage.

It's a good choice, and as of February 2015, can be had for well below $500.
   
Junior Member

Registered: November, 2014
Location: New York City
Posts: 49
Review Date: January 30, 2015 I can recommend the Pentax K-5 IIs: Yes | Price: $529.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Light,ergonomically awesome!
Cons: N/A
Years Owned: 3 months    Ergonomics: 10    Build Quality: 10    User Interface: 9    Autofocus: 10    Features: 10    Value: 10    Image Quality: 10    Noise: 9    New or Used: New   

I owned a Ricoh (still have it) back in High School so the only hard choice I had to make was leaving Canon after 15 years of using Canon Rebel G(film),Canon xs,Canon 40D and 50D.I felt the new Canon's seemed to be getting heavier and I wanted to start carrying a lighter camera. I was also looking at mirror less but wanted to stick with the DSLR. What won me over is that my old lens from Ricoh could still be used on the new Pentax. Pentax doesn't have a large selection of lens to choose from,but as long as I have one prime, one wide angle and a zoom I'm good.Holding off for Black Friday paid off big time, picked up the K-5IIs with a battery grip and SD card for $529.00 at B&H. So, far I've been totally impressed with this camera, the photographs are sharp and once you get the hang of the different apertures the camera performs above and beyond. Big plus is the weather sealing and ruggedness of this little beast.
   
Veteran Member

Registered: September, 2010
Location: Somewhere in the Southern US
Posts: 11,275

1 user found this helpful
Review Date: January 2, 2015 I can recommend the Pentax K-5 IIs: Yes | Price: $995.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: S-H-A-R-P, faster AF, great low light performance
Cons: wasn't free
Years Owned: 2    Ergonomics: 10    Build Quality: 10    User Interface: 9    Autofocus: 8    Features: 9    Value: 9    Image Quality: 9    Noise: 10    New or Used: New   

This is my 4th dSLR - wow. K-x was a terrific intro to Pentax and hooked me. K-r was a disappointment, sold it and got the K-5. The K-5 was a big adjustment with more features, more controls, and faster everything.

One of the big selling points for me on the iis over the original 5 was the lack of AA filters. Sharpness is a prime requisite for a camera IMHO, if great lenses are smudged by a filter then why keep paying more for great lenses when the camera just ruins their output? YMMV on that thinking but that is my perspective. So, the iis takes all the accessories that the 5 took, has no AA filter, is slightly faster and better in low light, and has the same great ergonomics and features that the 5 had - what's not to like?

I found that the iis needed fewer individual lens adjustments over the 5.

Handling, like the 7 and 5 before it, is class leading.

Power consumption is low and the grip makes it last all day with intensive shooting.

I can't comment on the video because I just don't shoot any.

Macro shots are significantly crisper with the iis over the 5. AF is a bit better, particularly in low light, but still not as snappy as my sisters Nikon

Overall build quality is outstanding. Solid, period.

Best Pentax yet IMHO and led to my finally selling my K-x when I sold my K-5.
   
Site Supporter

Registered: October, 2013
Posts: 252
Review Date: November 9, 2014 I can recommend the Pentax K-5 IIs: Yes | Price: $699.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: user friendly design and layout, great IQ
Cons: seeks on autofocus sometimes
Years Owned: less than 1    Ergonomics: 10    Build Quality: 10    User Interface: 10    Autofocus: 8    Features: 10    Value: 10    Image Quality: 10    Noise: 9    New or Used: New   

I gave this camera a pretty high rating because it deserves it IMO. I previously had the K30 and had some issues with it. I had seriously considered a Canon but I was swayed by this forum to try Pentax again, and I'm glad I did. The layout of the controls and menu are a dream for me. Shooting wildlife and insects I often have to choose different AF and exposure settings, and this camera makes it simple and quick allowing me to get the shot I was after. Using the DA-55-300 lens I can usually get a nice sharp image unless user error is involved.
I tend to trust the auto focus in birding since as you know many of the subjects don't stick around long enough for a manual focus. The lens and camera I have are a great match and pretty spot on considering the investment. I love this camera but am planning on upgrading to the K3 next year before going on a nation wide tour of national parks, and I will want an affordable and dependable 400-500 zoom as well as wide angle lens.

The pics included here are 100% crops and have minor PP for colour and contrast as I shoot with a neutral setting and bring it back in later in PP
No sharpening was done on these examples and shot in partial cloudy conditions except for the dragonfly which was in morning light at slow speeds and some wind, even so the leg spines are pretty good
and after re-size and PP is quite impressive.

http://home.comcast.net/~duskywolf/cormorant.jpg

http://home.comcast.net/~duskywolf/anhinga.jpg

http://home.comcast.net/~duskywolf/dragonfly.jpg
   
Veteran Member

Registered: March, 2012
Location: Arizona
Posts: 437

3 users found this helpful
Review Date: August 24, 2014 I can recommend the Pentax K-5 IIs: Yes | Price: $575.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Sharp, low light performance, well built, excellent feel
Cons: None yet

I use this cameras for weddings without a battery grip and after 5 hours of non stop shooing the battery meter haven't even cracked off full.

The images it produce are incredibly sharp even at 100% crop and I can tell the difference from the k50/K30 which I have also owned or currently own.

I would recommend this over a rebel or 60D any day of the week and the images it produces seem to be much more top quality and professional looking.


Hopefully one day I'll own two of these.
   
Senior Member

Registered: December, 2008
Location: RSM, CA
Posts: 277

4 users found this helpful
Review Date: May 17, 2014 I can recommend the Pentax K-5 IIs: Yes | Price: $675.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Bang for buck, pro level camera in a compact body, best APS-C sensor performance in noise/DR, excellent AF, glass LCD screen, weather sealed, refined, excellent button and dial placement, leaves no stone unturned for most photographers- and the price (aga
Cons: Raw +Jpeg processing time, and other various processing functions can be slow at times. LV battery life is about half of viewfinder use only/battery life, so be careful!
Years Owned: .2    Ergonomics: 10    Build Quality: 10    User Interface: 10    Autofocus: 9    Features: 10    Value: 10    Image Quality: 10    Noise: 10    New or Used: New   

**My review is based on a new K5IIs with firmware version 1.07**

I've used or reviewed (on my current blog - http://www.photographic-central.blogspot.com/ and previous website alphamountworld) every digital Pentax DSLR made. Particularly, the K5 chassis (that started with the K7) has a special quality all it's own. Pentax has continued using this chassis in several camera models over several years (including special edition versions with different grips, silver color and glass LCD screens) simply because when it ain't broke, don't fix it. In other words, this chassis is well received by photographers and buyers globally. The K7,5, 5II, and 5IIs have all got very high praise and marks by photographers and reviewers alike.

With that said, the K5II/s are the most recent versions of this chassis and, without hesitation, are the best models yet. The improvements over the K5 are a short list, but that list translates into almost completely removing the very short con list of the K5 to begin with. With the K5IIs, what we have now is camera that in use, does the following better than the K5:

It focuses markedly faster and more accurately in all levels of light - and especially so in lower light levels.
It's contrast detect AF mode in live view is also improved with a more accurate hit rate.

Detail, especially (fine detail) from the sensor is absolutely stunning (use a good lens, it doesn't have to be expensive, just good).

The LCD screen is tunable for color (and now contrast with current firmware) in the menu system. Physically, it's a gapless design which mates the glass protective cover directly to the LCD screen- this gives better viewing at all angles, removes the chance dust will intrude between the cover/screen, and gives you a scratch free cover that is better at hiding dirt/oil than a plastic cover.

Some minor changes to the menus have also been made, but they are few.

**I do believe the finish on the K5/K5IIs is ever so slightly grittier/duller/more heavy duty than the K5's, but that observation is not yet fact, I will update this after a direct comparison**

The list above makes the already stellar K5 impression, even that much better. Not all is perfect on the K5IIs, particularly the processing times for raw/jpeg and filter modes for example, but those too can be overcome in a new model, or, if we owners of the K5/II/IIs get a firmware update that improves processing time (that is unlikely, it is likely to be the Prime Processor that is the bottleneck). The other area that can be improved that stands out to me is the battery life when using live view, which is about 1/3 to 1/2 the battery life when using the camera normally with the optical finder.

I've seen reports on about AF tracking that could be improved on these models and while that is always desired, its not always the camera's fault per se. Pentax is not what I call a sport/action shooters brand although many photographers use their cameras and lenses for this task, and do quite well with them. They just aren't as action centric as a brand like Canon and Nikon seem to be. However, with a fast focusing HSM (or comparable type) lens, the K5IIs is quite adept at tracking and shooting fast moving subjects. The K5IIs's biggest fault here is the lack of faster focusing HSM lenses which is obviously not the cameras' fault entirely.

With advantages and cons out of the way, what remains is a camera that appeals to just about every kind of photographer on the planet. It's especially good for discreet shooting circumstances with its super quiet shutter (and HSM equipped lens), landscape photography, and bad weather and environmental circumstances. It's also a great street shooter too, it's relatively small and the use of the vast array of prime lenses keeps it unintimidating to subjects.

Literally its equipped with a very long enthusiasts' wish list of features and modes that make it extremely versatile as a photographic tool. Try reading this next sentence without stopping: With its catch in focus, multi-exposure 2-9 shot stacked single raw file, Astrotracer, interval shooting, sensor based auto-composition, HDR capture, cross processing and long list of digital filters, ultra-adjustable Jpeg output, DNG format, menu/button LCD customizations, auto-copyright encryption, dustalert/high speed sonic dust removal, AF fine tuning (20 lenses), and one touch auto bracketing options, it is a literal powerhouse of a camera ready for almost any kind of assignment. You still with me?

With all this said, there are many other areas and features I'm leaving out to the reader here. I haven't even touched on its 100% accurate pentaprism viewfinder, vast external controls, top mounted illuminated LCD screen, weather sealing, coldproofness, or many other features of this camera that make it pretty darn compelling to even the harshest critic.

With all that is inside though, what makes the K5IIs so wonderful, is that its logically designed and well organized to use.This fact is probably the most important one of all. You can have every bell and whistle in a camera but if its frustrating to use it sits and gathers dust. I doubt many users would let a K5/II/IIs sit and gather dust. It's one heck of a well designed camera and a lot of fun and easy to use. The user can grow into the camera and its likely they won't grow out of its capabilities anytime soon. It's built to survive decades of enjoyment if needed too.


Wrapping up this short review, the K5IIs is indeed the best DSLR for the price on the market (if you are just comparing the body alone and not an entire DSLR system) for what you are getting along with its capabilities. The K3 is all the better still (in some key areas, and not as good in others) but it's price is higher.

Carl Garrard
   
New Member

Registered: January, 2014
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 5
Review Date: February 24, 2014 I can recommend the Pentax K-5 IIs: Yes | Price: $1,200.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Pro Built
Cons: don't come with good Glass
Years Owned: 5 months    Ergonomics: 10    Build Quality: 10    User Interface: 10    Autofocus: 10    Features: 10    Value: 10    Noise: 10    New or Used: New   

This camera is dam good i have own many and still have other Brands....i will say this of you Own a K5IIs put good Glass on it .......... Auto focus: work well with good Glass
   
Moderator

Registered: June, 2010
Location: The Great Pacific Northwet
Posts: 8,795
Review Date: February 20, 2014 I can recommend the Pentax K-5 IIs: Yes | Price: $699.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: No Anti Alias filter, weather sealing, good ISO performance, build quality, ubiquitous K mount, live view, I could go on forever!
Cons: Really?
New or Used: New   

Was waiting for the release of what was ultimately the K3. I had been holding out for a full fame DSLR from Pentax, and when the K3 came out without it, the choice was clear.

So as soon as the price dropped a bit, I snatched one up, complete with a grip and extra battery.

I am confident that this camera will get the job done, and do it well. And of course the legendary K mount will ensure that all my lenses will continue to be useful for many years to come.

One of the first features I noticed that I know I will really like is the button on the mode dial that prevents it from being accidentally moved. I am always making accidental changes to the settings on my K10.
   
Forum Member

Registered: April, 2010
Location: Erie, PA
Posts: 65

1 user found this helpful
Review Date: October 30, 2013 I can recommend the Pentax K-5 IIs: Yes | Price: $1,000.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Fast, Crazy sharp, ergonomics,low light autofocus
Cons: super sentitive to reds but once dialed down not a problem

This is my second DSLR and was upgraded from the K-x. First off...i shoot everything. Did 2 weddings, countless concerts and already have over 100,000 clicks on this camera. Its been in the rain, the cold, left in the car a 100 degrees. Not even a hiccup so far.
Its small enough that i can take it anywhere with a small lens and have enough addons to it with the battery grip and gps-o1 that i can take it out for a week and not worry. I can use any lens on it too...the kit lens from the k-x works awesome on the camera and is razor sharp.
My favorites for far:
1. ISO 6400 and above is usable when you can use a flash. it is possible to shoot at night handheld with this camera with some practice and get competition worthy results.
2. Fits my hand perfectly and the screen and menus are very easy to learn..especially for someone just picking it up.
3. Much faster autofocus than the k-x and spot in low light. I've locked on in almost dark conditions and still got the shot.
4. Accessories like the gps-01 make it awesome for astrophotography,
5. Extremely reliable. I expect another 100,000 more clicks at least.
6. Did i say sharp? Yes. i very rarely have to use the sharpening tool when i shoot landscapes.
   
New Member

Registered: January, 2013
Posts: 3
Review Date: October 24, 2013 I can recommend the Pentax K-5 IIs: Yes | Price: $1,200.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Typical Pentax design for true enthusiasts. Everything where you need it
Cons: A bit of a learning curve as it's designed for serious enthusiasts
Years Owned: 1    Ergonomics: 9    Build Quality: 10    User Interface: 9    Autofocus: 10    Features: 10    Value: 10    Image Quality: 10    Noise: 10    New or Used: New   

This issue cleared up a lot of the shortfalls of the K20D
   
Site Supporter

Registered: September, 2011
Location: Richland, Washington, USA
Posts: 873
Review Date: October 15, 2013 I can recommend the Pentax K-5 IIs: Yes | Price: $1,000.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: IQ, Build, Size
Cons: Wish it had focus peaking
Years Owned: Less than a year    Ergonomics: 10    Build Quality: 10    User Interface: 9    Autofocus: 8    Features: 9    Value: 10    Image Quality: 10    Noise: 9    New or Used: New   

A terrific camera. For the size and money the best out there. I've been using it for 6 months and I've never seen a moire problem, which was my biggest worry. I would buy this again.
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