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Pentax K-5

Build Quality 
User Interface 
Image Quality 
Reviews Views Date of last review
131 534,501 Mon February 26, 2018
Recommended By Average Price Average User Rating
98% of reviewers $1,006.87 9.21
Pentax K-5

Pentax K-5
Pentax K-5
Pentax K-5
Pentax K-5
Pentax K-5


The Pentax K-5 DSLR was developed using the Pentax K-7 as its base; the K-5 inherits the user-friendly operation, array of advanced features and compact, lightweight body of its predecessor, yet it is more resourceful with its high-speed, low-noise CMOS image sensor and high-performance PRIME II imaging engine.

The continuous shooting mode has a maximum speed of approximately seven images per second. It also offers a sensitivity range between ISO 80 and ISO 51200 (when expanded via a custom function) and Full HD-proportion movie recording at 1920 x 1080 pixels.

Other improvements over the K-7 are a faster autofocusing speed and an upgraded HDR (High Dynamic Range) function now usable in hand-held shooting.

The K-5 features a new-generation, wide-frame SAFOX IX+ autofocus system with 11 sensor points (with nine cross-type sensors positioned in the middle). The AF system has completely redesigned optics, and factors the light source at the time of shooting into its calculations so as to improve the accuracy of autofocus operation. It 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.

The K-5 sensor is estimated to be 2-3 stops more sensitive than that of its predecessor, the K-7, meaning that a K-5 photo taken at ISO 6400 will look about as grainy than one taken at ISO 800 with the K-7.

The launch price was US $1749.95.

Read our Full-Length Pentax K-5 Review

Discuss the Pentax K-5 here

Compare the K-5 with other DSLRs here

Major features subsequently added through firmware updates:

  • Version 1.16: Support for the HD PENTAX-DA AF 1.4x Rear Converter
  • Version 1.15: AF assist light function made compatible with the new flashes, AF360FGZ II and AF540FGZ II
  • Version 1.10: Added support for O-GPS1 Astrotracer
  • Version 1.02: Added support for SDXC memory cards

Camera Manual:

Pentax K-5
Year Introduced
In Production
No (Discontinued 2012)
Current US Price
In-Depth Review
Click to Read
Sensor Format
Sensor Type
3264 x 4928 pixels
AA Filter
Super Resolution
Bit Depth
Minimum ISO
Maximum ISO
ISO Range
100 - 12800 (80 - 51200)
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
Continuous Shooting
Hi: 7 fps up to approx. 34 frames (JPG), up to approx. 26 frames (PEF/DNG) with firmware upgrade, 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
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
Self timer
2 s with mirror lock-up, 12 s
Metering Sensor
Meter range
0 to 22 EV
Meter pattern
Multi-Segment,Center Weighted,Spot
Mirror lock-up
Interval shooting
Up to 999 frames, up to 24 hours between frames
HDR mode
Multiple exposures
Yes, average and additive, 2 to 9 shots
Pixel mapping
Scene Modes
Exposure modes with M and K lenses are restricted to Av (with aperture always wide open) and M (with stop-down metering)
Lens Mount
KAF2 (no aperture coupler)
Composition Adjustment
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
Autofocus (viewfinder)
Yes (SAFOX IX+, 11 focus points (9 cross type), light wavelength sensor)
AF Points
Autofocus sensitivity
-1 EV
Front/back focus correction
Yes (adjustment for up to 20 lenses)
Autofocus with SDM
Autofocus assist
Dedicated LED
0.92x, 100%
Viewfinder type
Diopter adjustment
-2.5 to +1.5
AF Points in viewfinder
Exchangeable screen
Depth of field preview
Digital preview
Yes (with image magnificaion)
Live View
Focus Peaking
Back LCD
3 in., 921,000 dots (VGA)
Weather resistant
Control wheels
Battery grip
D-BG4 (takes D-LI90 or 6x AA)
Card slots
Dust removal
Yes, Ultrasonic DR II
Dust alert
Memory card type
SD, SDHC (max. 32GB), SDXC via firmware update
Size (W x H x D)
130.5 x 96.5 x 72.5 mm
660 g (740 g with battery and SD card)
File format
Battery life
740 images (50% flash usage) Playback time: 440 minutes
D-LI90 lithium-ion rechargeable
Built-in flash
Yes, GN 13 (ISO 100/m)
Sync speed
P-TTL flash
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
Flash exposure comp
-2 to 1 EV
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
Sound in Movie mode
Stereo (external mic), Mono (built-in mic)
Via Accessory
Wired (unofficial)
USB 2.0, AV out, HDMI out, 3.5mm stereo mic, DC in, X-sync, cable release
Latest Firmware
Version 1.16
Astrotracer compatible (requires firmware update), 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.
Special Editions

Limited Silver (2012, with silver DA 40mm XS), Limited Silver (2011, special grip, limited SMC DA silver lenses available)

Megapixels: 16.3
ISO Range: 80-51200
Weight: 660g
FPS: 7
LCD: 3.0"
In Production: No
Type: Prosumer/Advanced Amateur
Weather Sealed: Yes
In-Depth Review: Read our Pentax K-5 in-depth review!

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Site Supporter

Registered: November, 2017
Posts: 333
Review Date: February 26, 2018 I can recommend the Pentax K-5: No | Price: $127.36 | Rating: 5 

Pros: Feel in hands and control locations
Cons: filters and cross processing
Years Owned: 0.2    Ergonomics: 10    Build Quality: 10    User Interface: 10    Autofocus: 10    Features: 4    Value: 5    Image Quality: 5    Noise: 10    New or Used: Used   

I have purchased the K-5ii and 2 k-5's in the last two months the most expensive was the most recent a k-5 for $318.00aud previous a k5 for $165.00aud and before that a k-5ii for $275.00aud.

Buying these cameras s/h one would expect the cameras set up with filters and the cross Processing and the contrast well its not the case the camera's I purchased had the features switched off and the only reason I can think these features are so poor for me is the fact the camera is made in japan where the cities are bright with colourful lights etc. The colours in the cross processing are wrong eg green over blue -wrong. Red over purple wrong if you change those colours or better still add to them you would have a far better camera and why not add more filters in the cross processing as they are just filters I had a beautiful sunrise the other day because my k5 is blan photo wise I tried cross processing and it covered the beautiful colours and added filtered colours that just look plain wrong for the natural enviroment. Photo's of holidays are taken in the more natural enviroments and to exclude this a mistake. Adam a few posts back I said your image on the soocer field was really good which it was but it had the red white and blue karma about it where as it should have been colourful but on more earthy tones. My km takes better photos and also my istd than the k-5's I have and these are older cameras than the k5 everyone is saying bigger image quality and forgetting the colour quality in saying that I do not mean bright colours there are plenty more colours than red white blue yellow.

My next attack in on the =/- ev adjustment at 0 (zero) all my cameras in the k-5 range are overexposing why is this have you forgotten how to set up the ev meter. I have to take a number of test shots to set the camera up each time I go out why because the camera is too sensitive I don't know why if you set your sensitivity it should be set. You shouldn't even have to set it in an ideal world you should just be able to grab your camera walk out and take astonishing images and upload them to the computer but this would be too easy we have to make it hard for the average Joe and let the photographer work hard to keep his identity as a photographer if those little phone cameras can take a good quality image why can't the k-5. There are some of you that will say I am shit at taking photos but with my istd and k-m I take better photos what does this mean for the k3 and the k1 will they be worse? When you look at a scene we all view it the same way and if its stunning naturally the camera should record this with all settings in the zero position.

I am self taught then went to tafe and got a certificate 4 when I taught myself I concentrated mostly on the taking a photo side of things as I wanted to be able to take an excellent shot every time. Today i had a slightly positive result with my most recent setting but the very best setting for a camera should be no special settings at all then you work from there. I'm not blaming my camera I'm blaming Ricoh for making the camera too complicated to use and forgetting their roots. -- well its not too complicated its just the settings for Ev and their filters are wrong and insufficient Possibly there could be an update with more choices in cross processing. Also a setting menu added like the k-m's one for colour and exposure or an method and also a setting to correct the incorrect ev meter somthing like the fine focus adjust. I think I found this in the form of the user settings not what I had in mind but its workable.

I love the iso range 80 to 51,200

Why don't these cameras have a list of the last 5-10 changes made in the camera so you don't have to search all the menus. also make them selectable and have the previous settings in sub menus so you can go back quickly.

I would like ti say at the moment there is a revolt against digital images being edited recently on the News a Model or actress was sueing over edited photos and I think this is a good thing as editing photos becomes art and not photography and a camera should be designed for Photographers that want an honest photo.

Well I just found a heap more settings to play with will be interesting to see the results I get with these once set. This is rather annoying having so many places with different settings these settings I found are saturation hew shados etc the ones on the four way arrows so this is possibly where there are some incorrect settings that I will need to correct.

Just found out how to use the user mode and learn't about the green mode While this is good it is extra complications Guess I'll be chompin at the bit to get some photo's. To think I have three of these to set up.

I am really starting to see a huge benefit owning K-5's one will be set up for sunrise and sunsets another for landscapes (natural & domestic) and one for water sports and each. Actually thinking it over Natural will be on each camera But still those filters are still all wrong and need extra.

Photography used to be a simple pleasure.
New Member

Registered: August, 2017
Posts: 1

1 user found this helpful
Review Date: October 3, 2017 I can recommend the Pentax K-5: Yes | Price: $420.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Quick and accurate AF,Very good auto exposure,intuitive and flexible controls,good (and tested) weather sealing, batterygrip,excellent battery life
Cons: Zoom lens a bit noisy during focusing
Years Owned: 2    Ergonomics: 9    Build Quality: 9    User Interface: 9    Autofocus: 9    Features: 9    Value: 9    Image Quality: 9    Noise: 9    New or Used: Used   

After owning and using a Pentax IST DS, Pentax K10D, Pentax K20D it was a really Progression for me.

A really good product. The high ISO performance is impressive (until to 3200). The stabilization is good, the product is really robust, not too heavy and not to big, with mounted battery grip good balance and energy reserve. This product is a little bit "old" (2010) but always good for a casual or enthusiast photographer
New Member

Registered: January, 2017
Posts: 12

1 user found this helpful
Review Date: October 1, 2017 I can recommend the Pentax K-5: Yes | Price: None indicated | Rating: 7 

Ergonomics: 8    Build Quality: 6    User Interface: 8    Features: 7    Value: 8    Image Quality: 9    Noise: 9    New or Used: Used   

After using it a couple of months I very much like how it looks and feels - It really is a looker, the size is perfect and ergonomics are very good overall. The controls are nicely made and almost everything can be adjusted via buttons. The best thing is that the old glasses can be used, which I do, and even the stabilization works with them! A special mention goes to very nice and soft shutter sound! More praises you can read from other people's reviews - I mostly agree with them.

Alas, there are some lows too. Usually you can't read about faults because people writing things like "in-depth camera reviews" are either enthusiasts or they do it in favor(/they are paid). So, here are the things that bother me most in my K-5:

- The worst is blinking in low light. When the shutter speed goes to 1/30s or below, the flash indicator starts blinking, but that's nothing yet, because in dim light flash indicator, shutter speed, ISO setting and F-setting start blinking like crazy no matter which mode you are using (except Bulb) and they blink in every three displays. That is highly annoying! In fact so annoying that I use this camera only in daylight / outdoors and I have set the back display completely black. Unfortunately I cannot turn off the other two displays. I cannot imagine the amount of wrath if I'd start shooting for example pinhole or night time photos with this camera. Just try to shoot it in low light and it's just like you've got a disco machine or something. The feature seems to be in other Pentax bodies too, so this will most probably be my first and last Pentax dslr.

- With manual lenses (I don't use auto lenses, so I don't know about them) the camera underexposes the photos by almost two full stops. That's beyond acceptance.

- After my investigations, the blinking is also caused by shitty light meter: when it reaches its limits, the blinking starts. When comparing to my Canons, the difference is Huge.

- Minor problem to light meter issues, is poor focusing screen. It's grainy and very difficult to focus in manual. For a quick repair I took my spare split image / microprism focusing screen of Canon eos450D and modified it to fit Pentax. Well, it's not perfect as it's slightly too small but otherwise it's a huge improvement to what it was.

- The back display is blurry, messy and more so because the skin grease sticks on it from my face and it's impossible to keep clean because of the poor quality material it is. I will try a screen protector in hope it would keep the display cleaner.

- As nice as the ergonomics are, there would be still room for improvements because the shutter release button is misplaced for my finger - it should be further forward. That's probably because of the front wheel they could not position the shutter button correctly.

- Why cannot I delete all the photos by using the trash bin button? Why must I dive in to the menu mess for that? Or to adjust image size? ... Every time I have to use menu is one time too many - I hate all menus and in K-5 it's a mess. Once you get a new camera, the only time that you should use the menu is the first time when you set it up and never again.

- It takes 6 hours to charge the battery!!!

- At last, I really wouldn't mind seeing the exposure meter / bar in viewfinder when using manual mode. I find it pretty difficult to adjust without any idea of exposure and now this green button thing manual shooting is in fact more automatic than manual. It would not be too hard to fix this.

All in all, K-5 is a very sophisticated camera with a nice looks. It has a good usability, but with too much features and digital wonders and helps and stuff it seems to be aimed to some gear loving novice photographer or feature freak instead of advanced or pro photographer who likes to use it manual. Also there are some fatal flaws that make the camera feel like unfinished prototype. Well, I don't mind but shoot it anyway
Site Supporter

Registered: September, 2016
Posts: 3

1 user found this helpful
Review Date: September 6, 2016 I can recommend the Pentax K-5: Yes | Price: $175.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: Build quality, external controls.
Cons: Software (menu system, playback). Not the best LCD.
Years Owned: 1    Ergonomics: 9    Build Quality: 9    User Interface: 6    Autofocus: 8    Features: 10    Value: 9    Image Quality: 9    Noise: 9    New or Used: Used   

Cross posting this review I originally wrote on the K-30, with some edits, since it's a direct comparison between the cameras:

Let my share my experience with the K-5 as compared to the K-30, as I own both cameras. Owned a K-30 from the start. Then I also got a pretty beat up but perfectly working K-5 body very cheap, since I was interested in trying out a camera with more external controls

After extensive use, I've made a list of pros for either camera, ranking each feature with one to five stars in accordance how important it is in my shooting (which may of course differ from yours...)

In my use as an amateur, IQ (*****), viewfinder (*****) and autofocus (*****) differences are academic at best between these two cameras (I know the K5 is 14 bit compared to 12 bit for the K-30 but for me that isn't an issue).

K-30 Pros:
***** Much more responsive software, better info pane layouts.
**** Markedly brighter, sharper and clearer LCD
*** Faster write speed to SD card.
** Better layout of play/trash/liveview buttons minimizing risk of hitting the wrong ones during operation.
** No lock button on the shooting mode wheel makes it easy to operate one-handed with the right thumb

K-5 Pros:
**** About twice the battery life
*** Battery grip can be added
*** Better placed green button making for faster action when stop down metering manual lenses
** Metal body as compared to plastic (My K-30 actually creaks a little when the grip is pressed firmly!)
** Better placed loops for the camera strap makes the whole camera very well balanced, especially with longer/heavier lenses
** Dedicated well placed ae-lock button
** Pretty quiet shutter
* Electronic level in the viewfinder
* easier to access stop down switch to check dof (this can be set to the raw button on the K-30)
* Top panel LCD
* Dedicated physical controls for af-mode and metering mode
* control wheels have a bit larger diameter making their haptics more enjoyable.

Actually I was a bit surprised after getting the K-5, I thought I'd be shooting it exclusively leaving the K-30 at home. As it turned out I actually prefer the K-30 in daily use. Much boils down to software: Before getting the K-5 I hadn't reflected on how much you interact with the cameras playback and menu system: and how annoying it is when these aren't as responsive as you're used to. The duller screen was a turn off as well. Before getting the K-5 I also thought I'd be using the external controls more but as it turned out it didn't save much time compared to changing settings in the info pane.

Conclusion: In amateur use It's hard to find a better bang for the buck these past years than the K-x0 series. K-7/5/3 are nice bodies but you pay a very high premium for a metal body, a few extra knobs and switches and the ability to use a battery grip. I tried a cheap chinese grip which worked fine, but also made me realise I don't need one in my shooting. The K-5 will soon be up for sale, sticking with the K-30. Cheapskate as I am I will be very interested in picking up a lightly used K-70 a couple of years down the line when I feel it's time to upgrade.
New Member

Registered: November, 2013
Posts: 5
Review Date: August 4, 2016 I can recommend the Pentax K-5: Yes | Price: $600.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: very reliable, very nice pictures, good lenses
Cons: 30 fps video, lack of digital filters as k-x, higher ISO=some noise
Years Owned: 1    Ergonomics: 9    Build Quality: 10    User Interface: 9    Autofocus: 8    Features: 10    Value: 10    Image Quality: 9    Noise: 7    New or Used: Used   

I've got a used one.

hm? only 9 points because of 30 fps video and lack of digital filters.

this camara must be fitted in program, in order to get really very sharp big photos for posters. the standard calibration is for this high price to weak.

but when parameters in program are changed optimally you'll have much fun with this DSLR
visible noise from 3200 iso
Junior Member

Registered: June, 2012
Posts: 47
Review Date: July 21, 2016 I can recommend the Pentax K-5: Yes | Price: $400.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: image quality, weather sealing, light weight
Cons: af could be better
Years Owned: 1    Ergonomics: 10    Build Quality: 10    User Interface: 10    Autofocus: 7    Features: 9    Value: 9    Image Quality: 9    Noise: 8    New or Used: Used   

still a good camera in 2016, dxomark 82 says everything. beats Canon 5d mark ii in some aspects. Way better than nikon d7000. Only improvement needed is af speed.
Veteran Member

Registered: November, 2013
Location: Barcelona
Posts: 333
Review Date: January 4, 2016 I can recommend the Pentax K-5: Yes | Price: $250.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Low Isos, High Iso, Low noise, Fast AF, Image Quality, A step forward
Cons: AV mode not taking great photos
Years Owned: 1    Ergonomics: 9    Build Quality: 6    User Interface: 9    Autofocus: 9    Features: 10    Value: 10    Image Quality: 9    Noise: 9    New or Used: Used   

I bought my K5 in Japan, in a second hand store with a low milleage in photos taken and in perfect conditions for 250€.
At the time it was a bargain as you could find it in Europe for 450€ body only.

This is definitelly a step forward from a Kr, and i am delighted with that machine. It is a semi-professional camera (or some say so) with manual controls everywhere, no more automatic modes that you don't need anymore, and plenty of buttons easy to undersand and well located.

I love the camera because it's light, compact, easy to carry around and because of it's performance. I usually shoot at racing cars, and it's TV mode and its buffer are great for action sports, and at 7fps I think it's pretty great, now I am not missing a photo.

The AF is quite better than Kr's for me, and it's a step forward in quality, in sharpness of the image, sounds better when shooting, it's not a noisy machine as the Kr can be, it is great in high ISO.

The sealed body is awesome, I have been shooting at snow places, during rainy days and at very dusty events and you can be sure non of those would get inside your camera, wich to me is a great step forward.

Combine this camera with the smc Pentax F 50mm f1.7, or the Sigma 100-300mm F4 and you'll get SHARP SHARP SHARP images, as you always dreamed about. I believe it's sensor, and the camera itself improve those lense's qualities to an outstanding level.

The only awakeness point is the AV mode, or I don't get it right, or the camera uses to over expose my shots constantly.

It is true that it's AF can make you miss some shots, but wich Pentax camera doesn't?

Overall it is a great camera, and nowadays that prices are lowering down, just get one at a great price, you'll get a bargain on an great piece of camera,

UPDATE June 2016
After having had the camera for almost 2 years I have to say I was delighted with it, maybe not with the AV mode, it's not as good as I expected it to be, but a part from that it's all great.

Just mine decided to fall down a chair and the repair work costs almost as much as I payed for the camera, so I am a bit disapointed on the body, as it really was a small and slow crash. So I think maybe my unit has had another crash before (in Japan) or maybe the body is a bit weak.
Site Supporter

Registered: February, 2012
Location: Houston
Posts: 129

1 user found this helpful
Review Date: March 21, 2015 I can recommend the Pentax K-5: Yes | Price: $1,100.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Image quality, ease of use, User modes
Cons: Button layout could have been better, more
Years Owned: 3    Ergonomics: 9    Build Quality: 10    User Interface: 8    Autofocus: 8    Features: 9    Value: 9    Image Quality: 10    Noise: 9    New or Used: New   

The best image quality on ASPC in my eyes. The weight and the way this camera feels in your hand is just perfect. The user modes is simply genius as it allows me to program my settings for landscape, portrait, action, tripod for quick access.

I believe the button layout could have been better. I don't like where the AF button is and the RAW button could have had a few more options.

I would give 9.5 but alas not allowed here.
Forum Member

Registered: May, 2013
Posts: 59
Review Date: February 10, 2015 I can recommend the Pentax K-5: Yes | Price: $695.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: image quality, low noise
Cons: buttons layout
Years Owned: 1    Ergonomics: 7    Build Quality: 9    User Interface: 7    Autofocus: 8    Features: 8    Value: 9    Image Quality: 9    Noise: 9    New or Used: New   

I am a stock photographer and need images to be very sharp at 100% and very technically sound, ie, low noise, good saturation and color rendition. I liked the K-7 but still the images were soft and could use improvement. The K-5iis was what I needed. I regret not having purchased it sooner, but I have a somewhat limited budget and I had to wait until the price on it dropped. It is a BIG improvement over the K-7 in many aspects, image quality being the most obvious. The only drawback going to this camera is the placement of the some of the buttons makes it easy to accidentally change other settings.
New Member

Registered: December, 2014
Posts: 2
Review Date: January 4, 2015 I can recommend the Pentax K-5: Yes | Price: $390.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: chip sensitivity, image quality, built quality, small size, features, viewfinder
Cons: position of green button, position of LV button, no button control for stabilization on/off
Years Owned: 0,3    Ergonomics: 8    Build Quality: 10    User Interface: 9    Autofocus: 9    Features: 9    Value: 9    Image Quality: 10    Noise: 10    New or Used: Used   

Excellent camera, i was waiting for any DSLR to work like K-5 for many years. SO finally I have got one, Yay! Feel so elated to have K-5, while i was also thinking about getting a K-7 (was 130 dollars cheaper). But anyone thinking between those two cameras, there is only one choice - K-5 - because of so little noise, there is almost none! If you shoot into RAW you can clear out all of it. From my old K-200 this is a huge leap forward.

Registered: November, 2012
Location: Newark, Delaware
Posts: 737
Review Date: December 27, 2014 I can recommend the Pentax K-5: Yes | Price: $900.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Image Quality, features, build quality long battery life
Cons: screen on monitor easily scratched, live view autofocus.
Years Owned: 2.5    Ergonomics: 10    Build Quality: 9    User Interface: 10    Autofocus: 8    Features: 10    Value: 9    Image Quality: 10    Noise: 10    New or Used: New   

Had I rated this camera a year ago, I likely would have given it a 10. Now I also have a K3 and the K3 has improved on the K5 in areas where the K5 could use improvement. In particular, Live View autofocus and a much better glass (instead of plastic) monitor screen. Otherwise the K5 is still a great camera, compact, well built, and reliable.
New Member

Registered: September, 2010
Posts: 1
Review Date: December 10, 2014 I can recommend the Pentax K-5: Yes | Price: $500.00 | Rating: 10 

Years Owned: 1    Ergonomics: 10    Build Quality: 10    User Interface: 9    Autofocus: 9    Features: 9    Value: 9    Image Quality: 10    Noise: 9    New or Used: Used   

So happy I got this camera! I couldnt afford the newest model but got a used one in great condition and its the best purchase i could have made. Love it!
Loyal Site Supporter

Registered: July, 2010
Location: New York
Posts: 1,022
Review Date: December 7, 2014 I can recommend the Pentax K-5: Yes | Price: $999.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Excellent image quality. Solid build. Intuitive control layout. Strong overall feature set.
Cons: Autofocus needs work.
Years Owned: 2-1/2    Ergonomics: 10    Build Quality: 10    User Interface: 10    Autofocus: 7    Features: 9    Value: 9    Image Quality: 9    Noise: 9    New or Used: New   

I've had my Pentax K-5 for more than 2-1/2 years. Having put more than 25,000 shots on it, I can say that my experience with the K-5 has been very positive overall.
  • As is expected for a high-end Pentax DSLR, build is outstanding. I've taken pictures in heavy rain and snow and have never had a problem with my K-5.
  • The essential photographic controls are all within easy reach. I've never had trouble operating the camera or accessing any of the major settings.
  • Image quality is excellent. While the 16 megapixel sensor is starting to show its age, its ability to produce quality images in a variety of conditions is very good and the colors have always been pleasing.
  • The one thing that needs work is the autofocus system. AF.S speed is reasonable in the vast majority of lighting conditions, but AF.C performance is marginal at best. The K-3 is better in this regard, but it's still hamstrung by suboptimal AF algorithms that can't track fast-moving subjects reliably.
AF.C issues aside, this is a great overall camera.

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Registered: January, 2008
Location: ON
Posts: 38
Review Date: December 2, 2014 I can recommend the Pentax K-5: Yes | Price: $1,200.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Image quality, features, in body shake reduction for video
Cons: LCD scratches easily, green button placement
Years Owned: 4    Ergonomics: 8    Build Quality: 8    User Interface: 9    Autofocus: 8    Features: 8    Value: 10    Image Quality: 10    Noise: 10    New or Used: New   

I have really come to love this camera (I updated from a K100D and it took a while to learn all the new features).

I had a Katz-Eye screen installed to improve manual focusing and I find the camera works nicely with old glass; however, I find the location of the green button annoying for stop-down metering. It would be great if you could assign that function to the shutter button area.

Also, a button on my jacket scratched the LCD screen on the back soon after I bought it. I was a little surprised as my much cheaper mp3 players and cell phones all have Gorilla glass and have taken far more abuse than the K5 ever has and their screens are still in good condition. I would definitely recommend a screen protector if you are picky about scratches.

Registered: November, 2011
Posts: 3,821
Review Date: November 30, 2014 I can recommend the Pentax K-5: Yes | Price: $990.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Dynamic range, high ISO performance, solid body, battery life, clear viewfinder
Cons: Fiddly and fragile controls, weight, large AF areas
Years Owned: 3    Ergonomics: 7    Build Quality: 10    User Interface: 8    Autofocus: 5    Features: 8    Value: 8    Image Quality: 10    Noise: 10    New or Used: New   

I've been using my K5 for a couple of years now, after buying
it early in 2012. Coming from the K-x, I found it to be less
intuitive to operate. For example, working the three-position
AF/MF switch is hard while you're looking through the
viewfinder. I've since acquired its lighter stablemates, the
K-01 and K-50, which see more everyday use, but the K5 is the
go-to workhorse for situations where I'll be needing its
superior dynamic range and high ISO performance. It balances
well with my heavy Zeiss ZK lenses, and since they're manual
focus, the less than optimal AF of the K5 doesn't become a
concern. The viewfinder of the K5 is as good as it gets in
APS-C, and almost makes up for the lack of focus peaking.
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