The Pentax Q may be the smallest interchangeable-lens camera, but there is more to this model than just its size and retro charm
No one can deny that the Pentax Q adds a little colour to the market. Its main talking points will always be its size, for reasons good and bad. The current ‘smallest interchangeable-lens camera’ uses a much smaller sensor, but this is central to its being – compact size and compact lenses (and the consequent distortion and lack of control over depth of field).
Given its build quality and price, the Pentax Q is aimed squarely at the enthusiast photographer, but such a user demands high image quality. In this regard, they will be more satisfied with cameras like the Sony NEX-C3.
Nonetheless, Pentax may well be the first to create a truly compact system, with the larger-sensor CSCs bogged down by bulky lenses. The opening salvo from a new system is always exciting and I look forward to seeing where it will go, especially in relation to a lens adapter and future Q-mount lenses. For now, though, the Pentax Q will afford its users a smile, some fun and a compact companion, if little else.
Pentax Q – Key points
Handily, the pop-up flash operates in either its closed or elevated position. Its GN 5.6 @ ISO 125 output is suitable for close-range subjects
Here the quick menu is accessed, through which several key shooting settings can be adjusted, such as colour mode, metering, Shake Reduction and aspect ratio
Of the several handy shooting modes, a multiple exposure of up to nine frames can be recorded, with the choice for auto EV adjustment.
A built-in ND filter offers an extra 2 stops of light, meaning using wide apertures in sunlight or a slower shutter speed for blurred movement is possible.
Among the 21 scene modes available, macro, sunset, blue sky, HDR, stage lighting and museum are available.
Interval shooting can be set for up to 999 images, at intervals between 1sec and 24hrs, as well as the start time of the sequence.
This direct control accesses exposure compensation, through which ±3EV adjustments can be made
The hotshoe port holds the optional optical viewfinder. As for a flashgun, there is no official model available yet for the Q, so the Pentax AF-200FG is the most complementary in size