Pentax has unveiled a 14.6-million-pixel digital SLR ? with Live View and ?HD? video options ? which it hopes will take on industry big guns such as Canon and Nikon.
The Pentax K-7 is claimed to be smaller than the Pentax K10D and K20D, yet with the same dust-proof and weather-resistant qualities.
Its new 15.1MP APS-C-size CMOS imaging sensor (14.6MP effective resolution) is designed to produce less noise than existing Pentax cameras.
The K7 is housed in a ?dust-proof and weather-resistant? magnesium-alloy body that includes ?77 seals?, and is claimed to work in temperatures as low as -10°C.
New features include a function that allows the user to make adjustments to picture composition without moving the camera, but by shifting the imaging sensor.
Improvements over the K20D ? which will continue in the range ? include a five frames per second burst rate (3fps on the K20D).
The newcomer also boasts a top shutter speed of 1/8000sec, twice that of the K20D, and a 3in LCD screen that carries a resolution of 921,000 dots (the 2.7in screen on the 14.6MP K20D has a 230,000-dot resolution).
A ?higher speed? image-processing engine called Prime II has also been installed.
Meanwhile, the 11-point SAFOX VIII AF+ system ? which includes nine cross-type sensors ? is said to be faster than the AF on the K20D and K-m models.
We understand that the K-7?s equivalent ISO sensitivity is ISO 6400 ? one stop higher than the K20D.
Also on board is a 77-segment, multi-pattern metering and dynamic range expansion to compensate for under or overexposed areas on the image.
Pentax has also fitted a function allowing ?automatic horizon correction? ? plus four image cropping modes: 3:2, 4:3, 16:9 and 1:1.
The movie mode shoots up to a resolution of 1536×1024-pixels, at a frame rate of 30fps.
? See next week’s issue or AP – available to subscribers from this Saturday – for full details and analysis