Pentax Q10 review

January 26, 2013

Overall Rating:


Pentax Q10

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Price as Reviewed:


It’s a tiny, 12.4-million-pixel compact system camera with a range of six lenses, but what advantage does this offer the enthusiast photographer? Read the Pentax Q10...

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Pentax Q10 review – Build and handling

Although the button arrangement remains much the same as its predecessor, the Q10 has undergone some slight cosmetic tweaking. The result is a camera that looks far more like a classic Pentax DSLR. This has been achieved by adding small features such as a sliver finish to the camera’s top-plate and an angular design above the lens mount and below the hotshoe to give the appearance of a prism housing.

Given the size of the camera, Pentax hasn’t scrimped on the level of control on the Q10. Including the shutter, a total of 12 buttons, as well as two dials and two switches, adorn the camera’s body. The plastic buttons are quite small, and certainly won’t be easy to use when wearing winter gloves. However, in general use it is easy enough to change shooting settings and to navigate the camera’s menu system.

Handling the camera while taking photos is quite comfortable, and the controls don’t feel too cramped. The hand grip on the front of the camera is rather pronounced, allowing for good purchase. Similarly, the design of the camera’s rear allows the thumb to rest happily.

When you see images of the Pentax Q10, it is difficult to really get a sense of scale. After all, it isn’t lacking any controls, and it does look like it could be a full-size compact system camera. It is only really when holding and using it, along with the equally small lenses, that one realises just how tiny it is.

The Q system is an interesting concept for the enthusiast photographer. I can’t think of many camera systems that would have allowed me to carry a camera and four lenses in the side pocket of a parka jacket. This is impressive when compared to an APS-C-format DSLR or CSC, but remember that the Q10 only has a compact camera-sized sensor. A travel zoom compact with a similar-sized sensor, such as the Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ30, offers a 24-480mm equivalent focal length in a body not that much different in size than the Q10, but without the need to carry any additional lenses.

  • Tested as: Entry-level CSC

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