While often overlooked, Pentax is still out here plugging away, making impressive cameras and quietly out-innovating Canikon. Pentax introduced their first full-frame DSLR, the K-1, in 2016. The K-1 offered 5-axis in-body image stabilization and enhanced resolution via Pixel Shift technology, the latter only usable when mounted on a tripod.
Now, the K-1 Mark II has been announced and will offer modest, though useful performance boosts, mainly via a newly added ‘accelerator unit,’ which makes improvements on the camera’s signal-to-noise handling. Notably, the K1-Mark II gets a two-stop bump in native ISO capability, increasing to 819,200 from the K-1’s 204,800, and technology advances have allowed the new camera’s Pixel Shift feature to be used while hand-holding.
What’s interesting about this update is that it can be installed into pre-existing K-1 bodies. For $550 USD or $690 CAD, K-1 owners who ship their cameras into a Ricoh service center between May 21st and September 30th will receive an upgrade via hardware modification to turn their camera into the new Mark II version.
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K-1 MARK II SPECS
- 36.4MP Full-Frame CMOS Sensor
- PRIME IV Image Processor
- 3.2″ Cross-Tilt LCD Monitor
- Full HD 1080p30 Video Recording
- SAFOX 12 33-Point AF Sensor
- Native ISO 819200; 4.4 fps Shooting
- Pixel Shift Resolution II
- 5-Axis In-Body Shake Reduction
- Built-In Wi-Fi & GPS; Dual SD Card Slots
- Weather-Sealed Magnesium-Alloy Body
While not exactly an action shooter’s body its 4.4 FPS burst, the K-1 Mark II and its predecessor are pretty cool cameras, offering up features that aren’t found in other DSLR bodies. Pixel Shift Resolution does make a noticeable difference in detail captured, as seen in the 100% crops below.
While not suitable for moving subjects, landscape and still-life
photographers who make large prints will find value in this feature.
The Pentax K-1 Mark II will ship in April 2018 and can be pre-ordered via B&H now for $1,996.95