Pentax K-01 Review

 
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Pentax K-01 Performance


Timing and Performance

Generally slow performance for a compact system camera, though good JPEG burst speed.

Startup/Shutdown

Power on
to first shot

~2.4 seconds

Time it takes to turn on and capture a shot.

Shutdown

~0.3 second

How long it takes camera to turn off before you can remove the memory card.

Buffer clearing time
3 seconds after 9 large/fine JPEGs*
Worst case buffer clearing time. -- This is the delay after a set of shots before you can remove the card.
1 second after 20 RAW files*
2 seconds after 20 RAW + LF JPEG files*
*Note: Buffer clearing times measured with a SanDisk Extreme Pro 45MB/sec UHS-I SDHC card. Slower cards will produce correspondingly slower clearing times. Slow cards may also limit length of bursts in continuous mode. ISO sensitivity and noise reduction settings can also affect cycle times and burst mode performance.

Startup was slow at 2.4 seconds, though shutdown was fast. With a 45MB/s UHS-I SDHC card, the Pentax K-01's buffer clearing times were quite fast.


Mode Switching

Play to Record,
first shot

~1.3 seconds
Time until first shot is captured.

Record to Play

~2.3 seconds
Time to display a large/fine JPEG file immediately after capture.

Display
recorded image

~0.2 second
Time to display a large/fine JPEG file already on the memory card.

Play to Record mode switching was a bit slow, while Record to Play mode was quite slow, though displaying a captured image was fast.


Shutter Response (Lag Time)
Full Autofocus,
Single-area AF mode
0.803 second
Time from fully pressing shutter button to image capture, with the lens already at the proper focal distance setting. (All AF timing performed with Pentax 40mm f/2.8 XS kit lens unless otherwise noted.)
Full Autofocus,
Single-area AF mode
0.967 second
Time from fully pressing shutter button to image capture, with the lens already at the proper focal distance setting. (Tested with Pentax 17-70mm f/4 SDM lens at medium focal length.)
Full Autofocus,
Multi-area AF mode
0.768 second
Time from fully pressing shutter button to image capture, with the lens already at the proper focal distance setting.
Full Autofocus,
Single-area AF mode
Auto Flash Enabled
0.853 second
Time from fully pressing shutter button to image capture, with the lens already at the proper focal distance setting, TTL Auto flash enabled.
Continuous AF
N/A
This mode usually shows no speed increase with our static subject; we have no way to measure performance with moving subjects.
Manual Focus
0.105 second
For most cameras, shutter lag is less in manual focus than autofocus, but usually not as fast as when the camera is "prefocused".

Prefocused

0.120 second
Time to capture, after half-pressing and holding shutter button.

Not surprisingly, the Pentax K-01's full autofocus lag times were quite slow for a current compact system camera, at about 0.8 second with the 40mm kit lens. That's also slower than the vast majority of point & shoot cameras these days. Manual focus shutter lag was good though, at only 0.105 second. Oddly, prefocused shutter lag was slower than manual focus, at 0.120 second.

We thought perhaps a Pentax 17-70mm f/4 SDM (Supersonic Drive Motor) lens would focus faster, but found it was even slower on average than the 40mm kit lens. Full AF lag with the SDM lens averaged almost one second, and it varied a lot, between 0.57 and 1.74 seconds. (AF lag with the kit lens was very consistent, varying only 3% over multiple trials.)

To minimize the effect of different lens' focusing speed, we test AF-active shutter lag with the lens already set to the correct focal distance.


Cycle Time (shot to shot)

Single Shot mode
Large/Fine JPEG

1.91 seconds

Time per shot, averaged over 20 shots, 1 second to clear*.

Single Shot mode
RAW

2.24 seconds

Time per shot, averaged over 20 shots, 1.5 seconds to clear*.

Single Shot mode
RAW + LF JPEG
2.34 seconds

Time per shot, averaged over 20 shots, 1.5 seconds to clear*.

Early shutter
penalty?

Yes

Some cameras don't snap another shot if you release and press the shutter too quickly in Single Shot mode, making "No" the preferred answer.

Continuous High Mode
Large/Fine JPEG

0.17 second (5.93 frames per second);
9 frames total;
3 seconds to clear*

Time per shot, averaged over 9 shots, then slows to an average of about 0.25s or 3.96 fps when buffer is full, with about 32% variation.

Continuous Mode
RAW

0.98 second (1.02 frames per second);
20+ frames total;
1 second to clear*

Time per shot, averaged over 20 frames with no signs of slowing.

Continuous Mode
RAW + LF JPEG

0.98 second (1.02 frames per second);
20+ frames total;
2 seconds to clear*

Time per shot, averaged over 20 frames with no signs of slowing.

Flash Recycling

4.0 seconds

Flash at maximum output.

*Note: Buffer clearing times measured with a SanDisk Extreme Pro 45MB/sec UHS-I SDHC card. Slower cards will produce correspondingly slower clearing times. Slow cards may also limit length of bursts in continuous mode. ISO sensitivity and noise reduction settings can also affect cycle times and burst mode performance.

Single-shot cycle times were very sluggish, ranging from 1.91 seconds for large/fine JPEGs to 2.34 seconds for RAW + large/fine JPEG frames. Continuous High mode was however pretty good at 5.93 frames per second, though it's only available when shooting JPEGs. When RAW files were captured, continuous mode speed was only about one frame per second. Buffer depth was mediocre in Continuous High mode, at 9 large/fine JPEGs, though our test target was designed to be difficult to compress, so JPEG burst lengths should be longer with typical subjects. The Pentax K-01 does manage about 4 fps with the buffer full, though, which is not bad. Buffer depths when shooting with RAW files were quite good at over 20 frames, but keep in mind the slow 1 fps burst speed. Flash recycle time was about average, at 4 seconds after a full power discharge.


Download Speed

Windows Computer, USB 2.0

5,596 KBytes/sec

Typical Values:
Less than 600=USB 1.1;
600-769=USB 2.0 Low;
Above 770=USB 2.0 High

Downloads speeds via USB 2.0 were slower than average these days. (Tested with a SanDisk Extreme Pro 45MB/sec UHS-I SDHC card.)


Bottom line, the Pentax K-01's performance is generally pretty slow when compared to most other cameras including CSCs and digicams, though Continuous High burst speed is good. Unfortunately, only JPEGs are supported in that mode.

Battery

Battery Life
Very good battery life for a CSC.

Operating Mode Number of Shots
Still Capture,
(CIPA standard)
500

The Pentax K-01 uses a custom rechargeable lithium-ion battery pack for power, and comes with both a single battery and charger. The rated 500 shots per charge is well above average for a compact system camera. Still, we recommend getting a second battery for extended outings or shooting a lot of video.

The table above shows the number of shots the camera is capable of (on a fully-charged rechargeable battery), based on CIPA battery-life and/or manufacturer standard test conditions.

(Interested readers can find an English translation of the CIPA DC-002 standards document here. (180K PDF document))

 

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Note: For details, test results, and analysis of the many tests done with this camera, please click on the tabs at the beginning of the review or below.

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