• APS-C 332.3mm2
  • 18.0 megapixels
  • ISO 100 - 12,800
  • APS-C 366.6mm2
  • 20.1 megapixels
  • ISO 100 - 51,200

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Differences

Canon SL1 advantages over Pentax K-S2

  • Touchscreen
    Touch vs No touch
    Interact with your camera just like your smartphone
  • Fast startup
    ~0.60 vs 1.0 sec
    Faster startup lets you catch the moment
  • On-sensor phase detect
    Yes vs No
    Usually improves live view and video AF performance
  • More telephoto lens reach
    88 mm vs 75 mm
    Capture objects farther away with the kit lens
  • Lighter weight
    623g vs 859g
    Lighter weight
  • Higher-res screen
    346k vs 230k pixels
    More detail on the screen lets you judge focus and composition
  • Bigger JPEG buffer
    1140 vs 28 shots
    Take more JPEG shots before waiting (burst mode)

Pentax K-S2 advantages over Canon SL1

  • Focus peaking
    Peaker vs Non-peaker
    Your camera will highlight what's in focus
  • Larger sensor
    APS-C vs APS-C
    More sensor area. Bigger is (generally) better.
  • Less expensive
    $527* vs $699
    Save money for lenses or accessories
  • Tilt-swivel screen
    Tilt-swivel vs none
    Tilt and swivel the screen for maximum shooting flexibility
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
    Yes vs No
    Reduces the effects of camera shake at slower shutter speeds
  • Built-in Wi-Fi
    Wi-Fi vs None
    Share your photos wirelessly
  • NFC
    Yes vs No
    Simplifies pairing your camera with supported phones
  • More cross-type AF points
    9 vs 1
    Cross-type AF points improve autofocus performance
  • Pentaprism viewfinder
    Pentaprism vs Pentamirror
    Much better viewfinder picture fidelity
  • Newer
    4 years vs 6 years old
    Newer cameras often support more advanced features
  • Less shutter lag
    0.12 vs 0.26 sec
    Focus and take a photo quickly (wide angle)
  • More viewfinder magnification
    0.63x vs 0.54x
    Get a bigger view of the scene through the eye-level viewfinder
  • Optional anti-aliasing filter
    Optional vs Fixed
    Lets you choose sharper photos or reduced moiré
  • Faster JPEG shooting
    5.2 fps vs 3.9 fps
    Faster JPEG shooting (burst mode)
  • Faster RAW shooting
    5.2 fps vs 4.0 fps
    Faster RAW shooting in burst mode
  • Faster shutter
    1/6000 vs 1/4000 sec
    Shoot wide open in bright light
  • Higher extended ISO
    51200 vs 25600 ISO
    Higher extended ISO can give more low-light flexibility

Similarities

Common Strengths

  • Eye-level viewfinder
    Both provide
    You'll be able to frame photos even when the sun is out
  • Internal flash
    Both provide
    Useful in a pinch for fill flash
  • External Mic Jack
    Both provide
    Improved sound fidelity when shooting video
  • HDMI out
    Both provide
    Use HDMI output to monitor or review video
  • Hot shoe
    Both provide
    Off-camera flashes open new possibilities
  • Bulb shutter
    Both provide
    Hold the shutter open manually for long exposures

Common Weaknesses

  • In-camera panoramas
    Neither provide
    Stitches multiple shots into a panoramic photo
  • Built-in Bluetooth
    Neither provide
    Always-on wireless connectivity
  • Built-in GPS
    Neither provide
    Geotag your photos
  • Top deck display
    Neither provide
    Check settings with a screen on top of the camera
  • Dual card slots
    Neither provide
    Gives you more storage flexibility
  • Headphone jack
    Neither provide
    Monitor audio recording while you shoot video
  • Slow-motion videos
    Neither provide
    Shoot slow-motion videos

User reviews

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Your purchases support this site

Buy the Canon SL1

Your purchases support this site

Buy the Pentax K-S2

Review Excerpt

  • Extremely compact and lightweight for a DSLR; Delivers good image quality that's virtually identical to the Canon T4i/T5i; Accurate and relatively fast autofocus with improved Live View and Movie Hybrid CMOS II AF; Full 1080p HD movie recording; Better-than average kit lens (EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM).

  • Still not as compact as most mirrorless cameras; Slightly worse than average dynamic range and high ISO performance; Poor battery life.

  • Very compact for a weather-sealed DSLR; Good ergonomics and great viewfinder; Excellent image quality; Decent performance for its class; Articulated screen is great for difficult compositions; Offers features not found in other Pentax DSLRs

  • 18-50mm kit lens is fiddly and prone to jamming when retracted; Wi-Fi is slow and unintuitive; Slow startup; Limited movie mode; Poor battery life for a DSLR; Priced too close to its enthusiast-grade sibling

The Competition

Compared to Pentax K-5 IIs

Canon SL1
Pentax K-5 IIs
  • $390
  • APS-C
  • Less expensive
  • Touchscreen
  • $850
  • APS-C
  • Larger sensor
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
Pentax K-S2
Pentax K-5 IIs
  • $527
  • APS-C
  • Less expensive
  • Tilt-swivel screen
  • $850
  • APS-C
  • Fast startup
  • Longer stills battery life

Compared to Sony A58

Canon SL1
Sony A58
  • $390
  • APS-C
  • Lens selection
  • Touchscreen
  • $598
  • APS-C
  • Focus peaking
  • Larger sensor
Pentax K-S2
Sony A58
  • $527
  • APS-C
  • Tilt-swivel screen
  • Lens selection
  • $598
  • APS-C
  • In-camera panoramas
  • Longer stills battery life

Compared to Canon T5

Canon SL1
Canon T5
  • $390
  • APS-C
  • Touchscreen
  • Higher effective ISO
  • $399
  • APS-C
  • Longer stills battery life
Pentax K-S2
Canon T5
  • $527
  • APS-C
  • Focus peaking
  • Larger sensor
  • $399
  • APS-C
  • Fast startup
  • Longer stills battery life

Compared to Pentax K-S1

Canon SL1
Pentax K-S1
  • $390
  • APS-C
  • Touchscreen
  • On-sensor phase detect
  • $399
  • APS-C
  • Focus peaking
  • Larger sensor
Pentax K-S2
Pentax K-S1
  • $527
  • APS-C
  • Tilt-swivel screen
  • Built-in Wi-Fi
  • $399
  • APS-C
  • Higher-res screen

Compared to Nikon D5500

Canon SL1
Nikon D5500
  • $390
  • APS-C
  • On-sensor phase detect
  • Has anti-aliasing filter
  • $558
  • APS-C
  • Larger sensor
  • Tilt-swivel screen
Pentax K-S2
Nikon D5500
  • $527
  • APS-C
  • Focus peaking
  • Less expensive
  • $558
  • APS-C
  • Touchscreen
  • Fast startup
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