• 35mm 855.6mm2
  • 18.0 megapixels
  • ISO 160 - 2500
  • APS-C 369.7mm2
  • 16.3 megapixels
  • ISO 100 - 12,800

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Differences

Leica M9 advantages over Pentax K-5 II

  • Larger sensor
    35mm vs APS-C
    More sensor area. Bigger is (generally) better.
  • Bigger pixels
    ~ 6.87 vs 4.81 microns
    Better low-light and dynamic range (all else equal)
  • Thinner
    37 mm vs 73 mm
    Thinner
  • More viewfinder magnification
    0.68x vs 0.61x
    Get a bigger view of the scene through the eye-level viewfinder
  • Lacks anti-aliasing filter
    No Filter vs Filter
    Enjoy sharper photos

Pentax K-5 II advantages over Leica M9

  • Lens selection
    Excellent vs Limited
    Better lens selection gives you more options
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
    Yes vs No
    Reduces the effects of camera shake at slower shutter speeds
  • Fast startup
    ~0.60 vs 0.8 sec
    Faster startup lets you catch the moment
  • Higher effective ISO
    1,235 vs 884 iso
    Take photos in low light with less noise
  • More dynamic range
    14.1 vs 11.7 evs
    Retain detail in highlight and shadows
  • Longer stills battery life
    More info 740 vs 350 shots
    Capture more photos
  • Internal flash
    Internal flash vs None
    Useful in a pinch for fill flash
  • Top deck display
    Yes vs No
    Check settings with a screen on top of the camera
  • External Mic Jack
    Jack vs No jack
    Improved sound fidelity when shooting video
  • Newer
    6 years vs 9 years old
    Newer cameras often support more advanced features
  • HDMI out
    HDMI out vs None
    Use an external screen to monitor or review video
  • More dots on screen
    921k vs 230k dots
    Can mean greater resolution or a brighter screen
  • Shoots 1080p video
    Yes vs No
    You'll want this if you shoot video
  • Has anti-aliasing filter
    Filter vs No Filter
    Reduces unsightly moiré in photos
  • Faster JPEG shooting
    6.7 fps vs 1.7 fps
    Faster JPEG shooting (burst mode)
  • Bigger JPEG buffer
    28 vs 7 shots
    Take more JPEG shots before waiting (burst mode)
  • Faster shutter
    1/8000 vs 1/4000 sec
    Shoot wide open in bright light
  • Higher extended ISO
    51200 vs 2500 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
  • Hot shoe
    Both provide
    Off-camera flashes open new possibilities
  • Bulb shutter
    Both provide
    Hold the shutter open manually for long exposures

Common Weaknesses

  • Focus peaking
    Neither provide
    Your camera will highlight what's in focus
  • Tilt-swivel screen
    Neither provide
    Tilt and swivel the screen for maximum shooting flexibility
  • Touchscreen
    Neither provide
    Interact with your camera just like your smartphone
  • In-camera panoramas
    Neither provide
    Stitches multiple shots into a panoramic photo
  • Tiltable Screen
    Neither provide
    Tilt the screen for shooting flexbility
  • Built-in Wi-Fi
    Neither provide
    Share your photos wirelessly
  • NFC
    Neither provide
    Simplifies pairing your camera with supported phones
  • Built-in Bluetooth
    Neither provide
    Always-on wireless connectivity
  • Built-in GPS
    Neither provide
    Geotag your photos
  • On-sensor phase detect
    Neither provide
    Usually improves live view and video AF performance
  • 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

Buy From

Your purchases support this site

Buy the Pentax K-5 II

Review Excerpt

  • Excellent image quality, with unique film-like "Leica look"; No-nonsense controls; Solid build; Good print quality.

  • Difficult to focus in low light; High default contrast and saturation; Manual focus only; Lack of low-pass filter can leave moire and other artifacts.

  • Compact yet control-rich body packs in the features; Updated autofocus system focuses in near-darkness; Fully weather-sealed; Sharp, detailed images with very good dynamic range; In-body image stabilization; Dual-axis level with horizon correction.

  • Can seem intimidating at first; Fewer autofocus points than competitors; Doesn't take advantage of high-speed UHS-I flash cards; Movie feature set is very dated and file sizes huge.

The Competition

Compared to Nikon D7000

Leica M9
Nikon D7000
  • $8000
  • 35mm
  • Larger sensor
  • Bigger pixels
  • $699
  • APS-C
  • Lens selection
  • Less expensive
Pentax K-5 II
Nikon D7000
  • $790
  • APS-C
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
  • More telephoto lens reach
  • $699
  • APS-C
  • Fast startup
  • Longer stills battery life

Compared to Leica M Monochrom

Leica M9
Leica M Monochrom
  • $8000
  • 35mm
  • $7950
  • 35mm
  • Newer
  • Faster JPEG shooting
Pentax K-5 II
Leica M Monochrom
  • $790
  • APS-C
  • Lens selection
  • Less expensive
  • $7950
  • 35mm
  • Larger sensor
  • Bigger pixels

Compared to Pentax K-30

Leica M9
Pentax K-30
  • $8000
  • 35mm
  • Larger sensor
  • Bigger pixels
  • $556
  • APS-C
  • Lens selection
  • Focus peaking
Pentax K-5 II
Pentax K-30
  • $790
  • APS-C
  • Fast startup
  • Longer stills battery life
  • $556
  • APS-C
  • Less expensive
  • Focus peaking

Compared to Leica M (Typ 240)

Leica M9
Leica M (Typ 240)
  • $8000
  • 35mm
  • $5995
  • 35mm
  • Focus peaking
  • Higher effective ISO
Pentax K-5 II
Leica M (Typ 240)
  • $790
  • APS-C
  • Lens selection
  • Less expensive
  • $5995
  • 35mm
  • Focus peaking
  • Larger sensor

Compared to Leica M-E (Typ 220)

Leica M9
Leica M-E (Typ 220)
  • $8000
  • 35mm
  • Higher effective ISO
  • $4995
  • 35mm
  • Focus peaking
  • Newer
Pentax K-5 II
Leica M-E (Typ 220)
  • $790
  • APS-C
  • Lens selection
  • Less expensive
  • $4995
  • 35mm
  • Focus peaking
  • Larger sensor
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