• APS-C 369.7mm2
  • 16.3 megapixels
  • ISO 100 - 12,800
  • APS-C 366.6mm2
  • 20.1 megapixels
  • ISO 100 - 51,200

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Differences

Pentax K-30 advantages over Pentax K-S2

  • More telephoto lens reach
    203 mm vs 75 mm
    Capture objects farther away with the kit lens
  • Higher-res screen
    307k vs 230k pixels
    More detail on the screen lets you judge focus and composition
  • Bigger JPEG buffer
    45 vs 28 shots
    Take more JPEG shots before waiting (burst mode)

Pentax K-S2 advantages over Pentax K-30

  • Less expensive
    $499 vs $599*
    Save money for lenses or accessories
  • Tilt-swivel screen
    Tilt-swivel vs none
    Tilt and swivel the screen for maximum shooting flexibility
  • Built-in Wi-Fi
    Wi-Fi vs None
    Share your photos wirelessly
  • NFC
    Yes vs No
    Simplifies pairing your camera with supported phones
  • External Mic Jack
    Jack vs No jack
    Improved sound fidelity when shooting video
  • Newer
    5 years vs 7 years old
    Newer cameras often support more advanced features
  • HDMI out
    HDMI out vs None
    Use HDMI output to monitor or review video
  • More pixels
    20.1 vs 16.3 megapixels
    Higher resolution photos
  • Optional anti-aliasing filter
    Optional vs Fixed
    Lets you choose sharper photos or reduced moiré
  • Higher extended ISO
    51200 vs 25600 ISO
    Higher extended ISO can give more low-light flexibility

Similarities

Common Strengths

  • Focus peaking
    Both provide
    Your camera will highlight what's in focus
  • Eye-level viewfinder
    Both provide
    You'll be able to frame photos even when the sun is out
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
    Both provide
    Reduces the effects of camera shake at slower shutter speeds
  • Internal flash
    Both provide
    Useful in a pinch for fill flash
  • Pentaprism viewfinder
    Both provide
    Much better viewfinder picture fidelity
  • Hot shoe
    Both provide
    Off-camera flashes open new possibilities
  • Bulb shutter
    Both provide
    Hold the shutter open manually for long exposures

Common Weaknesses

  • Touchscreen
    Neither provide
    Interact with your camera just like your smartphone
  • 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
  • On-sensor phase detect
    Neither provide
    Usually improves live view and video AF performance
  • 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 Pentax K-S2

Review Excerpt

  • Pentaprism viewfinder is bright and accurate; Weather-sealed body can handle direct rain; Twin control dials make exposure control a snap; Solid build; Great image quality.

  • Lower resolution than some rivals; Not as small as recent Pentax entry-level and mid-range models; A couple of ergonomic and UI quirks; Shutter isn't the quietest; 18-55 kit lens isn't weather-sealed.

  • 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 Nikon D7000

Pentax K-30
Nikon D7000
  • $599
  • APS-C
  • Focus peaking
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
  • $699
  • APS-C
  • Fast startup
  • Longer stills battery life
Pentax K-S2
Nikon D7000
  • $499
  • APS-C
  • Focus peaking
  • Tilt-swivel screen
  • $699
  • APS-C
  • Fast startup
  • Longer stills battery life

Compared to Canon T4i

Pentax K-30
Canon T4i
  • $599
  • APS-C
  • Less expensive
  • Focus peaking
  • $699
  • APS-C
  • Tilt-swivel screen
  • Touchscreen
Pentax K-S2
Canon T4i
  • $499
  • APS-C
  • Focus peaking
  • Larger sensor
  • $699
  • APS-C
  • Touchscreen
  • Fast startup

Compared to Pentax K-5 II

Pentax K-30
Pentax K-5 II
  • $599
  • APS-C
  • Less expensive
  • Focus peaking
  • $750
  • APS-C
  • Fast startup
  • Longer stills battery life
Pentax K-S2
Pentax K-5 II
  • $499
  • APS-C
  • Less expensive
  • Tilt-swivel screen
  • $750
  • APS-C
  • Fast startup
  • Longer stills battery life

Compared to Pentax K-S1

Pentax K-30
Pentax K-S1
  • $599
  • APS-C
  • More telephoto lens reach
  • Bigger JPEG buffer
  • $500
  • APS-C
  • Less expensive
  • Newer
Pentax K-S2
Pentax K-S1
  • $499
  • APS-C
  • Tilt-swivel screen
  • Built-in Wi-Fi
  • $500
  • APS-C
  • Higher-res screen

Compared to Nikon D5500

Pentax K-30
Nikon D5500
  • $599
  • APS-C
  • Focus peaking
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
  • $461
  • APS-C
  • Less expensive
  • Tilt-swivel screen
Pentax K-S2
Nikon D5500
  • $499
  • APS-C
  • Focus peaking
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
  • $461
  • APS-C
  • Less expensive
  • Touchscreen
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