• APS-C 372.1mm2
  • 16.3 megapixels
  • ISO 100 - 12,800
  • APS-C 332.3mm2
  • 18.0 megapixels
  • ISO 100 - 6400

Buy From

Differences

Pentax K-5 advantages over Canon T3i

  • Larger sensor
    APS-C vs APS-C
    More sensor area. Bigger is (generally) better.
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
    Yes vs No
    Reduces the effects of camera shake at slower shutter speeds
  • Fast startup
    ~0.60 vs 1.5 sec
    Faster startup lets you catch the moment
  • Higher effective ISO
    1,162 vs 793 iso
    Take photos in low light with less noise
  • More dynamic range
    14.1 vs 11.5 evs
    Retain detail in highlight and shadows
  • Longer stills battery life
    More info 740 vs 440 shots
    Capture more photos
  • Top deck display
    Yes vs No
    Check settings with a screen on top of the camera
  • 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
  • Less shutter lag
    0.10 vs 0.28 sec
    Focus and take a photo quickly (wide angle)
  • More viewfinder magnification
    0.61x vs 0.53x
    Get a bigger view of the scene through the eye-level viewfinder
  • Faster JPEG shooting
    6.5 fps vs 3.6 fps
    Faster JPEG shooting (burst mode)
  • Bigger JPEG buffer
    31 vs 9 shots
    Take more JPEG shots before waiting (burst mode)
  • Faster RAW shooting
    6.5 fps vs 3.6 fps
    Faster RAW shooting in burst mode
  • Bigger RAW buffer
    23 vs 5 shots
    Larger buffer for RAW shots (burst mode)
  • Faster shutter
    1/8000 vs 1/4000 sec
    Shoot wide open in bright light
  • Higher extended ISO
    51200 vs 12800 ISO
    Higher extended ISO can give more low-light flexibility

Canon T3i advantages over Pentax K-5

  • Tilt-swivel screen
    Tilt-swivel vs none
    Tilt and swivel the screen for maximum shooting flexibility
  • More telephoto lens reach
    216 mm vs 83 mm
    Capture objects farther away with the kit lens
  • Shoots 24p video
    Yes vs No
    Gives your movies a big-screen feel
  • Shoots 60p video
    Yes vs No
    A faster framerate can give you more editing options

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 an external screen 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

  • Focus peaking
    Neither provide
    Your camera will highlight what's in focus
  • 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 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

Your purchases support this site

Review Excerpt

  • Excellent high ISO performance, one of the best APS-C sensors yet; 6.5 fps burst mode has very good buffer depths; Weather, dust, and cold resistant; In-body Shake Reduction corrects not only horizontal / vertical, but also rotational motion.

  • Default saturation and contrast a bit high; Auto white balance too warm in tungsten light; Fewer AF points than main competitors; Only a single card slot, and no UHS-I card support (slow buffer clearing).

  • Excellent image quality; Good grip; Full HD video recording; Swiveling LCD; Very fast autofocus; HDMI output.

  • Slow frame rate for sports shooting; Tendency to overexpose in bright sunlight; Live View AF is slow; No microfocus adjustment.

The Competition

Compared to Sony DSLR-A550

Pentax K-5
Sony DSLR-A550
  • $749
  • APS-C
  • Lens selection
  • Higher effective ISO
  • $859
  • APS-C
  • Tiltable Screen
  • Longer stills battery life
Canon T3i
Sony DSLR-A550
  • $549
  • APS-C
  • Lens selection
  • Less expensive
  • $859
  • APS-C
  • Larger sensor
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization

Compared to Nikon D7000

Pentax K-5
Nikon D7000
  • $749
  • APS-C
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
  • Less shutter lag
  • $699
  • APS-C
  • Fast startup
  • Longer stills battery life
Canon T3i
Nikon D7000
  • $549
  • APS-C
  • Less expensive
  • Tilt-swivel screen
  • $699
  • APS-C
  • Larger sensor
  • Fast startup

Compared to Nikon D5100

Pentax K-5
Nikon D5100
  • $749
  • APS-C
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
  • Top deck display
  • $499
  • APS-C
  • Less expensive
  • Tilt-swivel screen
Canon T3i
Nikon D5100
  • $549
  • APS-C
  • More telephoto lens reach
  • Shoots 60p video
  • $499
  • APS-C
  • Larger sensor
  • Fast startup

Compared to Pentax K-30

Pentax K-5
Pentax K-30
  • $749
  • APS-C
  • Fast startup
  • Longer stills battery life
  • $556
  • APS-C
  • Less expensive
  • Focus peaking
Canon T3i
Pentax K-30
  • $549
  • APS-C
  • Tilt-swivel screen
  • External Mic Jack
  • $556
  • APS-C
  • Focus peaking
  • Larger sensor

Compared to Canon T4i

Pentax K-5
Canon T4i
  • $749
  • APS-C
  • Larger sensor
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
  • $593
  • APS-C
  • Less expensive
  • Tilt-swivel screen
Canon T3i
Canon T4i
  • $549
  • APS-C
  • $593
  • APS-C
  • Touchscreen
  • Fast startup
Compare Other Cameras?