Pentax K-70 First Shots: Ricoh’s affordable yet feature-packed consumer DSLR lands in our lab!


posted Tuesday, August 9, 2016 at 7:59 AM EDT


For the folks at Ricoh, the new Pentax K-70 DSLR is an important camera. For one thing, it's the company's first ever DSLR to include phase-detection autofocus pixels on the image sensor, something that should make autofocus more responsive both in live view mode and when shooting movies. It's also the first Pentax camera with support for KAF4 lenses -- which feature electronic aperture control -- right out of the box without a firmware update. (In fact, only a handful of past models can even be updated to provide KAF4 support, thus far.)

Of course, you'll need a KAF4 lens -- of which there is only one model as of this writing -- to try out the electronic aperture control, and so will we. Our review sample of the HD PENTAX-DA 55-300mm F4.5-6.3ED PLM WR RE lens will be arriving shortly, but in the meantime while we await the ability to properly test out these new movie-friendly features, we've already sent the K-70 body through our lab to get a feel for its still image quality.

Want to see how the Pentax K-70 performed, and what you can expect in terms of detail, noise levels and more, across the sensitivity range? You'll want to take a look at our just-published lab samples, including a full sensitivity series both with default noise reduction (that's the files with NRAD in their names) and at the lowest noise reduction level (shots with NR0 in their names). For good measure, we've also included base-sensitivity shots using the Natural color reproduction (NAT in the file names) as well as the default Bright colors, and shots with the Pixel Shift Resolution mode enabled too (PSR in the file names).

To get you started, below we've included a few quick side-by-side comparisons at base sensitivity and ISO 3200-equivalent against some of the Pentax K-70's siblings and nearest rivals below. Of course, if you're interested in a specific matchup against another camera, you can make your own comparisons against any model of your choosing from the many that we've reviewed over the years by using our ever-popular Comparometer. And now, with no further ado, let's get to a few quick comparisons!

Pentax K-70 vs. Pentax K-3 II

Pentax K-70                          ISO 100                          Pentax K-3 II

Pentax K-70                          ISO 3200                          Pentax K-3 II

Pentax K-70 vs. Pentax K-S2

Pentax K-70                          ISO 100                          Pentax K-S2

Pentax K-70                          ISO 3200                          Pentax K-S2

Pentax K-70 vs. Canon T6i

Pentax K-70                          ISO 100                          Canon T6i

Pentax K-70                          ISO 3200                          Canon T6i

Pentax K-70 vs. Nikon D5500

Pentax K-70                          ISO 100                          Nikon D5500

Pentax K-70                          ISO 3200                          Nikon D5500

Like what you see from our K-70 First Shots? Stay tuned for more coverage in our Pentax K-70 review in the coming weeks. It will be heading out of the lab and into the real world in the very near future!

Pentax K-70 ReviewTechnical Info • Sample Images