Pentax K-x review: Impressive features meet portability in Pentax's latest DSLR
Design and Value for Money
Pentax K-x review – Design
Pentax describes the K-x as a compact and lightweight camera with user-friendly operation – and this much is certainly true. Being based on the previous K-m model, both are almost equal in size and weight, which is perhaps why it gives the impression of high functionality. The body is constructed from a stainless steel chassis and plastic covering and the grip is lined with rubber, but sadly there’s no rubberised thumb rest on the rear, which is immediately noticeable when picking up the camera for the first time. There is, however, plenty of thumb space on the back of the camera, and all controls are clearly labelled.
The menu system closely follows those of previous Pentax cameras, which means it is functional rather than attractive. While the company has been accused of using slightly obscure abbreviations in its previous models, the majority of options are clearly spelled out on the K-x and easy to understand. Even the Custom Functions menu, which comprises 22 options for noise reduction, focusing and exposure among others, has each function explained by a clear sentence. This is matched by a friendly ‘info’ screen, which rounds up 15 current functions and allows you to quickly access and change them as required.
The camera handles perfectly well, though the menu pad buttons are a little small and lack much travel. Also, while I’ve no reason to believe that the camera would fall apart in the hands of anyone who knew what they were doing, the slight creaking of the body when subjected to a firm grip suggests its build quality isn’t quite up to the standard of similar models, such as the Nikon D5000. This is a minor point, but perhaps one to bear in mind if you anticipate it facing a few knocks and scrapes.
Pentax K-x review – Value for Money
Considering that the K-x impresses with both its hardware and firmware, the current street price of £600 with its kit lens seems reasonable. Those using video, or even live view, may prefer the vari-angle LCD of Nikon’s D5000, or the higher-resolution LCD of Canon’s 500D; as these models have already been on the market for a while, they are also both a little cheaper than the K-x.
The Portrait mode is sympathetic to skin tones, with accurate tone. 1/100sec @ f/2.8, Pentax smc 100mm Macro f/2.8, ISO 400, Evaluative metering, AWB