Hands on: Pentax K-01 review with video

First look at new designer camera

Pentax k 01

As this was a pre-production model of the camera, we weren't able to fully test out the image quality of the K-01, but initial impressions are favourable.

Fitted with a large APS-C sized sensor and with the ability to shoot up to ISO 25,800 should mean the camera performs well in low light, especially when coupled with the bright f/2.8 40mm kit lens.

Pentax is using a new Prime M processing engine for the K-01, which should mean that HD video recording is smooth and fast. A variety of different frame rates all the way up to 60fps are available.

Pentax k 01

During our time with the camera, we found that it was able to lock on to and focus on subjects reasonably quickly, but it was no match for the near instant autofocus systems that have recently been incorporated into the likes of the Olympus PEN E-P3, or the Panasonic GX1. This is something we will be very keen to re-test during our full review.

Pentax k 01

The camera comes with 19 different filters that can be used while shooting or added afterwards. These include options such as "toy camera" and "retro". We tested a couple of these out, and while they're not as impressive as some of those found on its rivals (most notably the Olympus PEN E-P3), it is fairly likely that these won't be overly used by large segments of the target audience. It is worth noting however that when shooting with a filter in place during our initial tests, the K-01 did take a couple of seconds to process the image once taken.