We chose two rival cameras to the Pentax K-3 II to see how it measured up in our lab tests: the Canon EOS 760D and the Nikon D7200. We also ran our tests with the K-3 II's Pixel Shift mode in operation to see what impact this had on the results.
We've carried out lab tests on the Pentax K-3 II across its full ISO range for resolution, noise (including signal to noise ratio) and dynamic range. We test the JPEGs shot by the camera, but we also check the performance with raw files. Most enthusiasts and pros prefer to shoot raw, and the results can often be quite different.
We test camera resolution using an industry-standard ISO test chart that allows precise visual comparisons. This gives us numerical values for resolution in line widths/picture height, and you can see how the Pentax K-3 II compares with its rivals in the charts below.
JPEG resolution analysis: The K-3 II's JPEG resolution lies somewhere between the Canon 760D and the Nikon D7200, but in Pixel Shift Resolution mode it got much closer to the Nikon's figures. Bear in mind, though, that this mode is primarily to improve the colour information, so any increase in definition is a bonus.
Raw (converted to TIFF) resolution analysis: When shooting raw files the Pentax K-3 II can largely match the Nikon D7200's resolution, and Pixel Shift Resolution mode again delivers a slight resolution boost. Good as it is, the Canon 760D's resolution doesn't quite keep up, especially at mid-to-high ISO settings.