Pentax claims to have developed the world's smallest and lightest digital interchangeable lens camera system with the Pentax Q, which will be released in September 2011.
The Pentax Q "was designed and developed in response to user requests for a more compact, manoeuverable digital interchangeable-lens camera than those available in the existing Pentax line-up – a camera that could go anywhere and be used in all kinds of occasion more easily and freely," says Pentax.
The camera uses a 12.4-megapixel back-illuminated 1/2.3-inch CMOS image sensor. It has a burst rate of 5fps, a sensitivity rate of up to ISO6400, an in-body shake reduction mechanism and a dust-removal, anti-dust system. The Pentax Q can also shoot full-HD movies at a resolution of 1080p and a frame rate of 30fps.
Reduction in the size of the camera has been achieved by removing the optical finder, mirror box, focusing plate and AF sensor, says Pentax. The lens mount is also 6mm shorter than that of Pentax K mount.
Pentax also plans to release an optional optical viewfinder, as well as five lenses specifically designed for the Q system. While Pentax has yet to give official names to the lenses, it says that there will be a Standard Prime and a Standard Zoom lens, as well as a Fish-Eye, Toy Lens Wide and Toy Lens Telephoto - "the two Toy Lens models are designed to produce a distinctive toy-camera-like visual effect," says Pentax. See below for more details.
UK and international pricing has yet to be determined.
Pentax' description of the five new lenses that will be released alongside the first Q camera:
Major features of the "PENTAX-01 STANDARD PRIME"
This unifocal standard lens has a focal length equivalent to 47mm in the 35mm format. Since it offers a natural perspective similar to that of the human eye, it can be used as a multi-purpose, daily-use standard lens for many different subjects, including landscape and portraiture. With a maximum aperture of F1.9, it not only performs superbly in dim locations, but also makes it easy to throw the background out of focus. Incorporating two high grade aspherical optical elements, this lens compensates various aberrations to a minimum and produces beautiful, high resolution images that are bright and crisp even at the edge of the image field.
Major features of the "PENTAX-02 STANDARD ZOOM"
With a focal length coverage equivalent to that of a 27.5~83.0mm zoom lens in the 35mm format, this standard zoom lens is ideal for various applications in the wide angle to medium telephoto range. Incorporating a total of four extra-low-dispersion and low-refractive aspherical optical elements in its optics, it assures exceptional image rendition while effectively reducing chromatic aberration to a minimum over the entire zoom range. It also offers a minimum focusing distance of 30 centimetres at all focal lengths to simplify close-up photography.
Major features of the "PENTAX-03 FISH EYE"
This ultra-wide angle lens offers an extra wide angle of view of 160 degrees along the diagonal line of the image sensor, allowing the photographer to create a fish eye visual effect with great ease. Thanks to its distinctive ultra-wide angle characteristics, it produces unique, eye-catching images unlike those captured by the human eye, with an exaggerated perspective, distorted subjects, and a pan-focus effect that captures every element in the image field in sharp focus.
Major features of the "PENTAX-04 TOY LENS WIDE" and "PENTAX-05 TOY LENS TELEPHOTO"
With their optics designed specifically to retain various lens aberrations, these lenses produce subdued, heartwarming images like photos taken by a toy camera. The "PENTAX-04 TOY LENS WIDE" is a unifocal wide angle lens with a focal length equivalent to 35mm in the 35mm format; the "PENTAX-05 TOY LENS TELEPHOTO" is a unifocal medium telephoto lens with a focal length equivalent to 100mm in the 35 format.
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