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Pentax K-5 II with 18-55mm 3X Zoom Kit Lens

16-megapixel mid-size digital SLR camera with weather-resistant 3X zoom lens

Item # 815K5II55

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Our take on the Pentax K-5 II with 18-55mm 3X Zoom Kit Lens

Things move fast in the consumer electronics world, especially within the camera category. In spring 2012, we here at Crutchfield were taking a Pentax K-5 camera to a local water park to check out its amazing weather resistance and image quality. Then, a couple of months ago, we were sad to see it discontinued. But apparently, the sadness was premature, because Pentax has introduced the K-5 II. It's an updated version of the K-5, with better autofocus in low light, an improved, scratch-resistant LCD that's easier to see outdoors, and better compatibility with wide-aperture lenses. This camera's now an even bigger low-light threat than it was previously.

A great camera gets even better

Things move fast in the consumer electronics world, especially within the camera category. In spring 2012, we here at Crutchfield were taking a Pentax K-5 camera to a local water park to check out its amazing weather resistance and image quality. Then, a couple of months ago, we were sad to see it discontinued. But apparently, the sadness was premature, because Pentax has introduced the K-5 II. It's an updated version of the K-5, with better autofocus in low light, an improved, scratch-resistant LCD that's easier to see outdoors, and better compatibility with wide-aperture lenses. This camera's now an even bigger low-light threat than it was previously.

The Pentax K-5 II digital SLR

The Pentax K-5 II uses easy-to-find SD/SDHC/SDXC cards

An image-quality winner

Not very often does a camera come along that captures the attention of serious photographers like the Pentax K-5 II has. This is one piece of gear that has "workhorse" written all over it. Not that it's built heavy, like a tank — in fact, you'll find it pleasantly streamlined and solid without being unnecessary bulky. No, the overriding reason why enthusiasts have gravitated towards the K-5 is simple: The image quality on this camera will knock you out. We mean it. It will hold its own against the best in the field and leave more than a few wanting when measured up against the competition.

Great when the lights are low

Notably, the K-5 II has been called out for its performance when its sensitivity is dialed up. What this means in plain English is that it's exceptionally solid in low light situations, with accurate detail and color rendition while serving up a minimum of noise along the way. It's so good at revealing hidden detail that you may find yourself looking for lenses that will do it justice. Fortunately, this camera is compatible with a wealth of fine Pentax lenses made over the past four decades, so you won't lack for options.

This camera comes with Pentax's versatile, weather-resistant DA 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 AL kit lens. With a 3X zoom ratio and sophisticated optical elements that minimize color fringing and distortion, you'll be ready for everything from wide group photos to candid portraits. Plus, with its durability in the elements, it's an excellent match for the K-5 II's rugged body.

It'll move you too

Video hasn't been ignored either. The K-5 II can shoot richly detailed HD video, up to 1080/25p. Not only that, you can do some basic editing of that captured video right in the camera. That's a time-saver when you'd like to get a feel for how your scenes will cut together. And there's an external microphone input so you can capture better sound.

Truly go-anywhere

Back to the "workhorse" thing: this camera is truly a go-anywhere tool. With industry leading weather-seal construction, the K-5 II is more resistant to water, fog, snow, dust and sand than any other DSLR on the market at this time. It's a secure feeling to know your investment can take care of itself when you're shooting in challenging situations like riding on "The Maid of the Mist" at Niagara Falls, or getting great shots of your family's water-skiers on vacation.

Product Highlights:

  • 16.28-megapixel effective recording
  • includes weather-resistant Pentax DA 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 AL WR lens
    • 35mm equivalent of 27-84.5mm on APS-C sensors
  • SAFOX X 11-point (9 cross-type) autofocus system is fast, accurate, and rated to a very low-light -3EV
  • APS-C size HD CMOS image sensor (23.7 X 15.7 mm) for rich tonal gradation and true-to-life color
  • class-leading weather-seals give top performance in resisting rain, fog, snow, sand and dust
  • 3", wide-view, air-gap-free 921K-dot LCD minimizes reflections for better outdoor viewing
  • high-def, high-quality movie mode (up to 1080p @ 25 frames per second) with motion JPG compression (AVI wrapper)
  • magnesium/steel alloy construction
  • PRIME II image processor is optimized for fast performance
  • compatible with decades' worth of Pentax lenses
  • Sensor-shift Shake and Dust Reduction system stabilizes shots and keeps sensor clean
  • 7 frames-per-second continuous shooting
  • A choice of three grid patterns (including "Golden Section") assist your frame composition while in Live View mode
  • 17 types of creative digital filters, including "Toy Camera"
  • manual release pop-up flash gives you light support when you need it
  • in-camera HDR mode gives you outstanding detail in shadows and highlights by blending user-specified exposures
    • night scene HDR mode allows for enhanced definition in low light
  • hotshoe for external Pentax flash units
  • warranty: 1 year
  • Our 60-day money-back guarantee
Compatible Lenses:
  • compatible with many Pentax lenses: KAF2 bayonet mount, KA, KAF, KAF2 & 3, K-mount (some restrictions)
Exposure Modes and Controls:
  • continuous shooting mode: 7 frames per second
  • shutter speed range: 30-1/8,000 seconds, bulb
  • sensitivity or ISO (film speed equivalent) range: 100-12,800 (80-51,200 expandable)
  • program auto, shutter-priority, aperture-priority, sensitivity-priority, manual, and fully automatic exposure modes
  • flash bracketing: 3 or 5 frames
  • interval mode for time-lapse photography
  • 9 preset scene modes for accurately exposed images in many different shooting environments
  • flash sync at 1/180 second
File Formats and Storage:
  • image storage modes: RAW (PEF, DNG), JPG (EXIF 2.21), DCF 2.0 compliant, DPOF, PIM III
  • still image aspect ratio options: 3:2, 16:9, 1:1
  • Motion JPG .AVI movie files up to 1920 x 1080 at 25 frames per second
  • accepts optional SD, high capacity SDHC, MultiMediaCard, and SDXC memory cards
Connections and Dimensions:
  • high-speed USB 2.0 interface
  • external stereo mic input (3.5mm minijack)
  • mini HDMI output (cable not included)
  • 5-3/16"W x 3-7/8"H x 3"D (without lens)
  • weight (without battery or media): 31.6 oz.
Supplied Accessories:
  • rechargeable D-Li90 lithium ion battery
  • battery charger
  • shoulder strap
  • USB cable
  • A/V cable
  • viewfinder cap and body cap
  • hotshoe cover
  • eyecup
  • focusing screen frame matte
  • PC socket cap
  • software CD-ROM

What's in the Box:

  • Camera body (black) with attached body cap
  • SMC Pentax-DA 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 AL WR lens (with attached front and rear lens caps)
  • PH-RBC 52mm lens hood
  • D-LI90 Lithium-Ion rechargeable battery (7.2V/1860mAh/14Wh)
  • D-BC90 Battery charger (8.4V/400mA)
  • Adjustable neck strap
  • Viewfinder cap
  • Hot shoe cap (installed on camera body)
  • 5' I-AVC7 AV cable (with proprietary connector on one end and composite video and mono RCA audio plugs on the other end)
  • 5' I-USB7 USB cable (with Type A USB on one end and a proprietary connector on other end)
  • 6' AC power cable (non-polarized C7 connector)
  • Pentax Digital Camera Utility 4 CD-ROM
  • Camera Operating Manual
  • Lens Operating Manual
  • Notification of Change of Company Name sheet
  • Pentax Worldwide Service Network sheet
  • Camera Kit Serial Number Card
  • Lens Serial Number Card
  • UL Note (for battery charger)
  • Customer Service sheet (pink)

Hands-on research

Features and Specs

LCD Screen Size 3"
Adjustable-angle LCD No
Wi-Fi No
GPS-enabled Optional
Lens 35mm Equivalent 27.5-84.4mm
Optical Zoom 3x
Digital Zoom N/A
Filter Diameter 52mm
Manual Focusing Yes
Manual Exposure Yes
Built-in Flash Yes
HDMI Output Mini
Internal Memory None
Memory Media SD/SDHC/SDXC
Sensor Size 23.7 x 15.7 CMOS
Megapixels 16.28
Image Stabilization Sensor Shift
Highest Resolution 4928 x 3264
4K Video No
Video Resolution 1920 x 1080/25p
Width (inches) 5-3/16
Height (inches) 3-7/8
Depth (inches) 5-3/8
Weight With Battery (ounces) 34.4
Parts Warranty 1 Year
Labor Warranty 1 Year

Product Research

General Features
Playback and Editing Features
Battery Information
Supplied Software

General Features

Overview: The Pentax K-5 II is a D-SLR camera with a rugged magnesium alloy and stainless steel body. It is fully weather-sealed to resist water, fog, snow, sand, and dust, to give you outstanding performance in the elements, as well as the studio. The K-5 II comes with the SMC Pentax-DA 18-55mm F3.5-5.6 AL WR lens. It will accept other Pentax K-mount lenses to give you a variety of shooting options.

3.0" LCD Monitor: The camera features a large, bright 3.0" LCD monitor for viewing the camera settings, framing your shots with Live View, and playing back recorded still images and movies. The scratch-resistant LCD is designed without the air gap that is typically found between the LCD screen and screen cover. This gives you a brighter, sharper image. The monitor's 921,000-dot resolution gives you crystal clear images, and features approximately 100% field of view.

Viewfinder: In addition to the 3" LCD monitor, the K-5 II has an optical, pentaprism viewfinder with 100% field of view. A diopter adjustment lets you focus the viewfinder to your personal eyesight, if needed. Interchangeable focusing screens are available.

Electronic Level Display: When the camera is not level, a bar graph indicating the horizontal camera angle is displayed in the viewfinder and on the LCD panel. The level display can be turned on/off in the shooting menu.

Compatible Lenses: The K-5 II has a KAF2 bayonet mount with an AF coupler and lens information contacts (a K-mount with power contacts). Lenses with KAF3, KAF2 (power zoom not compatible), KAF, and KA mounts can be used. These lenses include DA, DA L, D FA, and FA J lenses.

Supplied Lens: This camera kit comes with the SMC Pentax-DA 18-55mm F3.5-5.6 AL WR lens. Its focal length is equivalent 27.5mm-84.4mm in the 35mm format. The minimum focus distance is 9.84 inches. The lens features the Pentax SP (Super Protect) coating to repel dust, water, and grease. It is also weather-resistant to handle damp, inclement weather conditions. The PH-RBC 52mm lens hood is included.

Image Sensor: The K-5 II is equipped with a large, 16-megapixel APS-C sized (23.7 mm x 15.7 mm) CMOS image sensor, which delivers high resolution image quality with accurate colors and low noise. It has 16.93 million total pixels and 16.28 million effective pixels. The sensor features the DR II Dust Removal function that shakes the sensor with ultrasonic vibrations every time the camera is turned on and off.

Shake Reduction (SR): The K-5 II is equipped with the Pentax Shake Reduction (SR) system, which uses a magnetic force to move the image sensor at high speeds, compensating for camera shake. The Shake Reduction function allows you to take pictures at up to approximately 4 steps slower shutter speed without risk of camera shake.

Recording Media: The camera can record still images and movies onto SD Memory Cards, SDHC Memory Cards, and SDXC Memory Cards.

Still Image Formats: The K-5 II can shoot JPEG still images in 4 sizes in 3:2 aspect ratio. You can set the image quality level (compression ratio) for each size to Premium, Best, Better, or Good. In addition, uncompressed RAW images can be recorded using the full output of the CMOS sensor. The RAW files are recorded in the DNG (Digital Negative) format. RAW images must be "developed" and converted into JPEG files using the RAW Development function in the camera or using the provided Pentax Digital Camera Utility 4 software. When the camera is set to RAW+JPEG, images in both JPEG and RAW formats are captured. Image sizes include:

  • 16M: 4928 x 3264 (JPEG and RAW)
  • 10M: 3936 x 2624
  • 6M: 3072 x 2048
  • 2M: 1728 x 1152

Movie Recording: High Definition movies can be recorded in the Motion JPEG (AVI) format with monaural audio. You can choose from Full HD (1920 x 1080) at 25 frames per second, or 1280 x 720 at 30 or 25 fps. Standard def movies can also be recorded at 640 x 480 pixels (4:3) at 30 or 25 fps. The Quality Level can be set to Better, Best, or Good.

SAFOX X Autofocus System: The K-5 II is equipped with a new, highly advanced and accurate 11-point SAFOX X autofocus system. It offers the widest EV focus range in its class, and is ideal for focusing in low light conditions, as low as -3EV.

Focus Modes: You can set the focus mode switch to AF-S (auto focus-single), AF-C (auto focus-continuous), or MF (manual focus). In Auto Focus mode, the camera automatically focuses on the subject when the shutter release button is pressed halfway (AF-Single) or continuously focuses (AF-Continuous). In Manual Focus mode, you can adjust the focus by turning the focus ring on the lens.

AF Assist Light: In Auto Focus mode, when the subject is in a dark location, the AF Assist Light automatically turns on when the shutter release button is pressed halfway. You can turn off the AF Assist light, if desired.

AF Point: You can choose the part of the viewfinder to set the focus to: Center, Select, or Auto. In Select mode, you can set the focus area to any of eleven points in the AF frame. In Auto mode, the camera selects the optimum AF point, even if the subject is not centered. You can select from 11 or 5 AF points. The active AF point is illuminated in red, superimposed within the viewfinder frame.

Drive Modes: The K-5 II offers several options for shooting single and multiple images at once. You can choose from the following Drive Modes:

  • Single Frame: Photos are taken one at a time with each press of the shutter release button.
  • Continuous: Multiple photos are taken while the shutter release button is pressed fully at approximately 7 frames per second (high speed) or 1.6 fps (low speed). A maximum of 30 frames can be taken at high speed; there is no maximum at low speed.
  • Self-Timer: A single photo is taken after approximately 12 seconds to allow the photographer to get into the picture. A 2-second self timer can be used to avoid camera shake when the shutter release button is pressed.
  • Remote Control: Using the optional remote control, the shutter is released immediately after the shutter release button on the remote is pressed. A 3-second delay Remote Control setting is also available. You can also use the remote control for continuous shooting. Pentax offers the optional Remote Control F or Waterproof Remote Control O-RC1.
  • Mirror Lock-up: If camera shake is evident even when the remote control or cable switch is used with a tripod, you can use the Mirror Lock-up function. This mode requires that you press the shutter release button twice: once to pop up the mirror, and again to take the picture. This mode can be used with or without the remote control.
  • Exposure Bracketing: You can take consecutive images at different exposure levels when the shutter release button is pressed. You can set the number of shots taken to 2, 3, or 5. The selected images are saved with each release, at standard exposure, some underexposed, and some overexposed. You can set the order of the exposures as desired. The bracket value can be set at +/- 2EV at 1/3 EV or 1/2 EV intervals. Exposure Bracketing can be used with the remote control or the self-timer.

Metering: You can select the portion of the image sensor to use for measuring brightness and determining exposure:

  • Multi-segment: The sensor meters the brightness in multiple zones (77).
  • Center-weighted: Metering is weighted at the center of the sensor.
  • Spot: The brightness is measured only within a limited area at the center of the sensor.

Exposure Modes: The top-mounted Mode Dial lets you set the desired Exposure Mode. You can select from the following:

  • User: You can save up to five exposure settings and recall them when needed.
  • (Green): Let's you capture images with fully automatic settings.
  • Program Automatic Exposure (P): The camera automatically sets the shutter speed and aperture value to obtain a proper exposure.
  • Sensitivity Priority (Sv): You set the sensitivity to suit the brightness of the subject. The shutter speed and aperture values are automatically set.
  • Shutter Priority (Tv): Lets you set the desired shutter speed for expressing moving objects. The aperture value is automatically set to give the proper exposure.
  • Aperture Priority (Av): Lets you set the desired aperture value for controlling depth of field. The shutter speed is automatically set to give the proper exposure.
  • Shutter & Aperture Priority (TAv): You can set both the desired shutter speed and aperture to take the picture. The sensitivity is automatically set so the manually set shutter speed and aperture will give the proper exposure.
  • Manual (M): After the shutter speed and aperture are automatically set for the proper exposure, you can change both settings to obtain the effect you desire.
  • Bulb (B): The shutter remains open as long as the shutter release button is pressed. Use this setting for shooting night scenes and fireworks which require long exposures.
  • Flash X-sync (X): The shutter speed is automatically set to 1/180 second. This setting is useful when using an external flash that does not automatically set the sync speed.
  • Movie: Lets you record movies in High or Standard Definition with sound. During recording, you can change the aperture value, perform EV compensation (up to +/-2 EV), and move the AF point.

EV Compensation: You can deliberately overexpose or underexpose a picture using EV Compensation. The compensation value can be set between -5 and +5 EV (-2 and +2 EV in Movie Mode). The step interval can be set at 1/3 EV or 1/2 EV intervals.

White Balance: White Balance is a function for adjusting the color of an image so that white objects appear white. You can choose Automatic White Balance (AWB), or a preset White Balance depending upon the lighting source: Daylight, Shade, Cloudy, Fluorescent Light (4 types), Tungsten, Flash, CTE (Color Temperature Enhancement), or Manual. You can save three settings in the Manual and Color Temperature white balance modes.

ISO Sensitivity: You can set the sensitivity to suit the brightness of the surroundings. The sensitivity can be set to ISO AUTO or manually to ISO 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600, 3200, 6400, or 12800. In some shooting modes, the ISO sensitivity can be expanded to a range of 80 to 51200. The range for Automatic Sensitivity Correction can be independently set on the lower and upper ends, and the parameters set to slow, standard, or fast.

Flash: The K-5 II has a built-in pop-up flash for use in low-light situations. The camera also has a top-mounted hot shoe for attaching an optional external flash unit, such as the AF540FGZ, AF360FGZ, AF200FG, or AF160FC. There are several Flash Modes to choose from:

  • Auto Flash: the flash automatically fires based on brightness of the scene
  • Auto + Red-eye Reduction: the flash fires automatically with a pre-flash for red-eye reduction
  • Flash On: the flash fires with each picture when manually popped up; does not charge when retracted
  • Manual + Red-eye Reduction: the flash fires when popped up with a pre-flash for red-eye reduction
  • Slow-speed Sync: the flash fires during a slow shutter speed; lights foreground subject while maintaining a distant lit background
  • Slow-speed Sync + Red-eye Reduction: the flash fires during a slow shutter speed, with a pre-flash for red-eye reduction
  • Trailing Curtain Sync: the flash fires immediately before closing the shutter to capture moving objects as they leave a trail behind.
  • Wireless Mode: Synchronizes a dedicated external flash, such as the AF540FGZ or AF360FGZ, without using a sync cord.
  • Flash Off: the flash does not fire regardless of subject brightness

Playback and Editing Features

Magnifying Images: Single images can be magnified up to 32 times in playback mode. Using the rear E-dial, the image is enlarged 1.2x to 32x in 20 steps. While the image is magnified, you can use the 4-way controller to move around in the magnified area.

Thumbnail: You can display multiple thumbnail images on the LCD monitor. You can choose the number of images to be displayed in the monitor: 4, 9, 16, 36, or 81. Images can also be displayed by folder or in a calendar filmstrip.

Image Editing: The Playback Mode Palette lets you perform playback and editing functions on recorded images and movies. Some of the functions include:

  • Image Rotation: When pictures are taken vertically, the vertical position sensor activates and rotation information is added to the image to enable playback with the correct image orientation. You can set the desired rotation direction in the menu.
  • Digital Filter: You can edit images using the following digital filters: Toy Camera, Retro, High Contrast, Sketch Filter, Water Color, Pastel, Posterization, Miniature, Base Parameter Adjustments (Brightness, Saturation, Hue, Contrast, Sharpness), Monochrome, Color, Extract Color, Soft, Starburst, Fish-eye, Slim, HDR (High Dynamic Range), and Custom Filter.
  • Resize: Change the number of recorded pixels and quality level and save it as a new image.
  • Cropping: Cuts out only the desired area of the selected image and saves it as a new image. Cropping can also change the aspect ratio from 3:2 to 4:3, 16:9 or 1:1, and rotate the image from -45° to +45° in increments of 1°.
  • Slideshow: play back still images one at a time in slide show fashion. You can adjust the interval (3 sec, 5 sec, 10 sec, or 30 sec) and the screen effects (fade, wipe, stripe, no effect).
  • Save as Manual WB: Allows you to copy the white balance setting of a captured image and save it as Manual WB.
  • RAW Development: Converts captured RAW files into JPEG or TIFF files.
  • Index: Allows you to join multiple images together and display them as an index print. You can also save the displayed index print as a new image.
  • Movie Editing: Movies can be divided and unwanted segments can be deleted.
  • Protect: You can protect images from being deleted.
  • DPOF: You can order conventional photograph prints by taking the SD Memory Card with recorded images to a store for printing. DPOF (Digital Print Order Form) settings allow you to specify the number of copies, and whether to imprint the date.
  • Save Destination: When using the optional GPS unit, you can save the GPS location information stored in an image as the destination for simple navigation.


HDMI: The K-5 II has a mini-HDMI (Type C) output for connecting the camera to an HDTV. A Mini-HDMI-to-HDMI cable is required (sold separately). You can set the HDMI output resolution to 1080i, 720p, 480p (NTSC), 576p (PAL), or Auto, corresponding to the maximum resolution of the AV device.

PC/AV: The proprietary PC/AV terminal can be used to connect the camera to your computer via the supplied I-USB7 cable. The terminal is USB 2.0 High-Speed compatible. You can also connect the camera to a TV using an optional I-AVC7 AV cable. The cable has composite video and mono RCA audio plugs. The AV output is automatically set based upon the hometown entered at the time of initial setup, in accordance with that region. The video output format can be manually set to NTSC or PAL, if necessary.

Microphone: The camera has a built-in monaural microphone. There is also a 3.5mm minijack input for an external stereo microphone.

Cable Release: A 2.5mm sub-minijack is provided for the optional CS-205 Cable Switch for operating the camera shutter release button.

DC Input: The K-5 II has a DC input for use with the optional K-AC132 AC adapter kit, which includes the D-AC120 AC adapter and an AC power cord. When using the monitor for a long time, or connecting the camera to a computer or AV device, it is recommended to operate the camera on AC power. The battery in the camera will not charge when connected to the AC adapter.

Battery Information

Lithium-Ion Battery: The Pentax K-5 II is powered by the D-LI90 Lithium-Ion rechargeable battery (7.2V / 1860mAh / 14Wh). The battery charges in approximately 320 minutes using the supplied D-BC90 battery charger. An optional AC adapter kit (K-AC132) is available from the manufacturer for connecting the camera to household current, if desired. The image storage capacity with a fully charged battery is as follows:

Battery Temperature Normal Shooting Flash Photography Playback Time
50% Use 100% Use
D-LI90 73°F (23°C) 980 images 740 images 610 images 440 minutes
32°F (0°C) 810 images 680 images 560 images 400 minutes

Battery Grip: On the bottom of the camera is a set of contacts that allow you to use the optional D-BG4 battery grip. The battery grip can accommodate an additional D-LI90 Lithium-Ion rechargeable battery, or AA lithium/Ni-MH/alkaline batteries. The battery grip has a shutter release button, front e-dial, rear e-dial, and AE-L button for shooting vertically.

Supplied Software

PENTAX Digital Camera Utility 4: The K-5 II comes with PENTAX Digital Camera Utility 4 software on CD-ROM. With the software, you can manage images saved on your computer, and develop RAW files, adjust the color of the images and other settings, and save the new images in JPEG or TIFF format.

Compatible Operating Systems: The PENTAX Digital Camera Utility 4 software is compatible with the following operating systems:

  • Windows: (can be run as a 32-bit application on any x64 Edition of Windows)
    • Windows 7
    • Windows Vista
    • Windows XP (SP3 or later)
  • Macintosh: Mac OS X 10.4.11, 10.5, 10.6, 10.7

Our Product Research Team

At Crutchfield, you'll get detailed, accurate information that's hard to find elsewhere. That's because we have our own in-house Product Research team. They verify what’s in the box, check the owner's manual, and record dimensions, features and specs. We stay on top of new products and technologies to help people make informed choices.