The Pentax K-30 is the Entry Level DSLR Designed For Total Klutzes; 50mm f1.8 Comes Out Too!

Today Pentax has announced their new mid-range DSLR, the dust and water resistant K-30. Along with the new camera Pentax also announced a new DA 50mm f/1.8 lens to go with their existing 50mm f/1.4 and 2.8 macro lenses. The new K-30 is designed to be the perfect creative companion for travel and outdoor photographers.

The new camera features 81 seals and Pentax has gone through a lot of hard work to make sure that “Every seam, every button, every hinge has been weather sealed for adventure-proof creative photography”.  The body can also be used in subfreezing temperatures as low as 14°F (-10°C).

There is also a newly developed AF module for the camera named SAFOX Ixi+. The new AF has 11 focus points and 9 of them are cross type for capturing subjects in sharp focus. There is also an added spotbeam to help the camera focus in low light.

A 16mp sensor now resides in the K-30 which has a sensitivity of 100-12,800 ISO and up to 25,600 ISO if expanded. Pentax states that the sensor along with their Prime M imaging engine assures high speed data readout to deliver super hight resolution, rich gradation images.

The pentaprism finder features a 100% view and upgraded live view. The live view is now a smooth 60 fps and features focus peaking for easier manual focusing. The camera allows HD recording at 1080p at 30, 25 or 24 fps, the camera also records 60 fps at 720p. The user may record video in either shutter or aperture priority modes. Also “artistic effects” can be added to clips using various custom image modes. There are 19 digital filters and the camera allows you to add multiple filters onto a single image.

A big feature of Pentax cameras is the Shake Reduction or “SR”. This Shake Reduction can reduce blur due to camera shake by about four shutter steps. This is helpful in the case where you use old Pentax film lenses that never had such technology available. For time-lapse photography the camera has an interval shooting mode along with a feature that will help eliminate light trails during with the option GPS accessory.

Another useful feature unique to Pentax is the fact that they still have two options for a power source. You can either use the rechargeable battery which provides up to 480 images or you can have the choose to use AA batteries if you get desperate. The option for AA batteries is helpful if you are in a situation where recharging your battery isn’t possible.

The new Pentax K-30 will be available in July 2012 with a price of $849.95 for the body only and $899 with the DA L 18-55mm zoom lens.

The PENTAX-DA 50mm f/1.8 lens will be available July 2012 with a retail price of $249.95.

UPDATE: The K30 is available at B&H in Black, white and blue.