The 12.4-megapixel Pentax K-x digital SLR camera is a reviewer favorite among budget DSLRs. Though not quite as capable as better cameras from market leaders Canon and Nikon, such as the well regarded Canon EOS Rebel T2i (*Est. $650 with kit lens), it competes very well against other budget DSLR cameras. Critics are unanimous in praising the image quality of the K-x, as well as its overall speed. Like most newer DSLRs, it has a Live View mode, though testers say speeds and features -- such as auto-focus -- are not as speedy when using the less-than-crisp LCD screen. Low-light performance is a letdown too. A reviewer at CNET is disappointed with the K-x's image stabilization, though other sources are satisfied with its performance. A few reviewers also suggest that the K-x's diminutive size could be an issue for large-handed photographers, but all praise the sturdy build quality of this camera's body. The K-x has a number of features that are rare in DSLRs, including that it uses AA batteries instead of a proprietary battery pack. Most experts find that whether this is good or bad comes down to personal preference (and what kind of batteries are used). The K-x also comes in 12 colors, from traditional black to pink and olive green.
Many reviewers have weighed in on the Pentax K-x. Photography niche sites PopPhoto.com, DCResource.com and PhotographyBlog.com all give the K-x a thorough, expert evaluation. CNET and ConsumerReports.org also weigh the K-x's merits in comparison with other cameras, though their descriptions aren't as detailed. DxOMark.com tests only camera's sensors, but the K-x does well there too.
Philip Ryan at PopPhoto.com says Pentax has been "the go-to brand for decades" for budget SLRs, and the new K-x model continues that tradition. He says image quality is on par with similarly priced DSLRs from Canon and Nikon, and that the K-x it shoots pretty good HD video despite its low price. However, Ryan notes that low-light performance isn't as good, and the Pentax K-x may be small for those with big hands.
Review: Camera Test: Pentax K-x, Philip Ryan, April 12, 2010
Digital Camera Resource Page editor Jeff Keller calls the Pentax K-x "well built, feature-packed, responsive and a great value for the money." Though skeptical at first, Keller describes how he warmed to the K-x's features and performance, especially the build quality, photo quality and AA battery power. He does note that the exposure settings seemed off, and the LCD screen isn't very sharp.
Review: DCRP Review: Pentax K-x, Jeff Keller, March 18, 2010
Mark Goldstein at PhotographyBlog.com gives the Pentax K-x a 5-star "essential" rating. It "punches well above its mid-range weight," he says, with image quality standing out. Goldstein's only major concern is that the camera is small, though he admits this may be a selling point for some. Also, while impressed with the HD video capabilities, Goldstein finds recording video on the K-x (like on most DSLRs) more trouble than it's worth.
Review: Pentax K-x Review, Mark Goldstein, Oct. 28, 2009
CNET's digital-camera reviewer Lori Grunin puts the Pentax K-x second on her list of the best entry-level DSLRs, behind the more-expensive Canon Rebel T2i. In her review of the K-x, Grunin praises image quality but laments image stabilization on the K-x, while performance charts show how the Pentax camera is faster than same-class competitors from Sony, Nikon and Canon.
Review: Pentax K-x, Lori Grunin, March 11, 2010
The Pentax K-x is reviewed as part of ConsumerReports.org's latest coverage of digital SLR cameras. ConsumerReports.org also has a separate section on SLR lenses, vital accessories which we don't see reviewed as often as the camera bodies themselves.
Review: Digital SLRs, Editors of ConsumerReports.org
Lab tests at DxOMark.com only evaluate digital-camera sensors. The sensor on the Pentax K-x ranks 19th here, beating out those of many more-expensive cameras. It is tied in overall score with the Nikon D5000, but no other sub-$1,000 camera comes close.
Review: Tests and Reviews for the Camera Pentax K-x, Editors of DxOMark.com, As of Sept. 2010