Photokina Show Report Pt. 3

Pentax K-m DSLR, new SanDisk memory cards and readers

Since many of the main manufacturers had already announced their big launches in the weeks leading up to Photokina, there were very few real surprises to be seen. However at least one of the big name brands had kept one new product secret until the first day of the show. The Pentax K-m is a new 10.2-megapixel entry-level digital SLR positioned as a lightweight sister model for the popular K200D. It has many of the same advanced features as other DSLRs in the Pentax range, including sensor-shift image stabilisation, automatic sensor cleaning, a fast five-point AF system and a 2.7-inch 230k monitor, although it lacks the weatherproof seals of the more advanced models.

The body is made of plastic, but I had a chance to handle the camera on the Pentax stand and I was impressed with its overall feeling of strength and solidity, as well as its excellent viewfinder. It measures 122.5 x 91.5 x 67.5mm and weighs 525g minus battery or memory card, which is considerably smaller and lighter than the K200D.

The K-m will go on sale in November priced at a very competitive £399.99 with the smc DA-L 18-55mm lens, or an even more tempting £499.99 as a twin-lens kit with the smc DA-L 18-55mm and 50-200mm telephoto zoom.

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