Panasonic SZ8 vs Pentax K20D

Panasonic Lumix DMC-SZ8 front
Pentax K20D front

Panasonic SZ8 vs Pentax K20D Key Specs

Panasonic SZ8
(Full Review)
  • 16MP - 1/2.3" Sensor
  • 3" Fixed Display
  • ISO 100 - 1600 (Bump to 6400)
  • Optical Image Stabilization
  • 1280 x 720 video
  • 24-288mm (F3.1-6.3) lens
  • 159g - 100 x 60 x 27mm
  • Released January 2014
Pentax K20D
(Full Review)
  • 15MP - APS-C Sensor
  • 2.7" Fixed Display
  • ISO 100 - 3200 (Boost to 6400)
  • Sensor based Image Stabilization
  • No Video
  • Pentax KAF2 Mount
  • 800g - 142 x 101 x 70mm
  • Introduced June 2008
  • Earlier Model is Pentax K10D
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Panasonic SZ8 vs Pentax K20D Overview

Its time to take a more detailed look at the Panasonic SZ8 versus Pentax K20D, one being a Small Sensor Superzoom and the other is a Advanced DSLR by manufacturers Panasonic and Pentax. The image resolution of the SZ8 (16MP) and the K20D (15MP) is fairly well matched but the SZ8 (1/2.3") and K20D (APS-C) offer different sensor dimensions.

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The SZ8 was brought out 5 years later than the K20D and that is quite a large gap as far as technology is concerned. Both cameras feature different body design with the Panasonic SZ8 being a Compact camera and the Pentax K20D being a Mid-size SLR camera.

Before going straight to a in-depth comparison, here is a concise highlight of how the SZ8 matches up vs the K20D with regard to portability, imaging, features and an overall grade.

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Reasons to pick Panasonic SZ8 over the Pentax K20D

 SZ8 K20D 
IntroducedJanuary 2014June 2008More recent by 68 months
Display size3"2.7"Larger display (+0.3")
Display resolution460k230kSharper display (+230k dot)

Reasons to pick Pentax K20D over the Panasonic SZ8

 K20D SZ8 
Manually focus Very exact focusing

Common features in the Panasonic SZ8 and Pentax K20D

 SZ8 K20D 
Display typeFixed Fixed Fixed display
Selfie screen Neither comes with selfie screen
Touch display Neither comes with Touch display

Panasonic SZ8 vs Pentax K20D Physical Comparison

For anyone who is planning to lug around your camera, you are going to need to think about its weight and proportions. The Panasonic SZ8 comes with physical dimensions of 100mm x 60mm x 27mm (3.9" x 2.4" x 1.1") and a weight of 159 grams (0.35 lbs) whilst the Pentax K20D has measurements of 142mm x 101mm x 70mm (5.6" x 4.0" x 2.8") accompanied by a weight of 800 grams (1.76 lbs).

Contrast the Panasonic SZ8 versus Pentax K20D in the latest Camera with Lens Size Comparison Tool. Camera Size Comparison with Lenses

Take into account, the weight of an Interchangeable Lens Camera will vary depending on the lens you have attached at the time. Following is a front view overall size comparison of the SZ8 against the K20D.

Panasonic SZ8 vs Pentax K20D size comparison

Looking at dimensions and weight, the portability rating of the SZ8 and K20D is 94 and 59 respectively.

Panasonic SZ8 vs Pentax K20D top view buttons comparison

Panasonic SZ8 vs Pentax K20D Sensor Comparison

Sometimes, it can be hard to visualize the gap between sensor measurements just by looking at technical specs. The visual underneath should provide you a better sense of the sensor dimensions in the SZ8 and K20D.

As you can tell, both of these cameras feature different resolutions and different sensor measurements. The SZ8 because of its tinier sensor is going to make shooting bokeh harder and the Panasonic SZ8 will resolve more detail having its extra 1 Megapixels. Greater resolution can also make it easier to crop images way more aggressively. The fresher SZ8 provides a benefit when it comes to sensor tech.

Panasonic SZ8 vs Pentax K20D sensor size comparison

Panasonic SZ8 vs Pentax K20D Screen and ViewFinder

Panasonic SZ8 vs Pentax K20D Screen and Viewfinder comparison
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Photography Type Scores

Portrait Comparison

Panasonic SZ8 Portrait photography information
Pentax K20D Portrait photography information
good resolution (16MP)
features face detection focus
manual focus not available
no manual mode
can't use external flash
sensor size is small (1/2.3")
no RAW files
you can focus manually
MP count good (15 megapixels)
nice sensor size (APS-C)
delivers RAW files
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Street Comparison

Panasonic SZ8 as a Street photography camera
Pentax K20D as a Street photography camera
image stabilization (Optical)
lighter than others (159 grams)
no articulating screen
sensor size is small (1/2.3")
no RAW files
image stabilization (Sensor based)
nice sensor size (APS-C)
delivers RAW files
weather sealing
screen is fixed
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Sports Comparison

Panasonic SZ8 Sports photography information
Pentax K20D Sports photography information
image stabilization (Optical)
good resolution (16MP)
low fps (1.0 fps)
no shutter priority mode
sensor size is small (1/2.3")
bad battery (200 CIPA)
no phase detect auto focus
image stabilization (Sensor based)
MP count good (15MP)
nice sensor size (APS-C)
weather sealing
has phase detect autofocus
continuous shooting slow (3.0 frames per second)
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Travel Comparison

Panasonic SZ8 Travel photography features
Pentax K20D Travel photography features
lighter than others (159g)
good resolution (16MP)
flash built-in
fairly wide (24mm)
great reach (288mm)
missing Time Lapse function
bad battery (200 per charge)
doesn't contain selfie friendly display
somewhat slow maximum aperture (f3.1)
weather sealing
MP count good (15MP)
has built in flash
does not have selfie friendly display
Photography Glossary

Landscape Comparison

Panasonic SZ8 as a Landscape photography camera
Pentax K20D as a Landscape photography camera
fairly wide (24mm)
screen is a good size (3 inches)
image stabilization (Optical)
good resolution (16MP)
manual focus not available
fixed lens (fixed lens mount)
somewhat slow maximum aperture (f3.1)
no manual mode
sensor size is small (1/2.3")
no RAW files
bad battery (200 per charge)
missing Time Lapse function
you can focus manually
switch lenses (Pentax KAF2 mount)
image stabilization (Sensor based)
MP count good (15 megapixels)
nice sensor size (APS-C)
delivers RAW files
weather sealing
screen is small (2.7")
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Vlogging Comparison

Panasonic SZ8 Vlogging advice
Pentax K20D Vlogging advice
fairly wide (24mm)
image stabilization (Optical)
features face detection focus
lighter than others (159 grams)
somewhat slow maximum aperture (f3.1)
doesn't contain selfie friendly display
video quality not great (1280 x 720 resolution)
missing external mic jack
no video
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Panasonic SZ8 vs Pentax K20D Specifications

Detailed spec comparison table for Panasonic SZ8 and Pentax K20D
 Panasonic Lumix DMC-SZ8Pentax K20D
General Information
Brand Panasonic Pentax
Model Panasonic Lumix DMC-SZ8 Pentax K20D
Class Small Sensor Superzoom Advanced DSLR
Released 2014-01-06 2008-06-25
Body design Compact Mid-size SLR
Sensor Information
Chip Venus Engine -
Sensor type CCD CMOS
Sensor size 1/2.3" APS-C
Sensor measurements 6.08 x 4.56mm 23.4 x 15.6mm
Sensor area 27.7mm² 365.0mm²
Sensor resolution 16 megapixel 15 megapixel
Anti aliasing filter
Aspect ratio 1:1, 4:3, 3:2 and 16:9 3:2
Peak resolution 4608 x 3456 4672 x 3104
Highest native ISO 1600 3200
Highest enhanced ISO 6400 6400
Lowest native ISO 100 100
RAW photos
Manual focus
AF touch
Continuous AF
AF single
Tracking AF
Selective AF
Center weighted AF
AF multi area
AF live view
Face detect AF
Contract detect AF
Phase detect AF
Number of focus points 9 11
Lens mounting type fixed lens Pentax KAF2
Lens focal range 24-288mm (12.0x) -
Max aperture f/3.1-6.3 -
Amount of lenses - 151
Crop factor 5.9 1.5
Range of display Fixed Type Fixed Type
Display diagonal 3 inch 2.7 inch
Display resolution 460 thousand dot 230 thousand dot
Selfie friendly
Touch capability
Display tech TFT LCD -
Viewfinder Information
Viewfinder type None Optical (pentaprism)
Viewfinder coverage - 95%
Viewfinder magnification - 0.64x
Minimum shutter speed 8 secs 30 secs
Fastest shutter speed 1/2000 secs 1/4000 secs
Continuous shutter speed 1.0 frames/s 3.0 frames/s
Shutter priority
Aperture priority
Manual exposure
Exposure compensation - Yes
Custom WB
Image stabilization
Built-in flash
Flash range 5.20 m 13.00 m (at ISO 100)
Flash settings Auto, Auto/Red-eye Reduction, Forced On, Slow Sync./Red-eye Reduction, Forced Off Auto, Red-Eye, Slow, Red-Eye Slow, Rear curtain, wireless
Hot shoe
Auto exposure bracketing
White balance bracketing
Fastest flash sync - 1/180 secs
Multisegment exposure
Average exposure
Spot exposure
Partial exposure
AF area exposure
Center weighted exposure
Video features
Supported video resolutions 1280 x 720 (30p), 640 x 480 (30p), 320 x 240 (30p) -
Highest video resolution 1280x720 None
Video file format Motion JPEG -
Microphone input
Headphone input
Wireless Built-In None
USB USB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec) USB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec)
GPS None None
Environment seal
Water proof
Dust proof
Shock proof
Crush proof
Freeze proof
Weight 159g (0.35 lbs) 800g (1.76 lbs)
Physical dimensions 100 x 60 x 27mm (3.9" x 2.4" x 1.1") 142 x 101 x 70mm (5.6" x 4.0" x 2.8")
DXO scores
DXO Overall score not tested 65
DXO Color Depth score not tested 22.9
DXO Dynamic range score not tested 11.1
DXO Low light score not tested 639
Battery life 200 photographs -
Form of battery Battery Pack -
Battery model - D-LI50
Self timer Yes (2 or 10 sec) Yes (2 or 10 sec)
Time lapse feature
Storage media SD/SDHC/SDXC, Internal SD/MMC/SDHC card
Storage slots 1 1
Price at release $275 $700