Pentax KP

Pentax KP front
  • 24MP - APS-C Sensor
  • 3" Tilting Display
  • ISO 100 - 819200
  • Sensor based 5-axis Image Stabilization
  • 1/6000s Maximum Shutter
  • 1920 x 1080 video
  • Pentax KAF2 Mount
  • 703g - 132 x 101 x 76mm
  • Introduced January 2017
  • Read full specs
  • Alternatives
  • Lenses
  • Size Comparison
  • FAQ

Pentax KP summary

Pentax KP is Pentax's Advanced DSLR camera first revealed on January of 2017. The camera comes with a 24MP, CMOS APS-C sized sensor and has a full resolution of 6016 x 4000.

The KP is ranked #27 out of 92 in Advanced DSLR cameras & overall #158 out of 1465 for digital cameras in our list. Please check our Smart camera filter to see camera listings based on your custom requirements.

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The following is a graph of multiple factors used in the rating system.

Pentax KP family

The Pentax KP is part of a family of digital cameras. You can see the full range underneath.

ModelVisualizeResolutionSensor SizeMax fpsReleased
Pentax-K-3-Mark-III front thumbnailPentax K-3 III
KP vs K-3 III
26MPAPS-C12.0 fps2021
Pentax-KP front thumbnailPentax KP24MPAPS-C7.0 fps2017
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Pentax-K-3-II front thumbnailPentax K-3 II
KP vs K-3 II
24MPAPS-C8.3 fps2015
Pentax-K-S1 front thumbnailPentax K-S1
KP vs K-S1
20MPAPS-C5.4 fps2014
Pentax-K-3 front thumbnailPentax K-3
KP vs K-3
24MPAPS-C8.0 fps2014
Pentax-K-5-IIs front thumbnailPentax K-5 IIs
KP vs K-5 IIs
16MPAPS-C7.0 fps2013
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Pentax-K-5-II front thumbnailPentax K-5 II
KP vs K-5 II
16MPAPS-C7.0 fps2013

Pentax KP Pros and Cons

Below is a checklist of benefits and drawbacks of the Pentax KP based on aspects which are oftentimes regarded as useful in a camera.

above average high ISO (819,200)
above average minimum ISO (100)
built in image stabilization (Sensor based 5-axis)
delivers RAW files
good MP (24 megapixels)
good sized screen (3")
great video quality (1920 x 1080 resolution)
has built in flash
has mic socket
high shutter speed (1/6,000 seconds)
includes face detect focusing
includes tracking focus
interchangeable lenses (Pentax KAF2 mount)
manual focus
nice clear screen (921 thousand dots)
quiet mode (1/24,000 seconds)
sensor size is good (APS-C)
tilting screen
weather sealing
display isn't selfie friendly
doesn't have HDMI socket
doesn't have headphone socket
lacks phase detect AF
terrible battery life (390 per charge)
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Pentax KP Sensor info

The Pentax KP houses the PRIME IV processor chip. The sensor specification in the Pentax KP is 23.5mm x 15.6mm (APS-C). The 367 mm² sensor can capture 6016 x 4000 pixels and aspect ratios of 3:2. The camera features Image Stabilization (Sensor based 5-axis). In body stabilization is preferable than digital stabilization as the latter can cause cropping.

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The CMOS sensor has 24 megapixels and gives a native ISO range of 100 - 819200. RAW format is saved which means that you have wider room to maneuver in post.

The graphic underneath displays the KP's sensor dimensions when compared to other common sizes. The KP sensor has a crop factor of 1.5 and is highlighted in green.

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To get a sense of specific aspect ratios, you can refer to the visual below.

Camera sensor aspect ratios

Pentax KP dimensions

Pentax KP weighs about 1.55 lb (703g / 24.80 oz) & the volume of the camera is 132mm x 101mm x 76mm (5.2" x 4.0" x 3.0"). The weight of average Advanced DSLR camera is 776g so the Pentax KP is similar as compared to various rivals.

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Down below is a picture of the Pentax KP alongside a soft drink to help you to get a feel for its scale.

Pentax KP dimensions scale

The top view just below will show the button design on the KP.

Pentax KP topview buttons dials

Pentax KP Lens info

The KP works with the Pentax KAF2 mount and has 17 lenses on sale. Below is some of the lenses we have in our database which will fit the KP.

ModelVisualizeFocal LengthApertureStabilizedWeight
Samsung-D-Xenon-18-250mm-F3.5-6.3 lensSamsung D-Xenon 18-250mm F3.5-6.318-250mmf/3.5-6.3 455g
Samsung-D-Xenon-100mm-F2.8-macro lensSamsung D-Xenon 100mm F2.8 macro100mmf/2.8 345g
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Samsung-D-Xenon-10-17mm-F3.5-4.5-Fisheye lensSamsung D-Xenon 10-17mm F3.5-4.5 Fisheye10-17mmf/3.5-4.5 320g
Samsung-D-Xenon-18-55mm-F3.5-5.6 lensSamsung D-Xenon 18-55mm F3.5-5.618-55mmf/3.5-5.6 225g
Samsung-D-Xenon-16-45mm-F4 lensSamsung D-Xenon 16-45mm F416-45mmf/4.0 365g
Pentax-smc-DA-300mm-F4.0-ED-IF-SDM lensPentax smc DA 300mm F4.0 ED IF SDM300mmf/4.0 1070g
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Pentax-smc-DA-60-250mm-F4.0-ED-IF-SDM lensPentax smc DA 60-250mm F4.0 ED IF SDM60-250mmf/4.0 1040g
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Pentax KP Connectivity

The KP has the following connectivity:

  • USB Yes
  • Wireless Yes
  • GPS Yes

Digital cameras with NFC and Bluetooth compatibility can be controlled wirelessly with smartphones. You can send pictures and usually adjust camera settings with no need to connect directly to the camera.

Several applications even give a Liveview and release the shutter in case you are not close to the camera. If the camera includes a HDMI port, it can be connected to an external monitor. Most cameras enable you to charge the battery pack with the USB socket.

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Pentax KP Video info

The highest possible video quality in the Pentax KP is 1920 x 1080 and you can shoot in MPEG-4 and H.264 format. 1080p quality delivers a great balance in quality versus file sizes but 1080p won't give you any room to crop. Although the camera offers a mic port, it is missing a headphone port which means that you won't have the capability to check your audio levels.

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Pentax KP Weather Sealing

Pentax KP provides weather proofing making it a great option for use in rough environments. This is especially helpful in case you are unsure about the conditions you might face in outdoor photography.

Pentax KP Display and Viewfinder

The Pentax KP comes with a 3 inch tilting display screen supporting a resolution of 921 thousand dots.

Sadly the display screen is not a touch screen.

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The ViewFinder specs for Pentax KP are the following:

  • ViewFinder Optical (pentaprism)
  • ViewFinder Coverage 100%
  • ViewFinder Magnification 0.63x

For sunny outdoor conditions which make the camera displays washed out and difficult to see, viewfinders are quite valuable.

Pentax KP Shutter info

Pentax KP continuous shooting rate is 7.0 frames/s. The highest shutter speed is 1/6000 sec. The camera also provides silent electronic shutter of 1/24000 sec. Keep in mind that the electronic shutter can result in "rolling shutter" in certain lighting conditions.

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Pentax KP Flash and Hot shoe info

Pentax KP features both built in flash together with external flash support.

Pentax KP Autofocus info

Pentax KP features just Contrast Detect Auto Focus & is missing Phase Detect Auto Focus. Phase Detection autofocusing is a lot snappier & accurate in comparison with Contrast Detect autofocusing. The camera comes with Face detect which can be helpful for people photography.

It comes with 27 focus points to pick from. It also comes with Tracking Auto Focus for moving objects. Pentax KP features manual focus in case it is required in low light situations or you want to have more exact control on focus.

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Pentax KP Battery life

The battery life (D-LI109) on the Pentax KP is fashioned to last for 390 photos according to the CIPA requirements which is lesser compared with it's competition. The average Advanced DSLR camera battery life is 909. Nikon D780 has got the best (2260) battery life in this group of cameras.

Below is a listing of Advanced DSLR cameras which have the best battery life:

ModelVisualizeBattery LifeRAWNFCBluetooth
Nikon-D780 front thumbnailNikon D780
KP vs D780
2260 yesnoyes
Nikon-D850 front thumbnailNikon D850
KP vs D850
1840 yesyesyes
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Nikon-Df front thumbnailNikon Df
KP vs Df
1400 yesnono
Canon-EOS-90D front thumbnailCanon 90D
KP vs 90D
1300 yesnoyes
Nikon-D500 front thumbnailNikon D500
KP vs D500
1240 yesyesyes

Pentax KP for specific categories of photography

The following diagram displays a summary of the Pentax KP for specific categories of photography. To look at more, have a look at the specific section underneath.

Portrait photography with Pentax KP

The Pentax KP gets a points tally of 80 which is tremendous, meaning that it is a tremendous fit for portrait photography. Shooting portraits leans heavily to sensor specs, RAW support along with the potential to work with off-camera flash.

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has manual focus
resolution is good (24 megapixels)
sensor size is nice (APS-C)
supports face detect autofocus
saves RAW formats

Pentax KP as a Street photography camera

Coming in at a outstanding points tally of 76, the Pentax KP is a outstanding pick for street photography. A very good street photography camera gives a fine balance of picture quality plus portability.

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has a tilting screen
has image stabilization (Sensor based 5-axis)
sensor size is good (APS-C)
supports RAW formats
environment sealing
good high ISO (819,200)

Pentax KP as a Sports photography camera

A nice sports photography rating of 72 means the Pentax KP is a fine choice for photographing sports. A camera should have good autofocus plus shutter speeds for sports photography.

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great max shutter speed (1/6,000s)
silent shooting (1/24,000s)
image stabilization (Sensor based 5-axis)
MP count decent (24MP)
good sensor size (APS-C)
includes tracking focus
environment sealing
bad battery life (390 shots)
does not have phase detect autofocus

Pentax KP Travel photography details

Size is really crucial when choosing a travel camera. Overall, the Pentax KP gets a above average 62 as a travel camera which is a good fit to purchase for your holidays.

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weather sealing
MP count good (24 megapixels)
built-in flash
bad battery life (390 CIPA)
display isn't selfie friendly

Landscape photography with Pentax KP

If you are planning to choose a camera for landscape photos, the most vital aspect will no doubt be image quality. The Pentax KP with it's terrific rating of 78 for a landscape camera is a tremendous fit amongst it's competition.

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manual focus
switch lenses (Pentax KAF2 mount)
screen size is good (3 inches)
has image stabilization (Sensor based 5-axis)
resolution is good (24MP)
sensor size is nice (APS-C)
very good high ISO (819,200)
saves RAW files
environment sealing
bad battery (390 CIPA)

Pentax KP Vlogging details

A vlogging camera really should posses a moving screen, mic input and if possible IBIS. Taking all things in to account, the Pentax KP is just not very good for vlogging as it delivers a lousy rating of 35.

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built in image stabilization (Sensor based 5-axis)
features face detect autofocus
video resolution high (1920 x 1080 pixels)
comes with microphone support
doesn't posses selfie friendly screen

Pentax KP Alternatives

If you are trying to find alternatives to the KP, below is a number of the highest scored cameras which fall within the category of Advanced DSLR.

The line graph just below gives you a bird's eye view of the KP versus it's highest ranking rivals listed previously.

Following are additional cameras you might view as alternate options. To read through a comprehensive comparison, simply click the "compare" link.

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General Information
Pentax KP
Advanced DSLR
Physical type
Mid-size SLR
Sensor Information
Sensor type
Processor Chip
Sensor size
Sensor dimensions
23.5 x 15.6mm
Sensor surface area
Sensor resolution
24 megapixel
Anti aliasing filter
Aspect ratio
Peak resolution
6016 x 4000
RAW support
Highest native ISO
Minimum native ISO
Focus manually
Touch to focus
Autofocus continuous
Autofocus single
Tracking autofocus
Autofocus selectice
Autofocus center weighted
Multi area autofocus
Live view autofocus
Face detect autofocus
Contract detect autofocus
Phase detect autofocus
Number of focus points
Cross focus points
Lens mounting type
Pentax KAF2
Total lenses
Crop factor
Display type
Display sizing
Display resolution
921 thousand dots
Selfie friendly
Touch friendly
Viewfinder Information
Viewfinder type
Optical (pentaprism)
Viewfinder coverage
Viewfinder magnification
DXO scores
DXO Overall score
not tested
DXO Color Depth score
not tested
DXO Dynamic range score
not tested
DXO Low light score
not tested
Minimum shutter speed
30 seconds
Fastest shutter speed
1/6000 seconds
Fastest quiet shutter speed
1/24000 seconds
Continuous shutter rate
7.0 frames/s
Shutter priority
Aperture priority
Expose Manually
Exposure compensation
Set white balance
Image stabilization
Built-in flash
Flash range
6.00 m (at ISO 100)
Flash options
Auto, auto w/redeye reduction, flash on w/redeye reduction, slow sync, trailing curtain sync, manual, wireless
External flash
WB bracketing
Multisegment metering
Average metering
Spot metering
Partial metering
AF area metering
Center weighted metering
Video features
Video resolutions
1920 x 1080 (60i, 30p)
Highest video resolution
Video data format
MPEG-4, H.264
Mic port
Headphone port
USB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec)
Environment sealing
Water proof
Dust proof
Shock proof
Crush proof
Freeze proof
703g (1.55 pounds)
Physical dimensions
132 x 101 x 76mm (5.2" x 4.0" x 3.0")
Battery life
390 pictures
Battery type
Battery Pack
Battery model
Self timer
Yes (2 or 12 secs)
Time lapse feature
Type of storage
SD/SDHC/SDXC (UHS-I supported)
Card slots
Cost at release