Camera company Pentax wants a space in your pocket, but it’s OK: you don’t need big pockets.
They’ve unveiled the Pentax Q, and they’re calling it the smallest, lightest interchangeable lens camera in the world.
And it’s true: the Q is small. It measures just four inches across and barely more than an inch deep. But there’s a lot of clever packed inside this minuscule box of tricks, including a 12MP CMOS sensor, a 3-inch screen, pop-up flash and a whole bunch of software magic.
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The Q isn’t a DSLR. And it isn’t a micro four-thirds camera. It’s a point-and-shoot with interchangeable lenses, and a lens mount system of its own, called (predictably enough) the Q Mount.
The design ditches a lot of things that make other cameras bulky: things like flipping mirrors, optical viewfinders, focus plates, and autofocus sensors.
When it’s released in the fall, the camera is likely to cost about $800, including a standard 50mm f1.9 lens. A selection of other lenses will be available to go with it, including a wide angle, a zoom, and what Pentax calls “toy” lenses.
So who is Pentax aiming at with this thing? Anything with interchangeable lenses is probably going to appeal more to photography enthusiasts rather than holidaymakers or family snapshot takers. But when some of those lenses are called “toys”, perhaps Pentax is trying to pull in some of the people who’ve discovered the joys of retro photography in photo sharing iApps like Instagram.
The Q also has some of the same fashionable retro design features seen on other pocket-size pro-am cameras recently, most notably Fuji’s X100. This is the Mad Men design influence, making our most advanced new technology look as vintage as possible. The real appeal of the Q, of course, will be in the picture quality. With such a tiny sensor some enthusiasts have already voiced concerns that it won’t be up to the job, especially in low light. You’ll have to wait until fall to get your hands on one and find out.
LINK: Pentax Q [PentaxImaging.com]