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The Pentax Q10 has been developed based on the Pentax Q which was released last year. It has a 12.4 megapixel sensor and is available in black, silver or red for £379.00 with a 5-15mm lens, or £539.00 with the 15-45mm lens supplied as well.
To make picture taking as easy as possible there is Auto Picture and a range of scene modes such as portrait, landscape and macro. The appropriate settings are then automatically adjusted for the scene. If you want more control there are full manual controls available as well. The Q10 can record a maximum of 5 shots at a frame rate of 5 fps to capture fast moving objects in a series of pictures. Pentax have upgraded AF performance, with an AF assist light to ensure focusing is both quick and easy in dimly lit conditions, with Face Recognition AF able to detect up to 12 faces. Pentax have included a bokeh control function which automatically assesses the distance between the in-focus subject and obtrusive objects in view to create a defocused foreground and/or background.
Videos are recorded in full 1080p HD at 30 fps, with a micro-HDMI terminal for connection to a HDTV.
- 12 megapixel CMOS back illuminated sensor
- Pentax Q lens mount
- Shake Reduction System
- 3.0 inch LCD monitor with approx. 460,000 dots
- Full manual controls and RAW shooting
- Full 1080p HD video recording at 30 fps
- ISO 100 - 6400
- HDR mode
- 5 fps continuous shooting
- Available in black, silver or red
On top of the camera is a playback button, on/off switch, shutter release, chunky mode dial and another dial to set aperture and shutter speed when in the respective mode. The flash can be used when not released, but if you want it further away from the camera body, flick the switch on the top to pop it up. There is also a hotshoe on the top for an external flash.
Despite the small size, there is a large 3 inch screen with a decent resolution which is bright and clear in varying lighting conditions. There are doors on either end of the camera, with the battery in one and the SD card slot in the other. On the bottom is a rubber cover where you'll find the PC/AV and HDMI outputs alongside the metal tripod socket. The 5-15mm lens actually extends further at 5mm than it does at 15mm.
Battery life is rated at 250 shots according to CIPA test results, we were able to take 228 shots before the battery went flat, this involved editing pictures via playback. We took a number of shots to test the camera's responsiveness, from switch on to first photo, shot to shot, focusing speed etc. We take a number of shots and then use the average to ensure accurate and consistent tests, making it easy to compare with other cameras.
|Shutter Response||0.175 secs|
|Wide - Focus / Shutter Response||0.5 secs|
|Full zoom - Focus / Shutter Response||0.5 sec|
|Switch on Time to Taking a Photo||3.9 secs|
|Shot to Shot without Flash||1.8 secs|
|Shot to Shot with Flash||2.2 secs|
|Continuous Shooting - Hi (JPEG)||5 fps|
|Continuous Shooting - Lo (JPEG)||1.25 fps|
|Continuous Shooting - Hi with flash (JPEG)||0.5 fps|
|Continuous Shooting - Lo with flash (JPEG)||0.4 fps|
|Continuous Shooting - Lo (RAW)||1.2 fps|
|Continuous Shooting - Lo with flash (RAW)||0.2 fps|
When using continuous shooting in RAW, speed slows significantly after just three shots. All the continuous shooting modes record in full 12 megapixel resolution.
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Pentax Q10 Sample Photos
HDR | 1/320 sec | f/4.0 | 5.0 mm | ISO 200
Sample Photos - Images are well exposed with excellent colour reproduction and also performs well in low light. Portraits have pleasant skin tones and are free of red-eye when using the flash. To extend the dynamic range there is a HDR mode and the Q10 is capable of shooting with fast shutter speeds. A speed of 1/1250 has been used to freeze the movement of the water in the example above.
Pentax Q10 Lens test images
Lens Performance - Detail is good throughout the images when shooting at both ends of the lens, with a good control over purple fringing. The 5-15mm lens has a minimum focusing distance of 30cm which means it's not an ideal lens for close-up macro photography.
ISO100 | 1/10 sec | f/4.0 | 13.3 mm
ISO200 | 1/20 sec | f/4.0 | 13.3 mm
ISO400 | 1/40 sec | f/4.0 | 13.3 mm
ISO800 | 1/80 sec | f/4.0 | 13.3 mm
ISO1600 | 1/160 sec | f/4.0 | 13.3 mm
ISO3200 | 1/250 sec | f/4.5 | 13.3 mm
ISO6400 | 1/500 sec | f/4.5 | 13.3 mm
ISO Noise Performance - Noise is low at ISO 100 and 200, but there is enough to cause the images to become a little soft at ISO 400. Images are a little softer at ISO 800, but significant detail is lost at ISO 1600 and the appearance of chroma noise giving a slight purple tint. Images are very noisy at ISO 3200 and at ISO 6400 there is a green and purple tint to the images at these higher two settings thanks to the chroma noise.
Pentax Q10 White-balance test images
White Balance Performance - The AWB has struggled under our studio lighting, particularly when using the incandscent lighting, with the incandescent preset taking a much better picture. Under the fluorescent lights to AWB setting gives a slight cast in the image. There are four different fluorescent presets - 1 and 2 gave colours casts with 3 and 4 performing well.
Pentax Q10 Digital filters
Brilliant Colour | 1/4 sec | f/4.5 | 14.9 mm | ISO 100
Unicolor Bold | 1/4 sec | f/4.5 | 14.9 mm | ISO 100
Vintage Colour | 1/4 sec | f/4.5 | 15.0 mm | ISO 100
Digital Filter Colour | 1/25 sec | f/8.0 | 8.4 mm | ISO 3200
Digital Filter Extract Colour | 1/25 sec | f/8.0 | 8.4 mm | ISO 3200
Digital Filter Fish Eye | 1/25 sec | f/8.0 | 8.4 mm | ISO 3200
Digital Filter HDR | 1/25 sec | f/8.0 | 8.4 mm | ISO 3200
Digital Filter High Contrast | 1/25 sec | f/8.0 | 8.4 mm | ISO 3200
Digital Filter Invert Color | 1/25 sec | f/8.0 | 8.4 mm | ISO 3200
Digital Filter Monochrome | 1/25 sec | f/8.0 | 8.4 mm | ISO 3200
Digital Filter Non | 1/25 sec | f/8.0 | 8.4 mm | ISO 3200
Digital Filter Posterization | 1/25 sec | f/8.0 | 8.4 mm | ISO 3200
Digital Filter Retro | 1/25 sec | f/8.0 | 8.4 mm | ISO 3200
Digital Filter Shading | 1/25 sec | f/8.0 | 8.4 mm | ISO 3200
Digital Filter Sketch Filter | 1/25 sec | f/8.0 | 8.4 mm | ISO 3200
Digital Filter Slim | 1/25 sec | f/8.0 | 8.4 mm | ISO 3200
Digital Filter Soft | 1/25 sec | f/8.0 | 8.4 mm | ISO 3200
Digital Filter Toy Camera | 1/25 sec | f/8.0 | 8.4 mm | ISO 3200
Digital Filter Watercolour | 1/25 sec | f/8.0 | 8.4 mm | ISO 3200
Digital Filters - There are plenty of options for adding creativity both before and after shooting, with lots of examples of the various modes available.
Video - Below is a video recorded in full 1080p HD, quality is good. There is a video on the ePHOTOzine Youtube page that has been recorded while using the zoom.
Value For MoneyThe Pentax Q10 is available with the 5-15mm for £379.00 and is also available with the 15-45mm and 5-15mm lens for £539.00. The cameras below are around the same price with a lens included.
|Nikon 1 V1 and 10-30mm lens||Panasonic Lumix DMC- GF5 with 14-42mm lens||Sony NEX-F3 and 18-55mm lens||Pentax K-01 and 18-55mm lens||Olympus E-PM2 and 14-42mm lens|
You'll also need to buy a memory card and a case or bag to keep your camera safe and protected - have a look at our complete guide to camera bags.
If you're keen on keeping size down but want the luxury of being able to change to different lenses, the Q10 is a good option, particularly as it's less than £400 and there are a decent number of lenses available including the 15-45mm lens which is a 35mm equivalent of 83-249mm. If you already have a number of K mount lenses for your Pentax SLR, you can purchase the Q for K mount adapter and use those lenses (Pentax say this will give a range of 215 extra lenses) on the Q10, which extends their focal length by roughly 5.5x.
|The Pentax Q10 is well-built and ideal if you want an extremely compact mirrorless camera.|
Pentax Q10 ProsFull 1080p HD video recording
Extremely small interchangeable lens camera
Good size screen
Full manual controls and RAW shooting
Pentax Q10 ConsBattery life CIPA rating is quite low
Chroma noise kicks in at ISO 1600
AWB struggles under the studio lights
|VALUE FOR MONEY|
Pentax Q10 Specifications
|CCD pixels||12Mp (Megapixels)|
|Sensor Size||1/2.3 inch|
|Sensor Size (width)||No Data|
|Sensor Size (height)||No Data|
|Screen resolution||460,000 dots|
|Shutter speeds shortest||1/8000sec|
|Shutter speeds longest||30sec|
|ISO sensitivity||100 - 6400|
|Viewfinder Resolution||No Data|
|Optical Zoom with Video||Yes|
|Battery Type||Rechargeable Lithium-ion Battery D-LI68|
|Box Contents||USB Cable I-USB7, Strap O-ST131, Rechargeable Lithium-ion Battery D-LI68, Battery Charger D-BC68P, Hot shoe cover FK, Body mount cover|