Pentax Q

Released June, 2011
  • 12.7 MP
  • 1/2.5" 6.17 x 4.55 mm CMOS
  • 3" LCD
The Pentax Q has 3 different JPEG file quality settings available, with Best being the highest quality option, and it also supports RAW (Adobe DNG).
by Photography Blog (Oct, 2011)
7.7 Out of 10

Camera Rocket Review Our evaluation of the Pentax Q

Image Quality

RAW image quality independent of lens

Pentax Q
DxOMark Low light, DxOMark Color depth and DxOMark Dynamic range


How fast and easily does the camera nail focus

Pentax Q
Focus lag and focus points


How much delay is there between you and your photo?

Pentax Q
Focus lag, continuous shooting and Startup delay


What do the experts think?

Pentax Q
Reviews from,,, and 4 more


Camera Rocket Score

Image Quality, Focusing, Responsiveness and Reviews

Pentax Q

Benchmarks Real world tests of the Pentax Q

Low light image quality Highest ISO setting that still achieves great image quality

Pentax Q
189 ISO
536 ISO

Resolution Results from photos of standard resolution charts

Pentax Q
2,000 LPH
Nikon 1 J1
2,600 LPH

Focus lag Delay between fully pressing shutter to image capture

Pentax Q
706 ms
Nikon 1 J2
94 ms
Nikon 1 J1
94 ms

Shutter lag Delay to take a photo when prefocused

Pentax Q
82 ms
60 ms
72 ms

Startup delay Delay from power on to first photo

Pentax Q
3,700 ms
900 ms

Continuous shooting Delay between fully pressing shutter to image capture

Pentax Q
5 fps
Nikon 1 J2
60 fps
Nikon 1 J1
60 fps

Photo Gallery Wallpaper quality closeups of the camera

Reviews Word on the street for the Pentax Q

Sure, some of the controls are a little too small for our liking, but overall the Pentax Q is a lot easier to use than it size suggests.

The Pentax Q is built around a 1/2.3inch CMOS sensor that is backside-illuminated for better low-light performance, and which delivers 12.4-megapixels of effective resolution.

At small print sizes and for sharing on the web, images taken at ISO 3200 are perfectly acceptable, looking much better than you might expect from a small sensor camera like this.


6.7 Out of 10

What People Are Saying Give it to me straight


At present Pentax offers a range of five lenses – a 8.5mm f/1.9 Standard Prime, a 5-15mm f/2.8-4.5 Standard Zoom, a 3.2mm f/5.6 Fish-Eye, a 6.3mm, f/7.1 Toy Lens Wide and an 18mm f/8 Toy Lens Telephoto.
by TrustedReviews (Oct, 2011)
Even though this cheaper camera lacks the scope for interchangeable lenses, its zoom lens already covers a greater focal range than the standard zoom found in the Pentax Q £730 twin-lens kit.
by TechRadar (Nov, 2011)
You do need to be careful when swapping lenses though, as the sensor sits almost immediately behind the lens, which means it’s fully exposed once the lens has been removed and therefore highly susceptible to damage from fingers and dust.
by TrustedReviews (Oct, 2011)


Prospective buyers of an interchangeable lens camera expect significant improvements in both features and image quality, and while the Q's photos certainly aren't bad by compact camera standards, they don't match up to even the new Nikon One system, which has the smallest sensor of any CSC range.
by Photography Blog (Oct, 2011)
Noise is fairly well controlled by the Pentax Q, at least for the JPG files, starting to appear at ISO 400 and becoming more easily detectable at the faster settings of ISO 800 and 1600 when viewing images at 100% magnification on screen.
by Photography Blog (Oct, 2011)
Raw capture is standard among other interchangeable lens cameras, and it enables experienced users to make the most of their images.
by TechRadar (Nov, 2011)

Image quality

Under close examination, detail can be seen to have softened, but noise is kept largely at bay, with overall image quality remaining high enough to view and/or print at larger sizes that would usually be the case.
by TrustedReviews (Oct, 2011)
But at least in all the BSI cameras we've seen, the image quality has been great for inexpensive to midprice point and shoots.
by c|net (Jun, 2011)
Compact-like image quality and a sky-high price tag, however, combine to seriously detract from what is otherwise a surprisingly well built and enjoyable camera.
by Photography Blog (Oct, 2011)


Overall, the Pentax Q is a very well appointed little camera that offers a generous feature set and plenty of scope for customisation.
by TrustedReviews (Oct, 2011)
Levels of detail are good when compared to other compact cameras.
by TechRadar (Nov, 2011)
With a camera body around the same size as a pack of playing cards, Pentax seems to be attempting to carve a new niche with this little camera.
by TechRadar (Nov, 2011)


The Pentax Q also features Full 1080p HD movie recording, sensor-shift Shake Reduction mechanism, dust removal system, cleverly designed built-in pop-up flash, external flash hotshoe, 5fps continuous shooting, a 3 inch LCD monitor, ISO range of 125-6400, full range of automatic and manual shooting modes, RAW support, in-camera High Dynamic Range and an extensive range of Digital Effects.
by Photography Blog (Oct, 2011)
As this 100% crop shows the Pentax Q delivers noise-free images at ISO 125.
by TrustedReviews (Oct, 2011)
The RAW samples illustrate just how much processing the camera does by default, as they're much noisier at all ISO values than their JPEG counterparts.
by Photography Blog (Oct, 2011)

Specifications Full list of technical specs


Megapixels 12.7 MP
Resolution 4120 x 3088
Size 1/2.5"
Area 6.17 x 4.55 mm
Crop factor 5.8x
Pixel size 2.2 microns
Light sensitivity 125 ISO to 6,400 ISO
  1. RAW
  2. JPEG
Tested vertical resolution 2,000 LPH
Tested horizontal resolution 2,000 LPH

focus system

Type Contrast detection
Focus points 25
Supports continuous No


Viewfinder mirror None
Viewfinder None


Max continuous shooting 5 fps
Battery life 230 photos
Continuous shooting 5 fps, JPEG
Focus lag 706 ms
Shutter lag 82 ms
Startup delay 3,700 ms


Video 1920 x 1080 @ 30 fps
Shoots video in 24p No
Shoots high speed video No
External mic jack None
Autofocus while shooting video Contrast detection
Autofocus type Contrast detection


Type LCD
Size 3"
Resolution 360 k dots
Has a touch screen No
Has a flip out screen No
Supports live view Yes


Min 30 s
Max 1/8000 s

form factor

Size 98 x 57 x 31 mm
Thickness 31 mm
Weight 200 g
Is weather sealed No


Is a smart camera No
Includes a GPS No
Supports HDR Yes
Automatic panorama No
Create realistic 3D images No
Image stabilization Sensor shift
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