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29 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Little Gem, 12 Oct 2013
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This review is from: Pentax K-500 DSLR Camera with DAL 18-55mm Lens Kit - Black (16MP, CMOS APS-C Sensor) 3 inch LCD (Electronics)
I've always used Pentax SLR/DSLRs and have been using recently the K10D and the Samsung (Pentax based) GX20. It's fair to say that those 2 are very good top-of-the-range models of their era, but starting to look and feel a bit dated. I was simply browsing on Amazon at the current models when I found this up-to-date, but clearly entry-level K-500. But what hit me between the eyes was the amazingly low-price. As the K-500 seemed to be based on the K-50, with a couple of things missing, such as weather proofing, it seemed too good to miss out on - so it was ordered at the last-minute on the Express service.

Today, this came well before the 1pm deadline with helpful updates on both email and text from DPD as to my package's progress.

So far, I've configured the camera with some of my settings and shot a few basic tests. Although the K-500 has some control and menu differences from the older cameras I own, it was relatively easy to find out the features and settings that are the most important to me - even though on a couple of occasions I did resort to the manual (shocker!!!) The manual is nice and clear and it was very easy to find what I was looking for and so far haven't had any problems tuning the camera.

My initial tests are very encouraging and the camera is a lovely little gem of design and very positive to use. At this stage I wouldn't class any of the differences as downsides, more like progress that makes the camera neater and more compact. It would be interesting if any photographers with large chunky hands could pass on their own feedback.

I'll update this review once I have more meaningful shots to talk about, but so far, this entry-level camera is a total steal at £343 including the standard zoom - 5 stars!

OK then, having given the K-500 a proper run out, there's just 3 things that to me are less than ideal.

1. What a shame the battery isn't the same as the previous models. The new design is slimmer and lighter, but there would have been space for the previous version in the hand-grip. True, we can now use an AA adaptor for back-up batteries, but given Pentax users' brand loyalty a lot of us would already have had back-ups.

2. The camera and it's software don't seem to be able to auto-orientate shots taken in portrait (upright) mode, unlike previously. Not a big deal, but given it's obviously old technology now I assume it would have been cheap to include.

3. The Digital Preview button is now on the RAW button on the left of the lens mount, not on the shutter release switch. As I use this for metering purposes it's a bit fiddly to find whereas your shutter finger is already there on the previous models.

Now as I'm not in a position to be able to review ALL Pentax cameras it may well be that changes I've mentioned above are not new or unique to the K-500, but I won't be the only photographer who doesn't, or can't, upgrade every year.

On the upside though, what's improved over the last 5 years since I last bought a camera? I'm loving the faster and more accurate focussing, including the 'green spot' low-light aid, and the easy-access menu icons. Even though I rarely use the on-board flash, this is the only camera out of the 3 that I could possibly use, as it seems much more accurate. In general use, the camera just is more responsive and 'snappier'. The supplied RAW-converter software will still flatten your contrast and mess with your colours if you had a strong background (or shot in a studio). But if working with JPGs it's well worth using this now to tweak your images before using Photoshop/PaintShop Pro etc.. I find I'm using RAW/DNG a lot less now as the JPGs are so good and the camera seems better at dealing with strong images than the PC software is from RAW.

The bottom line though is image quality, and wow! The boffins certainly haven't been idle!!! My initial shots have a clarity, detail and colour, esp when run through the converter that is a major improvement. I've only upgraded slightly in the megapixel dept. from the GX20, but this is proof that MPs are not the end-of-the-story!

So in spite of the niggles I'm sticking with 5 stars as this is a cracking little camera for the money and the bottom line is image quality, and it's ace!! Anyone want a well-used GX20??
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great piece of kit, 27 May 2014
By 
Paul (Northampton) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Pentax K-500 DSLR Camera with DAL 18-55mm Lens Kit - Black (16MP, CMOS APS-C Sensor) 3 inch LCD (Electronics)
Finally I upgraded my old Pentax DSLR to something more up-to-date.

At first I had a lot of trouble getting it to work in 'AUTO' mode - it just didn't seem to work properly. But then I found a firmware update on the Pentax/Ricoh site, and now it's working fine.

Results so far have been impressive and I get positive feedback on my pictures. I know the camera is part of that success.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars You should buy it, 11 Jun 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Pentax K-500 DSLR Camera with DAL 18-55mm Lens Kit - Black (16MP, CMOS APS-C Sensor) 3 inch LCD (Electronics)
It's a well made camera, has all of the modern features. I've noticed it does sometimes think quite a lot before taking a photo, but nothing too extreme.

I would rate it 4.8/5
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent value, 26 Jun 2014
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This review is from: Pentax K-500 DSLR Camera with DAL 18-55mm Lens Kit - Black (16MP, CMOS APS-C Sensor) 3 inch LCD (Electronics)
I got this to replace a previous Pentax so I had lenses. Everything is better including the speed of turning on which is practically instantaneous. I also like the option of using AA lithium batteries although you do have to spen £12 on a bit of plastic adaptor!
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars After first use and with guidance from the excelent Handbook I found it easy to operate with good results., 18 Dec 2013
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This review is from: Pentax K-500 DSLR Camera with DAL 18-55mm Lens Kit - Black (16MP, CMOS APS-C Sensor) 3 inch LCD (Electronics)
After recently losing my previous compact Camera on holiday in USA I decided to go up a step to SLR and after some research chose the Pentax K500 DSLR. I am not an expert and use the camera for family, holiday and mostly 'water' shots from our sailing cruiser - so far I have not been disappointed. The handbook is excellent - one thing I cannot abide is voluminous instructions on a CD - and this compact book with everything cross referenced cannot be faulted. Due to the time of year full usage on the water will have to wait until next year when I anticipate good results.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Picfabulous, 17 Nov 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Pentax K-500 DSLR Camera with DAL 18-55mm Lens Kit - Black (16MP, CMOS APS-C Sensor) 3 inch LCD (Electronics)
Bought this as a gift for my husband. He loves it, also he can use his other lenses from previous camera.
Excellent results and easy to use. Good value for money.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best product from his category, 22 Feb 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Pentax K-500 DSLR Camera with DAL 18-55mm Lens Kit - Black (16MP, CMOS APS-C Sensor) 3 inch LCD (Electronics)
Better fps than a canon 600d (6fps vs. 3.7 fps). easy to handle, fab ISO, I tried with a 70-300 mm lens, it give fab photos, especially with a burst mode. I recommend it.
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9 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 35mm days remembered, 10 Jan 2014
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This review is from: Pentax K-500 DSLR Camera with DAL 18-55mm Lens Kit - Black (16MP, CMOS APS-C Sensor) 3 inch LCD (Electronics)
I HAVE HAD A PENTAX Kr for two years and remembered why I had more than one body in my 35mm. days and then saw this kit the K-500. Both kits had lenses DAL 18-55mm with K-500, and the K-r had two which included a DAL 50-200mm so with 2 short zooms and one longer one plus a SIGMA 18-200MM. plus 35mm 2.4 fixed lens which I tried with new K-500, what a surprise in quality that was, so if you buy a K-500 and can afford another lens get a prime lens of 35mm. I am not qualified to give a full review on either system but can say I'm more than satisfied with both systems and not being able to take them out in rain is not a problem I never could in 35mm days. .
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5.0 out of 5 stars amazing, 21 Sep 2014
This review is from: Pentax K-500 DSLR Camera with DAL 18-55mm Lens Kit - Black (16MP, CMOS APS-C Sensor) 3 inch LCD (Electronics)
This is a truly excellent camera great video amazing macro, and lots of other brilliant features
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5.0 out of 5 stars ... i don't have much experience but i am very happy with my purchase, 25 Sep 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Pentax K-500 DSLR Camera with DAL 18-55mm Lens Kit - Black (16MP, CMOS APS-C Sensor) 3 inch LCD (Electronics)
This is my first dslr so i don't have much experience but i am very happy with my purchase
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