Ur-Leica Contax Camera Comparison
Leica 1600mm Soligor Exif data
A potelyt.com – Photography & Imaging Resources
ad
PW

Pentax K-30 vs K-70

The Pentax K-30 and the Pentax K-70 are two digital cameras that were revealed to the public, respectively, in May 2012 and June 2016. Both are DSLR (Digital Single Lens Reflex) cameras that are equipped with an APS-C sensor. The K-30 has a resolution of 16.1 megapixels, whereas the K-70 provides 24 MP.

Below is an overview of the main specs of the two cameras as a starting point for the comparison.

Headline Specifications
Pentax K-30 versus Pentax K-70
Pentax K-30 Pentax K-70
Digital single lens reflex Digital single lens reflex
Pentax K mount lenses Pentax K mount lenses
16.1 MP, APS-C Sensor 24 MP, APS-C Sensor
1080/30p Video 1080/60i Video
ISO 100-12,800 (100 - 25,600) ISO 100-102,400
Optical viewfinder Optical viewfinder
3.0 LCD, 921k dots 3.0 LCD, 921k dots
Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive) Swivel screen (not touch-sensitive)
6 shutter flaps per second 6 shutter flaps per second
In-body stabilizationIn-body stabilization
Weathersealed bodyWeathersealed body
410 shots per battery charge410 shots per battery charge
130 x 97 x 71 mm, 650 g 126 x 93 x 74 mm, 688 g

Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Pentax K-30 and the Pentax K-70? Which one should you buy? Read on to find out how these two cameras compare with respect to their body size, their imaging sensors, their shooting features, their input-output connections, and their reception by expert reviewers.

Body comparison

The side-by-side display below illustrates the physical size and weight of the Pentax K-30 and the Pentax K-70. The two cameras are presented according to their relative size. Three successive views from the front, the top, and the rear are shown. All size dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter.

The K-30 can be obtained in seven different colors (black, silver, blue, red, yellow, green, white), while the K-70 is available in two color-versions (black, silver).

Size Pentax K-30 vs Pentax K-70
Compare K-30 versus K-70 top
Comparison K-30 or K-70 rear

If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Pentax K-70 is notably smaller (7 percent) than the Pentax K-30. However, the K-70 is markedly heavier (6 percent) than the K-30. In this context, it is worth noting that both cameras are splash and dust-proof and can, hence, be used in inclement weather conditions or harsh environments.

The above size and weight comparisons are to some extent incomplete since they do not consider the interchangeable lenses that both of these cameras require. Hence, you might want to study and compare the specifications of available lenses in order to get the full picture of the size and weight of the two camera systems.

The following table provides a synthesis of the main physical specifications of the two cameras and other similar ones. In case you want to display and compare another camera duo, you can use the CAM-parator app to select your camera combination among a large number of options.

scroll hint
Body Specifications
    Camera
Model
Camera
Width
Camera
Height
Camera
Depth
Camera
Weight
Battery
Life
Weather
Sealing
Camera
Launch
Launch
Price (USD)
Street
Price
1.
 
Pentax K-30 130 mm 97 mm 71 mm 650 g 410 Y May 2012 849i
2.
 
Pentax K-70 126 mm 93 mm 74 mm 688 g 410 Y Jun 2016 649 i
3.
 
Pentax KP 132 mm 101 mm 76 mm 703 g 390 Y Jan 2017 1,099 i
4.
 
Pentax K-S2 123 mm 91 mm 73 mm 678 g 410 Y Feb 2015 749 i
5.
 
Pentax K-3 II 131 mm 100 mm 77 mm 800 g 720 Y Apr 2015 1,099 i
6.
 
Pentax K-S1 121 mm 93 mm 70 mm 558 g 410 n Aug 2014 749i
7.
 
Pentax K-50 130 mm 97 mm 71 mm 650 g 410 Y Jun 2013 599i
8.
 
Pentax K-500 130 mm 97 mm 71 mm 646 g 710 n Jun 2013 549i
9.
 
Pentax K-3 131 mm 100 mm 77 mm 800 g 560 Y Oct 2013 1,299i
10.
 
Pentax K-5 II 131 mm 97 mm 73 mm 760 g 740 Y Sep 2012 1,099i
11.
 
Pentax K-5 131 mm 97 mm 73 mm 760 g 740 Y Sep 2010 1,099i
12.
 
Sony A77 143 mm 104 mm 81 mm 732 g 470 Y Aug 2011 1,399i
Notes: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as add-on or interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.

The price is, of course, an important factor in any camera decision. The manufacturer’s suggested retail prices give an idea on the placement of the camera in the maker’s lineup and the broader market. The K-70 was launched at a somewhat lower price (by 24 percent) than the K-30, which makes it more attractive for photographers on a tight budget. Usually, retail prices stay at first close to the launch price, but after several months, discounts become available. Later in the product cycle and, in particular, when the replacement model is about to appear, further discounting and stock clearance sales often push the camera price considerably down.

ad

Sensor comparison

The imaging sensor is at the core of digital cameras and its size is one of the main determining factors of image quality. All other things equal, a large sensor will have larger individual pixel-units that offer better low-light sensitivity, wider dynamic range, and richer color-depth than smaller pixels in a sensor of the same technological generation. Further, a large sensor camera will give the photographer additional creative options when using shallow depth-of-field to isolate a subject from its background. On the downside, larger sensors tend to be more expensive and lead to bigger and heavier cameras and lenses.

Both cameras under consideration feature an APS-C sensor, but their sensors differ slightly in size. The sensor area in the K-70 is 1 percent smaller. They nevertheless have the same format factor of 1.5. Both cameras have a native aspect ratio (sensor width to sensor height) of 3:2.

Technology-wise, both cameras are equipped with CMOS (Complementary Metal–Oxide–Semiconductor) sensors.

Pentax K-30 and Pentax K-70 sensor measures

Despite having a slightly smaller sensor, the K-70 offers a higher resolution of 24 megapixels, compared with 16.1 MP of the K-30. This megapixels advantage comes at the cost of a higher pixel density and a smaller size of the individual pixel (with a pixel pitch of 3.91μm versus 4.79μm for the K-30). However, it should be noted that the K-70 is much more recent (by 4 years) than the K-30, and its sensor will have benefitted from technological advances during this time that make it possible to gather light more efficiently. Coming back to sensor resolution, it should be mentioned that the K-70 has no anti-alias filter installed, so that it can capture all the detail its sensor resolves.

The resolution advantage of the Pentax K-70 implies greater flexibility for cropping images or the possibility to print larger pictures. The maximum print size of the K-70 for good quality output (200 dots per inch) amounts to 30 x 20 inches or 76.2 x 50.8 cm, for very good quality (250 dpi) 24 x 16 inches or 61 x 40.6 cm, and for excellent quality (300 dpi) 20 x 13.3 inches or 50.8 x 33.9 cm. The corresponding values for the Pentax K-30 are 24.6 x 16.3 inches or 62.6 x 41.5 cm for good quality, 19.7 x 13.1 inches or 50.1 x 33.2 cm for very good quality, and 16.4 x 10.9 inches or 41.7 x 27.6 cm for excellent quality prints.

The K-70 has on-sensor phase detect pixels, which results in fast and reliable autofocus acquisition even during live view operation.

Unlike the K-30, the K-70 has the capacity to capture high quality composite images by combining multiple shots after shifting its sensor by miniscule distances. This multi-shot, pixel-shift mode is most suitable for photography of stationary objects (landscapes, studio scenes).

The Pentax K-30 has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 12800, which can be extended to ISO 100-25600. The corresponding ISO settings for the Pentax K-70 are ISO 100 to ISO 102400 (no boost).

K-30 versus K-70 MP

Consistent information on actual sensor performance is available from DXO Mark for many cameras. This service determines an overall sensor rating, as well as sub-scores for low-light sensitivity ("DXO Sports"), dynamic range ("DXO Landscape"), and color depth ("DXO Portrait"). The adjacent table reports on the physical sensor characteristics and the outcomes of the DXO sensor quality tests for a sample of comparator-cameras.

scroll hint
Sensor Characteristics
    Camera
Model
Sensor
Class
Resolution
(MP)
Horiz.
Pixels
Vert.
Pixels
Video
Format
DXO
Portrait
DXO
Landscape
DXO
Sports
DXO
Overall
1.
 
Pentax K-30 APS-C 16.1 4928 32641080/30p23.713.0112979
2.
 
Pentax K-70 APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60i........
3.
 
Pentax KP APS-C 24.1 6016 40001080/60i........
4.
 
Pentax K-S2 APS-C 20.0 5472 36481080/30p........
5.
 
Pentax K-3 II APS-C 24.1 6016 40001080/60i23.613.6110680
6.
 
Pentax K-S1 APS-C 20.0 5472 36481080/30p23.513.0106178
7.
 
Pentax K-50 APS-C 16.1 4928 32641080/30p23.713.0112079
8.
 
Pentax K-500 APS-C 16.1 4928 32641080/30p23.713.1108779
9.
 
Pentax K-3 APS-C 24.1 6016 40001080/60i23.713.4121680
10.
 
Pentax K-5 II APS-C 16.1 4928 32641080/25p23.814.1123582
11.
 
Pentax K-5 APS-C 16.1 4928 32641080/25p23.714.1116282
12.
 
Sony A77 APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p24.013.280178

Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but also of capturing video footage. Both cameras under consideration are equipped with sensors that have a sufficiently high read-out speed for moving images, but the K-70 provides a faster frame rate than the K-30. It can shoot movie footage at 1080/60i, while the K-30 is limited to 1080/30p.

ad

Feature comparison

Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a variety of features. The K-30 and the K-70 are similar in the sense that both have an optical viewfinder. The latter is useful for getting a clear image for framing even in brightly lit environments. The viewfinders of both cameras offer the same field of view (100%), but the viewfinder of the K-70 has a higher magnification than the one of the K-30 (0.63x vs 0.61x), so that the size of the image transmitted appears closer to the size seen with the naked human eye. The adjacent table lists some of the other core features of the Pentax K-30 and Pentax K-70 along with similar information for a selection of comparators.

scroll hint
Core Features
    Camera
Model
Viewfinder
(Type or
000 dots)
Control
Panel
(yes/no)
LCD
Size
(inch)
LCD
Resolution
(000 dots)
LCD
Attach-
ment
Touch
Screen
(yes/no)
Mech
Shutter
Speed
Shutter
Flaps
(1/sec)
Built-in
Flash
(yes/no)
Built-in
Image
Stab
1.
 
Pentax K-30optical n 3.0 921 fixed n 1/6000s 6.0 Y Y
2.
 
Pentax K-70optical n 3.0 921 swivel n 1/6000s 6.0 Y Y
3.
 
Pentax KPoptical n 3.0 921 tilting n 1/6000s 7.0 Y Y
4.
 
Pentax K-S2optical n 3.0 921 swivel n 1/6000s 5.4 Y Y
5.
 
Pentax K-3 IIoptical Y 3.2 1037 fixed n 1/8000s 8.3 n Y
6.
 
Pentax K-S1optical n 3.0 921 fixed n 1/6000s 5.4 Y Y
7.
 
Pentax K-50optical n 3.0 921 fixed n 1/6000s 6.0 Y Y
8.
 
Pentax K-500optical n 3.0 921 fixed n 1/6000s 6.0 Y Y
9.
 
Pentax K-3optical Y 3.2 1037 fixed n 1/8000s 8.3 Y Y
10.
 
Pentax K-5 IIoptical Y 3.0 921 fixed n 1/8000s 7.0 Y Y
11.
 
Pentax K-5optical Y 3.0 921 fixed n 1/8000s 7.0 Y Y
12.
 
Sony A772359 Y 3.0 921 full-flex n 1/8000s 12.0 Y Y
The K-70 has an articulated screen that can be turned to be front-facing. This characteristic will be appreciated by vloggers and photographers who are interested in taking selfies. In contrast, the K-30 does not have a selfie-screen.

The Pentax K-70 has an intervalometer built-in. This enables the photographer to capture time lapse sequences, such as flower blooming, a sunset or moon rise, without purchasing an external camera trigger and related software.

Concerning the storage of imaging data, both the K-30 and the K-70 write their files to SDXC cards. The K-70 supports UHS-I cards (Ultra High Speed data transfer of up to 104 MB/s), while the K-30 cannot take advantage of Ultra High Speed SD cards.

ad

Connectivity comparison

For some imaging applications, the extent to which a camera can communicate with its environment can be an important aspect in the camera decision process. The table below provides an overview of the connectivity of the Pentax K-30 and Pentax K-70 and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.

scroll hint
Input-Output Connections
    Camera
Model
Hotshoe
Port
Internal
Microphone
Internal
Speaker
Microphone
Port
Headphone
Port
HDMI
Port
USB
Port
WiFi
Support
NFC
Support
Bluetooth
Support
1.
 
Pentax K-30Ymonomono---2.0---
2.
 
Pentax K-70YstereomonoY-mini2.0Y--
3.
 
Pentax KPYstereomonoY--2.0Y--
4.
 
Pentax K-S2YmonomonoY-micro2.0YY-
5.
 
Pentax K-3 IIYmonomonoYYmini3.0---
6.
 
Pentax K-S1Ystereomono--micro2.0---
7.
 
Pentax K-50Ymonomono--micro2.0---
8.
 
Pentax K-500Ymonomono---2.0---
9.
 
Pentax K-3YmonomonoYYmini3.0---
10.
 
Pentax K-5 IIYstereomonoY-mini2.0---
11.
 
Pentax K-5YstereomonoY-mini2.0---
12.
 
Sony A77YstereomonoY-mini2.0---

It is notable that the K-70 offers wifi support, which can be a very convenient means to transfer image data to an off-camera location. In contrast, the K-30 does not provide wifi capability.

The K-70 is a recent model that features in the current product line-up of Pentax. In contrast, the K-30 has been discontinued (but can be found pre-owned on eBay). As a replacement in the same line of cameras, the K-30 was succeeded by the Pentax K-50. Further information on the two cameras (e.g. user guides, manuals), as well as related accessories, can be found on the official Pentax website.

ad

Review summary

So what conclusions can be drawn? Is the Pentax K-30 better than the Pentax K-70 or vice versa? The listing below highlights the relative strengths of the two models.


Advantages of the Pentax K-30:

  • Better moiré control: Has an anti-alias filter to avoid artificial patterns to appear in images.
  • More heavily discounted: Has been available for much longer (launched in May 2012).


Arguments in favor of the Pentax K-70:

  • More detail: Has more megapixels (24 vs 16.1MP), which boosts linear resolution by 22%.
  • Maximized detail: Lacks an anti-alias filter to exploit the sensor's full resolution potential.
  • High quality composites: Can combine several shots after pixel-shifting its sensor.
  • Better video: Provides higher movie framerates (1080/60i versus 1080/30p).
  • Better live-view autofocus: Features on-sensor phase-detection for more confident autofocus.
  • Better sound: Can connect to an external microphone for higher quality sound recording.
  • Larger viewfinder image: Features a viewfinder with a higher magnification (0.63x vs 0.61x).
  • More flexible LCD: Has a swivel screen for odd-angle shots in portrait or landscape orientation.
  • More selfie-friendly: Has an articulated screen that can be turned to be front-facing.
  • Easier time-lapse photography: Has an intervalometer built-in for low frequency shooting.
  • Easier file upload: Has wifi built in for automatic backup or image transfer to the web.
  • Faster buffer clearing: Has an SD card interface that supports the UHS-I standard.
  • More affordable: Was released into a lower priced segment (24 percent cheaper at launch).
  • More modern: Reflects 4 years of technical progress since the K-30 launch.

If the number of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the K-70 is the clear winner of the contest (14 : 2 points). However, the pertinence of the various camera strengths will differ across photographers, so that you might want to weigh individual camera traits according to their importance for your own imaging needs before making a camera decision. A professional wedding photographer will view the differences between cameras in a way that diverges from the perspective of a travel photog, and a person interested in cityscapes has distinct needs from a macro shooter. Hence, the decision which camera is best and worth buying is often a very personal one.

K-30 02:14 K-70

How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Pentax K-30 and the Pentax K-70 place the cameras among the top in their class? Find out in the latest Best DSLR Camera listing whether the two cameras rank among the cream of the crop.

In any case, while the comparison of the spec-sheets of cameras can offer a general idea of their imaging potential, it says little about, for example, the shooting experience and imaging performance of the K-30 and the K-70 in practical situations. At times, user reviews, such as those published at amazon, address these issues in a useful manner, but such feedback is on many occasions incomplete, inconsistent, and unreliable.

Expert reviews

This is why expert reviews are important. The table below provides a synthesis of the camera assessments of some of the best known photo-gear review sites (amateurphotographer [AP], cameralabs [CL], dpreview [DPR], ephotozine [EPZ], photographyblog [PB]). As can be seen, the professional reviewers agree in many cases on the quality of different cameras, but sometimes their assessments diverge, reinforcing the earlier point that a camera decision is often a very personal choice.

scroll hint
Expert Camera Reviews
     Camera 
 Model 
 AP 
 score 
 CL 
 score 
 DPR 
 score 
 EPZ 
 score 
 PB 
 score 
Camera
Launch
Launch
Price (USD)
Street
Price
1.
 
Pentax K-304/5..78/1004.5/54.5/5 May 2012 849i
2.
 
Pentax K-704.5/5..79/1004.5/54.5/5 Jun 2016 649 i
3.
 
Pentax KP4/5..82/1005/54.5/5 Jan 2017 1,099 i
4.
 
Pentax K-S24.5/5....5/54.5/5 Feb 2015 749 i
5.
 
Pentax K-3 II4.5/5....5/55/5 Apr 2015 1,099 i
6.
 
Pentax K-S14/5....4.5/54/5 Aug 2014 749i
7.
 
Pentax K-505/5....5/54.5/5 Jun 2013 599i
8.
 
Pentax K-500......4.5/54.5/5 Jun 2013 549i
9.
 
Pentax K-34/5..83/1005/55/5 Oct 2013 1,299i
10.
 
Pentax K-5 II5/5..80/1005/54.5/5 Sep 2012 1,099i
11.
 
Pentax K-54/5..83/1005/54.5/5 Sep 2010 1,099i
12.
 
Sony A775/591/10081/100..5/5 Aug 2011 1,399i
Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (..) not available.

Care should be taken when interpreting the review scores above, though. The ratings were established in reference to similarly priced cameras that were available in the market at the time of the review. Thus, a score needs to be put into the context of the launch date and the launch price of the camera, and rating-comparisons among cameras that span long time periods or concern very differently equipped models make little sense. Also, please note that some of the review sites have changed their methodology and reporting over time.

Pentax K-30:
Check Ebay offers
Pentax K-70:
Check Amazon price

Other camera comparisons

Did this review help to inform your camera decision process? If you would like to see a different side-by-side camera review, just use the search menu below. There is also a set of direct links to comparison reviews that other users of the CAM-parator app explored.

~
    loader

    Specifications: Pentax K-30 vs Pentax K-70

    Below is a side-by-side comparison of the specs of the two cameras to facilitate a quick review of their differences and common features.

    Camera Specifications
    Camera Model Pentax K-30 Pentax K-70
    Camera Type Digital single lens reflex Digital single lens reflex
    Camera Lens Pentax K mount lenses Pentax K mount lenses
    Launch Date May 2012 June 2016
    Launch Price USD 849 USD 649
    Sensor Specs Pentax K-30 Pentax K-70
    Sensor Technology CMOS CMOS
    Sensor Format APS-C Sensor APS-C Sensor
    Sensor Size 23.7 x 15.6 mm 23.5 x 15.6 mm
    Sensor Area 369.72 mm2 366.6 mm2
    Sensor Diagonal 28.4 mm 28.2 mm
    Crop Factor 1.5x 1.5x
    Sensor Resolution 16.1 Megapixels 24 Megapixels
    Image Resolution 4928 x 3264 pixels 6000 x 4000 pixels
    Pixel Pitch 4.79 μm 3.91 μm
    Pixel Density 4.35 MP/cm2 6.55 MP/cm2
    Moiré control Anti-Alias filter no AA filter
    Movie Capability 1080/30p Video 1080/60i Video
    ISO Setting 100 - 12,800 ISO 100 - 102,400 ISO
    ISO Boost 100 - 25,600 ISO no Enhancement
    Image Processor PRIME M PRIME MII
    DXO Sensor Quality (score) 79 ..
    DXO Color Depth (bits) 23.7 ..
    DXO Dynamic Range (EV) 13.0 ..
    DXO Low Light (ISO) 1129 ..
    Screen Specs Pentax K-30 Pentax K-70
    Viewfinder Type Optical viewfinder Optical viewfinder
    Viewfinder Field of View 100% 100%
    Viewfinder Magnification 0.61x 0.63x
    LCD Framing Live View Live View
    Rear LCD Size 3.0inch 3.0inch
    LCD Resolution 921k dots 921k dots
    LCD Attachment Fixed screen Swivel screen
    Shooting Specs Pentax K-30 Pentax K-70
    Focus System Phase-detect AF Phase-detect AF
    Manual Focusing AidFocus PeakingFocus Peaking
    Max Shutter Speed (mechanical) 1/6000s 1/6000s
    Continuous Shooting 6 shutter flaps/s 6 shutter flaps/s
    Time-Lapse Photographyno IntervalometerIntervalometer built-in
    Image StabilizationIn-body stabilizationIn-body stabilization
    Fill Flash Build-in Flash Build-in Flash
    Storage Medium SDXC cards SDXC cards
    Second Storage Option Single card slot Single card slot
    UHS card support no UHS-I
    Connectivity Specs Pentax K-30 Pentax K-70
    External Flash Hotshoe Hotshoe
    USB Connector USB 2.0 USB 2.0
    HDMI Port no HDMI mini HDMI
    Microphone Port no MIC socket External MIC port
    Wifi Support no Wifi Wifi built-in
    Body Specs Pentax K-30 Pentax K-70
    Environmental SealingWeathersealed bodyWeathersealed body
    Battery Type D-LI109 D-LI109
    Battery Life (CIPA)410 shots per charge410 shots per charge
    Body Dimensions 130 x 97 x 71 mm
    (5.1 x 3.8 x 2.8 in)
    126 x 93 x 74 mm
    (5.0 x 3.7 x 2.9 in)
    Camera Weight 650 g (22.9 oz) 688 g (24.3 oz)

    Did you notice an error on this page? If so, please get in touch, so that we can correct the information.

    You are here Home  »  CAM-parator  »  Pentax K-30 vs Pentax K-70

    Thanks for your vote!

    You rated this page 4 out of 5.


    Rating

    Any additional comment or suggestion for improvement would be welcome.


    If you like it, make sure you share it:

    • Mention this page to your Facebook friends and Twitter followers.
    • Bookmark it in your browser for future reference by pressing "Crtl" + "D".
    • Create a hyperlink by copying the text below into your web-project or discussion forum entry.

    Once again, thanks for taking the time to provide feedback. I appreciate it.