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Pentax K-70 vs K-5

The Pentax K-70 and the Pentax K-5 are two digital cameras that were officially introduced, respectively, in June 2016 and September 2010. Both are DSLR (Digital Single Lens Reflex) cameras that are equipped with an APS-C sensor. The K-70 has a resolution of 24 megapixels, whereas the K-5 provides 16.1 MP. Read on to find out how these two cameras compare with respect to their body size, their sensors, their features, their input-output connections, and their reception by expert reviewers.

Headline Specifications
Pentax K-70   Pentax K-5
Pentax K-70 Pentax K-5
Digital single lens reflex Digital single lens reflex
Pentax K mount lenses Pentax K mount lenses
24 MP, APS-C Sensor 16.1 MP, APS-C Sensor
1080/60i Video 1080/25p Video
ISO 100-102400 ISO 100-12800 (80-51200)
Optical viewfinder Optical viewfinder
3.0" LCD, 921k dots 3.0" LCD, 921k dots
Swivel screen (not touch-sensitive) Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive)
6 shutter flaps per second 7 shutter flaps per second
In-body stabilizationIn-body stabilization
Weathersealed bodyWeathersealed body
410 shots per battery charge740 shots per battery charge
126 x 93 x 74 mm, 688 g 131 x 97 x 73 mm, 760 g

Body comparison: Pentax K-70 vs K-5

An illustration of the physical size and weight of the Pentax K-70 and the Pentax K-5 is provided in the side-by-side display below. The two cameras are presented according to their relative size. Three consecutive views from the front, the top, and the rear side are shown. All size dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter.

The K-70 can be obtained in two different colors (black, silver), while the K-5 is only available in black.

Compare Pentax K-70 and Pentax K-5
Compare K-70 versus K-5 top
Compare K-70 or K-5 rear

If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Pentax K-5 is notably larger (8 percent) than the Pentax K-70. Moreover, the K-5 is markedly heavier (10 percent) than the K-70. 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.

Concerning battery life, the K-70 gets 410 shots out of its D-LI109 battery, while the K-5 can take 740 images on a single charge of its D-LI90 power pack.

The table below summarizes the key physical specs of the two cameras alongside a broader set of comparators. If you would like to visualize and compare a different camera combination, just use the right or left arrows in the table to switch to the respective camera. Alternatively, you can also navigate to the CAM-parator app and make your selection from the full list of cameras there.

Camera Body Specifications
  Camera
Model
Camera
Width
Camera
Height
Camera
Depth
Camera
Weight
Battery
Life
(CIPA)
Weather
Sealing
(yes/no)
Camera
Launch
(announced)
Launch
Price
(USD)
Street
Price
(USD)
Used
Price
(USD)
Camera
Model
 
Pentax K-70» 5.0 in 3.7 in 2.9 in 24.3 oz 410 Y Jun 2016 649 i i Pentax K-70
 
Pentax K-5« 5.2 in 3.8 in 2.9 in 26.8 oz 740 Y Sep 2010 1,099- i Pentax K-5
 
Fujifilm X-H1« » 5.5 in 3.8 in 3.4 in 23.7 oz 310 Y Feb 2018 1,899 i i Fujifilm X-H1
 
Nikon D7500« » 5.4 in 4.1 in 2.9 in 25.4 oz 950 Y Apr 2017 1,299 i i Nikon D7500
 
Olympus E-M1 II« » 5.3 in 3.6 in 2.6 in 20.2 oz 440 Y Sep 2016 1,999 i i Olympus E-M1 II
 
Olympus E-M5 II« » 4.9 in 3.3 in 1.8 in 16.5 oz 310 Y Feb 2015 1,099 i i Olympus E-M5 II
 
Panasonic G9« » 5.4 in 3.8 in 3.6 in 23.2 oz 400 Y Nov 2017 1,699 i i Panasonic G9
 
Panasonic GH5« » 5.5 in 3.9 in 3.4 in 25.6 oz 410 Y Jan 2017 1,999 i i Panasonic GH5
 
Pentax KP« » 5.2 in 4.0 in 3.0 in 24.8 oz 390 Y Jan 2017 1,099 i i Pentax KP
 
Pentax K-3 II« » 5.2 in 3.9 in 3.0 in 28.2 oz 720 Y Apr 2015 1,099 i i Pentax K-3 II
 
Pentax K-3« » 5.2 in 3.9 in 3.0 in 28.2 oz 560 Y Oct 2013 1,299- i Pentax K-3
 
Sony A9« » 5.0 in 3.8 in 2.5 in 23.7 oz 650 Y Apr 2017 4,499 i i Sony A9
 
Sony A6500« » 4.7 in 2.6 in 2.1 in 16.0 oz 350 Y Oct 2016 1,399 i i Sony A6500

Any camera decision will naturally be influenced heavily by the price. The listed launch prices provide an indication of the market segment that the manufacturer of the cameras have been targeting. The K-70 was launched at a markedly lower price (by 41 percent) than the K-5, which puts it into a different market segment. Normally, street prices remain initially close to the MSRP, but after a couple of months, the first discounts appear. 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.

 

Sensor comparison: Pentax K-70 vs K-5

The size of the imaging sensor is a crucial determinant of image quality. A large sensor will generally have larger individual pixels that offer better low-light sensitivity, provide wider dynamic range, and have richer color-depth than smaller pixels in a sensor of the same technological generation. Furthermore, a large sensor camera will give the photographer more possibilities to use shallow depth-of-field in order to isolate a subject from the background. On the downside, larger sensors are more costly to manufacture and tend to 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-5 is 1 percent bigger. 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.

Pentax K-70 and Pentax K-5 sensor measures

Despite having a slightly smaller sensor, the Pentax K-70 offers a higher resolution of 24 megapixels, compared with 16.1 MP of the Pentax K-5. 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 4.81μm for the K-5). However, it should be noted that the K-70 is much more recent (by 5 years and 8 months) than the K-5, 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 K-70 has on-sensor phase detect pixels, which results in fast and reliable autofocus acquisition even during video recording.

Unlike the K-5, 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-70 has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 102400 The corresponding ISO settings for the Pentax K-5 are ISO 100 to ISO 12800, with the possibility to increase the ISO range to 80-51200..

K-70 versus K-5 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.

Sensor Characteristics
  Camera
Model
Sensor
Class
Resolution
(MP)
Horiz.
Pixels
Vert.
Pixels
Video
Format
DXO
Portrait
DXO
Landscape
DXO
Sports
DXO
Overall
Camera
Model
 
Pentax K-70» APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60i----Pentax K-70
 
Pentax K-5« APS-C 16.1 4928 32641080/25p23.714.1116282Pentax K-5
 
Fujifilm X-H1« » APS-C 24.0 6000 40004K/30p----Fujifilm X-H1
 
Nikon D7500« » APS-C 20.7 5568 37124K/30p24.314.0148386Nikon D7500
 
Olympus E-M1 II« » Four Thirds 20.2 5184 38884K/30p23.712.8131280Olympus E-M1 II
 
Olympus E-M5 II« » Four Thirds 15.9 4608 34561080/60p23.012.584273Olympus E-M5 II
 
Panasonic G9« » Four Thirds 20.2 5184 38884K/60p----Panasonic G9
 
Panasonic GH5« » Four Thirds 20.2 5184 38884K/60p23.913.080777Panasonic GH5
 
Pentax KP« » APS-C 24.1 6016 40001080/60i----Pentax KP
 
Pentax K-3 II« » APS-C 24.1 6016 40001080/60i23.613.6110680Pentax K-3 II
 
Pentax K-3« » APS-C 24.1 6016 40001080/60i23.713.4121680Pentax K-3
 
Sony A9« » Full Frame 24.0 6000 40004K/30p24.913.3351792Sony A9
 
Sony A6500« » APS-C 24.0 6000 40004K/30p24.513.7140585Sony A6500

Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but also of capturing video footage. Both cameras under consideration have a sensor with sufficiently fast read-out times for moving pictures, but the K-70 provides a higher frame rate than the K-5. It can shoot video footage at 1080/60i, while the K-5 is limited to 1080/25p.

 

Feature comparison: Pentax K-70 vs K-5

Beyond body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. The K-70 and the K-5 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-5 (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-70 and Pentax K-5 along with similar information for a selection of comparators.

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
Camera
Model
 
Pentax K-70»optical n 3.0 921 swivel n 1/6000s 6.0 Y Y Pentax K-70
 
Pentax K-5«optical Y 3.0 921 fixed n 1/8000s 7.0 Y Y Pentax K-5
 
Fujifilm X-H1« »3690 Y 3.0 1040 full-flex Y 1/8000s 14.0 n Y Fujifilm X-H1
 
Nikon D7500« »optical Y 3.2 922 tilting Y 1/8000s 8.0 Y n Nikon D7500
 
Olympus E-M1 II« »2360 n 3.0 1037 swivel Y 1/8000s 18.0 n Y Olympus E-M1 II
 
Olympus E-M5 II« »2360 n 3.0 1037 swivel Y 1/8000s 10.0 n Y Olympus E-M5 II
 
Panasonic G9« »3680 Y 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/8000s 20.0 n Y Panasonic G9
 
Panasonic GH5« »3680 n 3.2 1620 swivel Y 1/8000s 12.0 n Y Panasonic GH5
 
Pentax KP« »optical n 3.0 921 tilting n 1/6000s 7.0 Y Y Pentax KP
 
Pentax K-3 II« »optical Y 3.2 1037 fixed n 1/8000s 8.3 n Y Pentax K-3 II
 
Pentax K-3« »optical Y 3.2 1037 fixed n 1/8000s 8.3 Y Y Pentax K-3
 
Sony A9« »3686 n 3.0 1440 tilting Y 1/8000s 20.0 n Y Sony A9
 
Sony A6500« »2359 n 3.0 922 tilting Y 1/4000s 11.0 Y Y Sony A6500

One feature that is present on the K-5, but is missing on the K-70 is a top-level LCD. While being, of course, smaller than the rear screen, the control panel conveys some of the essential shooting information and can be convenient for quick and easy settings verification.

The K-70 has an articulated LCD that can be turned to be front-facing. This characteristic will be appreciated by vloggers and photographers who are interested in snapping selfies. In contrast, the K-5 does not have a selfie-screen.

The Pentax K-70 and the Pentax K-5 both have 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-70 and the K-5 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-5 cannot take advantage of Ultra High Speed SD cards.

 

Connectivity comparison: Pentax K-70 vs K-5

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-70 and Pentax K-5 and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.

Input-Output Connections
  Camera
Model
Hotshoe
Port
Internal
Microphone
Internal
Speaker
Microphone
Port
Headphone
Port
HDMI
Port
USB
Type
WiFi
Support
NFC
Support
Bluetooth
Support
Camera
Model
 
Pentax K-70»YstereomonoY-mini2.0Y--Pentax K-70
 
Pentax K-5«YstereomonoY-mini2.0---Pentax K-5
 
Fujifilm X-H1« »YstereomonoY-micro3.0Y--Fujifilm X-H1
 
Nikon D7500« »YstereomonoYYmini2.0Y-YNikon D7500
 
Olympus E-M1 II« »YstereomonoYYmicro3.0Y--Olympus E-M1 II
 
Olympus E-M5 II« »YstereomonoY-micro2.0Y--Olympus E-M5 II
 
Panasonic G9« »YstereomonoYYfull3.0Y-YPanasonic G9
 
Panasonic GH5« »YstereomonoYYfull3.1Y-YPanasonic GH5
 
Pentax KP« »YstereomonoY--2.0Y--Pentax KP
 
Pentax K-3 II« »YmonomonoYYmini3.0---Pentax K-3 II
 
Pentax K-3« »YmonomonoYYmini3.0---Pentax K-3
 
Sony A9« »YstereomonoYYmicro2.0YYYSony A9
 
Sony A6500« »YstereomonoY-micro2.0YY-Sony A6500

It is notable that the K-70 offers wifi support, while the K-5 does not. Wifi can be a very convenient means to transfer image data to an off-camera location.

Studio photographers will appreciate that the Pentax K-5 (unlike the K-70) features a PC Sync socket, so that professional strobe lights can be controlled by the camera.

The K-70 is a recent model that features in the current product line-up of Pentax. In contrast, the K-5 has been discontinued (but it can be found pre-owned on eBay). As a replacement in the same line of cameras, the K-5 was succeeded by the Pentax K-5 II. Further information on the two cameras, as well as related accessories, can be found on the official Pentax website.


Review summary: Pentax K-70 vs K-5

So what conclusions can be drawn? Is there a clear favorite between the Pentax K-70 and the Pentax K-5? Below is a summary of the relative strengths of each of the two contestants.


Advantages of the Pentax K-70:

  • More detail: Offers more megapixels (24 vs 16.1MP) with a 22% higher linear resolution.
  • 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 1080/25p).
  • Better video autofocus: Features on-sensor phase-detection for more confident movie autofocus.
  • Larger viewfinder image: Features a viewfinder with a higher magnification (0.63x vs 0.61x).
  • More flexible LCD: Has 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 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 introduced into a lower priced category (41 percent cheaper at launch).
  • More modern: Reflects 5 years and 8 months of technical progress since the K-5 launch.


Arguments in favor of the Pentax K-5:

  • Better moiré control: Has an anti-alias filter to avoid artificial patterns to appear in images.
  • Easier setting verification: Features a control panel on top to check shooting parameters.
  • Faster shutter: Has higher mechanical shutter speed (1/8000s vs 1/6000s) to freeze action.
  • Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (7 vs 6 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
  • Longer lasting: Gets more shots (740 versus 410) out of a single battery charge.
  • Better studio light control: Has a PC Sync socket to connect to professional strobe lights.
  • More heavily discounted: Has been around for much longer (launched in September 2010).

If the number of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the K-70 is the clear winner of the match-up (12 : 7 points). However, the relevance of individual strengths will vary across photographers, so that you might want to apply your own weighing scheme to the summary points when reflecting and deciding on a new camera.

K-70 12:07 K-5

Do the specifications of the Pentax K-70 and the Pentax K-5 place the cameras among the top in their class? Find out in the latest Best DSLR Camera listing.

In any case, while the comparison of technical specifications can provide a useful overview of the capabilities of different cameras, it remains incomplete and does no justice, for example, to the way the K-70 or the K-5 perform in practice. 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: Pentax K-70 vs K-5

This is where reviews by experts come in. The adjacent summary-table relays the overall verdicts of several of the most popular camera review sites (cameralabs, dpreview, ephotozine, imaging-resource, photographyblog).

Review Scores
  Camera
Model
cameralabs dpreview ephotozine imaging-resource photographyblog Camera
Launch
(announced)
Launch
Price
(USD)
Street
Price
(USD)
Used
Price
(USD)
Camera
Model
 
Pentax K-70»-79/1004.5/54/54.5/5 Jun 2016 649 i i Pentax K-70
 
Pentax K-5«-83/1005/54.5/54.5/5 Sep 2010 1,099- i Pentax K-5
 
Fujifilm X-H1« »+86/1004.5/5-4.5/5 Feb 2018 1,899 i i Fujifilm X-H1
 
Nikon D7500« »++86/1005/54.5/54.5/5 Apr 2017 1,299 i i Nikon D7500
 
Olympus E-M1 II« »++85/1004.5/55/54.5/5 Sep 2016 1,999 i i Olympus E-M1 II
 
Olympus E-M5 II« »++81/1005/54.5/55/5 Feb 2015 1,099 i i Olympus E-M5 II
 
Panasonic G9« »++85/1005/55/55/5 Nov 2017 1,699 i i Panasonic G9
 
Panasonic GH5« »++85/1004.5/55/55/5 Jan 2017 1,999 i i Panasonic GH5
 
Pentax KP« »-82/1005/5-4.5/5 Jan 2017 1,099 i i Pentax KP
 
Pentax K-3 II« »--5/54.5/55/5 Apr 2015 1,099 i i Pentax K-3 II
 
Pentax K-3« »-83/1005/54.5/55/5 Oct 2013 1,299- i Pentax K-3
 
Sony A9« »++89/1005/55/55/5 Apr 2017 4,499 i i Sony A9
 
Sony A6500« »++85/1004.5/55/54.5/5 Oct 2016 1,399 i i Sony A6500
Notes: ++) highly recommended; +) recommended; o) reviewed; -) not available.

The above review scores should be interpreted with care, though. The ratings are only valid when referring to cameras in the same category and of the same age. A score, therefore, has to be seen in close connection to the price and market introduction time 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-70:
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Pentax K-5:
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Other camera comparisons

Did this review help to inform your camera decision process? In case you are interested in seeing how other cameras pair up, just make your choice using the following search menu. An an alternative, you can also directly jump to any one of the listed comparisons that were previously generated by the CAM-parator tool.

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    Specifications: Pentax K-70 vs Pentax K-5

    Camera Specifications
    Camera Model Pentax K-70 Pentax K-5
    Camera Type Digital single lens reflex Digital single lens reflex
    Camera Lens Pentax K mount lenses Pentax K mount lenses
    Launch Date June 2016 September 2010
    Launch Price USD 649 USD 1099
    Sensor Specs Pentax K-70 Pentax K-5
    Sensor Technology CMOS CMOS
    Sensor Format APS-C Sensor APS-C Sensor
    Sensor Size 23.5 x 15.6 mm 23.7 x 15.7 mm
    Sensor Area 366.6 mm2 372.09 mm2
    Sensor Diagonal 28.2 mm 28.4 mm
    Crop Factor 1.5x 1.5x
    Sensor Resolution 24 Megapixels 16.1 Megapixels
    Image Resolution 6000 x 4000 pixels 4928 x 3264 pixels
    Pixel Pitch 3.91 μm 4.81 μm
    Pixel Density 6.55 MP/cm2 4.32 MP/cm2
    Moiré control no AA filter Anti-Alias filter
    Movie Capability 1080/60i Video 1080/25p Video
    ISO Setting 100-102400 ISO 100-12800 ISO
    ISO Boost no Enhancement 80-51200 ISO
    Image Processor PRIME MII PRIME II
    DXO Sensor Quality (score) .. 82
    DXO Color Depth (bits) .. 23.7
    DXO Dynamic Range (EV) .. 14.1
    DXO Low Light (ISO) .. 1162
    Screen Specs Pentax K-70 Pentax K-5
    Viewfinder Type Optical viewfinder Optical viewfinder
    Viewfinder Field of View 100% 100%
    Viewfinder Magnification 0.63x 0.61x
    Top-Level Screen no Top Display Control Panel
    LCD Framing Live View Live View
    Rear LCD Size 3.0 inch 3.0 inch
    LCD Resolution 921k dots 921k dots
    LCD Attachment Swivel screen Fixed screen
    Shooting Specs Pentax K-70 Pentax K-5
    Autofocus System Phase-detect AF Phase-detect AF
    Manual Focusing AidFocus PeakingNo Peaking Feature
    Continuous Shooting 6 shutter flaps/s 7 shutter flaps/s
    Shutter Life Expectancy100 000 actuations100 000 actuations
    Time-Lapse PhotographyIntervalometer built-inIntervalometer 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 UHS-I no
    Connectivity Specs Pentax K-70 Pentax K-5
    External Flash Hotshoe Hotshoe
    Studio Flash no PC Sync PC Sync socket
    USB Connector USB 2.0 USB 2.0
    HDMI Port mini HDMI mini HDMI
    Microphone Port External MIC port External MIC port
    Wifi Support Wifi built-in no Wifi
    Body Specs Pentax K-70 Pentax K-5
    Environmental SealingWeathersealed bodyWeathersealed body
    Battery Type D-LI109 power pack D-LI90 power pack
    Battery Life (CIPA)410 shots per charge740 shots per charge
    Body Dimensions 126 x 93 x 74 mm
    (5.0 x 3.7 x 2.9 in)
    131 x 97 x 73 mm
    (5.2 x 3.8 x 2.9 in)
    Camera Weight 688 g (24.3 oz) 760 g (26.8 oz)

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