Pentax KP vs Nikon Df
The Pentax KP and the Nikon Df are two enthusiast cameras that were revealed to the public, respectively, in January 2017 and November 2013. Both are DSLR (Digital Single Lens Reflex) cameras that are based on an APS-C (KP) and a full frame (Df) sensor. The Pentax has a resolution of 24.1 megapixels, whereas the Nikon provides 16.2 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.
|Pentax KP||Nikon Df|
|Digital single lens reflex||Digital single lens reflex|
|Pentax K mount lenses||Nikon F mount lenses|
|24.1 MP, APS-C Sensor||16.2 MP, Full Frame Sensor|
|1080/60i Video||no Video|
|ISO 100-819200||ISO 100-12800 (50-204800)|
|Optical viewfinder||Optical viewfinder|
|3.0" LCD, 921k dots||3.2" LCD, 921k dots|
|Tilting screen (no touchscreen)||Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive)|
|7 shutter flaps per second||5.5 shutter flaps per second|
|In-body stabilization||Lens stabilization only|
|Weathersealed body||Weathersealed body|
|390 shots per battery charge||1400 shots per battery charge|
|132 x 101 x 76 mm, 703 g||144 x 110 x 67 mm, 760 g|
Body comparison: Pentax KP vs Nikon Df
An illustration of the physical size and weight of the Pentax KP and the Nikon Df is provided in the side-by-side display below. 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. You can also use the toggle button to switch to a percentage comparison if you prefer that the measures are being expressed in relative terms (in this case, the camera on the left – the KP – represents 100 percent across all the size and weight measures).
If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Nikon Df is notably larger (19 percent) than the Pentax KP. Moreover, the Df is markedly heavier (8 percent) than the KP. 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, just click on the right or left arrow next to the camera that you would like to inspect. Alternatively, you can also use the CAM-parator to select your camera combination among a larger number of options.
|Pentax KP»||5.2 in||4.0 in||3.0 in||24.8 oz||390||Y||Jan 2017||1,099||Pentax KP|
|Nikon Df«||5.7 in||4.3 in||2.6 in||26.8 oz||1400||Y||Nov 2013||2,749||Nikon Df|
|Canon 80D« »||5.5 in||4.1 in||3.1 in||25.8 oz||960||Y||Feb 2016||1,199||Canon 80D|
|Fujifilm X-H1« »||5.5 in||3.8 in||3.4 in||23.7 oz||310||Y||Feb 2018||1,899||Fujifilm X-H1|
|Nikon D7500« »||5.4 in||4.1 in||2.9 in||25.4 oz||950||Y||Apr 2017||1,299||Nikon D7500|
|Nikon D4S« »||6.3 in||6.2 in||3.6 in||47.6 oz||3020||Y||Feb 2014||6,499||-||Nikon D4S|
|Nikon D750« »||5.6 in||4.4 in||3.1 in||26.5 oz||1230||Y||Sep 2014||2,299||Nikon D750|
|Nikon D810« »||5.7 in||4.8 in||3.2 in||34.6 oz||1200||Y||Jun 2014||3,299||-||Nikon D810|
|Nikon D610« »||5.6 in||4.4 in||3.2 in||30.0 oz||900||Y||Oct 2013||1,999||Nikon D610|
|Nikon D4« »||6.3 in||6.2 in||3.6 in||47.3 oz||2600||Y||Jan 2012||5,999||-||Nikon D4|
|Panasonic GH5« »||5.5 in||3.9 in||3.4 in||25.6 oz||410||Y||Jan 2017||1,999||Panasonic GH5|
|Pentax K-70« »||5.0 in||3.7 in||2.9 in||24.3 oz||410||Y||Jun 2016||649||Pentax K-70|
|Pentax K-3 II« »||5.2 in||3.9 in||3.0 in||28.2 oz||720||Y||Apr 2015||1,099||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||-||Pentax K-3|
|Pentax K-5« »||5.2 in||3.8 in||2.9 in||26.8 oz||740||Y||Sep 2010||1,099||-||Pentax K-5|
|Sony A9« »||5.0 in||3.8 in||2.5 in||23.7 oz||650||Y||Apr 2017||4,499||Sony A9|
|Sony A77 II« »||5.6 in||4.1 in||3.2 in||22.8 oz||480||Y||May 2014||1,199||Sony A77 II|
Any camera decision will naturally be influenced heavily by the price. The retail prices at the time of the camera’s release place the model in the market relative to other models in the producer’s line-up and the competition. The KP was launched at a markedly lower price (by 60 percent) than the Df, which puts it into a different market segment. 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.
Sensor comparison: Pentax KP vs Nikon Df
The imaging sensor is at the core of digital cameras and its size is one of the main determining factors 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. Moreover, a large sensor camera will give the photographer more control over depth-of-field in the image and, thus, the ability to better isolate a subject from the background. On the downside, larger sensors tend to be more expensive and lead to bigger and heavier cameras and lenses.
Of the two cameras under consideration, the Pentax KP features an APS-C sensor and the Nikon Df a full frame sensor. The sensor area in the Df is 134 percent bigger. As a result of these sensor size differences, the cameras have a format factor of, respectively, 1.5 and 1.0. 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.
Despite having a smaller sensor, the Pentax KP offers a higher resolution of 24.1 megapixels, compared with 16.2 MP of the Nikon Df. 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 3.90μm versus 7.29μm for the Df). However, it should be noted that the KP is much more recent (by 3 years and 2 months) than the Df, 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 KP has no anti-alias filter installed, so that it can capture all the detail its sensor resolves.
Unlike the Df, the KP 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 KP has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 819200 The corresponding ISO settings for the Nikon Df are ISO 100 to ISO 12800, with the possibility to increase the ISO range to 50-204800..
Since 2007, DXO Mark has published sensor performance measurements that have been derived using a consistent methodology. 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 following table provides an overview of the physical sensor characteristics, as well as the sensor quality measurements for a selection of comparators.
|Pentax KP»||APS-C||24.1||6016||4000||1080/60i||-||-||-||-||Pentax KP|
|Nikon Df«||Full Frame||16.2||4928||3280||-||24.6||13.1||3279||89||Nikon Df|
|Canon 80D« »||APS-C||24.0||6000||4000||1080/60p||23.6||13.2||1135||79||Canon 80D|
|Fujifilm X-H1« »||APS-C||24.0||6000||4000||4K/30p||-||-||-||-||Fujifilm X-H1|
|Nikon D7500« »||APS-C||20.7||5568||3712||4K/30p||24.3||14.0||1483||86||Nikon D7500|
|Nikon D4S« »||Full Frame||16.2||4928||3280||1080/60p||24.4||13.3||3074||89||Nikon D4S|
|Nikon D750« »||Full Frame||24.2||6016||4016||1080/60p||24.8||14.5||2956||93||Nikon D750|
|Nikon D810« »||Full Frame||36.2||7360||4912||1080/60p||25.7||14.8||2853||97||Nikon D810|
|Nikon D610« »||Full Frame||24.2||6016||4016||1080/30p||25.1||14.4||2925||94||Nikon D610|
|Nikon D4« »||Full Frame||16.2||4928||3280||1080/30p||24.7||13.1||2965||89||Nikon D4|
|Panasonic GH5« »||Four Thirds||20.2||5184||3888||4K/60p||23.9||13.0||807||77||Panasonic GH5|
|Pentax K-70« »||APS-C||24.0||6000||4000||1080/60i||-||-||-||-||Pentax K-70|
|Pentax K-3 II« »||APS-C||24.1||6016||4000||1080/60i||23.6||13.6||1106||80||Pentax K-3 II|
|Pentax K-3« »||APS-C||24.1||6016||4000||1080/60i||23.7||13.4||1216||80||Pentax K-3|
|Pentax K-5« »||APS-C||16.1||4928||3264||1080/25p||23.7||14.1||1162||82||Pentax K-5|
|Sony A9« »||Full Frame||24.0||6000||4000||4K/30p||24.9||13.3||3517||92||Sony A9|
|Sony A77 II« »||APS-C||24.0||6000||4000||1080/60p||-||-||-||-||Sony A77 II|
Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but can also record movies. The KP indeed provides movie recording capabilities, while the Df does not. The highest resolution format that the KP can use is 1080/60i.
Feature comparison: Pentax KP vs Nikon Df
Beyond body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. The KP and the Df 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 adjacent table lists some of the other core features of the Pentax KP and Nikon Df along with similar information for a selection of comparators.
|Pentax KP»||optical||n||3.0||921||tilting||n||6000||7.0||Y||Y||Pentax KP|
|Nikon Df«||optical||Y||3.2||921||fixed||n||4000||5.5||n||n||Nikon Df|
|Canon 80D« »||optical||Y||3.0||1040||swivel||Y||8000||7.0||Y||n||Canon 80D|
|Fujifilm X-H1« »||3690||Y||3.0||1040||full-flex||Y||8000||14.0||n||Y||Fujifilm X-H1|
|Nikon D7500« »||optical||Y||3.2||922||tilting||Y||8000||8.0||Y||n||Nikon D7500|
|Nikon D4S« »||optical||Y||3.2||921||fixed||n||8000||11.0||n||n||Nikon D4S|
|Nikon D750« »||optical||Y||3.2||1229||tilting||n||4000||6.0||Y||n||Nikon D750|
|Nikon D810« »||optical||Y||3.2||1229||fixed||n||8000||5.0||Y||n||Nikon D810|
|Nikon D610« »||optical||Y||3.2||921||fixed||n||4000||6.0||Y||n||Nikon D610|
|Nikon D4« »||optical||Y||3.2||921||fixed||n||8000||11.0||n||n||Nikon D4|
|Panasonic GH5« »||3680||n||3.2||1620||swivel||Y||8000||12.0||n||Y||Panasonic GH5|
|Pentax K-70« »||optical||n||3.0||921||swivel||n||6000||6.0||Y||Y||Pentax K-70|
|Pentax K-3 II« »||optical||Y||3.2||1037||fixed||n||8000||8.3||n||Y||Pentax K-3 II|
|Pentax K-3« »||optical||Y||3.2||1037||fixed||n||8000||8.3||Y||Y||Pentax K-3|
|Pentax K-5« »||optical||Y||3.0||921||fixed||n||8000||7.0||Y||Y||Pentax K-5|
|Sony A9« »||3686||n||3.0||1440||tilting||Y||8000||20.0||n||Y||Sony A9|
|Sony A77 II« »||2359||Y||3.0||1229||full-flex||n||8000||12.0||Y||Y||Sony A77 II|
One difference between the cameras concerns the presence of an on-board flash. The KP has one, while the Df does not. While the built-in flash of the KP is not very powerful, it can at times be useful as a fill-in light.
The reported shutter speed and shutter burst refer to the use of the mechanical shutter. In addition, the KP features an electronic shutter, which makes completely silent shooting possible. However, this mode is less suitable for photographing moving objects (risk of rolling shutter) or shooting under artificial light sources (risk of flickering).
Concerning the storage of imaging data, both the KP and the Df write their files to SDXC cards.
Connectivity comparison: Pentax KP vs Nikon Df
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 KP and Nikon Df and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.
|Pentax KP»||Y||stereo||mono||Y||-||-||2.0||Y||-||-||Pentax KP|
|Nikon Df«||Y||-||-||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-||Nikon Df|
|Canon 80D« »||Y||stereo||mono||Y||Y||mini||2.0||Y||Y||-||Canon 80D|
|Fujifilm X-H1« »||Y||stereo||mono||Y||-||micro||3.0||Y||-||-||Fujifilm X-H1|
|Nikon D7500« »||Y||stereo||mono||Y||Y||mini||2.0||Y||-||Y||Nikon D7500|
|Nikon D4S« »||Y||mono||mono||Y||Y||mini||2.0||-||-||-||Nikon D4S|
|Nikon D750« »||Y||stereo||mono||Y||Y||mini||2.0||Y||-||-||Nikon D750|
|Nikon D810« »||Y||stereo||mono||Y||Y||mini||3.0||Y||-||-||Nikon D810|
|Nikon D610« »||Y||mono||mono||Y||Y||mini||2.0||-||-||-||Nikon D610|
|Nikon D4« »||Y||mono||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||-||-||-||Nikon D4|
|Panasonic GH5« »||Y||stereo||mono||Y||Y||full||3.1||Y||-||Y||Panasonic GH5|
|Pentax K-70« »||Y||stereo||mono||Y||-||mini||2.0||Y||-||-||Pentax K-70|
|Pentax K-3 II« »||Y||mono||mono||Y||Y||mini||3.0||-||-||-||Pentax K-3 II|
|Pentax K-3« »||Y||mono||mono||Y||Y||mini||3.0||-||-||-||Pentax K-3|
|Pentax K-5« »||Y||stereo||mono||Y||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-||Pentax K-5|
|Sony A9« »||Y||stereo||mono||Y||Y||micro||2.0||Y||Y||Y||Sony A9|
|Sony A77 II« »||Y||stereo||mono||Y||-||mini||2.0||Y||Y||-||Sony A77 II|
It is notable that the KP offers wifi support, while the Df does not. Wifi can be a very convenient means to transfer image data to an off-camera location.
Both the KP and the Df are recent models that feature in their makers' current product line-up. Neither of the two has a direct predecessor, so perhaps they will constitute the origins of new camera lines for Pentax and Nikon.
Review summary: Pentax KP vs Nikon Df
So what is the bottom line? Which of the two cameras – the Pentax KP or the Nikon Df – has the upper hand? Below is a summary of the relative strengths of each of the two contestants.
Advantages of the Pentax KP:
- More detail: Offers more megapixels (24.1 vs 16.2MP) 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.
- Broader imaging potential: Can record not only still images but also 1080/60i movies.
- More flexible LCD: Has a tilting screen for odd-angle shots in landscape orientation.
- Faster shutter: Has higher mechanical shutter speed (6000/sec vs 4000/sec) to freeze action.
- Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (7 vs 5.5 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
- Less disturbing: Has an electronic shutter option for completely silent shooting.
- More compact: Is smaller (132x101mm vs 144x110mm) and thus needs less room in the bag.
- Sharper images: Has hand-shake reducing image stabilization built-in.
- Easier fill-in: Is equipped with a small onboard flash to brighten deep shadow areas.
- Easier file upload: Has wifi built in for automatic backup or image transfer to the web.
- More affordable: Was introduced into a lower priced category (60 percent cheaper at launch).
- More modern: Reflects 3 years and 2 months of technical progress since the Df launch.
Arguments in favor of the Nikon Df:
- 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.
- Larger screen: Has a bigger rear LCD (3.2" vs 3.0") for image review and settings control.
- Longer lasting: Gets more shots (1400 versus 390) out of a single battery charge.
- More heavily discounted: Has been around for much longer (launched in November 2013).
If the count of individual advantages (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the KP is the clear winner of the match-up (14 : 5 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.
In any case, while the comparison of the spec-sheets of cameras can offer a general idea of their imaging potential, it remains incomplete and does no justice, for example, to the way the KP or the Df handle or 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 KP vs Nikon Df
This is where reviews by experts come in. The table below summarizes the assessments of some of the best known camera review sites (cameralabs, dpreview, ephotozine, imaging-resource, photographyblog). The full reviews are available by clicking on the site logo in the table header.
|Pentax KP»||-||82/100||5/5||-||4.5/5||Jan 2017||1,099||Pentax KP|
|Nikon Df«||-||81/100||4/5||4/5||4/5||Nov 2013||2,749||Nikon Df|
|Canon 80D« »||HiRec||84/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||Feb 2016||1,199||Canon 80D|
|Fujifilm X-H1« »||Rec||86/100||4.5/5||-||4.5/5||Feb 2018||1,899||Fujifilm X-H1|
|Nikon D7500« »||HiRec||86/100||5/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||Apr 2017||1,299||Nikon D7500|
|Nikon D4S« »||-||-||4.5/5||5/5||4.5/5||Feb 2014||6,499||-||Nikon D4S|
|Nikon D750« »||HiRec||90/100||4.5/5||5/5||4.5/5||Sep 2014||2,299||Nikon D750|
|Nikon D810« »||-||86/100||5/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||Jun 2014||3,299||-||Nikon D810|
|Nikon D610« »||HiRec||87/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||Oct 2013||1,999||Nikon D610|
|Nikon D4« »||-||-||4.5/5||-||4.5/5||Jan 2012||5,999||-||Nikon D4|
|Panasonic GH5« »||HiRec||85/100||4.5/5||5/5||5/5||Jan 2017||1,999||Panasonic GH5|
|Pentax K-70« »||-||79/100||4.5/5||4/5||4.5/5||Jun 2016||649||Pentax K-70|
|Pentax K-3 II« »||-||-||5/5||4.5/5||5/5||Apr 2015||1,099||Pentax K-3 II|
|Pentax K-3« »||-||83/100||5/5||4.5/5||5/5||Oct 2013||1,299||-||Pentax K-3|
|Pentax K-5« »||-||83/100||5/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||Sep 2010||1,099||-||Pentax K-5|
|Sony A9« »||HiRec||89/100||5/5||5/5||5/5||Apr 2017||4,499||Sony A9|
|Sony A77 II« »||-||80/100||4.5/5||4/5||5/5||May 2014||1,199||Sony A77 II|
Care should be taken when interpreting the review scores above, though. The assessments were made in relation to similar cameras of the same technological generation. 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, kindly note that some of the listed sites have over time developped their review approaches and their reporting style.
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 a corresponding selection in the search boxes below. There is also a set of direct links to comparison reviews that other users of the CAM-parator app explored.
- Canon 1300D vs Leica S Typ 007
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- Canon 200D vs Olympus E-PL8
- Canon 4000D vs Sony RX100 III
- Canon 600D vs Sony A7R III
- Canon D30 vs Leica X Typ 113
- Nikon D3200 vs Canon T6s
- Nikon D3300 vs Canon T5
- Olympus E-M5 II vs Nikon D750
- Panasonic GF6 vs Panasonic GX1
- Panasonic GX80 vs Fujifilm X-T3
- Panasonic TZ200 vs Sony HX95
Specifications: Pentax KP vs Nikon Df
|Camera Model||Pentax KP||Nikon Df|
|Camera Type||Digital single lens reflex||Digital single lens reflex|
|Camera Lens||Pentax K mount lenses||Nikon F mount lenses|
|Launch Date||January 2017||November 2013|
|Launch Price||USD 1099||USD 2749|
|Sensor Format||APS-C Sensor||Full Frame Sensor|
|Sensor Size||23.5 x 15.6 mm||36.0 x 15.6 mm|
|Sensor Area||366.6 mm2||860.4 mm2|
|Sensor Diagonal||28.2 mm||43.2 mm|
|Sensor Resolution||24.1 Megapixels||16.2 Megapixels|
|Image Resolution||6016 x 4000 pixels||4928 x 3280 pixels|
|Pixel Pitch||3.90 μm||7.29 μm|
|Pixel Density||6.56 MP/cm2||1.88 MP/cm2|
|Movie Capability||1080/60i Video||no Video|
|ISO Setting||100-819200 ISO||100-12800 ISO|
|ISO Boost||no Enhancement||50-204800 ISO|
|Image Processor||PRIME IV||EXPEED 3|
|Viewfinder Type||Optical viewfinder||Optical viewfinder|
|Top-Level Screen||no Top Display||Control Panel|
|Rear LCD Size||3.0 inch||3.2 inch|
|LCD Resolution||921k dots||921k dots|
|LCD Attachment||Tilting screen||Fixed screen|
|Maximum Shutter Speed||1/6000s||1/4000s|
|Continuous Shooting||7 shutter flaps/s||5.5 shutter flaps/s|
|Silent Shooting||Electronic Shutter||no E-Shutter|
|Image Stabilization||In-body stabilization||Lens stabilization only|
|Fill Flash||Build-in Flash||no On-Board Flash|
|Storage Medium||SDXC cards||SDXC cards|
|USB Connector||USB 2.0||USB 2.0|
|HDMI Port||no HDMI||mini HDMI|
|Microphone Port||External MIC port||no MIC socket|
|Wifi Support||Wifi built-in||no Wifi|
|Environmental Sealing||Weathersealed body||Weathersealed body|
|Battery Type||D-LI109 power pack||EN-EL14 power pack|
|Battery Life (CIPA)||390 shots per charge||1400 shots per charge|
132 x 101 x 76 mm
(5.2 x 4.0 x 3.0 in)
144 x 110 x 67 mm
(5.7 x 4.3 x 2.6 in)
|Camera Weight||703 g (24.8 oz)||760 g (26.8 oz)|
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