PENTAX K-01 – First mirrorless camera that can use SLR lenses without an adapter

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PENTAX has announced the K-01, the first mirrorless digital camera that can use 25+ million PENTAX K-mount lenses without an adapter. The K-01 features 16MP, a 3″ LCD, HD 1080p Video, anti-shake, an ISO Range from 100 to 25600, In-Camera HDR and Focus Peaking Modes. It has a machined aluminum frame and offers a popup flash as well as a hotshoe for external flashes. It’s available in Black, White and Yellow and is priced at $749 for just the body, or $899 with an included 40mm lens. You can pre-order from B&H Photo (affiliate link).

I’ve been thinking about upgrading from my Canon G11. Maybe this is the one I should consider…

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13 thoughts on “PENTAX K-01 – First mirrorless camera that can use SLR lenses without an adapter”

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  2. I have a K-5, K20D and K10D and an arsenal of K-mount lenses. I’m eagerly looking forward to reviews of the K-01. It has the same sensor as in the K-5, which is a mighty sensitive creature, capturing a great swath of dynamic range.

    The K-01 is unique. All of my lenses will work with it, in a much smaller package.

    Is it for me? Unknown at this time. I will miss an eye level viewfinder. Perhaps a hot-shoe EV is among the accessories.

    Image quality should be first rate, but as to whether it’s for you, depends on you and your needs. The price is surely right, that’s a relief.

  3. @Matt I agree with you on the viewfinder. From comments in another forum, it appears that the hot-shoe does not support an EVF.

  4. @Julie Yes I know 😀 I wear glasses while shooting. I have developed a technique where I look above the frame while composing, . But you can get something like Hoodman’s PhotoFrames

    I sometimes use live view when shooting macro or/and when using a tripod. But for street photo I love the speed and stability of holding the camera close to my face and using the viewfinder.

    I’m very excited about this camera, and if the reviews are good I’ll probably order one. Event without a viewfinder.

  5. Seems like full size lenses would eliminate a lot of the size advantage, might as well use a compact digital SLR body. I think a better upgrade from a G11 is the G1-X.

    1. @Mark you’re probably right… Since I already have a Canon external flash. What I REALLY need to do is to take a class and learn the ins / outs of photography theory.

  6. Here’s a video of the K-01 near production model hands on. A chunky thing, but the sensor/processor along with all that great K-mount glass available, make it worth a look.

    As for the viewfinder. Many times, I find myself guesstimating the framing, looking for angles close to the ground or in the air, so I think I could get used to this. I have a Panasonic LX-3 which I love, and has no VF, so it’s something I know how to manage my composition without.

  7. No matter what camera, practice, practice, practice. has a lot of quick articles for knowledge gathering. is one of my favorites for learning. Their video tutorials are excellent and very affordable. Alex Koloskov is incredible and shares his knowledge.

    And on and on. Lots of web resources to gather knowledge out there.

  8. Julie, That’s sound thinking. Most people who buy high-end cameras never take them out of auto mode, in which case a more compact camera, like a Canon S100 will give very satisfactory results.

  9. Personally, I don’t understand this camera from Pentax.

    The whole point of the mirrorless revolution is to have smaller cameras, but the K-01 really is not much different in size to say the Pentax K-x (a smallish DSLR).,285

    Compared to the Sony NEX-5N, which has a similar sensor size, the K-01 looks huge.,285

    I learned a long time ago that my 35mm film bodies (all by Pentax, coincidentally) just stayed at home, because it was too much of a hassle to carry.

    The mirrorless revolution turned that around, and now I carry my Olympus E-PM1 with a low light lens in a jacket pocket. Not all the time (that’s what the iPhone 4S camera is for), but far more often than I ever carried my old film DSLRs.

  10. While we’re on recommendations, if you’re looking at expanding past using Auto mode on your camera one of the best books I’ve found is Mastering Exposure by Bryan Peterson ( which of course is available in ebook format but best viewed on a colour tablet of some sort than an e-ink device to get the most out of the example photos ) 🙂

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