Pentax unveils blue and white K-01 in Japan


Pentax Japan has unveiled a new colour variation of its Marc Newson-designed K-01 mirrorless camera, with a white body shell, blue grip covering, and black accents. There are no spec changes or updates compared to the existing K-01, which was announced early in 2012 and available in black, silver, or yellow. So the camera sports a 16MP APS-C CMOS sensor, in-body image stabilisation, 3″ 921k dot LCD, and the same K-mount as the company’s SLRs. It comes with the ultra-slim smc PENTAX-DA 40mm F2.8 XS pancake lens, and will go on sale in late July.

This comes as a slightly suprising move from Pentax – it’s fair to say the K-01’s unconventional looks and not-everyone’s-cup-of-tea ergonomics met with a distinctly mixed reception, and the camera had apparently been discontinued. Pentax’s press release suggests that its resurrection is due to continued customer demand in Japan – but at the moment it’s not clear whether the blue model will be available elsewhere.    

Pentax K-01 Specifications

MSRP US: $749, UK: £629, EU: €823
Body type
Body type SLR-style mirrorless
Body material Aluminium
Max resolution 4928 x 3264
Other resolutions 4352 x 3264, 4224 x 2816, 4928 x 2776, 4224 x 2376, 3840 x 2880, 3456 x 2304, 3456×1944, 3264 x 3264, 3072 x 2304, 2880 x 2880, 2688 x 1792, 2688 x 1512, 2304 x 2304, 2304 x 1728, 1728 x 1728
Image ratio w:h 1:1, 4:3, 3:2, 16:9
Effective pixels 16.3 megapixels
Sensor photo detectors 16.5 megapixels
Sensor size APS-C (23.7 x 15.7 mm)
Sensor type CMOS
Color space sRGB, Adobe RGB
Color filter array Primary color filter
ISO Auto, 100 to 12800 in 1, 1/2, or 1/3 EV steps (100 to 25600 extended)
White balance presets 9
Custom white balance Yes (1)
Image stabilization Sensor-shift
Uncompressed format RAW
JPEG quality levels Good, Better, Best
File format
  • JPEG v2.3
  • RAW
Optics & Focus
  • Contrast Detect (sensor)
  • Multi-area
  • Single
  • Continuous
  • Face Detection
  • Live View
Autofocus assist lamp Yes
Digital zoom No
Manual focus Yes
Number of focus points 81
Lens mount Pentax KAF2 mount
Focal length multiplier 1.5×
Screen / viewfinder
Articulated LCD Fixed
Screen size 3
Screen dots 921,000
Touch screen No
Screen type TFT LCD monitor
Live view Yes
Viewfinder type None
Photography features
Minimum shutter speed 30 sec
Maximum shutter speed 1/4000 sec
Exposure modes
  • Program
  • Aperture Priority
  • Shutter Priority
  • Manual
Scene modes
  • Portrait
  • Landscape
  • Macro
  • Moving Object
  • Night Scene Portrait
  • Sunset
  • Blue Sky
  • Forest
  • Night Scene
  • Night Scene HDR (JPG only)
  • Night Snap
  • Food
  • Pet
  • Kids
  • Surf & Snow
  • Backlight Silhouette
  • Candlelight
  • Stage Lighting
  • Museum
Built-in flash Yes (Pop-up)
Flash range 12 m (at ISO 100)
External flash Yes (Hot-shoe, P-TTL, high speed sync w Pentax dedicated flash)
Flash modes Auto, On, Off, Red-eye, Slow-speed Sync, Trailing Curtain Sync
Continuous drive Yes (6 fps)
Self-timer Yes (2 or 12 sec)
Metering modes
  • Multi
  • Center-weighted
  • Spot
Exposure compensation ±3 (at 1/2 EV steps)
AE Bracketing (3 frames at 1/2 EV steps)
WB Bracketing No
Videography features
  • MPEG-4
  • H.264
Microphone Stereo
Speaker Mono
Resolutions 1920 x 1080 (30, 25, 24 fps),1280 x 720 (60, 50, 30, 25, 24 fps), 640 x 480 (30, 25, 24 fps)
Storage types SD/SDHC/SDXC
Storage included No
USB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec)
HDMI Yes (Mini HDMI Type C)
Remote control Yes (Optional IR)
Environmentally sealed No
Battery Battery Pack
Battery description Lithium-Ion D-LI90 rechargeable battery & charger
Battery Life (CIPA) 540
Weight (inc. batteries) 561 g (1.24 lb / 19.79 oz)
Dimensions 122 x 79 x 58 mm (4.8 x 3.11 x 2.28)
Other features
Orientation sensor Yes
Timelapse recording Yes (1s to 24h, up to 999 shots, delayed start available)
GPS None




What a waste of resources. It looks like something from Star Trek.
Funny though how 30 years ago they were able to predict the feature so accurately.


I am worried about the direction that Ricoh is taking Pentax. Adding more colours does not enhance a camera. While I have many Pentax products (K5IIs, K30, K01, Q), the recent decisions have left me scratching my head. K50 and K500 with no new features, Q10 with multiple colours and now the K01 new colour. While Canon, Sony and others are advancing their tech (i.e. 70D), Pentax is releasing more colours? I hope it works out for them as I have lots invested in this system.


thanks god I lived enough to see this thing…


It’s great to see the K-01 is still in production. There was no reason to can it, really. In Japan, it certainly makes sense, as the camera has been quite popular there. I know lots of photojournos in Europe who will be happy to hear this.

I had a funny feeling the K-01 wasn’t killed off yet. Pentax UK still lists the K-01 as an active product. The K-01 just won a Gold Award, from the 2013 German Design Awards, despite the naysayers. I expect Pentax were happy to hear that.


In some markets the K-01 is no longer available. For example here in the US, shops like B&H list it as “discontinued”. Maybe with the blue one, they are trying to squeeze out that last bit of profits (assuming that it was profitable at all).


Hope they will launch K-02 soon with another body and with EVF


I’m hoping the same…


Another great tool that could prove useful in the war against street photography.


war against street photography 0_o?


Plastic counter-culture with a dollop of commercial cheese.

Alex Sarbu

Except the K-01 is not made from plastic; it’s high build quality (metal, with rubber covers here and there) is obvious to anyone who ever held one (and it seems you didn’t).


Pentax’s agony is becoming always more painful to witness…


We may poke fun of the colour but beneath that toyish look is one seriously good camera!

Cailean Gallimore

Kawaii neh?

Zvonimir Tosic

When I read most of the comments below, it’s like going back to Antiquity and Dark-ages — invaluable and hilarious! It’s something like reading commentaries on philosophy and humanities by Genserics and Odoacers.


I think the idea that the Vandals and Barbarians were a bunch of uncultured louts and hooligans is beginning to be turned on it’s head today. (If that aspect was your intended implication here 😉 )


This camera in my opinion as a concept will not die.


New color for old camera equals low cost excuse for a press release and free advertising?

Ian J G

It seems there is demand for that aesthetic in Japan (they have their own little ways over there you know), so they are selling to the consumer what he (she?) wants.
Better them than me on this one though…

Just for the record, for the right price (I got mine CHEAP, with lens), the K-01 is a great little camera however, especially for people with a collection of k-mount lenses.
And that 40mm lens is good. As to this colour scheme, well, I will guard my peace.

KL Matt

This really surprises me — I thought they were dropping the K-01 like a bad habit. Does releasing a new K-01 edition and all the effort that entails mean that Ricoh is commited to maintaining a K-mount mirrorless body in the lineup going forward? The plot thickens. I have no idea what they’re up to, but I like it!

Rod McD

Hi KLMatt – Bad habits are the ones that keep coming back 🙂 Like you and the rest of the Pentax Forum I thought production had ended but they’ve clearly made this edition in recent times. It’ll be interesting to see the availability (both region & duration) and the asking price….. Personally I hope Pentax do have another crack at the MILC market, but the K01’s not for me despite its excellent IQ.


If Adorama sells the body for $249.00 like they did in April, I’ll get another one.

KL Matt

Rod I’m still considering getting one to use as a second body when I want to shoot with two different primes (likely DA 15 + FA 31, 43, or 77) without having to change lenses or as a more compact kit than my K5 will allow. (K-01 permanently mated to my DA 15 or DA 21). At current prices, it’s difficult to resist!


Raist3d will claim it a masterpiece!


Mark my words – This camera will become a collectors item

KL Matt

Perhaps the K-01’s swan song, helping to clear out the parts inventory before end-of-life with a special edition, much like the silver editions of Pentax DSLRs often come a few months before a model is retired.


The colour says :

”You are a nerd and you better be proud of it.”

It also motivates people to try and guess the colour of your underwear.

jose vu

it looks ugly as hell, I feel like some cheap toy from China,
I know Pentax is a very good camera brand and they should make it look that way as well …


Ha ha ha ha ha ha ay yay yay… what are they thingking?


The VW beetle was ugly too – but it sold well.

tommy leong

the ONLY change being the colour ?



Mikhail Tal

simply beautiful… I wish they’d make it a U.S. model as well. I love those colors.

NZ Scott

Pawn to king’s bishop four.


Here’s hoping they’re working on a pink version!


simply disgusting…

M Jesper

still, the yellow one was worse.

Alex Sarbu

The yellow one was ugly only in pictures (IMO), in the real life it was quite OK.
I quite like this one, I’d like to see it; I wouldn’t buy it though.

Rupert Bottomsworth

I’m waiting for the lime green one before I buy one 😀

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