Pentax K-01 Digital Camera Review$899.95
The K-01 offers color accuracy that is above average, but not too far above. We recorded a minimum error value of 2.76, with very minor oversaturation (less than 4%). Errors are spread out evenly across the gamut, with just as many problems in the yellows as there are in the reds, or greens, or blues. None of the errors are particularly severe, there's just a lot of them. More on how we test color.
NOTE: Because of the way computer monitors reproduce colors, the images above do not exactly match the originals found on the chart or in the captured images. The chart should be used to judge the relative color shift, not the absolute captured colors.
This is the best score of our comparison group, which represents a few different cameras in this price range and class. Color scores are also very slightly better than the Pentax K-5, which earned a decent score last year. Other mirrorless cameras, like the Sony NEX-5N and the Nikon J1, lag behind, and so does the fixed-lens Canon G1 X.
11 color modes are available from the "Custom Image" setting on the main menu. Aside from the basics like Vibrant and Muted, a few more interesting ones have also been included. Radiant is like Vibrant but emphasizes yellows and blues. Cross Processing mixes up color channels deliberately, and may even be set to random.
The Natural mode is aptly named, because it is the most accurate one. We used this setting for all remaining tests.
White balance accuracy was strong overall, but fell victim to the same trends we almost always see: poor results under incandescent light, better in all other lighting conditions.
Automatic White Balance ()
Using the automatic white balance system, color temperature was off by more than 1500 Kelvin under incandescent tungsten light. This is highly inaccurate, though still consistent with this camera's peers. Under fluorescent and daylight, these errors drop to 220 and 175 Kelvin respectively on average.
Custom White Balance ()
Custom white balance, as it always does, produced the most accurate color temperature settings. Incandescent light becomes more accurate than any source would've been if using automatic white balance: off by only 95 Kelvin. Daylight is only 35 degrees too cool, and fluorescent light produced the most accurate scores of all, off by only 15 Kelvin.
These scores won't ruin any shots, but they are the worst in our group of similar cameras. Strangely, the scores are worse than the year-old K-5, along with many other mirrorless cameras.
White Balance Options
White balance settings get their own button, down on the directional pad, allowing the user to select from one of ten color temperature presets, including four different varieties of fluorescent, one for the built-in flash, and one for custom temperature enhancement. All presets, as well as automatic and custom settings, are compatible with color shift, which is simple to adjust and features a realtime preview. Setting a custom white balance, and can be performed with only two buttons presses.