Cameras Pentax

PENTAX K-3 Mark III APS-C DSLR to Be Launched February 2021


After keeping everyone in suspense, and apparently mulling over it seriously for a long time, Pentax has finally decided to name its new APS-C flagship DSLR… the K3 Mark III — the successor of, wait for it, the K3 Mark II. Pentax says that it firmly believes in the future of DSLRs, and while there are many photographers who are still currently using DSLRs, we cannot help but wonder if this will continue to be the case in a few years. Unwilling or unable to embrace ground-breaking mirrorless technology, Pentax seems to have settled for the collector’s game, putting out ever so slightly improved DSLRs every couple of years, and issuing limited edition of silver models.

As to their claim of reaching ISO 1.6M in the K3 Mark III, we’ll have to wait until February 2021 when the camera is officially launched to see what that high sensitivity claim really amounts to. We find this a bit hard to believe or take at face value, and since Pentax does not make a bit deal about it, we can only surmise it may be a feature where a number of long exposure photos are stacked together in-camera to mathematically yield that high ISO number. According to the video, we can expect the price of the K3 Mark III to be in the US $2500 – $3000 range.

Oct 27, 2020

Progress report on PENTAX’s new APS-C-format digital SLR flagship camera: officially named PENTAX K-3 Mark III

RICOH COMPANY, LTD. and RICOH IMAGING COMPANY, LTD. have been developing a new PENTAX K-series digital SLR camera, which will be positioned as the flagship model of the APS-C-format SLR lineup.

Currently in development, the new camera now has its official name: the PENTAX K-3 Mark III.

Designed to be a camera embodying The Five Principles of PENTAX, it will incorporate an array of functions and features to highlight the significance of SLR photography, and to optimize the joy taking pictures for everyone with a passion for photography.

The product prototype was exhibited last year during the PENTAX 100th Year Anniversary event. At the event, we announced that it would be launched by the end of 2020 — and it is now in the final stage of development. Once the development is complete, we will streamline the camera’s production system. It has taken a bit longer than expected, so we appreciate your patience and wish to share already an overview of the product, as per the specifications below.

We’ll provide you with more product information, such as the scheduled market launch date, as soon as the information is confirmed. Finally, we invite you to visit our RICOH IMAGING website for more information on the new PENTAX APS-C-format digital SLR flagship, and to get ready for the arrival of this new camera, which we expect to set a new standard for the future of SLR photography.

Overview of the new product in development:

  • Product name: PENTAX K-3 Mark III
  • Launch date: scheduled around the period of the CP+ camera exhibition, which will be held from February 25 to 28 in 2021.
  • Price: Not decided

The five principles of PENTAX:

  1. We design new cameras through sheer devotion.
  2. Our goal is to produce cameras with the power to capture images that allow for direct communication with the subject.
  3. We design cameras that allow our users to enjoy all the processes involved in taking a picture.
  4. We pursue a level of quality and performance that can’t be measured by numbers alone.
  5. We respect and value the photographic experiences of our users and view this as an invaluable asset.

The designs and specifications are identical to those first announced publicly about the camera’s development, and are subject to change without notice.

Main Features of the PENTAX K-3 Mark III:


TTL autofocus, auto-exposure SLR digital-still camera

Lens Mount

PENTAX KAF2 bayonet mount (AF coupler, lens information contacts, K-mount with power contacts)

Compatible Lens

KAF4, KAF3, KAF2 (power zoom compatible), KAF, KA mount lens

Image capture unit

Image Sensor

Primary color filter, CMOS.  Size: 23.3 x 15.5 (mm)

Effective Pixels

Approx. 25.73 megapixels

Total Pixels

Approx. 26.78 megapixels

Dust Removal

Image sensor cleaning using ultrasonic vibrations “DR II”

(Standard output)

ISO AUTO/100 to 1600000 (EV steps can be set to 1EV, 1/2EV or 1/3EV)

Image Stabilizer

Sensor-shift shake reduction “SR II”(5-axis) Auto/Panning/Off
Compensation effect of 5.5 steps
*Measured in conformity to CIPA standards, using smc PENTAX-DA 18-135mmF3.5-5.6ED AL[IF]DC WR lens at a focal length of 135mm.

AA Filter Simulator

Moiré reduction using SR unit.  OFF/Low/High/Bracketing (2 images)/Bracketing (3 images)

File formats

File format

RAW (PEF/DNG), JPEG (Exif 2.3), DCF2.0 compliant

Recorded Pixels


Quality Level

RAW (14bit): PEF, DNG
★★★ (Best), ★★ (Better), (Good), RAW + JPEG simultaneous capturing available

Color Space

sRGB, AdobeRGB

Storage Medium

SD, SDHC and SDXC Memory Card (Conforms to USH-I, UHS-II standards)

Dual SD slot

Sequential Use, Save to Both, Separate RAW/JPG, Image copy between slots possible

Storage Folder

Folder Name: Date (100_1018,101_1019…) or User assigned folder name (Default “PENTX”)

Recording File

File Name: “IMGP****” or User assigned file name
File name numbering: Sequential, Reset



Pentaprism Finder

Coverage (FOV)

Approx. 100%


Approx. 1.05x (FA 50mmF1.4 at infinity)

Eye-Relief Length

Approx. 20.5mm (from the view window), Approx. 22.0mm (from the center of lens)

Diopter adjustment

Approx. -4.0m to + 1.0m-1

Focusing Screen

Natural-Bright-Matte III focusing screen

Viewfinder Overlay

AF Points, Grid Display, Electronic Level, AF Frame, Spot Metering Frame, Crop, Smart Function, Operation Control Lock

Live view


TTL method using image sensor

Focusing Mechanism

Contrast detection (Auto Area, Zone Select, Tracking, Select(L/M/S), Spot)


Focus Peaking, Face detection, Touch AF


Field of View approx. 100%, Magnified view (up to 16x),
Grid Display (4×4 Grid, Golden Section, Scale, Square(L), Square(S), Grid Color: Black/Gray/White ), Histogram, Bright area warning, Composition Adjustment

LCD monitor


Wide viewing angle TFT color LCD, Air-gapless glass


3.2 inch (aspect ratio 3:2)


Approx. 1620K dots

Touch Screen

Capacitive sensing method


Brightness, Saturation and Colors adjustable

Outdoor View Setting

Adjustable ±2 step

Night Vision LCD Display


White Balance


Method using a combination of the image sensor and the RGBIr sensor

White Balance

AUTO WB, Multi Auto WB,
Daylight, Shade, Cloudy, Fluorescent Light (D:Daylight Color, N:Daylight White, W:Cool White, L:Warm White), Tungsten Light, CTE,
Manual WB (up to 3 settings), Color Temperature Configuration (up to 3 settings), Copying the white balance setting of a captured image

Fine Adjustment

Adjustable ±14 steps on A-B axis or G-M axis

Autofocus System


TTL: Phase-matching autofocus

Focus Sensor

SAFOX 13, 101 point (25 cross type focus points)

Brightness Range

EV-4 to 18 (ISO 100 / at normal temperature)
*EV-4 with luminance flux based on F2.8 levels

AF mode

Single AF (AF.S), Continuous AF (AF.C)

AF Point Selection

Auto Area, Zone Select, Select, Expanded Area(S, M, L), Select(S), Spot

AF Assist Light

Dedicated LED AF assist light



TTL open aperture metering using 307K pixel RGBIr sensor, Multi-segment, Center-weighted, Spot and Highlight-weighted

Metering Range

EV-3 to 20 (ISO100 at 50mm F1.4)

Exposure Mode

Scene Analyze Auto, Program, Sensitivity Priority, Shutter Priority, Aperture Priority, Shutter & Aperture Priority, Manual, Bulb, Flash X-sync Speed, USER1, USER2, USER3, USER4, USER5

EV Compensation

±5EV (1/2EV steps or 1/3EV steps can be selected)

AE Lock

Button type (timer type: two times the meter operating time set in Custom Setting);
Continuous as long as the shutter button is halfway pressed



Electronically controlled vertical-run focal plane shutter
* Electronic shutter when using Pixel Shift Resolution

Shutter Speed

Auto:1/8000 to 30 sec., Manual:1/8000 to 30 sec. (1/3EV steps or 1/2EV steps), Bulb (Timed exposure setting possible from 1 sec. to 20min.)

LV Electronic Shutter


Drive modes

Mode Selection

Single Frame, Continuous (H, M, L), Bracketing (2, 3 or 5 frames), Depth of Field Bracketing, Motion Bracketing, Mirror-up,
Multi-Exposure (Average/Additive/Bright), Interval Shooting, Interval Composite


12s, 2s

Remote Control

0s, 3s

Continuous Shooting

Max. approx. 12 fps, JPEG ( L: ★★★ at Continuous H): up to approx. 37 frames, RAW: up to approx. 32 frames
Max. approx. 7.0 fps, JPEG  L:
★★★ at Continuous M): up to approx. 60 frames, RAW: up to approx. 37 frames
Max. approx. 2.5 fps, JPEG ( L:
★★★ at Continuous L): up to approx. 90 frames, RAW: up to approx. 39 frames
*Depending on shooting conditions
*Continuous shooting speed slows down with High sensitivity

External Flash

Flash Modes

Auto Flash Discharge, Auto Flash + Red-eye Reduction, Flash On, Flash On + Red-eye Reduction, Slow-speed Sync, Slow-speed Sync + Red-eye, P-TTL, Contrast-control-sync, High-speed sync, Wireless sync
* Contrast-control-sync and High-speed sync requires 2 or more dedicated external flash

Sync Speed


Flash Exposure Compensation


Capture Settings

Custom Image

Auto Select, Bright, Natural, Portrait, Landscape, Vibrant, Radiant, Muted, Flat, Bleach Bypass, Reversal Film, Monochrome, Cross Processing

Cross Process

Random, Preset 1-3, Favorite 1-3

Digital Filter

Extract Color, Replace Color, Toy Camera, Retro, High Contrast, Shading, Invert Color, Unicolor Bold, Tone Expansion, Bold Monochrome, Grainy Monochrome


Adjustable ±4 step

Skin Tone



Auto, HDR1, HDR2, HDR3, Advanced HDR, Exposure bracket value adjustable, Automatic composition correction function

Pixel Shift Resolution

Available, Motion Correction On/Off

Lens Correction

Distortion Correction, Peripheral Illumin. Correction, Lateral Chromatic Aberration Correction, Diffraction Correction

D-Range Correction

Highlight Correction, Shadow Correction

Noise Reduction

Slow Shutter Speed NR, High-ISO Noise Reduction

Horizon Correction

SR On: correction up to 1 degrees, SR Off: correction up to 2 degrees

Composition Adjustment

Adjustment range of ±1.5mm up, down, left or right (1mm when rotated); Rotating range of 1 degree

Electronic Level

Displayed in viewfinder (Horizontal and vertical); Displayed on LCD monitor (Horizontal and vertical)

Program Line

AUTO, Normal, Hi-speed Priority, DOF Priority (Deep), DOF Priority (Shallow), MTF Priority


File Format


Recorded Pixels

4K(3840×2160, 30p/24p)
Full HD(1920×1080, 60p/30p/24p)


Built-in stereo microphone, external microphone (Stereo recording compatible)
Recording Sound Level adjustable, Wind Noise Reduction

Recording Time

Up to 25 minutes or 4GB ; automatically stops recording if the internal temperature of the camera becomes high.

White Balance

AUTO WB, Daylight, Shade, Cloudy, Fluorescent Light (D:Daylight Color, N:Daylight White, W:Cool White, L:Warm White), Tungsten Light, CTE,
Manual WB (up to 3 settings), Color Temperature Configuration (up to 3 settings), Copying the white balance setting of a captured image

Custom Images

Auto Select, Bright, Natural, Portrait, Landscape, Vibrant, Radiant, Muted, Flat, Bleach Bypass, Reversal Film, Monochrome, Cross Processing

Cross Processing

Random, Preset 1-3, Favorite 1-3.

Digital Filter

Extract Color, Replace Color, Retro, High Contrast, Invert Color, Unicolor Bold, Bold Monochrome


Playback View

Single frame,  Multi-image display (20, 48, 70 segmentation), Display magnification (up to 16, 100% display, quick zoom and Focus Magnification available), Grid display (4×4 Grid, Golden Section, Scale, Square(L), Square(S), Grid Color: Black/Gray/White), Rotating, Histogram (Y histogram, RGB histogram), Bright area warning, Auto Image Rotation, Detailed information, Copyright Information (Photographer, Copyright holder), GPS information (latitude, longitude, altitude, Coordinated Universal Time) , Orientation,  Folder Display, Calendar Filmstrip Display


Delete single image, Delete all, Select & delete, Folder delete, Calendar delete, Delete instant review image

Digital Filter

Base Parameter Adj, Extract Color, Replace Color, Toy Camera, Retro, High Contrast, Shading, Invert Color, Unicolor Bold, Tone Expansion, Bold Monochrome, Grainy Monochrome, Miniature, Soft, Fish-eye, Slim, Monochrome, Frame Composite

RAW Development

RAW file select:
Select Single Image, Select Multiple Images, Select a folder, Select a shooting date
RAW Development Parameter:
White Balance, Custom Image, Sensitivity, Digital filter, Clarity, Skin Tone, HDR, Pixel Shift Resolution, Distortion Correction, Peripheral Illumin. Corr., Lateral Chromatic Aberration Correction, Diffraction Correction, Color Fringe Correction, High-ISO Noise Reduction, Shadow Correction, File Format (JPEG/TIFF), JPEG Recorded Pixels, JPEG Quality, Aspect Ratio, Color Space


Protect, Image Rotation,  Image Copy, File Transfer, Save RAW Data in buffer memory, Resize, Cropping (Aspect ratio and Slant adjustment available),
Levels Adjustment, WB Adjustment, Color Moiré Correction, Movie Edit (Divide or delete selected frames), Capturing a JPEG still picture from a movie



USER Mode, Fx Button, AF/AE Lock Settings, Preview Dial, E-Dial Programming, Smart Function, Monitor Touch Opperation, Eye Sensor, Viewfinder Display, LCD Panel, Monitor Display, Instant Review, Zoom Review, Warning Display, Control Panel, Memory, EV Steps, ISO Sensitivity Steps, Color Temperature Steps, Input MF Lens Focal Length, Save Rotation Information, Aperture Information Record, AF Fine Adjustment, Copyright Information


English, French, Germany, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, Dutch, Danish, Swedish, Finnish, Polish, Czech, Hungarian, Turkish, Greek, Russian, Thai, Korean, Traditional Chinese, Simplified Chinese, Japanese

Power supply

Battery Type

Rechargeable Lithium-ion Battery D-LI90

AC Adapter

AC Adapter Kit K-AC166(Optional)

Battery Life

Number of recordable images: Approx.: 800 images
Playback time: Approx. 250 minutes
* With a fully-recharged Rechargeable Lithium-ion Battery. Tested in compliance with CIPA standard.
Actual results may vary depending on the shooting condition.


Connection Port

USB Terminal(USB Type-C), External cable switch terminal(2.5mm diameter), X-sync socket, HDMI output terminal (Type D) , Stereo microphone input terminal, Headphone terminal

USB Connection

USB 3.2 Gen1, Data Transfer: MTP/CD-ROM, Battery Recharge/Power Supply (Optional AC Adapter required)

Wireless LAN


IEEE 802.11b/g/n

Frequency (Center Frequency)

2412MHz2462MHz (1ch11ch)


Authentication:  WPA2, Encryption:  AES



Bluetooth® v4.2 (Bluetooth Low Energy

Frequency (Center Frequency)

2402MHz2480MHz (CH0CH39)

Dimensions and Weight


Approx. 134.5mm (W) x103.5mm (H) x 73.5mm (D) (excluding protrusions)


Approx. 820g (Including dedicated battery and SD Memory Card),
Approx. 735g (body only)