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The Cheapest DSLR with Weather Sealing
Get a Water-Resistant DSLR for Under $1000
For a long time, water-resistant DSLR cameras were out of reach of most amateur photographers. Unless you were willing to spend thousands on a pro-grade camera, the technology simply wasn't available.
Semi-pro (or prosumer) cameras brought weather sealing within grasp of more photographers, but until recently, it still wasn't available on an "affordable" or entry-level DSLR. Pentax, however, has changed that. The Pentax K-30 is the cheapest DSLR on the market with full weather sealing, and you can get it for under $1000. Skeptical about the quality? It's also getting rave reviews from photography journals and reviewers.
(Image of water-resistant Pentax K-30 provided by amazon. See link below.)
One of the features that typically distinguishes entry-level DSLR cameras from semi-pro or pro cameras is the weatherproofing. Professional photographers can't just stop shooting when it starts to rain or a dust storm blows in, so expensive cameras have offered water-resistant, dust-resistant, freeze-resistant bodies and lenses for a long time. But Pentax is the first to put this technology in a truly affordable (and well-rated) DSLR.
It's a smart move for Pentax. Canon and Nikon together account for more than 80% of the world's DSLR sales, and many first-time DSLR buyers automatically get into the "Canon vs. Nikon" mindset. Now there's a very compelling reason for first-time buyers to look at Pentax.
The K-30 not only offers weather sealing, but also a compelling set of features, including excellent low-light performance, 6 fps continuous shooting, a 3-inch viewfinder with 100% coverage, 77 segment multi-pattern metering system, 1080p HD video, and much more. Unfortunately, the K-30 doesn't offer one-touch recording or the option for an external mic, making it less than ideal for videographers.
But for still photographers, the camera compares well to its peers. Reviewers at dpreview said, "It's at the top of its class in terms of feature set and high ISO performance," and Popular Photography magazine said the K-30 "might be Pentax's least-expensive DSLR, but it's far from 'entry level.'"
Men's Journal also had praise for the K-30. They awarded the water-resistant camera their "Gear of the Year" award and called it "the ideal DSLR for active adventurers who want versatility, speed, and precision while shooting." Average customers like it, too. On Amazon, it has a 4.7- out of 5-star rating as of this writing. One amazon reviewer who gave it a 5-star rating said, "Pentax, in my opinion, has smashed a home run with this camera."
- 16 MP APS-C CMOS sensor
- Full weather sealing for worry-free use in any weather condition; Rugged coldproof design for sub-freezing use (-10C, 14F)
- Full 1080p30 HD video features h.264 compression, flexible exposure control, and HDR finishing options
- Advanced SAFOX IXi+ autofocus engine features AF assist lamp, light source sensor, and improved optical components
- 3-inch LCD is wide angle viewable, and features 921,000 dots of resolution
Pentax K30 Video Review - How does the Pentax stack up to the Canon EOS T4i?
The Pentax K-30 is the cheapest water resistant DSLR currently on the market
For Fully Waterproof Cameras, You'll Need a Compact - Waterproof, shockproof, freezeproof and dustproof compacts can go underwater
The Pentax K-30 is fully weather-sealed, but it's not rated to be used underwater. So far, nobody has come out with a fully submersible DSLR camera suitable for underwater photography. You'll still need a waterproof housing if you want to take your K-30 or any other camera scuba diving. But compact cameras are already making strides in this area and offer an affordable way to take underwater photos without an expensive housing.
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