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I believe Canon was the first to do it: use white to identify a photographic product, especially some of its lenses. Now Pentax takes it further and splashes white onto one of its DSLR models.
The original PENTAX K2000 (also known as the K-m in some parts of the world) DSLR arrived on the scene late in 2008 — and it was black. Then many were surprised to see a limited edition, white version of the camera just a few months later. And it sure is a nice looking camera.
White, they tell us, is an ideal colour for cameras used in the hot outdoors because of its reflective capacity. But, for me, a white camera solves one of my persnickety grumbles: the visibility of external controls and their function labels. The black buttons and text IDs just leap off the snowy-white camera. Problem solved.
Claimed by Pentax to be “world’s smallest DSLR”, this entry-level model has respectable but not eye-bursting specs: 10.2 megapixels on a 23.5×15.7mm CCD, with a 35 SLR lens factor of 1.5; maximum image size of 3872×2592 pixels (prints out to 33×22 cm at 300 dpi); 8-bit JPEG or 12-bit RAW capture plus JPEG+RAW; ISO range from 100 to 3200; SD/SDHC storage; shutter speeds from 30 to 1/4000 second with flash sync at 1/180 second; 6.9 cm LCD and pentaprism viewing; auto, Program AE, aperture and shutter priority, manual exposure plus 15 scene modes and six ‘digital filters’; image noise reduction; multi-segment/centre-weighted/spot metering; single and continuous mode auto and manual focus; five JPEG frames can be shot at 3.5 fps.
The camera takes a different approach to Live View, allowing a frozen frame preview of the scene to splash across the LCD screen so you can assess focus, brightness etc.
The internal shake reduction system works with a floating CCD, so any almost any Pentax lens can be accommodated. The CCD has a dust repellent function, by shaking the CCD each time the camera starts up.
Unusually, the Pentax uses four single use or rechargeable AA batteries. Four AAs are of course heavier and larger than a single lithium cell but at least you can buy them almost anywhere.
For the newbie there is a supportive Help button on the LCD: press it and explanatory text immediately pops up on the screen. Then there’s the useful Auto Picture that sets the camera to the right mode when the camera senses there is a portrait, landscape, macro shot, a moving subject or a night scene before the lens.
Picture quality: well-saturated colour, with excellent sharpness.
The K2000 (K-m) White is an entry level camera that will encourage timid photographers to greater challenges. You won’t be fazed at a myriad of controls and the viewfinder menus are enough to put you on the right track.
My only question is why does it cost more for the white model?