BEST FOR: Downsizing Pentax devotees. THE TEST: Pentax took its K-01 in the opposite direction of the Gear of the Year–winning Canon G1X, making it compatible with hundreds of K-mount lenses. This baby accepts everything from fish-eyes to a 600mm telephoto, though the included ultrathin 40mm f/2.8 lens will be plenty for most enthusiasts. The lens options make it versatile, but the K-01 was still the most intuitive camera we tested. The ribbed rubber grip felt solid, and Pentax didn’t skimp on horsepower: a 16.3-megapixel CMOS sensor powers the K-01, it can fire seven frames per second, and you can edit HD video onscreen. THE VERDICT: This brawny MILC was a close runner-up for Gear of the Year.
The Pentax is among a new generation of cameras with interchangeable lenses but, unlike DSLRs, no mirrors between the lens and sensor. So-called mirrorless interchangeable-lens cameras (MILCs) blend DSLR performance with the ease of a point-and-shoot.