Updated (May, 2012): Compare the Nikon D3200 vs Pentax K-30

Pentax K-30

Winner
Pentax K-30

86

vs

Nikon D3100

54

Nikon D3100

Runner-up
     

Reasons to buy the Pentax K-30

Great image quality
Overall image quality
79.0
Full HD
Movie format
1080p @ 30fps
Great color depth
Color depth
23.7 bits
Wide dynamic range
Dynamic range
13 EV
 

Reasons to buy the Nikon D3100

Movie format
Full HD
1080p @ 24fps
Movie continuous focus
Movie continuous focus
Makes it easy to get in-focus movies
Badge
Autofocuses shooting video
Contrast detection
Size
Really small
Prosumer size 124x96x73 mm
 

differences

Advantages of the Nikon D3100

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Lens availability
Much more lenses available
205 lenses vs 109 lenses
Help
Around 90% more lenses available
Startup delay
Significantly less startup delay
400 ms vs 1100 ms
Help
2.7x less delay when turning on
Battery life
Longer battery life
550 shots vs 410 shots
Help
More than 30% more shots per battery charge
Weight
Significantly lighter
505 g vs 650 g
Help
More than 20% lighter
Lowest price
Cheaper
$272.29 vs $369.99
Help
The best price we've seen is $98 cheaper (around 30% less)
Size
Slightly smaller
124x96x73 mm vs 130x97x71 mm
Help
Almost the same
Nikon D3100 Learn more about
the Nikon D3100

Advantages of the Pentax K-30

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Screen resolution
Much higher resolution screen
921k dots vs 230k dots
Help
More than 4x higher resolution screen
Dynamic range
More dynamic range
13 EV vs 11.3 EV
Help
1.7 f-stops more dynamic range
Overall image quality
Significantly better image quality
79.0 vs 67.0
Help
Around 20% better image quality
Low light performance
Lower noise at high ISO
1,129 ISO vs 919 ISO
Help
The K-30 has a slight edge (0.3 f-stops) in low noise, high ISO performance
HDR
Has in-camera HDR
Yes vs No
Help
Combines multiple exposures to capture high dynamic range
Image stabilization
Image stabilization
Sensor shift vs None
Help
Helps eliminate blur caused by small camera movements
Continuous shooting
Shoots much faster
6 fps vs 3 fps
Help
2x faster continuous shooting
Viewfinder size
Significantly larger viewfinder
0.61x vs 0.51x
Help
Around 40% larger viewfinder
Weather sealed
Weather sealed
Yes vs No
Help
Sealed to shoot in the rain
Color depth
Better color depth
23.7 bits vs 22.5 bits
Help
Distinguishes 1.2 more bits of color
Shutter lag
Significantly less shutter lag
162 ms vs 279 ms
Help
More than 40% less delay when taking photos
Cross type focus points
Significantly more cross-type focus points
9 vs 1
Help
Grab focus in difficult situations
Movie format
Lower frame rate movies
1080p @ 30fps vs 1080p @ 24fps
Help
Both shoot Full HD (1080p) video, but D3100 does so at a lower frame rate
Sensor size
Larger sensor
APS-C 23.7x15.7mm vs APS-C 23.1x15.4mm
Help
Almost the same
Viewfinder coverage
Significantly better viewfinder coverage
100% vs 95%
Help
Around 10% better viewfinder coverage
Viewfinder
Has a pentaprism viewfinder
Pentaprism vs Pentamirror
Help
Pentaprism viewfinders are typically brighter
True resolution
Higher true resolution
16.1 MP vs 14.2 MP
Help
Capture more than 10% more detail in your photos
Light sensitivity
Better maximum light sensitivity
12,800 ISO vs 3,200 ISO
Help
The K-30's maximum light sensitivity is 2 f-stops better
Light sensitivity (boost)
Better boost ISO
25,600 ISO vs 12,800 ISO
Help
The K-30's boost ISO is 1 f-stop better
Fastest shutter speed
Significantly faster max shutter speed
1/6000s vs 1/4000s
Help
More than 30% faster max shutter speed
Thickness
Thinner
2.8" vs 2.9"
Help
Almost the same
Pentax K-30 Learn more about
the Pentax K-30
vs

recommendations

Which camera do we recommend? Relative to the best recent entry-level DSLRs, and ignoring price

Snapsort Recommends
Nikon D3100 Nikon D3100 54
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    Style
      Color
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        vs

        86 Pentax K-30 Pentax K-30
        Retailer
          Style
            Color
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              similarities

              Compared to recent entry-level DSLRs

              Common Strengths
              Size Fairly small Help
              D3100:124x96x73 mm
              K-30:130x97x71 mm
              Lowest price Inexpensive Help
              D3100:$272.29
              K-30:$369.99
              Common Weaknesses
              External mic jack Neither has an external mic jack Help
              Limited to the in-camera mic
              True resolution Capture low resolution images Help
              D3100:14.2 MP
              K-30:16.1 MP
              Screen flips out No flip-out screens Help
              Less flexible
              Focus points Few focus points Help
              11
              Panorama Neither camera stitches together panoramas Help
              You could stitch photos in post

              dxomark

              DXOMark

              competitors

              Shared Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Nikon D3200

              Nikon D3200

              Entry-level DSLR

              $309 - $527 body only

              $389 - $447 with 18-55mm lens

              True resolution Takes much higher resolution photos
              External mic jack Has an external mic jack
              Fastest shutter speed Has a slower max shutter speed
              Thickness Is thicker
              Nikon D5100

              Nikon D5100

              Entry-level DSLR

              $360 - $385 body only

              $429 - $499 with 18-55mm lens

              Screen flips out Has a screen which flips out
              External mic jack Has an external mic jack
              Fastest shutter speed Has a slower max shutter speed
              Thickness Is thicker
              Canon Rebel T3i

              Canon Rebel T3i

              Entry-level DSLR

              $499 - $550 body only

              $549 - $630 with 18-55mm lens

              True resolution Takes slightly higher resolution photos
              Screen flips out Has a screen which flips out
              Fastest shutter speed Has a slower max shutter speed
              Lowest price Is slightly more expensive
              Nikon D3300

              Nikon D3300

              Entry-level DSLR

              $439 - $497 with 18-55mm lens

              Low light performance Is slightly less noisy at high ISO
              Movie format Records higher quality movies
              Fastest shutter speed Has a slower max shutter speed
              Lowest price Is slightly more expensive
              Nikon D90

              Nikon D90

              Entry-level DSLR

              $929 body only

              $900 with 18-55mm lens

              Battery life Has a significantly longer battery life
              Built-in focus motor Has a built-in focus motor
              Fastest shutter speed Has a slower max shutter speed
              Lowest price Is significantly more expensive
              Nikon D5200

              Nikon D5200

              Entry-level DSLR

              $497 body only

              $597 with 18-55mm lens

              Low light performance Is slightly less noisy at high ISO
              Overall image quality Has slightly better image quality
              Fastest shutter speed Has a slower max shutter speed
              Lowest price Is slightly more expensive
              Nikon D7000

              Nikon D7000

              Entry-level DSLR

              $625 body only

              $679 - $1,025 with 18-55mm lens

              External mic jack Has an external mic jack
              Battery life Has a much longer battery life
              Lowest price Is significantly more expensive
              Thickness Is thicker

              Nikon D3100 Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Canon EOS Rebel T5

              Canon EOS Rebel T5

              Entry-level DSLR

              $430 - $450 with 18-55mm lens

              Screen resolution Higher resolution screen
              True resolution Higher true resolution
              Low light performance More noise at high ISO
              Color depth Worse color depth
              Canon Rebel T3

              Canon Rebel T3

              Entry-level DSLR

              $380 - $389 body only

              $399 - $520 with 18-55mm lens

              Battery life Longer battery life
              Viewfinder size Larger viewfinder
              Movie format Lower resolution movies
              Screen size Significantly smaller screen

              Pentax K-30 Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Pentax K-50

              Pentax K-50

              Entry-level DSLR

              $350 - $400 body only

              $420 - $497 with 18-55mm lens

              Light sensitivity Better maximum light sensitivity
              Size Slightly smaller
              Pentax K-3

              Pentax K-3

              Entry-level DSLR

              $729 - $1,046 body only

              $947 - $1,358 with 18-55mm lens

              Cross type focus points Many more cross-type focus points
              True resolution Much higher true resolution
              Size Significantly larger
              Lowest price Significantly more expensive
              Pentax K-5

              Pentax K-5

              Entry-level DSLR

              $1,169 body only

              $910 with 18-55mm lens

              External mic jack Has an external mic jack
              Battery life Significantly longer battery life
              Supports 24p No 24p support
              Movie format Higher frame rate movies

              appearance

              Nikon D3100 Pentax K-30
              Nikon D3100 Pentax K-30
              Nikon D3100 Pentax K-30

              discussion

              Nikon D3100
              D3100
              Nikon

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              Pentax K-30
              K-30
              Pentax

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