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Pentax *ist DS2

alaTest has collected and analyzed 77 reviews from magazines and websites. Reviews about the screen and usability are on the whole positive. The portability and performance also get good reviews, but some have doubts about the shutter.

value for money, performance, portability, usability, screen


We analyzed user and expert ratings, product age and more factors. Compared to other Digital SLR Cameras the Pentax *ist DS2 is awarded an overall alaScore™ of 86/100 = Very good quality.

See all Pentax Digital SLR Cameras

Review analysis

(Based on 77 reviews)

Expert Reviews  

User Reviews  

Showing 24 review(s)

Expert Reviews User Reviews
Showing 1 - 10 of 24 Show Reviews: in English | in other languages (5)

Expert review by:

Pentax *ist DS2


Megapixels: 6.1, Media Format: Secure Digital, Maximum Resolution: 3008 x 2008 pixels, Type: D-SLR

Light and portable. Uses double-A batteries. Decent burst mode.

So-so image quality. Poor flash. Slower than the competition.

With just passable image quality and performance, the *ist DS2 is outclassed by the competition.

Expert review by:

Pentax *ist DS2 SLR


The Pentax *ist DS2 is one of the smallest and lightest digital SLR cameras available. Measuring just 4.9 x 3.6 x 2.6 inches and weighing under 18 ounces, it has a durable stainless-steel chassis, multi-layered electronic circuit boards and delivers super

We liked the *ist DS when we reviewed it in 2004, and thought it was a terrific value at its then MSRP of $999 including kit lens. While we like the *ist DS2, a year has elapsed and Pentax has managed to produce only a larger LCD monitor as an upgraded fe

Expert review by:

Pentax *ist DS2 digital SLR camera


The Pentax *ist DS2 is one of the smallest and lightest digital SLR cameras available. It lets you capture 6 megapixel pictures through a zoom, macro, or another lens of your choice. With automatic scene modes and manual control over the image...

The Pentax *ist DS2 is a good value for the money for an entry-level SLR camera. It is small and light, and comes with all the functionality one can expect from a digital SLR.


Consumer review by:

Pentax *ist DS2


Decent camera. Very good high ISO performance. Excellent small primes. Decent IQ.

Horrible AF speed ; Also had camera for 3 months and it died. The problem was covered under warranty. Pentax took 5 months to fix it (yes that's not a typo). Remember this camera was only 3 months old. AVOID PENTAX AT ALL COSTS! A company that so...

Consumer review by:

Pentax *ist DS2


Takes nice images. AF is very slow in low light. However, high ISO performance is good.

Camera had a problem and had to be repaired under warranty by Pentax. It took them 5 months (yes not a typo) to fix it. Sold it once I finally got it back and purchased a different brand.

Consumer review by:

Pentax *ist DS2


A excellente choice for beginners

Consumer review by:

Pentax *ist DS2


After seeing NOTHING but Canon and Nikon all over the place I decided to go back to my old trusted Pentax SLR and see if the older lenses can be used in this new DSLR - I was happy to see that I can. So as a cost saver and trusted name I went with...

I can't say anything on the down side to this camera - it is a good all around DSLR - it (was) a resonable price and the quality overall is excellent. All my older lenses work (non-auto) and I get great shots consistantly. I would reccomend this camera...

Consumer review by:

Pentax *ist DS2


My first digital SLR is great value for the price. The best feature is the design, everything is exactly where it should be, thus the using is effortless.

The AA -batteries run out of power quite fast in long exposures ; The 18-55 kit lens makes soft images

Consumer review by:

Pentax *ist DS2


Was looking at the Nikon D-50 but was swayed by user response to the Pentax. The view finder and low light shooting were the deal maker. Have over a 1000 shots in the can and very happy with the purchase. I went super cheap on lenses getting a 2.8-4.3...

My wish is for a PEF conversion in CS2 then I'd be in RAW heaven. Pentax is dropping the ball on a CS2 conversion for it's long line.

Consumer review by:

Pentax *ist DS2


Overall, this is a great beginner camera. I had already a bunch of AF lenses from my other Pentax cameras and the switch to DSLR was an easy one. I didn't buy the body with the suggested lens, but instead opted to use my SIGMA lenses which worked...

What it's missing are some basic functions. This camera's ISO only goes down to 200. In a professional context, it really should go down to 100 if not 50 ; Also, the camera can only shoot a few images in burst mode, which definitely isn't faster than...

Product Specifications

Back by popular demand, the PENTAX ist DS2 offers the best of PENTAX digital SLR photography with a generous 2.5 inch monitor. Equipped with a high-magnification glass pentaprism viewfinder, the ist DS offers a large, clear view at every stage of digital photography from shooting to playback to editing. With its enhanced operability and maneuverability, the new ist DS2 assures high-quality digital SLR photography to shooters of all levels.

Audio Input

Type: None


Battery Form Factor:Standard form factor
Supported Battery Form Factor:AA / CR-V3

Camera Flash

Red Eye Reduction: Yes
Type:Pop-up flash

Digital Camera

Digital Camera Type:SLR
Supported Flash Memory:SD Memory Card

Dimensions & Weight


Display (Projector)

Diagonal Size:2.5in
Diagonal Size (metric):6.4cm
Display Form Factor:Built-in
Technology:TFT active matrix
Type:LCD display

Exposure Parameters

Shooting Programs:Action / Landscape / Night scene / Portrait mode


Packaged Quantity:1
Product Line:Pentax *ist

Lens System

Lens for SD:Body only

Optical Sensor

Optical Sensor Size:15.7 x 23.5mm
Optical Sensor Size (metric):15.7 x 23.5 mm
Optical Sensor Type:CCD
Sensor Resolution:6.1Megapixel

Optical Viewfinder

Type:Fixed eye-level pentaprism

Storage Floppy Drive

Type: None

Video Input

ISO (Max):3200
Light Sensitivity:ISO 1600 / ISO 200 / ISO 3200 / ISO 400 / ISO 800 / ISO auto
Still Image Format:JPEG / RAW
Type:Digital camera


Viewfinder Type:Optical