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Nikon D5500 vs Pentax K-S2 Comparison

Storage & Battery

Nikon D5500

Nikon D5500 camera image

Pentax K-S2

Pentax K-S2
Nikon D5500
Pentax K-S2
Refers to the year this camera was officially made available for sale.
Announcement Date
Refers to the date the manufacturer publicly announced the upcoming release and general specs of this camera.
January 06, 2015
March 02, 2015
Camera Type
Camera Size
Camera Weight

The Pentax K-S2 emerges as the winner with a score of 66/100, while the Nikon D5500 trails behind at 61/100. Both cameras are DSLR models, announced and released in 2015 with only a month apart. They share similarities in their camera types and launch years.

The Pentax K-S2 boasts a lower launch price of $800 compared to the Nikon D5500’s $900. On the other hand, the Nikon D5500 has a lighter weight of 420g, making it more portable than the Pentax K-S2, which weighs 678g.

Taking into account the higher score, lower price, and similar features, the Pentax K-S2 stands out as the better option. However, for those prioritizing portability, the Nikon D5500 may be a more suitable choice.

Nikon D5500 vs Pentax K-S2 Overview and Optics

The Pentax K-S2 outperforms the Nikon D5500 in optics with a score of 70/100, as opposed to the Nikon’s 65/100. Both cameras share common specifications, including a CMOS sensor, APS-C sensor size, and similar shooting speeds (5 for the Nikon D5500 and 5.4 for the Pentax K-S2). Additionally, both cameras have proprietary processors: the Nikon D5500 uses the Expeed 4, while the Pentax K-S2 employs the Prime MII.

The Pentax K-S2 surpasses the Nikon D5500 in several aspects. The K-S2 boasts a higher DXOMARK score for its sensor, 88, compared to the D5500’s 84. This difference reflects the K-S2’s superior image quality. Furthermore, the Pentax K-S2 has image stabilization, while the Nikon D5500 lacks this feature. Image stabilization allows for sharper images, especially in low-light conditions or when using longer lenses.

However, the Nikon D5500 has its advantages as well. It possesses a higher megapixel count, 24.2, compared to the Pentax K-S2’s 20. This difference means the Nikon D5500 can capture more detailed images. Additionally, the Nikon D5500 utilizes the Nikon F DX lens mount, which offers a wider range of compatible lenses than the Pentax KAF2 mount found on the K-S2.

Taking these factors into account, the Pentax K-S2 proves to be the better choice in terms of optics due to its higher sensor score and image stabilization. However, the Nikon D5500 may be more suitable for those who prioritize higher megapixels and a broader lens selection. Ultimately, each camera has its strengths and weaknesses, and the decision should be based on individual preferences and requirements.

The higher the number of megapixels, the more detail the cameras sensor can capture.
24.2 MP
20 MP
Image Resolution
Image resolution is measured in pixels and megapixels, width by height. The higher the number, the higher its resolution.
6000 x 4000 px
5472 x 3648 px
Sensor Type
The camera sensor captures light and records the image. Sensors vary in physical size, the number of pixels, and quality.
Sensor Size
The sensor size contributes to the overall quality as well as the dynamic and tonal range a camera can capture. As a rule of thumb, the more surface there is to read the light, the more information it will capture.
15.6 x 23.5 mm
23.5 x 15.6 mm
Sensor Format
Refers to the most commonly used sensor sizes.
Frame Rate
The number of sequential frames per second the camera can write to the memory card when shooting in burst or continuous mode.
5 fps
5.4 fps
Lens Mount
The lens mount will tell you what type of lens range you can fit onto the camera body. Often the same camera company will have different lens ranges for different cameras.
Nikon F DX
Pentax KAF2
Image Processor
The image processor in the camera converts the information collected on the sensor for digital storage on the memory card.
Expeed 4
Prime MII
Aspect Ratio
The aspect ratio refers to the proportional difference between width and height. The most popular aspect ratios are 3:2 and 4:3.
Minimum ISO (Native)
Refers to the lowest native (or 'base') ISO setting. Lower ISO are less sensitive to light but make a cleaner image.
Maximum ISO (Native)
Refers to the highest native (or 'base') ISO setting. Higher ISO is necessary for low-light situations or night photography, but higher ISOs often introduce grain or noise.
Minimum ISO (Expanded)
Expanded (or extended) ISO is a digitally enhanced feature available on some cameras. It allows you to push beyond the native ISO range if necessary.
Maximum ISO (Expanded)
Expanded (or extended) ISO is a digitally enhanced feature available on some cameras. It allows you to push beyond the native ISO range if necessary.
Minimum Shutter Speed
The minimum shutter speed will tell you the longest exposure your camera can take without using an external accessory.
30 s
30 s
Maximum Shutter Speed
The maximum shutter speed tells you the length inside 1 second the camera will capture. These can sometimes be extended with accessories such as extra external batteries.
1/ 4000 s
1/ 6000 s
Autofocus Points
Autofocus points show where the camera is focusing graphically as squares or brackets in Live View or on an electronic viewfinder. These points are also used for light meter readings.
In-body Stabilization
In-body Stabilization means the camera has a certain technology embedded that counteracts camera shake.
Viewfinder Type
The viewfinder type is either electronic or optical. Electronic viewfinders will have a small screen in the viewfinder. Optical viewfinders will use prisms and mirrors to look through the lens.
Optical (pentamirror)
Optical (pentaprism)

Nikon D5500 vs Pentax K-S2 Video Performance

The Nikon D5500 and Pentax K-S2 both score 70/100 for their video capabilities, showcasing no difference between the two in terms of their performance. They share several common specs, including Full HD video resolution, maximum video dimensions of 1920 x 1080, a maximum video frame rate of 60fps, and built-in time-lapse functionality.

Although the Nikon D5500 and Pentax K-S2 have identical video scores, each camera offers some unique advantages. The Nikon D5500 provides exceptional image quality, accurate and fast autofocus, and a variety of video shooting modes that cater to different users’ needs. Its user-friendly interface and ergonomic design also make it easy to handle and operate, especially for beginners.

On the other hand, the Pentax K-S2 stands out with its rugged and weather-sealed construction, allowing users to shoot videos in various weather conditions without worrying about potential damage. This camera also offers in-body image stabilization, which helps reduce camera shake and produce smoother videos when shooting handheld or in challenging environments.

To conclude, both the Nikon D5500 and Pentax K-S2 offer impressive video capabilities with their Full HD resolution, 60fps frame rate, and built-in time-lapse functionality. While the D5500 excels in user-friendliness and video shooting modes, the K-S2 shines with its durability and image stabilization. Ultimately, the choice between these two cameras depends on the user’s specific needs and preferences.

Indicates if this camera is capable of recording video.
Max Video Resolution
The best resolution this camera can capture video in. Modern cameras can capture up to 8K video.
Full HD
Full HD
Max Video Dimensions
Video resolution measured by the greatest number of pixels possible in each frame, width by height. A higher resolution means more detail or clarity in your video.
1920 x 1080 px
1920 x 1080 px
Max Video Frame Rate
How many frames per second your video will capture. Most cameras have options for multiple frame rates, depending on the resolution you shoot in. For a general video, 24p or 30p is the standard, but more serious filmmakers may need a higher frame rate for creative effect.
60 p
60 p
Time-Lapse Built In
A built in time-lapse mode will allow continuous shooting throughout a prolonged period of time to be compressed into a sped up video.
Video File Format
Different cameras can record in various video file formats. The File format you record in can impact how you edit and use the files.

Nikon D5500 vs Pentax K-S2 Features and Benefits

The Pentax K-S2 wins the features comparison with a score of 68/100, while the Nikon D5500 scores 59/100. Both cameras share some specifications, including a flip screen and WiFi connectivity. However, the K-S2 outperforms the D5500 in certain aspects, while the D5500 has its own advantages.

The Pentax K-S2 is superior in terms of GPS and Bluetooth capabilities, as it has both features, while the Nikon D5500 lacks them. These features enhance the user experience by providing geotagging options and seamless connectivity with other devices. Additionally, the K-S2 has a slightly higher feature score, which indicates its overall better performance in this category.

Conversely, the Nikon D5500 has a larger screen size of 3.2 inches compared to the K-S2’s 3-inch screen. This allows for better image preview and easier menu navigation. Furthermore, the D5500’s screen resolution is higher at 1,037,000 dots, compared to the K-S2’s 921,000 dots, providing a clearer and more detailed display. The D5500 also has a touchscreen, which is absent in the K-S2, making it more user-friendly and convenient for adjusting settings.

Despite the higher score of the Pentax K-S2, the Nikon D5500 has its own strengths, particularly in screen size, resolution, and touchscreen capabilities. Both cameras offer unique features that cater to different user preferences. Ultimately, the choice between these two cameras depends on the individual’s priorities and desired features.

Built-in Flash
A built-in flash will often be positioned right above the lens. This will automatically pop up when you activate it.
External Flash
External flashes are often connected through a hot shoe at the top of a camera, or a cable at the side of the camera.
GPS features in a camera will include location metadata to each of your photographs.
Weather Sealing
Weather sealing capabilities will give you more confidence when shooting in unfavourable conditions.
Screen Type
Touch Screen
Touchscreen allows you to change camera settings and access menus with a swipe of your finger, instead of using buttons.
Screen Size
Screen Resolution
Screen dots indicate the resolution of the LCD screen by including each sub pixel.
1,037,000 dots
921,000 dots
Flip Screen
A flip screen (or articulating screen) is a second screen which can flip out from the side or top of the camera. This rotating screen allows you more freedom to take photos at different angles.
Live View
Live View feature allows you to see a continuous live video of what is being seen through your lens.
Bluetooth capabilities allow you wireless control of your camera with other external devices.

Nikon D5500 vs Pentax K-S2 Storage and Battery

The Nikon D5500 outperforms the Pentax K-S2 in storage and battery with a score of 35/100, while the K-S2 scores 24/100. Both cameras share similarities in this category, such as having one memory card slot and accepting SD, SDHC, and SDXC memory cards. Neither camera offers USB charging.

The D5500 has a superior battery life, providing 820 shots per charge using its EN-EL14 battery, more than double the K-S2’s 410 shots with its D-LI109 battery. This longer battery life makes the Nikon D5500 a more reliable option for extended shooting sessions.

On the other hand, the Pentax K-S2 has a slight advantage in memory card compatibility, supporting UHS-I compatible SD cards, which allows for faster read and write speeds. However, this advantage may not outweigh the significant difference in battery life.

Considering both storage and battery performance, the Nikon D5500 emerges as the better option, offering a more reliable battery life, crucial for capturing important moments without interruptions.

Storage and Battery
Storage and Battery
Memory Card
SD / SDHC / SDXC (UHS-I compatible)
Dual Memory Card Slots
Battery Type
Battery Life
Approximately how long this cameras battery will last measured by how many photographs you will be able to take.
820 shots
410 shots
USB Charging
Sensor scores tested by DXOMARK
Overall Score
DXOMARK overall sensor score.
Portrait (Color Depth)
As described by DXOMARK 'The Portrait score in our camera sensor reviews defines color depth performance and its unit is a number of bits. A color depth of 22 bits is excellent; differences below 1 bit are barely noticeable.'
24.1 bits
Landscape (Dynamic Range)
As described by DXOMARK 'The Landscape score in our camera sensor tests defines the maximum dynamic range of the camera sensor and its unit is an exposure value (EV). A value of 12 EV is excellent with differences below 0.5 EV usually not noticeable.'
14 EVs
Sports (Low-Light ISO)
Described by DXOMARK as 'The maximal value of ISO sensitivity needed to reach a given value of Signal-to-Noise Ratio (SNR). The greater the value, the better'

Nikon D5500 vs Pentax K-S2 – Our Verdict

Are you still undecided about which camera is right for you? Have a look at these popular comparisons that feature the Nikon D5500 or the Pentax K-S2:

User Scores
B&H photo video
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