Summary: The Pentax K-500 is not only the most capable, but also the most affordable entry-level Pentax DSLR produced to date. Because it based on the K-50, Pentax have been able to include many advanced features while keeping the price of the camera very low.
Pros: Excellent image quality, Kit lens of good quality, In-body shake reduction and dust removal, Competetively priced, User-friendly interface, Very fast live-view autofocus, Loaded with features otherwise uncommon for its class, 100%-coverage pentaprism viewfinder, Durable construction, Handles well, AA and Li-ion battery compatibility, Class-leading ISO range, High 6FPS framerate and decent buffer size, Focus peaking in live view, Good video framerate options, .MOV H.26...
Cons: Viewfinder autofocus speed lags behind the competition, Autofocus poor for sports, Lacks AF point indicators in the viewfinder- a basic feature on today's DSLRs, Drops out of live view when menu is accessed or mode is changed, Loud autofocus with screwdrive lenses, Somewhat loud shutter, Live view button oddly placed, AF temporarily blurs image in live view, Relatively-short battery life, No external microphone jack, Mono sound during video, Video AF is still unreliab...
Summary: With a feature set that wouldn't look out of place one more costly models, the K-500 is perhaps one of if not the best-specified entry-level DSLRs you'll find thanks in part to the large pentaprism viewfinder, 6fps burst shooting, dual control dials and AF system that includes 9 cross-type sensors.
Conclusion: If you keep tabs on its enigmatic autofocusing and don't mind dialling in some exposure compensation now and again, then this is a well made, well equipped and high performing DSLR for beginners and established photographers alike.
Excerpt: This entry level DSLR uses the same 16.28MP CMOS sensor, the same SAFOX IXi+ AF system and, remarkably at this price level, even has a proper glass pentaprism finder with 100% field of view. This is indeed a high level of spec and it seems there are only a few sacrifices made, none of which compromise either construction standards or image quality.
Pros: Excellent image quality, Fast operation including upgraded AF, Glass pentaprism viewfinder, In body shake reduction, Backwards compatibility with thousands of lenses, Wide ISO range, Excellent ergonomics, Excellent build quality, AA Battery option
Cons: No weather resistance, Loud focus on DAL lens
Conclusion: Although there's an impressive feature set for the money, the lack of any focus point display in the viewfinder is a small yet very noticeable omission. That, along with the K-500's propensity to underexpose, makes it easy to lose faith in the camera's autofocus and exposure metering abilities. This is an even bigger shame given the strength of the camera's image quality, especially in low light.