CP+ Report: Sigma & Tamron Plans for Pentax
By Albert Siegel in CP+ 2015 on Feb 17, 2015
Sigma and Tamron are the two largest third-party Pentax autofocus lens manufacturers. As evidenced by our user lens reviews and in-depth reviews, a handful of Sigma and Tamron lenses are in fact highly-regarded and hold their ground against genuine Pentax counterparts.
Unfortunately, given the minuscule market share of the Pentax K-mount DSLR system, the aforementioned lens manufactures have somewhat neglected Pentax in recent years. Sigma has only been releasing a subset of its recent lenses for Pentax, while Tamron has ceased releasing new designs completely. We thus decided to speak with Sigma and Tamron representatives at CP+ 2015 to see if this might change in the future.
A Tamron representative at the show stated that Tamron is not considering any new Pentax products at the moment. The company will continue to produce what current lenses it has for Pentax, but nothing new will be released.
This means that it is unlikely that we will ever see Pentax versions of some of Tamron's latest lens designs. With that said, the SMC Pentax-DA 18-270mm F3.5-6.3 ED SDM is in fact a quietly-rebranded Tamron lens launched in 2012, so Pentax incarnations of future Tamron super zooms could potentially emerge through the same kind of partnership with Ricoh Imaging.
In response to a question about a modern universal lens mount, Tamron stated that it has been considered, but no firm decision has been made.
Now, let us move on to our discussion with Sigma representatives.
Sigma currently has no plans to re-release additional lenses in the Pentax K-mount despite the recent full-frame DSLR announcement. The following Global Vision lenses are only available in other mounts at this time (mainly Canon/Nikon/Sigma):
- 24mm F1.4 "Art"
- 24-105mm F4 "Art"
- 50mm F1.4 "Art"
- 120-300mm F2.8 "Sports"
- 150-600mm F5-6.3 "Contemporary"
Fortunately, we learned that production of older Sigma lenses for Pentax currently listed on the Sigma web site (such as the 8-16mm) has not ceased. A notable exception to this is the 70-200mm F2.8 OS HSM, which was only discontinued in the Pentax mount. We suspect that this lens will soon be replaced by a "Sports" version, however.
Sigma also stated that while production of the 150-600mm "Contemporary" in Pentax and Sony mounts has not been ruled out, it is currently not planned.
We are still awaiting a follow-up to our inquiry about the inconsistent autofocus performance of the Sigma 18-35mm F1.8 and we will therefore report on this separately.
As with anything in the photo industry, it is entirely possible that Sigma's plans for Pentax could change from one day to the next, so we will be keeping a close eye on the company's press releases over the course of the coming months. In the mean time, we plan to post in-depth reviews of the remaining Global Vision Lenses that we have not yet had a chance to examine, including the 18-200mm and 18-300mm "Contemporary". We already have in-depth reviews of the following Global Vision Lenses: