Now expected next year
By PF Staff in Pentax Announcements on Jun 29, 2018
Ricoh Imaging has announced a delay in the production of the DA★ 11-18mm F2.8, an upcoming premium ultra-wide zoom for Pentax APS-C bodies. The 11-18mm is now expected to launch in 2019.
Whatever the exact reason for this delay may be, it's clear that high-performance lenses such as these require a great deal of care and effort in terms of quality control. Should any noticeable issues make it into production, the future of the lens could then be in jeopardy— something like this may have led to the early discontinuation of the 25mm F4 lens in the 645 mount.
Nevertheless, this news will surely annoy users who have been eagerly awaiting this lens, especially considering the slow pace of recent announcements. The 11-18mm teaser was originally revealed in October 2017 and it was previously slated for a 2018 summer release.
More details on the delay can be found in the press release below.
New premium full-frame prime lens
By PF Staff in Pentax Announcements on Jun 29, 2018
Ricoh Imaging has finally officially announced the HD Pentax-D FA★ 50mm F1.4 SDM AW, a premium prime lens designed to deliver the highest levels of image quality when paired with a full frame camera body such as the Pentax K-1 and K-1 Mark II. As a star-series lens, the new 50mm sports the latest in technology, including an electromagnetic aperture diaphragm and a newly-designed ring-type focusing motor.
This 50mm follows in the footsteps of Sigma, Zeiss, and other manufacturers who have recently started making wide-aperture primes optimized for image quality above all else. In fact, the D FA★ is both over 4 times heavier and over 4 times more expensive than the film-era FA 50mm F1.4.
The D FA★ 50mm F1.4 starts at $1199 in the US and £1199 in the UK, and it is expected to ship around July 21st, 2018. You can pre-order it now to secure your copy early, while also supporting the forum:
We originally learned about this lens last February, and we went hands-on with it in March and this year's CP+ show in Tokyo. We are looking forward to conducting our in-depth review once the production version of the lens becomes available.
Full specifications are available in our lens database.
This lens uses the KAF4 mount, which does away with the old-fashioned mechanical aperture linkage. However, this also means that the lens will always shoot wide-open on cameras older than the K-50. You can check the compatibility of the D FA★ 50mm F1.4 with your camera using our new tool.
Custom apps for Pentax cameras are around the corner
By PF Staff in Pentax Announcements on May 16, 2018
If you've been longing to write (or use) custom apps to interact with Pentax cameras, the wait may soon be over! Today, Ricoh Imaging released Software Development Kits (SDKs) allowing programmers to write apps to control Pentax cameras, both on computers as well as iOS and Android mobile devices. User-developed apps will thus soon be joining the ranks of existing official software from Ricoh, such as Image Sync, Image Transmitter, and the Lightroom plugin.
The days of unstable reverse-engineering will soon be over for the camera models supported by the SDK, which currently includes all models released in the past 2 years, in addition to the 645Z.
Plan to create an app or have a great idea for one? Let us know in the comments!
If you're a developer, head over to https://api.ricoh/ to grab the SDK.
This announcement follows in the footsteps of the Theta, which has had an SDK for some time now.
Reference exhibits at CP+ 2018
By PF Staff in Pentax Announcements on Feb 27, 2018
In preparation for the upcoming CP+ 2018 trade show, which kicks off on March 1st in Tokyo, Ricoh Imaging has revealed further details about the two K-mount lenses due for release later this year, including partial specifications.
We'll see the HD Pentax-D FA★ 50mm F1.4 SDM AW premium normal lens for the full frame system this spring. It will feature the latest KAF4 lens mount*, which incorporates electromagnetic aperture control. In addition, this will be the first Pentax lens to use a newly-designed ring-type autofocus motor. We expect this lens to deliver "corner to corner" sharpness, as has been the trend with recent modern primes. It is possible that Ricoh will officially announce this lens in the coming days (as implied by the "one reference product" in the press release text).
The HD Pentax-DA★ 11-18mm F2.8 ED DC AW is expected in the summer. This will be a wide-angle premium zoom for crop cameras. We've learned that it will use the KAF3 lens mount, which means it will remain compatible with older cameras like the Pentax K-5. The lens will also feature a focus clamp to allow for very precise manual focus adjustments.
*Cameras older than the Pentax K-3 will always shoot wide-open with this lens.
Ricoh will upgrade K-1 main board to add K-1 II features
By JonPB in Pentax Announcements on Feb 23, 2018
Ricoh has announced an offer that will essentially upgrade your current Pentax K-1 to a Pentax K-1 II. Pentax K-1 owners will be able to have their main circuit board replaced, upgrading the camera with the new features of the K-1 II, which we understand will include the accelerator unit that enables ISO 819200 and lower noise as well as the new Dynamic Pixel Shift Resolution mode that allows hand-held capture of pixel-shifted images. The upgrade service will also swap out the SR logo with one that reflects the K-1 II's new capabilities.