HD Pentax-D FA 21mm F2.4 Limited Lens Officially Announced

Premium ultra-wide full-frame Limited series lens

By PF Staff in Pentax Announcements on Oct 14, 2021

Ricoh has just released the HD Pentax-D FA 21mm F2.4 ED Limited ultra-wide angle lens which has been on display in the past as a prototype.

We have seen no press release yet on this new lens, but detailed product information is available at Ricoh's Pentax web site here. We have also incorporated the specifications into our database.

This new 21mm F2.4 Limited is the first full-frame Limited lens featuring a built-in silent autofocus motor and weather sealing. It is a premium ultra-wide lens with metal finish in the style of the FA Limited lenses and with an emphasis on top-notch optical performance. The aperture mechanism is controlled electronically (KAF4 mount)*.

At 21mm this lens is a nice supplement to the FA limited lenses and to a walk-around zoom like the D FA 28-105mm zoom.

Its optics incorporates four ED (Extra-low Dispersion) and one Super ED (Extra-low Dispersion) glass optical elements. Ricoh states that this will minimize chromatic aberration and prevent color bleeding, not only in the main in-focus area, but also in the surrounding defocused areas. It also features a large-aperture negative meniscus optical element, a biconvex aspherical glass-mold optical element, and a high-refraction glass optical element in the first lens group, to reduce overall size despite its ultra-wide-angle design. RICOH claims that this lens will deliver outstanding imaging performance for sharp, crisp images without any fuzziness, even in peripheral areas. Stay tuned for our upcoming test of the D FA 21mm lens which will look into these claims.

The lens is available in silver as well as black finish.

At the time of writing the lens is available for pre-order in Japan and the EU for €1499.  The lens is not immediately available for pre-order in the US.

*Cameras compatible with the KAF4 mount are the Pentax K-50 and newer. For K-1, K-3 II, K-3, K-S2, K-S1 and K-50, the camera’s firmware must be upgraded to the latest version. If this lens is mounted on a camera without the proper firmware upgrade, its diaphragm control mechanism becomes inactive leaving the aperture fixed at F2.4.  Visit our compatibility checker for more details.

Update: a press release was officially published on October 14th.

Press Release

TOKYO, October 14, 2021

RICOH IMAGING COMPANY, LTD. is pleased to announce the launch of the HD PENTAX-D FA 21mm F2.4ED Limited DC WR. Designed for use with PENTAX K-mounted full-frame digital SLR cameras, this ultra-wide-angle single-focus lens is the newest model of the PENTAX Limited series of lenses, highly acclaimed for their distinctive image rendition and superb exterior design.

Developed as the latest model of the PENTAX Limited series -- renowned for their meticulous attention to every detail, from distinctive image rendition to distinctive appearance with the machined aluminum lens barrel -- this ultra-wide-angle lens covers the image circle of 35mm full-frame digital SLR cameras. In the PENTAX Limited lineup, it is also the first D FA-series lens designed to optimize the visual characteristics of digital images. This is part of PENTAX's attempt to reach a level of imaging performance that can't be measured simply in numerical values. It captures the prevailing ambience and true-to-life sense of depth of the scene, and makes photography enjoyable for its users -- essential elements of the PENTAX Limited series. The 21mm ultra-wide-angle focal length, not previously available in the FA Limited series, adds a new perspective of visual expression for the Limited series.

Main features of the HD PENTAX-D FA 21mm F2.4ED Limited DC WR

  1. Exclusive Limited-series quality with optimized image rendition and fine texture description

    True to the Limited series design concept, this lens was developed to provide a distinctive visual expression. This could be achieved only by conducting a series of image quality assessments using a vast number of captured images, and by feeding the results back into the design process, along with various numerical evaluations using measuring instruments.
    When used for distant subjects such as landscapes, it assures solid, uniform image rendition across the image field. By further closing the aperture down, it delivers sharp, clear, high-resolution images, even at the edges. Its optical characteristics change for close-range photography. At open aperture, it provides a mild bokeh (defocused) effect in the background while capturing the main subject in sharp, crisp focus. This lets you make the subject stand out against a defocused background, with the exaggerated perspective typical of ultra-wide-angle lenses. At a minimum focusing distance of 18 centimeters, it can create a variety of visual expressions, depending on the subject being captured.
    To create a more attractive exterior design, the lens barrel, hood and cap are meticulously machined from high-grade aluminum. In every way, this lens is an exceptional image tool that brings greater joy and inspiration to your photography.

  2. Exceptional optics incorporating the latest optical technologies

    The lens optics incorporates four ED (Extra-low Dispersion) glass and one Super ED (Extra-low Dispersion) glass optical elements to minimize chromatic aberration and prevent color bleeding, not only in the main in-focus area, but also in the surrounding defocused areas. It also features a large-aperture negative meniscus optical element, a biconvex aspherical glass-mold optical element, and a high-refraction glass optical element in the first lens group, to reduce the overall size despite the ultra-wide-angle design, while delivering outstanding imaging performance for sharp, crisp images without fuzziness, even in the peripheral areas.
    The lens also features PENTAX-original HD Coating.* Compared with conventional multi-layer coatings, this high-grade, multi-layer coating reduces the average reflectance in the visible spectrum to less than 50 percent, effectively minimizing flare and ghost images even in demanding lighting conditions such as backlighting.

    * HD stands for High Definition.

  3.  Electromagnetic diaphragm mechanism for high-precision exposure control

    This lens incorporates an electromagnetic diaphragm mechanism* to assure high-precision exposure control when used in combination with compatible digital SLR cameras. It assures smooth, worry-free video shooting in locations prone to considerable brightness changes, such as a stage with rapidly changing lighting conditions, or a forest with filtering sunrays.

    * The lens features the KAF4 mount, and is compatible with electromagnetic diaphragm control. Electromagnetic diaphragm control is available in combination with the PENTAX K-3 Mark III, PENTAX K-3 II, PENTAX K-3, PENTAX KP, PENTAX K-70, PENTAX K-50, PENTAX K-S2, PENTAX K-S1, PENTAX K-1 Mark II and PENTAX K-1 camera bodies. We advise users to upgrade the camera's firmware to the latest version to properly operate the electromagnetic diaphragm mechanism.

  4. Dependable weather-resistant construction

    For use in demanding conditions -- such as at waterfronts or in sudden rainfall -- the lens features a dependable weather-resistant construction. By pairing it with a PENTAX weather-resistant digital SLR camera body, the user can create a highly dependable, airtight digital imaging system that performs superbly even in the most demanding shooting locations -- in rain or mist, or at locations prone to splashing water.

  5. Other features

        ・SP (Super Protect) Coating to keep the lens front surface free of dust or stains
        ・Serial number assigned to each lens (from 0000001 for the black model; from 1000001 for the silver model
        ・Built-in motor to drive the AF mechanism for smooth, quiet autofocus operation
        ・Eight-blade circular diaphragm to produce beautiful light beams with point light sources, while creating a natural, beautiful bokeh (defocus) effect at open and larger apertures
        ・QFS/A (Quick-Shift Focus System) for instant shift to the manual-focus mode without requiring focus-mode switching operations, after the subject has been captured in focus by the camera's autofocus system




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