Forgot Password
Pentax Camera Forums Home
 

Reply
Show Printable Version Search this Thread
01-20-2011, 07:43 PM   #31
Veteran Member
dgaies's Avatar

Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Maryland / Washington DC
Posts: 3,917
QuoteOriginally posted by pentup Quote
Please forgive the naive questions, but I was wondering, in regard to backups in case of failure:

Is it true that with older model bodies, SDM lenses can revert to screw-drive focusing? Rather than rewarding Pentax for bad lens design by buying more of them, could one perhaps use an old body as a backup -- assuming that screw-drive wouldn't be worse than manual focus for a given shoot, at least in an emergency?
You have to go back to the K100D or an early firmware version of the K10D to use the screw drive on the dual SDM lenses. But yes, in theory, you could do that.

QuoteOriginally posted by pentup Quote
And, why is it that newer bodies can't use screw-drive in the event of SDM failure? Is it simply a firmware disability? Could the company at least salve the wound slightly by patching the firmware so people wouldn't suddenly be left with manual focus when they need AF?
Can't answer the question as to why Pentax won't allow this (I could speculate, but it would have no basis). People have been asking for this for a long time, pretty much since SDM lenses were released. It hasn't happen yet, and I would almost guarantee it isn't going to happen in the future. Not saying I wouldn't like to have the option as well, but I just don't see it happening.

QuoteOriginally posted by pentup Quote
I was going to buy the DA* 50-135 since it gets such rave reviews, but as a hobbyist I simply don't want to deal with this warranty repair nightmare. And I don't want glass that, past its warranty, has lost a feature that accounted for much of its price to begin with.
I'm not sure getting the lens repaired is a "nightmare". If it's under warranty then it means going without your lenses for a few weeks while it's being repaired. If it happens outside your warranty, then it means the same wait plus some out of pocket expense. I wouldn't say the SDM motor accounts for "much of the price". A replacement motor, including installation by Pentax is on the order of $200-250 and from a authorized repair shop it's usually lower, closer to $150. Seeings as the DA* lenses range from $750 to 1200 new (in the US), in my mind it would certainly be worth fixing them if they fail vs using them as MF lenses or buying new ones.

01-20-2011, 08:28 PM   #32
Veteran Member




Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Flushing NY
Photos: Albums
Posts: 413
Thanks dgaies. I should have said hassle, not nightmare. But what I'm referring to is the hassle of possibly having an already repaired lens exhibit the same issue soon again, as apparently frequently happens, from what I've read on this forum. And once past the warranty, at some point one simply either settles for manual focus or sells it as is, or repairs it and sells it, hopefully recouping more of the value, or... yes, for me that's too much of a gamble, in terms of exasperation. But having never used an SDM lens, for all I know when they work they work so well that all is forgiven. But it's mainly the WR, the constant aperture and IQ I was interested in. When I put an elderly, long unused AF lens on my K-7, and blew the dust off it, the AF just worked. It was hideously noisy, but usable. The SDMs seem to fail even (or especially?) when they sit unused for long periods. I think I can control my LBA in this case. But dammit, I'd really like some good WR glass on my K-7!
01-20-2011, 08:52 PM   #33
Veteran Member
wlachan's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Canada
Photos: Albums
Posts: 2,625
QuoteOriginally posted by CWyatt Quote
This is one reason why Pentax struggles in the pro market. Gear needs to be very reliable...
I am afraid the LX system was the only genuine attempt for the pro market, and that was almost 3 decades ago. But even for the amateur market, Pentax is not doing any good with the never fixed issues like SDM, poorly made flashes, loose screws on LIMITED lenses, optical misalignment, misaligned digital level, weak low EV AF, non-exist AF tracking, and now the K-5 sensor stain. Either the Pentax management is unaware of the issues, or they have no intention spending more funds on them, since selling the camera division is always on the list.
01-20-2011, 09:09 PM   #34
Veteran Member
dgaies's Avatar

Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Maryland / Washington DC
Posts: 3,917
QuoteOriginally posted by pentup Quote
Thanks dgaies. I should have said hassle, not nightmare. But what I'm referring to is the hassle of possibly having an already repaired lens exhibit the same issue soon again, as apparently frequently happens, from what I've read on this forum. And once past the warranty, at some point one simply either settles for manual focus or sells it as is, or repairs it and sells it, hopefully recouping more of the value, or... yes, for me that's too much of a gamble, in terms of exasperation. But having never used an SDM lens, for all I know when they work they work so well that all is forgiven. But it's mainly the WR, the constant aperture and IQ I was interested in. When I put an elderly, long unused AF lens on my K-7, and blew the dust off it, the AF just worked. It was hideously noisy, but usable. The SDMs seem to fail even (or especially?) when they sit unused for long periods. I think I can control my LBA in this case. But dammit, I'd really like some good WR glass on my K-7!
I understand what you mean. I have 4 SDM lenses, none under warranty, so I know it's just a matter of time before I have to deal with a failure

It's frustrating because I really like the DA* lenses except for the SDM motors. Yes, they're pretty quiet, but they're not that fast and as everyone has pointed out, they have what appears to unacceptably high failure rate. So in my mind the advantages of having an SDM motor (without the ability to use the backup screw drive in the event of a failure) doesn't outweigh the downsides (specifically the cost of a failure). That said, I still bought and own them, as I was not able to control my LBA in this case

01-20-2011, 09:15 PM   #35
JHD
Veteran Member




Join Date: Jan 2010
Photos: Albums
Posts: 1,406
Pentax needs to dump SDM. What a pile poo. No doubt DA* are optically great lenses, but equipping them with SDM is just plain stupid. What a shame. The saga continues...
01-20-2011, 09:36 PM   #36
Veteran Member
RBellavance's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Near Montréal, Canada
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 1,716
QuoteOriginally posted by JHD Quote
Pentax needs to dump SDM. What a pile poo. No doubt DA* are optically great lenses, but equipping them with SDM is just plain stupid. What a shame. The saga continues...
Agreed 100%. Maybe SDM was a good idea (I'm not even sure of that), but if so it was very poorly implemented... It's slower and less reliable than screw-driven AF. The only "advantage" (if you can call it that) of SDM it that's it is silent. It is completely ridiculous.
01-20-2011, 11:01 PM   #37
Senior Member
Loren E's Avatar

Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Washington and California
Posts: 274
I would wager that the majority of us could do without silent AF which as stated is the SOLE advantage of SDM seeing as they aren't even fast. Please Pentax just cut the price by $200 and sell us DA* lenses with the screw-drive only! (I know it will never happen but I couldn't care less if my lens is noisy when focusing...at least it IS focusing!)
01-21-2011, 12:40 AM - 1 Like   #38
Senior Member




Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Newcastle, AU!
Posts: 273
If you shoot so much, not having a backup is just unproffesional man. I would never ever play a show with only one guitar! Especially if the guitar had a known problem (but since it sounded so good, I'd still use it).

I have a friend whose a pro car shooter, he shoots canon generally and they don't rush to your aid unless you spend 10's of thousands. And it costs per year iirc.

I say embrace the situation and let it play out more creatively with the 12-24! But then you may need to sell it to the editor

01-21-2011, 05:31 AM   #39
Site Supporter
Site Supporter




Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Gladys, Virginia
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 19,464
QuoteOriginally posted by pentup Quote
Thanks dgaies. I should have said hassle, not nightmare. But what I'm referring to is the hassle of possibly having an already repaired lens exhibit the same issue soon again, as apparently frequently happens, from what I've read on this forum. And once past the warranty, at some point one simply either settles for manual focus or sells it as is, or repairs it and sells it, hopefully recouping more of the value, or... yes, for me that's too much of a gamble, in terms of exasperation. But having never used an SDM lens, for all I know when they work they work so well that all is forgiven. But it's mainly the WR, the constant aperture and IQ I was interested in. When I put an elderly, long unused AF lens on my K-7, and blew the dust off it, the AF just worked. It was hideously noisy, but usable. The SDMs seem to fail even (or especially?) when they sit unused for long periods. I think I can control my LBA in this case. But dammit, I'd really like some good WR glass on my K-7!
The issue is really not as generalized as it sounds. SDM seems to fail frequently on the 16-50 and 50-135 (possibly due to the dual focus ability?), but on the primes and the DA 17-70 and even the DA *60-250, the reports of failure are quite infrequent. The DA 17-70 is even reported as being "fast focusing."

There is no doubt that Pentax needs to rework/fix the DA * zooms. These are bread and butter zooms that need to work well and be dependable.
01-21-2011, 05:42 AM   #40
Senior Member




Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Mount Shasta
Posts: 185
Pentax's refusal to even acknowledge that SDM lenses have a problem has turned what could have been positive coup for company responsibility into a scandal. Reading posts from SDM lens buyers who factor in the cost of repair with the anticipation that they will fail feels like lunacy. I own only one older Pentax lens as I will not buy into SDM and have chosen Sigma and Tamron over Pentax until the company admits the problem. Pentax makes the best bang for buck cameras on the planet, but when you cannot buy the top end lens from your company, however, it might be time to pick up your chips and find another game. Dear Pentax, you must say something.

P.S. I also shoot professionally and always bring backup.
01-21-2011, 06:35 AM   #41
Pentaxian
eddie1960's Avatar

Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Toronto
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 12,875
QuoteOriginally posted by Rondec Quote
The issue is really not as generalized as it sounds. SDM seems to fail frequently on the 16-50 and 50-135 (possibly due to the dual focus ability?), but on the primes and the DA 17-70 and even the DA *60-250, the reports of failure are quite infrequent. The DA 17-70 is even reported as being "fast focusing."

There is no doubt that Pentax needs to rework/fix the DA * zooms. These are bread and butter zooms that need to work well and be dependable.

I have to agree the 16-50 and 50-135 would be in my kit if I thought they were reliable I can't be spending that kind of cash for a lens that has a history of breakdown. Not sure why the screw focus ability is disabled, you would think this would be a simple firmware fix so if something does happen you can still AF.
I know the lenses have good iq and are good performers but as it sits i wouldn't buy them and would more likely invest in sigma or tamron pairs, which kind of defeat the purpose of WR on my kit
01-21-2011, 10:19 AM - 3 Likes   #42
Site Supporter
Site Supporter
Pål Jensen's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Norway
Photos: Albums
Posts: 3,371
QuoteOriginally posted by wlachan Quote
I am afraid the LX system was the only genuine attempt for the pro market, and that was almost 3 decades ago. But even for the amateur market, Pentax is not doing any good with the never fixed issues like SDM, poorly made flashes, loose screws on LIMITED lenses, optical misalignment, misaligned digital level, weak low EV AF, non-exist AF tracking, and now the K-5 sensor stain. Either the Pentax management is unaware of the issues, or they have no intention spending more funds on them, since selling the camera division is always on the list.


1. Pentax have been continously present in the professional market for over 42 years with their MF outfits. It had one of the highest professional share in the industry; more than 50% of the buyers were pros
2. I have never heard about loose screws on Limited lenses. Mine are routinely banged about in a vibrating boat and loose screws have never been an issue.
3. No more misalignment and quality control issue than what you find with the competition. I have a book by four nature photographers who says that the main experience with shooting Canon is all the lenses you'll have to go through before you find a good sample.
4. My Pentax AF in one second in a room lit with one 25W bulb.
5. All Pentax I've tried can track a bird in flight. Many photographers can't hoverer and blame the camera...
01-21-2011, 10:26 AM - 1 Like   #43
Veteran Member
RBellavance's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Near Montréal, Canada
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 1,716
QuoteOriginally posted by eddie1960 Quote
I have to agree the 16-50 and 50-135 would be in my kit if I thought they were reliable I can't be spending that kind of cash for a lens that has a history of breakdown. Not sure why the screw focus ability is disabled, you would think this would be a simple firmware fix so if something does happen you can still AF.
I know the lenses have good iq and are good performers but as it sits i wouldn't buy them and would more likely invest in sigma or tamron pairs, which kind of defeat the purpose of WR on my kit
I know how you feel, I recently bought the Sigma 50-150/2.8 instead of the DA*50-135. The Sigma was cheaper, of course, but what really tipped the scale was the AF slowness of the DA* and the spectre of SDM failure. Maybe Sigma's HSM will turn out not bulletproof either, but the lens is covered by a 10-year(!) warranty in Canada...
01-21-2011, 10:27 AM - 1 Like   #44
Pentaxian
eddie1960's Avatar

Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Toronto
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 12,875
QuoteOriginally posted by Pål Jensen Quote
1. Pentax have been continously present in the professional market for over 42 years with their MF outfits. It had one of the highest professional share in the industry; more than 50% of the buyers were pros
2. I have never heard about loose screws on Limited lenses. Mine are routinely banged about in a vibrating boat and loose screws have never been an issue.
3. No more misalignment and quality control issue than what you find with the competition. I have a book by four nature photographers who says that the main experience with shooting Canon is all the lenses you'll have to go through before you find a good sample.
4. My Pentax AF in one second in a room lit with one 25W bulb.
5. All Pentax I've tried can track a bird in flight. Many photographers can't hoverer and blame the camera...

Bang on

I was going to mention MF until i caught your response. Even currently they are back in that game with a camera that will change the whole category (645D)

+1 rep for this answer
01-21-2011, 10:27 AM - 1 Like   #45
Pentaxian
Cambo's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Vancouver, BC
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 940
Yay, Pål...

QuoteOriginally posted by Pål Jensen Quote
1. Pentax have been continously present in the professional market for over 42 years with their MF outfits. It had one of the highest professional share in the industry; more than 50% of the buyers were pros
2. I have never heard about loose screws on Limited lenses. Mine are routinely banged about in a vibrating boat and loose screws have never been an issue.
3. No more misalignment and quality control issue than what you find with the competition. I have a book by four nature photographers who says that the main experience with shooting Canon is all the lenses you'll have to go through before you find a good sample.
4. My Pentax AF in one second in a room lit with one 25W bulb.
5. All Pentax I've tried can track a bird in flight. Many photographers can't hoverer and blame the camera...
right on as always.

Cameron
Reply

Bookmarks
  • Submit Thread to Facebook Facebook
  • Submit Thread to Twitter Twitter
  • Submit Thread to Digg Digg
Tags - Make this thread easier to find by adding keywords to it!
bazaar, k-mount, pentax lens, slr lens
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
More Pentax for Harper's BAZAAR Magazine benjikan Photographic Technique 24 05-11-2011 11:17 PM
Harper's BAZAAR High Fashion "Haute Couture" benjikan Photographic Industry and Professionals 2 01-30-2011 11:18 AM
Pentax in Harper's BAZAAR Again benjikan Pentax News and Rumors 12 12-19-2010 09:47 AM
Pentax in Harper's BAZAAR Behind the Scenes Video & Images benjikan Pentax News and Rumors 9 09-27-2010 04:35 AM
Harper's BAZAAR Making of Video Final benjikan Photographic Industry and Professionals 1 06-27-2010 01:38 PM



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 03:15 AM. | See also: NikonForums.com, CanonForums.com part of our network of photo forums!
  • Red (Default)
  • Green
  • Gray
  • Dark
  • Dark Yellow
  • Dark Blue
  • Old Red
  • Old Green
  • Old Gray
  • Dial-Up Style
Hello! It's great to see you back on the forum! Have you considered joining the community?
register
Creating a FREE ACCOUNT takes under a minute, removes ads, and lets you post! [Dismiss]
Top