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09-28-2011, 10:52 PM   #1
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Is AIV really any worse than MIJ?

People generally make a point of saying MIJ in their listings of the Limiteds and there seems to be a tacit agreement that that's a good thing, but is there actually any solid evidence that this is the case?

Has anyone compared Assembled in Vietnam and Made in Japan copies of some limiteds? I've had both of 31ltd though not at the same time and the pics they produce look the same to me, but I can't be sure.

Anyone? What are we basing this distinction on?

09-28-2011, 11:08 PM   #2
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I have owned and come across a few FA77 & FA31 since they were released, both MIJ & AIV. No, MIJ weren't better made or assembled. In fact, I have come across many poorly assembled MIJ FA lenses OOB, some were so obvious it was hard to believe. If I were in the market for a new Pentax lens or Limited, AIV would be perfectly fine for me so long as they weren't defective. It's a draw of luck, which you need more with Pentax, but that's just my opinion.
09-28-2011, 11:36 PM   #3
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I have AIV and MIJ lenses. While these are different lenses (hence not truly comparable), the built quality of all the lenses is absolutely identical IMO.
09-28-2011, 11:48 PM   #4
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They are exactly the same to use.
It is only the "perceived" higher resale value for the MIJ FA ltds I have noticed.

So.... do you buy your lenses primarily to use them? Or do you buy your lenses primarily to sell them?

09-28-2011, 11:53 PM   #5
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I have also both MIJ and AIV lenses. The only difference I can see is the lens pouch: leather pouch for the MIJ lenses and faux leather for the AIV ones. No difference whatsoever in the lens itself.

Cheers!

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09-28-2011, 11:56 PM   #6
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Seller's do make a point of noting that they are listing the MIJ version because alot of consumers prefer the MIJ copys and/ or dont mind paying the extra premium they are worth. Even though they are the same lenses.
09-29-2011, 12:42 AM - 1 Like   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by DanielT74 Quote
Is AIV really any worse than MIJ?
From the subject line of this thread, I thought we were talking in code

Got the gist of it now though.
09-29-2011, 03:06 AM   #8
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Some have claimed the quality control is not as stringent for AIV lenses, something I cannot verify.

09-29-2011, 03:49 AM   #9
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Made in Japan has been PROVEN to be better by evidence.

Wildman, a Pentaxian on this forum discovered the secret and posted it some time ago:

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-slr-lens-discussion/157699-true.html
09-29-2011, 04:35 AM - 1 Like   #10
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Don't go there guys. I just did and wasted 5 precious minutes of my life!
09-29-2011, 05:00 AM   #11
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The place where an item is made is not really relevant, what IS relevant is the level of quality control, and that's in the end of the product design team : manufacturing tolerances, production tests, qualifications, uncertainties management, etc. I work for a North American telecom manufacturing company, and a good part of our products are designed here but assembled in China. If I do my job well, it will not matter where the product is assembled.
09-29-2011, 05:38 AM   #12
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Fact/fiction, one opinion I heard was that the tolerances for assembly weren't quite as stringent in Vietnam. That could just as easily have been based on the assumption that Japan, being the more "sophisticated society" was more likely to be able to do the better job.
Note, an opinion I heard and not my own.
As for that other thread, quite the funny read, but then I had 5 minutes to kill.
09-29-2011, 08:50 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by wlachan Quote
I have owned and come across a few FA77 & FA31 since they were released, both MIJ & AIV. No, MIJ weren't better made or assembled. In fact, I have come across many poorly assembled MIJ FA lenses OOB, some were so obvious it was hard to believe. If I were in the market for a new Pentax lens or Limited, AIV would be perfectly fine for me so long as they weren't defective. It's a draw of luck, which you need more with Pentax, but that's just my opinion.
I have MIJ FA43mm and it is miles better than my AIV FA31mm, which frankly is too soft and requires a large micro adjustment. This is just my experience. Have never seen the MIJ FA31mm to compare it to. I did see some fantastic AIV FA31mm images on this forum posted by someone who rented the FA31 for travel.

Were any of the bad MIJ copies you came across later serial numbers? I've read somewhere that the best FA31mm were those with early serial numbers.
09-29-2011, 08:54 AM   #14
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I would think that's largely because FA43 != FA31 ... apple != orange

QuoteOriginally posted by pz1fan Quote
I have MIJ FA43mm and it is miles better than my AIV FA31mm, which frankly is too soft and requires a large micro adjustment. This is just my experience. Have never seen the MIJ FA31mm to compare it to. I did see some fantastic AIV FA31mm images on this forum posted by someone who rented the FA31 for travel.

Were any of the bad MIJ copies you came across later serial numbers? I've read somewhere that the best FA31mm were those with early serial numbers.
09-29-2011, 09:00 AM   #15
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I think the only faulty Pentax lens I ever had was a MIJ FA*300 f2.8, but I didn't have any AIV either. I thought they should have checked every lens for one that expensive, but I guess that's too much to ask.
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