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10-24-2011, 08:01 PM   #1
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Discontinued Zeiss PK and Voigtlander

Cosina lenses (Zeiss PK, Voigtlander) are discontinued. Do they have a reason for that? The new Pentax-Ricoh will buy (some of) those designs and manufacture them?
(I intent to buy a SLR, and I admire the K-5 specs, but D7000 still has the opportunity of using Zeiss and Voigtlander)

10-24-2011, 08:11 PM   #2
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Because there apparently was no market for expensive manual-focus lenses in the K-mount.

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10-24-2011, 08:34 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
Because there apparently was no market for expensive manual-focus lenses in the K-mount.
I am quite sure much of this is because there are an abundance of manual-focus lenses exist for use with Pentax already!

@ the OP
You can buy the older Contax/Yashica Carl Zeiss lenses and convert them to Pentax mount with a Leitax mount conversion. All you loose is the A setting, and save quite a bit of money while your at it. I must say my favorite prime besides the FA* 3002.8 is the Zeiss 28mm 2.0!

Or if you are highly infatuated with Zeiss then look into Sony. You get AF with Zeiss then! But they take an arm and a leg away from you. Note that these lenses are more plasticky than the manual-focus versions and there is no option for weather sealing...
10-24-2011, 09:20 PM - 3 Likes   #4
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One problem is with the lens models that Cosina has decided to re-release first in the Voigtlander line. They were 20mm, 40mm, and 58mm. All of these have AF counterparts from Pentax: DA Limited 21 and 40, and DA* 55. The Nokton (58mm) was still a great value as its price was comparable to the FA50, but it had a better build and slightly better optics; but the 20 and 40 were too similar in pricing and features to the Limiteds so I am not surprised that they didn't sell as expected. And I'm not counting the 90mm because Cosina dropped the lines soon after its release, so its sales couldn't have factored in.

However, if Cosina would have come up with their longer lenses - the 125 and 180, which have practically no competition from Pentax, I think they would have had better sales. AFAICT, the Nokton sold pretty well. Unfortunately, now we'll not see those longer lenses, unless Cosina has a change of heart in the future.

As for the Zeiss lenses - the argument that there wasn't a market for them holds better in their case - unlike the Voigtlanders which had competitive prices, the Zeiss were pretty expensive and had competition from Voigtlanders to contend with in addition of everything else.

Another reason for the termination of these lines must have been the fact that Pentax doesn't offer (or plans to offer) a FF camera, which makes irrelevant one important advantages of these lenses - on a FF camera they would have much less competition than on APS, so their prices would feel more appropriate.

The abundance of manual focus lenses is not a factor because they work on Canon as well as they work on Pentax and that doesn't stop Cosina from continuing production for EF mount. Not to mention that very few old lenses could compete optically with the CVZ ones, especially in the case of wide angles.

It's going to be interesting to see if Cosina will re-release the 125 and 180 for the other mounts, or whether they'll stop that line to let the Zeiss lenses seem more appealing.

I agree that the availability of these lenses for a mount can be a good reason to select a mount. Best choice would be to go for a Nikon D700 and use them as they were meant to be used.

10-24-2011, 09:49 PM   #5
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LC, you hit every salient point I was going to make. Great post.
10-24-2011, 11:57 PM   #6
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One more reason to stop the K mount is that Cosina joined the 4/3 consortium. They probably wanted to make some room for their new products.
10-25-2011, 12:37 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Zav Quote
One more reason to stop the K mount is that Cosina joined the 4/3 consortium. They probably wanted to make some room for their new products.
I doubt this was a main consideration. It's not saving them much to drop a mount when they were reusing the optical design and most of the mechanical assembly in the production of lenses for it - the only way it makes sense is if the production for that mount didn't sell well, which gets us back to the sales motivation. And it's not like their m4/3 output consists of cheap lenses that sell like hot bread. Furthermore, Samyang can put out m4/3 lenses without working a sweat or having to cut production for some mounts - why would Cosina's production be so limited?

QuoteOriginally posted by Aegon Quote
LC, you hit every salient point I was going to make. Great post.
Thanks!
10-25-2011, 04:54 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Laurentiu Cristofor Quote
I doubt this was a main consideration. It's not saving them much to drop a mount when they were reusing the optical design and most of the mechanical assembly in the production of lenses for it - the only way it makes sense is if the production for that mount didn't sell well, which gets us back to the sales motivation.
I said "One more", pretty much agreeing that poor sales was probably the main motivation...
Regarding the comparison between Samyang and Cosina, there are too many parameters into account to just say "if this one can do it, the other can do it as well".

10-25-2011, 07:16 AM   #9
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Thank you, guys
Considering how much I want to spend for my toys,
I think I have to decide (thank you, LC) the format, and then the mount.
Is the difference between APS and FF so visible at wide-angle?
10-25-2011, 03:09 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by bozianul Quote
T
Is the difference between APS and FF so visible at wide-angle?
What difference?

For me, the main advantage of FF would be the better high ISO performance. All other things are minor and arguable.

With respect to wide angles, you just get a larger selection of primes. For example, for Pentax, you have the following prime lenses: 14mm, 15mm, 21mm - they correspond to 21mm, 23mm, and 31mm in terms of FF FOV - so you do not have prime lenses that can give you the equivalent FOV of a 14mm or 18mm on FF. Thus, on FF you have more selections of prime lenses in wide angle category. But given that on APS you have pretty good zoom selections: Sigma 8-16, Sigma 10-20, Pentax 12-24, it could be argued that there is no huge advantage for FF here overall as you can still cover the same focal ranges.
10-25-2011, 03:19 PM - 1 Like   #11
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Depth of field and angle of view when composing are two other factors that come into play when comparing formats. It's not something easily summarized, so I recommend reading the wikipedia article on depth of field, in particular the section on DOF vs. format size.
10-25-2011, 03:30 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by atlnq9 Quote
@ the OP
You can buy the older Contax/Yashica Carl Zeiss lenses and convert them to Pentax mount with a Leitax mount conversion. All you loose is the A setting, and save quite a bit of money while your at it. I must say my favorite prime besides the FA* 3002.8 is the Zeiss 28mm 2.0!
Ummm… you can Leitax convert some of the C/Y lenses, not all. I've got a 85/1.4 AE I'd love to convert, but Leitax only does the MM version of that lens.
10-25-2011, 07:47 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by bimjo Quote
Ummm… you can Leitax convert some of the C/Y lenses, not all. I've got a 85/1.4 AE I'd love to convert, but Leitax only does the MM version of that lens.
Sell it on ebay for $100 less than the MM version, upgrade, and grow up so you can stop whining.

QuoteOriginally posted by Laurentiu Cristofor Quote
Another reason for the termination of these lines must have been the fact that Pentax doesn't offer (or plans to offer) a FF camera, which makes irrelevant one important advantages of these lenses - on a FF camera they would have much less competition than on APS, so their prices would feel more appropriate.
There are a lot of us who prefer FF lens for two reasons. First lens performance is always the best in the center making them amazing on aps-c. Second we all hope and fully believe that one day Pentax will release FF dslr.

And I still think the availability of Pentax MF lenses keeps several users away. Kept me from buying the 85 since I use to own the A*, the K 28 2.0 is the same as the older Zeiss 28 2.0 (which I own). The 25 is well known to be a weak performer. The 21 isn't that much better than the A 20 2.8. Everybody has a good old 50mm. All at lower prices...
10-25-2011, 11:56 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by atlnq9 Quote
Sell it on ebay for $100 less than the MM version, upgrade, and grow up so you can stop whining.
Nah, I think I'll just use it on a NEX or a GXR instead. Thanks for the suggestion though.
10-26-2011, 10:38 PM   #15
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Thank you again Laurentiu. It seems obvious to me what happens with wide angle lenses on both formats, but only after you wrote it down. You're perfectly right.
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