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09-10-2012, 07:09 PM   #1
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What do you make of the DA560 having a DC motor?

According to the official description of the DA560:
"The lens has a built-in DC autofocus motor and features Quick-shift which allows the photographer to manually fine tune focus without switching out of autofocus mode.. On cameras with no support for in-lens autofocus motors (*istD series, K100D and K110D) the lens works as a manual focus lens."
HD Pentax-DA 560mm F5.6 ED AW DC Reviews - DA Prime Lenses - Pentax Lens Reviews & Lens Database

This is only the second lens to have the DC designation as far as I know, the other being the DA18-135 DC WR. Given that SDM is controversial, has a documented high rate of focus motor failure, and the only other DC lens has a 0 reported rate of failure; what does Pentax bringing the DA560 out as a DC lens say about the future of silent focusing for Pentax?

Last edited by Docrwm; 05-06-2013 at 08:13 PM.
09-10-2012, 07:30 PM   #2
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Honestly, I feel that this is one of the great marketing stuff ups of Pentax. This says to me that the SDM cannot be trusted in this lens and the DC is more robust. Why have they not directly addressed this? Why is there no SDM 2? It seems that the SDM system is too fragile to handle the weight of the glass in this lens... but seriously, who would spend $7000 on an SDM lens? not me.
09-10-2012, 07:45 PM   #3
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WOW $7000 I just got a Canon 500 f4 IS for $4800 lol
09-10-2012, 07:47 PM   #4
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I guess a $6000 starting price would be more realistic. Then 1 or 2 year(s) from now it would hit around $5300...

09-10-2012, 07:54 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by GabrielFFontes Quote
I guess a $6000 starting price would be more realistic. Then 1 or 2 year(s) from now it would hit around $5300...
At this price there will only be less than 20 of these made/sold then in the future prices will go up to 10K for a used one.

Looks like a nice investment .
09-10-2012, 07:56 PM   #6
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I actually believed this lens would pop at a price tag of around $4000 to surprise us...i dream a lot.

Last edited by GabrielFFontes; 09-10-2012 at 08:24 PM.
09-10-2012, 08:11 PM   #7
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I predicted $3500!

If I were you guys, I wouldn't even bother speculating why this lens has DC and not SDM, and what the implications of that are. Pentax made it pretty clear at CP+ that they aren't going to keep us informed about their in-lens AF motors

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09-10-2012, 08:26 PM   #8
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I think they are nuts on the price. You could get a telescope that is longer and faster with an alt azimuth drive for that price.

09-10-2012, 08:56 PM - 2 Likes   #9
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With the Sigma 500/4.5 at $5k, and a nice 1.4x TC that AF works with also available, its obvious as pointed out by others that Pentax does NOT want to make and sell any of hte 560s. Just need to have it in the lineup. What a freakin waste.
09-10-2012, 09:01 PM   #10
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To me, the fact that it's APS-C (maybe has big enough image circle for FF...nobody knows since who will buy it?), and Pentax doesn't really have pro service, it seems like a halo product.

Look at car companies. Over the years there have been a lot of fancy cars made where their maker lost money on every single one, just because the company that made them wanted to seem cool and drive people to their showrooms. Just in recent memory you have the Chevy Volt which GM loses money on every single one. Mercedes lost a ton on every Maybach and not just because they didn't sell enough. The Bugatti Veyron at €1 million and up still cost VW even more to make. The list goes on.

So Pentax makes this $7k lens, and really the only buyer for such a lens is a media organization of some sort. But they need pro service which Pentax doesn't have. "Luxury" rich people buying it for fun have Leica, or Canikon FF. Don't get me wrong, I like Pentax a lot. But that's as a working stiff getting good bang for my buck. I'd say that's a lot of Pentax's customers. Sure, some of us can afford multiple $500+ Limited or * lenses but just as many buy a used body and play around with cheap manual lenses (or do both). $7k for one lens may as well be in another galaxy.

I know the 2x teleconverters out there aren't necessarily stellar, but the camera nerd set seems just as likely to buy an F/FA* 300/4.5 and whatever the best TC is. Or the DA* 60-250/4 or DA* 300/4 since Pz-AF 2x teleconverters are way more common than the 1.4/1.5x ones. Or hell even the Pentax 1.7x AF-A.

So as a halo product, yeah maybe people will say the DC motor means it doesn't match up to the Canikon real pro lenses. But at least it puts Pentax in the conversation rather than having the longest lens be 300mm. Which is at least worth something for marketing if nothing else.
09-11-2012, 12:58 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by msatlas Quote
maybe has big enough image circle for FF...nobody knows since who will buy it?
It will have a large enough image circle (according to Falk Lumo any lens with a FL several times greater than the required image circle will do so) but the questions are whether or not the optical quality is reasonably good out at the edges of the FF circle, and whether or not it is an entirely moot point given the current lack of a Pentax FF DSLR option.

I think that as usual many posters have seized on the negatives without pausing to look for positives. Sure I was surprised at the price, and I won't be buying one, but not because I think USD7000 is necessarily unreasonable for this lens. Of course we have to wait to see how it performs optically, but if it turns out to be superb, in the best Pentax tradition of *-grade supertelephotos, it is an intriguing offering. For one thing, in classic Pentax fashion there is no other manufacturer with a similar lens. The most similar option I can find is the Canon 400/4 plus 1.4x TC, a combination costing nearly as much. Optical performance being more or less equal I'd certainly rather have a 400/4 with matched TCs, especially given the oddly unweildy length of the DA 560, but if (and it's a big if) the DA 560 is a winner optically then I say good for Pentax.

How noisy is the DC motor going to be, though? That's important for wildlife photography, the main market niche for this lens.
09-11-2012, 01:23 AM   #12

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Its like one of those things in sales when you get an important customer who buys a lot of your products but now has a request for a custom item you don't really want to make but can't them down upfront.
So what do you do?
Quote a ridiculously high price
09-11-2012, 01:24 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by baro-nite Quote
The most similar option I can find is the Canon 400/4 plus 1.4x TC
Nikon do a $7K 500mm thats f/4 and VR
09-11-2012, 01:33 AM   #14

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I must say that this lens has several positive things going on. sertainly price range is still quite high, but there is not a thing that would say this is a bad lens. Worth price? you can shoot in several kind of weather, et the shot you are after? for Pros this could be selling point. Colud have a good crisp images at wide apertures...collapsible, so it is more easy to carry around. Has reliable motor(DC), with new AF system, might be winner...dunno. And it is brand new. If I had money, I'd like this even more. And this should end that whining about bentax longest lens is 300mm in production...It just seemd to change for another kind of chatter...
09-11-2012, 01:35 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by TOUGEFC Quote
Nikon do a $7000 500mm thats f/4 and VR
I agree that looks like a better value, although the list price is higher (indeed, the street price I can see is above US$8000), and we don't know what the street price of the DA 560 will be yet. I didn't mention it because I don't think of 500/4 as a similar specification to 560/5.6; it is a step above it -- a little shorter but a full stop faster.

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