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03-15-2013, 06:31 AM   #1
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Does Pentax offer lenses with built-in motor?

I really tried to search but the whole lineup of k-mount lenses while offers great backwards compatibility, it is sort of confusing. I am trying to determine if Pentax offers lenses with built-in motors (equivalent of Nikon's AF-S or Canon's USM). I am mostly interested in 50mm prime with built in motor as opposed to screw drive type system.

Thanks.

03-15-2013, 06:34 AM   #2
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SDM and DC lenses have a built-in motor
03-15-2013, 06:40 AM   #3
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Thank you!

I guess the K30 camera is compatible with the SDM and DC lenses and can drive them?
03-15-2013, 06:42 AM   #4
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Absotively!

03-15-2013, 06:45 AM   #5
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Cool. Now, I just need to unload some audio gear to make funds for the new camera purchase.
03-15-2013, 07:48 AM   #6
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I have checked the current offerings in 50mm and 35mm from Pentax and I do not see any DC or SDM lenses. Does Pentax offer any 50mm or 35mm primes with built-in motor?
03-15-2013, 08:00 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by drabina Quote
I have checked the current offerings in 50mm and 35mm from Pentax and I do not see any DC or SDM lenses. Does Pentax offer any 50mm or 35mm primes with built-in motor?
They offer the DA* 55/1.4. But SDM and DC is non-existent when it comes to wide primes, the only thing that's there is the DA* 16-50. What's your main need for in lens motors? Sigma have a bunch of HSM lenses in the Pentax mount.
03-15-2013, 08:10 AM   #8
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Thanks for replies. The 55 f/1.4 is nice but too big. I am trying to put together a setup with small to medium size DSLR body and a small 35mm or 55mm prime lens. Sigma has the 50mm f/1.4 but while nice and bright, the price is $200 more than the f/1.8 lens.

Why built-in motor? I guess I got spoiled. I used to have Pentax setup before but the AF was too slow and unable to keep up with my kids. I have switched to Nikon (D60 with AF-S lenses) and liked the camera a lot (quiet and fast AF). I no longer have the Nikon and since I want to get back into DSLRs, I thought of Pentax. I just do not really want the screw drive type AF.

03-15-2013, 08:26 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by drabina Quote
I really tried to search but the whole lineup of k-mount lenses while offers great backwards compatibility, it is sort of confusing. I am trying to determine if Pentax offers lenses with built-in motors (equivalent of Nikon's AF-S or Canon's USM). I am mostly interested in 50mm prime with built in motor as opposed to screw drive type system.

Thanks.
Here is a list of all lenses with built-in lenses:

sdm Lenses - Pentax Lens Reviews & Lens Database

I can tell you right now, though, that with the exception of the 18-135mm and the 560mm, the motors in these lenses are noticeably slower than Nikon's AF.S. The fastest-focusing Pentax lenses generally have the screwdrive mechanism (which is still utilized by most new lenses) and short throws

But anyway, if a lens has DA*, SDM, or DC in it's name, then it's got a motor

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03-15-2013, 08:44 AM   #10
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Conundrum ?

QuoteOriginally posted by drabina Quote
I am trying to determine if Pentax offers lenses with built-in motors.[...] I am trying to put together a setup with ... a small 35mm or 55mm prime lens.
Is it a conundrum?

Lenses with built-in motors are typically larger than lenses without motor.

If you want small prime lenses, you should considering seriously the DA Ltd pancake lenses. Pentax has a superb line-up of pancake lenses among which:
DA15 mmLtd
DA21mm Ltd
DA40 mm Ltd (not to mention the DA40mm xs)
DA70 mm Ltd

I genuinely feel that you will miss some great lenses if you do not consider lenses without in-built motor.

Food for thought...
03-15-2013, 09:47 AM   #11
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Some of those wide primes have such short focus throws you really won't notice the internal screw too much. The macro lenses, of course are different. If I remember my rental period with the 21mm it was pretty darn quiet and quick.

The 18-135 is silent.
03-15-2013, 10:00 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by TER-OR Quote
Some of those wide primes have such short focus throws you really won't notice the internal screw too much. The macro lenses, of course are different. If I remember my rental period with the 21mm it was pretty darn quiet and quick.

The 18-135 is silent.
Yeah, lenses like the DA70/2.4 is so quick neither speed nor sound really is an issue.
03-15-2013, 11:18 AM   #13
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I didn't like the noise from the screwdrive at first, but as you guys point out, I don't even hear it in practice, because it is so short and kinda blends in with the shutter release.

And it is lightning fast. So I am quite happy with it.

I wonder, can anyone comment on the speed of the Pentax screwdrive, compared to either Nikon's screwdrive or in-lens motors? (for comparable lenses)
03-15-2013, 11:30 AM   #14
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Everyone I've lent my K-5 to comments on how quiet it is. He hasn't commented on focus screw noise. Two shoot 5D Mk2s, one a T3i, others are various I don't remember. The 5D shooters don't like how small it is - I do.... My nephew likes playing with my macros, he doesn't have a true macro lens (he shoots sports and weddings professionally). I do like the long zoom he has (won't ask how costly it is). I don't notice much of a noise difference, except for the shutter noise which seems louder.

Last edited by TER-OR; 03-15-2013 at 11:35 AM.
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