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03-23-2008, 06:11 AM   #1
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Pentax lenses type

I am in the Pentax world for about a week and I am totally confused about the pentax lenses available. I know the FA and DA series ( being the film-based autofocus and digital autofocus), but what about the F, A, M, F DA and many other series?? I know about the K, which is the grand daddy of all the bayonet Pentax lenses, but that's about all! I am in the Canon world where the only thing that is useable ( without adapters ) is the EF lenses - simple and straightforward!

Thanks,
tipsy

03-23-2008, 06:27 AM   #2
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Welcome to Pentax and to the forums. In short, you have two mounts, K and M42. M42 is the old screw mount which can be used with adapters and K is everything else. There are different variants of K like the newest KAF2 that has the SDM motor in it, but for the most part as long as its a K mount of some sort it will fit any K-mount body.

Pentax (K-mount) Lens Series:
K = Original series of K-mount lenses
(Not actually labeled "K" anywhere — just "SMC Pentax")
M = 2nd series of K-mount lenses — Generally more compact designs
A = First lenses allowing shutter-preferred and program autoexposure
A* = Premium lens line of the A series
AF = First autofocus lens — Only works with ME-F camera
F = First practical auto-focus series of lenses
F* = Premium lens line of the F series
FA = Autofocus lenses with digital data chip in the lens
FA* = Premium lens line of the FA series
FA Limited = Ultra-premium line of the FA series
FA-J = Budget autofocus lens line — Plastic lens mount; No aperture ring
D-FA = Lens series specifically for digital — Full-frame; With aperture ring
DA = Lens series specifically for digital — Reduced frame/Full-frame; No aperture ring
DA* = Premium lens line of the DA series — SDM focusing capability
DA Limited = Ultra-premium line of the DA series — No aperture ring; No SDM

In short, you can use any Pentax lens ever made for a SLR on your camera.

Here, take a look at this, Pentax Imaging - Lens Compatability Chart the newer bodies are not listed but they fall under the 'can use any lens' catagory which you can see here The Pentax Camera Lens Compatibility Chart

Pentax as described by Porters,
QuoteQuote:
"The current line of Pentax digital camera lenses is called the DA series. These lenses have the same mounting style as the Pentax K-mount lenses for 35mm ameras, but have a reduced area of coverage since Pentax DSLR imaging sensors are smaller than 35mm film. As a result, if a DA lens is used on a Pentax 35mm camera, there will be significant vignetting. DA lenses don’t have a mechanical aperture ring, so meter coupling may be quite limited depending on the film camera’s aperture control requirements. Perhaps the most backward-compatible camera brand, a new Pentax digital SLR camera will accept a lens made for one of the first Pentax K bayonet-mount 35mm cameras back in the mid-1970s. If the lens has auto aperture control (Pentax KA) and autofocus (Pentax KAF) capability, those features will couple to the D-SLRs controls. A Pentax digital SLR will even accept old Pentax screw-mount lenses made for cameras in the 1960s and early ‘70s, provided a Pentax Lens Mount Adapter B is used. Pentax is now collaborating with Samsung on digital SLR design, so present (and most likely, future) Samsung digital SLR cameras use the same lens mounting system as Pentax."

Last edited by Buddha Jones; 03-23-2008 at 06:37 AM. Reason: Added information.
03-23-2008, 06:44 AM   #3
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the M series also had a small selection of * lenses.
03-23-2008, 06:46 AM   #4
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QuoteQuote:
In short, you can use any Pentax lens ever made for a SLR on your camera
you might have some trouble fitting a 110 lens on your DSLR.


03-23-2008, 09:31 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by seamuis Quote


you might have some trouble fitting a 110 lens on your DSLR.
No problem at all. Just take one of your unused body caps (not the translucent ones that come on the camera, the black ones that click in like a lens) and drill a 110 size mount in the center of it. Glue the 110 lens into the hole, and voila! it fits! Of course, it will only focus out to about 3 1/2 inches, but what the heck! it fits!
03-24-2008, 06:03 AM   #6
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QuoteQuote:
No problem at all. Just take one of your unused body caps (not the translucent ones that come on the camera, the black ones that click in like a lens) and drill a 110 size mount in the center of it. Glue the 110 lens into the hole, and voila! it fits! Of course, it will only focus out to about 3 1/2 inches, but what the heck! it fits!
I wont be trying that.
03-24-2008, 11:36 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Buddha Jones Quote
Welcome to Pentax and to the forums. In short, you have two mounts, K and M42. M42 is the old screw mount which can be used with adapters and K is everything else. There are different variants of K like the newest KAF2 that has the SDM motor in it, but for the most part as long as its a K mount of some sort it will fit any K-mount body.

Pentax (K-mount) Lens Series:
K = Original series of K-mount lenses
(Not actually labeled "K" anywhere — just "SMC Pentax")
M = 2nd series of K-mount lenses — Generally more compact designs
A = First lenses allowing shutter-preferred and program autoexposure
A* = Premium lens line of the A series
AF = First autofocus lens — Only works with ME-F camera
F = First practical auto-focus series of lenses
F* = Premium lens line of the F series
FA = Autofocus lenses with digital data chip in the lens
FA* = Premium lens line of the FA series
FA Limited = Ultra-premium line of the FA series
FA-J = Budget autofocus lens line — Plastic lens mount; No aperture ring
D-FA = Lens series specifically for digital — Full-frame; With aperture ring
DA = Lens series specifically for digital — Reduced frame/Full-frame; No aperture ring
DA* = Premium lens line of the DA series — SDM focusing capability
DA Limited = Ultra-premium line of the DA series — No aperture ring; No SDM

In short, you can use any Pentax lens ever made for a SLR on your camera.

Here, take a look at this, Pentax Imaging - Lens Compatability Chart the newer bodies are not listed but they fall under the 'can use any lens' catagory which you can see here The Pentax Camera Lens Compatibility Chart

Pentax as described by Porters,
Phew! Sure very complicated compared to the Canon line - in which case just EF or EFS line. Nothing else fits without adapters!

tipsy
03-24-2008, 11:38 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by tipsy1956 Quote
Phew! Sure very complicated compared to the Canon line - in which case just EF or EFS line. Nothing else fits without adapters!

tipsy
no.. we have K and M42. M42 requires an adapter. all the other designations are just TYPES of lenses, just like an L, IS, USM, DC, DG, EX, etc lens.

03-31-2008, 04:34 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by OniFactor Quote
no.. we have K and M42. M42 requires an adapter. all the other designations are just TYPES of lenses, just like an L, IS, USM, DC, DG, EX, etc lens.
Not quite. All those EF lenses are autofocus. All worked normally (except the MPE65 macro which is unique, the TSE lenses ( only 3 of them ) which are by nature needs to be manual focus ) on all the EOS bodies except for EFS lenses.

Those L, IS, and USM are canon terminogy : L for pro level ( in pentax term is * ), IS is image stablization, USM are ultrasonic motors ( ie SDM for pentax ). DC, DG, EX are Sigma terms for their lenses ( DC=digital body only, DG = digital enhanced coating, EX - pro version of Sigma lenses ).

Here in Pentax alone you have all the way from manual focus, to autofocus, to certain type that works in certain mode etc. certainly a lot more variation.

tipsy
03-31-2008, 05:27 AM   #10
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Yes there are several varitations but remember you're looking at lenses that date back to the 1950's to today from that list. Btw Buddha, that list should be a sticky somewhere for new Pentax owners, just add M*.

Once you get familiar with the different designations for each series, it actually makes it very easy to figure out if the lens is one you want to buy. The varitaions are because Pentax is so backward compatable and they could not have foreseen the digital age when a K mount or M42 was developed. So each series had different advances in connections to the camera.
03-31-2008, 01:03 PM   #11
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Hmmm is there anything concrete in the Pentax lenses model names that dictates reduced frame/APS-C only?
03-31-2008, 01:23 PM   #12
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There's a bit of a weakness in the model number system. The DA lenses are supposed to be all reduced image circle lenses. But some have reported that the DA*200mm will work fine on a 35mm (full Frame) camera without vignetting. So there may be a few that will work FF but it's safe to consider that a DA lens was designed for digital and will most likely have a reduced image circle.

if you check the Pentax web site, they state that the DA series is "designed exclusively for digital" and the write up on the DA*200mm is
"The high performance DA* 200mm ED (IF) lens incorporates an SDM system which creates a smoother, quieter auto focus. Featuring a Quick-shift Focus System, switching from auto focus to manual is instantaneous. Developed specifically for PENTAX digital SLRs, the DA* 200mm ED (IF) SDM lens has PENTAX SP coating which protects the exposed lens elements...."

So even though some have reported it's fine as a full frame lens. Pentax doesn't market any of the DA or DA* lenses as full frame.
03-31-2008, 02:14 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by tipsy1956 Quote
Not quite. All those EF lenses are autofocus. All worked normally (except the MPE65 macro which is unique, the TSE lenses ( only 3 of them ) which are by nature needs to be manual focus ) on all the EOS bodies except for EFS lenses.

Those L, IS, and USM are canon terminogy : L for pro level ( in pentax term is * ), IS is image stablization, USM are ultrasonic motors ( ie SDM for pentax ). DC, DG, EX are Sigma terms for their lenses ( DC=digital body only, DG = digital enhanced coating, EX - pro version of Sigma lenses ).

Here in Pentax alone you have all the way from manual focus, to autofocus, to certain type that works in certain mode etc. certainly a lot more variation.

tipsy
and you're saying different than what i am, how? i'm saying that the mount type is simply either a K bayonet, or m42 screw type, for Pentax. the bayonet for Minolta and Sony AF is the alpha mount, for their manual focus, its the M(d)(c) mount. for Canon, there's the R, FD, FL, and EF and EF-S bayonet mounts, as well as the M39 screw mount. Nikon has the F bayonet mount, and Sigma's is the SA. inside of these mounts, there are designations as to the features and benefits of each type. let me draw a comparison.

K Mount is to the EOS Bayonet mount, in general.

DA is to EF-S tells you that it's digital coverage.

FA is to EF. tells you that it's full frame coverage auto-focus

M is to Canon's old FL

A is to canon's old FD

M42 is to the R or m39 canon mounts.

any lens with a * is to the L line, or EX sigma, it's just a grade.

we don't need an IS indicator, since all lenses are automatically stabilized, if you have in body, and SDM is included in the DA* lens only.

hopefully that makes it more clear, what i'm trying to say.
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