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03-25-2008, 11:47 PM   #1
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Which Pentax-branded lenses are based on third-party (optical) design?

Extensive search did not reveal definitive answer save for the 18-250mm publicly acknowledged to be a rebadged Tamron.

Are among these:

DA 10-17mm
DA 12-24mm
DA 14mm
DA 35mm Macro Limited
PENTAX-DA* 16-50mm f/2.8 ED AL[IF]SDM
smc PENTAX-DA* 50-135mm f/2.8 ED AL[IF]SDM
smc PENTAX DA 18-250mm F3.5-6.3 ED AL [IF]

Yes/no, any others?

Nothing implied, just getting the record straight.

03-26-2008, 12:58 AM   #2
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As far as I know, non of these are "based" on any third party optical design. Some of them were co-developed w/ Tokina, but each makes their own versions.

The DA18250 is probably a rebadged Tamron one, Pentax didn't design or make them.
03-26-2008, 01:44 AM   #3
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I've seen the Tamron 14 and have the DA 14. They are definately not the same design. To start with, the DA 14 is not full frame, the Tamron is. Like frank said, some of them (the 10-17, 12-24, 35 limited, and the two DA* zooms) were co-developed with Tokina. The 18-250 is (to my knowledge) the only rebadged lens in the current lineup. There have been others in the past (the FA 28-200 and FA 100 f/3.5 macro are the two that I know of). This site is a good lens resource.

edit: just remembered that even though Tokina offers a 10-17 variant, the original idea was from the pentax FA 17-28 fisheye zoom for film cameras.
03-26-2008, 03:17 AM   #4
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If you want to get really anal about this, you could all say they were based on other designs...The f1.4 50mm (pick one) is basically a Zeiss Planar.

03-27-2008, 11:15 AM   #5
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DA35 what is it based on?
03-27-2008, 03:36 PM   #6
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It appears to be a new design, as Pentax has not had a 35mm macro before. I Don't know if it is co-designed with Tokina or not.
03-27-2008, 05:56 PM   #7
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Tokina released a 35mm macro with what appears to be the same optical formula (9 elements in 8 groups), number of aperture blades (9), and if you round the minimum focusing distance to 2 decimal places they both have the same min focusing distance (0.14m-- Tokina lists 5.5"/1.4m while pentax lists 0.456"/0.139m). While I can't think of a place where they've specifically stated that this was a co-design, given past history and the similarities between the two lenses I'd say it's a safe bet to assume it is a co-design.
03-28-2008, 01:28 AM   #8
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The DA35 Macro is basically an FA35 with an added rear group.

The M28/2 is based on the Olympus 28/2.
The M85/2 is based on the Olympus 85/2.
At least it appear so to me.

The 50/4 Macro is based on the Tessar 1902.
The A100/4 Macro is based on the Heliar 1902.
The K,A135/2.8 are based on the Ernostar 1924.
All are based on the Cooke Triplet 1893.

03-28-2008, 05:10 AM   #9
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Well if Pentax is in bed with Tokina so much, they just need to go ahead and put out a DA* 11-16mm f/2.8 aka the new Tokina AT-X 116 PRO DX.
03-28-2008, 06:13 AM   #10
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The Takumar 58/2.4 and the SMC-Takumar 100/4 Macro are copies of the Heliar lens developed by Dr. Hans Harting for Voiglšnder in 1900.

The famous SMC Pentax 15/3.5 aspherical ultra-wide was jointly developed with Zeiss and was based on the Zeiss Distagon 15/3.5 lens for the Contarex SLR. Here's a link to the fascinating story of this lens on Marco Cavina's website: http://www.worldlingo.com/S1790.5/translation?wl_srclang=it&wl_trglang=en&wl...tax/00_pag.htm

The cooperation between Zeiss and Pentax also produced the SMC-Pentax 28/2, which was based on the Distagon wide angle design from Zeiss (and not on an Olympus design).

Since then, quite a few lenses sold under the Pentax name have been developed by other companies (mostly cheap customer grade zooms) or are the result of joint efforts between Pentax and other constructors (mainly Tokina in the recent years).

Cheers!

Abbazz
03-30-2008, 07:14 PM   #11
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So the opinions of what this "cooperation" or "co-design" might be, range from actually working together on a new design to copying an existing one and everything in-between?
And there are no facts to prove one way or the other?

OK, let's assume for a moment this "cooperation" is for a new design.
Did Tokina and Pentax work as equal partners during all phases of the inception, initial design and subsequent development?
Or maybe one of them was primarily responsible consulting the other one only when needed/desired?

Here is a simple observation.
To my knowledge, the only lens Pentax has officially acknowledged to have co-developed and co-designed is the smc PENTAX DA FISH-EYE 10-17mm F3.5-4.5 ED [IF].
AFAIK, this is the only lens Pentax has announced and delivered before the Tokina's version of it, on November 30th, 2005.
Tokina announced their lens 7 months later.
Tokina might have delayed their version of the lens because they need to account for two mounts, not one.
Or maybe because the bulk of the initial design was done by Pentax so they were ahead to start with.

In any case, since then it is Tokina who first and well ahead announces and delivers the supposedly "co-designed" lenses, not Pentax.
And Pentax does not claim "co-design" anymore.

So I would guess that with the exception of the fish-eye, Tokina is the primary designer of the common lenses.
Pentax probably participates with just consulting (if anything at all) in the initial design.

Why is that important to me?
For a number of reasons, only one of which is to predict future Pentax offerings.
Far important is that (as it is well-known), Tokina designs its lenses independent of a particular mount.
The answer to what extent this "one size fits all" approach limits performance enhancements for any particular mount (including the K mount) -- I will rather leave to the experts in optical design here.

However, that such performance limitations exist, might be the reason why the new DA* 16-50mm f/2.8 did not bring the expected better performance on comparable features over the Pentax originally designed DA 16-45mm f/4.
01-13-2009, 01:25 AM   #12
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"And there are no facts to prove one way or the other?"

There are facts there is just no available facts.
Companies hardly ever reveal such things.
Product differentiation, real or imagined, is the name of the game in marketing.
01-13-2009, 01:43 AM   #13
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Nobody seems to have noticed or mentioned that the D FA 100 f/2.8 and the Tokina AT-X M100 AF PRO D are identical, spec-wise.
01-13-2009, 02:23 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by ftpaddict Quote
Nobody seems to have noticed or mentioned that the D FA 100 f/2.8 and the Tokina AT-X M100 AF PRO D are identical, spec-wise.
didn't they both get that off another designer?

QuoteOriginally posted by zaurus Quote
Far important is that (as it is well-known), Tokina designs its lenses independent of a particular mount.
The answer to what extent this "one size fits all" approach limits performance enhancements for any particular mount (including the K mount) -- I will rather leave to the experts in optical design here.
I don't know how fair that is, the voigtlanders I owned in Pentax (and nikon) and the zeiss lenses, all work fantastically well and they are available in multiple mounts.. Not to mention Pentax is obviously customising their versions of the Tokina/Pentax lenses more than any other mount, though by all accounts they seem to work fine on all mounts..
01-13-2009, 05:40 AM   #15
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Just found his thread. About the Tokina 35mm Macro, they don't list it on the Tokinalens.com website. What does this mean?

No wait, its on the Japanese website. I guess they are not making alot of them now.

The reason I care about shared lenses, I want to know how fast Pentax can make full frame pro zooms if a FF body is coming out. It appears Pentax make most of the zooms with Tokina together, this is a good thing.
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