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09-16-2013, 02:09 PM   #31
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
Since no one else has said it, I guess someone should, most of us didn't get into Pentax gear so we could buy expensive lenses. If I wanted to pay 7k for a lens, I would have gone Nikon or Canon. My 60-250, (100-400 FF) cost me 1800. That made me happy. Paying 7k for a lens for my own enjoyment would seem crazy. As someone said, heavy lenses will suck the life out of you. I honestly think this lens would suck the life out of me. 400mm f5.6 -=$450 used. 560mm f5.6=$ 7K. But, I'm a good sport, I'm willing to give it a shot for a couple weeks to see what if I like it.. Where can I rent one?
I just think that the number of people who need high end, long glass is small. That makes it so that runs of the lens will be small and it also means that the cost of the lens is higher.

I have thought before whether or not I would ever use a Bigma lens, but shooting longer than a 55-300 is just something I don't do very often at all. I'd be far more interested in a DA *300 and the TC that is on the road map.

09-16-2013, 03:02 PM   #32

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Personally, I solved the "long lens problem" with Pentax years ago, and the DA 560 did nothing to change the situation for me. I use an FA* 300/4.5 + F 1.7x AFA for 510mm f7.7 that will AF reliably in all but the darkest daylight conditions, and an FA* 300/2.8 + F 1.7x AFA for 510mm f4.8, and add a Sigma EX 1.4x APO to the mix to get 714mm f6.8 that will AF in just about any daylight situation. Both give me considerably shorter MFDs than I can get with any other 500+mm lens, which suits my shooting style, and the lens/TC combos are much more compact than any of the comparable 500mm options.

I think that considering the existing Pentax user base (read frugal, for the most part -- sometimes to the point of being a fault), this lens was something of a mistake. A switchable dual focus drive DA* 300 f2.8, possibly made lighter than the FA* variant, with an updated DC drive/ DG coated 1.7x AFA, and the often promised SDM 1.4x TC, I think they could have covered the long end to most long shooters' satisfaction and sold quite a few lenses. Price the DA* 300/2.8 at $4K, the AFA at $400, and the DA* 1.4x TC at $250, and Pentaxians could have 300mm f2.8, 420mm f4, 510mm f4.8, 600mm f5.6, and 714mm f6.8 for under $5K.

I think that a 300 f2.8 made with lighter weight materials, but keeping the optical quality of the FA* would have sold pretty well by itself. A high quality SDM/screwdrive compatible 1.4x TC would have potential buyers in everyone who currently owns a DA* 50-135, DA* 26-250, DA* 200, or DA* 300 (and any F or FA variants), and a DC focusing AFA would probably sell well, considering the current market price for the old screw mount AFA -- I have 3 AFAs currently and would still buy one. . .

I have found this modular approach much more practical than a stable of ultra tele lenses. When shooting all day, I'll shoot the 300/2.8 early and late when I need the extra speed, and use the TCs for more reach during the midday brighter hours. This is much more realistic than carrying multiple ultra/super tele lenses (and quite a few thousands of dollars less expensive). With this kit on a tripod/gimbal, I can also carry a second body with the FA* 300/4.5 + TC or AFA for quick handheld shooting, and a Q with a DA 55-300 or either of the the other FA*s for super tele work if needed.

The DA 560 leaves a gap between 300-500mm, and can't really be stretched with a TC since even a 1.4x would make it a 784mm f8, so AF would probably be marginal in all but the brightest light (and they'd still need to release a reliable SDM TC in any case).

Pentax could have tempted me with a DA* 300/2.8, even though I currently own an FA* 300/2.8, a Sigma EX 300/2.8 APO, and a Tamron SP 300/2.8 Adaptall 2. I would have bought both of the TCs without even blinking an eye. I never even considered the DA 560 seriously.

09-16-2013, 03:13 PM   #33

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QuoteOriginally posted by nater Quote
If you don't mind buying used, Tokina has a nice 400mm f/5.6 AF lens. I like mine quite a bit, and it should be about 1/10 the cost of a Pentax 560mm.
Originally that was my plan. I did keep my eye open for a used Pentax mount super telephoto for about 2-3 years. I preferred to buy one locally...or at least within reasonable driving range as I like to see what it's like for myself, before I buy. But being on the sparsely populated (Pentax owners anyways ) Canadian the middle of nowhere...there were few if any opportunities around here.

But I did a fair amount of research on the Sigma 150-500, felt this was a good lens choice and bought a new one some months ago.

It's big and relatively heavy....but it suits my super telephoto needs quite while. I like the versatile zoom range and find that this lens is very sharp....even at the upper end....450-500mm end.

Another point. It's my first Sigma. All the rest of my lenses are Pentax. At this point I pretty well have all the lenses I need, but if I was starting over in amassing an arsenal of Pentax mount lenses....I would not hesitate to consider Sigma.
09-17-2013, 07:37 AM   #34
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QuoteOriginally posted by jatrax Quote
Or maybe Pentax has never sold one.
They have. At least two of them are sold in Norway

09-17-2013, 08:17 AM   #35
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QuoteOriginally posted by StigVidar Quote
They have. At least two of them are sold in Norway
Wow ! Where can we find some pictures ? I'm wondering what it's worth in real life
09-17-2013, 10:33 AM   #36
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QuoteOriginally posted by aurele Quote
Wow ! Where can we find some pictures ? I'm wondering what it's worth in real life
Sorry, but I don't know their name or have seen any pictures posted. I heard from two different shops that they each have sold one of them.
09-17-2013, 10:56 AM   #37
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There are sample images here...
10-02-2013, 11:56 AM   #38

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Albert Siegel: Pentax DA 560mm f5.6

10-02-2013, 03:01 PM - 1 Like   #39
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QuoteOriginally posted by vonBaloney Quote
Very nice review.... it would seem to answer the question about hand holding in an un-expected way. OK do women like the big one or not? I'm confused.

10-08-2013, 11:03 PM   #40
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A review in Chinese language, you may use google translate if want to see
?????-Pentax-DA 560mm F5.6 ED AW ??-????
11-16-2013, 01:12 AM   #41
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I checked PentaxPhotoGallery and stumbled on two pis taken with the 560mm and some google later I found this: (note that there are more pics)

It looks like I need a rich wife and become a stay-at-home dad to get one.
11-16-2013, 11:04 AM   #42
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QuoteOriginally posted by VisualDarkness Quote
It looks like I need a rich wife and become a stay-at-home dad to get one.
+1 on the rich wife. But I know how much work my wife does at home (and works besides) so I'll pass on the stay-at-home dad. I'd rather go to work, it's less work.
11-16-2013, 02:17 PM   #43
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lucaben, from italy, get great photos
Pentax DA 560mm f/5.6 ED : Caratteristiche e Opinioni [JuzaPhoto]
11-27-2013, 11:32 PM   #44
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I used the 560

Link: [UT] Hattingen, 23.11., Präsentationsveranstaltung K-3 • Pentaxians

I had a chance to shoot with the 560 at a forum-event hosted by two German Pentax-Forums, i.e. Digitalfotonetz and Here are some impressions despite the pretty awful light conditions on the day:

- Build quality is on a very high level, the lens is solidly built, and small touches like the little wheels which make it possible to access the revolving mechanism for the polarizer from the outside of the filter-drawer give a very good impression
- Image quality seemed to be on a par with my 250-600 though the tendency for purple fringing was detectable as you might see in the linked images
- Handholding is definitely an option, the lens is surprisingly light and my shots of the dog and the Cormorants are all handheld, the anti-shake works a treat and the lens balances well when handheld

Over all I would miss the versatility of the zoom and I did not try the lens with TCs so no comment there. The AF is fast and nearly silent, my general impression of the lens was very favorable.

12-04-2013, 05:35 AM   #45
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The DA560 is a joke, at least to me for its price and image quality.
I myself see no reason to buy this lens for its prce whilst image quality is inferior to Sigma 500/4.5 , FA*600/4 and FA*250-600/5.6
I owned the Sigma 545 before the launch of DA560. When DA560 comes out, I once thought whether I should got it because of its WR and DC, however the image quality stopped me for paying such a price.
Eventually I decided to got the FA*600/4 after the launch of DA560,
Here is my pics with FA*600/4

Finally, after deciding to have a Safari trip within these few years, I sold my FA*600/4 to a friend and got the FA*250-600/5.6

My comment of the image quality re DA560 which is not good enough is based on the Pentax Forum Review, some web photos of Japanese user and Taiwan user and also a Chinese review by a Chinese user.
Sorry to say, I think if I am a bird shooter and have money to spend, I would rather buy the Sigma 500/4.5

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