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07-20-2021, 05:40 PM   #46
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QuoteOriginally posted by AfterPentax Mark II Quote
To keep the prices low? The 21mm has only an AL element and none ED type. AL is not a special kind of glass I think, it is more common in lenses than ED. The DA 35mm has no special glass at all.
I'm not sure about DA-35 macro

But I do know that DA-40 is a tessar design, which is simple (less glasses) but sharp.

The limitation of tessar is that, the focal length (view angle) is limited to mid to tele (40 to 60 in 35mm format).

So special lens is not required for 40mm, and it can be cheap to sell

07-28-2021, 05:29 PM - 4 Likes   #47
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I have most of the DA Limited lenses. I have one DA★ lens. They hail from very different design philosophies.

While I might not have put it so bluntly as Wheatfield has, I agree with him. The Limited lenses are mechanically amazing, optically decent, and technologically average. The ★ lenses are mechanically decent, optically amazing, and technologically advanced.

With the Limited lenses, Pentax engineers seem to be asking: How can we solve a problem that others have ignored? Can we make a pancake lens that is shorter than its own rear lens cap? Can we make a landscape lens that is utterly impervious to lens flare? Can we make a fast portrait lens that still counts as a pancake lens? Can we make a moderate wide lens that produces perfectly pointy starbursts?

One reason few lensmakers have answered these questions is that not that many photographers ever thought to ask them. If you hate starbursts, if pancake lenses don't intrigue you, if hideaway lens hoods strike you as florid, then Limited lenses will confound you. Photographers with typical needs and criteria often deride the Limited lenses as odd, imperfect, or even retrograde. But those of us who love themwe love them.

With the ★ lenses, Pentax engineers seem to be asking: How can we address the common problems professional photographers face? Can we make a sharp, constant-aperture /2.8 zoom for weddings? Can we make an enormous, sharp, /1.4 prime for portraits? Can we make a weather-proof, constant-aperture /2.8 ultra-wide zoom for landscapes?

Well, every lensmaker caters to these needs and wants. That's where the money is, after all. The upcoming HD DA★ 1650mm /2.8 will be tack-sharp, fast-focusing, rain-proof, and full of aspherical hypersonic doo-dadsbut it's not going to be any better than a 2470mm /2.8 from Nikon, or Sony, or Canon. (The Pentax model will be optimized for APS-C, and that's important, but not particularly relevant to your original question.)

My DA★ 50135mm is awesome, high-performance, and boring. My Limited lenses are quirky, charming, and delightful. Were I to switch camera systems, I could find substitutes for my star lens. I could not find substitutes for my Limiteds.
07-28-2021, 07:12 PM   #48
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My take is the Limited lenses have an emphasis on craftsmanship, with a focus on a refined and nostalgic design with more modern optical formulas in some cases, AF, and in the case of the 20-40, weather resistance.

The star lenses are more about high functionality. Their build quality is still extremely robust (certainly more functional but also durable), and utilitarian.

Both classes of lenses have excellent design and performance attributes, but tuned differently.
07-29-2021, 03:42 AM   #49
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QuoteOriginally posted by Michael Piziak Quote
From an engineering point, which lens does Pentax (Ricoh) consider to be their better/best lens - the Limited edition lens or the Star (*) editions - ?
They're very different ranges but I believe Pentax aim the star series lenses to be the best of the best in performance. Having said that, the DA Limiteds are mostly sharp even wide open AND they don't have dodgy AF motors in them.

I love the DA Limiteds and among AF lenses they are the ones I get the most joy out of using. I've never had a star lens mainly because I've avoided them due to the aforementioned AF problems.

07-29-2021, 06:02 AM - 2 Likes   #50
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QuoteOriginally posted by Michael Piziak Quote
From an engineering point, which lens does Pentax (Ricoh) consider to be their better/best lens - the Limited edition lens or the Star (*) editions - ?
Ricoh does answer your Questions here:
www.ricoh-imaging.co.jp/english/support/pdf/pentax_acc.pdf#page=2
ricoh-imaging.co.jp/english/products/limited_lens/
ricoh-imaging.co.jp/english/products/star_lens/
PENTAX Star-series Lenses | PENTAX STAR LENS | RICOH IMAGING


Here you find the same question and answers:
Star & Limited lenses - PentaxForums.com
Star vs limited lenses - PentaxForums.com
n00b time - Limited vs star - PentaxForums.com

Last edited by angerdan; 07-29-2021 at 06:10 AM.
07-29-2021, 07:08 PM - 2 Likes   #51
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The Limiteds are compromised in their optical performance by being smaller than they could be.

The smallest Star lens would still be larger than the biggest Limited, I reckon, there's so much more corrective glass inside.

Conversely, you could say that Star lenses are compromised in their weight and portability by being better optically than they could've been.

Since there's room for both philosophies, I own examples of both kind of lens, of course.

Last edited by clackers; 07-29-2021 at 07:17 PM.
07-30-2021, 08:00 AM   #52
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The complication for Pentax is that they don't have a line of just normal primes. It's hard to see how they would differ optically from the limiteds.

07-30-2021, 08:19 AM   #53
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QuoteOriginally posted by PocketPixels Quote
I have most of the DA Limited lenses. I have one DA★ lens. They hail from very different design philosophies.

While I might not have put it so bluntly as Wheatfield has, I agree with him. The Limited lenses are mechanically amazing, optically decent, and technologically average. The ★ lenses are mechanically decent, optically amazing, and technologically advanced.

With the Limited lenses, Pentax engineers seem to be asking: How can we solve a problem that others have ignored? Can we make a pancake lens that is shorter than its own rear lens cap? Can we make a landscape lens that is utterly impervious to lens flare? Can we make a fast portrait lens that still counts as a pancake lens? Can we make a moderate wide lens that produces perfectly pointy starbursts?

One reason few lensmakers have answered these questions is that not that many photographers ever thought to ask them. If you hate starbursts, if pancake lenses don't intrigue you, if hideaway lens hoods strike you as florid, then Limited lenses will confound you. Photographers with typical needs and criteria often deride the Limited lenses as odd, imperfect, or even retrograde. But those of us who love them…we love them.

With the ★ lenses, Pentax engineers seem to be asking: How can we address the common problems professional photographers face? Can we make a sharp, constant-aperture ƒ/2.8 zoom for weddings? Can we make an enormous, sharp, ƒ/1.4 prime for portraits? Can we make a weather-proof, constant-aperture ƒ/2.8 ultra-wide zoom for landscapes?

Well, every lensmaker caters to these needs and wants. That's where the money is, after all. The upcoming HD DA★ 16–50mm ƒ/2.8 will be tack-sharp, fast-focusing, rain-proof, and full of aspherical hypersonic doo-dads…but it's not going to be any better than a 24–70mm ƒ/2.8 from Nikon, or Sony, or Canon. (The Pentax model will be optimized for APS-C, and that's important, but not particularly relevant to your original question.)

My DA★ 50–135mm is awesome, high-performance, and boring. My Limited lenses are quirky, charming, and delightful. Were I to switch camera systems, I could find substitutes for my star lens. I could not find substitutes for my Limiteds.
I guess if you find purple fringing, unsharp corners and compromised wide open performance (with the DA Limited lenses you even get zoom lens maximum apertures in a prime) quirky, charming, and delightful........
07-30-2021, 08:51 AM   #54
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
I guess if you find purple fringing, unsharp corners and compromised wide open performance (with the DA Limited lenses you even get zoom lens maximum apertures in a prime) quirky, charming, and delightful........
Indeed, the world is full of compromises. The trick is to find the 'sweet spot' that one is happy with within those compromises.

Edit. Mattias Burling 'ranked' the 89 cameras that he has tested over the past five years. Regardless of the ranking, he shows that interesting and exciting pictures are possible with almost any camera/lens combination.




- Craig

Last edited by c.a.m; 07-30-2021 at 10:14 AM.
07-30-2021, 11:14 AM   #55
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
I guess if you find purple fringing, unsharp corners and compromised wide open performance (with the DA Limited lenses you even get zoom lens maximum apertures in a prime) quirky, charming, and delightful........
Bingo, Wheatfield. You've got me pegged, for sure. I love purple fringing. Can't get enough of it. Unsharp corners and light falloff have landed me more clients than I can count. For my personal work, I also seek out chunky JPEG artifacts and captivating moir patterns. The Limited line delivers on all counts and then some. I'm so very glad you understood my message and encapsulated my broader points in good faith.
07-30-2021, 12:35 PM   #56
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QuoteOriginally posted by c.a.m Quote
Indeed, the world is full of compromises. The trick is to find the 'sweet spot' that one is happy with within those compromises.

Edit. Mattias Burling 'ranked' the 89 cameras that he has tested over the past five years. Regardless of the ranking, he shows that interesting and exciting pictures are possible with almost any camera/lens combination.


Ranking all the 89 cameras I have tested 2016-2021 - YouTube


- Craig
It's funny how semi technical discussions about lens quality always devolves into some sort of apologist defensiveness.
I can make an interesting picture with a Holga lens.
It doesn't mean I think it's a great optic.

---------- Post added Jul 30th, 2021 at 01:37 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by PocketPixels Quote
Bingo, Wheatfield. You've got me pegged, for sure. I love purple fringing. Can't get enough of it. Unsharp corners and light falloff have landed me more clients than I can count. For my personal work, I also seek out chunky JPEG artifacts and captivating moir patterns. The Limited line delivers on all counts and then some. I'm so very glad you understood my message and encapsulated my broader points in good faith.
Don't take it so personally. I like the Limited lenses well enough, but I'm not buying into the cult of pixie dust.

Last edited by Wheatfield; 07-30-2021 at 12:50 PM.
07-30-2021, 12:54 PM   #57
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QuoteOriginally posted by house Quote
The complication for Pentax is that they don't have a line of just normal primes. It's hard to see how they would differ optically from the limiteds.
They wouldn't sell. They have to compete with the 24 000 000 or so normal primes K-mount lenses already in Pentax users hands.....
Pentax market strategy is to cater for the K-mount lens owners; very different from what Fuji and others with a new non-established lens mount are doing......
07-30-2021, 01:14 PM   #58
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QuoteOriginally posted by Pl Jensen Quote
They wouldn't sell. They have to compete with the 24 000 000 or so normal primes K-mount lenses already in Pentax users hands.....
Pentax market strategy is to cater for the K-mount lens owners; very different from what Fuji and others with a new non-established lens mount are doing......
I guess Pentax has that to deal with. I can't really see new af glass and mostly manual focus vintage glass as the same category though. I use vintage glass but with few exceptions I don't want them to be the only lens in a focal range. But of course Pentax maintains the Limited line because it makes them more money than they expect a normal prime lineup would do. Shame for us users that's all. Saying that they did promise lower priced lenses in the future.
07-30-2021, 01:15 PM - 1 Like   #59
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35 and 50 DA sell quite good I think. And are great lenses for their price. I think it is more of an issue with limited market on primes, people tend to concentrate on zooms as they have the quality of most primes those days and are more versatile. With limited userbase of PK mount Ricoh is concentrating resources where more money is.
07-30-2021, 01:23 PM   #60
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QuoteOriginally posted by jersey Quote
35 and 50 DA sell quite good I think. And are great lenses for their price. I think it is more of an issue with limited market on primes, people tend to concentrate on zooms as they have the quality of most primes those days and are more versatile. With limited userbase of PK mount Ricoh is concentrating resources where more money is.
Sure the plastic fantastics are great value. I find the DA35 in particular fantastic. Only thing is that those are super budget lenses. Just normal FA style quality but contemporary glass and build would be great.

After the DFA21ltd I'm settled with lenses though (if it's to my liking that is) so they shouldn't make them for me I guess.
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