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01-27-2009, 03:11 PM   #31
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It's not just the SDM. It's also weathersealed, and is a completely new optical design with low dispersion elements. Not to mention it's designed specifically for digital sensors.

I had the FA 50mm 1.4, and while its a great buy and a good lens in general, it wasn't anything special. If this lens is I would say it could be worth the price.

01-27-2009, 03:43 PM   #32
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QuoteOriginally posted by mycarsoots Quote
Wow, 4x the cost of my FA 50mm f1.4 when new, and about 5x the current used price. I don't think that the SDM is worth it. I'll bet they sell tens of them!
They certainly won't sell as many. But that doesn't mean they can't make money at it.

Lenses, like everything else, go through a "diminishing returns" price curve. You get maybe 70 or 80% of the ideal for maybe 20% or 30% of the price. To get the next 10% costs a lot more. If you don't need the extra 10% then you'd be foolish to pay the price - but if you DO need it then mere availability is a lot more important than the price.
01-27-2009, 04:35 PM   #33
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Ok, I get it...so optically this has to be much better than the FA50..I guess more in line with the limiteds...makes sense, thanks.
01-27-2009, 04:37 PM   #34
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QuoteOriginally posted by Sean Nelson Quote
They certainly won't sell as many. But that doesn't mean they can't make money at it.

Lenses, like everything else, go through a "diminishing returns" price curve. You get maybe 70 or 80% of the ideal for maybe 20% or 30% of the price. To get the next 10% costs a lot more. If you don't need the extra 10% then you'd be foolish to pay the price - but if you DO need it then mere availability is a lot more important than the price.
This is true, however I think that the current price point is too high, even for the ideal. Maybe when the "new" wears off, the price will drop to a level that will be more palatable. Also, you have to compare it to other, similar lenses. The Sigma 50mm f/1.4 EX DG HSM, for instance, is $439 at B&H.

01-27-2009, 04:52 PM   #35
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Yeah, you have to pay for the Pentax stamp, the weather sealing, and Pentax lens coatings. The coatings are the primary reason I would choose it over the Sigma. I love the colors Pentax lenses produce, and their flare resistance is great.
01-27-2009, 05:00 PM   #36
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I love the Pentax lenses as well. I started shooting Pentax in 1975 with an old Spotmatic and a 50mm Tak, and it was special even then.

I do have a Sigma lens now, the 18-50 f2.8 "lots of initials" MACRO that has very nice color rendition and contrast, so I'm not afraid of trying the 3rd party lenses. If they don't pass muster, I'll just send them back!
01-27-2009, 05:04 PM   #37
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If I were in a different tax bracket, I might have pre-ordered. (And it would have been cheaper) Anyone figure the price will come down after the early-adopters pay for the privilege?

I'm just hoping this lens really kicks butt, so I can look forward to getting hold of one in the future. I guess lenses like this have that potential, (Nikon's new 50 is very impressive )

If it is that good, especially wide open, I wouldn't have a problem with that being my most expensive lens. The fast 85 is really my home in 35mm, and this'd probably do the same job. When I got my Pentax, I started with the FA50, with the intention of bypassing the kit lens, (got a kit lens deal anyway) ...so it's like, if that's your tool, then there you are. Some of us may not be needing the nicest long lens or widest one, ...if I had a lump sum to drop on lenses, it could make a fair bit of sense to get the nicest I could in that range and something semi-wide.

Think I'm priced out, for now, though.
01-27-2009, 08:05 PM   #38
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QuoteOriginally posted by mycarsoots Quote
I'll bet they sell tens of them!
LOL, that's funny mycarsoots:-).
But I'll bet you're wrong. Now, I'm not in the running for this lens any time soon, but once you start shooting Limiteds and * lenses you'll begin to understand their calling. They command premium prices because they are premium lenses. I like nice stuff. I drive a Ferrari, well, actually I don't but I would if I could pay for one. I'd have a Rolex watch, too, if I could afford it. I do have a FA 31Ltd though. I had to sacrifice to buy it but I bought it and I don't regret it for a moment, it's a joy to use and to handle. It makes going to work every day worth it. It's something I can hold and say "I earned this".
If this *55 performs as it should there will be buyers. I'm not a portrait shooter per se and if I need to shoot this focal length I have a K 55/1.8 I can use. Still, in 8 or 9 months if the price were to drop into the $600 range, well...........................:-).

01-27-2009, 08:51 PM   #39
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QuoteOriginally posted by wildman Quote
How can this be true?:

"Date first available at Amazon.com: September 22, 2008"
I think that was the first pre-order date. The ring flash has been up for pre-order since it was announced...that's how I put it on my wishlist. Too bad no one has ordered it for me
01-27-2009, 09:12 PM   #40
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QuoteOriginally posted by Eaglerapids Quote
LOL, that's funny mycarsoots:-).
But I'll bet you're wrong. Now, I'm not in the running for this lens any time soon, but once you start shooting Limiteds and * lenses you'll begin to understand their calling. They command premium prices because they are premium lenses. I like nice stuff. I drive a Ferrari, well, actually I don't but I would if I could pay for one. I'd have a Rolex watch, too, if I could afford it. I do have a FA 31Ltd though. I had to sacrifice to buy it but I bought it and I don't regret it for a moment, it's a joy to use and to handle. It makes going to work every day worth it. It's something I can hold and say "I earned this".
If this *55 performs as it should there will be buyers. I'm not a portrait shooter per se and if I need to shoot this focal length I have a K 55/1.8 I can use. Still, in 8 or 9 months if the price were to drop into the $600 range, well...........................:-).
I own and have owned many "premium" lenses from Pentax, Leica, etc. Yes, they are better, especially from a build quality standpoint. Some have been absolute jewels! They are a pleasure to use and the results can be excellent. What is really a pleasure is getting an excellent result from a much less expensive, but still excellent, lens. I look for the best balance of quality and price, with the emphasis on image quality. Everyone has their own priorities, I was just expressing mine. I'm completely with you on the prospect of a future price drop. At $500, the 55 would be very attractive if the performance equals the hype! At $800, not so much.
01-28-2009, 04:46 AM   #41
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It is good to see Pentax is still producing high quality prime lenses such as this one appears to be. We have enough zoom lenses out there. $800 seems a bit steep for a 55mm but quality has never been cheap no matter what you buy. This is probably just another case of diminishing returns on higher investments. Klaus Schrioff of Photozone made this observation when reviewing the FA* 31mm f 1.8. If it is built to the same high standards as the FA 31 and performs as well $800 may seem like a bargain in a few years.

Tom G
01-28-2009, 04:59 AM   #42
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guys and girls! Please. This is a pre-copy on ebay, and everybody starts to speak about that the price is high.

I think that it will be cheaper in the stores, and it will probebly drop the price a bit too after any months, so were are the big worry?
01-28-2009, 07:17 AM   #43
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and the question that no one has asked yet (maybe irrelevant in this age of DSLRs and no news of any deviation from the APS - C sensor)

Is the 55* gonna be FF compatible?
01-28-2009, 08:53 AM   #44
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QuoteOriginally posted by Eaglerapids Quote
I've seen retail prices of the 31Ltd that high at some stores, time for the guys who have been clamoring for this bad boy to step up and buy it!
Pentax DA*55 F 1.4 SDM is selling in Vietnam with reasonable price.Here
01-28-2009, 11:01 AM   #45
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The FA 50 flares badly and is soft wide open, even a bit at 2.8. It is a $200 lens after all.

The FA limiteds I have don't flare and are very sharp wide open. They're $700 lenses.

That's the difference. Plus weather sealing and SDM. If it's worth the money to you, done deal.
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