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09-09-2009, 08:49 AM   #16
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QuoteOriginally posted by EsBee Quote
Yep, I was one of them. I had a manual 35mm f3.5 with no specific lettering, and I assumed it was a K but it could have been an M. Or something in between.
There is nothing "in between". It either said "Pentax-M" or it just said "Pentax". If the former; it's an M. If the latter, it's a "K" (and I put that in quotes because as noted, that' not really an official name).

Heck, even Bojidar Dimitrov called it a K, even though it said nothing to that effect.
Precisely. It's the lenses that don't say "M" or "A" that are referred to as "K". assuming they are in fact K-mount.

There are also some K-mount lenses branded as Takumar rather than Pentax. That's it's own series, a fairly small and mostly not-loved series.

09-09-2009, 09:11 AM   #17
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QuoteOriginally posted by alexeyga Quote
For the others, do your homework and find out why "A"-s go for almost double the price of "K"-s....
I have. It's because they support auto-exposure modes (camera control over aperture) and full flash automation as well. Also because they are generally smaller. It is *not* because they are perceived to be optically better, because in fact, it's normally the other way around That is, the K's are usually perceived as optically better. The conventional wisdom is that Pentax sacrificed a bit of quality in order to achieve the smaller size of the M series, and the A series is mostly optically identical to the M (with some exceptions, presumably to improve on the M design, but rarely considered to bring optical quality back up to the K level). In the specific case of the 50/1.2, they are generally believed to be optically identical, with only relevant difference being the number of aperture blades. But in general, A's are considered optically inferior (and also less well-built), yet they still command a higher price because of the other factors I mentioned.

If you doubt any of this, visit this site:

Stan's Pentax Photography

and check out the discussions of the various focal lengths. You'll find the K lenses "winning" almost every time. 50mm is, however, one of the rare focal lengths where the A's are generally considered an improvement, so if you are referring to 50mm only with your comment above, you may be right. Still, most the price difference would be due to the other factors, since the it's basically the same price difference we see in other focal lengths where the "A" *is* generally considered optically inferior.

Actual resolution tests are few and far between, though, so I'm not claiming the K's really *are* better overall.

Last edited by Marc Sabatella; 09-09-2009 at 09:21 AM.
09-09-2009, 09:18 AM   #18
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QuoteOriginally posted by TWoK Quote
Thanks, all. Here in Japan, this is refered to as the SMCM 50/1.2 vice the SMCA 50/1.2. They do not refer to any lenes that I have seen as the SMCK 50/1.2, but I am rather new to pentax.
Are you sure it isn't just SMC, as opposed to SMCM, that you are seeing reference to? In any event, SMCM is definitely incorrect, but as noted, it would be a common mistake to see someone make, since as you note the "K" is *not* part of the official name of any lens, and the lenses that are colloquially referred to as K's do often get lumped in with the M's. The "K" is just a convenient way some people use to refer to the SMC lenses that are neither M nor A, but the official name is just "SMC PENTAX". If it were an "M", it would be labeled "SMC PENTAX-M".
09-09-2009, 07:42 PM   #19
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people shouldn't be concerned about sharpness since both could produce sharp images. their shouldn't be any concern since it's only a slight sharpness and doesn't say that the other is dull. the other thing that is mentioned is the additional aperture blade. now this addition could affect the IQ as well. from what I saw atleast from some normal prime lenses which are sharp, they have less aperture blades. 1.4's and 1.7's in particular. now what benefit does an additional aperture blade gives the A version? usually it affects rendering , resolution , and obviously bokeh difference.

it's a luxury to have an A lens for it's auto feature. and found it useful most of the time. and that capability alone is worth the added cost for practical use.


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