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10-04-2009, 01:51 PM   #16
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QuoteOriginally posted by Nubi Quote
Actually, there was no reason to hold the source from the beginning. Sorry guys.

There is a Japanese photography magazine called "Digital Photo." In Feb 2008 issue, a there is a section where a each manufacture was to pick out a lens that signified the philosophy of product development. Pentax picked DA 40 ltd. In it, there is a guy named Yasuuki Maekawa. He is a product development manager. He discussed extensively how DA 40 was designed from ground up. According to him the thinnest ever was DA 40 which is 1.5cm without a hood(I actually never measured). The reason I bring this up now is simple. I was just flipping through them and happened to stumbled onto it. In it, he did not talk about whether or not optically these 2 lenses were identical. But he does say that the project started with a clean slate. He also talked about how they paid little attention to numerical values yielded by not so vigorous experiments(because they didn't put too much emphasis on "numbers" as with any ltd lenses including FA). But they debated endlessly in regards to the subtle differences in IQ that the lens demonstrated at each stage of development.


These Japanese magazines often interview engineers who actually worked on certain projects or that, and often times they are very candid, almost to a fault. I believe I have many more that you guys might be interested in, especially about K-7. As for K-7, there were a larger number of people involved than a typical project of this size, due to relatively shorter product cycle compared to years past. Therefore more engineers made numerous comments about the K-7 developement in various magazines. Ooops, going off the topic now. Sorry.
hmmm..... despite some similarities with the number of optical elements, size, and etc, it really seems that there is a significant difference as to the IQ results.

I had my chance to actually see and try an M40. it really looked tiny and somehow attractive. as I had compared it with the DA LTD counterpart, it (M40/2.8) looked liked it has less contrast and quite soft at the corners. probably that's the reason for the cheap price.


Last edited by Pentaxor; 10-04-2009 at 09:46 PM.
10-04-2009, 02:22 PM   #17
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The price on the M's has double recently. While there maybe some IQ differences and some design differences, there are still way too many similarities for the DA to have been done completely from scratch.
10-04-2009, 02:44 PM   #18
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QuoteOriginally posted by Blue Quote
The price on the M's has double recently. While there maybe some IQ differences and some design differences, there are still way too many similarities for the DA to have been done completely from scratch.
that doesn't look sound nor is it worth the extra cost. at f4, for a manual focus lens, seems overpriced. though I would gladly buy a 300-400 dollar Pentax A 20/2.8 over it anyday, much better an FA 20/2.8 which would probably cost at around 500-600 bucks nowadays. I just don't feel that a 200 dollar M20/4 is worth it. a DA21/2.8 would be more of a better investment than getting an M20/4.

as far as a 200 dollar M40/2.8, it is not worth the price either due to obvious reasons. it's a manual-focus lens, it's an M series which means the metering is only limited to center-weight and it's not enhanced for digital performance. for a price difference of a 100 bucks, you are better off with a DA LTD. the only way that I would merit the cost of it if it has no successor which is better than it. that would be more logical.

Last edited by Pentaxor; 10-04-2009 at 03:19 PM.
10-04-2009, 02:50 PM   #19
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People pay a lot of money for nostalgia these days.


Depending on what they meant by clean slate, obviously these people knew the optical details of the M40 when designing DA 40, I am sure. But there were enough agenda that needed to be addressed that the designers perhaps wanted as clean a slate as possible. Being that small, optics combinations probably were somewhat limited to begin with. Dunno. You guys know so much more about that stuff anyway. Some of the engineers laugh at how much some of you guys know. In many cases you guys probably know more about Pentax than they do!!


Last edited by Nubi; 10-04-2009 at 02:52 PM. Reason: Because I am thin as a DA 40 ltd
10-04-2009, 03:01 PM   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by Pentaxor Quote
that doesn't look sound nor is it worth the extra cost. at f4, for a manual focus lens, seems overpriced. though I would gladly buy a 300-400 dollar Pentax A 20/2.8 over it anyday, much better an FA 20/2.8 which would probably cost at around 500-600 bucks nowadays. I just don't feel that a 200 dollar M20/4 is worth it.
Who said anything about an M 20mm? I was just commenting on the M 40mm lenses are increasing in price unless you get lucky on ebay or someone on PF sells one for a little more than what they have in it. Some of those faster lenses like the FA* 24mm f2 and FA 20mm f2.8 are huge compared to the ltd lenses.
10-04-2009, 03:04 PM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by Nubi Quote
People pay a lot of money for nostalgia these days.


Depending on what they meant by clean slate, obviously these people knew the optical details of the M40 when designing DA 40, I am sure. But there were enough agenda that needed to be addressed that the designers perhaps wanted as clean a slate as possible. Being that small, optics combinations probably were somewhat limited to begin with. Dunno. You guys know so much more about that stuff anyway. Some of the engineers laugh at how much some of you guys know. In many cases you guys probably know more about Pentax than they do!!

That is probably true to a point. I'm going to look up a couple of other 40mm pancake formulae including the Voightlander.
10-04-2009, 03:15 PM   #22
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QuoteOriginally posted by Blue Quote
Who said anything about an M 20mm? I was just commenting on the M 40mm lenses are increasing in price unless you get lucky on ebay or someone on PF sells one for a little more than what they have in it. Some of those faster lenses like the FA* 24mm f2 and FA 20mm f2.8 are huge compared to the ltd lenses.
sorry about that. I had it mixed up for awhile and was talking about another lens. I just edited it right now. my point, as you stated that the M lens prices in general have doubled up recently, not just the M40/2.8 as I had understood. but it is quite true that they are getting a bit of a boost recently.

speaking of the 20/2.8 and FA*24/2, they are huge but I prefer them over the DA21 anyday at an acceptable price. just dunno if you have the same preference as I have or does the DA21 enough for you?

Last edited by Pentaxor; 10-04-2009 at 03:22 PM.
10-04-2009, 03:18 PM   #23
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QuoteOriginally posted by Pentaxor Quote
both the M40 and DA40 are optically the same and are pancakes. though the manual focus could be bought at much cheaper price around 70 bucks, it is a concern also when you use it for digital since the metering would only be centerweight. in other words, you cannot utilize the other two metering options. so it's more like handicapped in a way. this is one advantage the DA LTD has over the M40. other advantage is more optimized for digital slr use, built and etc...
maybe in states!!!
in UK, good copy can go up to 150!!!!

10-04-2009, 03:39 PM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by axl Quote
maybe in states!!!
in UK, good copy can go up to 150!!!!
almost everything in the U.K. is the price doubled,tripled and quadrupled. be it jewelries and electronics. I just feel bad for you guys.

I just had my brother bought and brought my mum a laptop there last week, which only cost him around a 1/3 of the price tag than that of what is being offered by Viking Direct and other computer stores in the U.K.
10-04-2009, 05:28 PM   #25
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Having owned both the M 40mm and DA 40mm, there are obvious differences between the lenses, most particularly in the micro contrast and the out of focus highlight bokeh.
The newer DA is much better optically than the older M version (with that ridiculously thin focusing ring).

Just take a look at the comparison test photos from the two lenses posted from dcwatch.impress.co.jp. Let your eyes be the judge.

DA 40mm vs M 40mm test images
10-04-2009, 05:38 PM   #26
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QuoteOriginally posted by Nubi Quote
Actually, there was no reason to hold the source from the beginning. Sorry guys.

There is a Japanese photography magazine called "Digital Photo." In Feb 2008 issue, a there is a section where a each manufacture was to pick out a lens that signified the philosophy of product development. Pentax picked DA 40 ltd. In it, there is a guy named Yasuuki Maekawa. He is a product development manager. He discussed extensively how DA 40 was designed from ground up. According to him the thinnest ever was DA 40 which is 1.5cm without a hood(I actually never measured). The reason I bring this up now is simple. I was just flipping through them and happened to stumbled onto it. In it, he did not talk about whether or not optically these 2 lenses were identical. But he does say that the project started with a clean slate. He also talked about how they paid little attention to numerical values yielded by not so vigorous experiments(because they didn't put too much emphasis on "numbers" as with any ltd lenses including FA). But they debated endlessly in regards to the subtle differences in IQ that the lens demonstrated at each stage of development.

These Japanese magazines often interview engineers who actually worked on certain projects or that, and often times they are very candid, almost to a fault. I believe I have many more that you guys might be interested in, especially about K-7. As for K-7, there were a larger number of people involved than a typical project of this size, due to relatively shorter product cycle compared to years past. Therefore more engineers made numerous comments about the K-7 developement in various magazines. Ooops, going off the topic now. Sorry.
Fascinating stuff. Thanks for sharing the gist of this article with us!

It's funny that on some Limited lenses the FL's are...well, odd: 21, 31, 43, 77 but then on this lens they decided to go 'un-funny' at 40mm. But it does make a nice homage to it's ancestor in the M-series.

I'm still waiting for the Limited Pinhole Pancake, the smallest lens ever for K-mount...Pentax must be trying to figure out how to apply SMC to pinhole optics...
10-04-2009, 05:49 PM   #27
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QuoteOriginally posted by Pentaxor Quote
sorry about that. I had it mixed up for awhile and was talking about another lens. I just edited it right now. my point, as you stated that the M lens prices in general have doubled up recently, not just the M40/2.8 as I had understood. but it is quite true that they are getting a bit of a boost recently.

speaking of the 20/2.8 and FA*24/2, they are huge but I prefer them over the DA21 anyday at an acceptable price. just dunno if you have the same preference as I have or does the DA21 enough for you?
I like the DA 21mm. The reason I got it was mainly when I travel by air. However, I have found it to be a good lens. I like fast lens though.
10-04-2009, 08:43 PM   #28
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All of you guys are just full of expertise, and I am glad that at least it stirred up some thoughts. I was thinking even if the optics combos are the same, could it be that the quality of each glass that were utilized are different? Coatings? In this day and age, they must have superior lens production capability. Even if they are completely identical, the differences in raw materials, for example, could perhaps count for the obvious difference in IQ.

Last edited by Nubi; 10-04-2009 at 09:44 PM.
10-04-2009, 08:51 PM   #29
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I think the major differences are in the glass shape of the rear element as well as the front element. Another difference may be in glass quality. The coatings are probably very similar since they both have SMC.
10-04-2009, 09:52 PM   #30
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QuoteOriginally posted by Nubi Quote
All of you guys are just full of expertise, and I am glad that at least it stirred up some thoughts. I was thinking even if the optics combos are the same, could it be that the quality of each glass that were utilized are different? Coatings? In this day and age, they must have superior lens production capability. Even if they are completely identical, the differences in raw materials, for example, could perhaps count for the obvious difference in IQ.
well not really. just fortunate to try out some lens before they got bought out by somebody else.

the answer is of course is a little bit of Yes and No. even in today's modern age doesn't really guarantee a new Digital lens to be superior of that of it's predecessors. there are always exceptions and some sort of subjective appeal or preference to which lens. however, one could identify which one is better than the other. there are parameters that are used to measure for it.
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