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01-12-2010, 01:24 PM   #106
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ash Quote
I've just received word from dorianb, as referred by Ken (thanks mate), which is at least something enlightening. Unfortunately that enlightenment is with a rather dim lamp - SDM issues are reportedly not common enough according to Pentax USA to consider it a systematic flaw in the technology. Return rates are apparently less than repair rates, and SDM-specific repairs are a relatively small (how small?) proportion of total repairs in the US.

i.e. SDM = good. If it fails, just get it repaired - but it is certainly not considered doomed for failure in any way.

Somehow, I'm not quite convinced this reassurance gels well with what reality we're seeing in just this forum alone...
Pretty much exactly what someone predicted in post #67: https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/877296-post63.html

Thanks for the attempt though.

01-12-2010, 01:31 PM   #107
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ash Quote
I've just received word from dorianb, as referred by Ken (thanks mate), which is at least something enlightening. Unfortunately that enlightenment is with a rather dim lamp - SDM issues are reportedly not common enough according to Pentax USA to consider it a systematic flaw in the technology. Return rates are apparently less than repair rates, and SDM-specific repairs are a relatively small (how small?) proportion of total repairs in the US.

i.e. SDM = good. If it fails, just get it repaired - but it is certainly not considered doomed for failure in any way.

Somehow, I'm not quite convinced this reassurance gels well with what reality we're seeing in just this forum alone...
When there has been any response from Pentax, which has usually been something like this, a little snippet from a Pentax internet participant, it has usually been consistent with this response. There is no widespread SDM issue.

Of course, we know by now that there is. But if you take Pentax at their word that there is no widespread SDM issue, then Pentax should have no problem standing behind the "few" lenses that might have SDM issues. I mean, what's the big deal for a company the size of Hoya/Pentax to replace/repair just a "few" bad apples at no charge to their loyal customers. So what is their reluctance to extend this offer? These are their cream of the crop lenses--just stand behind them, right? Apparently, not quite.
01-12-2010, 01:32 PM   #108
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At least it shows us where Pentax stands on the issue...
01-12-2010, 01:42 PM   #109
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QuoteOriginally posted by Peter Zack Quote
Agreed, just for now, I wouldn't suggest the DA* zooms.
Not just DA* zooms, many times the 17-70 is left out. As mentioned in the SDM Lens Failure thread, I just received my 17-70 back from the shop. It was only about four months old and suddently stopped locking focus. When it came back the notes said the SDM motor was replaced entirely.

I know this thread is originally about the 16-50, but as it evolves let's try to include all lenses experiencing the same problem.

Now my 17-70 is working great. I hope it continues with no more problems.

01-12-2010, 01:52 PM   #110
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QuoteOriginally posted by Peter Zack Quote
Well to be fair, Class A, I've used the same language and been just as inflammatory in this thread. It's in the title and my first post. So maybe i should have been calmer when I first posted this thread myself.
Peter, it is understandable that you had to vent given your past experience with the lens and the (non-) response by Pentax officials. I think it was clear to everyone that you did not intend your language to be interpreted literally.

Forum member sebberry, on the other hand, doesn't have an issue with a lens copy, so the lack of anger indicated to me that his description of the lens model was to be taken verbatim.

I just felt a difference, and yes, I think your argument would have been stronger if it had been a little more composed. It is too easy for officials to mistake someone who is venting their anger for someone who has problems with their judgement. In correspondence to officials, whether public or not, I'd therefore try to be as rational as possible.

So I think there is a time for venting (BTW, it has been scientifically proven that cursing helps to manage pain, so go for it! ) and a time for communicating with officials. I understand that this thread is also intended to somewhat play the latter role, which might be wrong.

QuoteOriginally posted by Ash Quote
Somehow, I'm not quite convinced this reassurance gels well with what reality we're seeing in just this forum alone...
What is this "reality we're seeing in just this forum alone"? I don't think anyone is in the position to deduce from the number of complaints here that there is a problem Pentax needs to react to on a scale as suggested by some.

I'm all for people telling Pentax about their experiences and can understand that people vote with their feet by not buying DA* zooms and telling other people they should avoid DA* zooms. However, no one is in a position to dispute the response by Pentax that there is no problem when looking at the big picture. If anyone can do it with statistical means, I'll change my mind but before that there is a large possibility that we are seeing individual problems which -- as unfortunate they are -- are largely outnumbered by cases of trouble free operation.

BTW, I don't think that DorianB is in any position to help us. We shouldn't bring her in the line of fire. If Ned Bunnell finds the time to answer individual questions on his blog (e.g. posed by our own Yvon Bourque or GordonBGood from dpreview) then he should find the time to answer Peter Zack's inquiry (assuming it wasn't just a string of expletives ).
01-12-2010, 02:05 PM   #111
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QuoteOriginally posted by builttospill Quote
I know this thread is originally about the 16-50, but as it evolves let's try to include all lenses experiencing the same problem.
I suspect this thread will achieve epic proportions, only to be rivaled by the Mother of All Threads: https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-news-rumors/57107-pic-k30d.html

01-12-2010, 02:19 PM   #112
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Class A, proportionally-speaking, if there are some obvious problems users are facing here, it may be safe to say the world of DA* users outside PF would be experiencing similar problems also.
I'm always strongly aware of the misrepresentation of true numbers of actual SDM issues by polls on this forum, but again absolute numbers matter for any company producing professional-grade equipment.

Dorian B may not be able to help, but she can do more than what we're doing now on this forum. She is not being blamed for Pentax's issues - she is a go-between and I appreciate the fact that at least she is responding to concerns, which is more than I can say about any other rep I've attempted to get a response from...
01-12-2010, 03:32 PM   #113
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ash Quote
She is not being blamed for Pentax's issues - she is a go-between and I appreciate the fact that at least she is responding to concerns, which is more than I can say about any other rep I've attempted to get a response from...
It is very sad that DorianB is, to the best of my knowledge, the only reliably helpful Pentax person present on this forum. I think it may not be good for her to be a "go-between" as she may receive some heat from the powers that be for passing on messages they must have heard themselves numerous times before. If she has the courage and will to do so, fine, but we shouldn't expect her to go in there and take all the bullets that may come flying back.

All is good, BTW, as JCPentax is looking into the SDM issue, and this thread should encourage him to double his efforts, that is unless he judges it to be another case of "severe lack of civility".

01-12-2010, 03:40 PM   #114
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Right. I do respect Dorian's position and don't wish to abuse that in any way.
She's been candid enough to respond accordingly to my own requests so far and I appreciate that.
I still do believe Peter's concern is shared by enough others for it to be addressed corporately, and as such, reliance of returns and repair data may in itself is not the be-all-and-end-all of quality assurance.

We ought to remain calm, keeping our emotions at bay when addressing such a concern that is seemingly being pushed aside. Continue to be objective and apply pressure where it is warranted for positive change to occur...
01-12-2010, 03:46 PM   #115
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Peter, you may want to post your concerns at dpreview because when JCPentax tries "to follow more than just DP Review, it gets difficult". But don't forget to attach a picture to your post since he tends to gravitate "to posts with pictures".
01-12-2010, 03:52 PM   #116
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hi Ash, I would likely think that we would be unable to extrapolate the issues here in PF to the wider pentax userbase.

my take on this...
Those with issues with their lenses, I imagine would search the internet for answers.... especially after laying down the $ of a DA*... a google search for pentax will take them here a high% of the time.... in addition to that, I think the majority of (english language) pentax users who puchase DA* lenses are likely members/viewers of this forum prior to purchase (need to be relatively serious to spend such $).

Again, I understand issues and frustrations people have... but I can also see from the point of view of Pentax... with actual Sales/Repair/SDM issue data in hand that potentially the issue i not as significant as we make out in these dramatic threads.
01-12-2010, 03:56 PM   #117
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QuoteOriginally posted by Class A Quote
Peter, you may want to post your concerns at dpreview because when JCPentax tries "to follow more than just DP Review, it gets difficult". But don't forget to attach a picture to your post since he tends to gravitate "to posts with pictures".


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01-12-2010, 08:51 PM   #118
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ash Quote
At least it shows us where Pentax stands on the issue...
QuoteOriginally posted by paulelescoces Quote

Again, I understand issues and frustrations people have... but I can also see from the point of view of Pentax... with actual Sales/Repair/SDM issue data in hand that potentially the issue i not as significant as we make out in these dramatic threads.
Please alow me to explain this again. No U.S .employee of a Japanese manufacturing company will comment on an issue like this until corporate in Japan has approved that comment. They will lie and deny or ignore from dawn till dusk until Japan clears a statement.
01-12-2010, 09:14 PM   #119
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The problem here is not just SDM failures.

Even if SDM failures are rare, Pentax repair centers seem to have a reputation on the forum for taking forever to fix the problem and usually introduce some other problem into the lens.

Some very simple procedural changes would make a huge difference to the quality of work carried out by Pentax repair centers. Do they even bother to test the lens after they screwed it back together?
01-12-2010, 10:20 PM   #120
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QuoteOriginally posted by sebberry Quote
Even if SDM failures are rare, Pentax repair centers seem to have a reputation on the forum for taking forever to fix the problem and usually introduce some other problem into the lens.
Ooh, that's a scathing claim...
If repair centres routinely falsified their repair reports to avoid SDM being implicated in DA* breakdowns, then what does that say about the company as a whole?

I'd reserve such judgement until it's blatantly obvious.
Anyone sending in their clearly failed SDM to Pentax getting reports back from them saying SDM was fine?
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