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02-01-2010, 07:35 AM   #1
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Pentax prices in Japan vs. USA, etc.

I can't believe the prices on Pentax lenses I saw on amazon.com, adorama, etc for USA. I understand there was a price hike in 2009?

Are Pentax lenses selling like hot cakes over there? Would you still buy them at those prices?

Whats causing this?

02-01-2010, 07:42 AM   #2
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Pentax lenses in Japan are cheap? Could you please post some prices for popular lenses like DA and FA limited lenses?
02-01-2010, 07:42 AM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by tokyoso Quote
I can't believe the prices on Pentax lenses I saw on amazon.com, adorama, etc for USA. I understand there was a price hike in 2009?

Are Pentax lenses selling like hot cakes over there? Would you still buy them at those prices?

Whats causing this?
The Yen appreciated in value vs. other currencies...but the exchange rates have been fluctuating too quickly for the lens makers to keep up and come up with rational prices. At different points during '09, the Canadian dollar had been very strong vs. the US dollar. Therefore, my non-Pentax lens purchases had been from the states. However, I still paid premium for the SDM lenses to get the 2 year Canadian warranty--which I had to use!

Last edited by asdf; 02-01-2010 at 08:11 AM.
02-01-2010, 03:51 PM   #4
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These are some prices of brand new lenses in Japan as of Feb 2, 2010 (converted to US dollars 1:90)

FA35mmF2AL $400
FA50mmF1.4 $330
DA70mmF2.4Limited $450
DFA100mmf2.8 Macro WR $660


Last edited by tokyoso; 02-01-2010 at 03:57 PM.
02-01-2010, 07:18 PM   #5
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they are not that cheap anymore. although you got the luxury of getting a made in Japan lens instead.
02-01-2010, 08:48 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by tokyoso Quote
These are some prices of brand new lenses in Japan as of Feb 2, 2010 (converted to US dollars 1:90)

FA35mmF2AL $400
FA50mmF1.4 $330
DA70mmF2.4Limited $450
DFA100mmf2.8 Macro WR $660
I havent check the US market lately, but last I checked (few months ago) the US prices are VERY similar to the prices in Japan...

In any case, responding to your second question, i think the idea of "cheaper Pentax glass in the past" weighs more than the actual prices charged currently. If you want to put it in perspective, check the price of similar lenses from canon, nikon or sony.

90% of my glasses were bought back two years ago, actually, ALL my glasses increased in value after I bought them, but the 18-55WR which was the only glass that paid full 2010 MSRP because i needed a WR in a hurry... If I was starting right now on Pentax, i'd still buy some key glasses at current prices, but I would not be able to buy the same line up i currently have...
02-01-2010, 09:09 PM   #7
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I bought my first Pentax DSLR in May 2008. Back then lenses were much cheaper in the US than in Japan. Can you guys believe that FA 50mm f/1.4 and FA 35mm f/2 were sold at B&H photo and Adorama at $199 and $299, respectively? On the other hand, I had an impression that camera bodies were a bit cheaper in Japan based on the price of K20D and K200D in the first half of 2008.

Currently, I still think price of lenses are a bit cheaper in the US.
For example, FA 31mm f/1.8 black is $1013 (using 100Yen=0.9 USD) from Fuji Camera according to the lowest price from kakaku.com, while B&H photo sells it at $964.95.

This is a bit off topic, but it is pretty nice that you can actually find and handle most of present Pentax DSLR bodies and lenses in many major camera stores in Tokyo or other large cities. During the new year break, I probably spent about 3 hours in total at Yodobashi Camera, Big Camera, and Map Camera in Tokyo, and saw at least 2 K-7 bodies and several K-x bodies along with a FA 43mm were purchased. Something definitely hard to experience here in SoCal.
02-01-2010, 10:48 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Pentaxor Quote
they are not that cheap anymore. although you got the luxury of getting a made in Japan lens instead.
Are any of the DA series lenses made in Japan? I don't think so. Its possible to get some of the FA 50mm in some inventories that were made in Japan, but they were making the FA 50mm f1.4 in Vietnam during the latest runs.

02-01-2010, 10:50 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by tokyoso Quote
I can't believe the prices on Pentax lenses I saw on amazon.com, adorama, etc for USA. I understand there was a price hike in 2009?

Are Pentax lenses selling like hot cakes over there? Would you still buy them at those prices?

Whats causing this?
I know its a separate topic, but its possible to pic up a lot of nice vintage glass in shops in Japan.
02-03-2010, 01:49 AM   #10
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in tokyo there are also lots of mom & pops used camera shops. this one actually sells quite a few pentax-m and super takumar lenses, at premium prices.

If you're looking for cheap old lenses etc. I think prices are much cheaper in USA. there isn't really a good auction site in japan like ebay for people to dump stuff. yahoo auction jpn comes close but ebay usa is cheaper.

I also see a lot of people buy used camera bodies. they usually come with original packages. it's fun to try camera and lenses at yodobashi and bic camera, but their price is a little high compared to discount outlets. if you're a tourist you get duty free plus some kind of discount point card for your next purchase...

i cant believe i actually bought another lens. i thought i was going to buy just the body w/ kit lens, but all these lenses look too tempting...

oh yeah, there is a list of mega used camera shops somewhere online, if you're looking for the nice vintage gears.
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Last edited by tokyoso; 02-03-2010 at 02:06 AM.
02-07-2010, 11:24 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by tokyoso Quote
in tokyo there are also lots of mom & pops used camera shops. this one actually sells quite a few pentax-m and super takumar lenses, at premium prices.

If you're looking for cheap old lenses etc. I think prices are much cheaper in USA. there isn't really a good auction site in japan like ebay for people to dump stuff. yahoo auction jpn comes close but ebay usa is cheaper.

oh yeah, there is a list of mega used camera shops somewhere online, if you're looking for the nice vintage gears.
That would be: asbCreative :: A Guide to New and Used Camera Shops in Tokyo or similar pages.

but indeed, in yahoo japan auctions you can get cheaper stuff than at those stores but when you are looking for something specific this stores can help, at a premium.
02-20-2010, 05:30 AM   #12
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I was just going over prices today

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-slr-lens-discussion/91001-dear-pen...tml#post926572

above is my post looking for help buying a wide. I went through every wide lens I could find from three sources and going to camera shops too, uner 500 dollars US. You have to give me advice though
02-20-2010, 05:36 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by PentaJP Quote
This is a bit off topic, but it is pretty nice that you can actually find and handle most of present Pentax DSLR bodies and lenses in many major camera stores in Tokyo or other large cities. During the new year break, I probably spent about 3 hours in total at Yodobashi Camera, Big Camera, and Map Camera in Tokyo, and saw at least 2 K-7 bodies and several K-x bodies along with a FA 43mm were purchased. Something definitely hard to experience here in SoCal.
It is weird that California seem to lack the big and good cameras stores that e.g. New York is full of
02-20-2010, 05:56 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by PentaJP Quote
....it is pretty nice that you can actually find and handle most of present Pentax DSLR bodies and lenses in many major camera stores in Tokyo or other large cities...
Yes, but if you ask them an actual QUESTION about the cameras, or especially the lenses, their eyes glaze with fear, as they run to find the one guy in the store who knows anything about SLR's (he is on break, so they grab any other person to look in the brochure and misunderstand it for you), report strange prices, and tell you that "you can't buy that body separate from a lens kit" or "that lens is only in a kit. This directed only at the huge stores like Yamada-denki, Yodobashi or Big Camera which sell mostly TVs and laptops, and some locations arent bad, but still it would be hilarious if it didn't waste my time so efficiently.

And I don't agree that you can handle the lenses. Maybe, IF there is a demo model in a glass case, but there are usually only two pentax lenses there, if any. If its in a box then opening is verboten which is funny because they don't usually seal the boxes with tape.

In smaller camera specific stores though, 4 of 5 salesmen I've spent time talking to shoot pentax!

Last edited by JesseDavis; 02-20-2010 at 06:02 AM.
02-20-2010, 05:26 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by tokyoso Quote
These are some prices of brand new lenses in Japan as of Feb 2, 2010 (converted to US dollars 1:90)
Those are almost exactly the prices in the US, too. It's possible you are being fooled by the list prices that initially show up in searches at some retailers, but once you add a lens to your cart the real price shows up.
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