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05-02-2011, 06:18 PM   #16
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Believe me guys... I hear what you are all saying. Remember, I started by saying I shoot non-WR cameras in the rain too and I've already taken the 43 out in the rain.

However, that still doesn't mean I can't wish the camera gods, or at least Pentax, would make a few wider primes that are weather-sealed does it?

Seriously though, non-weather-sealed primes may be less susceptible to water intake, but they still aren't weather sealed... and that spinning distance scale on the FA lenses can't be all that air tight. It isn't exactly fair to say they'll be just fine in the rain. They MIGHT be okay, but it isn't quite the same as having a weather-sealed lens...

am I wrong?

05-02-2011, 06:30 PM   #17
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My DA*50-135 is supposedly weather-sealed, or at least Pentax Australia assures me it is ... but I am not convinced it's any better than the FA43.

If I had to choose between the FA43 and the DA*50-135 in the rain, I'll go for the FA43.

As a matter of fact, I'm planning to go out shooting this evening (and the weather forecast is predicting thunderstorms) - I'm taking the primes out and leaving the DA* at home.
05-02-2011, 06:49 PM   #18
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I want a DA* normal prime.

For my next vacation I'll probably purchase a 18-55 WR for inclement weather, but I sure wish Pentax would give me the alternative of spending 4-5 times the money on a DA* 28mm F/2 or something similar. Just dust off the blueprints for the K, M, or A or go with that 30/1.4 that was on the roadmap a few years ago.

- Mike
05-02-2011, 07:00 PM   #19
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Have you considered the 50-135? Many people consider this lens to be one of the best zooms for picture quality that Pentax has made. And I can say it's ability to handle a heavy rain storm has been excellent. It is big and heavy (for a pentax lens) and seems to be a bit longer than what you tend to shoot, but the quality is superb and it has very good weather resistance.

05-02-2011, 07:19 PM   #20
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50-135... I owned one when I had the K-x. It's outstanding. However, it's too big for me to carry regularly and not my FOV choice at all. I'll own one again likely because it was great for shooting theater shows, but for anything else, it's really a bit useless for me.

Highland: I've been shooting nearly all primes for a couple of years now. It's my preference, even when it comes to those "stop the car" moments. As for zooms, there isn't much to choose from honestly, if I'm looking for weather-resistant. It's either the 16-50 or the 18-135, so "choosing carefully" isn't exactly an issue - LOL! Yes, there are lots of other good zooms out there, but not weather-sealed and/or not in the range I shoot.

Christine: Aren't you the one who bedazzled your K5?
I'm curious why you think the FA 43 is better in rain than the 50-135mm DA*?

Actually, I'm curious (seriously) why anyone would suggestion FA/DA Limiteds in the rain rather than lenses that are weather-sealed? I understand the zoom vs. no-zoom in the rain, but why would anyone suggest lenses without the proper seals where it attaches to the camera as a solution? I don't mean that to sound rude... really, I'm curious as to the thinking behind the suggestion, except for the fact that there is this void in the Pentax lineup...
05-02-2011, 07:23 PM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
I think whitewater kayaking with a camera exposed is asking a little much of a weather resistant camera.
That was the main reason I bought my E-3 several years ago. I bought a refurbished body because I expected to lose it eventually, but my E-3 survived many dunks, splashes, & dips with the 14-35 f/2 attached. I was not whitewater kayaking, but expedition kayaking. We still hit a few rapids on a few trips.
05-02-2011, 07:26 PM   #22
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QuoteOriginally posted by DRabbit Quote
I'm curious why you think the FA 43 is better in rain than the 50-135mm DA*?

Actually, I'm curious (seriously) why anyone would suggestion FA/DA Limiteds in the rain rather than lenses that are weather-sealed? I understand the zoom vs. no-zoom in the rain, but why would anyone suggest lenses without the proper seals where it attaches to the camera as a solution? I don't mean that to sound rude... really, I'm curious as to the thinking behind the suggestion, except for the fact that there is this void in the Pentax lineup...
I think they mean that since the screw drive lenses don't have electronic motors in them that they are less sensitive to water. The are all mechanical. Without an o-ring between the lens and body you are still at risk for water to enter the body and fry the camera.
05-02-2011, 07:44 PM   #23
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QuoteOriginally posted by Christine Tham Quote
In my opinion, the Limited primes don't really need weather sealing (at least, not from rain), since they have no electronic parts and are reasonably well protected against water droplets.

I have shot in heavy rain with my primes a few times and they all have survived.
Any lens that transmits aperture on K-mount has electronic parts. But yes, they are tightly built and have no lens motor.

05-02-2011, 08:21 PM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by DRabbit Quote
Christine: Aren't you the one who bedazzled your K5?
I'm curious why you think the FA 43 is better in rain than the 50-135mm DA*?
Yes I have the "Kittycam" (my new name for it)

The DA* is big and difficult to shield from the rain (in fact, impossible). The FA43 on the other hand is completely shielded from the rain when not in use as long as I point the camera downwards, which I do.

For the few seconds I lift the camera up for a photo, the chances of water penetration are pretty negligible.

Worst comes to the worst, I can always shield the camera and lens in a jacket, as Wheatfield suggested. Can't really do that with a DA* lens.

Now, if I was going kayaking, I may consider the DA*, but I probably won't bring a camera at all.

Although I am pretty relaxed about cameras getting wet - I have the Sony Bloggie (which is a tiny handheld HD camcorder) that I mount onto my bike when I cycle. It's not water-sealed at all, yet I have cycled in rain with it exposed and so far it is still okay (of course, I don't actually turn on the camera in the rain).

QuoteOriginally posted by Eruditass Quote
Any lens that transmits aperture on K-mount has electronic parts.
That's just a few resistors, which are not susceptible to water damage. It's paper based caps that you need to be worried about. Actually, any kind of capacitor, since they can potentially discharge. For example, you would not want the flash capacitor in the K-5 to get anywhere near water - won't be a happy outcome!
05-02-2011, 08:28 PM   #25
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QuoteOriginally posted by Winder Quote
Without an o-ring between the lens and body you are still at risk for water to enter the body and fry the camera.
Actually, the designers are pretty smart. Even if water enter the body, it may damage the sensor (unlikely) but the dangerous part of the camera (the flash capacitor) is still protected. Also, the main motherboard of the camera is also protected.

This is based on the schematics of the K10D. No doubt Pentax has refined the design for the K-5.

In the event the camera gets waterlogged, try holding it upright (the right way up) and let it dry naturally. Chances are, if the flash capacitor does not accidentally discharge, the camera will be okay.

This is one of the reasons why the high end water-sealed Canon cameras have no in-built flash. Canon just didn't want to take the risk.
05-02-2011, 08:48 PM   #26
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Well, you can get the DA*200 and DA*300. Fabulous primes, and both weather sealed.

Oh, you wanted small and wide? Hmmmm....

I hear you. Seems like they could make at least a couple of WS primes, but yeah, right now you're stuck.
05-02-2011, 08:55 PM   #27
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Christine...

I hear what you're saying about shielding the small limiteds from water... this is the technique I used when out in the rain with the FA 43...

However, while the 50-135 is hard, or impossible to shield, it wouldn't require it. It's weather-sealed.

Now, of course, it's unlikely I'd be out in the rain with the 50-135 anyway since the size makes it a turn off -- for me -- to carry anywhere quite frankly, but in a perfect world I'd rather have an FA 43 with the same type of weather-sealing of at least the 18-135. If shielding equipment with a hand really worked well, no one would build weather-sealed cameras and lenses at all.

The weather-sealed K-5 + FA 43 covered by hand is probably better than the non-weather-sealed M8 + 35 Biogon when it comes to being in the rain though. All is relative
05-02-2011, 09:00 PM   #28
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QuoteOriginally posted by DRabbit Quote
However, while the 50-135 is hard, or impossible to shield, it wouldn't require it. It's weather-sealed.
Actually, that's not the issue at all. The shielding is to prevent water from reaching the front of the lens.

With the DA*, in heavy rain, water will drip towards the front of the lens and eventually smear the lens surface. With the primes, that won't happen because the water drips off the camera.

Also, the main problem with lenses when raining is water condensation inside the lens as I take it indoors and outdoors - the bigger the lens the more susceptible.

The small primes are far less prone to water condensation. I know this from experience.

PS - I also think you misunderstood me about shielding. I don't attempt to shield the camera at all with my hands. I just turn the camera with the LCD facing upwards and rely completely on the K-5 weather sealing to protect it from rain. The K-5 then shields then lens.

So there is every reason to want a weather sealed camera but in my mind there's not much point in weather sealing small primes. I wouldn't want to pay a premium for it.
05-02-2011, 09:07 PM   #29
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QuoteOriginally posted by Christine Tham Quote

That's just a few resistors, which are not susceptible to water damage. It's paper based caps that you need to be worried about. Actually, any kind of capacitor, since they can potentially discharge. For example, you would not want the flash capacitor in the K-5 to get anywhere near water - won't be a happy outcome!
And just where did you get that information? The FA and newer lenses can transmit quite a bit of information:

QuoteQuote:
D1 — basic lens-body digital transmission: lens focal length, distance to subject, selected f-stop, lens physical size (for calculating whether the lens will interfere with the built-in flash), possibly other information.
D2 — advanced lens-body digital transmission: MTF, focal length at which the lens has its minimal length, possibly other information.
Summary of the K-Mount Evolution, Names, and Features

This is more than just some resistors, but rather at least includes a chip.

Regardless, I wouldn't mind so much if that got wet as it's probably quite resistant. What I would worry about is the fact that the mount does not have an O ring on it, meaning water can get inside the DSLR from the mount.

If only Pentax put an O-ring on the body side! Although I know it probably isn't practical and would wear significantly.

However, a over the lens mount area should be sufficient if it's not too bad.
05-02-2011, 09:08 PM   #30
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By the way, I seem to recall when the K10D first came out, there was an article in one of the Japanese camera mags which was an interview with the design team.

The whole philosophy of the weather sealing design was in the interview - including why they released the DA* lens with shielding and why they didn't update the small primes with weather sealing.

For exactly the reason I had given - because the body will shield the rain and snow from a tiny lens if you hold it with the back facing upwards. I think there was even a diagram describing it.

I don't have that article anymore - I think I saw it when I was in Japan whilst browsing a bookstore.
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