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11-07-2007, 06:15 AM   #1
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Pentax prices

We often see inflated prices for Pentax lenses but it would seem that Pentax has always been that way.

I was reading an article about Terence Donovan, which included the following note:

Last June 12th, 1997, Terence Donovan's equipment has been auctioned by Christie's South Kensington. His outfit included several Pentax, Nikon and Canon 35mm SLR's as well as Pentax 6x7 outfits and large format cameras and lenses. Lot 92 (Asahi Pentax 6x7 body + grip + Polaroid back + Super-Takumar 6x7 3.5/55mm + SMC Pentax 6x7 2.8/165mm) was sold at £1,092 (expected price £400-600), lot 93 (Asahi Pentax 6x7 body no.4132433 + SMC Takumar 6x7 4.5/75mm + SMC Pentax 6x7 2.4/105mm + SMC Pentax 6x7 4/150mm + SMC Takumar 6x7 3.5/165mm + case) was sold at £1,610 (e.p. £700-1,000), lot 94 (Asahi Pentax 6x7 body no.4148313 + TTL pentaprism finder in maker box + SMC Pentax 4/45mm + SMC Takumar 6x7 4.5/75mm + SMC Pentax 6x7 2.8/90mm + 2 extension tube sets) was sold at £1,840 (e.p. £800-1,000), lot 95 (Pentax K1000 no.7370829 + SMC Pentax-M 2.8/40mm no.5137024) was sold at £299, lot 96 (Pentax MZ-5 serial obscured + SMC Pentax-FA 4/28-70mm AL no.4040950, camera baseplate with manuscript TERENCE DONOVAN and back with label THE GURKHA WELFARE TRUST, instruction booklet and makerís box) was sold at £1,035 (e.p. £300-500), lot 97 (Pentax MZ-10 no.8293223 + SMC Pentax-F 4.5-5.6/35-80mm) was sold at £460 (e.p. £150-200). You see Donovanís equipment was auctioned well over expected prices.
More about Donovan here, here and here.

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11-07-2007, 09:44 AM   #2
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Wow, those prices are insane, but I guess it kind of makes sense since this was before dSLRs so film cameras were still expensive and the equipment belonged to a famous photographer.

Looking at the Wikipedia article, the first dSLR to actually compete with film was the Nikon D1 and that wasn't released until 1999. Incidentally, the image of a modern dSLR that the article uses at the top is a K10D .
11-13-2007, 04:03 AM   #3
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They're insanely inflated down here, Down Under.

Last time I checked, the Aussie Dollar was trailing the USD by only ten or so cents, yet the price for, say, an FA f1.4 50mm, is ~$350AU, online. Which should mean it should sell in the states for ~$300US, right? Nope, about $180.

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