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09-25-2013, 07:19 PM   #616
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QuoteOriginally posted by Andi Lo Quote
un-pentaxy must be the word of the day :P
I second the motion haha

though I really wonder where on earth did Pentax get the name "*ist"....
'twas a good call on naming the main camera line "K" though, it supports the existence of the mount, as well as getting away from Canon's #D and Nikon's D# format (and in recent years, the omission of the "D" altogether)

I guess in that sense the * designation is going away. This makes me worry though, since the * lenses were associated with being the top-tier lenses of Pentax, like Canon's L line. If they're going to replace it with just "HD" (a very, very overused term nowadays)... the names won't sound as original anymore (OK, names aren't that big an issue compared to the lenses themselves, of course!).

09-25-2013, 07:30 PM   #617
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QuoteOriginally posted by Alizarine Quote
I guess in that sense the * designation is going away. This makes me worry though, since the * lenses were associated with being the top-tier lenses of Pentax, like Canon's L line. If they're going to replace it with just "HD" (a very, very overused term nowadays)... the names won't sound as original anymore (OK, names aren't that big an issue compared to the lenses themselves, of course!).
Eh, the "Limited" designation has about as much cachet these days as the * does, and without the problems presented by the "*" designation.
If the "Zoom Limited" on the roadmap is the indication of things to come, I wouldn't be disappointed at all. And I was under the impression that the "HD" was the designation for the SMC replacement, which implies it will eventually be used on the entire lens lineup, so you'd need something else to differentiate the high-end line.
09-25-2013, 07:36 PM   #618
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QuoteOriginally posted by dcshooter Quote
Eh, the "Limited" designation has about as much cachet these days as the * does, and without the problems presented by the "*" designation.
The biggest difference between them is the weather sealing (at least for the DA* line, I don't think the A* ~ FA* lenses had any). As for the "smc" replacement, which I guess was mentioned somewhere before... won't completely happen, as the HD designation was reserved for premium lenses only, like Aero Bright (which, anyway, is never printed, though it exists).
09-25-2013, 07:49 PM   #619
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QuoteOriginally posted by Alizarine Quote
The biggest difference between them is the weather sealing (at least for the DA* line, I don't think the A* ~ FA* lenses had any). As for the "smc" replacement, which I guess was mentioned somewhere before... won't completely happen, as the HD designation was reserved for premium lenses only, like Aero Bright (which, anyway, is never printed, though it exists).
Changing the coating is a function of how many vacuum evaporators Ricoh installs, at $1,000,000 per, and the relative depreciation of the current coating equipment used for SMC and Aero Bright. If the old stuff is fully depreciated (and also worn out) there's nothing keeping Ricoh from converting entirely to HD.

09-25-2013, 08:04 PM   #620
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Main strategic asset of the K-mount are its lenses. If there's a mean to uplift the perception of already good lenses, Ricoh will do it. I mean, any sensible company buying Pentax thinking long-term would do it too. The "HD" buzzword is the rebranding exercise in the realm of lenses, which doesn't just describe a new coating, but a whole set of improvements that:

• justify higher price, which was necessary to achieve reasonable levels of profit
• perception of great quality

HD coating story also tries to fill the void caused by lack of any other news, and as such it is understandable many users think of it as "well, so what?". Like the old coating was bad? No, it wasn't, but the new buzzword was needed, to put the Pentax again in the headlines.

I cannot recall any other lens manufacturer raising this same level of "fuss" about the new coating — which would be a normal, silently performed procedure in the continuous improvement cycle. However, not many of them needed urgent rebranding and a new level of self-awareness like Pentax brand does need right now.

Last edited by Uluru; 09-25-2013 at 08:10 PM.
09-25-2013, 08:33 PM   #621
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QuoteOriginally posted by Uluru Quote
Main strategic asset of the K-mount are its lenses. If there's a mean to uplift the perception of already good lenses, Ricoh will do it. I mean, any sensible company buying Pentax thinking long-term would do it too. The "HD" buzzword is the rebranding exercise in the realm of lenses, which doesn't just describe a new coating, but a whole set of improvements that:

justify higher price, which was necessary to achieve reasonable levels of profit
perception of great quality

HD coating story also tries to fill the void caused by lack of any other news, and as such it is understandable many users think of it as "well, so what?". Like the old coating was bad? No, it wasn't, but the new buzzword was needed, to put the Pentax again in the headlines.

I cannot recall any other lens manufacturer raising this same level of "fuss" about the new coating which would be a normal, silently performed procedure in the continuous improvement cycle. However, not many of them needed urgent rebranding and a new level of self-awareness like Pentax brand does need right now.
Pentax, though, has a long history of pioneering coatings as a brand differentiator.
09-25-2013, 11:07 PM   #622
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QuoteOriginally posted by dcshooter Quote
Eh, the "Limited" designation has about as much cachet these days as the * does, and without the problems presented by the "*" designation.
If the "Zoom Limited" on the roadmap is the indication of things to come, I wouldn't be disappointed at all. And I was under the impression that the "HD" was the designation for the SMC replacement, which implies it will eventually be used on the entire lens lineup, so you'd need something else to differentiate the high-end line.
It's most likely "AW" that is going to be used for for high end lenses.
Which they have already used on 645 lenses since 645D was released and also on DA 560/5.6
09-25-2013, 11:30 PM   #623
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QuoteOriginally posted by Uluru Quote
Main strategic asset of the K-mount are its lenses. If there's a mean to uplift the perception of already good lenses, Ricoh will do it. I mean, any sensible company buying Pentax thinking long-term would do it too. The "HD" buzzword is the rebranding exercise in the realm of lenses, which doesn't just describe a new coating, but a whole set of improvements that:

justify higher price, which was necessary to achieve reasonable levels of profit
perception of great quality

HD coating story also tries to fill the void caused by lack of any other news, and as such it is understandable many users think of it as "well, so what?". Like the old coating was bad? No, it wasn't, but the new buzzword was needed, to put the Pentax again in the headlines.

I cannot recall any other lens manufacturer raising this same level of "fuss" about the new coating which would be a normal, silently performed procedure in the continuous improvement cycle. However, not many of them needed urgent rebranding and a new level of self-awareness like Pentax brand does need right now.
MMM lenses optimized for digital, anyone? Sigma redoing all its range with DC/DG version ?
Same stuff IMO.

09-25-2013, 11:44 PM   #624
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QuoteOriginally posted by Alizarine Quote
though I really wonder where on earth did Pentax get the name "*ist"....
If I recall correctly, the "ist" suffix signified a practitioner of some sort - like "scientist "or "dentist". Therefore, the *ist meant that (in Pentax's view) you could be anything you like. So it really was a wild card symbol. Naff, I know, but that's advertising for you!

QuoteOriginally posted by Uluru Quote
I cannot recall any other lens manufacturer raising this same level of "fuss" about the new coating
Nikon was fairly bullish about their Nano coating.
09-26-2013, 04:49 AM   #625
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QuoteOriginally posted by Cynog Ap Brychan Quote
Nikon was fairly bullish about their Nano coating.
As was practically everyone back in the mid-20th century (when mere coating) was a big advancement, up through the 60's,70's, and 80's when various multicoatings were introduced. Interestingly, SMC is probably the oldest and most well regarded (along with Fuji's EBC) of the Japanese multicoating systems. I can only think of Zeiss's T* coatings as having significantly more cachet.

While coatings have lost some of their visibility (pun intended) as a marketing feature for new lenses, there has been some resurgence lately with various manufacturers, including Pentax, touting their offerings specially optimized for digital with various new designations. So while I do agree that the new designation may primarily be a marketing one, and secondarily a true advance in technology, I don't think the rebranding is in any way unprecedented. Nor do I expect HD will be limited to only to the "premium" lenses. It will start there, of course, to establish it as a high-end feature, but it would be foolish for Ricoh to not trickle it down to all its lenses to signal an overall improvement in the quality of its offerings.
09-26-2013, 05:04 AM   #626
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QuoteOriginally posted by dcshooter Quote
I can only think of Zeiss's T* coatings as having significantly more cachet.
Didn't Zeiss licence their coating from Pentax? Or am I way off the mark?
09-26-2013, 05:23 AM   #627
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I know they had some working agreements at some point (I believe the Pentax name itself started with Zeiss), but the T coatings (without the *) go back to the 1930's, and I've heard the T* designation was actually a response to Pentax's success in marketing their own coatings under the SMC designation and that the Zeiss T* coatings were used, albeit not labeled as such, for some time before the designation was created.

QuoteOriginally posted by Cynog Ap Brychan Quote
Didn't Zeiss licence their coating from Pentax? Or am I way off the mark?
09-26-2013, 06:32 AM   #628
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Indeed, Pentax = Pentaprism Contax. The name belong to Zeiss Ikon Dresden, merged into Pentacon VEB in GDR.
09-26-2013, 04:21 PM   #629
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QuoteOriginally posted by Jonathan Mac Quote
Not quite all of them - the AF motor works!
LTD lenses don't have af motors.
09-26-2013, 04:36 PM   #630
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QuoteOriginally posted by Mistral75 Quote
Indeed, Pentax = Pentaprism Contax. The name belong to Zeiss Ikon Dresden, merged into Pentacon VEB in GDR.
That's what it was intended for under Contax use; for Asahi it was Pentaprism Reflex or Pentaprism Asahiflex (take your pick). Contax decided not to use it and Asahi bought the name from Contax a few years later, although they managed to miss the South African rights and had to use "Pentar" until they could buy those too.

There was definitely co-operation between Zeiss and Asahi over SMC coatings but I'm not sure whether Zeiss helped with the coatings themselves or just the way they were applied. SMC was a very big selling point for a long time.
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