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02-11-2019, 10:05 AM   #166
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QuoteOriginally posted by Larrymc Quote
Automobiles have always been sold as an assembly so your argument doesn't hold water.
So what you are saying is that because of the past , changing the business model is not possible. So if the market conditions have changed, and the pricing method is the one adapted to the past, then what I say is that it's a recipe for failure. Failing to adapt to market changes if what makes young companies make old companies bankrupt, I see this all the time. Lets imagine that Pentax sell only bundles and in doing that, they are 50% cheaper than any competitor if you compare the price per lens or body, do you still go Canon and pay twice the price? There is something I must agree on: people are short sighted, they buy a camera and a lens, and 6 month later they buy another lens, and 6 months later they buy another lens. So, after 18 month they end-up having the same as if they bought the bundle on day 1, except they paid a price premium due to buying one item at a time. Now you will say "yes but buying a bundle now is more expensive than building the bundle over time because of interest rate", yes that would be right when the interest rate is high like it was 30 years ago, but these day , in europe for example, interest rate of money is near zero. Therefore, if I buy a $5000 bundle from Ricoh that represents 30% discount over Nikon for a similar combo, than I don't switch to Nikon, I stay with Pentax, and Nikon customer also come to Pentax because they realize the Pentax offer is better.



Last edited by biz-engineer; 02-11-2019 at 10:49 AM.
02-11-2019, 10:49 AM - 3 Likes   #167
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QuoteOriginally posted by superdave Quote
First idea, look at DA* lenses:- DA* 16-50mm (919€): this is a lens totally overpriced with lot of CA, soft edges and corners, who do not deserve its DA* label. I cannot use it for landscape photography.- DA* 50-135mm (1200€): I didn’t try it, but it seems to have good reputation. It’s more a portrait lens, and if I were a portrait photographer, I will fell that the lens has a slow AF, and is not good wide open.- DA* 55mm (749€): This lens is totally obsolete, there are many great 50mm lens in competitor catalog that outclass this lens, especially the Sigma 50mm. For landscape photography, I can use the 100€ DA 50mm/1.8 that have perfect quality corner to corner at f/5.6-f/11.- DA* 60-250mm: I didn’t try it but it should be a good lens.- DA* 200mm: is probably a top-quality glass.- DA* 300mm: is a top-quality glass that I own. But I really want it to be updated with a better motor. Current motor is slow, take time to start, and is not precise at all…. The lens is ruined by the AF.- DA* 11-18mm: I plan to buy it, if reviews are great and I cross fingers to not be disappointed by its edge image quality.To summarize, all the DA* lenses should be updated to HD coating and better motor. DA* 16-50 should be renewed with better image quality in priority as there is no top-quality zoom in the current Pentax lineup. DA* 55 and 50-135 need to be updated with better quality wide open, to deserve their DA* name. DA*200 and DA*300 need a better motor, HD coating and a may be a focus limited for the 300mm. And 60-250* could be renew with HD coating, or removed as the coming 70-200 f/4 will probably be better optically.DA Limited:- Primes: are okay as they are. Some perfect, others are better than others, but there good enough and beautifully made. I like their unique retro look and they’re fun to use. I would like more of them: 28mm, 135mm, renew the 100 Macro to Limited. On a first place I would like to use them for landscape work as I have the 70mm and its awesome, but others are less awesome and not necessarily easy to use on field (the cap of the 40mm is a good example, it is easy to lost).- Zoom: For having tested two copies of 20-40, I find that it is the worst lens in the Pentax lineup for non-portrait things. You cannot take a full landscape shot in focus because of an enormous non-corrected field curvature, especially at 40mm. A real deception to me!
Pretty much agree with all of this.

The 16-50 is the one most badly in need of an update. Every copy I have seen is de-centered to some extent, purple fringing and unusable wide open for my purposes. I can't imagine they are selling many at this point.
It is the only WR fast normal zoom available on the K-mount. I think they could sell a lot of these if they updated it.

Slightly disagree on the DA55. Get the DFA*50 if you need better wide-open performance. I would settle for faster AF motor on this and call it done.

50-135, 60-250, 200, 300. I would settle for upgraded coatings and new fast AF motors.

The DA limited's. The jewel in the crown IMO and one of the last unique selling points of Pentax. Need stronger marketing around these.


20-40. Yes runway field curvature at 40mm, but it is possible to master it for landscapes with experimentation and practice. It may have been designed specifically this way for OOF rendering at the long end for portraits and objects. I'm happy to take the trade off. This is possibly my favorite lens. Stunningly beautiful rendering. Wouldn't change anything on it.

Last edited by caliscouser; 02-11-2019 at 10:56 AM.
02-11-2019, 10:59 AM - 3 Likes   #168
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QuoteOriginally posted by biz-engineer Quote
So what you are saying is that because of the past , changing the business model is not possible. So if the market conditions have changed, and the pricing method is the one adapted to the past, then what I say is that it's a recipe for failure. Failing to adapt to market changes if what makes young companies make old companies bankrupt, I see this all the time. Lets imagine that Pentax sell only bundles and in doing that, they are 50% cheaper than any competitor if you compare the price per lens or body, do you still go Canon and pay twice the price? There is something I must agree on: people are short sighted, they buy a camera and a lens, and 6 month later they buy another lens, and 6 months later they buy another lens. So, after 18 month they end-up having the same as if they bought the bundle on day 1, except they paid a price premium due to buying one item at a time. Now you will say "yes but buying a bundle now is more expensive than building the bundle over time because of interest rate", yes that would be right when the interest rate is high like it was 30 years ago, but these day , in europe for example, interest rate of money is near zero. Therefore, if I buy a $5000 bundle from Ricoh that represents 30% discount over Nikon for a similar combo, than I don't switch to Nikon, I stay with Pentax, and Nikon customer also come to Pentax because they realize the Pentax offer is better.
J.C. Penney's, a long time U.S. retailer, nearly went bankrupt a few years ago. A business magazine described their situation by saying "They fired their old customers before they hired replacements", recognizing that loyal customers are one of the biggest assets a company has. With ILC cameras, those customers are kept largely by a joint appreciation of their lens mount; if your model were followed, you would be throwing that away, because your ideas would focus only on those who want to make a massive jump into the K-mount ecosystem .... Yes, Pentax needs new customers, and a system like this might help with that, but what Pentax needs to do is to focus on their current customers.

added: most likely, the cost of administering this plan at the corporate level would cost more than most other ways of attracting customers.

Last edited by reh321; 02-11-2019 at 11:25 AM.
02-11-2019, 11:34 AM - 2 Likes   #169
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QuoteOriginally posted by caliscouser Quote
Pretty much agree with all of this.

The 16-50 is the one most badly in need of an update. Every copy I have seen is de-centered to some extent, purple fringing and unusable wide open for my purposes. I can't imagine they are selling many at this point.
It is the only WR fast normal zoom available on the K-mount. I think they could sell a lot of these if they updated it.

Slightly disagree on the DA55. Get the DFA*50 if you need better wide-open performance. I would settle for faster AF motor on this and call it done.

50-135, 60-250, 200, 300. I would settle for upgraded coatings and new fast AF motors.

The DA limited's. The jewel in the crown IMO and one of the last unique selling points of Pentax. Need stronger marketing around these.


20-40. Yes runway field curvature at 40mm, but it is possible to master it for landscapes with experimentation and practice. It may have been designed specifically this way for OOF rendering at the long end for portraits and objects. I'm happy to take the trade off. This is possibly my favorite lens. Stunningly beautiful rendering. Wouldn't change anything on it.
Agree wholeheartedly. Especially on the assesment of the DA 20-40 limited. In this case dxo's measurements correspond quite nicely with my reality and they definitely helped to find the sweet spots of this lens:
Pentax HD DA 20-40mm F2.8-4 ED Limited DC WR mounted on Pentax K-3 : Measurements

@20mm/f5.6-11 high and even sharpness, low distortion, low vignetting -> good enough for landscapes and buildings etc.
@25mm/f5.6-11 same, less distortion -> good for landscapes and buildings, groups of people etc.
@30-35mm/f4-11 even sharpness, some vignetting -> groups of people, objects in context etc.
@40mm/f4-11 central sharpness and vignetting -> object isolation, portraits

No, it's neither a 18-35 f1.8 nor a DFA* 50 f1.4, but look at their size and weight...

But it works, because I like the rendering of it, the great coating, the handling, size and weight, environmental protection. It's a limited and it is limited, but if these sweet spots are also whrere the majority of your photographs is taken it can be very useful. As it is for me.

6 Days Ago   #170
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QuoteOriginally posted by biz-engineer Quote
So what you are saying is that because of the past , changing the business model is not possible. So if the market conditions have changed, and the pricing method is the one adapted to the past, then what I say is that it's a recipe for failure. Failing to adapt to market changes if what makes young companies make old companies bankrupt, I see this all the time. Lets imagine that Pentax sell only bundles and in doing that, they are 50% cheaper than any competitor if you compare the price per lens or body, do you still go Canon and pay twice the price? There is something I must agree on: people are short sighted, they buy a camera and a lens, and 6 month later they buy another lens, and 6 months later they buy another lens. So, after 18 month they end-up having the same as if they bought the bundle on day 1, except they paid a price premium due to buying one item at a time. Now you will say "yes but buying a bundle now is more expensive than building the bundle over time because of interest rate", yes that would be right when the interest rate is high like it was 30 years ago, but these day , in europe for example, interest rate of money is near zero. Therefore, if I buy a $5000 bundle from Ricoh that represents 30% discount over Nikon for a similar combo, than I don't switch to Nikon, I stay with Pentax, and Nikon customer also come to Pentax because they realize the Pentax offer is better.
Obviously, you can not convince me of the validity of your theory, so lets drop it and get back to most of the things I agree with you on.
6 Days Ago - 2 Likes   #171
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QuoteOriginally posted by superdave Quote
Quick answer, I think that most of the current DA lens line up is obsolete, and should not last another decade if Pentax want to stay alive in 10 years.
Dave - thanks for the comprehensive reply

You're definitely more demanding than me In fact, and I'm only guessing here, I believe you're probably a little more demanding than many or most folks here... but that's clearly your privilege, of course, and I respect your views.

I actually agree with a number of the issues you've raised, though; field curvature on the HD DA20-40 (we both experienced the same surprise here), upgrades required to HD coatings and especially SDM focusing motors. I also agree with the praise you've given to the optical performance of some of the DA* lenses and the DA Limited primes, and the fun aspect of the latter.

But whilst we essentially agree on numerous points, I think our view of the overall Pentax APS-C lens landscape is quite different, and that probably arises due to our individual use-cases and preferences. In terms of optical performance, I'm someone who enjoys vintage lenses with rendering character (and the flaws that sometimes contribute). As such, I expect to have to stop down a little, I expect that edge resolution won't be commensurate with the frame center. I own a number of the lenses you refer to - the DA Limiteds, D FA100/2.8 Macro WR, DA*60-250, some standard DA primes and zooms, and some older full-frame Pentax glass. I like the optical performance of them all... some more or less than others, but I do like them all, and I believe I can get pleasing results from every one of them. I've even come to appreciate the HD DA20-40 more, despite that field curvature... I just have to work with it rather than against it, and use it to its strengths The number of folks who so highly rate the lens, and the volume of fantastic photography produced by them, convinced me that I should be getting more use from it, and - slowly but surely - I am.

I recently ordered the updated HD version of the FA35/2, knowing full well that it's screw-drive, with no quick-shift manual focus, the same six diaphragm blades and basically the same optical performance as the older version, aside from the coatings. My buying decision probably tells folks a lot about what's important to me in that lens... the field of view, relatively fast aperture, resolution performance and rendering consistent with good, late-film-era glass.

I can't say for sure, but I reckon Ricoh / Pentax will be roundly criticised for the HD FA35/2 when popular websites, bloggers, vloggers and magazines publish their reviews. Why? Because these days, it seems some (many?) folks expect edge-to-edge sharpness from maximum aperture and down, with perfectly round out-of-focus highlights, no abberrations and virtually no distortion. They want images to look near-perfect from centre to corner at 100% reproduction on a 27" monitor. Those expectations often result in large, complex and expensive lenses such as the (undoubtedly excellent) D*FA50/1.4. I can certainly see a market for such lenses, yet I sincerely hope Ricoh doesn't desert those of us with more traditional tastes in favour of this more recent trend...

For the Pentax APS-C platform, I think the optical performance of the existing lens catalogue is mostly "good enough", and in a majority of cases "excellent", especially taking into account the competitive pricing which is an important part of the Pentax value proposition. SDM motors, though, should undoubtedly be upgraded, and better coatings are already on the horizon by default (it would seem) due to available manufacturing processes...

Last edited by BigMackCam; 6 Days Ago at 03:12 PM.
6 Days Ago   #172
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Not sure about the bundling concept. On the low end, Canikon and Pentax already do this. They bundle a variety of lenses with their entry/mid-level models. Canon and Nikon have MUCH bigger marketing budgets, so are probably more successful at this. Unless Pentax is willing to vastly up their marketing at a time when sales of this type of camera are shrinking, this isn't going to change.
As far as pro/prosumer level bundles, even if it's 30% lower than a comparable Canon or Nikon, I'm not sure that would do it, without a couple things. First, $5000+ is a lot to spend at once, so the market is small, even if it's a good deal, you might not get uptake. Second, a fair amount of Nikon and Canon business is sports/wildlife. Pentax doesn't have quite good enough bodies or lenses to compete there, and they would need much better marketing. Same thing with video. The current bodies aren't good enough and without improvements and marketing investment, just a better deal won't do it.

Is it possible? Maybe. But it would be a big risk on the part of Pentax. I'd bet a more likely strategy is positioning as sort of a cheaper Leica. Still a premium, high-quality product, focused on still photography.
6 Days Ago - 3 Likes   #173
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QuoteOriginally posted by SteveinSLC Quote
Unless Pentax is willing to vastly up their marketing at a time when sales of this type of camera are shrinking, this isn't going to change.
The cost would be prohibitive for such a small division. part of the appeal of Pentax is the prices aren't bumped up, because customers aren't paying for huge marketing presence. Those of us who buy for value would ditch the brand. There's a good chance customers from other brands wouldn't switch, a heavy marketing campaign has the potential to lose more customers than it gains.

QuoteOriginally posted by SteveinSLC Quote
Is it possible? Maybe. But it would be a big risk on the part of Pentax. I'd bet a more likely strategy is positioning as sort of a cheaper Leica. Still a premium, high-quality product, focused on still photography.
Exactly.....

6 Days Ago   #174
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QuoteOriginally posted by biz-engineer Quote
There is something I must agree on: people are short sighted, they buy a camera and a lens, and 6 month later they buy another lens, and 6 months later they buy another lens. So, after 18 month they end-up having the same as if they bought the bundle on day 1, except they paid a price premium due to buying one item at a time.
Customers who buy a bundle on Day 1 are a particular type of customer: one who is financially able to outlay the bundle price on the spot (credit or equity doesnít matter much, as you say later, in these days of low interest rates) and maybe one who understands precisely what it is they will want from the bundle. Thatís a mature market-segment customer, and they obviously exist as youíre an example. What fraction of the total market that represents is another question.

Itís a valid strategy, nonetheless, but one that would have to be supported by the manufacturer, down to the retail level. Big discounts from the distributors are possible, though the present ones seem mostly to move inventories that are too large, and not something theyíd want to become the norm without manufacturer support.
6 Days Ago   #175
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QuoteOriginally posted by ogl Quote
I was right - GRIII and DA*11-18/2.8


Well itís time for a be 645, the market has changed significantly since 2014. Fuji has 2 bodies out at low pric s and a rumoured modular unit coming and a 100mp variant . Hasty and phase have had to respond to the lost share .. I still get tempted by used 645 I see on market but the rf style Fuji (effectively a monster pro 2) calls to me
6 Days Ago   #176
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"20-40. Yes runway field curvature at 40mm, but it is possible to master it for landscapes with experimentation and practice. It may have been designed specifically this way for OOF rendering at the long end for portraits and objects. I'm happy to take the trade off. This is possibly my favorite lens. Stunningly beautiful rendering. Wouldn't change anything on it."

"Agree wholeheartedly. Especially on the assessment of the DA 20-40 limited. In this case dxo's measurements correspond quite nicely with my reality and they definitely helped to find the sweet spots of this lens:
Pentax HD DA 20-40mm F2.8-4 ED Limited DC WR mounted on Pentax K-3 : Measurements

@20mm/f5.6-11 high and even sharpness, low distortion, low vignetting -> good enough for landscapes and buildings etc.
@25mm/f5.6-11 same, less distortion -> good for landscapes and buildings, groups of people etc.
@30-35mm/f4-11 even sharpness, some vignetting -> groups of people, objects in context etc.
@40mm/f4-11 central sharpness and vignetting -> object isolation, portraits

No, it's neither a 18-35 f1.8 nor a DFA* 50 f1.4, but look at their size and weight...

But it works, because I like the rendering of it, the great coating, the handling, size and weight, environmental protection. It's a limited and it is limited, but if these sweet spots are also where the majority of your photographs are taken it can be very useful. As it is for me."

Couldn't agree more with both of these perspectives. I find that I tend to use mine mostly between 20 and 30mm, typically at f7.1 or f8, and the Camera Raw lens profile deals with the vignetting. I'd add one thing; when I originally got my 20-40 getting on for four years ago, I used it on my K-5 and while it was better than the kit lens and the 16-45, I wasn't exactly bowled over. THAT didn't happen until I changed to the K-3II, when the increased resolving power and the lack of AA filter made a very noticeable difference to this lens' performance. I imagine that it's probably slightly better again with the KP, and with whatever follows the K-3II (patiently waiting...!).
6 Days Ago - 2 Likes   #177
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I reject the notion that a Dealer knows in advance what set of lenses is the set I should have. Rather I would prefer progressive package discounts wherein I build a selection of body and lenses to suit my specific needs. That can be done now, without disrupting the production model.

Iím not quite sure how Pentax would develop improved and new lenses under your new model.
QuoteOriginally posted by biz-engineer Quote
So what you are saying is that because of the past , changing the business model is not possible. So if the market conditions have changed, and the pricing method is the one adapted to the past, then what I say is that it's a recipe for failure. Failing to adapt to market changes if what makes young companies make old companies bankrupt, I see this all the time. Lets imagine that Pentax sell only bundles and in doing that, they are 50% cheaper than any competitor if you compare the price per lens or body, do you still go Canon and pay twice the price? There is something I must agree on: people are short sighted, they buy a camera and a lens, and 6 month later they buy another lens, and 6 months later they buy another lens. So, after 18 month they end-up having the same as if they bought the bundle on day 1, except they paid a price premium due to buying one item at a time. Now you will say "yes but buying a bundle now is more expensive than building the bundle over time because of interest rate", yes that would be right when the interest rate is high like it was 30 years ago, but these day , in europe for example, interest rate of money is near zero. Therefore, if I buy a $5000 bundle from Ricoh that represents 30% discount over Nikon for a similar combo, than I don't switch to Nikon, I stay with Pentax, and Nikon customer also come to Pentax because they realize the Pentax offer is better.
6 Days Ago   #178
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
I’m not quite sure how Pentax would develop improved and new lenses under your new model.
In any case, imagine you are in a position to run a company in a competitive market, you have to decide if you are going to be the victim of market changes or if you are going to take advantage of the bad situation.
Today, the camera market is as follow: a lot of people have exited the photography hobby , using mobile phone for when they need to record an image of anything, and the number of ILC customers has fallen. Camera makers reacted buy offering cameras with larger sensors and/or more features at higher prices, which forces the market to shrink further. This is the best time to capture customers who would not buy to Sony, Canon and Nikon because of the price being too expensive for them. For Pentax what is better?: attacking on price in order to grab more customers, or keep raising price and lose customers. Pentax have to make a no frills full frame camera and undercut other brands. Also for the lenses, Pentax has to scrap old lenses and make a set of new lenses that are good optically with WR, Pentax coatings but not like the DFA*50. Pentax can hardly have the skills to make cameras like Nikon and Sony interms of AF (Canikon Sony already ahead of Pentax in those areas), but Pentax can certainly design a stripped down version of full frame, high built quality, simple controls, priced at an aggressive price in a bundle (using a bundle in order to offer more value to customers, without having revenue crippled by price drop). In fact Pentax could offer a camera model that is only sold as a bundle with lenses, and the offering would be facing no competition.

---------- Post added 12-02-19 at 09:15 ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
Rather I would prefer progressive package discounts wherein I build a selection of body and lenses to suit my specific needs.
Yes. Statistically, we know what sets customers are using depending on the kind of photography they do. It's not difficult to make a landscape bundle, and a wedding bundle etc.. You can have 3 or 4 different bundles, and never sell individual camera or lenses alone.

Last edited by biz-engineer; 6 Days Ago at 01:13 AM.
6 Days Ago   #179
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QuoteOriginally posted by microlight Quote
"20-40. Yes runway field curvature at 40mm, but it is possible to master it for landscapes with experimentation and practice. It may have been designed specifically this way for OOF rendering at the long end for portraits and objects. I'm happy to take the trade off. This is possibly my favorite lens. Stunningly beautiful rendering. Wouldn't change anything on it."

"Agree wholeheartedly. Especially on the assessment of the DA 20-40 limited. In this case dxo's measurements correspond quite nicely with my reality and they definitely helped to find the sweet spots of this lens:
Pentax HD DA 20-40mm F2.8-4 ED Limited DC WR mounted on Pentax K-3 : Measurements

@20mm/f5.6-11 high and even sharpness, low distortion, low vignetting -> good enough for landscapes and buildings etc.
@25mm/f5.6-11 same, less distortion -> good for landscapes and buildings, groups of people etc.
@30-35mm/f4-11 even sharpness, some vignetting -> groups of people, objects in context etc.
@40mm/f4-11 central sharpness and vignetting -> object isolation, portraits

No, it's neither a 18-35 f1.8 nor a DFA* 50 f1.4, but look at their size and weight...

But it works, because I like the rendering of it, the great coating, the handling, size and weight, environmental protection. It's a limited and it is limited, but if these sweet spots are also where the majority of your photographs are taken it can be very useful. As it is for me."

Couldn't agree more with both of these perspectives. I find that I tend to use mine mostly between 20 and 30mm, typically at f7.1 or f8, and the Camera Raw lens profile deals with the vignetting. I'd add one thing; when I originally got my 20-40 getting on for four years ago, I used it on my K-5 and while it was better than the kit lens and the 16-45, I wasn't exactly bowled over. THAT didn't happen until I changed to the K-3II, when the increased resolving power and the lack of AA filter made a very noticeable difference to this lens' performance. I imagine that it's probably slightly better again with the KP, and with whatever follows the K-3II (patiently waiting...!).
About the 20-40, my point of view was as a landscape photographer. I was able to take beautiful portraits of my cats with it (lol), the bokeh was very pleasant so as color rendition. But clearly it hasn't been designed for landscape and it cannot repace the 40mm and the 21mm in this regard. The runaway field curvature make it impossible to use hyperfocal or other focusing method. When I got the lens I taken 500 images with various settings, and on the 500, only 2 was tack sharp from corner to corner. The 498 others has the edges completetly out of focus... I never was able to reproduce the tack sharp images again, and in one year, I was not able to get sharp landscape image with this lens at 40mm. At 20mm, images looks sharp, not better than an entry level zoom. Moreover I like to take cityscape at night and the lens produce awful sunstar. The only think that blew my mind, was its really impressive flare resistance. I was able to shoot directly into the sun with absolutly no flare. My second copy was not better, so I gave up... Problem is that review check the lenses on a flat subject at close distance but results do necessarely not apply on the field...

After that I tried 40mm and 35mm Ltd, the difference in sharpness was impressive (with 40mm better than 35mm). But I do not keep them because of occasional focus problem in night scene. Sometime the lenses refuse to focus or confirm focus but subject was out of focus, even in LiveView.

So right now I am in need of a good standard zoom for landscape work, but cannot found something good enough in Pentax lineup... I am waiting CP+ interview for an unlikely new 16-50 anouncement or at least a new roadmap with a DA* zoom... but I am pretty sure I will order the Sigma 18-35 the day after CP+.

---------- Post added 12-02-19 at 10:58 ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by BigMackCam Quote
Dave - thanks for the comprehensive reply

You're definitely more demanding than me In fact, and I'm only guessing here, I believe you're probably a little more demanding than many or most folks here... but that's clearly your privilege, of course, and I respect your views.

I actually agree with a number of the issues you've raised, though; field curvature on the HD DA20-40 (we both experienced the same surprise here), upgrades required to HD coatings and especially SDM focusing motors. I also agree with the praise you've given to the optical performance of some of the DA* lenses and the DA Limited primes, and the fun aspect of the latter.

But whilst we essentially agree on numerous points, I think our view of the overall Pentax APS-C lens landscape is quite different, and that probably arises due to our individual use-cases and preferences. In terms of optical performance, I'm someone who enjoys vintage lenses with rendering character (and the flaws that sometimes contribute). As such, I expect to have to stop down a little, I expect that edge resolution won't be commensurate with the frame center. I own a number of the lenses you refer to - the DA Limiteds, D FA100/2.8 Macro WR, DA*60-250, some standard DA primes and zooms, and some older full-frame Pentax glass. I like the optical performance of them all... some more or less than others, but I do like them all, and I believe I can get pleasing results from every one of them. I've even come to appreciate the HD DA20-40 more, despite that field curvature... I just have to work with it rather than against it, and use it to its strengths The number of folks who so highly rate the lens, and the volume of fantastic photography produced by them, convinced me that I should be getting more use from it, and - slowly but surely - I am.

I recently ordered the updated HD version of the FA35/2, knowing full well that it's screw-drive, with no quick-shift manual focus, the same six diaphragm blades and basically the same optical performance as the older version, aside from the coatings. My buying decision probably tells folks a lot about what's important to me in that lens... the field of view, relatively fast aperture, resolution performance and rendering consistent with good, late-film-era glass.

For the Pentax APS-C platform, I think the optical performance of the existing lens catalogue is mostly "good enough", and in a majority of cases "excellent", especially taking into account the competitive pricing which is an important part of the Pentax value proposition. SDM motors, though, should undoubtedly be upgraded, and better coatings are already on the horizon by default (it would seem) due to available manufacturing processes...
Sure I probably am more demanding than folks here, but its because I want to stay on APS-C and create best quality prints from my photos. Congrats on your pruchase, I am sure your new FA35/2 is a great lens, I know that it is sharp edge to edge when stopped down and as an old lens it have the advatage to have straight aperture blades (I do not like round aperture blades). I would have been interested in it, but it has two blocking problems for me. 1) it have only 6 aperture blades, and for cityscape that produce pretty bad sunstars... 2) the lineup is missing an as good 24mm and 28mm lens to pair with it, so it cannot replace a standard zoom, espcially because I want to replace my 12-24 with the 11-18 and 24mm is a focal I am using a lot.


QuoteOriginally posted by BigMackCam Quote
I can't say for sure, but I reckon Ricoh / Pentax will be roundly criticised for the HD FA35/2 when popular websites, bloggers, vloggers and magazines publish their reviews. Why? Because these days, it seems some (many?) folks expect edge-to-edge sharpness from maximum aperture and down, with perfectly round out-of-focus highlights, no abberrations and virtually no distortion. They want images to look near-perfect from centre to corner at 100% reproduction on a 27" monitor. Those expectations often result in large, complex and expensive lenses such as the (undoubtedly excellent) D*FA50/1.4. I can certainly see a market for such lenses, yet I sincerely hope Ricoh doesn't desert those of us with more traditional tastes in favour of this more recent trend...
Probably, if I were Pentax I would not have announced the two new lenses on the same day... and I would have been more discreet on the FA35/2. In France Pentax FR has the 35mm in its facebook banner... I can't understand why they focus on the 35mm and not on the DA* 11-18mm.... DA* 11-18 is the kind of lens that can convert a photographer to Pentax. It is the perfect lens for astrophotographer, Pentax should market it more... and pair it with a great DA* standard zoom and a new body quickly. I cross my fingers
6 Days Ago   #180
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Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Hampshire, UK
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Iím sorry to hear of your issues with the 20-40 superdave; I have to say that itís not my experience. You go on to say that youíve also had focus issues with the 40 and 35 Limited - are you sure that itís not your camera body thatís at fault? What do you use?
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