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11-14-2008, 05:18 PM   #1
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DA*60-250: not quite there yet but it's coming!

Everything happens!

Today I had the pleasure of toying around with the mythical, always soon to come, DA*60-250f4 SDM !!

It was there, quietly waiting for me and snugly attached to a K20 at Paris Photoshow...

Since there were not a lot of people (it was early in the afternoon), I could play with it for some time (actually, I went back 4 times after playing with some other toys from different manufacturers).

So the good thing is that it does exists and will probably be released early next year... that's a very encouraging thought: last time I had seen it, it was in a sealed glass cabinet, and had been so for two years...
Build quality is on par with the other DA*: very high, solid and tight.

It is a big fella, even more when zooming in as it extends quite a bit at the long end but balance was OK with the K20. The 50-135 feels like a dwarf lens next to it!
AF was decently fast and the AF's throw looks shorter than on the 50-135...

Unfortunately, I have the feeling (well, at least I hope) that it was a very early prototype because it was "functionally limited" if I may use such a politically correct wording.

AF had a strong tendency to hunt before acquiring focus and when it did, I just could not get a sharp shot: heavy fuzziness and strange halos around highlights at all settings...

Also, the zoom seemed to have a problem: going from 200mm to 250mm almost didn't change the framing.

Strangely enough, that didn't really alarm me: results are so bad it can only be because it's an early prototype that has been bumped around in all recent photoshows.

It's still a pity that the Pentax guys at the booth did not care to calibrate it better because quite a lot of people who tried it went back thinking that Pentax cameras were not so good.

I played with other cameras (K-M with 16-50, k20 with DA300 and 50-135) and all were focusing fine, tending to prove that the problem was with the sample of the 60-250 but still, I wish they payed a bit more attention to this before displaying the lens.

I signaled the "problems" to a nice hostess but she really didn't care that much... she was probably not even from Pentax I guess...

Anyway, it's coming, can't wait to see the tests!

11-14-2008, 05:44 PM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by lol101 Quote
Everything happens!

Today I had the pleasure of toying around with the mythical, always soon to come, DA*60-250f4 SDM !!

It was there, quietly waiting for me and snugly attached to a K20 at Paris Photoshow...

Since there were not a lot of people (it was early in the afternoon), I could play with it for some time (actually, I went back 4 times after playing with some other toys from different manufacturers).

So the good thing is that it does exists and will probably be released early next year... that's a very encouraging thought: last time I had seen it, it was in a sealed glass cabinet, and had been so for two years...
Build quality is on par with the other DA*: very high, solid and tight.

It is a big fella, even more when zooming in as it extends quite a bit at the long end but balance was OK with the K20. The 50-135 feels like a dwarf lens next to it!
AF was decently fast and the AF's throw looks shorter than on the 50-135...

Unfortunately, I have the feeling (well, at least I hope) that it was a very early prototype because it was "functionally limited" if I may use such a politically correct wording.

AF had a strong tendency to hunt before acquiring focus and when it did, I just could not get a sharp shot: heavy fuzziness and strange halos around highlights at all settings...

Also, the zoom seemed to have a problem: going from 200mm to 250mm almost didn't change the framing.

Strangely enough, that didn't really alarm me: results are so bad it can only be because it's an early prototype that has been bumped around in all recent photoshows.

It's still a pity that the Pentax guys at the booth did not care to calibrate it better because quite a lot of people who tried it went back thinking that Pentax cameras were not so good.

I played with other cameras (K-M with 16-50, k20 with DA300 and 50-135) and all were focusing fine, tending to prove that the problem was with the sample of the 60-250 but still, I wish they payed a bit more attention to this before displaying the lens.

I signaled the "problems" to a nice hostess but she really didn't care that much... she was probably not even from Pentax I guess...

Anyway, it's coming, can't wait to see the tests!
I may never buy this lens and I'm not particularily waiting for this lens BUT it is ridiculously long time.

12:57:01, 21 October 2005 (GMT)
Hi Paul,
All rumours I've recently heard were going into the constant F 4 aperture, but an exceptional focal range (60-250)! Well, if you need and want a fast F 2.8 zoom, try and get the Pentax FA* 80-200 or, as an alternative the new Sigma 70-200 DG version.

Cheers,
Henner

http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/read.asp?forum=1036&message=15525848&q=60250&qf=m


You would think that they were building a space shuttle....................
THREE years and you are looking at an "early prototype".... Am I the ONLY one that finds this odd???

Last edited by jeffkrol; 11-14-2008 at 08:56 PM.
11-14-2008, 06:35 PM   #3
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How much does the barrel extend when you zoom?
11-14-2008, 06:56 PM   #4
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That must be the same prototype ogl was discussing & provided a link to images produced w/it. I hope it was the same physical one actually, as it would worry me more if multiple samples produce the same aberrations and failings in the same way. :ugh:

11-15-2008, 07:13 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by lol101 Quote
So the good thing is that it does exists and will probably be released early next year...
hmm, I just came back from the Digital Photodays in my town, and the official for Pentax Germany told me it would "most probably" be available in the stores end of November for about 1300€. DA* 55 1.4 and the Converter 1.4 should not be released before spring 2009 according to him ...... last time I checked with these guys, I got the opposite answers. So I guess I will have to wait until I see the first one i the store .....
11-15-2008, 07:45 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by m8o Quote
That must be the same prototype ogl was discussing & provided a link to images produced w/it. I hope it was the same physical one actually, as it would worry me more if multiple samples produce the same aberrations and failings in the same way. :ugh:
It most certainly is the same lens: I checked the post by ogl and what he says is too ressemblant with what I saw to be a coincidence.

And don't worry, it is just not possible that talented opticians like Pentax would release such a bad lens.

What it may mean though is that it is still pretty far from being in a "production" state.
11-15-2008, 07:49 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by CreV Quote
How much does the barrel extend when you zoom?
Well, I'd say a good 15cm.

It is a fairly big lens, much less compact than a 70-200f4.
11-15-2008, 11:08 AM   #8
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I probably tested the same lens on my K20D this morning.

The lens looked good and solid, I made a few shots @ f4.0 with it but after I uploaded the photos on my Mac, I saw that they were shot at about 1/15s Yep, a beginner mistake. However they didn't look bad, but I need to compare in real like (and full light) to make my opinion.

Focus seemed to me nearly as fast and accurate as on the DA 200 & DA 300 I tested nearby. I compared also to the competition from Tamron and Sigma (on a Nikon D70 for Tamron and on my K20D for Sigma), and it felt about the same.

I definitively need such a zoom for a significant part of my photo sessions as I board a sail boat a few weeks a year. So I will make some more testing and comparisons when it will be available for real (Q1 2009 according to the sale person)

Regards,
Guillaume

11-15-2008, 11:25 AM   #9
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Ogl said it was very fast and very sharp in the other thread. The sample was probably a dud.

I honestly also wonder why it took Pentax 2 years to get this lens out the factory doors.
11-15-2008, 12:15 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by ftpaddict Quote
Ogl said it was very fast and very sharp in the other thread. The sample was probably a dud.

I honestly also wonder why it took Pentax 2 years to get this lens out the factory doors.
It isn't out the doors yet.........
I do find it odd that they have released what seems like a dozen lenses under 100mm FL in the past couple of years, and have completely ignored anything longer than 135mm during this time.
11-15-2008, 12:28 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
...and have completely ignored anything longer than 135mm during this time.
When were the DA* 200 and 300mm released? I guess it's easier to wrap an existing design in new overalls and sell them as new products.
11-15-2008, 02:25 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by ftpaddict Quote
When were the DA* 200 and 300mm released? I guess it's easier to wrap an existing design in new overalls and sell them as new products.
The voice of ignorance has spoken once again ! Whilst the DA* 200 is most likely a FA*200/2.8 with up to date coatings there was no Pentax lens in the past that resembled optically the DA* 300/4 in elements-groups, min. focus
distance and so on Pentax Extreme Telephoto Prime Lenses.

At least this time you were 50% right, little fellow you're improving!

Keep it up!
Radu
11-15-2008, 02:27 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by ftpaddict Quote
Ogl said it was very fast and very sharp in the other thread. The sample was probably a dud.

I honestly also wonder why it took Pentax 2 years to get this lens out the factory doors.
Right, it wasn't ogl's post I checked, it was this one from another site from a guy who tried one at Photokina: same results as the one I got.

Pentax 60-250 f4 à la Photokina => gros problème

Most certainly a dud touring the photoshows...

Or... the lens has a special degraded "french mode" to deter frogs from buying Pentax....
11-15-2008, 04:44 PM   #14
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I tried it at the Photokina on my K10D... (200 iso 1/25" F4.5) Handheld.




QuoteOriginally posted by lol101 Quote
Pentax 60-250 f4 à la Photokina => gros problème

Most certainly a dud touring the photoshows...

Or... the lens has a special degraded "french mode" to deter frogs from buying Pentax....
The guy says all the other lenses were under a cover. This is not true, only the 55mm was a not functional (AF problem) pre series lens...

Last edited by fs999; 11-15-2008 at 04:50 PM.
11-15-2008, 05:15 PM   #15
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Hi there, more confirmations - it has finally appeared in the Pentax Canada website;
smc PENTAX DA* 60-250mm F4 ED[IF] SDM

Not yet in the shops though..... maybe for Christmas?
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