Lens Prices

Discussion in 'Pentax' started by john_behrends, Apr 5, 2012.

  1. Just checked prices on Pentax lenses and almost fell off my chair!
    Glad I bought the DFA 100mm when I did, it is now about $300 more than when I got mine in January 2012.
    I was seriously considering purchasing the 55mm DA*, but will have to wait at this point. It is now priced at $799.
    Not sure if this bodes well for us Pentaxians. Probably increases the value of what lenses we do own though.
  2. Maybe, maybe not. If the system gets over priced, people won't see value in expanding and the prices will fall for used gear as people sell off.
    Personally I don't care, a lot of people "invest" in camera equipment, but like housing, cameras are generally not a guaranteed investment.
    we've been talking for years about this massive selloff looming, and I haven't seen it. Rest assured, if it comes, I'm buying in.
  3. Boy, are they shooting themselves in the foot..! After the announcement of a few new lenses to come, especially the much needed 1.4x, I had decided to return to Pentax. Even ordered and received a K5. It went straight back. I've had it.
    A word as to the new lenses... 560mm f/5.6..? Sounds a bit long in the tooth to me. That would bring us to +800mm, sensor crop taken into account. I wonder why none of the manufacturers give us a 400mm anymore, except for the EF 400mm f/5.6 which is a fairly dated piece o'glass. No IS. If only Tokina would redesign their legendary compact 400 (had at least a dozen of them with various systems, over the years) for dg SLR's..!
    Maybe in my next life.
  4. stemked

    stemked Moderator

    Hi Wolf.
    A 400mm f5.6 would be nice, but I, for one am delighted to see a prime in the +500mm range. If I hadn't just purchased a 600mm f5.6 A I would be one of the first persons standing in line waiting for the lens. The only thing my lens lacks is autofocus but that isn't deal breaker for me.
    Yes, I wish the lenses were cheaper. But I think that's true of all things. Reality bites. I hope they come back down.
  5. Yeah, ouch. I've had the da70 and da35 macro on my short list for a while. Both are now $699 at Adorama. This makes the used market certainly look more appealing.
  6. when anything gets on the short list, the prices climb as in this instance the price on new has esculated and and the used market will escalate also. No win situation here:
  7. If anybody wants to see a list of the price increases for each lens, they can find it here at PF. A few choice lenses:
    • DA* 16-50mm f/2.8: From $799.95 to $1,499.95 (87.5% increase).
    • DA* 50-135mm f/2.8: From $849.95 to $1,599.95 (88.2% increase).
    • DA* 60-250mm f/4: From $1295.95 to $1999.95 (54.3% increase).
    • DFA 100mm f/2.8 macro: From $599.95 to $849.95 (41.7% increase).
    • DA 14mm f/4 Ltd: From $699.95 to $949.95 (35.7% increase).
    On the other hand, the FA and FA Limiteds remain at the same price...so now the Ltds don't seem so expensive, huh? :-D
    I'm laughing because it keeps me from going crazy.
    One question for Pentax: Has the reliability of the DA* 16-50 increased by 87.5%?
  8. What troubles me most is that the Nikon 24-70 2.8 FX is only $300 more than the DA*16-50 2.8 cropped
  9. Miserere just sent me the list of highway robbery, err I mean price increases that Pentax is now asking.
    This deserves capitol letters. THE DA16-50MM IS A F***ING PIECE OF CRAP AT $799. In no way worth $1499 now. I can't say that loud enough or emphatically enough. Lousy focus, barrel distortion, nowhere near sharp enough (decentering), not wide enough, not long enough, poorly built. ARRRG I could go on. Having owned 3 of these paperweights, choosing to raise the price on this lens when it should be $499, would keep me from ever looking a the line seriously again.Why? It's a cornerstone lens and focal range for any brand, APSc or FF.
    Now, while I think this is outrageous, the other brands are also robbers. Nikon, which I shoot now, had raised the prices on most lenses after the earthquake and there's no sign of any reductions. For me it's forced looking only at the 3rd party options. I don't shoot above 100mm very often but need a 70-200mm. Having recently sold my Sigma 70-200mm, the only choice is Tamron because with the Nikon at $2400, they ain't getting my money. Tamron's 28-75 at $499 vs the Nikon 24-70mm at $1900, make the choice obvious.Oh and the Canon is $2300.00
    So that quick comparison begs the question. Is Sigma and Tamron (also for many - Tokina) loosing money or are the name brand company's (add Sony to this list as well), ripping us off just cause we drank the koolaide and only 'name brand will do'.
    These prices force a different choice when buying. Consider the 3rd party lineups that support the camera body you might buy before buying any brand. I you dont have much choice in 3rd party alternatives, choose another brand of body. That in itself, weakens choosing Pentax.
  10. FWIW the Tamron 28-75 is very nice. This move could be great for the 3rd party manufacturers.
  11. Matt Burt wrote:
    FWIW the Tamron 28-75 is very nice. This move could be great for the 3rd party manufacturers.​
    I'd point out that Sigma has been pricing its new lenses much higher than the models they're replacing, and much closer to the OEM pricing than they used to be. Let's wait to see whether Tamron follows suit; they've announced a new 24-70mm f/2.8 (with image stabilisation) and I doubt it'll be priced at $500.
  12. Holy *X&$#**X&$#**X&$#**X&$#*! And the DA 16-50 was one of the few lenses I sort of wanted. Though I have been waiting for the successor.
    The other being a DA 60-250 (don't really need it, kinda need the 16-50 since the 28-70 2.8 I have is a little long at the short end for me).

    Hmm, I guess I don't need it.
  13. Miserere wrote:
    Let's wait to see whether Tamron follows suit; they've announced a new 24-70mm f/2.8 (with image stabilisation) and I doubt it'll be priced at $500.​
    Well whaddya know, just today Tamron announced pricing and availability: $1,300 (and confirmed at B&H right now), available for Canikon and Sony. No mention of Pentax.
  14. Yikes. So much for Pentax being "the affordable brand." Cripes.
    Nikon is looking better and better, especially with their excellent 35/1.8 still priced at a very reasonable $199.
  15. Pentax hasn't been the affordable brand for some time; this just cements it. (Or cements it for those in the USA when the rest of us had the jump on "expensive" by 2-3 years.)
    Peter, I always thought the lowly DA 16-45mm was a better lens than the DA*16-50mm. Sure, the latter has a one stop advantage and weather-sealing, but the couple of times I used it I found it quite poor (as you say). OTOH the DA 16-45 renders impeccable images with no fears about the AF failing!
  16. Few like to talk about it publicly, but it seems obvious they're trying to take us, meaning customers around the world, to the cleaners in order to afford a certain, and certainly necessary clean-up and re-building job...
    Justin, I suggest you get the highly rated Tamron AF 17-50mm f/2.8 SP XR Di II LD Aspherical, while it's still available here & there in its non VC version..! Great lens, great ratings, usually comes with a very prolonged warranty.
    Check out: http://www.photozone.de/nikon--nikkor-aps-c-lens-tests/637-tamron175028d7000?start=2
  17. Apparently this strategy is meant to rebuild the non existent dealer network and shaft the grey market.
    I never could understand why makers sell stuff to the grey resellers so they could undercut the dealers.
  18. Robin, I entirely agree with you on the 16-45mm. A superior lens in all respects. I owned it all through the time I had the DA* and used it as a backup but it often was the primary lens. I actually had to use it in a rain storm while shooting a wedding and realized that it could take the weather just fine. After that, the DA* was gone.
    I agree that all OEM brands have really taken advantage of us. Some of these lenses are excellent, no question. They are also, not worth anywhere close to the prices being asked. Look at this logically. Is the DA* 16-50mm in terms of material, R&D cost, engineering and manufacturing cost really worth more than a K-5? Of course not. Is the Nikon 70-200mm VRII cost more to build than a D700? Also factor in that many of these lenses far outlive the camera bodies with a 2-3 year sales window. They can design a lens that is sold for 5-10+ years without any further input costs, thus amortizing the R&D cost over a greater period of time. The lens prices should remain stable or even drop a bit over time, not increase. It's taking advantage just a bit too much.
  19. I waited one day too long to pull the trigger on a DA 70. Took a look at B&H and went directly to KEH and picked up a LN- for $484. Thrilled to find it after the price rise.
  20. A correction from Mis' list above, it was the DA14/2.8 that's now $950. The DA15/4 Limited increased from $510 to $650.
    I saw this on Tuesday night and jumped on one of the last $1200 DA* 60-250/4 available on e-bay from a popular Canadian seller. I'd already been thinking of getting one this year, but it wasn't going to happen if the price was any higher than that (list price now two grand!).
    It arrived yesterday, and it's a pretty impressive hunk of equipment. Hope I don't need warranty service b/c that may be difficult.
    I still sometimes pine for a 50-135 but not at that price. Unlike the 60-250, these are relatively common on the used market (though I expect those prices will rise too). I suspect the old prices are probably gone forever but there may be significant rebates at some point. Other posters here have a point that Pentaxians aren't alone here -- Nikon and Sony have also had significant price hikes and most new releases from all makes are at higher price points than expected.
    While I agree with the premise that the DA* 16-50/2.8 is a bit of an underperformer -- not even clearly better optically than the fast standard zooms from Sigma & Tamron -- should mention that Nikkor 17-55/2.8 (no stabilization!) retails for $1400 and Canon 17-55/2.8 IS (inferior build) goes for $1180. I am doubting that Pentax will keep the DA* 16-50 at this announced level -- there will likely be frequent deals of some sort available. This really is a lens crying out for a "Mk II" though -- some optical improvements and a chance for Pentax to relegate this lenses relatively poor reputation to history.
    Count me among the fans of the DA16-45/4. While I hardly use mine now that I have the 17-70/4, this lens remains a screaming bargain -- I'm surprised that Pentax hasn't killed it or jacked up the price. Build quality is relatively low by current standards but it does what its specs say it'll do with flair -- welcome improvement at the wide and long end vs. the kit lens. Good close focus, reliable screwdrive AF with usable focus ring, and cheap for a 16mm wide end.
  21. stemked

    stemked Moderator

    Rats! I was looking at the 15mm f4 DA for a light weight travel lens. Oh well, not going to happen.
  22. Andrew wrote:
    Build quality is relatively low by current standards but it does what its specs say it'll do with flair​
    Hopefully the lens doesn't flair that much! :-D
    And thanks for pointing out my DA 14mm confusion. I did think 1 grand for an f/4 prime was extra excessive and now I see why.
  23. Mis, I think you're messing with me but I did say 'flair' rather than 'flare'. The thought of possible confusion occurred to
    me while writing but in the end lush diction won out.
  24. I'm surprised they haven't re-released the 17-70 f/4 in a WR version. Seems like they'd sell like hotcakes. It would be an ideal kit lens for the K-5. (Most of you know I'm quite fond of the 18-55, and I'm sure the WR version is great, but there's just something strange about bundling their least-expensive lens with their top tier camera. You don't see Nikon bundling their 18-55 with the D7000 or D300s...)
  25. Wow, this is nuts. Guess the fewer number of third party lenses made for K-mount means that Pentax has more
    control over the pricing metrics. The DA Ltd 35mm macro goes for $700 on Amazon, yet the Tokina version of the
    same lens in EOS mount (as I own both I'll confidently say that they are substantially the same) is selling there for
    $313. And I got mine a couple months ago mint for $220. Even better pricing applied to the Tokina versions of the
    DA* 50-135mm, & DA 12-24 f4 I picked up for my 7D as well.

    Wonder what the new 550mm tele is going to cost?

  26. Michael E., you took the thoughts right out of my head. I happened to be doing some browsing on Amazon today and decided to scope out various lenses just to see what the going rates are. I specifically looked for the Tokina 35/2.8 macro, and like you said, it is substantially less expensive than the Pentax version. I suppose we could get into a debate of how many of these Tokina sells for Canon vs. how many Pentax sells (obviously there are a lot more Canon owners in the world), and what the costs are for the superior design/build quality of the Pentax version, but I'm having a hard time believing that the Pentax version should cost more than twice as much as the Canon version. Especially since the Canon version has an internal focus motor.
    I also searched for the Tokina 16-50 and 50-135 and couldn't find them, but the last time I looked (maybe a year ago?) they were significantly less than their Pentax counterparts... but perhaps not as huge of a price difference as what we're seeing today. I remember thinking to myself that the Tokina 35/2.8 macro and 50-135 in Nikon mount were surprisingly good bargains, given their optical quality.
    Is Pentax's game to lure us in with well-spec'd affordable bodies and then rape us on lens prices? Seems like they're taking a page out of the inkjet printer manufacturers' playbooks.
    Also consider that during the past year or two, Tamron has chosen to ignore Pentax mount with most of their new lenses. This, too, is nudging me closer to Nikon, I'm afraid.
  27. R.T., the only aspect of the Pentax 35mm macro design/build being superior is the quickshift focusing and maybe the integral pullout hood. But the Tokina feels sturdier built (I'm looking at both together). The AF><MF is a push/pull ring at the end of the lens which I have not found to be a lot worse than quickshift, and the glass is recessed enough to be as effective as an integral pullout hood.
    The 16-50mm and the 50-135mm Tokina counterparts are now discontinued. In the Canon universe, most third party lenses have highly diminished status and related market value, regardless of their quality. The 50-135mm is fairly hard to find and sells for a song. It also is bombproof and has an excellent tripod mounting ring which Pentax should have included in the DA* model. The 16-50mm is even harder to find and unlike the sister lens, it is not highly regarded. The Tokina 12-24mm however, is still popular enough for Tokina to issue a revised second version. And of course the Tokina 11-16mm f2.8 really should be out in K-mount, it is very popular and damn good.
    My goal in purchasing these lenses was not the bargain, but to replicate my standard Pentax zoom lens setup (plus the 35mm macro) for event work with the 7D. Unlike Pentax, Canon has never really gotten the advantages of specifically designing a lens system for cropped-sensor bodies, so these Tokina lenses are advantageous. I often get questioned about them from other Canon 7D shooters who are trying to deal with 70-200mm zooms--outstanding optics but they are simply not quite wide enough and a bit too long (and shooting at f4 max not fast enough) for covering certain activities.
    I originally intended adding Canon for shooting sports and birds, but ended up getting more value by selling my Pentax standard zooms and "exchanging" them for Tokina versions quite profitably. It's a little strange, but it has worked out well.
    That all said, I have this simmering thought of selling off all my Pentax and Canon stuff for the new Nikon D800 and about four lenses.
  28. DA 70mm Limited, what was the previous price? It's now $699 at Adorama and B&H. Should have bought earlier this spring. Might have to consider a Rokinon 85mm now, which is fine since I've installed the Katzeye on my K-5.
  29. RT: I think you're right -- make it WR and improve focusing, the 17-70 probably would make more friends. Pentax has
    often used the 17-70 and 18-135 in K-7 and K-5 beauty shots...but seem to be reluctant to offer these $500-plus-ish
    lenses discounted in a camera kit. Nikon has found a way to make a fairly decent 18-105 sellable in kits (though these
    kits add more than $100-150 to the body-only price. At least Pentax usually bundles the WR version with the K-5/7. The
    WR versions at least offer a bit better feel & build.

    Unfortunately despite the highish price it appears that the 18-135 isn't as good (though smaller & WR) than the extended
    zoom ratio Nikkors. It's a bit like the Canon, sort of weak on the longer end.
  30. Well my friends this has cured my LBA!
  31. I love Pentax but this changes the rules of the game.
  32. Well, I just sprung for a K-5 and that's it for a loong while. I've got a 10-24 Tamron, 18-55 Pentax, 50-200 & 50-300 Pentax and 90mm Tamron macro. A fast long lens would be nice but heavy , long lenses are not appealing to me. I think that I've got enough for my needs and I'm certainly glad I bought them before the price increases. My next camera purchase will be a P&S although I hate holding a camera at arms length to compose and focus.
    This is a sad thread for us and Pentax.
  33. Howard: a few days ago Amazon was selling the Panasonic LX-5 for $320, which seemed like a great deal, and I was more than a little tempted. It's now back up to $360... but if you're in the market for a quality P&S, I'd suggest keeping an eye on it. The price may come back down.
    (I'd prefer an Olympus XZ-1, which surprisingly has a sharper lens than the LX-5's Leica-branded lens, but the XZ-1 is still selling for $490. If it ever comes down to $399 or less, that's the one I'd recommend over the LX-5.)
  34. R.T. - I'll keep an eye out, but I've got months to go before I pay off the K-5 and I want to take a class in the summer! I think I need to close my eyes to ads for a while :)
    Thanks for the info.
  35. I totally understand! :) I'd like to get another year out of my K100D before I replace it. I've had it for six years and I think I've gotten my money's worth, but hanging onto it for another year would give me more time to save up for a D7000... or perhaps a "K-02", which [crossing my fingers] would have a built-in EVF.
  36. Wow! I'd heard that they'd hiked the prices but had no idea it was that drastic. All of a sudden, my foolish lens-buying binge looks like genius--Clara's college fund has appreciated by 50% overnight! Fortunately, I'm pretty much out of the lens market but I really don't understand Ricoh's thinking on this.
  37. Is there any possibility that these lenses were actually being manufactured in the Tokina factory, and that Tokina decided to jack up what they were charging to Pentax -- forcing Pentax to pass that hike on to the consumer?
    If so, it would certainly behoove Pentax to reopen (or rebuild, if it's gone) their old lensmaking facility.
  38. Interesting thought, especially since tokina discontinued their 16-50 and 50-135.
  39. Because of tax considerations, companies generally dislike keeping a lot of expensive inventory on the books. If sales
    slow precipitously, we can expect some price drops in the next year or two.
  40. I think Ricoh is managing the perception of the Pentax brand upward from its former bargain status. The relative cost-
    to-market positioning of the two most recent camera bodies paved the way. Now the lenses are in Nikon/Canon

    It wouldn't surprise me if prices continue upward to be closer in perception to Leica. If you are selling relatively small
    volumes of product, then might as well project more exclusivity.

  41. Michael E. might have a great point about price and perception. The higher the price must mean the better the gear or the quality of the output. I have a feeling this may backfire. Shouldn't the pricing of the 645D escalate also? Hmmm....
  42. I think Ricoh is managing the perception of the Pentax brand upward​
    Oh great: "Pentax--the Camera of the 1%" ;~\ Well, if you're going to be a niche brand, might as well choose a cushy niche, I guess. Still, I'd think that raising prices has to be accompanied by other maneuvers (like, say, marketing?) as part of a general strategy (but perhaps it makes sense to re-set the price point in advance of that push.)
  43. Pentax marketing, even under Ricoh, continues to befuddle and boggle.
    Perhaps their internal strategy is to make the Pentax brand pay for itself. It's common in larger corporations that some brands are subsidized by other brands or additional income-generating activities. Perhaps Hoya was able to keep lens prices relatively low because they could provide glass components at cost.
    That was then, this is now.
  44. I'm with Dave- my excesses while the rebate programs were on a few years back now seem like I had an ESP glimpse into the future! I did have an "I'd better get it now" feeling.
    Indeed, some 3rd party offerings now seem even more attractive, yet Sigma has had substantial price increases over the past year or so.
  45. Well this is sad. My next camera might very well be another brand. :(
  46. I'm not suggesting anyone switch brands, far from it. No matter how outrageous I think some of these prices are. The grass isn't always greener with others and with some positives there are negatives as well. Things like even more expensive top end zooms, no in body SR (except Sony) etc.
    That being said, IMHO, Nikon is the most logical brand for a Pentaxian shooter to consider. The dual wheel design on both brands is the same and the learning curve is lower. Then you look at lenses like the 35mm f1.8 ($200), 50mm f1.8 ($129), 85mm f1.8 ($350-400) and so on. These are all very good primes and really cheap compared to any other brands. Plus there is lots of access to the 3rd party lenses.
    But I'd caution a move. These new prices might be a lot higher than we've been used to but they are still lower than many of the competitions offerings.
  47. I'm not planning a move, I've been with Pentax since about 1979. I'm just pissed that I didn't buy a couple of lenses before the price increase.
  48. I have a feeling Pentax just said we can't subsidize the US market anymore. Look at the USD value vs international currencies...it isn't pretty.
    No doubt some of it might have had to do with Hoya keeping glass prices down, but I think the rest of the world was paying these prices for some time. The US market isn't much bigger (is it bigger) than other countries with Pentax gear, so I am doubtful even if they lose some market share in the US it is going to matter much.
    I could see if the US was like 50% of Pentax total sales and they subsidized us for the market share but I think Europe has a higher market share of Pentax users, as does Asia.
  49. Justin, Europe's prices are higher because they have higher import tariffs and higher sales tax. Also, It wouldn't surprise me if B&H sold more Pentax cameras than most European countries, which would allow B&H to bulk purchase at a lower per unit price than many European countries could. Oh, and not only does Europe have a 16-18% sales tax, but buyers actually pay it, while most US buyers don't pay their 5-8% sales tax on internet orders.
    I don't think Europe has subsidised US buyers.
  50. What's interesting is that a lot of Pentax forums used to be full of threads waxing lyrical about Pentax lenses, extolling
    their virtues. Since this move, Pentax users the world over now seem to be falling over themselves pointing out the bad
    points about Pentax lenses. When your own brand adherents say your lenses are a bit rubbish then I think you've got a
    bit of a problem on your hands. Let's see what Ned writes about it.
  51. Johan: people certainly have plenty of unkind things to say about the DA* 16-50, but that's been the case for several years, and part of the reason why people have been so vocal about it is because it's the flagship pro zoom of the Pentax DSLR range. It should have been an excellent (or better than excellent) lens. Instead, it's a "love it or hate it" lens. If you were lucky enough to get an exceptionally good copy, you were in the "love it" camp; if you got a so-so or bad copy, you were in the "hate it" camp. (Hate is a strong word, but it's an expensive lens and people expected it to be great, not mediocre. Iffy customer service from Pentax didn't help, especially when [for example] the SDM motor died within a couple of weeks of the warranty running out, forcing the customer to spend big bucks to have it repaired.)
    As far as the other lenses are concerned, I think a lot of people are justifiably upset by the price increases, but I haven't seen (at least not in this thread) anyone suggesting that most (or all) Pentax lenses are rubbish. I think almost everyone here would agree that the Limited lenses are optically and mechanically quite spectacular. It's just upsetting to see some of them DOUBLE in price, especially since they were not inexpensive to begin with. (Most of them were way out of my price range even at their old prices, but now there's absolutely no way I'd ever be able to afford them.)
  52. Johan,
    I agree strongly with R.T. I see comparable complaining about Canon lenses in Canon forums. And besides, do you really think there is a high correlation between Internet forum whining and truth?--especially regarding camera equipment.
  53. Johan,
    The only lens I see people complaining about is the 16-50. There are naturally haters of any lens (the DA 21mm is one of those lenses that has a merry band of haters, but a few of us find is pretty awesome).
    So, all we are complaining about is that for $1400, we'd expect a Mark 2 version of the 16-50.
  54. That's fair enough... but what I'm seeing is that since this announcement, the general thrust of threads seems to be to
    pick holes and find issues with Pentax and the various bits that comprise the system rather than find and write about
    reasons to be positive about it - not really what you want your users to be doing. Sure, people complain on all sorts of
    forums, but I've personally never seen it to this extent on Pentax forums before. Not an entirely unexpected reaction to
    price rises, but still, can't be great when your own users call your brand a bit iffy.
  55. How can there be anything positive coming from this? There was only the price increase. Now if they had said:
    Today we're increasing prices on the existing line but also introducing a new series of lenses.
    50mm f2 at $149

    35mm f2 at $200
    DA*MKII 50-135mm
    85mm f2 at $350

    And so on. There's nothing with this change that is positive to the existing owners or new buyers.
  56. What Peter Zack said.
    And the reason why I don't consider this situation comparable to Nikon is because Nikon has been releasing new, great, affordable lenses at the same time they've been raising prices on some of their high-end lenses... and a few of their oldest and most useful lenses (50/1.8 and 28/2.8, for example) are still priced the same today as they were 7-10 years ago. So at least the beginners/students/retirees/poor folks aren't totally screwed in Nikon land. Meanwhile, Pentax doesn't even have a 50/1.8 (1.7) or 28/2.8 anymore... they discontinued them, forcing low-budget Pentax shooters to fend for themselves on the used market where prices continue to climb due to constantly shrinking availability.
  57. Well the reality is that if I am forced to pay higher lens costs, then I may just be in the market for a full frame camera that Pentax does not have. Don't get me wrong, I love Pentax, but increasing the price makes the trade off of little to no third party support, etc., just not worth it. Hopefully this will be a short term issue and Pentax will do something to turn this around. And no, I am not leaving Pentax anytime soon since I am two to three years away from another body purchase.
  58. That's fair enough... but what I'm seeing is that since this announcement, the general thrust of threads seems to be to pick holes and find issues with Pentax and the various bits that comprise the system rather than find and write about reasons to be positive about it - not really what you want your users to be doing.​
    Agreed, but to be fair, a lot of us were/are shooting Pentax because it was the poor mans Leica and a value brand all in one. And yet, we didn't feel like for our specific needs we were sacrificing much. Now it's still the poor mans Leica, but the value brand is gone. Yet, many things aren't fixed. For me, a higher mechanical shutter sync is a must, as well as a 1.4X TC and a 28-30mm prime lens. But these are things we all overlooked for the value aspect of the brand.
    This crying about prices is a lot like why I feel a full frame DSLR would have not done much for Pentax. Say they released a $2000 bargain FF body. It wouldn't attract Canikon shooters in droves, and it would get a lot of complaints for being more than the $1000-1500 we are used to for professional level camera bodies. And, no, just because it is the full frame everyone claims to have wanted, wouldn't have changed peoples minds. $2000 would have been too much.
    And I agree with Jemal. I think we also have been pretty happy with the supposed benefits (that I believe should still exist) of a smaller system in terms of lens cost. Don't forget, Pentax lenses are cropped sensor glass, not full frame glass. So our prices, even if all things are equal in terms of build and IQ, should be lower. Or go ahead and release a full frame camera with new lenses.
  59. There was only the price increase.​
    They could at least lengthen the warranty period on cameras and lenses to 3yrs.
  60. "Don't forget, Pentax lenses are cropped sensor glass, not full frame glass."
    Not all of them. To wit: DFA 50/2.8 Macro, DFA 100/2.8 Macro, FA 31 Ltd, FA 43 Ltd, FA 77 Ltd, possibly the DA* 200 and 300 (I've heard of people using these on film cameras), and possibly the DA 35/2.4... and let's face it, Pentax could easily bring back a lot of their old full frame glass if they wanted to. They just don't want to.
    And I agree with Dave: people who are buying Pentax lenses deserve more than a 1-year warranty. If you buy a Nikon 50/1.8 for $130, you get a 5-year warranty. If you buy a Pentax DA* 60-250 for $2000, you get a 1-year warranty. That's downright insulting.
  61. Hmmmm, don't know. I don't disagree with the thrust of the comments, that people think of Pentax as the 'quality' 'value'
    brand, heck I'm much the same. Even taking into account the price increases it's still a good brand for people who like to
    tinker and experiment. But I do admit that since I'm on an ultramacro binge at the moment there are all sorts of little ways
    in which Pentax is lacking, sadly =(.

    The FF point, not entirely sure about that myself. As in when the 645d was introduced at a whopping 10k the masses
    didn't rise up, and the funny thing is, by all accounts that model *hugely* outperformed the sales expectation of Japan hq.
    I personally suspect it depends what a FF would be compared to, the APSC bodies and their (lower) costs or the
    equivalent C/N bodies and their (higher) cost. And you know I think that just boils down to some sensible marketing
    (being a marketer myself).
  62. I now wonder how sales will do under these new prices? We may see some drop in those prices due to stagnation in sales.
    I have for years thought Pentax erred in not retaining their basic moderate-cost primes as Nikon has done, like their excellent FA 50mm f/1.7, FA 35mm f/2, and FA 28mm f/2.8 for example. Now there's only the DA 35mm f/2.4 on the cheap. The FA 50mm f/1.4 is still a decent value, though not the bargain it once was.
    There are, however, still many good lens choices at more moderate cost with a Pentax camera body. Some very fine Pentax lenses have so far stayed in the ballpark. There's the already-mentioned DA 16-45mm, which I have always considered a better lens optically and for dependability than the DA* 16-50mm, but minus one stop. The Sigma f/2.8 alternative is well-built, very highly rated, and now with silent AF at a bit over 1/2 the cost of the DA* 16-50mm. The also well-regarded Tamron standard-AF alternative is available at less than $500. The Pentax WR kit lenses have not increased and remain a very good value for what they are. The Pentax WR 18-135mm, which I have and like a lot, has not increased much. Was $500, dropped to $460, now at $530. Its price amongst the competition is justified in its extraordinary build qulity and fast, accurate, silent AF performance. I have found its optical performance in my copy to be surprisingly far better than some test reviews have indicated. This lens is compact, and stays within f/3.5-4.5 up to 70mm with very good quality performance.
    The excellent Pentax 12-24mm f/4 still remains at $700 so far. It is a better lens, and cheaper than the newest, slower Sigma 12-24mm! Then there is the well-regarded Sigma 10-20mm at around $500 or so. Tamron has some other fine offerings as well, and have not so far had the price hikes we've seen with many of Sigma's lenses. I wonder about the Tamron 70-200mm f/2.8, whether its dependability issues have been solved, and about its AF performance with the K-5. Javier reported good results with his K20D some time back. I have not checked the price lately of the Pentax 55-300mm, but for me this has been a lens of exceptional quality and range at a fair price. It keeps to f/4.5 up to 200mm. If the price will be raised, at least it should be upgraded to WR!
    There are numerous other lens choices at lower prices, so it is still possible to enjoy a fine Pentax camera body without having to break your bank!
  63. Here's the Deal (or part of it)... Pentax Q seems to have turned into a flop of sorts. Huge discounting going on overseas. Soon here..? Perhaps Ricoh's pockets aren't that deep, trying to make up for losses elsewhere. Anyone know about the financials of RICOH, the company..?
  64. "Here's the Deal (or part of it)... Pentax Q seems to have turned into a flop of sorts. Huge discounting going on overseas. Soon here..? Perhaps Ricoh's pockets aren't that deep, trying to make up for losses elsewhere. Anyone know about the financials of RICOH, the company..? "​
    I don't know that I would attribute discounting at this point as indication of flopping. They're probably just cutting prices on it as sales from less budget-conscious early adopters slow, and this was probably in the plan all along. This isn't so different from when the K-5 was introduced at ~$1600, right? I'm sure Pentax Q had large margins at its initial price level and may actually be more viable at reduced prices.
    Not to say that Q is necessarily a runaway success either -- but ultimately success is in the eye of the beholder. If Pentax/Ricoh makes money on the Q system, then they may be satisfied even if many photographers are not. Honestly I find certain aspects of the Q attractive, but initial price wasn't one of them. If they'd given it a sensor like Nikon 1 I'd guess it might have found more takers, and I might have been one of them -- I expect that Pentax could have done this at a similar price level with probably only slightly larger body & lenses -- if the sensor already existed. Even a 1/1.8" sensor would have helped their cause quite a bit.
    Anyway, I thought this thread was all about negative news about rising prices! The Q is being discounted...yay!
  65. Ned Bunnell, president of Pentax USA has weighed in on the situation with a post in his blog. In short: Prices haven't been raised, Pentax USA is simply forcing online retailers to stick to the MSRP so brick & mortar stores can have a chance to make a profit from selling Pentax gear. When Pentax show B&M stores it's possible, they'll start carrying Pentax again. This is part of Pentax's plan to return to stores, which they have been working on for a couple of years at least.
    Good news: Lens rebates will return in the near future.
    Thing about rebates...I purchased lenses with rebates in the past...but they only worked when purchased with a body, and it brought the prices further down from Good to Great. Now the rebates will bring prices down to still more expensive than before the price increase. I just don't see Pentax offering a $700 rebate for the DA* 16-50mm, for example. They will also have to offer lens rebates independently of camera purchases. I'm sure Andrew remembers if they've done this in the past or not.
    In any case, it's nice that Ned wrote this post, but he should've published it before the price increase, not after.
  66. I think Pentax has often had rebates for individual lenses in the past but you're right -- they've never had anything that
    would make the price anywhere near what the old street prices were. I seem to remember rebates like $50-150 in the
    past - which were nice when applied to the old street price level.
  67. I read Ned's response that was linked to above, but I'm just not feeling the love. First, distinguishing that the price increase is not a price increase, but a policing of the MSRP value is a diversionary point. It's like saying slavery didn't cause the (American) civil war. The existing consumer base has built their purchasing/upgrading habits and expectations around a pricing scheme that has been fairly stable over the past several years. Whether you want to call it policing or providing a direct path to your bottom line (i.e., "price increase") is beside the point - the fact is that Pentax made a decision that increased the pricing ecosystem of their products, in order to make more money. The dramatic price change is like dropping a meteor on prehistoric Earth; a portion of the existing dinosaur consumer base will die out and - if Pentax remains - a new customer base will evolve. It's purely a business call, which they're entitled to do, but I don't buy the "we never meant to hurt you" tone. The justification that it will "benefit the brand and many of you" is a pointless waste of words, because we can't see their books and have no way to judge for ourselves.
    I see this as them trying to position themselves to become more like Nikon and Canon. Maybe there are bigger ambitions like digital FF in the works, but it's not how I'd prefer to get there. What originally attracted me to Pentax was fantastic value, practical/ergonomic features (SR, compactness of size), and access to high quality. Cameras like the DS, K10D, K-x, and K-5, along with FA50, and Limited lenses all lived up to that. You could inject relatively affordable sums of money into the Pentax system and have excellent performance in your targeted area of interest. Whereas Canon and Nikon, you had to inject a lot more money to do the same, or you just ended up with less. With camera misfires (my opinion) like the K01 and the Q (which I consider a viral mutation on the noble concept of compactness), the recent price change maneuver feels more like another example of how increasingly out of touch the Pentax business minds have become.
  68. To follow up on my previous comment on the lens pricing issue (if not mystery)... Ricoh, the larger Co., has lost money over the last 12 months. Whether this has to do with their core business or Pentax not being profitable enough or not at all, we may not be able to learn... Meanwhile Pentax prices are starting to show weakness here and there. Market forces... Competition never sleeps. Currently, amongst Japanese camera makers, it's getting ferocious.

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