Pentax has launched a new, high performance smc PENTAX-DA * (DA Star), interchangeable, zoom lens range. The PENTAX-DA * 16-50mm and smc PENTAX-DA * 50-135mm are the first models in the range and boast a supersonic motor to deliver smoother, quieter auto-focusing operation.

The lenses that will be available from retailers in May have been designed exclusively for use with Pentax's digital SLR cameras.

The PENTAX-DA * range also features a tightly sealed, weather and dust-resistant construction to enhance durability and when used with the Pentax K10D, create a completely weather resistant system that can be used in the most challenging of environments.

"Our engineers are rightly proud of their achievements with these new DA* lenses. Pentax has built an enviable reputation with its * (star) lenses, and these new additions to the range are eagerly anticipated by photo enthusiasts and professionals. Each one is a testament to Pentax' continuous pursuit of the ultimate image quality in digital photography", said Phil Williams, Divisional Head, Imaging Systems at Pentax.

Major Features of the smc PENTAX-DA « 16-50mm F2.8ED AL[IF]SDM Lens
When mounted on a PENTAX digital SLR camera body, this 3.1x zoom lens covers angles of view from 24.5mm to 76.5mm (in 35mm format). This versatile ultra-wide to medium-telephoto coverage, can be used as a handy standard zoom lens in a wide variety of applications, including landscape, snapshot and portrait.

Incorporating two ED (extra-low dispersion) elements and three aspherical elements, this versatile zoom lens effectively compensates for chromatic and spherical aberrations.

Major Features of the smc PENTAX-DA « 50-135mm F2.8ED [IF]SDM Lens
When mounted on a PENTAX digital SLR camera body, this 2.7x zoom lens covers angles of view from 76.5mm to 207mm (in 35mm format). Coupled with a large maximum aperture of F2.8, it is a perfect telephoto zoom lens for applications such as portraiture, featuring beautifully constructed, out-of-focus backgrounds, and sports photography freezing split-second action at high shutter speeds.

Incorporating three ED (extra-low dispersion) elements, this telephoto zoom lens effectively minimises the chromatic aberrations which would be particularly detrimental to image-forming performance.

This telephoto zoom lens is treated with PENTAX-original ghostless coating to effectively minimise internal reflections in the optical elements and greatly improve contrast and clarity with backlit subjects.

Specifications

smc PENTAX-DA « 16-50mm F2.8EDAL[IF]SDM
Lens mount: PENTAX KAF2 mount
Lens construction: 15 elements in 12 groups
Angle of view: 83-31.5°( when used with PENTAX Digital SLR camera body)
Aperture control: Automatic
Minimum aperture: F22
Number of diaphragm blades: 9
Metering system: TTL open-aperture metering
Minimum focusing distance: 0.3 m
Filter size: 77mm
Maximum magnification: 0.21x
Dimensions(diameter x length): 84mm x 98.5mm (3.3 inches x 3.9 inches)
Weight 565g ( 19.9 oz) without hood /600g ( 21.2 oz) with hood

smc PENTAX-DA « 50-135mm F2.8ED [IF]SDM.
Lens mount: PENTAX KAF2 mount
Lens construction: 18 elements in 14 groups
Angle of view: 31.5-11.9°( when used with PENTAX Digital SLR camera body)
Aperture control: Automatic
Minimum aperture: F22
Number of diaphragm blades:9
Metering system: TTL open-aperture metering
Minimum focusing distance: 1.0 m
Filter size: 67mm
Maximum magnification: 0.17x
Dimensions(diameter x Length): 76.5mm x 136mm(3.0 inches x 5.4 inches)
Weight 685g ( 24.2 oz) without hood / 765g ( 27.0 oz) with hood