Pentax has announced two new high-performance interchangeable lenses for the smc Pentax-DA Star series.

In a flurry of lens announcements today, the Pentax -DA* 60-250mm F4ED[IF] SDM telephoto lens and PENTAX-DA*55mm F1.4 SDM medium-telephoto lens have been added to the Pentax range, offering a high zoom ratio and a large maximum aperture respectively.

Both lenses are the newest members of the DA Star series, particularly designed to deliver the top optical performance of all Pentax interchangeable lenses. Technologies present in the lenses include super-low dispersion optical elements, extra-low dispersion (ED) optical elements and Pentax-original lens coatings.

The lenses are also dust and water-resistant thanks to a set of special seals, and feature the Quick-Shift Focus system that allows you to switch between manual focus and autofocus to suit.

Individual features of the smc PENTAX-DA*60-250mm F4ED[IF] SDM lens include focal lengths from 92mm to 383mm in the 35mm format and a 4.2x zoom ratio which covers a broad telephoto range.

The F4 maximum aperture is able to be retained over the entire zoom range, and its hybrid AF system ensures smooth, quiet autofocus operation.

As for the Pentax-DA*55mm F1.4 SDM lens, when it is mounted on a Pentax DSLR, it offers a focal length of 80mm in the 35mm format. Mix this with its large F1.4 maximum aperture, it's a good choice for those photographers interested in portraiture.

It also features the SDM mechanism, making for a smooth, quiet autofocus that also keeps the lens compact, despite its large aperture.

The smc PENTAX-DA* 60-250mm F4ED[IF] SDM will retail at around £899.99, while pricing is to be confirmed on the smc PENTAX-DA