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Ricoh announces new $1,400 21mm F2.4 ED Limited DC WR lens, set for November release

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[Deep breath] Ricoh has announced the release of its new HD Pentax-D FA 21mm F2.4 ED Limited DC WR lens (Phew, that was a mouthful). This new lens is designed for Pentax K-mount full-frame DSLR camera systems and is the latest in the company’s ‘Limited’ lens series, which it says is set apart for the lens’ ‘distinctive image rendition and exterior design.’

The lens is constructed of 11 elements in eight groups, including four extra-low dispersion elements and one ‘Super’ extra-low dispersion elements, both of which aim ‘to minimize chromatic aberration and prevent color bleeding, not only in the main in-focus area, but also in the surrounding defocused areas.’ The lens also uses Pentax’s ‘High-Definition’ (HD) coating, which minimizes flaring and ghosting.

The lens will be available and black and silver colorways to match Ricoh’s Pentax DSLR cameras.

Ricoh says the new DC motor inside the lens—something it notes is ‘a first for the Limited D FA series’ lens—is quieter and smoother than the AF motors in its past lenses. The lens uses the Pentax KAF4 mount with an electromagnetic diaphragm that’s compatible with select Pentax DSLR camera systems.1

Other features include a weather-resistant design when paired with a Pentax weather-resistant DSLR camera, an eight-blade rounded aperture diaphragm, Pentax’s Quick-Shift Focus system and a minimum focusing distance of 18cm (7”).The lens measures 74mm (2.9”) in diameter, 89mm (3.5”) long and weighs roughly 416g (14.7oz).

The HD Pentax-D FA 21mm F2.4 ED Limited DC WR lens will be available next month (November 2021) at authorized Ricoh retailers for $1399.95.

Press release:

Ricoh Announces HD PENTAX-D FA 21mm F2.4ED Limited DC WR Lens

Designed for PENTAX K-mount full-frame digital SLR cameras, ultra- wide-angle lens is first D FA-series model developed for the new- generation PENTAX Limited series

PARSIPPANY, NJ, October 21, 2021 – Ricoh Imaging Americas Corporation today announced the HD PENTAX-D FA 21mm F2.4ED Limited DC WR lens. Designed for use with PENTAX K- mount, full-frame digital SLR cameras, this ultra-wide-angle, fixed-focal-length lens is the newest model in the PENTAX Limited series of lenses, which are highly acclaimed for their distinctive image rendition and exterior design. When used with PENTAX APS-C cameras, the new lens provides a focal length equivalent to 32mm in the 35mm format.

The HD PENTAX-D FA 21mm F2.4ED Limited DC WR lens is the first D FA-series lens in the PENTAX Limited lineup to optimize the visual characteristics of digital images, with a goal of enabling a level of imaging performance that can’t be measured in numerical values, alone. The new lens captures the prevailing ambience and true-to-life sense of depth of the scene and is designed to make photography enjoyable for its users — essential elements of the PENTAX Limited series. The 21mm ultra-wide-angle focal length, not previously available in the FA Limited series and ideal for landscape photography, adds a new perspective of visual expression to the Limited series.

The new lens features durable, weather-resistant construction, enabling its use in challenging conditions, whether it’s a misty waterfront location or a sudden rainstorm. When paired with a PENTAX weather-resistant digital SLR camera body, the lens becomes part of a highly dependable, airtight digital imaging system that performs superbly in a broad range of environments.

Pricing and Availability

The lens will be available in November at http://www.us.ricoh-imaging.com/ as well as at Ricoh Imaging-authorized retail outlets. Manufacturer’s suggested retail price is $1399.95.

Main features of the HD PENTAX-D FA 21mm F2.4ED Limited DC WR

1. Exclusive Limited-series quality with optimized image rendition

True to the Limited series design concept, this lens was developed to provide a distinctive visual expression. Lens design entailed conducting a series of image quality assessments using a vast number of captured images, and then these results were fed back into the design process, along with various numerical evaluations using precision measurement tools.

When used for distant subjects such as landscapes, the lens assures solid, uniform image rendition across the image field. By further closing the aperture down, it delivers sharp, clear, high-resolution images, even at the edges. Its optical characteristics change for close-range photography. At open aperture, it provides a mild bokeh (defocused) effect in the background while capturing the main subject in sharp, crisp focus. This enables the subject to stand out against a defocused background, with the exaggerated perspective typical of ultra-wide-angle lenses. At a minimum focusing distance of seven inches (18 centimeters), it can create a variety of visual expressions, depending on the subject being captured.

To achieve an attractive exterior design, the lens barrel, hood and cap have been meticulously machined from high-grade aluminum. In every way, this lens is an exceptional imaging tool that will bring greater joy and inspiration to photography.

2. Exceptional optics incorporating the latest optical technologies

The lens optics incorporate a total of five glass elements: four ED (Extra-low Dispersion) glass elements—including one ED aspherical lens—and one Super ED (Extra-low Dispersion) glass optical element to minimize chromatic aberration and prevent color bleeding, not only in the main in-focus area, but also in the surrounding defocused areas. It also features a large-aperture negative meniscus optical element, a biconvex aspherical glass-mold optical element and a high- refraction glass optical element in the first lens group; this design reduces the lens’s overall size despite the ultra-wide-angle design, while delivering outstanding imaging performance for sharp, crisp images without fuzziness, even in the peripheral areas.

The lens also features PENTAX-original High-Definition (HD) Coating. Compared with conventional multi-layer coatings, this high-grade, multi-layer coating reduces the average reflectance in the visible spectrum to less than 50 percent, effectively minimizing flare and ghost images even in demanding lighting conditions such as backlighting.

3. Internal lens motor AF

The lens features a DC motor inside the lens barrel—a first for the Limited D FA Series—to assure smooth, quiet, high-precision, high-speed autofocus operation. This focusing mechanism provides a quieter drive sound and smoother operation than traditional body autofocus.

4. Electromagnetic diaphragm mechanism for high-precision exposure control

This lens incorporates the KAF4 mount, with an electromagnetic diaphragm mechanism to assure high-precision exposure control when used in combination with compatible digital SLR cameras. It assures smooth, worry-free video shooting in locations prone to dramatic brightness changes, such as a stage with rapidly changing lighting conditions, or a forest with filtered sunlight.

Electromagnetic diaphragm control is available in combination with the PENTAX K-3 Mark III, PENTAX K-3 II, PENTAX K-3, PENTAX KP, PENTAX K-70, PENTAX K-50, PENTAX K-S2, PENTAX K-S1, PENTAX K-1 Mark II and PENTAX K-1 camera bodies. Ricoh advises users to upgrade the camera’s firmware to the latest version to properly operate the electromagnetic diaphragm mechanism.

5. Durable, weather-resistant construction

The lens features durable, weather-resistant construction, enabling its use in challenging conditions, such as at a waterfront location or in a sudden rainstorm. When paired with a PENTAX weather-resistant digital SLR camera body, the lens becomes part of a highly dependable, airtight digital imaging system that performs superbly even in the most demanding shooting locations.

6. Other features

• SP (Super Protect) coating is applied to the front surface of each lens to repel dust and stains.

• Black lens models are marked with a serial number starting with 0000001; silver models start with 1000001

• A built-in motor drives the AF mechanism for smooth, quiet autofocus operation

• An eight-blade rounded diaphragm produces beautiful light beams with point light sources, while creating a natural, beautiful bokeh (defocus) effect at open and larger apertures

• QFS/A (Quick-Shift Focus System) instantly shifts to the manual-focus mode without requiring focus-mode switching operations after the subject has been captured in focus by the camera’s

autofocus system


1The electromagnetic diaphragm control is available in combination with the PENTAX K-3 Mark III, PENTAX K-3 II, PENTAX K-3, PENTAX KP, PENTAX K-70, PENTAX K-50, PENTAX K-S2, PENTAX K-S1, PENTAX K-1 Mark II and PENTAX K-1 camera bodies.


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