Pentax Reportedly Working on Revamped FA Lenses, 645D Successor; Still No Full-Frame DSLR in Sight

Back in August, Pentax, now owned by Ricoh, announced a re-issue of its DA Limited lenses, which are now labelled HD and come with new coatings for better image quality and rounded aperture blades for nicer bokeh. Now RiceHigh’s Pentax Blog reports that Ricoh is planning to also revamp the Pentax FA Limited lenses, which consist of the 31mm f1.8, 43mm f1.9 and 77mm f1.8. According to a discussion thread on the Chinese Xitek forum, a Ricoh official stated that the FA Limited lenses will soon receive the same HD coatings plus a number of optical tweaks to their barrels.

In another recent article, RiceHigh reports about an interview with the Chief Sales and Marketing Manager of Ricoh Imaging, published in issue 1/2014 of the Japanese Impress photo magazine. In that interview, it’s allegedly being hinted that a replacement for the 645D digital medium format camera might be on its way, and that it may come with a full-frame 6×4.5 sensor. The current Pentax 645D uses a cropped sensor.

The same Ricoh official is also reported to have claimed in an interview with a Hong Kong magazine that there will likely be no full-frame Pentax DSLR coming, at least not before the 645D successor. As a reason for that, he mentions that APS-C models make up about 80-90% of the total DSLR market share, and that there are already enough choices for the remaining 10-20% of the market. That’s really a pity, because we know for a fact that many Pentax fans would love to be able to use their legacy K-mount glass on a 35mm full-frame system. But there’s still the Sony A7 and A7R for that.

As always, these are early reports and to be taken with a grain of salt. It’s very likely that we’ll see the revamped FA Limited lenses for CP+ in 2014, but we wouldn’t speculate on when a possible 645D successor might see the light of day, and whether or not there’ll ever be a 35mm full-frame Pentax DSLR. Though we surely wouldn’t mind one.