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SMC Pentax-A 28mm F2.8

Reviews Views Date of last review
55 263,160 Thu September 5, 2019
Recommended By Average Price Average User Rating
96% of reviewers $84.29 8.42
SMC Pentax-A 28mm F2.8

SMC Pentax-A 28mm F2.8
SMC Pentax-A 28mm F2.8

This lens is similar to the second version of the smc Pentax-M 28mm F2.8 lens.

SMC Pentax-A 28mm F2.8
©, sharable with attribution
Image Format
Full-frame / 35mm film
Lens Mount
Pentax K
Aperture Ring
Yes (A setting)
Automatic, 5 blades
7 elements, 7 groups
Mount Variant
Check camera compatibility
Max. Aperture
Min. Aperture
Min. Focus
30 cm
Max. Magnification
Filter Size
49 mm
Internal Focus
Field of View (Diag. / Horiz.)

APS-C: 55 ° / 46 °
Full frame: 75 ° / 65 °
PH-S49 (28/35mm)
Hard case HA-90B
Lens Cap
Plastic clip-on
Weather Sealing
Other Features
Diam x Length
63 x 36.5 mm
170 g
Production Years
1984 to 1988
Engraved Name
smc PENTAX-A 1:2.8 28mm
Product Code
User reviews
Lens hood was not included with lens
Manual FocusAperture RingAutomatic ApertureFull-Frame SupportDiscontinued
Price History:

Add Review of SMC Pentax-A 28mm F2.8
Sort Reviews by: Date | Author | Rating | Recommendation | Likes (Descending) Showing Reviews 1-15 of 55
Forum Member

Registered: September, 2013
Posts: 62
Lens Review Date: December 26, 2013 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $50.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: solid body, clear image. just good lens
Cons: not detected
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: LX, K-30   

wide angle at FF, slightly wide (EFL 42mm) at crop (K-30)
has an A-setting of aperture dial ring, so fully compatible with DSLR.

using it for indoor or open-space outdoor.

overall not complaints. images has very good quality, sharpness and nice-enough bokeh.
i think from K-KA manual 28mm lens it is one of the best.

using it often, with no doubt.
Inactive Account

Registered: September, 2011
Posts: 6

2 users found this helpful
Lens Review Date: April 17, 2012 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $170.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: superb sharpness, contrast, color rendition
Cons: no longer manufactured
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 9    Value: 10    Camera Used: K-5   

Same optics as M28 ver.2 and F 28. Very sharp lens with excellent contrast, no distortions.

This lens produce sharper images than my short F2.8 zoom.
The short 17-50mm'ish F2.8 zooms also pale in comparison when it comes to contrast.
It works well on new DSLRs like K-5 to take advantage of the added dynamic range ability of the new sensors to achieve images rich in color with great details.
Senior Member

Registered: February, 2011
Posts: 118

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: October 22, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $185.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: contrasty, sharp wide open
Cons: none
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 10    Value: 9   

Very sharp lens, one of the sharpest Pentax 28mm.
Same optical formula as late-model M28 and auto-focus F28.

Some reviews rate this sharper than the early M28, some vice versa.
I find it to be sharper wide open than the early-model M28. Some of the differences reported may have been just a matter of sample variations.

It was hard to find a mint copy for sure.
This is to be one of the most-used work-house lens, right next to M50 1.7.

Produces very contrasty pictures even wide open, this is more visible on digital than film.
New Member

Registered: December, 2009
Location: Egham, Surrey
Posts: 1

4 users found this helpful
Lens Review Date: December 2, 2009 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $100.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Crispy sharp, good contrast, detail, color redition, no distortion

The picture quality from this lens is far more than the price I paid. Highly recommended to get it if you want to have 28mm. lens.

New Member

Registered: June, 2017
Posts: 2
Lens Review Date: June 2, 2017 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $95.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: build quality,sharp
Cons: NON
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 10    Value: 9    Camera Used: K3-2   

I love it!
I think I can shoot a wonderful sight.
Site Supporter

Registered: February, 2017
Posts: 615
Lens Review Date: May 27, 2017 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: N/A | Rating: 9 

Pros: ideal focal length on apsc, build quality, handling
Cons: IQ needs assistance
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: k3   

I am reviewing this lens for use on APSC cameras, as I do not like the 28mm focal length on film and by default FF digital so have not used it on film. For film I much prefer something wider like a 24mm or even 20mm, or something narrower like 35mm.
I have used the 28mm on my K3 now for 18 months, and for a long time I found the images ok but not exceptional. They certainly lacked something special when compared to the DA 35mm f2.4, not sure what. I was shooting JPEGs. Recently however, I have switched to shooting RAW and processing images in camera and by doing so I have been getting the results I want. Its not super sharp, but is IMO acceptably so. I recommend users shoot RAW with this lens and unless you are a pixel peeper, no disappointment should follow.
The lens itself is a typically well made manual focus model from the 80's. Much better construction than most modern lenses. I paid Ģ50 for mine and that represents excellent value for money. The A lock setting means that it functions brilliantly with Pentax DSLRs. I love the field of view on APSC (42mm equivalent). It balances nicely on my K3. With all these factors in consideration I think it makes a perfect walk around lens.The only thing it lacks is auto focus but that does not bother me.
As these lenses are very reasonably priced I can't think of a good reason for not having one. Recommended!
Forum Member

Registered: February, 2014
Location: Warsaw
Posts: 76

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: June 24, 2014 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $80.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Good image quality, build quality, A - setting, Price to FOV ratio :)
Cons: Not super sharp
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 9    Value: 10    Camera Used: K-500   

Quite soft wide open, starts to be sharp after f3.5, very sharp after f5.0.
Unsurprisingly sharper then kit lens but not as sharp as expected from prime lens, don’t get me wrong it is sharp but unfortunately not as sharp as Pentax A 50/1.7.
Thanks to A setting easy to use.
As for its price it is a great lens, sharp and reasonably fast. Very useful in indoors shooting when 50mm is too long.
For less than 80$ it is worth buying.


Registered: March, 2014
Location: Dallas, TX
Posts: 890
Lens Review Date: June 19, 2014 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $85.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Compact. Pretty Sharp. Relatively fast. A setting
Cons: Focus ring is a tiny bit loose feeling
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 9    Value: 9    Camera Used: K500   

Needed a little bit wider FOV than my 35 or 50 could give me and I didn't want to reach for my DA 18-55 zoom. This lens certainly fits the bill. Over-all very nice contrast and good sharpness across almost all stops. Provides a nice and aesthetic softness but it is not at the expense of color, contrast or sharpness. Contradictory, I know, but it is something you have to see to understand. It's a good thing. Color rendition is like most Pentax -- excellent. The Focus ring seems a tiny bit loosey/goosey but it still instills the feeling of a well built lens. There are some pretty good 28/2.8 lenses out there from Sigma and Vivitar, etc.; however, the Pentax-A 28/2.8 should be on your list if you are looking for a a quality lens to give you a bit more FOV.

IMGP0726 by Ripper2860, on Flickr
New Member

Registered: February, 2012
Posts: 2

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: January 25, 2014 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $82.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: IQ, size, built quality
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: K5   

A great standard lens for APS-C – if you can cope without autofocus.
New Member

Registered: September, 2013
Posts: 4
Lens Review Date: September 27, 2013 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $36.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Nice built , nice sharpness, very cheap in my country
Cons: Not yet fou d
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 9    Value: 10    Camera Used: K5   

Just bought and surely this lens is good
Mine is not really smooth in the body, looks like it wasnt kept in the right place before.. But still nothing is wrong with the shot taken

I think i am in love in this lense
Junior Member

Registered: December, 2012
Location: Cirebon
Posts: 29
Lens Review Date: August 30, 2013 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $55.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Lightweight, Good enough build, Sharpness
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 7    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: K-01   

  • Small and lightweight.
  • Natural color rendering.
  • Sharp enough at wide open but TOO SHARP for portrait.
  • Not yet
New Member

Registered: July, 2013
Posts: 1
Lens Review Date: July 23, 2013 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $125.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Small, sharp, easy focus, controlled flare
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 10    Value: 9    Camera Used: Pentax 35mm   

I really liked this lens - lost it on a mountainside in the Canadian Rockies in the late '80s. As I recall, it handled really well, easy to focus, good sharpness. Good scenic lens in the film era. It seemed to handle flare really well - winter skiing shots pointed into the sun produced nice results. Very disappointed when I lost it - should have bought another one.

The only real drawback I remember is that f2.8 was slow for indoor use, and I ended up using my 50mm 1.7 more often for that. Oh, the limitations of film....
Junior Member

Registered: August, 2012
Posts: 33
Lens Review Date: March 9, 2013 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $100.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Sharpness, A-mode, colours, resolution, "normal lens" on APS-C
Cons: Slightly wobbly barrell compared to M-version
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 7    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: Pentax K-30   

My favourite lens by far! So versatile, so sharp and very enjoyable to use, and all of this for peanuts (60-100 USD)! I've also owned the 28mm f3.5 M-version which is known for it's crazy colours and, in comparison, this A-version is miles sharper and has much better resolution, especially at infinity and far away objects.

I have no problem using this wide open, but I usually shoot between f4 and 5.6. Honestly, I haven't seen much difference in corner sharpness but then again I don't really pixel peep. Focusing with lens is extremely easy and on bright sunny day you can always just place it to f8 and snap away ("f8 and be there"). But even wide open it's very easy to spot the focus point.

Some claim this lens is boring to which I must retort that it's hardly the lens' fault if your pictures turn out boring.
It has some aberrations and fringing when shot against high-contrast light, but this is easily fixed with PS or LR (literally one button) so it doesn't really bother me, but film users should probably take note.

I would rate this a strong 9. It's not a ten - no lens is perfect - but it is my favourite and the one I'd recommend to every Pentaxian, especially DSLR users looking for a good, cheap "normal lens" (43mm FF equivalent).

Below a couple of shots I have taken with this lens:
Senior Member

Registered: July, 2011
Location: Mississippi
Posts: 282

3 users found this helpful
Lens Review Date: October 28, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $70.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: perfect "normal" focal length on APS-c DSLR's, cheap compared to the AF version and with better optics
Cons: manual focus (if you think AF is the bomb)
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 7    Handling: 10    Value: 10   

This lens has quickly become my favorite and most used.........I've learned to work around alot of the manual focus problems, by simply by using the old stand bye of hyperfocal.........with this method, and simply knowing my in-focus range, found it's actually quicker to shoot than most any AF lens. Seems to be the perfect "normal" focal length for APS-c camera's, equaling the FOV on 35mm format and their 50mm lenses. Making this lens/camera combo very easy to use and compose with. Only downside I can really find is that with just a 5blade shutter, it can produce some weird booka and sunstars when stopped down or shooting at night. Don't worry with the f2.8 max aperture, this lens is a bit faster than advertised, and very sharp from the get-go and extremely so from about f4.5-f11. It's very bright for an f2.8 also, as I've been able to produce amazing pics handheld at night even without the highly regarded hi-ISO capabilities of the KX. Couple samples below of pics taken with this lens. 1st, a landscape using a long exposure with tripod, and 2nd a handheld night scene.

New Member

Registered: November, 2010
Posts: 16

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: September 12, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: N/A | Rating: 9 

Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 10    Value: 10   

I bought this lens in a small shop in Tokyo for 9000 yen. I bought because I was curious. I dinīt own any A lens, and I wanted a manual 28mm prime for street photography and general purpose because I like the 42mm perspective on APSC. I wanted it manual for using it with hyperfocals and focusing zones. My main lens is the DA 35 Limited, which is no very practical for that purpose. I didnīt find many information about this lens, so I decided to risk and just try what it offers. But, at first, I didnīt expect a lot from it... But it surprised me gratefully, and surprises every day. Itīs very sharp at any apertures, specially at f8, have very little aberrations (I didnīt find them significant), very slight distortion (I canīt appreciate) and itīs very compact, light and beautiful. The construction is very good, made almost os metal, the focus ring is surprisingly smooth, I find it very close to a Takumarīs one. The aperture ring is also nice, but I use it on A mode, so this is no relevant for me. Maybe it suffers from some flare, but I didnīt notice, maybe because when the light is too strong I use a metal hood. In normal conditions whiteout hood I downīt notice flare yet. I find the bokeh and sharpness is really pleasant at full aperture, but maybe when you stop it down the bokeh can be harsh because of the 5 aperture blades. I donīt know, because I donīt want it for its bokeh or close-up capabilities. I think this lens takes some colors without saturation, more "realistic", but I think this is not necessary bad, and you can always add saturation on your PC.

I think itīs a very nice lens, very beautiful, with nice design, compact, lightweight, and very useful and versatile. Itīs manual focus, but in my case this was irrelevant. Itīs very sharp and it gives a very nice image quality. It fits very well on my K-5 and I love it. I highly recommend it, because itīs very good and very cheap.
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