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SMC Pentax-D FA 100mm F2.8 Macro WR Review RSS Feed

SMC Pentax-D FA 100mm F2.8 Macro WR

Sharpness 
 9.8
Aberrations 
 9.1
Bokeh 
 9.5
Autofocus 
 7.7
Handling 
 9.4
Value 
 9.2
Reviews Views Date of last review
106 460,183 Sat September 2, 2023
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Recommended By Average Price Average User Rating
99% of reviewers $560.33 9.55
SMC Pentax-D FA 100mm F2.8 Macro WR

SMC Pentax-D FA 100mm F2.8 Macro WR
supersize
SMC Pentax-D FA 100mm F2.8 Macro WR
supersize

Description:
A weather-sealed version of the DFA 100mm f/2.8 macro lens. Maximum magnification is 1:1. The image circle of the lens covers the full 35mm film format as did its predecessor. Cosmetics have changed and build quality has been improved - the lens now has an aluminum barrel. This new lens does not have an aperture ring so it is not suitable for use on the older film cameras which do not allow for setting the aperture from the camera body, such as the LX, MX, ME, ME Super, K1000 etc.

The aperture has rounded blades which should result in a pleasing and smooth rendering of out-of-focus areas (aka bokeh).

Like all weather-sealed lenses, the D FA 100mm Macro has a rubber seal around the lens mount, which can be seen in the photo (colored red). The front element is SP (Super Protect) coated.

SMC Pentax-D FA 100mm F2.8 Macro WR
© www.pentaxforums.com, sharable with attribution
Image Format
Full-frame / 35mm film
Lens Mount
Pentax K
Aperture Ring
No
Diaphragm
Automatic, 8 blades (rounded)
Optics
9 elements, 8 groups
Mount Variant
KAF
Check camera compatibility
Max. Aperture
F2.8
Min. Aperture
F32
Focusing
AF (screwdrive)
Quick-shift
Yes
Min. Focus
30 cm
Max. Magnification
1x
Filter Size
49 mm
Internal Focus
No
Field of View (Diag. / Horiz.)

APS-C: 16 ° / 14 °
Full frame: 24 ° / 20 °
Hood
PH-RBE 49mm
Case
S80-120
Lens Cap
O-LC49
Coating
SMC,SP
Weather Sealing
Yes (WR)
Other Features
Metal Build
Diam x Length
65 x 80.5 mm (2.6 x 3.2 in.)
Weight
340 g (12 oz.)
w/ Hood: +38g
Production Years
2009 to 2022
Pricing
$449 USD current price
$376 USD at launch
Engraved Name
smc PENTAX-D FA MACRO 1:2.8 100mm WR
Product Code
21910
Reviews
User reviews
In-depth review

Features:
Screwdrive AutofocusQuick ShiftWeather SealedAutomatic ApertureFull-Frame SupportDiscontinued
Purchase: Buy the SMC Pentax-D FA 100mm F2.8 Macro WR
In-Depth Review: Read our SMC Pentax-D FA 100mm F2.8 Macro WR in-depth review!
Sample Photos: View Sample Photos
Price History:



Add Review of SMC Pentax-D FA 100mm F2.8 Macro WR Buy the SMC Pentax-D FA 100mm F2.8 Macro WR
Author:
Sort Reviews by: Date | Author | Rating | Recommendation | Likes (Descending) Showing Reviews 31-45 of 106
Veteran Member

Registered: July, 2007
Location: North West UK
Posts: 390

2 users found this helpful
Review Date: July 18, 2017 Recommended | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Image Quality, Small and lightweight, build
Cons: Slight CA, no aperture ring and focus limiter
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 10    Autofocus: 9    Handling: 10    Value: 10    New or Used: New    Camera Used: K-1   

This is a must have lens for Macro on Pentax, as overall it is excellent.
The sharpness is superb as is the overall image quality.
It is small, well built, and quite light.

Only downsides are a little CA in extremis, which can be cleared up in post, the lack of a focus limiter and an aperture ring, meaning some film bodies struggle to be used with it (MZ-5n a case in point), But then again certain film bodies that can control the aperture in-body can happily use it.

So far I have only used it on the K-1, and it is a great partnership. Now to use it on film and the K-3

Really recommend.
   
Junior Member

Registered: January, 2013
Location: Texas
Posts: 32

2 users found this helpful
Review Date: April 28, 2017 Recommended | Price: $550.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Image Quality, Built quality
Cons: No aperture ring
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 9    Autofocus: 9    Handling: 10    Value: 10    New or Used: New    Camera Used: Pentax K30, K70   

This lens is wonderful. Compared to the older D-DA 'non-WR', the built quality is in a totally different league.
Higher quality plastic, optical elements in metal barrel, tight focusing ring, weatherproof.
For a reason I don't know, the sharpness is very, very good but slightly inferior to the older version. Probably due to manufacturing variability.
It is Very Good at full aperture, but only 'Good' in the corners. Excellent-Very Good at f/4.0, Excellent everywhere above.
Nice to use thanks to its light weight, 1:1 magnification capability and Quickshift.
   
Veteran Member

Registered: June, 2007
Location: SE Idaho - Rocky Mtns
Posts: 580

1 user found this helpful
Review Date: April 4, 2017 Recommended | Price: $399.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Resolution Focal Length Macro
Cons: Focusing Motor
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 10    Autofocus: 7    Handling: 9    Value: 10    New or Used: New    Camera Used: Pentax K-3 II   



Love this lens! For portrait work I can generally lock the focus and shoot at F/5.6 or F/8.0 from about 8' for a head shot.

Edit: Works well at 1:1 macro too. Acrylic yarn

   
New Member

Registered: December, 2015
Location: KAWASAKI
Posts: 2
Review Date: February 7, 2017 Recommended | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: excellent sharpness, build quality, look cool
Cons: auto focus so slowly, but exactly
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 10    Autofocus: 6    Handling: 9    Value: 9    New or Used: New    Camera Used: K-1   

It is really an excellent lens.


..

   
Senior Member

Registered: July, 2014
Location: Bulgaria
Posts: 149

4 users found this helpful
Review Date: January 13, 2017 Recommended | Rating: 10 

 
Pros:
Cons:
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 10    Autofocus: 5    Handling: 10    Value: 8    New or Used: Used    Camera Used: K-30   

Sharp, sharp, sharp, sharp!!! It is VERY sharp! I got my D-FA 100mm WR second hand. It is an expensive lens for our standards in Bulgaria, but all the money are worth it! Everything about that lens is beyond this world! Image quality, sharpness, build quality, rigidity, handling... it deserves 10000 stars!

Well the auto-focus is... noisy and you can literally feel when the lens is focusing. Sometime it has to go from end to end to focus, but... as a macro lens it is mainly used with manual focus, which is excellent, even with big winter gloves.

I love it and i have fun shooting with it! That's all that matters in the end of the day!

Here are some shots with K-30 and D-FA 100mm WR:













   
Pentaxian

Registered: May, 2016
Posts: 3,725

5 users found this helpful
Review Date: September 23, 2016 Recommended | Price: $400.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: very good quality
Cons: sometimes expensive
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 10    Autofocus: 9    Handling: 10    Value: 10    New or Used: New    Camera Used: K-3II   

I've had this lens for a few months. Initially I was mostly using it for macro, at which it excels (surprise! Recently I've also shot sports and concerts with this lens. And it's pretty good at that too! It's not able to track over long movements towards/away from the camera, but I'd say it's more than usable within its limitations.

fwiw: the first lens I received had a problem, the focusing ring was not turning smoothly, and it's been exchanged promptly; this happens, no big deal.
   
New Member

Registered: April, 2015
Location: Perth, Western Australia
Posts: 19

3 users found this helpful
Review Date: September 18, 2016 Recommended | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Sharpness, bokeh, build, WR, Auto focus
Cons: None
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 10    Autofocus: 9    Handling: 10    Value: 10    New or Used: New    Camera Used: K-S2   

I bought this lens 12 months ago and to be honest it took me a while to learn how to use it properly. Its sharper than sharp and a joy to use. I started taking macro shots of the bees that hang around my Lavender bushes. I then started using it as a walk around lens. I can't recommend this enough and it will sit on my new K1 most of the time..
   
Senior Member

Registered: June, 2016
Location: Paris
Posts: 124

4 users found this helpful
Review Date: June 30, 2016 Recommended | Price: $650.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: size, lightweight, built
Cons: none
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 10    Autofocus: 10    Handling: 10    Value: 10    New or Used: New    Camera Used: K-1   

Using this lens in 2 major situations: street portrait when WR needed, and jewelry packshots.
For portrait, love the bokeh. And sharpness. And blazing fast AF. An microcontrasts. everything . It delivers great shots in harsh climate conditions.
For jewelry packshots, it's amazing how it handles well the reflections and abberations, while working with glass type objects, differents metals aso. Allmost no PP needed.
And it's also a great lens all sharp at infinity focus.

I consider this lens to be overall at least equal to the limiteds and FA* , and i'm happy Pentax has a super price tag for it, given the amazing handling and performance.
   
Senior Member

Registered: February, 2011
Location: Brno
Posts: 295
Review Date: May 11, 2016 Recommended | Price: $540.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Sharp, build quality, WR
Cons: No focus limiter, no aperture ring, bit of CA
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 9    Autofocus: 6    Handling: 8    Value: 8    New or Used: Used    Camera Used: MZ-10, K20D, K5, K3   

Very good macro lens. There are some aberrations visible when aperture is wide open, but both resolution and aberrations improve when stopped down a bit to F4+. Bokeh is pleasing. Lens is usable as short telephoto portrait lens too. The best Fstop range to achieve maximum output quality is probably F5.6-F11.

Phase detect AF is acceptable, Live View AF is very slow and barely usable for hand held photos. AF accuracy similar to other camera driven lenses. Manual focusing is smooth. I'm missing some kind of focus limiter on this lens and also aperture ring would be nice to keep to retain back-compatibility with film bodies and also to enable users to mount lens on various tubes.

When you attach this lens to AF 1.7x Teleconverter which has own focusing mechanism, it transfers this lens into +/- fast focusing 170mm F5 Macro with even longer working distance.
   
New Member

Registered: May, 2012
Posts: 14

5 users found this helpful
Review Date: April 22, 2016 Recommended | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: construction, sharpness, size
Cons: -
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 10    Autofocus: 6    Handling: 10    Value: 10    New or Used: New    Camera Used: K-3   

What can I say, this lens is awsome. What does this lens so good?

1. Size - it will always go with you, it doesn't take much space in your bag.

2. Build quality - This is a limited lens, it doesn't read like this in the box but can't see any difference with a limited lens. The WR makes this little gem usable with any clima conditions.

3. Sharpness - Nothing to add to the reputation of the 100mm macro from Pentax, it's razor sharp

4. Bokeh - The rounded blades makes a buttery and creamy bokeh, really great. I wonder how it will render in the K-1

This is really a must have on Pentax line up, sharp, compact, well built, WR......only it's price can be a stopper for some people, but quality has a price.

Some examples so you can judge it's quality and bokeh:

https://www.flickr.com/photos/cvicente1932/25654380794

https://www.flickr.com/photos/cvicente1932/14033175681

https://www.flickr.com/photos/cvicente1932/14353757634

https://www.flickr.com/photos/cvicente1932/26259143025

https://www.flickr.com/photos/cvicente1932/26259150935

https://www.flickr.com/photos/cvicente1932/21247926463
   
Closed Account

Registered: March, 2015
Posts: 8,694
Review Date: April 16, 2016 Recommended | Price: $520.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Build quality, WR, small and light weight, image quality, sharpness
Cons: None for me.
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 10    Autofocus: 9    Handling: 10    Value: 10    New or Used: New    Camera Used: K-3   

This lens is a joy to use. The images obtained with it are outstanding even at f2.8. If macro photography is your preferred choice then this lens will not disappoint. Its sharpness, color rendition and bokeh are faultless IMO. If using AF, this lens can hunt, but this can be minimized by getting close to focus manually and then letting the AF take over. The build quality is excellent. It looks, feels and performs like a professional lens. It also teams beautifully with the 1.4X rear converter. I can highly recommend it.


   
Senior Member

Registered: November, 2015
Posts: 140
Review Date: March 14, 2016 Recommended | Price: $650.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: sharp, general IQ, WR, build quality
Cons: AF sometime hunts
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 10    Autofocus: 8    Handling: 10    Value: 10    New or Used: New    Camera Used: Pentax K-3   

This is one of the best lenses I have ever had. Outstanding IQ, very sharp even at f2.8 but some fringing occurs. Tack sharp between f3,5 and f8. AF hunts ocassionaly especially at close distance. Piece of art in build quality. A must have for everybody.
   
Site Supporter

Registered: April, 2014
Location: Boston-ish
Posts: 72
Review Date: January 28, 2016 Recommended | Price: $359.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Sharpness, colors, build quality
Cons:
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 10    Autofocus: 9    Handling: 10    Value: 10    New or Used: New    Camera Used: K-3   

Crazy sharp, even wide open. Colors and contrast are wonderful. AF is a little slow, particularly at close distances, but that is to be expected for a macro lens. Build quality is simply superb. Do I wish it had an aperture ring? Yes, but if it is a choice between that or WR, I'll take the WR. This lens should be in everyone's bag.
   
Senior Member

Registered: October, 2013
Location: "The Green Desert"
Posts: 175

4 users found this helpful
Review Date: December 24, 2015 Recommended | Price: $370.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Sharp, good contrast, fast.
Cons: AF can hunt a little bit in low light
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 10    Autofocus: 8    Handling: 10    Value: 10    New or Used: New    Camera Used: K3   

My Pentax dealer here in the UK (SRS Microsystems) recently had a sale weekend so I was able to pick up a brand new 100mm for 250, I think I've got a bargain.

The lens is beautifully constructed and the images produced better than I had hoped for.

Highly recommended especially for portraits.




   
Veteran Member

Registered: September, 2010
Location: Arizona
Posts: 442

3 users found this helpful
Review Date: December 7, 2015 Recommended | Price: $450.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: The sharpest Pentax lens available, IMHO. Great bokeh. Weather-resistant. Full Frame compatible.
Cons: Like almost all macro lenses, auto focus prone to "hunting." The provided lens hood makes using filters inconvenient without removal.
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 10    Autofocus: 7    Handling: 10    Value: 8    New or Used: New    Camera Used: K-3   

As a free-lance writer and photographer, I do a lot of product shots. From a tripod, photographing smaller inanimate objects, the SMC-DA 35mm Macro Limited has been my go-to lens for some time. It's only limiting factor is that one has to get pretty close to the subject for macro shots.

The SMC-D FA 100mm WR permits being at a bit of a distance to do macro work. This is an advantage in photographing such things as birds, insects, flowers in the wind, etc. To make this review short, I will say that hands down, this is absolutely the sharpest lens in my Pentax lineup (I have a total of 7 Pentax lenses for my K-3). In autofocus mode, the lens may take some time and hunt a bit over its wide range, which is from infinity to about 12 inches away from the subject. My solution is just to go manual, and move back and forward just a bit to get things in proper focus when in the field.

I love the bokeh the lens provides in the out-of-focus areas, and the fact that I can use it in inclement weather, since it's weather resistant. It's also full-frame compatible, so if I decide to opt for the coming Pentax full-frame camera, it will be usable for it, also.

I give the lens very high marks, and were it not for the focus hunting, I'd give it a "10" overall. But mark my words - you will have to look far and wide to find a sharper lens for macro work. Here are a few examples.

John

http://www.pentaxphotogallery.com/artists/paladin







Add Review of SMC Pentax-D FA 100mm F2.8 Macro WR Buy the SMC Pentax-D FA 100mm F2.8 Macro WR



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