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SMC Pentax-FA 50mm F1.7

Reviews Views Date of last review
38 231,658 Fri October 18, 2019
Recommended By Average Price Average User Rating
100% of reviewers $178.09 9.61
SMC Pentax-FA 50mm F1.7

SMC Pentax-FA 50mm F1.7
SMC Pentax-FA 50mm F1.7

This is a fast, compact standard lens.

SMC Pentax-FA 50mm F1.7
©, sharable with attribution
Image Format
Full-frame / 35mm film
Lens Mount
Pentax K
Aperture Ring
Yes (A setting)
Automatic, 6 blades
6 elements, 5 groups
Mount Variant
Check camera compatibility
Max. Aperture
Min. Aperture
AF (screwdrive)
Min. Focus
45 cm
Max. Magnification
Filter Size
49 mm
Internal Focus
Field of View (Diag. / Horiz.)

APS-C: 32 ° / 27 °
Full frame: 47 ° / 40 °
PH-SA49, PH-RA49, RH-RC49
Lens Cap
Lens Cap F 49mm
Weather Sealing
Other Features
Diam x Length
65 x 37 mm (2.5 x 1.5 in.)
170 g (6 oz.)
Production Years
1991 to 2004
Engraved Name
smc PENTAX-FA 1:1.7 50mm
Product Code
User reviews
Various hoods with 49mm thread will fit
Screwdrive AutofocusAperture RingAutomatic ApertureFull-Frame SupportDiscontinued
Sample Photos: View Sample Photos
Price History:

Add Review of SMC Pentax-FA 50mm F1.7
Sort Reviews by: Date | Author | Rating | Recommendation | Likes (Descending) Showing Reviews 31-38 of 38
Inactive Account

Registered: August, 2009
Location: Lapu-Lapu City Cebu
Posts: 14
Lens Review Date: May 25, 2010 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: N/A | Rating: 9 

Pros: very good for portraiture
Cons: no lens hood

this is a must for portrait shots the details are very sharp/fine - i have tested it with my new k-x and it blends well with it - i have to experiment more with this lens @ slow shutter speed on a landscape to see how far this would go...

The only thing i don't know if this lens can be attached or have a lens hood with it?

Over- All - i rate it @ 8.75 because of it's quality and price
New Member

Registered: November, 2009
Location: Toronto
Posts: 24

2 users found this helpful
Lens Review Date: March 21, 2010 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $130.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: sharp, flat field
Cons: slow af performance

only knock it by 1 because it's slow af performance same with the fa 50mm 1.4. they aren't da lenses so can't expect much from old technology besides the resolving power of the glass.

this is very contrasty, sharp, and excellent for portraits. i match this on my k20d and its deadly.

this is an impressive 50mm lens provides good value to get the most out of your sensor.
Veteran Member

Registered: May, 2009
Location: Vancouver, B.C.
Posts: 6,513

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: November 29, 2009 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: N/A | Rating: 10 

Pros: two of the sharpest "50mm"

as mentioned, this one of the sharpest 50mm ever made. the FA50/2.8 macro is the sharper one and got the best bokeh rendering but the 1.7 has a 1 stop and a third advantage over the 2.8. that is a lot of light and OOF isolation factor.

also, at f2 sharpness and f2/8, it is equal to that of the FA35/2. except that the 50/1.7 has a brighter exposure than the 35.
New Member

Registered: May, 2007
Location: Chicago
Posts: 24
Lens Review Date: February 15, 2009 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $90.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Sharpness and color rendition
Cons: Possibly a bit narrow field on digital

This is by far my favourite lens, on my ist DL it made a world of diffrence, I always used this for portraits, on my K20, I am so stunned by the IQ with the kit lens that it seems to narrow the gap between lenses. I have to say that I find mine to produce the highest quality images at the 2.8 f-stop setting, could just be me though. All of my pentax-using friends now own this lens as well.
Veteran Member

Registered: January, 2008
Location: Florida
Posts: 514

4 users found this helpful
Lens Review Date: July 13, 2008 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $175.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Sharp! Quick focus, fast, Monet masterpiece bokeh
Cons: hard to find, Monet masterpiece bokeh

I will never sell this lens. Wonderful performance all around. Useful focal length. This is the lens on my camera by default. Love it. Only comes off when I need zoom versatility or longer focal length.

The color saturation is very satisfying and the sharpness is consistant through the entire aperture range from edge to edge of the frame. You just have to learn to manage the depth of field to master it.

The bokeh is the debate for this lens. It renders out of focus backgrounds like a Monet painting. It is not creamy smooth, but neither is it harsh and distracting in most conditions (wide open it can be a tad obnoxious). I like it a lot. The rendering is very unique in that people have at first glance mistaken some of my portrait work for paintings rather than photographs. I don't know if that's good or not, but it makes for interesting discussions and its pictures get attention & generate more work for me. That says something.

Frankly, I like the bokeh a lot for it's uniqueness and for the fact that background often sets the stage giving context to a scene. Creamy smooth color transitions can make an exciting portrait into a plain picture. Besides, if you find it a bit harsh, a little software work can fix it in a snap, however it's significantly more difficult to bring definition out of a background that is too soft.
Veteran Member

Registered: December, 2007
Posts: 8,241

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: June 7, 2008 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: N/A | Rating: 9 

Pros: Extremely sharp at all apertures, especially larger
Cons: none

Found this lens in a local store and almost didn't buy it, because I already have the FA 50 1.4. Boy, am I glad I did. It's sharper at the lower apertures than the FA 50 1.4 - 1.7 and 2.0 are sharper. After that, it evens out.

Because of it's incredible performance at the lower f-stops, this has become by go-to low light lens now, replacing the Fa 50 1.4. I mostly use the 1.4 for when I absolutely need 1.4, or want it's special bokeh.

Very highly recommended.
Senior Member

Registered: August, 2007
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 233

4 users found this helpful
Lens Review Date: March 12, 2008 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $155.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Fast. Super Sharp Wide Open. Light. Autofocus.
Cons: none

I have owned so many 50mm's (and multiple samples of almost all of them). The M1.4, M1.7, A1.7, FA1.4, DFA2.8 as well as numerous 3rd party 50's.

This one is the best.

Wide open, this lens will beat any 1.4 in terms of sharpness up to f2.8. After that, it is about even. This lens is a bit cooler in color than the 1.4, but I like that. Some prefer the bokeh produced by the 8-blade 1.4, but I personally think the 1.7 still renders out of focus beautifully.

Compared to the DFA 50mm f2.8 Macro, it is about the same in terms of center sharpness. The macro has the added benefit of excellent corner and edge sharpness. However, the macro is a large lens (almost double in size and weight) and it is slower. The macro is much more a special purpose lens.

Optical formula-wise, all the 1.7's are almost the same. The F and FA have autofocus, and life is just a bit easier with autofocus. However I have found the FA version to perform even better than the M and the A versions. The reason for this is that the FA1.7 and the FA1.4 are identical in size. (Normally the 1.4's are larger lenses). This results in the FA1.7 having a recessed front element almost like some macro lenses. (It is quite a bit recessed). The result is a built-in hood effect which helps increase sharpness and contrast even without a hood. In fact, this is one of very few lenses where adding a hood only gives a very marginal improvement. I'm not sure about the F version (I think it is also similar).

This lens took me a very long time to find (thanks Tom! for giving me a great deal), but of all the 50's definitely my favorite.
New Member

Registered: November, 2006
Location: Utah
Posts: 1

2 users found this helpful
Lens Review Date: April 28, 2007 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: N/A | Rating: 10 

Pros: Fast aperture, superb image quality, fast focus
Cons: None

This is one lens I wish I had not sold. I've had the F1.4, F1.7 and F2.0 versions of this series and the F1.7 would be my preference. Sure, you lose almost one stop over the F1.4, but I found that the bokeh was equal to the F1.4 and the color rendition / accuracy was better with the F1.7. There was a certain "feel" about the F1.7 especially with natural light; the tones were accurate and not over saturated like you sometimes get with the F1.4.

I highly recommend the F1.7 for portraits and close-focus work. It's also light weight and very well balanced on digital or film bodies.
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