Forgot Password
Pentax Camera Forums Home
 

Pentax Lens Review Database » Film Era Pentax K-Mount Lenses » FA Prime Lenses
SMC Pentax-FA 50mm F1.7 Review RSS Feed

SMC Pentax-FA 50mm F1.7

Sharpness 
 9.8
Aberrations 
 9.3
Bokeh 
 9.2
Autofocus 
 9.3
Handling 
 9.4
Value 
 9.9
Reviews Views Date of last review
38 231,532 Fri October 18, 2019
spacer
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
supersize
SMC Pentax-FA 50mm F1.7
supersize

Description:
This is a fast, compact standard lens.

SMC Pentax-FA 50mm F1.7
© www.pentaxforums.com, sharable with attribution
Image Format
Full-frame / 35mm film
Lens Mount
Pentax K
Aperture Ring
Yes (A setting)
Diaphragm
Automatic, 6 blades
Optics
6 elements, 5 groups
Mount Variant
KAF
Check camera compatibility
Max. Aperture
F1.7
Min. Aperture
F22
Focusing
AF (screwdrive)
Quick-shift
No
Min. Focus
45 cm
Max. Magnification
0.15x
Filter Size
49 mm
Internal Focus
No
Field of View (Diag. / Horiz.)

APS-C: 32 ° / 27 °
Full frame: 47 ° / 40 °
Hood
PH-SA49, PH-RA49, RH-RC49
Case
S70-70
Lens Cap
Lens Cap F 49mm
Coating
SMC
Weather Sealing
No
Other Features
Diam x Length
65 x 37 mm (2.5 x 1.5 in.)
Weight
170 g (6 oz.)
Production Years
1991 to 2004
Engraved Name
smc PENTAX-FA 1:1.7 50mm
Product Code
20907
Reviews
User reviews
Notes
Various hoods with 49mm thread will fit
Features:
Screwdrive AutofocusAperture RingAutomatic ApertureFull-Frame SupportDiscontinued
Sample Photos: View Sample Photos
Price History:



Add Review of SMC Pentax-FA 50mm F1.7
Author:
Sort Reviews by: Date | Author | Rating | Recommendation | Likes (Descending) Showing Reviews 1-15 of 38
Junior Member

Registered: July, 2018
Posts: 33
Lens Review Date: October 18, 2019 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $130.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Fast, small
Cons: Screw drive AF, noisy
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 10    Autofocus: 8    Handling: 10    Value: 10    New or Used: Used    Camera Used: K-50   

My first prime, now my go-to-lens for everything where I do not need more reach. Definitely recommended, especially for being this compact while being robust.
   
Loyal Site Supporter

Registered: May, 2015
Location: Hampshire
Posts: 891
Lens Review Date: September 17, 2019 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: N/A | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Fast and quick.
Cons: None.
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 9    Autofocus: 10    Handling: 10    Value: 10    New or Used: Used    Camera Used: K-5   

A recent purchase, bought blind with a little trepidation as to condition. Big sigh of relief after receipt. It is hard to believe someone would sell this gem unless they had purchased something better and didn't use it any more.
This is the best of the 50mm lenses I own, A or M 50mm F1.7. I have no Pentax F1.4 so it gets a 10.
Looking at the results I believe it to be much better than my Canon 50mm F1.8 11 and my Minolta 50mm F1.7 though I am unable to compare them on the same body, the K-5 is my best and most expensive body purchase.
I have a Nikon 50mm f1.8G coming so will have another AF 50mm to play with.
Taken last evening with onboard flash, just put the camera on the ground and tilted it slightly. I wanted to get an image quickly without disturbing Mrs Tiggywinkle to much. The dried mealworms I put down had the effect of making the head look around even though I was only a few feet away.
Slightly cropped. Should have stopped down more.
   
New Member

Registered: January, 2018
Location: Paris
Posts: 8

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: February 5, 2018 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $150.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Outstanding IQ, bokeh, IQ already good at PO
Cons: Build although metal mount and much better af and build than plastic da501.8
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 9    Autofocus: 8    Handling: 8    Value: 10    New or Used: Used    Camera Used: K5 and k1   

Had already a50 1,4, fa 50 1,4 etc...
this one mint conditions for 150$.The fa 1.7 is better from P.O. to 2.8.
1,4 are too soft until 2.2 for my taste
From 4.0 almost identical
Bokeh is nice, as COLOR rendering

Example, center cropped, wo pp=K1 direct jpeg at 2,5 iso 1600, no hood ... :


Pure résolution at F4 (few cropped center ,k5 iso 800, with few pp for black tones of bad reflects daylight conditions, no flash, no hood)


I recommand, great with k1(and apsc) if you can find one but will be hard /rare and a keeper so will be pricey...
   
Junior Member

Registered: October, 2012
Location: Oregon, USA
Posts: 47

3 users found this helpful
Lens Review Date: July 27, 2017 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $139.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Sharp, Fast AF, DOF scale
Cons: Lack of quick shift, plastic
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 9    Autofocus: 9    Handling: 10    Value: 10    New or Used: Used    Camera Used: K-5   

This is my second copy of the lens. The first was sold after getting the 70mm Limited lens. I regretted that decision and finally picked up another one of these gems.

Fantastic lens, great performance with its sharpness, contrast, bokeh, fast screwdrive AF (on a K-5), great colors, lightweight and non-intimidating to a subject, etc. Just a great lens.

Notes:
Front element does not rotate when focusing, but the focus ring itself does rotate during AF. Fortunately, it is easy to avoid contact. No quick shift adjustment after autofocus

This lens actually has a usable depth of field scale for hyper focusing and maximizing DOF. Adjust for a APSC sensor if needed.

I picked up the 49mm screw-in Asahi Takumar lens hood designed for the 135/150/200mm lenses. It is deep and dark, eliminating lights from getting in from the sides and affecting the image. Even though the hood seems long, on a APSC sensor there is no vignetting from the hood. Find them online (here?) for less than USD $15 in great condition.

If this lens had WR sealing, additional (rounded) aperture blades, and a quiet DC style motor, it would be a nearly perfect lens. As is, it is still a great lens. Perhaps the D FA* 50mm will pack all of the features…

If you see this lens, pick it up. You will not be sorry.
---
Pics with the Asahi Takumar lens hood attached


   
New Member

Registered: September, 2014
Posts: 3

2 users found this helpful
Lens Review Date: June 26, 2016 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $150.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Sharpness, light, fast
Cons:
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 9    Autofocus: 9    Handling: 10    Value: 10    New or Used: New    Camera Used: Pentax K1 (FF)   

For me, the best for my Pentax K1 in trekking, small, light, with a FA100mm F:2.8 macro in the Backpack, and a FA28mm F:2.8 AL.

   
Junior Member

Registered: June, 2012
Posts: 47

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: June 7, 2016 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $220.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Sharper than other 50mm
Cons: Plastic build
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 9    Autofocus: 10    Handling: 9    Value: 9    New or Used: Used    Camera Used: K5   

This FA50 1.7 seems not largely produced than other 50s. You need some patience to find one in good condition.
I compared this fa with my a50 1.7. In terms of sharpness and and color, this fa is much better. I guess newer lens do better in this area. Purple fringing is a problem in high contrast settings, so is the A50. Not sure about DA50, maybe new coating will do better. But I have DA35 2.4, I hate this DA plastic build quality. This fa is also plastic casing, but with metal mount and better built.
Besides purple fringing in some setting, this lens is a must have for portraits. I am not a bokeh expert, cannot tell too much in this. I also found this lens AF is faster than my 18-55 WR.

Attached one random low light shot. See the color rendering on K-5, looks like film!
   
New Member

Registered: September, 2015
Posts: 2

3 users found this helpful
Lens Review Date: September 19, 2015 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $50.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: sharp, fast, great colors and bokeh, lightweight.
Cons: none, maybe plastic body is a little unattractive
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 9    Autofocus: 10    Handling: 10    Value: 10    New or Used: Used    Camera Used: Pentax ist DS   

Best normal lens from Pentax, sharp and fast focusing. Sharper than the FA50mm f1.4, is overall preferable if f1.7 is enough fo you.

Great lens overall, beats other famous lenses also one the value side.

Absolutely recommended!

   
Senior Member

Registered: March, 2010
Location: Svealand
Posts: 172

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: July 5, 2015 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $210.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Sharp, bokeh, fast
Cons: Plastic
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 10    Autofocus: 10    Handling: 10    Value: 10    New or Used: Used    Camera Used: Pentax K-5   

A fantastic lens with only one downside - It's not made of metal
   
Pentaxian

Registered: March, 2010
Location: Vermont
Posts: 922

4 users found this helpful
Lens Review Date: February 23, 2015 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $200.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Sharpness, quick focus, fast
Cons: None
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 10    Autofocus: 10    Handling: 10    Value: 10    New or Used: Used    Camera Used: K-3   

Truly an amazing lens. I actually sold my DA 50 1.8 to get this lens and I am happy I did. Focusing seems to be more precise, quieter, and locks focus with more confidence than the DA 1.8. Too bad this one is so rare. It is, in my opinion the best 50 1.7/1.8 autofocus lens Pentax has made.
   
New Member

Registered: May, 2014
Posts: 1

3 users found this helpful
Lens Review Date: June 16, 2014 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $102.50 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: ultra sharp, small, fast focus, low light, bokeh
Cons: CA, hard to find one
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 9    Autofocus: 10    Handling: 10    Value: 10    New or Used: Used    Camera Used: K50   

I bought mine on ebay. It was stated as mint but at the arrival there were several fungus threads between elements. Unfortunately after disassembling the lens I found that front and back elements are factory sealed and fungus can't be removed. Even plastic part of the front element was damaged. Anyway I killed the threads using concentrated sunlight, I washed each parts in medical alcohol and it stopped spreading. I'm not a professional photographer but it isn't influencing the image quality and I can shoot insanely sharp and good pictures.

Overall it's a really good value. I hesitated between F1.4 and F1.7. Maybe I'll invest in a F1.4 later but right now I'm satisfied with its sharpness, low light shots and bokeh.

You don't need to close aperture for sharpness because it's sharp at 1.7. But at 2.8 it goes insanely sharp even at the edges.

Fungus at front element:


It was a surprise at cleaning. Force damage on plastic of the front element:


After this shock I'm still satisfied with the results:






Taken at night (no additional lighting) on f1.7 ISO 3200 1/10s:
   
Senior Member

Registered: January, 2013
Location: Lincoln
Posts: 106
Lens Review Date: October 17, 2013 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $16.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Sharp, fast and accurate
Cons: None really but I could say plasticky
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 8    Autofocus: 9    Handling: 9    Value: 10    New or Used: Used    Camera Used: K-30   

I picked one of these up for a tenner (£10) because it was a tenner. It was not until I checked ebay that I realised what a ridiculous bargain I had got. I haven't used this lens nearly enough as opportunities have been few this summer but when I have used it I have loved it. Sure and quick to find focus, sharp sharp and even more sharp, accurate colours and pretty good bokeh. Nice and fast. Feels a bit flimsy but I can live with that and I will have to get some sort of hood for it but if I could get bargains like this everyday...
   
New Member

Registered: February, 2013
Posts: 3

7 users found this helpful
Lens Review Date: February 11, 2013 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $270.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Sharpness, speed autofocus, bokeh,...
Cons: Plastic, to find something.
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 10    Autofocus: 10    Handling: 10    Value: 10    New or Used: Used    Camera Used: Kr   

This lens is extraordinary. Nothing to complain about.
A must for the portrait.

Sharpness at f5.6


Bokeh at f1.7


More examples here
   
Veteran Member

Registered: June, 2011
Location: Near Sydney, NSW
Posts: 331

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: November 2, 2012 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $360.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Stupidly sharp wide open or otherwise
Cons: 6 sided bokeh not 8 (worth it for the sharpness over that f1.4 version)
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 10    Autofocus: 10    Handling: 10    Value: 10    New or Used: New    Camera Used: Pentax K-5   

I've owned two copies of this lens and one of the F-version, which is optically the same.
All 3 have been outrageously sharp. In fact I thought my Sigma 105mm f2.8 was sharp until I saw these lenses at f2.0. Suddenly everything else was soft.

The 6 sided bokeh is almost always fine, and sometimes quite lovely, but occassionally a bit messy. I can live with that - compared to the f1.4 version which is just soft soft soft, but has nice bokeh.

That's about all there is to say except for:
Um, Pentax - if you can make a lens this sharp - why is the FA 50mm f1.4 so NOT sharp, and why is THAT the one still in production? That would be like discontinuing the K-5 and continuing to make the istD.
   
Inactive Account

Registered: October, 2011
Posts: 1

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: October 2, 2012 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $190.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Sharp, sharp, sharp, fast, color, contrast
Cons: none
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 9    Autofocus: 9    Handling: 10    Value: 10    New or Used: Used    Camera Used: K-r   

I own this lens quite a while. Great for portrait shooting. Very nice color-rendering. Contrasty pictures and lightweight. Well built. And sharp open wide, razorsharp stopped down (F 2,0/2,2). I love it.
   
Junior Member

Registered: December, 2010
Posts: 33

2 users found this helpful
Lens Review Date: September 29, 2012 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $110.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Sharpness, bokeh, contrast
Cons: none really
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 10    Autofocus: 8    Handling: 10    Value: 10    New or Used: Used    Camera Used: Pentax K-5   

Fantastic lens, very sharp and beautiful contrast, I use it a lot because of its image quality.
Add Review of SMC Pentax-FA 50mm F1.7



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 12:54 AM. | See also: NikonForums.com, CanonForums.com part of our network of photo forums!
  • Red (Default)
  • Green
  • Gray
  • Dark
  • Dark Yellow
  • Dark Blue
  • Old Red
  • Old Green
  • Old Gray
  • Dial-Up Style
Hello! It's great to see you back on the forum! Have you considered joining the community?
register
Creating a FREE ACCOUNT takes under a minute, removes ads, and lets you post! [Dismiss]
Top