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SMC Pentax-FA 645 400mm F5.6 ED [IF] Review RSS Feed

SMC Pentax-FA 645 400mm F5.6 ED [IF]

Reviews Views Date of last review
7 31,493 Mon May 21, 2018
Recommended By Average Price Average User Rating
100% of reviewers $1,228.57 9.14
SMC Pentax-FA 645 400mm F5.6 ED [IF]


Autofocus telephoto lens with internal focusing and a tripod mount. It is relatively light for a 400mm medium format lens.

SMC Pentax-FA 645 400mm F5.6 ED [IF]
©, sharable with attribution
Image Format
645 film
Lens Mount
Pentax 645
Aperture Ring
Yes (A setting)
Automatic, 8 blades
7 elements, 6 groups
Mount Variant
645 AF
Check camera compatibility
Max. Aperture
Min. Aperture
AF (screwdrive)
Min. Focus
300 cm
Max. Magnification
Filter Size
77 mm
Internal Focus
Field of View (Diag. / Horiz.)

645 Digital: 7.9 ° / 6.3 °
645 Film: 10 ° / 8 °
PH-RBE 77 bayonet
Lens Cap
Plastic clip-on
Weather Sealing
Other Features
Push-pull AF/MF Focusing Ring,Tripod Mount
Diam x Length
83 x 252 mm (3.3 x 9.9 in.)
1260 g (w/o attachments) (44.5 oz.)
Production Years
(in production)
$2299 USD current price
Engraved Name
smc PENTAX-FA 645 1:5.6 400mm ED[IF]
Product Code
User reviews
ED elements.

Screwdrive AutofocusInternal FocusingAperture RingAutomatic ApertureMedium-Format SupportAdapter needed for DSLRs
Purchase: Buy the SMC Pentax-FA 645 400mm F5.6 ED [IF]

Add Review of SMC Pentax-FA 645 400mm F5.6 ED [IF] Buy the SMC Pentax-FA 645 400mm F5.6 ED [IF]
Sort Reviews by: Date | Author | Rating | Recommendation | Likes (Descending) Showing Reviews 1-7 of 7
Site Supporter

Registered: February, 2018
Location: NoVA
Posts: 395

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: May 21, 2018 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $700.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Nicely sharp, light for its length
Cons: Bokeh is only so-so
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 4    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: 645z   

Reasonably sharp even wide open. I will not hesitate to use this lens wide open, unless I need more depth of field.

Bokeh shows some bright-line effect with busy backgrounds; not the best. Also not what this lens is for--I use it when trying to make distant things sharp, not when trying to make them smooth.

Work just as well with the 1.4 converter.

Mirror vibration is a factor with this lens. Even on a sturdy Gitzo tripod, I needed mirror lockup to avoid a vertical shake of the image.

I saw the slightest bit of purple fringing around high-contrast highlights, but really it's too small to really notice.

Full scene at f/5.6

1:1 at f/5.6, not much loss compared to f/11

1:1 at f/11

Rick "solid performer" Denney
New Member

Registered: December, 2014
Posts: 2

2 users found this helpful
Lens Review Date: September 19, 2015 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $1,100.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Manual focus, tripod mount, weight, image quality, sharpness
Cons: Aberrations, image stabilizer No;-)
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: 645z   

The telephoto lens is unique in combination with the 645z.
The image quality is very good, also the sharpness. It's not as simple as to produce the 28-45 permanently sharp images.
Mirror shock, tripod head wind at shutter speeds below the "focal length" gladly produce blur / shake.
Value for money is perfect.
The tripod mount is very good, because it locks the twist by 90 . "Perfect"
Manually focusing is fantastic, as you can "screw"

I am wondering about a teleconverter to buy, because I still want something more focal length at MF.


Registered: February, 2008
Posts: 424

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: March 1, 2013 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $1,100.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: sharp, light, not expensive
Cons: not f/4, but then it wouldn't be light
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: 645D   

The lens is quite light and very sharp when used at high shutter speeds or very secure tripod mount at lower speeds. It doesn't have the build quality of * lens, but the optical quality is in the same league. I find the AF reasonably fast (but I was using manual focus lenses before the 645D so my perspective may be different) more importantly,I find the AF very accurate. Here's an example handheld with the AF tracking the merganser:

takeoff by tsjanik47, on Flickr
Inactive Account

Registered: July, 2011
Posts: 7
Lens Review Date: November 5, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $1,800.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: light sharp and not very expensive.
Cons: CA in high contrast, S L O W .. coming from nikon.
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 3    Bokeh: 7    Handling: 9    Value: 8   

very light and sharp lens, i hiked with 645d, very good sharp birds photos (only test) . however it is extremely slow compared to new nikon and canon counterparts.
Junior Member

Registered: November, 2009
Posts: 29
Lens Review Date: August 9, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $1,500.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: light weight, sharp
Cons: long (but necessary)
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 10    Value: 9   

This lens is very sharp and relatively light weight for its length. It is about as long of a lens for the 645D as I'd typically travel with (the length starts chewing up limited storage space in a backpack). With that in mind, I think a nice telephoto travel set with the 400/5.6 is the 75/2.8, the 120 FA macro and the 200 FA. (If weight/size needs to be kept to a minimum, then I'd go with the 75/2.8, the 150 FA and 300/5.6.)

The 400/5.6 seems to focus slightly slower than the 300/5.6 (but maybe my imagination) and not as close. WIth the hood in place, it is very large (long). Stopping down to f8 does seem to improve the sharpness. I tend to use it on a tripod (Really Right Stuff TVC-24 carbon fiber tripod) with the mirror up and my hand on top of the lens to add weight and dampen vibration.
Forum Member

Registered: November, 2007
Location: Germany
Posts: 98
Lens Review Date: April 29, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $1,100.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: light, build quality, optical quality
Cons: none
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 9    Value: 9   

I recently bought this lens second hand to use with an adapter on my Pentax K-5 and I must say it does not disappoint. It is lightweight and can be handheld though it can be hit and miss even with the anti-shake as it equals 600mm on a fullframe equivalent.

AF does not work with the adapter and neither does the aperture automatic, so you have to step down but as the lens is already brillant wide open this is no big deal. It does just work with the 1.7 AF adapter - but only in brighter conditions. Here these results are also high quality.

At the price I paid I consider it a bargain taking into account that other than its A brother it features ED elements.
Junior Member

Registered: January, 2011
Location: Perthshire
Posts: 29

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: March 6, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $1,300.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Very sharp, not heavy, efficient hood.
Cons: Does not focus very close. AF hunts a bit.

This lens looks enormous when complete with its large lenshood but is surprisingly light for its size. It is very sharp at f5.6 and remains so until at least f16. However extreme care is required to get sharp images due to shake/vibration etc even when mounted on a good strong tripod. You really have to hone your long-lens technique to get this one to work for you. But when you get things right the results are extremely pleasing.

It does not focus particularly close and so is not very suitable for small subjects, eg. garden birds, and I find the AF tends to hunt a bit, probably due to the f5.6 max. aperture.
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