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SMC Pentax-FA 80-320mm F4.5-5.6 Review RSS Feed

SMC Pentax-FA 80-320mm F4.5-5.6

Sharpness 
 8.3
Aberrations 
 7.9
Bokeh 
 8.0
Autofocus 
 7.3
Handling 
 8.1
Value 
 9.2
Reviews Views Date of last review
38 188,636 Mon March 4, 2019
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Recommended By Average Price Average User Rating
92% of reviewers $143.03 7.95
SMC Pentax-FA 80-320mm F4.5-5.6
supersize


Description:
This extreme-telephoto zoom lens has a great aperture range for its focal length. When zoomed to 80mm, it is very compact. Note that a silver-colored version also exists.



SMC Pentax-FA 80-320mm F4.5-5.6
© www.pentaxforums.com, sharable with attribution
Image Format
Full-frame / 35mm film
Lens Mount
Pentax K
Aperture Ring
Yes (A setting)
Diaphragm
Automatic, 8 blades
Optics
13 elements, 10 groups
Mount Variant
KAF
Check camera compatibility
Max. Aperture
F4.5-5.6
Min. Aperture
F32-38
Focusing
AF (screwdrive)
Quick-shift
No
Min. Focus
150 cm
Max. Magnification
0.28x
Filter Size
58 mm
Internal Focus
No
Field of View (Diag. / Horiz.)

APS-C: 20-5.2 ° / 17-4.3 °
Full frame: 30-7.7 ° / 25-6.4 °
Hood
RH-A58
Case
S80-160
Lens Cap
Plastic clip-on
Coating
SMC
Weather Sealing
No
Other Features
Diam x Length
74 x 129 mm (2.9 x 5.1 in.)
Weight
550 g (19.4 oz.)
Production Years
1997 to 2002
Engraved Name
smc PENTAX-FA 1:4.5-5.6 80-320mm
Product Code
27607 (black), 27608 (silver/black)
Reviews
User reviews
Variants
Silver and silver/black
Features:
Screwdrive AutofocusAperture RingAutomatic ApertureFull-Frame SupportDiscontinued
Sample Photos: View Sample Photos
Price History:



Add Review of SMC Pentax-FA 80-320mm F4.5-5.6
Author:
Sort Reviews by: Date | Author | Rating | Recommendation | Likes (Descending) Showing Reviews 1-15 of 38
Site Supporter

Registered: October, 2018
Posts: 201

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: March 4, 2019 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $115.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Very good on the Pentax K5. Sharp between 80 and 240 mm. Very good contrast.
Cons: Performance weakens somewhat at long focal lengths.
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 8    Autofocus: 10    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: Pentax K5   

   
Senior Member

Registered: January, 2011
Location: zagreb
Posts: 221

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: February 12, 2019 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $100.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Nice range, lightweight size, good value, overall IQ and fantastic range (320mm) for money
Cons: The dispute, there is no original hood, crawling with zoom-autofocus, rotating front element
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 7    Bokeh: 9    Autofocus: 7    Handling: 7    Value: 9    Camera Used: K1   

The silver version, not black, was used for ebay, later purchased a metal hood from ebay because there was no original, it was necessary to calibrate, done in house work, I found a description of the action and succeeded from the first.
The lens is lightweight and it looks quite firmly and surprisingly large optical IQ as it is a lens kit with such a low price. After calibration satisfyingly sharp across the full range and nominal apertures, the hey f5.6 to 320mm is super. With the replacement hood contrast throughout the range is super, neglected with vignettes, it also suffers from creaking / pulling the lens when it is facing down, focusing is fairly quick and decisive in good light but loud, at low / poor light the focus is pretty bad because a lot of it goes first to the maximum and then returns to the minimum and then searches for the focus - only bad for high-capacity lens with low price,

Before I used K-x / r / 3/30 with Pentax-DA 55-300mm F4-5.8 ED or Sigma 70-300mm F4-5.6 APO DG Macro now FA 80-320mm F4.5-5.6 on K1 I look sharper and with a better focus in good light

My recommendation to use at K1 if you need a long / optically decent / cheap lens

the look of the old used about 19 years with ebay lenses with a replacement hood




some examples of photos with Pentax FA 80-320 / 4,5-5,6 + Pentax K1


PENTAX K-1
ISO : 100
Shutter Speed: 1/250 sec.
Aperture: 1: 6.3
glass/length: 128 mm
in 35 mm: 128 m

PENTAX K-1
ISO: 500
Shutter Speed: 1/500 sec.
Aperture: 1: 8
glass/length: 180 mm
in 35 mm: 180 mm


*PENTAX K-1
ISO: 100
Shutter Speed: 1/160 sec.
Aperture: 1: 5.6
glass/length: 260 mm
in 35 mm: 260 mm


PENTAX K-1
ISO: 100
Shutter Speed: 1/125 sec.
Aperture: 1: 5.6
glass/length: 320 mm
in 35 mm: 320 mm
   
New Member

Registered: March, 2016
Posts: 5
Lens Review Date: June 20, 2018 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $120.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Zoom range, IQ, size, weight
Cons: rotating front element, no dedicated hood
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 9    Autofocus: 9    Handling: 9    Value: 10    Camera Used: K3II   

This lens (gray version) is better by far than my 55-300 that will be sold. Maybe the focal range with APS-C is worst but but that depends on the use:

-Is a bit longer.
-Is a bit faster, aperture and focus.
-Has a bit better IQ.
-Has less vigneting.
-Has less distorsion.
-Has 8 blades so bokeh is better.
-Cormatic aberrations are similar.
-Is more solid, like the most old stuff.
-If someday you upgrade to K1 you will can use.


I have to microadjust the AF to -5 to get a perfect focus.



Mine has a problem, cant focus to infinity but that is so easy to fix.

1-Take off the bubber front ring
2-Take off the 3 screws
3-Take off the plastic ring
4-Zoom at 320 and rotate focus ring to infinity
5-Now you can see 3 more screws with something like rails.
6-Loose this 3 screws then rotate a bit the front barrel to left.
7-Try if now can focus to infinity
8-YES? Mount it again NO? Rotate a bit more to left the front barrel.

Now you have a good telezoom!!

9-Buy a hood

Now you have a GREAT telezoom!!
   
New Member

Registered: July, 2016
Posts: 1

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: July 4, 2016 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $120.00 | Rating: 7 

 
Pros: Acceptable price for the received quality
Cons: IQ, sharpness and built qualtiy
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 6    Bokeh: 7    Autofocus: 7    Handling: 6    Value: 8    Camera Used: K1   

For the paid price it's okay but it's not a great lens. You can take good pictures with it but at full extend the IQ is getting worse and can't be denied.
The AF isn't to my satisfaction either, it's to slow and sometimes not reliable. I know that's a good deal of focal length but it's just to slow for any kind of fast moving objects.
Sharpness is good at center but decrease a good deal to the corners.
The Bokeh isn't bad but not really impressive either.
Zoom creep is a thing and the built quality is plastic. It feel still robust and like a good lens to handle mistreating but I dislike this rattling construction.
The colours didn't look beautiful as with some other lenses, it's a bit dull.

The good point of this lens is a good deal of focal length for a fair price. When you can avoid to shoot high contrasts it's a good lens even at 320mm.
What I can't recommend shoot with it are birds. 1. Sky = high contrast, 2. fast moving objects.
It's probably a lot more robust than it feel but I'm upgrading to a used DA*300mm f4 which impressed me in all matters.
   
Junior Member

Registered: September, 2015
Location: Hampshire
Posts: 48

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: March 11, 2016 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $140.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Good zoom range with long focal length on APS-C camera
Cons: Large and heavy(ish)
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 8    Autofocus: 9    Handling: 9    Value: 10    Camera Used: K-S2   

I have the silver version, made in Taiwan bought secondhand from SRS Microsystems with a one year guarantee.

I'm really enjoying using the lens when out in the countryside. Using the TAv setting on my K-S2 it's possible to get some cracking long distance shots fully zoomed out, obviously DoF can be quite shallow then.

I'm still experimenting with settings but find for animals/birds anything around F9-F16 and 1/320-1/500 give good results. You can also get pretty good close-ups (flowers etc.) using similar F settings and slower speeds around 1/160.

The focusing is quite noisy, but very fast, usually locking on without hunting when using the viewfinder - I've not tried LV with it.

Overall I'm very happy with the lens and probably won't need anything longer (APS-C = 480 35mm equivalent focal length).
   
New Member

Registered: October, 2014
Posts: 14

2 users found this helpful
Lens Review Date: July 26, 2015 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $90.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: colores, contraste, tamaño contenido
Cons: velocidad de enfoque, construccion
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 9    Autofocus: 7    Handling: 8    Value: 9    Camera Used: k50, k5, k200   

Muy buen lente. Teleobjetivo largo, con definición destacable, colores vivos y contraste suficiente. Si bien a mas de 250mm decae un poco el rendimiento, sigue siendo usable hasta en la focal mas larga. El enfoque es algo lento, pero nada preocupante. La version color gris, tiene rendimiento optico y mecanico superior (inexplicablemente porque en teoria son identicos) El peso es contenido y el tamaño tambien. Combinado con los altos isos que permite el sensor sony de 16mpx permite olvidarse de aperturas de 2.8, del 70-200 y poder trabajar en interiores sin problemas, incluso en focales mucho mas largas.
   
Pentaxian

Registered: January, 2015
Location: mid nth coast,nsw
Posts: 4,012

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: February 25, 2015 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $40.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: nice images
Cons: AF lets it down
Sharpness: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: k50 and Q7   

Only had this a few days now but apart from AF hunting is a great value bit of glass, I have the silver version

Edit.After owning it for a while now its a KEEPer, perfect for the Q7.Used on a dslr its frustrating 80/200mm its fine,above 200mm the hunting and noise of the motor is a pain.Consequently it lives in the Q kit.
   
Forum Member

Registered: November, 2013
Location: Queensland, Australia
Posts: 74
Lens Review Date: December 16, 2014 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $100.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Focal length, lightweight, cheap
Cons: AF not the best
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 7    Autofocus: 6    Handling: 7    Value: 9    Camera Used: Kr   

For a $100 this is quite a decent lens to have in your bag. Much of the earlier reviews say this lens is much underrated and I am inclined to agree with this. It's noisy as hell, but if you can cope with that, then it's also a fun lens to have a crack at some long telephoto work.

Again, stopping down to F8 seems to improve things somewhat. I have the groovy silver version and although I've just got this lens recently, the resuits I get I am more than happy with

   
Pentaxian

Registered: November, 2014
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 1,416

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: November 11, 2014 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $140.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: lightweight, good value,
Cons: autofocus, zoom creep
Sharpness: 7    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 7    Autofocus: 6    Handling: 7    Value: 8    Camera Used: K30   

Purchased the lens for more reach to shoot birds, animals.

It is very compact at 80mm, which is nice for storage. However, that mean it extends a lot at 320mm. It experiences lens creep especially when pointed straight down, which might be a negative for some people. Autofocus takes some time to go from one end of the ring to the other end, rather noisy. But that is to be expected of screw drives motors!

For good results, I usually stop down to around f/8. Sometimes the smaller aperture can make a significant impact on haze in adverse lighting.

For it's price, it is an excellent lens. Here are some example pictures!
https://500px.com/photo/107454153/landing-snow-goose-by-ncarr
https://500px.com/photo/100567237/wading-blue-by-ncarr
https://500px.com/photo/100571333/skimming-skimmer-by-ncarr (Heavily Cropped)

Also, I have the silver version, so no build quality problems or whatever else that is experienced by the black versions.

EDIT: lowered the value from 10 to 8 because of the ridiculously low price of the HD DA 55-300 f/4-5.8!
   
Senior Member

Registered: July, 2013
Posts: 152
Lens Review Date: September 11, 2014 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: N/A | Rating: 9 

 
Pros:
Cons:
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 7    Handling: 9    Value: 10    Camera Used: Canon 60D   

I bought this plstic-body lens last October on ebay for 14.--$ and I simply love it. It's a lightweight lens with adequate focus and zoom action-range, and it is a very cooperative fully manual all-around companion.

Just to be on the spite side, Took it off my Pentax camera (I have two), and I bought a PK to EOS adapter, to see how it would register on my Canon, and here are three results:


.

.
   
Veteran Member

Registered: November, 2010
Location: New Berlin, WI
Posts: 519
Lens Review Date: May 17, 2014 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $80.00 | Rating: 7 

 
Pros: inexpensive, flexible, fast AF
Cons: Not great IQ
Sharpness: 7    Aberrations: 7    Bokeh: 7    Autofocus: 8    Handling: 8    Value: 8    Camera Used: K-x   

Well, this lens works. It offers "okay" image quality. I did buy this lens when I started photography. If you are on a very tight budget, buy it and have some fun with it outside on a bright day. If you can throw an extra $100 definitely buy a F70-210 instead, it offers much better IQ, much better.
   
New Member

Registered: January, 2014
Posts: 4

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: January 21, 2014 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $140.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Cheap
Cons: Bit soft at maximum zoom, bad manual focus
Sharpness: 7    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 9    Autofocus: 9    Handling: 8    Value: 10    Camera Used: Pentax K-r   

I bought this as a cheap lens to shoot some of my cricket action. Image sharpness at maximum zoom is acceptable and pretty good at lower zoom levels. Haven't have a problem with auto focus, though the manual focus ring fells like thin plastic which it is.
Bottom line is, I always keep this lens in my kit bag due to the large zoom range and acceptable results.
Here are some shots taken with this lens at 320mm;


at 80mm;


The originals and few more examples at various zoom ranges can be found at http://www.flickr.com/photos/kosalabandara/sets/72157640006349435/
   
Forum Member

Registered: September, 2013
Posts: 62
Lens Review Date: December 26, 2013 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $90.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: long at crop (EFL 120-480), plastic but robust, usefull
Cons: slow, but price... needed round lens hood.
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 8    Autofocus: 8    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: K-30, K-100   

from the "100-300" zooms this lens is a best, I think.
it is 80-320, little wider, little longer, F/5.6...
if You have FA 35-80/3.5-5.6 it will be consistent not expensive (budget) set at FF, for crop possible to use "kit" 18-55 if wide angle is needed.
as I say before - not expensive (F/5.6)
good AF, good-filling touch.
compact enough, when retarded...

real cons only round hood is needed, and not to much easy to obtain one deep enough, but I am using short one (20mm) - it is Ok.
for using as long telephoto zoom time-to-time, some birding or something else is good, very good.
   
Loyal Site Supporter

Registered: July, 2010
Location: Ohio
Posts: 1,379
Lens Review Date: December 9, 2013 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $50.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Reach, sharp, color, price
Cons: Size, build quality
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 8    Autofocus: 7    Handling: 7    Value: 10    Camera Used: PZ-1P and K30   

This is not the best of lens but it is good for it's price, especially in today's market. The optics are good, not great, and handling / build quality could be better. I was looking for a longer focal length to play around wit and this lens fell into my lap. In my opinion, it's not an every day lens. It doesn't measure up to other lenses I own but it's a fun lense to play around with, especially if you're looking for a longer focal length. If you find one cheap, buy it. You have nothing to lose and you will likely be pleasantly surprised by it's results.


[/url]
   
Junior Member

Registered: August, 2012
Posts: 48
Lens Review Date: April 7, 2013 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: N/A | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Inexpensive, reasonably good optics
Cons: Not very impressive build quality
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 8    Autofocus: 6    Handling: 8    Value: 9    Camera Used: *ist DL, K-01, PZ 10   

This was a consumer zoom in the film days and the build quality reflects this. That said, my copy has no mechanical problems despite its age so the construction can't be all that bad. Optically it is also better than one would expect, not bad at all. A fairly useful lens with a good range. Autofocus is not terribly impressive but that is not a big problem.
Add Review of SMC Pentax-FA 80-320mm F4.5-5.6



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