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SMC Pentax 28mm F3.5

Reviews Views Date of last review
56 217,793 Tue February 11, 2020
Recommended By Average Price Average User Rating
100% of reviewers $100.30 9.41
SMC Pentax 28mm F3.5

SMC Pentax 28mm F3.5
SMC Pentax 28mm F3.5

The SMC Pentax 28mm F3.5 is the slower of the two K-series 28mm wide-angle lenses.

SMC Pentax 28mm F3.5
©, sharable with attribution
Image Format
Full-frame / 35mm film
Lens Mount
Pentax K
Aperture Ring
Yes (no A setting)
Automatic, 5 blades
8 elements, 7 groups
Mount Variant
Check camera compatibility
Max. Aperture
Min. Aperture
Min. Focus
30 cm
Max. Magnification
Filter Size
52 mm
Internal Focus
Field of View (Diag. / Horiz.)

APS-C: 55 ° / 46 °
Full frame: 75 ° / 65 °
PH-S52 (24mm)
Dedicated hard case
Lens Cap
Plastic clip-on
Weather Sealing
Other Features
Diam x Length
63 x 47 mm
261 g
Production Years
1976 to 1977
Engraved Name
smc PENTAX 1:3.5/28
Product Code
User reviews
Manual FocusAperture RingFull-Frame SupportDiscontinued
Price History:

Add Review of SMC Pentax 28mm F3.5
Sort Reviews by: Date | Author | Rating | Recommendation | Likes (Descending) Showing Reviews 31-45 of 56
New Member

Registered: March, 2012
Location: Berlin
Posts: 9
Lens Review Date: May 27, 2013 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $120.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Sharp. Really sharp.
Cons: f3.5
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 6    Handling: 10    Value: 9    Camera Used: Canon 5d mkIII   

Haven't had this long, but it only took a quick look at the first few shots to see that this is one sharp, sharp lens. I did a quick compare with my other 28s. It's much sharper than my Tak 28s (I have the 58mm filter thread Super Tak, and the last version S-M-C Tak) and easily outperforms my SMC-A 28 2.8 especially at the corners.

Colours are great too, build quality and handling fantastic. This is a serious lens.

Site Supporter

Registered: July, 2012
Posts: 928

2 users found this helpful
Lens Review Date: April 13, 2013 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $125.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Vivid images and distinctive colors
Cons: None
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: K20D   

After many years of trying to find the perfect “walk-around” prime lens, I purchased and fell in love with the K28 f3.5. It’s a lens I’d rate ahead of my other 24mm to 40mm lenses, partly because of the focal length, but mostly because of performance. The K28mm is bigger than some lenses at these focal lengths, but it’s not overly large or heavy, and it’s got a satisfyingly solid feel from a golden Pentax era.

The K28mm is sharp at all stops and distances, but its great strength is that it reproduces vivid and distinctive colors. One way to describe its performance is to look at post-production processing versus the M28f2.8 (to take a popular alternative). If you under or over expose images with the K28mm, you can often adjust the image quite a lot without losing resolution. Too many images from my M28mm seem to quickly “fall apart” into fuzziness during heavy post production.

I actually use it for product shots as well as wider/infinity shots; although one needs to be careful of the bokeh which is not as subtle as some 50mm’s.

This 2012 digital holiday snap I hope demonstrates the “filmy/technicolor” feel the lens can produce, described in other reviews. On the original file, it’s extremely impressive how far one can zoom in on the calamari while retaining sharpness - if pixel peeping (or calamari) is your thing. For landscape shots I trust it more than my 35mm limited.

Another thumbs up for a great and highly recommended lens.

New Member

Registered: October, 2012
Location: Vancouver
Posts: 2
Lens Review Date: March 9, 2013 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $60.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Optical Quality, Build Quality
Cons: none
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: K-5   

Incredible glass, a resolution king! Simply one of the greats!

New Member

Registered: March, 2012
Posts: 22
Lens Review Date: February 10, 2013 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $167.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Colours, sharpness, crispness, precision, rendition
Cons: none
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: Pentax K-5   

I got one in a mint state a real beauty! Pity that this lens has become rarity, it would be good if Pentax could recycle it in future for Pentax FF.
I consider myself fortunate to have this lens and Zeiss Distagon 28mm f2.8 as well, so I can tell you this(Pentax) lens is really a pro league lens and among best 28mm legacy lenses ever. Mechanically superb, even better than Contax Zeiss lenses and I can compare it only with Schneider-Kreuznach lens that I have, which is made to last forever. I love manual focus lenses so I got Katzeye split prism with Optibrite and Pentax magnifier eyecup O-ME53 so It's much easer to focus and I have back that great feeling a had with the analogue camera.
I love colours, precision, crispness, contrast and sharpness that I get from this lens. So I can highly recommend this lens, on APS-C sensors is very usable for almost everything. I'm using it a lot for panorama's stitch, very, very little distortions. In the end, I compare it with a great samurai warrior, looks like one and it's precise and efficient like one
Site Supporter

Registered: November, 2010
Location: California
Posts: 2,223
Lens Review Date: June 5, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $126.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Perfect IQ, sharp, sharp, sharp, and fast, a powerful lens
Cons: None so far. It is so easy to focus that AF is not missed

I got this lens after reading the reviews here and after realizing that my Pentax M 28mm f3.5 was not the same as the Pentax 28mm f3.5 (Although it is almost there!). Yes, this lens is everything they wrote here, a wonderful IQ and sharp lens. I will be posting photos taken with it later.

Here are some of the photos taken with this gem:

Berry by Palenquero, on Flickr

Bark by Palenquero, on Flickr

Playground by Palenquero, on Flickr

Bridge by Palenquero, on Flickr

Fountain in HDR by Palenquero, on Flickr

Bushes by Palenquero, on Flickr

Flower set by Palenquero, on Flickr

Fuente by Palenquero, on Flickr
Lens Review Date: June 4, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $135.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Very harmonic behaviour
Cons: Not quite the lens for corner to corner sharpness
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 9    Handling: 10    Value: 9   

This lens has quite a harmonic behaviour, with good central sharpness that degrades very gradually towards the borders and corners, low CAs and relatively low distortion. However, it does never reach exceptional levels of sharpness around borders and corners, even stopped down (not that it's a bad lens either for relatively even sharpness across the frame).

It's built exceptionally well and has a wonderfully smooth manual focus action.

Compared to the 'plastic fantastic' DA 35mm f2.4, it's less sharp away from the centre, even stopped down, but also seems to display smaller amounts of colour aberrations (Lightroom does a very good job of automatically correcting the DA's aberrations, though).

From memory, the one thing that is quite good when compared to other 28s that I've owned is that it seems to have quite low field curvature in the close to mid range. The mighty C/Y Distagon 28mm, that I owned at some point, suffered a lot more from this, although it was better than the Pentax stopped down and focused far away. The one 28mm that I regret selling, that was astonishingly rounded, is the E55 Leica Elmarit R 28mm - better than the Pentax and the Zeiss in every respect...

Anyway, to make a long review short, if you're looking for a good, solid wide-normal and do not care about speed and immaculate corner to corner sharpness, do try this lens, as it's quite good; but if you're looking for a landscape lens that squeezes that last drop of sharpness into the very corners stopped down to f5.6/8, then look elsewhere, as there are better options out there.
Veteran Member

Registered: April, 2010
Location: Adelaide, South Australia
Posts: 805
Lens Review Date: May 18, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $110.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Very sharp, no CA, very high resolving power, easy to focus
Cons: None
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 10    Value: 10   

IMO one of the finest lenses Pentax EVER made.
A joy to use.
Easy to focus, objects just spring into focus.
Sharp from corner to corner at F3.5.
Beautiful contrasty images, very natural colours, and good flare resistance, but I still recommend using a lens hood outdoors in bright sunlight.

I have too many lenses, but this would be last on my list to sell.
Perfect for street shots.

Cheers from Jack.
Lens Review Date: January 14, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $120.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Fast (and bright finder image), sharp, good flare resistance, build quality
Cons: none

For me this lens is a real 10 !!!!!!!! Focus snap´s in so easy and even portraits in dimmed envirenment are almost all perfect sharp.

Registered: February, 2010
Location: Eureka, CA
Posts: 4,158

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: December 10, 2010 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $122.50 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Build quality, sharpness, color rendition
Cons: None that are reasonable
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 10    Value: 10   

Purchased this lens to fill the gap between my DA 12-24 and an A 35-105 in my landscape kit. Generally I prefer zooms for landscape work, but this lens has worked so well for me that I find myself using it far more than I ever expected. It is sharper than my A 35-105 at all focal lengths and sharper than my DA 12-24 is at 24mm (though not sharper than that lens at 12-16mm). Stopped down to f8 (where most of my photos are taken with it), it has excellent corner to corner sharpness. Color rendition is quite a bit different from either the A 35-105 or the DA 12-24 (or any other DA lens that I'm familiar with). It produces rich purples, magentas, and greens on my K200D: it's almost like an old technicolor look, which is very striking, and sometimes preferred. (Of course, the color can be changed in post through WB adjustments if one shoots raw.)

Bokeh on this lens is surprisingly good for an f3.5 wide angle lens. Of course, for those looking to isolate a subject with narrow DOF, an f2 28 would work better. This lens is best used for landscape photography, where it shines. It's capable of producing images with great clarity and pop. With it's excellent, almost 3-D rendering characteristics, it could be seen as a kind of poor man's FA 31.

Site Supporter

Registered: June, 2008
Location: Florida Hill Country
Posts: 17,297

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: June 22, 2010 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $60.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Build quality and relative size

This is an excellent 28mm lens, and it is possibly the best manual focus 28mm k-mount lens Pentax ever made. Unlike, some people suggested, this lens has nothing to do with the Pentax S-M-C Tak which had 7 elements in 7 groups. This lens was has 8 elements in 7 groups which incidentally is the same as the S-M-C Tak 35mm f2 lens.
Veteran Member

Registered: April, 2007
Location: Uppsala, Sweden
Posts: 576
Lens Review Date: April 27, 2010 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $50.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Sharpness, contrast, colour, no distortion, flare resistance.
Cons: Only f/3.5 if speed is an issue.
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 10    Value: 9   

I have only used this lens on film.

A true K series gem. It is well built, has very little distortions, good colour and contrast. And it is sharp! From 3.5 and only gets sharper stopped down.

The bokeh is also very nice and smooth. However, being a f/3.5 lens you don't that much of it.

I have yet to see any flare in photos with this lens, and I don't even have a lens hood for it!

I can honestly not think of anything negative to say about it, I cannot give it a 10 because that is reserved for lenses that shouldn't even exist, but this one is very close.

The price to performance ratio is of the chart IMO.
Veteran Member

Registered: March, 2009
Location: Salt Lake City, UT
Posts: 509
Lens Review Date: March 9, 2010 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: N/A | Rating: 9 

Pros: Sharp, contrasty, great color
Cons: Bigger

As typical K series lens, it is very well made. Slightly longer and heavier than the M version. Looks fine on K10D.

It produces high resolution and contrasty images from f3.5, which is similar to the renowned K35 f3.5. Just a fantastic piece of history which is still very relevant today.

Due to the small aperture, its use is largely limited to out door during day light. Would highly recommend in a heart beat.

EDIT: Compared with my DA 17-70mm at around 28mm f8. This old lens beat the DA hands down. More contrasty picture and higher corner to corner resolution. However, it is not nearly as convenient.
Veteran Member

Registered: October, 2008
Location: Sweden
Posts: 359
Lens Review Date: January 18, 2010 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: N/A | Rating: 9 

Pros: Sharp, great colors and rendering, nice bokeh for a 28mm

No question, this is a great lens. It's sharp enough wide open (F3.5), but if you stop down to F4 (that's just a half stop!) the lens sharpens up to a very very good level. At F5.6 and beyond it's really RAZOR sharp.

It has a nice bokeh for a 28mm lens and the build quality is excellent.

Highly recommended!
Senior Member

Registered: April, 2008
Location: West Coast - USA
Posts: 202
Lens Review Date: December 12, 2009 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $90.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Well built, lack of distortion, sharpness, FOV
Cons: Speed

I would give the lens an 8.5 to be exact. A somewhat rare lens from the low-production early K-series, it made a compact distortion-controlled landscape lens on 35mm, while on APS-C I'd describe it more as a 'rugged' (yes, by today's standard) walkaround - in build and purpose respectively.

The lens has that great dampened-smooth MF feel and the focus ring to back it up (stiff leather with all metal underneath) - there isn't a hint of plastic here. The lens gives a very crisp distortion-free 43mm equivalent FOV on an APS-C camera. It is reasonably sharp wide open - but is clearly made to reach a peak nearer 'landscape' apertures. The only obvious gripe is speed - but the lens is surprisingly capable at f3.5 - and handles close subjects quite well for a 'wide' lens.

Is it worth the ~$100 it is going for here in late 2009? As an alternative to a kit lens - or simply a step into MF, I certainly think so.

My slowly updating 'gallery' with this lens can be found here:

Veteran Member

Registered: May, 2009
Location: Vancouver, B.C.
Posts: 6,513
Lens Review Date: November 29, 2009 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: N/A | Rating: 10 

Pros: sharp, metal build, contrast, bokeh, resolution
Cons: f3.5

was about to purchase a Vivitar 28/2.8 MC CF lens when this version showed up at my door. gave it a spin and the previous reviews are spot on accurate. glad I did the wait. the lens is incredibly sharp and contrasty but gives you enough OOF blur and smooth bokeh for portraiture use. for it's size on an APS-C sensor, this lens is perfect as a walk-around lens. it's flexible as a wide lens as well. for sure this lens rule the 28mm department. if I were to say, this lens and the K30/2.8 equalizes the FA31 in their set constant aperture. wish the K28mm was atleast f2.8. though.

btw, this is one of the rarest and hard to find K version. I'm sure you'll find lots of the M version and latter and also their more faster counterparts, but this one is the best of them all.
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