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SMC Pentax 35mm F3.5

Reviews Views Date of last review
36 159,263 Sat March 7, 2020
Recommended By Average Price Average User Rating
97% of reviewers $113.19 9.49
SMC Pentax 35mm F3.5

SMC Pentax 35mm F3.5
SMC Pentax 35mm F3.5

The SMC Pentax 35mm F3.5 is the slower and smaller version of the two K series 35mm lenses. The optical design goes back to that of the Auto-Takumar from 1959!

SMC Pentax 35mm F3.5
©, sharable with attribution
Image Format
Full-frame / 35mm film
Lens Mount
Pentax K
Aperture Ring
Yes (no A setting)
Automatic, 5 blades
5 elements, 4 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: 45 ° / 38 °
Full frame: 63 ° / 54 °
PH-S52 (24mm)
Dedicated hard case
Lens Cap
Plastic clip-on
Weather Sealing
Other Features
Diam x Length
63 x 36 mm
161 g
Production Years
1975 to 1977
Engraved Name
SMC PENTAX 1:3.5/35
Product Code
User reviews
Manual FocusAperture RingFull-Frame SupportDiscontinued
Price History:

Add Review of SMC Pentax 35mm F3.5
Sort Reviews by: Date | Author | Rating | Recommendation | Likes (Descending) Showing Reviews 1-15 of 36
New Member

Registered: June, 2018
Posts: 2
Lens Review Date: March 7, 2020 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $100.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: Very small, excellent contrast and colors, good flare control, great central sharpness
Cons: Middling mid-frame sharpness and low corner/edge sharpness
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 10    Value: 7    Camera Used: MX, X-T3   

This lens is for someone who values a good performing lens that is small and lightweight. With that said this lens was very good overall. Wide open it's already very contrasty and central sharpness is REALLY high (NO spherical aberration!), but mid-frame and edge sharpness aren't quite there. Even when stopping down to f/5.6 the mid-frame and edge sharpness don't catch up to the center, there's a considerable gap between the two and it's only when you get to f/8 when it starts to even out. This seems to be caused by a combination of field curvature and high coma aberration. I also noticed a small to moderate amount of chromatic aberrations at all apertures. Given the reviews and the f/3.5 aperture I was hoping for something that was in the league of the K 28mm 3.5. It has the contrast but not the overall resolution I'm afraid, but it has traits help make it desirable. High contrast, flare and ghost resistant, small and lightweight, it's a nice lens to behold and use that's for sure. It's recommended if you can get it for a good price.
New Member

Registered: January, 2019
Posts: 1

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: January 29, 2019 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $186.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Sharpness across multiple apertures
Cons: Wide Open, It's still not that fast
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 10    Value: 9    Camera Used: K50   

Here are some sample pics I've taken with this lens:

I find this lens to reach a level of sharpness at f8 and f11 that I haven't seen from any other lens I've handled (which is admittedly only a handful). At f5.6 it's still equivalent or better to the other prime lenses that I own at their sharpest apertures. At F4 or below, the sharpness drops off on the edges slightly.

After I had purchased this lens, I came across a serious of sharpness tests conducted for a number of the older film era lenses. This one is among the best, not just at the center but across the entire periphery of the lens. The results of the test match my experience:

Aside from sharpness, the color rendition is also quite nice.

I shoot on an ASP-C camera, so the 35mm focal length converts to roughly 50mm which is nice as a general purpose walk-around shooter. It also weighs only ~160g and is the smallest lens that I own, so again, a perfect prime for just walking around and snapping shots in whether you are Full Frame or APS-C

The build quality is excellent. Metal construction, even though the lens is likely 40 years old at least, the focus and aperture rings still turn quite smoothly. Obviously this will depend on what particular copy you get, but this is definitely a plus as compared to the more modern plastic body lenses.

Finally, what is also great about this lens is that it can be had for around $100 at the time of this writing. Bang for the buck, I can't think of any other lens that offers so much value. I have the M 50mm/f1.4 lens, which is also a cheap, great value lens but as a point of comparison it's sharpness only gets close to the K 35mm/f3.5 at around f8. Otherwise the edges soften up quite a bit on the M 50mm/f1.4 as the aperture opens, and it's considered to be a good lens. Many of the other well ranked manual primes are really only superb at maybe one or two apertures, so keep this in mind when comparing options.

The only real con that is that the lens is not very fast. For night time shots, there are going to be some compromises such as longer exposures or higher iso.

If you are mostly a prime shooter, I think you will very much enjoy this lens.
New Member

Registered: September, 2016
Posts: 2
Lens Review Date: October 7, 2018 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $65.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Light, small, sharpness, colors
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 5    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: LX,K3,K2DMD,   

This little tank behaves as it is build for, and all in a wonderful matter
For its price you get a well made and exremly sharp lens, always to take with you,
because its so small and light f3,5 did not show smooth bokeh like the K35 f2,
but for landscapes and architecture it shines !
The colors are very pleasing too.
Highly recomended !
New Member

Registered: October, 2017
Posts: 1

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: May 27, 2018 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $160.00 | Rating: 7 

Pros: Center Sharpness, Build
Cons: Soft on edges and corners on FF....falls off fast!!
Sharpness: 7    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 7    Handling: 9    Value: 6    Camera Used: Sony A7Rii   

I've tested enough glass to know lens can vary copy to copy so I'm just talking about my copy: your mileage may vary. Used on a crop sensor this is a very sharp lens corner to corner. But on a FF the softness at all 4 edges is very apparent. I'm a big fan of Pentax glass so this one was a disappointment.
Senior Member

Registered: May, 2016
Location: Duluth, MN
Posts: 141

2 users found this helpful
Lens Review Date: March 15, 2018 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $150.00 | Rating: 7 

Pros: Sharp in center on K1
Cons: A little soft at edges on K1 (but not bad)
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 10    Value: 8    Camera Used: K1   

I do like the lens, but not enough to keep using it over my 31 and 43 limiteds, even though I really like the 35mm FOV. There is just a little bit too much glow and softness towards the edges, even at f8. Could easily be sample variation. My K 28 3.5 is better. Like many Pentax lenses, old and new, it is excellent in the middle 2/3's of the frame. The search continues...
New Member

Registered: February, 2018
Posts: 12

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: March 12, 2018 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $100.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: So sharp you'll cut yourself
Cons: The f3.5 thing is in the name...
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 6    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: K30   

Actually started out with this on film where I was able to compare to the Zeiss 35 f2 on the Contax G2. This one more than held its own.

To paraphrase Blackadder, the K 35 f3.5 is sharper than a sharp thing that got out of bed and decided to be especially sharp this morning. If you want to own a true classic, just buy one and work out the green button thing afterwards. Seriously, if you see one, just go ahead and snap it up, whether you're full frame or APS-C. it's that good.

The rest (did I mention it was sharp?) is as good as any of the first issue K Takumar-carryovers; built like a tank with metal throughout, super smooth handling.

I can't quite believe this myself, but you can evidently still buy this for less than a fifth of the price of a new 31 limited. Just checked on ebay. The world's gone mad. Take advantage!
amateur dirt farmer

Registered: December, 2014
Location: probably out in a field somewhere...
Posts: 19,034

4 users found this helpful
Lens Review Date: December 2, 2017 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $140.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: size, build quality, clarity, color rendition
Cons: slow aperture can hinder low-light shoots
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 9    Value: 9    Camera Used: K-3, K-50   

for November's Single In Challenge, I used my recently-purchased copy of the SMC 35mm f3.5 (aka K35/3.5) - I was told before I bought the lens that the lens has a sterling reputation and that I should enjoy it...

they were right - this thing drips with pixie dust...

the only negative thing I can think of for this lens is its relatively-slow maximum aperture of f3.5 - if you are OK with this, you'll love this lens; if you are a low-light fanatic, you're going to be frustrated unless you like bumping up the ISO...

fine, negativity out of the way, let's talk color - point this lens at reds, I was told... it loves red; it also loves blue and green and orange and yellow and brown... any color, the K35/3.5 loves it...

bokeh is not always smooth with the five-blades in the iris, but you'll see old-school penta-bokeh if you're less than wide open...

typical of K-series lenses, this one is built like a tank and is a joy to operate - smooth focus ring, snickety-goodness on the aperture ring, and well built all around...

and the pics:

library by Pepperberry Farm, on Flickr

rust by Pepperberry Farm, on Flickr

Christmas decorations... by Pepperberry Farm, on Flickr

sunset by Pepperberry Farm, on Flickr

and the rest of my album for this lens:

in short - no reason to not want a copy of this classic; slap it on and have a ball with it....
Site Supporter

Registered: December, 2014
Location: Colorado
Posts: 455
Lens Review Date: September 22, 2017 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $100.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Sharp, compact
Cons: None
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: K-1   

Best 35mm prime that I've ever had. There may be better 35mm lenses out there (Samyang 35/1.4 and Sigma 35/1.4) but you have to pay much more. Already very sharp wide open. Close 1 stop and this lens becomes sharper, corner-to-corner, on a full-frame K-1. I compared this lens to DA35/2.4. This lens is better at f3.5 than DA35/2.4 at f3.5. At f8 they become about equal.
Dark Underlord

Registered: January, 2014
Location: New Carlisle, IN
Posts: 1,475
Lens Review Date: April 11, 2017 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: N/A | Rating: 10 

Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 9    Value: 10    Camera Used: K-3   

This lens is of solid, quality build. Imaging is sharp and contrasty. This lens is worlds ahead of the M-35/2.8. Though 1/2 stop less-fast, bokeh is better at 3.5 than it's 2.8 cousin at 2.8. I bought this lens for film use, but tested first on my K-3. Now I don't want to take it off the K-3. Maybe I need a second.

This sample is literally the very first photo I took with this lens. I got it in the mail, put it on my K-3, and went outside. The sun was setting through some passing storm clouds, so light was "variable". I set the aperture to 3.5 and framed this statue on the porch railing. I focussed, hit the green button, and pressed the shutter. Perfection on the first try.
Forum Member

Registered: February, 2016
Location: Moab, Utah
Posts: 90
Lens Review Date: February 21, 2017 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $150.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Contrast, colors, microcontrast in that order
Cons: 5 bladed aperture
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: K1000, Sony A7 series   

This lens is superb, and in my opinion the best of the manual focus 35's from Pentax, possibly from anyone.

I compared it with several different 35mm's and this one had the most contrast, rendered the best colors. When I zoomed in, the microcontrast you would expect from having only 5 elements is there. Images have "punch" like the old Zeiss lenses. The image is very rich with fine detail, yet contrasty. Bokeh is actually nice when wide open. It's only when stopping down that it can become overly harsh. If I'm looking for bokeh, I'm wide open with extension tube anyway, so it's not an issue for me. This one is sharp right from wide open. I never need to think about stopping down for sharpness with this lens. Mine is the coated version. As typical, SMC makes flar not much of an issue, however on this 35 and as with any, it can happen and I have to shield it. Flare resistance seems better than most 35's as far as flare goes.

Build quality better than most a and some of my m series lenses. I prefer this over the 2.8's, m series, any pentax 35, this is the one. I also prefer it over several other brands that I compared it to. This lens is small. All these reasons make it my all arounder 35. Mine is pretty pristine, as it seems many are. Focusing is as smooth as day it left factory and clicks perfectly. I don't even mention build quality as a best thing about this lens because it's a given. Pentax K, M Tak series second to none on build quality.

This lens is a case of complex simplicity. I think it was a well thought out design from Pentax and a smart small lens.
Senior Member

Registered: November, 2011
Location: Chicago
Posts: 124
Lens Review Date: November 28, 2016 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $160.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: resolution, contrast, color rendering, build
Cons: na
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: Pentax K3   

After reading such rave reviews for this lens... and being a sucker for legendary K series glass, I finally tracked one down on ebay. It is a pretty amazing thing, grossly undervalued, and it weighs nothing. If this lens carried a Zeiss label, you could sell it for $500 easily.

Yes. It's that good.

What could be better? Well, the Bokeh isn't the best I've seen, and far from the worst. But on balance, there are a few Leica lenses out there which are priced well into the thousands, and they get the same comment from their owners.

The K 35 f/3.5 is all about the resolution, and it kills. Perfectly sharp wide open, with lush contrast. I shoot Black and White most of the time, and I'm a bit of a contrast whore. It had to be said.

New Member

Registered: July, 2015
Posts: 1
Lens Review Date: May 12, 2016 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $135.00 | Rating: N/A 

Pros: sharp, light, flare resistance
Cons: NA
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 10    Value: 10   

I agree, this is really a great lens.
I bought it in very good condition and I'm very, very happy with it.
Other good photographers already described how good it is.
I just wanted to add one example of how good his lens is wide open.

Long live Pentax!
New Member

Registered: January, 2014
Posts: 13
Lens Review Date: February 21, 2016 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: N/A | Rating: 9 

Pros: sharp, solid, color pallette
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 7    Bokeh: 7    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: K-30   

Woo-eee. I can see this lens starting a long, unhealthy obsession with the K series for me.

It's a great lens for a great price.

-- The color rendition of the lens is unique to the point of weird, but great. It loves blue. Overall WB might render slightly cool, but blue in particular is very saturated. Individual colors seem drawn out while retaining the distinction between slightly different shades.

-- Really sharp. The fastest aperture is slow-ish but that's the charm. It manages the "pop" you hear about... not so much with DOF but by transitions in sharpness in the scene.

-- does not like shooting too directly toward the sun. hazes out with too sharp a light. but it DOES generally handle backlit subjects well. I notice that it keeps very different values within a good contrast balance. in comparison, my DA 16-45 turns anything remotely backlit BLACK. but you can shoot that one right at the sun and get something nice, and preserve the scene.

Forum Member

Registered: April, 2014
Posts: 61
Lens Review Date: November 21, 2014 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: N/A | Rating: 10 

Pros: Build quality. Sharpness. Colour rendition.
Cons: None
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: Sony a7r   

This is an outstanding lens. On a par with the wonderful k28 f3.5.
Matches the Sony Zeiss fe 35 f2.8 in resolution and produces deeper and more vibrant colours.
There are no issues with flare, CA, or purple fringing.
I would highly recommend it to owners of the Sony a7r
New Member

Registered: August, 2014
Posts: 7

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: October 18, 2014 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $75.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Razor sharp, easy and fast to focus, great colour saturation, perfect for street photography
Cons: none in its category
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 7    Handling: 9    Value: 10    Camera Used: Pentax ME Super   

An incredibly sharp lens, with great micro contrast, wonderful colour rendition and deep saturation. The 35mm focal lenght makes it perfect for street photo.

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