Forgot Password
Pentax Camera Forums Home

Pentax Lens Review Database » Film Era Pentax K-Mount Lenses » K Zoom Lenses
SMC Pentax 85-210mm F4.5 Review RSS Feed

SMC Pentax 85-210mm F4.5

Reviews Views Date of last review
2 24,064 Sun October 30, 2011
Recommended By Average Price Average User Rating
50% of reviewers $69.50 6.00
SMC Pentax 85-210mm F4.5

SMC Pentax 85-210mm F4.5
SMC Pentax 85-210mm F4.5

This is the slower version of this zoom range K-series zoom.

SMC Pentax 85-210mm F4.5
©, sharable with attribution
Image Format
Full-frame / 35mm film
Lens Mount
Pentax K
Aperture Ring
Yes (no A setting)
Automatic, 6 blades
11 elements, 10 groups
Mount Variant
Check camera compatibility
Max. Aperture
Min. Aperture
Min. Focus
350 cm
Max. Magnification
Filter Size
58 mm
Internal Focus
Field of View (Diag. / Horiz.)

APS-C: 19-7.9 ° / 16-6.5 °
Full frame: 29-12 ° / 24-9.8 °
Dedicated hard case
Lens Cap
Plastic clip-on
Weather Sealing
Other Features
One-touch Zoom
Diam x Length
68 x 218 mm
729 g
Production Years
1975 to 1977
Engraved Name
SMC PENTAX ZOOM 1:4.5/85~210
Product Code
User reviews
Close focus distance is 190 cm with a dedicated close-up lens.
The focusing ring has a third distance scale for use with the close-up lens
Manual FocusAperture RingFull-Frame SupportDiscontinued
Price History:

Add Review of SMC Pentax 85-210mm F4.5
Sort Reviews by: Date | Author | Rating | Recommendation | Likes (Descending) Showing Reviews 1-2 of 2
Site Supporter

Registered: October, 2008
Location: Vancouver, Canada
Posts: 6,691

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: October 30, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $100.00 | Rating: 7 

Pros: Build, Focal range on film, constant aperture & one touch zoom design.
Cons: Length, speed and minimum focusing distance.
Camera Used: K Series film bodies (K1000, KM, KX, K2, K2DMD)   

The K85-210/4.5 is one of the original three Pentax K series zooms released in mid 1975. (The others being the K45-125/4 and the K135-600/6.7.) The 85-210/4.5 zoom design dates back to the screw-mount days and there was a Takumar version released in the early 1970’s.

Note: A close-up lens attachment was made available for this lens. It reduced the minimum focusing distance from 3.5 to 1.9 meters.

Not bad considering the age of this zooms design (1971) and that the Takumar version was the second zoom that Pentax ever released. The optics are very similar to the K series “budget” telephoto lenses (K135/3.5, K150/4 & K200/4). The minimum focusing distance is not very good (3.5 meters), so the close-up attachment helps narrow it down to 1.9 meters, this is still worse than most newer zooms that go down to 1.0 ~ 1.2 meters. It’s a pain having to screw in the close-up attachment to shoot from 1.9 ~ 3.5 meters and when you switch back to regular shooting having to take it off again. The close-up attachments optics are pretty good, but I’d use a prime for any portrait work. The K85-210/4.5 optical design is best suited for longer distance scenic shooting, where sharpness is less of an issue and you don’t have to bother with the close-up attachment.

Focal length:
On film 85mm-210mm is perfect and covers the portrait to medium telephoto range. On digital you loose the lower end of the close portrait range.

Superb K Series build, with a design also very similar to the K series “budget” telephoto lenses (K135/3.5, K150/4 & K200/4). These lenses feature a long, thin and fairly light design; it’s the physical length that’s terrible. The K85-210/4.5 is longer than any other Pentax zoom in this focal range and is up there with the super telephoto primes. This is not a “camera bag friendly” lens. The zoom features a one touch design which much better than the newer two touch type zooms. The filter thread is 58mm and the plastic clip-on hood is shared with the K135/2.5 and the K200/4 primes.

Better than some newer zooms but way slower than the primes in the 85-135mm focal range. It’s at least a constant aperture zoom, which I prefer. I shoot mostly 100 ISO film, so f4.5 is too slow for indoor/low light work and is best suited for outdoor daylight shooting.

This zoom shows it age and is way too big to travel with on a long distance trip. If you are looking for a versatile MF Pentax zoom in this focal range then get the A70-210/4. It’s better than the K85-210/4.5 in all respects, except for build and it's also much smaller.

Sample shot taken with the K85-210/4.5. Photo is a low resolution scan from an original negative. The second photo compares the size of the K85-210/4.5 to the K85-210/3.5 and the A70-210/4.

Camera: K2 Film: Kodak Portra ISO: 160 Focal Length: 210mm Aperture: f/8

Left to right K85-210/3.5, K85-210/4.5 & A70-210/4:

Forum Member

Registered: September, 2006
Location: Brisbane Australia
Posts: 64
Lens Review Date: March 28, 2009 I can recommend this lens: No | Price: $39.00 | Rating: 5 

Pros: resonable sharp wide open at 210mm, long focus throw and feel
Cons: At 250mm [10"] long it takes up a lot of room in the bag and the minimum focus distance is huge. purple fringing is bad, contrast is low wide open

This is a long heavy lens with bad purple fringing and contrast wide open where it is often used due to the slow F4.5.
the minimum focus distance is 3.5 metres but a dedicated close up lens is available with the new scale in white on the lens showing 1.9 to 3.5 metres

it seems reasonably sharp and the bokeh looks Ok

the focus throw is long making it easy to get exact focus and the zoom feel is nice and smooth
Add Review of SMC Pentax 85-210mm F4.5

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 12:16 PM. | See also:, 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?
Creating a FREE ACCOUNT takes under a minute, removes ads, and lets you post! [Dismiss]