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Pentax Lens Review Database » Film Era Pentax K-Mount Lenses » M Prime Lenses
SMC Pentax-M 50mm F1.7 Review RSS Feed

SMC Pentax-M 50mm F1.7

Reviews Views Date of last review
245 902,794 Tue February 28, 2023
Recommended By Average Price Average User Rating
99% of reviewers $40.77 9.34
SMC Pentax-M 50mm F1.7

SMC Pentax-M 50mm F1.7
SMC Pentax-M 50mm F1.7

The SMC Pentax-M 50mm F1.7 is a common standard lens that shipped with many early Pentax bodies.

SMC Pentax-M 50mm F1.7
©, sharable with attribution
Image Format
Full-frame / 35mm film
Lens Mount
Pentax K
Aperture Ring
Yes (no A setting)
Automatic, 6 blades
6 elements, 5 groups
Mount Variant
Check camera compatibility
Max. Aperture
Min. Aperture
Min. Focus
45 cm
Max. Magnification
Filter Size
49 mm
Internal Focus
Field of View (Diag. / Horiz.)

APS-C: 32 ° / 27 °
Full frame: 47 ° / 40 °
Various types
Dedicated hard case
Lens Cap
Plastic clip-on
Weather Sealing
Other Features
Diam x Length
63 x 31 mm
185 g
Production Years
1977 to 1984
Engraved Name
smc PENTAX-M 1:1.7 50mm
Product Code
User reviews
Lens was sold without hood. Several hoods will fit like PH-S49 (50mm) and screw-in type metal and folding rubber hoods
Manual FocusAperture RingFull-Frame SupportDiscontinued
Price History:

Add Review of SMC Pentax-M 50mm F1.7
Sort Reviews by: Date | Author | Rating | Recommendation | Likes (Descending) Showing Reviews 1-15 of 245
New Member

Registered: January, 2023
Posts: 1
Review Date: February 28, 2023 Not Recommended | Price: $100.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Nitidez, colores, construcción
Cons: ninguno
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 9    Value: 9    Camera Used: sony A7 III   

Buen dia, Doy mi opinion basandome en la filmacion, Uso este lente con un adaptador a mi Sony a7 III, lo cual funciona excelente,. La calidad de imagen tanto interior como exterior es perfecta. Rapido enfoque (manual obviamente) hacen uno de mis mejores 50 mm. No le doy 10 por gusto por que me gusta mas el vintage como el carl zeiss 50 1.8 pancolar, Pero es un 10. NO dude de comprarlo mas si va a ser su unico 50 mm.

New Member

Registered: February, 2023
Posts: 4
Review Date: February 8, 2023 Recommended | Rating: 10 

Pros: Extreme sharpness at f/2, good quality
Cons: Using it on a digital camera is unhandy (not a real con though)
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 8    Value: 10    Camera Used: Pentax K-70   

An excellent nifty fifty, borrowed from my father's old kit with a Pentax ME Super.

Focusing is a bit challenging due the lack of split diopter on the focusing screen on modern cameras, and Catch-in Focus only in spot mode isn't too helpful, but if you take the right time with it, it's all fun and games.

Compared with the old thin cameras, this lens is very small mounted on my K-70, and my big hands didn't help too.

But for a budget lens, giving back this quality, it's all worth it, and a fun training on manual focusing and apertures.
New Member

Registered: September, 2022
Posts: 23

4 users found this helpful
Review Date: October 30, 2022 Recommended | Price: $33.00 | Rating: N/A 

Camera Used: K-70   

I love this lens.

Admittedly I don't have a collection of high quality lenses to compare with, and I'm not a pixel peeper striving for technical perfection. But it feels great, is a joy to handle and shoot with and is responsible for my best pictures. I paid ~$33 which is just amazing value imo.

There are two negatives for me:

- Wider than f2.8 it is very very soft. It still takes great images, but the combination of very shallow depth of field and very soft images won't get you tack sharp anything. From 2.8 it gets dramatically sharper.

- on APS-C it is a usually either a bit too long or short for my taste. That's not the fault of the lens obviously, but 50mm usually requires me to step back to fit the image in the frame, and it's not really long enough when I want a bit of tele (my 135mm on the other hand feels way too long for APS-C)
New Member

Registered: May, 2021
Posts: 15

2 users found this helpful
Review Date: October 27, 2022 Recommended | Price: $20.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Build quality, sharpness, color and contrast
Cons: Bokeh isn't spectacular
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 7    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: Sony A7III   

So far I've mainly used Takumar lenses, and this is my first 50mm Pentax-M lens. I have to say I'm pleasantly surprised!

Als always with Pentax lenses the build quality is superb. Focus is smooth as butter and even wide open this thing is really sharp. Stop it down a bit and around f8 it's really tack sharp! I also love the way it renders colors. It really beautiful.

In this video I did a test with this lens on a Sony A7iii
Loyal Site Supporter

Registered: February, 2019
Location: Florida
Posts: 118

6 users found this helpful
Review Date: June 25, 2022 Recommended | Rating: 10 

Pros: Timeless Quality
Cons: None
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 9    Value: 10    Camera Used: Ricoh XR-1, Ricoh XR-2S, Pentax K2, Pentax K-50, Pentax K-1 II   

I'm posting this review as a tribute to my go-to lens.

Purchased brand new in 1982.

Yes, 40 years ago.

Every bit as smooth as day one. Glass clean and clear. Aperture as snappy as ever. Not a bit of slop or play.

And to top things off, it just looks beautiful on the K-1 II. Great performance on film, digital and video.

The Swiss-Army Knife of lenses!
New Member

Registered: March, 2022
Posts: 6

1 user found this helpful
Review Date: March 23, 2022 Recommended | Rating: 10 

Pros: Very nice little prime
Cons: None
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 10    Camera Used: LX   

Fantastic prime, usually well priced and works outstandingly well on adapted to my Sony cameras.
New Member

Registered: April, 2021
Posts: 12

5 users found this helpful
Review Date: November 24, 2021 Recommended | Price: $25.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Sharp, affordable, and well built
Cons: No aperture information on files
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: K-70   

A very fun lens, for the price you can't ask for anything more! The build screams quality and it produces respectable photos. If you are considering an M series lens, I highly recommend it (whatever that's worth).

Recently I have been playing with CIF and although I don't have it mastered, the results are pleasing and I find it does help improve the experience of shooting with the lens.

Example photos (edited in LR):

New Member

Registered: August, 2017
Location: Ronneburg
Posts: 1
Review Date: August 5, 2021 Recommended | Price: $50.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: built like a tank, fast lens
Cons: none for me
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: Z-1, K-3, K 200 D   

Pentax M SMC 50 f1.7 is a great value for the money. It is small, light, and there are lot of them around making the price reasonable. Slightly softer at f1.7 it reaches very good figures from 2.8.
New Member

Registered: July, 2021
Posts: 1

2 users found this helpful
Review Date: August 1, 2021 Recommended | Price: $50.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Compact, sharp, widely available, colors, build
Cons: Busy bokeh sometimes
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 7    Handling: 9    Value: 9    Camera Used: Pentax MX, Sony A6500   

I don't feel as though this is a super standout lens in any particular way, but an overall very good performer. The main area it beats my other lenses is in being very light and compact. I have two copies, so it's also a great lens to take along on a bike ride or some such venue where I'm bumping it around, because it still makes fantastic pictures but I won't be heartbroken if I hurt it.

Handling is fantastic, both of mine have smooth focus and a nice tactile aperture ring. Sharpness is about what you'd expect from a nifty fifty of this age and speed. Very usable especially a click or two down from wide open. Colors are great, and what you'd expect from Pentax SMC. I find that it's usable for portraits wide open if you're in low light. If you have a lot of light, then high contrast edges get blown out by aberrations/lack of sharpness. In bright light situations (which I try to avoid anyway) it becomes quite usable by f4 or 5.6.

The only complaint I really have about this lens is that the bokeh is not my favorite with the wrong combination of factors. In my experience that is usually varying types and shades of foliage as the background. Close up for flowers or the like it's less noticeable, but for larger subjects where you're taking in more of the background it's something to keep in mind.

A fantastic entry point to the world of Pentax lenses. It was for me, and I still have my first one.

Registered: February, 2011
Location: Southern Finland
Posts: 657
Review Date: April 18, 2021 Recommended | Rating: 9 

Pros: Sharp, compact, well built
Cons: (nothing, considering its origin and age)
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: K200D, K-5, K-1   

I think everything important has been said already in previous reviews. This lens is very compact and optically sharp. Built like a tank, as all M series lenses. Must be operated manually in digital cameras, but the green button helps a lot. That's how the film era lenses are - so this is no defect considering the time it was released originally. Focusing needs some practise, as the focus throw is quite short. A good performer for macro work with some accessories, like extension tubes, reverse ring or close-up lens.

To be honest, though, with digital bodies I'd rather use my SMC-F 1,7/50 than this - just because of the autofocus. Optically they are about the same - both very good.
New Member

Registered: September, 2020
Location: Derbyshire
Posts: 3
Review Date: October 17, 2020 Recommended | Rating: 6 

Pros: Sharp when stopped down, beautifully made
Cons: Unusable wide open / too small and fiddly / dim
Sharpness: 7    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 6    Handling: 4    Value: 7    Camera Used: MX/ME   

This lens is too small for me even though it is beautifully made. Handling is a real downer if you have large hands. Its takes 49mm filters which are usually quite cheap.

On the KX I have, focussing is not as easy as it should be - I need the 50mm A 1.4 to be able to focus properly. I can even focus better on the K 35mm 3.5 I have, and it's slower! Light gathering is not its forte.

One thing that is most disappointing about this lens is its performance wide open. My sample and others I have had are just not very good wide open. My 50mm AIS 1.8 is better in the centre as was the Zuiko 50mm 1.8 I once had. Sure, the 50mm 1.4's have some veiling flare but this 50mm 1.7 has no character used wide open at all.

I have to say that I am not a big fan of anything Pentax with an 'M' in it. Too small, and too many compromises (although the M 135mm 3.5 is a very nice lens and capable of excellent results and handles nicely).

If you have large hands, stick with the K 55mm or an A 50mm or go for a K or A 50mm 1.4 instead. The Pentax 50mm 1.4s - right up to the FA - are all very underrated.

BTW - all my reviews are based on film use.
Forum Member

Registered: June, 2014
Posts: 58

2 users found this helpful
Review Date: October 14, 2020 Recommended | Rating: 9 

Pros: sharp, small, light, affordable
Cons: no "A" setting
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 7    Bokeh: 7    Handling: 9    Value: 10    Camera Used: Pentax ME Super, Samsung NX30   

I bought this lens with a camera and can't tell its exact price. It is sharp in the centre even wide open, although with some purple fringing. The corners become properly sharp by F8 – similar to Helios 44 but with much better contrast. I use it on my older film cameras and Samsung mirrorless through an adapter. Lack of the "A" setting limits its usability on Pentax DSLRs.

Very nice little lens, highly recommended!

Pentax ME Super, Kodak Portra 160

Pentax ME Super, Kodak Ultramax 400
New Member

Registered: October, 2020
Posts: 4
Review Date: October 10, 2020 Recommended | Price: $35.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Sharpness Bokeh Size
Cons: None
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 9    Value: 10    Camera Used: K-01   

Got a near mint copy of this for the equivalent of $35US. All I can say is the images it produces are easily 4 to 5 times the price I paid for it.

New Member

Registered: June, 2020
Posts: 2
Review Date: June 25, 2020 Recommended | Price: $20.00 | Rating: 6 

Pros: Sharp wide open, excellent contrast and colors, compact
Cons: Bokeh
Sharpness: 6    Aberrations: 7    Bokeh: 4    Handling: 7    Value: 9    Camera Used: EOS 60D   

Paid it 20 USD (imported it from Japan). In mint condition.
Excellent sharpness and colors from f2. Contrast is excellent. Easier to focus and less CA than 50/1.4 version.
Bokeh is only issue.

I think that this is the best buy regarding 50mm lenses. Optically better than any Helios or Pentacon 50mm lens, and costs the same, or less.

A few pictures using macro tubes.

Veteran Member

Registered: September, 2017
Location: Medellín
Posts: 1,314
Review Date: December 23, 2019 Recommended | Price: $80.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Sharp, small, nice handling.
Cons: Six aperture blades.
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: Film cameras, K-5   

I got one to see what all the hype was about. It's that good!
Can't go wrong with this one. I specially like the handling. If it had seven or eight aperture blades it would be the perfect fast fifty.
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