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SMC Pentax-M 50mm F1.7 Review RSS Feed

SMC Pentax-M 50mm F1.7

Sharpness 
 9.5
Aberrations 
 8.9
Bokeh 
 9.1
Handling 
 9.4
Value 
 9.8
Reviews Views Date of last review
205 561,523 Wed May 3, 2017
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Recommended By Average Price Average User Rating
100% of reviewers $41.31 9.38
SMC Pentax-M 50mm F1.7

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

Description:
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
Image Format
Full-frame / 35mm film
Lens Mount
Pentax K
Aperture Ring
Yes (no A setting)
Diaphragm
Automatic, 6 blades
Optics
6 elements, 5 groups
Mount Variant
K
Max. Aperture
F1.7
Min. Aperture
F22
Focusing
Manual
Min. Focus
45 cm
Max. Magnification
0.15x
Filter Size
49 mm
Internal Focus
No
Field of View (Diag. / Horiz.)

APS-C: 32 ° / 27 °
Full frame: 47 ° / 40 °
Hood
Various types
Case
Dedicated hard case
Lens Cap
Plastic clip-on
Coating
SMC
Weather Sealing
No
Other Features
Diam x Length
63 x 31 mm
Weight
185 g
Production Years
1977 to 1984
Engraved Name
smc PENTAX-M 1:1.7 50mm
Product Code
20877
Notes
Lens was sold without hood. Several hoods will fit like PH-S49 (50mm) and screw-in type metal and folding rubber hoods
Features:
Manual FocusAperture RingFull-Frame SupportDiscontinued
Price History:



Add Review of SMC Pentax-M 50mm F1.7
Author:
Sort Reviews by: Date | Author | Rating | Recommendation | Likes (Descending) Showing Reviews 16-30 of 205
New Member

Registered: February, 2016
Location: lake constance
Posts: 1

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: March 1, 2016 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $50.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: sharpness on all apertures, coating, built quality
Cons: sorry, i didn`t find any
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: Sony A7   

The Pentax M 1,7/50mm is an ultra sharp "normal". even at wide open, it is sharper than the most standard lenses of the beginning 80`s and there were enough of them. Further there is no optical difference between my M 1,4/50mm and this lens, but the 1,7 is smarter and light weighted. It is ideal for using it with the Sony A7. I`m very compliant with trimming and I often enlarge details in my pics, so that I can replace a 85mm or even a 100mm on a short trip, so far I shoot with low sensibility.
All in all a well built allrounder - and its affordable. With the Sony A7, the powerful partner for short trips in stead of a zoom. Digital FF recommended.
   
Senior Member

Registered: June, 2011
Location: Texas
Posts: 243

5 users found this helpful
Lens Review Date: February 29, 2016 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: N/A | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Incredible clarity, color rendition, price, size
Cons: SOME (not much) CA, corner sharpness
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 7    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 9    Value: 10    Camera Used: Pentax K-5, Sony a7   

This is such an incredible lens. I have been a professional portrait photographer for going on 7 years now, and this was my first lens. This is still my primary lens, it has awesome rendering. Attatched are examples taken on the Sony a7 full frame all images shot wide open.
Emily by NickBrunerPhotography, on Flickr

Joanna by NickBrunerPhotography, on Flickr

It is a great lens, the only thing that is preventing me from giving it a 10 is the slight appearance of CA, and the resolution of modern lenses outmatches it. This doesn't necessarily mean its worth it to spend 1k+ for a modern lens, but some modern lenses are better in general.
   
New Member

Registered: February, 2016
Posts: 3
Lens Review Date: February 22, 2016 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $55.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: sharpness, smooth, bokeh, no CA, handling, fast
Cons:
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: Pentax K-x   

My best lens so far, really sharp at all aperatures, very pleasing bokeh, Multi Coating, smooth focus and aperature ring. I would recommend this lens to all for it's performance and really low price
   
Senior Member

Registered: March, 2013
Posts: 118
Lens Review Date: February 10, 2016 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $30.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: sharp, cheap, beautiful, small
Cons: manual focus
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 9    Value: 10    Camera Used: Pentax K-x   

A lot of bang for the buck ($30 and Pentax P30t as a bonus). It's a joy to shoot with this lens, although it's not easy to focus properly using default Pentax K-x viewfinder.
   
Forum Member

Registered: March, 2010
Location: Sfantu Gheorghe, Romania
Posts: 59
Lens Review Date: February 9, 2016 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $50.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Sharp, color, bokeh, 3d effect
Cons: None
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: Pentax K-x   

Well, what can be said that it didn't mentioned before. You can't praise enough this lens! I have to say this is one of my best lenses: it has the best anti flare resistance - you can take a photograph at two a clock in the afternoon, no problem! Between f2.8 - f.16 it has that 3D effect and it is so sharp that you don't need anything else! Bokeh wide open, wow, you can't ask more!
   
Pentaxian

Registered: November, 2014
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 1,323
Lens Review Date: December 20, 2015 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: N/A | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: small, fast, sharp, great colors
Cons: manual

Wow! Very sharp lens, great colors. I would call this "limited-like", its such a great lens. Although the lens is fully manual, its not all that bad because the manual focus ring is silky smooth, with over 180 degrees of rotation. The only issue i've got with it is the aperture ring has started to wobble the slightest bit. But besides that, great metal, solid build. The bang-for-your-buck not a limited limited lens!

My go-to lens IF the subject doesn't require a wider focal length, and IF i've got time to set up my shot. If not... autofocus lens, here I come!

Click on the images for larger sizes

Bokeh:


Starbursts:








Some more:
https://500px.com/photo/107456951/diy-wineglass-by-ncarr
https://500px.com/photo/107697981/paper-lamps-by-ncarr
   
New Member

Registered: November, 2015
Posts: 1

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: November 10, 2015 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $46.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Sharp, build quality, cheap
Cons: none
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 9    Value: 10    Camera Used: Pentax K-30   


Crop, 100%

   
Forum Member

Registered: April, 2015
Location: Lower Saxony
Posts: 55
Lens Review Date: November 7, 2015 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $40.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: image quality, colours, contrast, easy to focus
Cons: -
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: K 30, K-5 IIs   

This is my favorite lens - not only of more than two dozens of primes from 20mm to 500mm but of all, AF lenses included.
Very sharp at f/2.8, this is my usually f-stop, f/2.0 at darker situations, f/5.6 with good light and for best sharpness, f/1.7 nearly never.
Fast and exact to focus, i am a little more satisfied with this than with my other normal primes ,as there are Pentax A 1.7, M 1.4, K 1.4, K 1.8 55mm and M 2.8 40mm.
There is a small advance to the Ricoh Rikenon 2.0 50mm, which is more detailed at infinity stopped down and nearly lacks of chromatical aberrations, but weaker up to f/4.0.
I tend to buy a second M 1.7 50mm for being sure to have a substitution if there ever will happen any total loss to mine...

Some ooc jpg;
First tests a year ago with K 30 b&w picture style,
f/5.6



Tae-Kwon-Dobi, sharp lens for sharp teeth,
f/2.8




and K-5 IIs b&w picture style + "high contrast" digital filter,
f/2.8
   
Junior Member

Registered: June, 2013
Location: Storrs, Connecticut
Posts: 46
Lens Review Date: October 12, 2015 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: N/A | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Sharp, tiny, great colors, inexpensive, tough as a boot
Cons: Focus ring is a bit tricky at first
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 9    Value: 10    Camera Used: K-01   

I bought this lens in a package on eBay, including an ME Super body, a Tokina SZ 70-210 F3.5, a Vivitar 550MD flash, cases, caps and appropriate paperwork, plus various small accessories, all in like-new condition--except for the leather, fitted Pentax case which was remarkably shabby. It all came in a very nice canvas and leather photo case. Cost: $42 shipped. I couldn't believe I got it all for that price.

The bokeh is spectacular! It feels natural in my hands. Time and experience will tell about the ultimate sharpness, etc., but I learned photography on a Spotmatic with a Super Tak 50/f4. I stripped the film winder on the Spotmatic but still own that f/4 lens. We'll see how this faster lens stacks up to my old f/4. I'm presently on a kick to buy "fast fifties". What's not to like about them?
   
New Member

Registered: January, 2015
Posts: 1
Lens Review Date: October 6, 2015 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $53.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Solid build quality, sharp wide open, colours
Cons: -
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 9    Value: 10    Camera Used: K500   

As most of the photography articles say 50mm is beginner's 1st prime, this is my 1st prime. And I am thrilled after seeing the quality of images obtained through this lens. Sharpness at wide open, beautiful colour retention, awesome bokeh and that all metallic contruction makes this lens a must have vintage lens.
   
Site Supporter

Registered: October, 2015
Location: California
Posts: 120
Lens Review Date: October 4, 2015 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $55.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Size,weight and image quality
Cons: None really
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: Sony A6000   

Having recently decided to move over to prime lenses I used a couple of Canon EF lenses but digging out my old K1000 reminded me of the compact size of the Pentax primes of my youth. I had an old kit 28mm (not the best version) so decided to get a nifty fifty to complement it.

I found a nice looking sample of the 1.7 on eBay and thus started my descent/ascent into legacy lens addiction

Here is a quick sample of what I've done with it so. Just love the IQ, ease of handling and just the sheer feel of the lens. It feels like a proper piece of kit.



And a later second sample

   
Forum Member

Registered: November, 2011
Posts: 85
Lens Review Date: September 25, 2015 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $15.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Sharp, light, silky smooth focus throw, big hole for light, small and discrete
Cons: none really, could i blame the lens for me taking 5 years to try a little manual prime?

Sweet little lens. Why did I not know about the benefits sooner?

Makes my already great feeling camera feel even more like a 'camera'.

One or two primes will be on the market soon I want more M lens!

Will try and post some example shots soon.
   
New Member

Registered: September, 2015
Posts: 2

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: September 19, 2015 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $50.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: sharp, lightweight, no aberrations, great build quality
Cons: none
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 9    Value: 10    Camera Used: Pentax ist DS, modified Canon AstroDSLR   

I use this excellent prime lens in my astrophoto wide field setup, stars are pinpoint and CA is ok also on borders.
In normal daylight use, is one of the best normal lens I've seen (sharpness, bokeh, color and contrast... all very good), optics
are very similar (or possibly the very same) of my beloved SMC Pentax-FA 50mm F1.7, which is superior only in the obvious
autofocusing ability! (by the way, SMC Pentax-FA 50mm F1.7 is the best Pentax lens I have).

Absolutely recommended, you can have the best quality 50mm at a cheap price! (thank you Pentax for bayonet compatibility!).



"Antares Rho Ophiuchi region" SMC Pentax-M 50 f1.7 full open, astromod EOS 350d @ ISO 800, 5x60'', barn door tracker mount;
from West MacDonnell Ranges NP, Northern Territory - Australia (August 2012). (cropped from the original picture)
   
New Member

Registered: October, 2013
Posts: 6

2 users found this helpful
Lens Review Date: July 28, 2015 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $25.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Very small and light and good multi coated/ contrast
Cons: Nothing
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: Pentax MX, Sony NEX-5, Olympus E-PL2   

Love the lens! It's small and light and very sharp as everyone has pointed out.


Photo taken with Sony NEX-5 and Pentax-M 50mm f1.7 lens at widest aperture f/1.7.


Crop of the eyes. Even at f1.7, it is very sharp.
   
Site Supporter

Registered: October, 2008
Location: Vancouver, Canada
Posts: 5,174

2 users found this helpful
Lens Review Date: July 22, 2015 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: N/A | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Excellent optics and well built.
Cons: Handling not as good as the bigger K Series 50/55 lenses.
Camera Used: Pentax film bodies (K1000, KM, KX, K2, K2DMD, ME, MX, LX, Super A, P50)   

The M50/1.7 was released in 1977 and was a direct “miniaturized” replacement for the K55/1.8. The M50/1.7 was in production until 1984, when it was replaced by the A50/1.7.


Optics:
Excellent optics and the M50/1.7 is sharpest at f/8, decent bokeh as well.

Focal Length:
On film this is a normal/standard lens and your go to prime focal length. On APS-C you get the FOV of what the FA77/1.8 is like on film, interesting but less useful. It’s too bad that Pentax cut the traditional 55mm FL from its M Series lineup, as it was always nice to have a choice of 50mm or 55mm for a normal/standard lens.

Build:
Excellent all metal build in a smaller size & weight than its K Series predecessors.

Usage/Handling:
The only quibble I have with the M50/1.7 is the handling. As with a lot of M Series lenses/film bodies there is always a compromise in miniaturization. I find the M50/1.7 is a little too compact for my big hands, compared to the bigger K Series normal/standard prime lenses. As I only use this lens on film cameras, this FL is the one you interact with the most and handling is a big part of the usage of any manual focusing normal/standard prime lens. I tend to use hyperfocal focusing a lot with the M50/1.7 to compensate. The M50/1.7 also has a good, but smallish distance scale.

There were four lens hoods that were available for the M50/1.7, 49mm square plastic, round plastic, round metal and round rubber. These hoods will also work on the other M, A, F & FA normal/standard 49mm filter thread primes. .

Speed:
Normally f/1.7 would be considered a fast maximum aperture, but as this is the third slowest normal/standard prime at the time of the M Series release, f1.7 is just adequate. However the faster K50/1.2 & M50/1.4 were higher priced, so more people ended up with the M50/1.7 as their go to prime than the other two. There was also an even slower M50/2 in the M Series line-up, but it was only available as a kit lens for the K1000 camera.

The M50/1.7 vs my other similar FL normal/standard primes:
I also own the K55/1.8 and both lenses are vary similar, however I prefer the K55/1.8 as it’s a bit bigger and handles better. The K55/1.8 just feels “right” in my hands and is a pleasure to focus. I find the K55/1.8 has slightly better optics/bokeh as well.

Compared to the A50/1.7, the M50/1.7 is way better built than that flimsy plastic lens. However I like the optics a bit better on the A50/1.7, but would still choose the M50/1.7 over it.

Summary:
The M50/1.7 is an excellent normal/standard lens on FF and a good choice in any kit. Not quite a “Classic” like the K55/1.8 but pretty close, just wish it was a bit bigger!

Price:
I bought a Pentax LX and M50/1.7 as a kit, so I don’t have a price for just the lens.

Sample shots taken with the M50/1.7. Photos are medium resolution scans from original negatives. First shot was taken in Ontario, the second in Vancouver, Canada.


Camera: ME Film: **Expired** Kodak Gold 200 ISO: 160




Camera: P50 Film: Adox Color Implosion ISO: 100
***Note this “experimental” film is intentionally grainy with a blue cast***

Add Review of SMC Pentax-M 50mm F1.7



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