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SMC Pentax-M 50mm F1.7

Reviews Views Date of last review
201 546,084 Fri March 24, 2017
Recommended By Average Price Average User Rating
100% of reviewers $41.24 9.37
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
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
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
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 106-120 of 201
Inactive Account

Registered: October, 2009
Location: Montrouge, France
Posts: 31
Lens Review Date: October 26, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $80.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Bokeh, aperture, build quality, price
Cons: None
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 10    Value: 10   

This is my best Pentax lens. Better than the A 50 f:1,4 or K 50 f:1,2 I own and far most cheaper (and better than the A 50 f:1,7 too). One of the 1st old Pentax lenses I started to purchase for my K20D a few years ago but never equaled yet (and I own a large range of old Pentax lenses). A lens universally recognized by Pentax amateurs. A very beautiful bokeh when I compare it to my Leica M lenses. And, of course, far better than the kit lenses. With an APSC DLSR, it becomes a 75 mm, a perfect lens for portrait. So you don't need to use the green button on A setting: you just use it at 1,7 to obtain a beautiful Bokeh.
I won't bore you with sharpness or pixel count: what is important in a lens is the feeling you have with its special rendering. One can recognize a leica shot from others. I won't say the same for this one but you certainly can feel its quality among all your Pentax lenses (particularly vs. FA, DA, ... lenses).
So, that's why I put a 10. I should not because no lens really deserve a 10 (some Leica lenses I own are obviously better) if 10 is considered as perfection. But it deserve a rate close to 10 in the Pentax range. So, let's say that I rate this lens using the practices of this forum.
I'll put a few photos made with this lens during the night. No flash, no photo editing, sometimes weird adjustments (6400 ISO, B & W selected, red filter, ...).

Night impressionist portrait
(Non working link removed)

Palm trees in the night of Barcelona
(Non working link removed)

Jamon Bellota
(Non working link removed)

(Non working link removed)

(Non working link removed)

A church in Prague winter

Veteran Member

Registered: July, 2011
Location: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Posts: 647

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: October 24, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $35.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: SHARP, sharp, great colors, BUILT LIKE A TANK!!, FAST!, great DOF, did i mention sharp?
Cons: Manual focus may be a problem for some (it can be very fun too, not that fun when you miss the focus), not super sharp wide open, but very usable
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 8    Value: 10   

I bought it only 15 days after i got the camera (actually i bought the camera 24 days ago, so im pretty new with it :P), but this lens left my camera at MAX 4 times after that. It's very good to use. You manual focus it, so you really feel like you are actually DOING something. Of course, i use the camera on Manual, so im actually doing something everytime, but when manual focusing its great.
Also, put this lens at 5.6 and you'll be amazed. SUPER SUPER sharp. But using it at f1.7 is great, it defocus everything so nicely.
Some pics below :

Hope that'll help someone.
PS : More than a year after buying it, and already with my K-30, i just updated my review.
Bokeh can get pretty nervous with this lens, but i'm a tad bit crazy, sometimes i think its really nice to have that kind of background defocus.
Manual focus can make you mad a lot of times, and you can't use this lens in really low light...kind of kills the 1.7 point
Overall a great lens for the price
Senior Member

Registered: May, 2010
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 174
Lens Review Date: October 20, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $50.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Sharpness, color, contrast, fast, light, bokeh
Cons: none
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 7    Value: 10   

This was the first lens I bought even before I bought my first DSLR K-x. Strange but true. Once I made up my mind to go with Pentax, I was searching for lenses and unknowingly I bought this lens over ebay. When I got my DSLR, at first I was not comfortable with all manual and stopped down metering.

Over time I started liking it and now I love it as one of the most valuable things in my bag
This is an amazing piece of glass that delivers excellent images, but you should be good at manual focusing. And I have seen people producing amazing videos with this lens (check on You Tube)

At 50$ it delivers superb images with sharpness, color and contrast and excellent bokeh.

If you find one, grab it.

Veteran Member

Registered: December, 2010
Location: 11432
Posts: 375
Lens Review Date: September 12, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $1.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: very light, cheap, very bright
Cons: nope.
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 10    Value: 10   

I bough it only $1 at ebay^^ It's good for beginners who want to learn MF. LIke MF more than AF^^
New Member

Registered: July, 2011
Posts: 8
Lens Review Date: September 6, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: N/A | Rating: 9 

Pros: Size, weight, sharpness, 1.7
Cons: MF, bokeh
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 9    Value: 10   

Brilliant little lens. It really can live up with my 100DFA WR macro and 70 limited, it's that good for a fraction of the price. OK, the colors are not as sparkling as with the newer, digital era lenses. An f/1.7 gives you a shallow DOF if you need (portraits), but the bokeh is not as nice round as the other lenses I mentioned. However, because of its sharpness I often prefer this lens over the 1.4 50 FA.
It's compact and light, feels tough. Great.
The price: I paid 50 euros (75 USD nowadays...) for the 28 2.8, 50 1.7 and 135 3.5 M's combined.
Senior Member

Registered: June, 2010
Location: Sweden
Posts: 187
Lens Review Date: August 23, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: N/A | Rating: 10 

Pros: Metal body, Smooth focusing, Great bokeh & Sharpness, Small & Light, True colors (with Super Multi-Coated Optics), Cheapest price.
Cons: None
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 10    Value: 10   

I'm using this lens primarily for video shootings. This is a great lens. I like smooth focusing especially. I would recommend this lens to everyone. Regards...


Full size ->

Full size ->
Forum Member

Registered: April, 2011
Location: Gwynedd
Posts: 93
Lens Review Date: August 11, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $30.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: Overall a nice lens
Cons: softness wide open
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 7    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 10    Value: 9   

We all know this is a good lens, it's not the best 50mm out there but it is a good one certainly.

A bot on the soft side wide open but useable, purple fringing is quite pronounced too. From F2 onwards its fantastic.

The Bokeh is pretty decent, and at large apertures it almost manages to pull off the 3D effect.
Senior Member

Registered: June, 2011
Location: Israel
Posts: 177
Lens Review Date: August 10, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $50.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Super sharp, nice bokeh, and you can't beat the price for this type of quality!
Cons: Manual focus
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 10    Value: 9    Camera Used: Pentax K-r   

I bought this lens from another member here on the Pentax Forums... and I must say, it was a great use of $50! The lens is small, but heavier than it looks, this thing is solid! And it takes really sharp photos.

I must say this would be a perfect lens, if only it was auto focus. But if you get used to using the manual focus, this is a definite a great lens to use!

If you can find one for a good price I would definitely recommend picking it up! You won't regret it.

Registered: May, 2010
Location: Hong Kong / Irvine, CA
Posts: 561
Lens Review Date: July 24, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: N/A | Rating: 9 

Pros: sharp, small, nice focus ring, cheap
Cons: the blades are not round @ f2

My only complain is the OOF circle are not round, and it's some weird shape.
Junior Member

Registered: June, 2011
Location: Budapest
Posts: 33
Lens Review Date: July 23, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $45.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: brutal good
Cons: none..
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: K200D   

My best buy!
Very good dof, strong production, and cheap!
New Member

Registered: July, 2011
Lens Review Date: July 15, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $41.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: price, sharpness, availability, soft and nice bokeh when wide open
Cons: maybe reflections in the direct light (but that's an extreme)

An excellent lens for a excellent price... It's my first prime lens and the difference in sharpness between the kit lens on my K-x and this 50mm is giant. After a lot of years of production it is still a brilliant choise not only for begginers.

Registered: June, 2011
Location: New York City
Posts: 5,624
Lens Review Date: June 28, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $59.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: Sharp, accurate color depiction, fast
Cons: Manual focus under low light is damn hard

Nifty fifty to the tee, this lens is very sharp (especially when stopped down a little), very good color, and is quite the dream to use with the manual focus and manual aperture. I enjoy using it for day to day shooting in daylight and well lit conditions. Under dimmer conditions, it's hard for me to get perfect focus, so I usually have to take a few shots while tweaking the focus ring. The focus ring itself is pretty easy to manipulate. The aperture ring is a bit thin, but has a nice feel (especially the click).

For a 40+ year old lens, this thing is amazing.
Forum Member

Registered: January, 2011
Location: Czech Republic
Posts: 80
Lens Review Date: June 13, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $50.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: sharpness, build quality, great focusing ring, colours, size, IQ, price
Cons: manual focus, bokeh at f2.0 and f2.8
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 10    Value: 10   

This lens is incredibly sharp, the build quality is amazing like with all the old lenses. The focusing ring is accurate and easy to operate. It has lovely colours and the IQ quality is superb. Only flaw I found is the bokeh at f2.0 and f2.8 which looks a bit like cog-wheel.
Anyway, it is an amazing lens and everybody should have one. The difference between this and the kit lens is so huge!
Forum Member

Registered: December, 2010
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 90
Lens Review Date: May 15, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $25.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Sharpness, Value, MF Feel, color rendition
Cons: MF with modern viewfinders

This lens really is beautiful. Metal, glass... it exudes quality. The focus ring is well damped, and a joy to use. My only complaints with this lens, and the only reason I don't use it more, have more to do with quirks of digital cameras than anything wrong with this lens.

As a digital shooter, this is longer than I was looking for when I bought it. It's not a normal lens - it's a short telephoto. If you shoot indoors, think carefully about how wide you need. Entry level viewfinders are also a bit difficult to focus with, so know that it will take a while for you to get used to it, and you may need a focusing screen.

Nitpicking aside, I absolutely love the optics in this lens. Sharp, fast, beautiful colors... Nothing to complain about.

Forum Member

Registered: February, 2011
Posts: 84
Lens Review Date: April 30, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $60.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Price, sharpness, color, build quality, size, bang for buck
Cons: At this price? None. Zero. Zip.

If you ever buy just one cheap prime lens, let it be this. Don't have any delusions about the age or cheap price - they might laugh at your small, old lens, but when you compare the results I guarantee you won't be the embarrassed one. When it comes to 50mm primes, they literally don't make them like they used to.

The fact that it's full manual is only good for you, as it forces you to concentrate on what you're trying to accomplish instead of firing away with full auto. Trust me, it's good for you to get to know the technical side of taking a shot, and you find the information help you with your other lenses too. You learn new tricks and will try new ways, and as a result will gain experience and skill.

Perhaps the most striking thing about this lens is the unparalleled bang for the buck. Image quality-wise it's so close the very sharpest drawing lenses out there that you wouldn't see the difference without gushing out close to 4-digit amount of cash, and depending on your skill not necessarily even then.

The super smooth operation of focus is out of the league of cheap plastic lenses. It's buttery pleasant, effortless and you just want to keep using it even if you're sure you've already nailed the shot.

This lens is superb right from the widest 1.7 which is a small miracle. It enables you to really pop the subject out of space, and your shots will never look the same again.

The only concievable downside is that it might lead you to the false assumption that throwing in a 1.5-, 2- or 3-fold amount of $$$ would yet increase image quality, when in fact it won't. To top this small miracle lens will take a lot more cash than that.

Okay I admit that after getting used to this image quality you have to shove a lot more cash on lenses than you used to.

Quick sample below. This is the kind of shit that pours out of my camera after getting the Pentax-M 50mm f/1.7.

Shot at f/1.7, ISO 100, 1/1000 sec, with K20D (3rd party focusing screen, settings: Av with +0.7 EV, center spot metering)

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