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SMC Pentax-M 80-200mm F4.5 Review RSS Feed

SMC Pentax-M 80-200mm F4.5

Reviews Views Date of last review
35 216,300 Fri December 24, 2021
Recommended By Average Price Average User Rating
100% of reviewers $51.59 8.70
SMC Pentax-M 80-200mm F4.5

SMC Pentax-M 80-200mm F4.5
SMC Pentax-M 80-200mm F4.5

This lens succeeded the K 80-200mm; it came in two production versions. Version 1 is a rebadged version of the K counterpart, whereas the second version has a different optical design, and is slightly larger and heavier. The image above and the optical diagram show version 1.

Version 1:

Version 2:

SMC Pentax-M 80-200mm F4.5 (i)
©, sharable with attribution
Image Format
Full-frame / 35mm film
Lens Mount
Pentax K
Aperture Ring
Yes (no A setting)
Automatic, 8 blades
15 elements, 12 groups
Mount Variant
Check camera compatibility
Max. Aperture
Min. Aperture
Min. Focus
160 cm
Max. Magnification
Filter Size
52 mm
Internal Focus
Field of View (Diag. / Horiz.)

APS-C: 20-8.2 ° / 17-6.9 °
Full frame: 30-12 ° / 25-10.3 °
Built-in, slide out
Dedicated hard case
Lens Cap
Plastic clip-on
Weather Sealing
Other Features
One-touch Zoom
Diam x Length
65 x 142 mm
555 g
Production Years
1979 to 1984
Engraved Name
smc PENTAX-M 1:4.5 80-200mm
Product Code
User reviews
This first version of the M 80-200mm is optically similar to the K version
Manual FocusBuilt-in HoodAperture RingFull-Frame SupportDiscontinued
Price History:

Add Review of SMC Pentax-M 80-200mm F4.5
Sort Reviews by: Date | Author | Rating | Recommendation | Likes (Descending) Showing Reviews 1-15 of 35
Site Supporter

Registered: November, 2011
Location: Vancouver, BC
Posts: 48
Review Date: December 24, 2021 Recommended | Rating: 9 

Pros: wonderful colour, contrast, sharp
Cons: unfortunately all manual. "A" setting would be ideal.
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 5    Value: 10    Camera Used: K-5   

I have had this lens since my MX film days, bought used about 1977 for $200 CAN. It has produced some of my favourite pictures. I haven't used it much because of the pure manual features which are difficult to use with moving wildlife. I submit a sample of its sharpness. The first picture is with a 35 mm lens for "normal" perspective of the Calgary airport from downtown Calgary from 9 to 10 km in the distance. The middle shot is at 200 mm (300 mm equivalent). The last picture is about a 300% blowup of the airport hanger. Notice the window in the pickup truck. I would say it is sharp. The 200 mm shot was on a K-5, hand held resting on a railing, ISO 200, 1/320 s, manual exposure. I think it is sharp!
Forum Member

Registered: January, 2011
Location: Richmond, VA
Posts: 55
Review Date: December 3, 2021 Recommended | Price: $50.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Solid build, sharp, easy to use in manual mode
Cons: zoom creeps sometimes
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 8    Value: 9    Camera Used: Pentax K-5   

Sample of my cat

Registered: November, 2017
Location: Garden City, NY
Posts: 6,346

2 users found this helpful
Review Date: November 16, 2021 Recommended | Price: $30.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Handling - Sharpness - IQ - Starburts
Cons: Heavy/bulky
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 7    Bokeh: 7    Handling: 9    Value: 9    Camera Used: K-50   

Great lens. Mine has some haze in the 3rd element and I was unable to clean it. I do not think it affects the shots taken.

Great zoom. Samples are better:


New Member

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

2 users found this helpful
Review Date: February 11, 2021 Recommended | Price: $25.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: light weighted, small, built-in hood, very sharp, nice price
Cons: front lens rotation
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: Pentax MX, MEsuper, KM - Sony A7   

A very sharp and very versatile lens !
There aren´t much disadvantages - only the front lens rotation can be annoying with a polarizer. The summary of the advantages makes this lens to a win for your holliday trip or in the landscape. I love it, not to carry heavy photographic equipment.
Look at the photography of the landscape of the Hegau in the South of Germany. Quite nice I think - handheld and with polarizer !

New Member

Registered: August, 2011
Posts: 6

1 user found this helpful
Review Date: September 23, 2020 Recommended | Price: $25.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: good IQ
Cons: big and bulky
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 9    Value: 10    Camera Used: Sony A7   

This lens is easy to use and the final images are a delight.

Registered: November, 2018
Posts: 541

3 users found this helpful
Review Date: October 3, 2019 Recommended | Rating: N/A 



1 user found this helpful
Review Date: March 18, 2019 Recommended | Price: $20.00 | Rating: N/A 

Pros: Good revies.
Cons: Currently has a fair amount of fungus and stuff to clean out.

Just got this lens today along with a Pentax Z-1 camera and 28-80 lens which I need to get batteries for. Also came with polarising filter and bag. The lot for £45 so hopefully wasn't too much. Don't think I will keep the camera though.
New Member

Registered: February, 2019
Posts: 15

2 users found this helpful
Review Date: February 8, 2019 Recommended | Price: $20.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Just superb
Cons: Nothing
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: ME Super   

In my book, this lens is a champion that really proves pro-prime lens fanatics are wrong to avoid zooms. No lens is ever "tack sharp" as that's just a myth, but this one is as sharp as I've ever seen or used from the centre to the edge, across the whole picture. And it's sharp across a large aperture range if you can hold it still and not blame the equipment for your camera shake. As with any zoom at the top and bottom focal length there is some focussing and quality drop-off, but it's not significant on this lens. Very little aberration, to the point that only a pixel-peeping fusspot would notice it. Colour range is warm and attractive. It can cope with flare and sunlit contrasts really well, so ghosting, haze and bleaching is minimal. On an M series film camera this feels a perfectly balanced total piece of kit. The lens is relatively light and compact. Zoom is so smooth to use. Focus turn is like silk. But beware! Many Ebay sellers pass off fungus infected lenses as being in "mint" or "clean" condition because the fungus loves hiding from a casual glance in this complex lens, so shine an LED torch in there when checking. You'll find a high probability of foggy haze from dried condensation in some. I had to send 2 back to get one relatively clean one inside. Having said this, it's easy to open these lenses up and clean them out. 200mm prime lens? Don't waste your time and money - get this one! Pentax A series 70-210mm lens? No, get this one.
Veteran Member

Registered: September, 2014
Posts: 4,696

3 users found this helpful
Review Date: June 10, 2018 Recommended | Price: $30.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: Resolving power, build, FF coverage
Cons: PF, focus shifts (see text)
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 5    Bokeh: 6    Handling: 4    Value: 8    Camera Used: K-01   

This review is for version 1 of the lens (the one with the chrom ring at the end of the barrel).

This vintage zoom has in its exceptional resolving power its strong point: of course this results in a trade-off which entails some purple fringing on high-contrast borders.

My copy also exhibits a focus shift around f/8 at the long end, which forces me to focus it while stopped down. This could be a problem if using an optical viewfinder, and if the button for the optical DoF preview is placed inconveniently, like on my K-30.
Other people's copies were not affected by this issue, so I guess YMMV.

At the short end, it's even better, with most of its problems disappearing, and the IQ reaching even higher levels.

Bokeh is nothing to write home about, since the lens has a quite pedestrian 6-blades aperture. It has just a little bit of swirl (cat's eye) on APS-C, which is bound to be more evident on FF.

If you have the patience to get past all this quirks, you're rewarded with high-quality pictures (the user contribution notwithstanding, that is! ), as you can see below:

Even at 200mm resolving power is very good

Color rendition is also quite nice

Bokeh is hexagonal if the lens is not shot not wide open

The fine details of feathers are not a problem

At 80mm it's even better

A nice side effect of its high resolving power is that it can be multiplied with no issues. This is a 100% crop of a picture I shot with it at 200mm, coupled with a 2X teleconverter! Click for the full size image on Flickr (1200*1600 px).
New Member

Registered: December, 2012
Posts: 21

1 user found this helpful
Review Date: December 12, 2014 Recommended | Price: $75.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: superb build, handy, good IQ, smooth handling
Cons: none
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 9    Value: 9    Camera Used: K-5, K-x, K200D   

I used in the past A LOT of telezooms: hanimex (because of lack of money), then Tokina 4/80~200 that I bought for some 100 DeutscheMark in the 90s, today it would translate to >100€ because of impressive test results in a well-reknowned German magazine. At the same time, Pentax' zoom got a meek critic. And I (silly me!) kept that hearsaying for over 20 years in my mind.
Came the era of AF, and I got the pentax-f 70-200, which pleased me a lot, although the colours were somewhat colder and less vibrant than on my other Pentax lenses. Sigma 75-300 AF, Tokina AT-Xpro 2.8/80-200, Sigma apo 3.5-4.5/50-200 and many more.

Some months ago I gave this Seventies vintage lens anothe try. Bought it at eBay for ~75 US $ and was bequeathed with a mint copy of the zoom! Lucky me

I took it meanwhile to a lot of test strolls in the nature, also doing architecture photos. I tested it (same spot, same settings, same tripod (manfrotto) against a manualfocus Sigma 70~210 APO. The Sigma may be a tad sharper through the whole span, but the M-zoom pics do look more realistic: there is something in the air of the M-zoom's pictures that give you the feeling you are ON the scene just by looking at your PC monitor. And I'm not talking about the much warmer (though not at all yellowish) and sympathetic colours of the M-zoom.

What pushed me to write a POSITIVE review on this particular zoom: I tested it also against the OUTSTANDING, huge, tack-sharp and perfect Pentax 645 4.5/80~160 zoom (via original K-adapter, which cost the triple of the M-zoom on the same eBay!). If you take your time and do focus precisely, the pictures of the M-zoom aren't, at first sight , different than those of that huge 645 thing. Amazing!
but the 4.5/80-600 zoom although having nominally the same aperture as the M-zoom, gives you a MUCH brighter viewfinder image, resulting in more effortless focusing, composing, etcetera., this is something optics theoreticians should explain some day.

resumé: very appealing colours, superb build, NO ZOOM CREEP in my copy, and very realistic images. This M-zoom is a keeper!
Inactive Account

Registered: November, 2013
Posts: 9
Review Date: November 16, 2014 Recommended | Rating: 8 

Pros: build quality
Cons: none
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 8    Value: 10   

great colours , go od bokeh , a bit slow , not as sharp as expected , but 80-200mm very good for nature walkabout , a little difficult to focus
Veteran Member

Registered: September, 2010
Location: Manchester, UK
Posts: 2,653

2 users found this helpful
Review Date: March 9, 2014 Recommended | Price: $15.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: Cost, build quality
Cons: Weight, size
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 6    Handling: 7    Value: 9    Camera Used: K-7   

My copy came well fungus infested and hence very cheap (£12.50 including postage). Fortunately, as with all the M lenses, it dismantled and cleaned up easily.

Physically it is very similar to its smaller sister, the M75-150 f4, of the same diameter but just a bit longer and slightly heavier. Same push-pull design - the zoom does not extend the lens at all and the focus ring has a similar well damped long travel. There is also a shortish built-in extendible hood. It is an all metal build, internally all parts are well finished and obviously made to last.

Performance-wise it is surprisingly good. Quite useable wide open and sharpens up a lot stopped down a few clicks. Bokeh is a bit on the rough side. As with all the old lenses there can be some purple fringing but there is little CA or distortion on my copy.

As far as handling goes I prefer the shorter M75-150 f4, this one is just a bit too long and heavy on a DSLR.

Some test shots at various apertures and focal lengths are here.
Veteran Member

Registered: December, 2013
Location: Houston, TX
Posts: 1,717
Review Date: January 21, 2014 Recommended | Price: $65.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: Affordability, image quality
Cons: A bit hard to focus, Slow
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 7    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: K-5 IIs   

The value of this lens is absolutely unbeatable: pristine copies can be found for less than $100. For that price, you get solid optical performance and 1970s tank-like build quality. I've dropped this lens onto concrete and it suffered no damage (note: don't test that!).

This lens handles exceptionally well. It is well-balanced on modern camera bodies and the focus ring and zoom turn smoothly. It really doesn't feel heavy at all, especially compared to other modern lenses.

This lens really needs to be stopped down for good sharpness, which starts to set in one notch below f/8 or so (with a maximum at f/8). Wide-open, it's not so sharp and contrast seems poor. It's manual focus only and tends to be hard to pinpoint perfect focus. If you're shooting anything that moves, be prepared to accept a lot of blurry shots. That said, it works well for landscapes and other stationary objects, where focusing speed is irrelevant.

I can't say I care for the lens' bokeh. The lens doesn't focus close enough for use in any macro-like situations and its bokeh at distances is harsh.

Overall, this is a great telephoto starter lens. If you don't have this reach in your bag and are just starting out, you can learn a lot from this lens and it's cheap enough that you won't mind replacing it when you do determine your needs. If you're looking for something that will produce nice images for a very little amount of money--say you will only use it a few times, this is a great lens to purchase. It's pretty compact for a long zoom and won't weigh down your bag much at all. It's marvelous to travel around with.
New Member

Registered: December, 2013
Posts: 2

2 users found this helpful
Review Date: December 25, 2013 Recommended | Price: $25.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Sharp when stopped down, build quality, usable 200mm
Cons: quite heavy, quite slow, unusable wide open, CA, creep
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 9    Value: 10    Camera Used: Canon EOS 600D   

I bought this lens on an auction for about 25$ and it's a great buy, with a few "but"s.
First off, it is utter crap at it's already slow f4.5. Everything is blurred out, can't focus. Stop it down to 5.6 and it starts to get sharp. Go down to 8 or better yet 11, it gets really sharp, even at 200mm.
Also when wide open, it gets horrible CA, combined with the blur - it's unacceptable. But at 5.6 the CA is not so apparent anymore.
Built like a tank - works very nicely. It does show extensive creep though when positionoed vertically, nothing to be shocked about. Bokeh is nice.
Overall you will find this lens great if you accept that in practice, it's a 5.6 and not 4.5 lens. It's sharp, handles CA quite well and has decent contrast, considering. This is not your regular zoom, but for certain tasks - it can be THE budget zoom with long focal length. It is very usable even at 200mm when stopped down.
I use it with my Canon T3i through adapter, no looseness, no modification to the lens required, works great.
New Member

Registered: February, 2012
Posts: 17

3 users found this helpful
Review Date: June 14, 2013 Recommended | Price: $15.00 | Rating: 7 

Pros: Compact, light
Cons: There are plenty of faster alternatives.
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 8    Value: 10    Camera Used: Samsung GX-20   

I bought this after discovering the brilliant Pentax-M 35-70mm f2.8-3.5 and the astounding Pentax-M 75-150mm f4. However, I don't think this is in quite the same league.

My copy is version 2. It seems to be in perfect condition, and cost £10 including postage.

The images I take with it resemble those taken with the somewhat older and bulkier Tamron 85-210mm f4.5 Model QZ-210M. On the screen, the overall impression given by the images are similar, and when I pixel-peep, contrast and detail appear likewise. The Pentax has fewer fringes though.

The Pentax bokeh and colour are unexceptional.

The Pentax is very well made, and it handles nicely, but although the wide open images I have taken with it are comparable to, they are not as sharp as, those taken with the somewhat larger Tamron Adaptall-2 70-210mm f3.8-4 Model 46A, and this is true at all focal lengths. I find that even with Image Stabilisation, the faster the shutter speed, the more likely it is that my pictures are going to be sharp. For me, the speed advantage of the Tamron seems to make a useful difference to the success of my attempts to photograph.

I judge the Pentax wide open performance to be superior to that of the slightly faster Kiron-made Vivitar Series 1 70-210mm f3.5 and the Kiron-made Vivitar 75-205mm f3.8.

The Pentax works well with the Pentax 1.7x AF converter. But you need good light.

The lack of fringing compared with the Tamrons ensures that I do use the Pentax occasionally, but the relatively narrow maximum aperture is a downer. Since the Pentax can be acquired so inexpensively, and is quite compact for such a focal length range, the availability of plenty of other lenses that are just as good, or slightly better, is no reason to avoid owning the Pentax. Thus I have no hesitation in recommending it. But I have marked it down to a 7 to reflect the many available possibly superior and equally inexpensive alternatives.
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