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SMC Pentax-Q 08 Wide Zoom 3.8-5.9mm F3.7-4 Review RSS Feed

SMC Pentax-Q 08 Wide Zoom 3.8-5.9mm F3.7-4

Reviews Views Date of last review
10 32,406 Sat December 21, 2019
Recommended By Average Price Average User Rating
100% of reviewers $398.60 9.60
SMC Pentax-Q 08 Wide Zoom 3.8-5.9mm F3.7-4

SMC Pentax-Q 08 Wide Zoom 3.8-5.9mm F3.7-4
SMC Pentax-Q 08 Wide Zoom 3.8-5.9mm F3.7-4
SMC Pentax-Q 08 Wide Zoom 3.8-5.9mm F3.7-4
SMC Pentax-Q 08 Wide Zoom 3.8-5.9mm F3.7-4

This lens is a wide angle zoom for the Pentax Q Series of compact mirrorless interchangeable lens cameras. It's focal length range is equivalent to approximately 21 to 33 mm in the full-frame (24 x 36 mm) format when used on a Q/Q10, and 17.5 to 27 mm when used on a Q7.

This lens is part of the Pentax-Q "High Performance" lens series, designed to maximize image quality.

To compensate for the lack of apertures smaller than F8 it has a built-in neutral density filter. The lens has a built-in shutter which prevents the rolling shutter effect and synchronizes with the built-in flash.

The lens has a built-in autofocus motor and features Quick-shift which allows the photographer to manually fine tune focus without switching out of autofocus mode.

A plastic lens hood is available, but sold separately. The lens mount is made of metal. It accepts 49 mm lens filters.

It was made be available in the US in December, 2013 for $499.

08 Wide Zoom 3.8-5.9mm F3.7-4
©, sharable with attribution
Image Format
Q (1/1.7")
Lens Mount
Pentax Q
Aperture Ring
Automatic, 5 blades
10 elements, 8 groups
Max. Aperture
Min. Aperture
AF (in-lens motor)
Min. Focus
25 cm
Max. Magnification
Filter Size (mm)
Internal Focus
Field of View (Diag. / Horiz.)

1/2.3" (Q/Q10): 92-67 °
1/1.7" (Q7/Q-S1): 102-77 °
Lens Cap
Weather Sealing
Other Features
Built-in ND Filter,Leaf Shutter
Diam x Length
54 x 38 mm (2.13 x 1.5 in.)
75 g (2.65 oz.)
Production Years
2013 to present (in production)
$496 USD current price
$499 USD at launch
Engraved name: smc PENTAX 1:3.7-4 3.8-5.9mm ED AL [IF]
User reviews
Lens hood not included with lens.
AL and ED elements.

Purchase: Buy the SMC Pentax-Q 08 Wide Zoom 3.8-5.9mm F3.7-4
Sample Photos: View Sample Photos
Price History:

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Sort Reviews by: Date | Author | Rating | Recommendation | Likes (Descending) Showing Reviews 1-10 of 10
Site Supporter

Registered: June, 2013
Location: Washington DC
Posts: 610
Review Date: December 21, 2019 Recommended | Price: $400.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: 17.5mm in a package this small -- exclamation point!
Cons: none
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 8    Value: 10    Camera Used: Q7   

I rated Sharpness, Aberrations, Bokeh, Handling all at 8 because because those characteristics are essentially irrelevant given the sensor sizes of the Q cameras, and the small camera bodies ("Handling"?). I don't worry about any of those factors with the Q-system and this lens. But those characteristics are even more irrelevant with respect to the characteristic that matters: value. Value not in dollars, but rather in accessible ultra-wide zoom in such a ridiculously small size. In 2019, I still do not know what beats the Q-system with this and the 06 tele-zoom. As for sharpness, this lens is as good as it gets on the sensors in the Q's. Bokeh is impossible: shoot in BC mode if you need that, but, really, just bokeh in post if you need that. This lens is crazy unique, which alone makes it crazy good.
New Member

Registered: March, 2014
Location: New York
Posts: 13
Review Date: April 20, 2019 Recommended | Price: $358.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: Size/weight, IQ, close minimum focus distance
Cons: Price, only f/3.7-4 max aperture
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 7    Handling: 9    Value: 8    Camera Used: Q7   

I put off getting this one until a couple of weeks ago because I wasn't sure I'd use it enough to justify the price. Its range does overlap somewhat with the 02 lens, which I already have. Finally decided to get it because everyone seems to have much good and very little bad to say about it, and because I no longer have anything wider than 24mm for any camera I own.

And yes, I'm glad I now have it, although I'm also still well aware that it won't be an everyday lens. On the Q7 its range is roughly 17.5mm to 27.4mm. For me it'll be primarily useful for travel, I should think.

What I like best about it is that it seems to offer good IQ overall (although not always at the corners, wide open) and focuses quite closely. This latter point can sometimes overcome the issue of not having a very large maximum aperture: if the subject is quite close, you can use the Blur Control setting to get rid of intrusive background messiness instead of shooting aperture priority as wide as possible. I had not really found a use for Blur Control before now, so this makes me happy.

The cat photo is the first one I took with the lens. Both are SOOC.

Veteran Member

Registered: November, 2012
Posts: 963
Review Date: January 7, 2017 Recommended | Price: $230.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Small yet sharp, impressive rendition
Cons: No included hood in the package
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 6    Handling: 9    Value: 9    Camera Used: Q7, Q   

This is an impressively, amazing lens.

I wasn't a believer, and honestly, got a bit scared of the brand new price. When a $230 almost mint, but torn box came out in a second hand market, I immediately arranged to grab it.

After a few test shots, I believe that this is the perfect lens for the Q system. It's as sharp as the 01, yet incredibly small for an ultra wide.

It's almost unbelievable how Pentax has made such a marvelous feat of a lens!

Now, if only Ricoh did not scrimp on a hood.

With a 06 on Q, and 08 on Q7, and 01 on standby, I'm all set.
Senior Member

Registered: August, 2012
Posts: 118
Review Date: October 25, 2016 Recommended | Price: $208.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Size, weight, IQ, filter size
Cons: too much overlap in zoom range with 02
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 6    Handling: 9    Value: 9    Camera Used: Q-7, Q-S1   

This is a high performance lens with a high fun factor.

If you don't like ultrawides don't even think about getting this.

The bokeh is pretty much non-existent unless you are really close.

The JJC hood works perfectly and allows you to keep a lens cap on.

It would be nice it if it had a bit wider FOV at the wide end and a little less at the long end.

I agree with Wolfhorn - it has better edge sharpness than the 16-50 at 16mm

This lens almost eliminates the need for the 03 fish-eye and the 04 toy wide lenses.

It you have two bodies, this and the 06 are an unbeatable combo.

It is starting to show up on the used market now at lower prices.
New Member

Registered: May, 2015
Location: Melbourne
Posts: 1

2 users found this helpful
Review Date: February 27, 2016 Recommended | Price: $400.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: compact, fantastic corner sharpness, great colour reproduction , minor distortion
Cons: not really
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: Q7   

I was a bit hesitating before purchasing this lens due to the steep pricing (nearly cost as much as I spent on 01+02+06 all together). However, once I received my copy and started shooting with it, all my concerns went away. What a lens! It is certainly compact, quite a bit smaller than 02 or 06 lens. The amazing thing is the IQ, corner sharpness smashed my DA* 16-50. In fact, it is one of the sharpest wide angle lens I have ever seen. Colour reproduction is great, which makes RAW file super easy to work with. To sum up, for any one who owns a Q system camera, this lens is a must_have!

Loyal Site Supporter

Registered: January, 2008
Location: Paris, TN
Posts: 3,330
Review Date: June 22, 2015 Recommended | Price: $390.00 | Rating: 10 


I don't claim much experience with WA lenses but I can agree with all the good things said in previous reviews. I have no "Yes, but..." critical comments to add.

I've shot with the Sigma 10-20's, the Tamron 10-24 and the DA 16-45 -- this one is at least the equal for IQ.

But to really appreciate this lens you have to place it in context with the Q- bodies. It is simply gonna BE THERE when any of my other APS-C DSLRs and WA lenses would have been too burdensome to bother with.

It packs light and small enough to be with you when nothing else in that FL range would fit. Adding the 01, 03 and 06 for a full system kit doesn't take up the space of a really good sandwich in a fanny-pack.

The price seems high at first but it shouldn't because the results you'll get in the field match any of the better WA lenses available IMLE.

I screwed up the other day - thought I had either the DA 18-135 or the AF SP 70-200 with me. Turned out to be the DA*300 prime and the Q7+08 saved the day.
New Member

Registered: January, 2015
Posts: 14
Review Date: March 22, 2015 Recommended | Price: $500.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: small wide angle zoom with excellent quality
Cons: cost
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 9    Value: 9   

Excellent little wide angle zoom. Very flare resistant (excellent for a zoom, much better than the 12-24mm). Low field curvate, sharp from corner to corner. Best f.stop is f.4.5 (3,8 mm), respectively f.5,6 (5.9 mm). I used this lens on a Q7.
Site Supporter

Registered: February, 2012
Location: Adelaide Hills, South Australia
Posts: 10,956

1 user found this helpful
Review Date: January 31, 2015 Recommended | Price: $450.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Size, 49mm filter thread, IQ
Cons: Bokeh (duh!), cost
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 7    Handling: 9    Value: 8   

I have just finished using this lens daily for a month in the Single In challenge. Images can be viewed HERE

It is WIDE!! And rectilinear(ish), and it focusses really close. The control rings are smooth; the manual focus ring is a bit fiddly for my big mitts, but in most cases the AF is awesome so that doesn't really matter. It sticks out less from the camera than the 02 Standard Zoom, but it is significantly thicker, which is a *good* thing. Why? Because it takes Pentax-friendly 49mm filters! I had one episode of HIDEOUS flare, but most of the time if the sun was in the frame it wasn't a biggie. The after-market hood seems to work.

It's pretty sharp from the get-go, and chromatic aberration is virtually non-existant. The aspherical element may actually be worthwhile! Contrast and colour rendition is excellent.

On the down side, it is very difficult to get meaningful bokeh, but anyone who expects that out of a sub-6mm lens is dreaming. It is quite expensive, and you still need to shell out for a hood, which isn't even made by Pentax.

All up, it looks great, works brilliantly and has some rather fancy optics in such a tiny lens. It will not replace the 02 as a general purpose lens, but when I am only packing the Q7, and there's a landscape to be had, this will be the tool.
Loyal Site Supporter

Registered: September, 2009
Location: Phoenix, AZ
Posts: 7,179
Review Date: November 8, 2014 Recommended | Price: $450.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Excellent quality wide angle zoom
Cons: Expensive
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 9    Value: 8   

When this lens was announced I was very skeptical. How could anyone justify spending that much on a Q lens? Earlier this summer I had some money burning a hole in my PayPal account and a good deal on a new 08 appeared on Ebay. I bought the lens and almost immediately had severe buyers regret. I thought I had been an idiot to spend that much on a Q lens when I already had plenty of glass on my K3. Once the lens arrived all my doubts vanished. This is an outstanding addition to the Q line. Someone mentioned that they rate it with the 01 and rarely use the 01 now that the 08 is here. I understand that comment completely. I now use it as much or more than I use my 06 which has been my main Q lens for the past couple of years. I should point out that I am used to good lenses. I have the DA10-17; DA*16-50; Sigma 8-16; DA 15 and several of other DA* lenses and the Fa 31. Of course Q equipment does not match those lenses on a K3 or K5IIs but the 08 comes very close in many circumstances. If you do not understand the Q you may disagree but I think anyone who understands and enjoys the Q will find the 08 a wonderful addition to their camera bag - always assuming they can afford the purchase.By the way, I am aware that my over all rating is higher than the total of the individual scores. That is because with this lens it's value exceeds the sum of its parts. I have attached some sample pictures.
Junior Member

Registered: February, 2014
Location: Nissedal (Goblin Valley)
Posts: 38
Review Date: August 9, 2014 Recommended | Price: $600.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Very light and small
Cons: None
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 10    Value: 10   

Fantastic little lens. Handles a ND filter with no vignetting. Very flare resistant. Best f.stop is f.4.5 for center sharpness. Extreme corners are a little soft compared to my Leica R 21mm.
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