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Kiron 28mm F2 MC

Reviews Views Date of last review
17 82,080 Sun June 9, 2019
Recommended By Average Price Average User Rating
94% of reviewers $115.00 8.80
Kiron 28mm F2 MC

Kiron 28mm F2 MC
Kiron 28mm F2 MC

Fast 28mm wide angle, also sold under the Vivitar marque, can be found in M42, PK and, more rarely, PKA, mounts (pic 2).

Construction; 8 elements in 8 groups
Filter Diameter: 55mm
Aperture: f2 - f16, half clicks, with DOF scale on barrel
Iris: 6 blades
CFD: 0.3m / 12"
Focus throw: ~ 120 deg rotation
Length: 5cms.
Weight: 284g / 10oz
FOV: 66 Degrees (Horizontal) on full frame.

For contemporary magazine reviews of this lens see here.

Review by vintage lens reviews.

Test on full frame sony A7R by Dan Eurrit (PF u/n OSV).

These kirons are well known for having sticky iris's due to deterioration of the helicoid grease causing oil to get onto the blades. There is a repair article here.
Mount Type: Pentax K
Price History:

Add Review of Kiron 28mm F2 MC
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New Member

Registered: June, 2017
Posts: 2
Lens Review Date: June 9, 2019 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $36.00 | Rating: N/A 

Pros: F2.0, classic mechanics, PK mount
Cons: alternatives now for crop sensors make better sense; 55mm filter
Sharpness: 7    Aberrations: 7    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 10    Value: 5   

For a fast wideangle this is as good or as bad as near all the others. For shooting slow speed film on an SLR, it is worth the cost to find one to get the extra light through the mirror and onto the film over a F2.8 or F3.5. Colour negative film can cope with overexposed highlights way better than digital but hates underexposure in the mid-tones.

Expense --- As its a wideangle, you will need a lens hood for flare protection and a polariser for restoring contrast with reflective green vegetation and wet rocks near streams and waterfalls (oh yes, and for those deep blue skies!); a 55mm filter size makes things complicated if, like me, you have tried to keep your PK kit based around the 49mm thread size of the little ~SMC lenses. So either you need to pay up for separate 55mm hoods and filters, or invest in a step up ring to 58mm to match the big telephotos. Kiron/Kino/Vivitar did make an excellent, if heavy, 135mm F2.8 with 55mm filter thread; if you have that lens - this is an excellent match to pair it with.

Is F2 needed today? For wideangles we are not looking for shallow depths of field - this is all about light gathering. As others have reported, the Kiron F2 (and pretty much every other 28mm or 24mm F2) it isn't the best optically until F4-5.6; in these digital days of 800ASA having great colour and contrast, fast F-stops mean little other than a bright focus screen for a DSLR. to nail focus and compose On mirrorless cameras with electronic viewfinders, that value is lost.

For crop sensor cameras the arrival of inexpensive Chinese 25mm F1.8 lenses from Meike and 7-Artisans has changed all that. My Meike 25mm F1.8 has taken the place of my old legacy wideangles - which are now back in my "slow-photography" film camera bag. Don't forget with those crop-factor lenses to buy the long "telephoto" lens hoods to cut the chance of flare and contrast killing internal reflections.
Seeker of Knowledge

Registered: August, 2016
Location: Topeka, Kansas
Posts: 16,005
Lens Review Date: October 25, 2017 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $50.00 | Rating: N/A 

Pros: seems well made, sharp, great value, P/KA mount
Cons: none at this time
Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: K 5 II   

name on lens is

Kino Precision Japan Kiron 28mm f/2 [filter ] 55 MC ( around the outside of the lens body , nothing on the outer face of the lens )

rare P/KA mount

this report will be fleshed out in the future

just received from a forum member via the Market Place this Kiron 28mm f/2 MC [ p/ka ]

have only used it so far with my K 5 II. will be using it with that camera body, my K 3 and K 3 II as well
New Member

Registered: December, 2016
Posts: 18

2 users found this helpful
Lens Review Date: February 11, 2017 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $198.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: sharp wide open, fantastic sharp stopped down, excellent contrast, good colours
Cons: none for PKA version, manual version blades can be stuck
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: K-S1, K-3   

This is a review for the PK-A version I have. Not the manual version. I had 2 very nice samples of the manual version but the blades of both stuck.
My information is that Kiron used different oil in the later version with A contacts.

It is a very useful lens, sharpness is sometimes little soft near corners wide open but this makes nice
composition. Stopped down to 2.8 is already super sharp.
Sharpness is one thing but contrast and micro-contrast is for me more important. This is strong ability of this lens, really good contrast.

No problem with chrom. aberation really.

Very strong colours, life like alive, very fresh. A bit like Zeiss Distagon 28mm. Not so much Pentax colours like FA31. Some can find it more cool. But is just different.

built quality is similar to old K-lenses. Smooth focus.

Bokeh: 6 blades make wide open typical hectagonal but round when stopped down which works very well.
Junior Member

Registered: January, 2016
Location: Warsaw
Posts: 32
Lens Review Date: June 8, 2016 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: None indicated | Rating: 9 

Pros: Colors, sharpness, build.
Cons: 55mm filter...
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 7    Handling: 9    Camera Used: K-3   

Not to bad, not to best. Generaly well build, small distortion. Some minus point - CA, some lenses is sharpness. But Kino series have a lots of fans ... Because this have a "soul". Is a my beloved 28mm, but they must fight with SMC-K 28mm f/3.5

Junior Member

Registered: March, 2014
Posts: 27
Lens Review Date: May 19, 2016 I can recommend this lens: No | Price: None indicated | Rating: 5 

Pros: sharp stopped down
Cons: construction
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 7    Handling: 8    Value: 5    Camera Used: Minolta XG-M, Pentax MX   

Had a few copies of this lens and all I can conclude is to stay away from it!

If the diaphragm isn`t sticky yet, it will be, but in at least half of the copies the diaphragm is already stuck at full open. Cleaning isn`t such a problem, but the construction simply sucks.

Full open the lens is practically unusable, there is a lot of `blooming` of highlights so stopping down to f2.8 is needed. The results are much better at f2.8 and at f5.6 it might be one of the sharpest 28mm. However it makes no sense to get a f2 lens in case you`re not really using it at f2 all the copies I used were clean, no haze or dust inside.

If you`re interested in getting a Vivitar 28mm f2, try to find the Komine close focusing version since they don`t have the problem with sticky blades, and the close focus distance is a nice bonus. They are much more rare though. Or simply get the Pentax K 28/3.5.
New Member

Registered: July, 2015
Posts: 1
Lens Review Date: May 8, 2016 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $110.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: sharp, light, nice price.
Cons: CA
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 10    Value: 10   

Very good lens, sharp even @F2.0, good colors (for an old lens), CA-ok just do not shoot in to the sun.
Learn how to use manual lenses and buy this one you'll b happy with it.
Here is some examples of what one could do with it:

Thank you.

Again, stop reading DP review forums.
Junior Member

Registered: March, 2016
Posts: 41
Lens Review Date: April 24, 2016 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $100.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Build quality f/2
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 9    Value: 10    Camera Used: K3ii and LX etc.   

Nice fast wide good for careful compositions and close ups,
bokeh is what it is and the colour rendition a little retro but it's generally superb.
Mine has slightly oily blades but still works ok, might clean it sometime.

Buy one.
New Member

Registered: June, 2011
Posts: 15

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: September 7, 2015 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $125.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Sharpness
Cons: non

I got a rare PKA version of this lens and it is in near mint condition. It blows away all my other 28mm lens even the M28 f2.
It s just superb sharp as a tack even wide open with great colours and contrast one of my better purchases
Site Supporter

Registered: November, 2010
Location: California
Posts: 2,223

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: January 10, 2015 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $300.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Fine and well built lens in the K mount, colors, sharp
Cons: K mount, it needs stop down with green button
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: k3   

Jan. 15, 2015 Update:

I got this same lens in PKA, so I will be posting photos of it. I will also describe the difference it makes not having to use the green button for stopping down.
I have had this lens for more than three years. This is a great lens, I bought it when I could not find the Pentax K28/2.8. Finally, i found the Pentax K, but after few months, I sold it and kept this nice lens. Not because it is shaper than the Pentax K28/2, but because I like the result better. I also have it in the M42 mount under Vivitar. I will be posting photos soon.

Kiron28mmf2-AfternonLight1-1 by Palenquero, on Flickr

Hall by Palenquero, on Flickr

The View by Palenquero, on Flickr

Pupuseria by Palenquero, on Flickr

Mercado by Palenquero, on Flickr

These samples was taken with the Vivitar version:
Coconut Oil by Palenquero, on Flickr

The flower and the bee by Palenquero, on Flickr

The white flower by Palenquero, on Flickr

Markers by Palenquero, on Flickr

Canada Dry by Palenquero, on Flickr

Some more recent photos:


Watercolorist1-1 by Palenquero, on Flickr


Friendly Information by Palenquero, on Flickr


Otra Muerte by Palenquero, on Flickr

Registered: August, 2012
Location: Dartmoor, UK
Posts: 2,178

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: January 2, 2015 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $50.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: Sharp enough wide open. Very sharp stopped down.
Cons: Slightly cooler than natural colour rendering.
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 7    Handling: 10    Value: 10   

I picked the Kiron 28mm up for a very reasonable price in an online auction, hoping that it would serve as a slightly wider f/2.0 alternative to my Super Takumar 35mm/2.0. And the fact that the Kiron can hold its head high in the company of my Takumars is a testament to just how good this lens really is.

It's useably sharp wide open and extremely sharp stopped down, with negligible chromatic aberration that's easily correctable. Out of focus areas aren't rendered with quite the smoothness of the very best (and much more expensive) lenses, but there's nothing objectionable about the bokeh for the price.

The colour rendering on my copy seems slightly on the cool side of natural, but that's easy to tweak in post processing. Contrast is handled quite naturally, without any excessive exaggeration of edge contrast -- at least at wider apertures. Stopped right down there can be a slight over-emphasis along high contrast edges, but that's really nit-picking. And the chances are that you'll mostly be using this lens at wider apertures anyway, where it will give you naturally rendered raw files without any unpleasant exaggeration of contrast or saturation to cope with in post-processing.

I can highly recommend this as a low-light special, at a focal length that works wonderfully well as a fast "normal" on APS-C.

Registered: April, 2013
Location: the Netherlands
Posts: 2,444

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: July 4, 2014 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $120.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: Sharpness in the center, fast
Cons: Sharpness in corners, flare
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 6    Handling: 8    Value: 8   

I heard many praises about this lens before buying it.
At pixel peeping level I found it perfectly sharp in the center right from f/2.8, but in the corners it never catch up with center, and it's always softer. but that's in Pixel Peeping level! when you look at the photo Normally, it's nice and sharp with good rendering.
It's not flare resistance at all.
Also I didn't like it's Bokeh.

And I found the 28mm focal length an easy and normal FL.

Some photos with this lens:

Breakfast by mtux, on Flickr

f/8, it's flare

The Bench by mtux, on Flickr

An HDR sunset

Sunset by mtux, on Flickr

And a 4 shots pano

Buildings under sunset by mtux, on Flickr
Site Supporter

Registered: April, 2009
Location: Elida, Ohio
Posts: 10,596
Lens Review Date: December 1, 2012 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: None indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: Sharp, Focuses to Infinity just past 2 meters
Cons: Manual focus, no A setting

I have had this lens for just a few months and just completed a month of using it in a "Single in Month" challenge, so I have gotten to know it. This is a fine lens. The sharpness of this lens is incredible, I first noticed when I took a night photo with it and zoomed in on some distant objects. So many lenses are sharp on close objects but lose detail on distant objects, with this lens those details are there along with the color. The lens' color rendition is excellent. I've taken quite a few night pictures with this lens and it produces excellent starbursts. Too bright of lights will cause flare, it doesn't have the coating of a modern lens, I have not found that as a problem that I can't work around, I do use a screw on rubber hood with mine.

I have never been very good with manual focusing. But with a K-30 and focus peaking this works great. But even without focus peaking I can use this lens because infinity focus is very short and the focus ring doesn't go past infinity.

I list Manual focus, no A setting as cons, because if this had an A setting it would be better, and if it were autofocus, it would be perfect. But without them it is still a great lens.

I did not list a price because I got this lens at an estate sale with other items, so the price is not representative of it's worth.

Morning Burn Off by ramseybuckeye, on Flickr
Veteran Member

Registered: June, 2011
Location: Near Sydney, NSW
Posts: 331
Lens Review Date: November 21, 2012 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $185.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Handles beautifully, well made, sharp at f2, makes things look gorgeous
Cons: I actually can't think of what I'd change? If it we f1.4 it'd be great but that'd make it twice the size
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 10    Value: 10   

I didn't start the review of this lens thinking I'd rave about it, but now I think about it, I really don't have a complaint? OK mine is not auto aperture so I have to use manual (or always use it wide open) but this is not the lens's fault. Also I was thinking maybe I'd want wider or tighter, but like... It is what it is. Besides 28 is quite nice on dSLR because it equals almost 43 in the old money, and we all know about the FA 43! Also, on that subject, I took some product shots of my 43 with this lens, and they were just perfect. Beautiful bokeh since I was nice and close to the subject, fantastic colours and just the crispness was fantastic. On high contrast (like white lettering on a black lens), f2.0 sort of 'shines' a bit giving the appearance of lack of sharpness, but it's just a CA thing, the sharpness is absolutely there and then at f2.8 that goes away and the sharpness smacks you in the face.
In summary, for ANY lens, but especially an older, small & light FAST lens at this price, it is outstanding, and I'd need to be getting something special to sell it.

Registered: January, 2011
Location: Paris, France
Posts: 3,193

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: July 30, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $40.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: fast, fully metal, sharp @f2, bokeh, "A" version
Cons: none so far

I got the "A" version of this lense , so i use it on Av mod almost all the time.

Paid it 30 (or 40$ or 25) because the filter area got a choc, so i can't use any filter on it.

A good normal prime for a DSLR.

Optically (tested on a K-x) :

It's good, very good in fact ! i did some "stress test" to look for CA and it has almost none (except if you start doing pixel peeping ...)

It has a 6 blades and so make a hexagonal bokeh if you stop down. fully open, it produce some bokeh in circle, like if you have some dizziness (like the Helios 44 58mm f2 series : )

Other thing :

Exist in A version (which i own)

The lense is fully metal

but it's light (250gr. the 18-55 kit lense is about 220gr)

focusing ring and aperture ring are smooth.

55mm is the filter size.
Veteran Member

Registered: September, 2007
Location: Dayton, Ohio
Posts: 2,979
Lens Review Date: June 26, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $125.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: f2, small size, price, lack of CA/PF
Cons: somewhat soft wideopen (but check images below), PK lens needing manual exposure.

Well, this lens is an f2 lens at 28mm and there aren't too many fast 28mm lenses that can be had for cheap. Impressive CA/PF control for an old lens.

I have many FA, DA limteds and FA*, so relatively this has to be a 8....rating is all realtive anyways.

The following samples were all take at f2, BUT ALL OF THEM POST-PROCESSED INCLUDING SHARPNESS....I did that, as only care what I can get out of the lens at the end after all post processing.

Included some comparison shots with the Tamron 17-50/2.8 and Pentax FA* 28/70/2.8 here:

More images in this thread:
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