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Ricoh Auto Rikenon 55mm F1.4 Review RSS Feed

Ricoh Auto Rikenon 55mm F1.4

Reviews Views Date of last review
3 52,924 Tue February 23, 2016
Recommended By Average Price Average User Rating
100% of reviewers $41.67 8.67
Ricoh Auto Rikenon 55mm F1.4

This lens has a M42 mount, so I use it with an original Pentax K to M42 adapter on both my K-7 and my K-x digital cameras. Aperture from 1,4 to 16.
Minimum focus distance of 0,45 meters.

Produced Riken Optical Corp., Japan
Mount M42 (universal/Pentax screw mount)
Focal length 55mm
Aperture range f1.4-16
Focal range .5m to infinity
Filter thread 55mm
Elements 6 in 4 groups
Aperture blades 6
Weight 10.8oz (306.2g)
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The Auto Sears version of this lens is reviewed here.
Price History:

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Site Supporter

Registered: March, 2011
Location: Fairbanks, AK
Posts: 1,472
Lens Review Date: February 23, 2016 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $25.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: fast, solidly built, sharp!
Cons: focusing ring fairly light
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 9    Value: 10    Camera Used: K-30   

Picked this up on eBay for a song, wanted to play with a fast aperture 55mm other than my Super Tak 55mm to see if I'd like to get a DA*55 f1.4 eventually.

Started off indoors, with Grandpa watching my daughter for the day. Shot at f2.8 I think, maybe wide open as it's a little soft, with a single bare Yongnuo 560iv flash bounced against the wall behind me remoted with a 560TX.

PapaJoe & Charlotte web-8864 by David Dawson, on Flickr

Moved outside for some fresh air, notice a little fringing on the far trees. f5.6

ricoh55 web-8955 by David Dawson, on Flickr


ricoh55 web-8930 by David Dawson, on Flickr


ricoh55 web-8931 by David Dawson, on Flickr


ricoh55 web-8934 by David Dawson, on Flickr

All in all a great little lens. Wish the focusing ring had a little more damping on it so it didn't glide so fast but that's about the only quibble. Colors are nicer than my Super Tak 55 f1.8, and similarly sharp. A great little lens!
Veteran Member

Registered: April, 2010
Location: Southern Ontario
Posts: 343
Lens Review Date: March 9, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $40.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: FAST, Sharp, little CA, LOOONG focus throw
Cons: Size and Weight, 55mm filter thread

This lens is quite nice. It's sharp enough for me, and, as far as I can tell (I don't enlarge beyond 8x12 or look at prints under a microscope) shows no CA. It has no barrel distortion. It has a spectacularly narrow DOF wide open, but this expands significantly past F2.8. I'm not going to deceive, though, I bought this lens to shoot it wide open. It performs very well wide open. I use it on my Spotmatic with B&W film, so I haven't shot it extensively with color. Both times that I have shot color with it I've been impressed. The coating seems to be similar to, and indeed only a small step down quality-wise, from the Super-Takumars. That is to say, it provides life-like colors which will be muted and soft or vivid and contrasty depending on the film and lighting. It's also very resistant to flare, I've shot about 12 rolls of film with it and only seen flare once or twice, outside, wide open, with no hood. A lens that flares ONLY under those conditions has very good flare control in my opinion. I can't say enough about the positive attributes of this lens (and Ricoh products in general) so I'll leave at this-
It is my opinion that Ricoh/Riken, especially during the screw-mount era, was only a step behind Pentax in the race. Quality and performance were top priority, and it shows.

That being said, I have three quibbles. Two with the lens in general and one with my specific copy.
First, it has a 55mm filter thread. Most Pentax Film-era primes use a 49mm thread. If your kit is mostly Pentax film primes, and you like filters, this could be an annoyance. Not a reason to write off the lens, but worth noting.
Second, it is HEAVY. It weights nearly a third of what my spotmatic does, and adds a lot of weight and bulk.
This last one is specific to my lens and could be cured by a CLA if I wasn't a broke student. The focus ring is very stiff, and only loosens after 10-15 minutes of near-continuous use. I believe the grease in the focus ring is congealed. It's a minor annoyance and could be fixed, but if such things bother you consider that you may need to have the lens CLA'd.

In all, a very nice lens. It has a few minor hang-ups, but is a fine piece of optics. I have had friends who shoot expensive Nikon and Canon DSLRs remark on both the build quality and the pictures it produces. I believe it is a fine alternative to the more expensive (and slightly wider) Super-Takumar 50mm 1.4. If you prefer a 55mm lens or less expensive, but still top-notch, optics look no further.

(This lens is, supposedly, the same as the Mamiya-Sekor and Sears 55mm 1.4)
(I would be interested to see if anyone could provide an optical diagram)
Junior Member

Registered: June, 2010
Location: Franeker
Posts: 29
Lens Review Date: March 8, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $60.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: fast, solid built, very good to excellent IQ. Virtually no ca present and very sharp, even wide open
Cons: Focus ring could be a bit "heavier" to adjust; it feels just a bit to "loose".

Very good performer, especially for only 60 dollars. Even wide open almost no ca present and already very sharp. Even though there's no mentioning of any coating on the lens, I had no problems at all, even in demanding circumstances, with ca/flare. And I do not use it with a hood! I'm very pleased with this lens!
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