REVIEW SNAPSHOT®

by PowerReviews
PentaxNormal SMCP-FA 50mm f/1.4 Autofocus Lens
 
4.8

(based on 139 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (112)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (25)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (0)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (1)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (1)

98%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Lightweight (98)
  • Fast / accurate auto-focus (80)
  • Consistent output (61)
  • Easily interchangeable (58)
  • Durable (47)

Cons

  • Slow focus (6)
  • Blurry focus (4)
  • Weak casing (3)

Best Uses

  • Portraits (58)
  • Night photography (57)
  • Low light (51)
  • General purpose (41)
  • Weddings (27)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Enthusiast (49), Photo enthusiast (26), Casual photographer (14), Semi-professional (14), Semi-pro photographer (10)
    • Was this a gift?:
    • No (43)

Most Liked Positive Review

 

Should be Pentax's kit lens

I use this lens primarily as a general purpose lens, shooting mostly candid portraits in available light. I use this a lot to take portraits indoors and don't find it at all long....Read complete review

I use this lens primarily as a general purpose lens, shooting mostly candid portraits in available light. I use this a lot to take portraits indoors and don't find it at all long. After using the excellent 16-45/4 for a year I found that 90% of my shots were at 45mm f/4 and as high an ISO as I could stand (the others at 16mm mostly.) This told me I needed a faster lens, and this delivers in strides. This is a cheap (cost), compact lens which performs well above its price. The DOF is super thin at 1.4-2 but this is both a blessing and curse. It does not include a hood and the element is very close to the front, so it can benefit from a hood regarding flare. It is a much better solution than the m50mm/f2.0 I was given and the FA50 is ridiculously sharp by 2, and very usable at 1.4. When you couple this with in body shake reduction you can practically shoot in the dark, with usable results. The 1.6 crop factor doesn't bother me since I found that on 35mm film (Canon 50/1.8) I often found that I should have cropped closer and this focal length matches what I expect to see in the viewfinder when I put it to my eye, rather than having to move. All in all an incredible value, and I think that a fast lens like this needs to be at very last, the second lens you own.

VS

Most Liked Negative Review

 

I Wish I Could Agree

I was in NYC last week and purchased this lens at B & H. I was excited to start using it on my K 10D, especially in low light. The photos are not...Read complete review

I was in NYC last week and purchased this lens at B & H. I was excited to start using it on my K 10D, especially in low light. The photos are not sharp. In fact, there is a lot of softness at 1.4. I tried using it last night to shoot a high school concert in existing light. The photos continued to be blurred. Fortunately, I had my other 2.8 lenses which photographed the concert sharply. This 1.4 lens produces sharper photos outdoors and when I use the popup flash. I welcome other comments and, hopefully, will learn from the photographers on this site.

Reviewed by 139 customers

Sort by

Displaying reviews 1-20

Back to top

Previous | Next »

 
5.0

Nice Lens

By Seattle Photog

from Seattle WA

About Me Photo Enthusiast

Verified Buyer

Pros

  • Nice Bokeh

Cons

    Best Uses

      Comments about Pentax Normal SMCP-FA 50mm f/1.4 Autofocus Lens:

      Amazing Bokeh and super sharp! Beautiful lens!

      • Was this a gift?:
      • No

      Share this review

       
      5.0

      The lens has greater resolution

      By Tazman

      from El Cerrito, CA

      About Me Casual Photographer

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

      • Easily Interchangeable

      Cons

        Best Uses

          Comments about Pentax Normal SMCP-FA 50mm f/1.4 Autofocus Lens:

          The lens has greater resolution that the one that come with the body originally, and with is faster.

          • Was this a gift?:
          • No

          Share this review

          (1 of 8 customers found this review helpful)

           
          5.0

          great portrait lens

          By Bob

          from NJ

          About Me Photo Enthusiast

          Pros

          • Consistent Output
          • Durable
          • Easily Interchangeable
          • Lightweight

          Cons

            Best Uses

            • Indoors/Low Light
            • Weddings/Events

            Comments about Pentax Normal SMCP-FA 50mm f/1.4 Autofocus Lens:

            I use this lens to take pictures of my kids on trips, family parties, and social functions. The lens takes great pics of scenery in background as with a f 1.4 you have so much control of depth of field. Pictures are consistently sharp and professional looking. Lightweight and easy to change in a hurry. By far my favorite lens.

            • Was this a gift?:
            • No

            Share this review

             
            4.0

            really nice lens

            By cameramom

            from Goodyear, AZ

            About Me Photo Enthusiast

            Verified Buyer

            Pros

            • Lightweight
            • Nice Bokeh

            Cons

            • Slow Focus

            Best Uses

            • Indoors/Low Light

            Comments about Pentax Normal SMCP-FA 50mm f/1.4 Autofocus Lens:

            I really like this lens. The bokeh is great. I have had it for a few weeks and haven't taken it off my camera yet!

            • Was this a gift?:
            • No

            Share this review

            (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

             
            5.0

            So much perfection!

            By LaurenOE

            from Orlando, Florida

            About Me Semi-pro Photographer

            Verified Buyer

            Pros

            • Classic Design
            • Distance Scale
            • Fast / accurate auto-focus
            • Full Frame Compatible
            • Holds its value
            • Nice Bokeh
            • Strong Construction

            Cons

            • Getting More Expensive

            Best Uses

            • Indoors/Low Light
            • Landscape/Scenery
            • Night Photography
            • Sports/Action
            • Video

            Comments about Pentax Normal SMCP-FA 50mm f/1.4 Autofocus Lens:

            The fact that this lens is still in production, testifies to how good it is. The colors, IQ, sharpness and the build quality make this a must have lens if you are a Pentaxian. I love that this is a screw drive lens without any hint of weakness. I love the metal lens mount. I love the aperture ring. Such a great piece of glass.

            • Was this a gift?:
            • No

            Share this review

            (2 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

             
            5.0

            Love this 50

            By Jay S.

            from Diamond Bar, Ca

            About Me Casual Photographer

            Pros

            • Consistent Output
            • Durable
            • Fast / accurate auto-focus
            • Nice Bokeh

            Cons

              Best Uses

              • Indoors/Low Light
              • Landscape/Scenery
              • Wildlife Photos

              Comments about Pentax Normal SMCP-FA 50mm f/1.4 Autofocus Lens:

              I bought this 50 to pair with my K-5 IIs body and I couldn't be happier. Its versatile and takes really nice pictures. I will eventually want a zoom lens for my K-5 iis, but in the meantime this lens will stay as my walk around. So, far my only complaint is that its not waterproof, other than that the lens feels heavy and solid.

              • Was this a gift?:
              • No

              Share this review

              (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

               
              4.0

              excellent

              By Dan

              from Melbourne, Australia

              About Me Semi-pro Photographer

              Verified Buyer

              Pros

              • Durable
              • Lightweight
              • Very Sharp When Focused

              Cons

              • Inconsistent Focus On K-x

              Best Uses

              • Indoors/Low Light
              • Portrait

              Comments about Pentax Normal SMCP-FA 50mm f/1.4 Autofocus Lens:

              i bought this lens to supplement my 18-55 and 55-300 which i have used very actively on my k-x (i have taken over 50,000 pictures with the camera). i also have the M 50mm 1.7, but i thought it was time to get something with AF. I wanted it mainly for pictures (portraits) of my kids, and also for product shots which i do from time to time.

              anyway, lens came, but very quickly i realised that it wasn't focusing perfectly. i have had the same issues with a tamron 17-50 2.8 and a sigma 17-50 2.8. occasionally lens focuses perfectly, but mostly a little in front. i made some adjustments to my camera using the debug mode. it helped, but surprisingly only at 1.4 (when focus is most critical), but ultimately i could not rely on it to focus every time, like i can with my other lenses. judging from my experience with the tamron and sigma lenses, i do believe it is the k-x's fault, which seems to prioritise speed over accuracy, and this is telling at f1.4.

              i assume it will work better on the k-5, and i have considered buying it, but i don't want any more headaches with this, so i it back, to B&H, thanks to their 30 day money back guarantee.

              i must add, that when it did get the focus right, the pictures are beautiful, although f1.4 is a little "hazy" and lacking in contrast (but this can be improved drastically in post-processing). at f5.6 its absolutely sharp, edge to edge. in fact, when viewed at 100 on screen, you cant tell if what you are seeing is 100% or not!

              lens is compact and sturdily built, with a dense feel to it

              focus is fast

              • Was this a gift?:
              • No

              Share this review

              (0 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

               
              4.0

              Fast Nifty Fifty

              By SH

              from Shanghai, China

              About Me Photography Student

              Verified Buyer

              Pros

              • Lightweight

              Cons

                Best Uses

                • Indoors/Low Light
                • Macro Photography
                • Night Photography

                Comments about Pentax Normal SMCP-FA 50mm f/1.4 Autofocus Lens:

                I mainly got it as a cheaper macro by reversing the lens with a K-mount adaptor.

                It is one of the more expensive 50mm lenses, but it's a F/1.4.

                • Was this a gift?:
                • No

                Share this review

                 
                5.0

                I´m happy and I would buy again

                By ruiz

                from caracas Ven

                Verified Buyer

                Comments about Pentax Normal SMCP-FA 50mm f/1.4 Autofocus Lens:

                no comments

                Share this review

                (0 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                4.0

                Purchased for indoor use, without Flash

                By Rob-48

                from NSW country, Australia

                About Me Casual Photographer

                Verified Buyer

                Pros

                • Consistent Output
                • Durable
                • Easily Interchangeable
                • Lightweight
                • Nice Bokeh

                Cons

                  Best Uses

                  • Indoors/Low Light
                  • Landscape/Scenery

                  Comments about Pentax Normal SMCP-FA 50mm f/1.4 Autofocus Lens:

                  on my K-01 MILC, it operates as well as can be expected, given the trashy focussing of the K-01

                  on my 35mm SLR film cameras, this lens is brilliant.
                  it takes great pics indoors, without flash, with lovely bokeh
                  it does the job i bought it for

                  • Was this a gift?:
                  • No

                  Share this review

                  (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                   
                  5.0

                  Great lenses!

                  By MissouriGuy

                  from Kansas City

                  About Me Photo Enthusiast

                  Verified Buyer

                  Pros

                  • Consistent Output
                  • Durable
                  • Easily Interchangeable
                  • Fast / accurate auto-focus
                  • Nice Bokeh
                  • Rugged

                  Cons

                    Best Uses

                    • Indoors/Low Light
                    • Night Photography
                    • Sports/Action
                    • Weddings/Events

                    Comments about Pentax Normal SMCP-FA 50mm f/1.4 Autofocus Lens:

                    I read many reviews before purchasing this lenses and it truly is a great little lens! It has not been off my camera since buying it. Very sharp from f2 on and higher. Fast focus! Well made. I highly recommend this lenses for general purpose and portrait photography. If you want great pictures you need to zoom with your feet! Haha

                    • Was this a gift?:
                    • No

                    Share this review

                     
                    5.0

                    Recommend for Portriats

                    By TheresaK

                    from Fargo, ND

                    About Me Casual Photographer

                    Verified Buyer

                    Pros

                    • Lightweight
                    • Nice Bokeh

                    Cons

                      Best Uses

                      • Indoors/Low Light

                      Comments about Pentax Normal SMCP-FA 50mm f/1.4 Autofocus Lens:

                      Great pictures, good lens!

                      • Was this a gift?:
                      • No

                      Share this review

                       
                      4.0

                      Good for the price!

                      By Bard Wasp

                      from Boise ID

                      About Me Photo Enthusiast

                      Verified Buyer

                      Pros

                      • Fast / accurate auto-focus
                      • Lightweight
                      • Nice Bokeh

                      Cons

                        Best Uses

                        • Indoors/Low Light
                        • Landscape/Scenery
                        • Weddings/Events

                        Comments about Pentax Normal SMCP-FA 50mm f/1.4 Autofocus Lens:

                        I bought this for both low light situations and for amature portrates of my grandkids and family. I've only got to mess around with it for one day for the later but loved the results. I was looking at it's newer brother and one by another company but what swayed me was the difference in cost.

                        • Was this a gift?:
                        • No

                        Share this review

                        (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                         
                        5.0

                        Great all around lens

                        By Rolis

                        from Fort Collin CO

                        About Me Photography Student

                        Pros

                        • Fast / accurate auto-focus
                        • Nice Bokeh

                        Cons

                          Best Uses

                          • Indoors/Low Light
                          • Night Photography
                          • Weddings/Events

                          Comments about Pentax Normal SMCP-FA 50mm f/1.4 Autofocus Lens:

                          Purchased this lens and very happy. However, i kept reading about how soft it was at f1.4 Then i read in a camera forum that part of the problem was the lack of a lens hood. They noted technical reasons for it so i bought one and it does seem to be sharper.

                          • Was this a gift?:
                          • No

                          Share this review

                          (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                           
                          4.0

                          So Far So Good

                          By bri49

                          from New Jersey

                          About Me Semi-pro Photographer

                          Verified Buyer

                          Pros

                          • Consistent Output
                          • Lightweight
                          • Nice Bokeh

                          Cons

                            Best Uses

                            • Indoors/Low Light
                            • Portraits

                            Comments about Pentax Normal SMCP-FA 50mm f/1.4 Autofocus Lens:

                            I recently bought this lens to go with my new Pentax K-5. Coming from the Olympus system I was spoiled by the quality of my Oly 50mm. This lens does not dissapoint. Very fast autofocus, sharp, sharp images at f/4 onward but even decent at f/1.4 with very nice bokeh. The only negative (the reason for 4.5 instead of 5 stars) is the tendency for CA appearing around edges of sharply contrasting objects. This is typical of lenses originally designed for film cameras- something I was not aware of.

                            • Was this a gift?:
                            • No

                            Share this review

                            (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                             
                            5.0

                            First Non-Kit Lens

                            By rickalamos

                            from Los Alamos, NM

                            About Me Casual Photographer

                            Verified Buyer

                            Pros

                            • Easily Interchangeable
                            • Fast / accurate auto-focus
                            • Nice Bokeh

                            Cons

                              Best Uses

                              • Details
                              • Indoors/Low Light
                              • Night Photography

                              Comments about Pentax Normal SMCP-FA 50mm f/1.4 Autofocus Lens:

                              I purchased the SMCP-FA 50mm f/1.4 lens to begin to explore depth of field and low light photography and have not been disappointed. As a beginner this lens is greatly expanding my knowledge by allowing me to quickly make and see the changes from adjusting iso, aperture and exposure and it has been fun adjusting the settings in Manual mode on my Pentax k-r.

                              • Was this a gift?:
                              • No

                              Share this review

                               
                              4.0

                              Normal SMCP-FA 50mm f/1.4 Autofocus Lens

                              By Belgi

                              from Switzerland

                              About Me Photo Enthusiast

                              Verified Buyer

                              Pros

                              • Consistent Output
                              • Durable
                              • Easily Interchangeable
                              • Fast / accurate auto-focus
                              • Lightweight

                              Cons

                                Best Uses

                                • Indoors/Low Light
                                • Sports/Action

                                Comments about Pentax Normal SMCP-FA 50mm f/1.4 Autofocus Lens:

                                Good value for money. Very effectif in situations where there is not a lot of light.

                                • Was this a gift?:
                                • No

                                Share this review

                                 
                                5.0

                                Great general and portrait lens

                                By JRo

                                from Worcester, MA

                                About Me Photo Enthusiast

                                Verified Buyer

                                Pros

                                • Consistent Output
                                • Easily Interchangeable
                                • Lightweight
                                • Nice Bokeh

                                Cons

                                  Best Uses

                                  • Indoors/Low Light
                                  • Landscape/Scenery
                                  • Macro Photography
                                  • Night Photography
                                  • Sports/Action

                                  Comments about Pentax Normal SMCP-FA 50mm f/1.4 Autofocus Lens:

                                  I'm a hobby photographer and I've been looking at this lens for a while... I finally bought it and I must say I'm impressed. It's great not only for low light, but also for some macro and portrait photography. One word of warning... If you have an APS-C sensor, this lens is about a 75mm equivalent, so the image will be a bit more zoomed in than you might expect. That being said, it's still an awesome lens.

                                  • Was this a gift?:
                                  • No

                                  Share this review

                                  (5 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

                                   
                                  5.0

                                  Pretty not in its look but what it sees!

                                  By Copo

                                  from Sydney, Australia

                                  About Me Photo Enthusiast

                                  Verified Buyer

                                  Pros

                                  • Consistent Output
                                  • Easily Interchangeable
                                  • Fast / accurate auto-focus
                                  • Lightweight
                                  • Nice Bokeh
                                  • Strong Construction

                                  Cons

                                    Best Uses

                                    • Indoors/Low Light
                                    • Night Photography
                                    • Weddings/Events

                                    Comments about Pentax Normal SMCP-FA 50mm f/1.4 Autofocus Lens:

                                    I bought it mainly for the fact that I always have a thing for fast primes. Having recently bought a Pentax K-r, so I thought why not shop for a prime?

                                    First of all B&H really has the best price on most things (even including Shipping to Austrlia), customer service is also top notch.

                                    Now to the lens, to sum it up - get it before there's another price hike (the SMC FA 50mm 1.4 used to sell for $200), you won't be disappointed.

                                    The sharpness in the center is good right from f1.4 to excellent when stopped down to f4-f8. It's contrasty, it really brings colours to life (some may complain that it is a little bit on the warm side but I find warm better than cold).

                                    I cannot comment on the focal length, you either love it or you don't - it suits me perfect for indoor head and shoulder shots and most street photos where I want to isolate the subject.

                                    Autofocus (used with the K-r) is good to excellent depending on the lighting condition, accuracy is as good as any other lens in the price range (this is dependent on the on the camera body of course).

                                    Some say it's a shame that it doesn't come with a hood, I don't find that I need one, it resists flare extremely well.

                                    Ok I wish the barrel was mostly metal - if it was I would have gladly paid another $150 for it. But the build quality is very good as it is though, I certainly don't have to babysit it.

                                    To recap - get it!

                                    • Was this a gift?:
                                    • No

                                    Share this review

                                    (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                                     
                                    5.0

                                    Incredible all-around lens

                                    By wd_s_2000

                                    from Greensboro, NC, USA

                                    About Me Photo Enthusiast

                                    Verified Reviewer

                                    Pros

                                    • Consistent Output
                                    • Durable
                                    • Fast / accurate auto-focus
                                    • Lightweight
                                    • Nice Bokeh

                                    Cons

                                      Best Uses

                                      • Indoors/Low Light
                                      • Landscape/Scenery
                                      • Night Photography

                                      Comments about Pentax Normal SMCP-FA 50mm f/1.4 Autofocus Lens:

                                      Good overall use lens. Used extensively in travel for indoor/low-light situations (museums, etc...) Allows you to shoot most situations with ambient light at higher iso and gives a narrower FOV. Color rendering and resolution of this lens is incredible. General outdoor travel photography is great as well. Good color rendering and bokeh. No zoom, but most people shooting a DSLR will have a selection of lenses to choose from. I'm always amazed when I first look at shots taken with this lens. If you get a good copy, hold on to it!

                                      • Was this a gift?:
                                      • No

                                      Share this review

                                      Displaying reviews 1-20

                                      Back to top

                                      Previous | Next »