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Monday, January 15, 2024

Five Frames, Pentax K-m + SMC Pentax-A Zoom 35-70mm 1:4, First Impression

Pentax K-m + SMC Pentax-A Zoom 35-70mm 1:4, First Impression 01
Pentax K-m + SMC Pentax-A Zoom 35-70mm 1:4, First Impression 02
Pentax K-m + SMC Pentax-A Zoom 35-70mm 1:4, First Impression 03
Pentax K-m + SMC Pentax-A Zoom 35-70mm 1:4, First Impression 04
Pentax K-m + SMC Pentax-A Zoom 35-70mm 1:4, First Impression 05
The CCD Sensor, image making with an SMC Pentax-A Zoom 35-70mm 1:4, on 10MP CCD Pentax K-m, first impression.
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A quick take with the small, compact, and beautifully designed SMC Pentax-A Zoom 35-70mm 1:4, the only 35-70mm Pentax lens with fixed aperture. The lens is a 7-element in 7-groups construction, solidly built, and enjoys a Sharpness rating of 8.3, Aberrations at 7.9, Bokeh at 8.1, Handling at 8.5, and Value at 8.9 on PentaxForums. Reviews on its sharpness and image quality, which are good, colorful, and contrasty, seem to be arching towards the accolades. 

I have yet to take the lens anywhere except for the garden, and the few images here, shot in Program mode with the lens aperture setting set to 'A', seem to reflect the thoughts of the forum. On the 10.2MP CCD K-m, the lens is equivalent to (about) a 50-105mm zoom on a 35mm full-frame camera, a good range to have if you are into city walks and street shooting. The lens should be in good company with the 18-55mm autofocus AL, which came as a kit lens with the camera.

Pentax K-m, SMC Pentax-A Zoom 35-70mm 1:4
Pentax K-m, SMC Pentax-A Zoom 35-70mm 1:4

Setting up a manual focus lens on the KAF2 mount of the K-m body is straightforward, all you have to do next is to set the aperture setting on the lens to 'A', and register the focal length of the lens with the camera. The request for this input is displayed on the LCD screen as you switch the camera on after installing the lens. I input 50 as the focal length of the zoom, and it works.

The flashing LED and audible focus confirmation beep of the K-m (also available on other camera make and models) is one of the aids I look for when using the camera with a manual focus lens, which I put at being almost akin to having focus peaking on mirrorless digital SLR cameras. Good thought!



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