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Lens Review, SMC-Pentax-DA 18-55mm 1:3.5~56 AL

SMC-Pentax-DA 18-55mm 1:3.5~56 AL, The Kit Lens
Image making with an SMC-Pentax-DA 13.5~56 18-55mm AL (2008), the kit lens for APS-C Pentax DSLR cameras.

The SMC Pentax-DA 18-55mm 1:3.5~5.6 AL, with an identifying green band on the barrel and distance scales in both imperial and metric distance on the focusing ring, is sold only as a standard kit lens for APS-C Pentax digital SLR cameras. The lens has a 35mm equivalent focal length of 27–82.5mm, takes 52mm filters, and is constructed with an optical formula of 12 elements in 9 groups. The lens was introduced in 2008 and comes with a hood and a body weight of 220 grams

Though designated as a kit-only lens, built light and possibly at the lowest cost, the lens is not of the same creed as most others from different manufacturers, the lens was designed with more in mind. This includes a greater emphasis on built and construction, a non-rotating front element for filter users, and the Quick-Shift Focus System that allows for a full-time manual focus while the lens is in autofocus mode, features worthy consideration for serious photographers.

SMC-Pentax-DA 18-55mm 1:3.5~56 AL
SMC-Pentax-DA 18-55mm 1:3.5~56 AL

The lens is a screw drive, so do expect it to be slightly noisy, nothing obstructive. For the review, the lens was mounted on an equally vintage 10MP CCD Pentax K-m, another camera of excellent repute. The setup is part of my 'Re-Living The CCD Sensor' series. Pentax later updated the lens to the SMC-Pentax-DA 13.5~56 18-55mm AL II.

Pentax K-m, SMC-Pentax-DA 18-55mm 1:3.5~56 AL

With both accolades as well as brick-bats all around, including a nomination for its manual focus ring being the best in its class, the lens enjoyed a Sharpness rating of 7.1, Aberrations at 7.1, Bokeh at 6.7, Autofocus at 7.7, Handling at 8.3, and Value at 8.7 on Pentax Forums.



Early Images

SMC-Pentax-DA 18-55mm 1:3.5~56 AL Lens Review 01
SMC-Pentax-DA 18-55mm 1:3.5~56 AL Lens Review 02
SMC-Pentax-DA 18-55mm 1:3.5~56 AL Lens Review 03
SMC-Pentax-DA 18-55mm 1:3.5~56 AL Lens Review 04
Excellent captures in AF Macro Mode
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SMC-Pentax-DA 18-55mm 1:3.5~56 AL Lens Review 05
SMC-Pentax-DA 18-55mm 1:3.5~56 AL Lens Review 06
SMC-Pentax-DA 18-55mm 1:3.5~56 AL Lens Review 07
SMC-Pentax-DA 18-55mm 1:3.5~56 AL Lens Review 08
SMC-Pentax-DA 18-55mm 1:3.5~56 AL Lens Review 09
SMC-Pentax-DA 18-55mm 1:3.5~56 AL Lens Review 10
SMC-Pentax-DA 18-55mm 1:3.5~56 AL Lens Review 11
SMC-Pentax-DA 18-55mm 1:3.5~56 AL Lens Review 12
Sharp, mid-tone colors in AF Zoom mode
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Pentax K-m, SMC-Pentax-DA 18-55mm 1:3.5~56 AL

The lens is a low-cost buy on the big bay auctions, where a collection is still available as a single item or bundled with a camera as a kit. A worthy buy if you are not too concerned with it being the latest from the manufacturer or one that everybody is clamoring about.



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