Pentax has announced the DA 50mm f/1.8, an affordable telephoto prime lens for APS-C interchangeable lens cameras. The lens offers a 76.5mm equivalent field of view on the company's DSLRs or K-01 cameras. The lens is designed to look like Pentax's premium 'Limited' prime lenses but features a plastic lens mount. The lens is only 38.5mm long at its shortest, and will sell for around $249.95/€269/£249, making it a small and relatively inexpensive addition to a camera bag.

The lens doesn't use the internal focusing method that underpins most lenses that are quick to focus with contrast detection AF, so we would not expect great performance with the K-01.


Press Release:

PENTAX Introduces smc DA 50mm f/1.8 Medium-Telephoto Lens

Denver, CO (May 21, 2012) – PENTAX RICOH IMAGING AMERICAS CORPORATION today announces the introduction of its new smc PENTAX-DA 50mm f/1.8 medium-telephoto autofocus lens, which is designed exclusively for use with the company’s K-mount interchangeable-lens (ILC) digital cameras. Thanks to state-of-the-art optical design technology from PENTAX, the lens’ image coverage is optimized for PENTAX K-mount ILC cameras to deliver sharp, clear images from edge to edge. With a sleek, modern look and a lightweight body, the new PENTAX-DA 50mm f/1.8 lens was designed with versatility and flexibility in mind and is ideal for photographers of varying levels, from amateurs to professionals.

“The new PENTAX-DA 50mm f/1.8 lens is ideal for photographers interested in portraiture and general photography,” explains John Carlson, Sr., Manager of Sales and Marketing, PENTAX RICOH IMAGING AMERICAS CORPORATION. “The lens measures just 1.5 inches long and weighs only 4.3 ounces, making it small enough and light enough to accompany photographers on all kinds of outings.”

When mounted on a PENTAX K-mount ILC camera body, the PENTAX-DA 50mm f/F1.8 lens delivers a focal length of 50mm or 76.5mm in the 35mm format. The lens’ f/1.8 maximum aperture and round diaphragm blades enable it to produce a natural “bokeh” (out-of-focus) effect, which gives the blurry elements in an image a softer, rounded and more pleasing appearance. Additionally, the f/1.8 aperture makes it possible to increase camera shutter speed when photographing in poorly lit conditions, which minimizes camera shake and helps eliminate blur.

For extra preventative measures, the front surface of the PENTAX-DA 50mm f/1.8 lens is treated with the company’s original SP (Super Protect) coating, which repels dust, water, grease, and other substances that may adhere to the surface of the lens. The protective coating promotes trouble-free use in all kinds of shooting situations.

The PENTAX-DA 50mm f/1.8 lens will be available July 2012 with a retail price of $249.95.