Ricoh announces new 50mm lenses for K-Mount DSLRs

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Ricoh/Pentax has not backed down from its commitment to the DSLR format, announcing two new 50mm F1.4 lenses built for Pentax K-mount DSLR cameras.

Ricoh says the two new lenses, the HD Pentax-FA 50mm F1.4 and the smc Pentax-FA 50mm F1.4 Classic, are 'similar…but different,' and are both based on a 1991 film version of the smc Pentax-FA 50mm F1.4 lens.

Both lenses have the same 50mm focal length, the same minimum focus distance of 0.45m, and the same eight rounded diaphragm blades. Both also have a water repellent coating on their front elements and weigh around 220g.

Image: Ricoh
Image: Ricoh

Where the two lenses differ is in their appearance and how they manage changing light.

The smc Pentax-FA 50mm F1.4 Classic is designed to be closer in style to film lenses from the 1990s, and has less control over flaring when shot wide open.

The Classic retains the exterior design of the original smc 50mm F1.4, with a black matte finish and a matte-black focus ring. It has no green ring — the 'symbolic' design of recent Pentax digital-specific lenses — to recreate the nostalgic appearance of an old-time lens from the film-format SLR era.

The HD Pentax-FA 50mm F1.4 on the other hand minimises flaring with the addition of an 'HD coating', which Ricoh says improves contrast and edge-to-edge sharpness.

No local pricing or availability for the new glass has been announced as yet, but in the US the lenses will retail for $349.95 USD ($525 AUD) and $379.95 USD ($570 AUD), respectively. The new lenses will be available mid-June.

You can find out more about the new glass on the Ricoh website. 

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