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Pentax M-40~80 compared

The Pentax M40~80 is a nice zoom lens, capable of close-up shots (with a special setting). I compared this lens on several focal lengths to:

  • Pentax M40 pancake
  • Pentax FA 43 limited
  • Pentax M50 1.4
  • Pentax DA70 Limited
  • Pentax M85

Test was done in the back yard, sunny weather and ~ 1m distance.
Next: each row is the 40-80 lens at a given focal length, followed by a fixed focal lens, click the thumbnails for 1500×1000 pixel versions;

M40~80 @ 40mm:


M40~80 @ 43mm:

FA43mm Limited:

M40~80 @ 50mm:

M50 1.4:

M40~80 @ 70mm:


DA 70mm Limited:

M40~80 @ 80mm:




Some conclusions:

  • M40~80 and M40 fail the test and produce lesser quality images, both in sharpness and bokeh
  • FA43 should have done a lot better, sharpness fails a bit, bokeh is not super and the 3d effect is not there! Soon to be tested again…
  • M50 and M85 are marvels, I’ll never sell them. M85 has the best bokeh of all, inspite of having only 6 diaph. blades.
  • DA70 is a very nice lens, a keeper!