Pentax DA 55-300mm f/4-5.8 ED

Last updated (17 May’10):
- Review by PopPhoto

Pentax DA 55-300mm f/4-5.8 ED is a telephoto zoom lens features 55-300mm at focal length with maximum aperture of f/4 to 5.8. The lens construction has 12 elements in 8 groups with angle of view at 29 to 5.4 degrees (when used with Pentax digital SLR camera body). Closest focusing distance at 4.6 feet and has a filter size of 58mm. The Pentax DA 55-300mm f/4-5.8 ED lens weighs 15.5 ounces and it measures 2.8 inches in diameter and 4.4 inches long.

Pentax DA 55-300mm f/4-5.8 ED
Overall Rating: ★★★★☆ | Latest Price Info


Expert Reviews

Pentax DA 55-300mm f/4-5.8 ED Reviews

PopPhoto reviews the Pentax DA 55-300mm f/4-5.8 ED and writes;
“If you can take the sluggish AF, this lens will reward you with unusually reach, excellent optics, and favorable pricing. Yes, you could go to a 14X super zoom like the Pentax 18-250mm, but you may not like the image quality or the higher price tag! “
Rating: ★★★☆☆

PentaxForums reviews the Pentax DA 55-300mm f/4-5.8 ED and writes;
“Taking price into account, I give this lens a 9 (deducting for loud, often hunting AF). Bright, contrasty and fast enough to capture most stationary/slightly moving things at a distance (stays f/4.5 until 210mm, then f/5.6 until 290mm). Images are sharp even wide open, which is a BIG plus for me. “
Rating: ★★★★½

Photozone.de reviews the Pentax DA 55-300mm f/4-5.8 ED and writes;
“The Pentax SMC DA 55-300mm f/4-5.8 ED is a viable choice when it comes to an affordable long range tele lens. The resolution figures are pretty decent and in field conditions it shines with a snappy contrast characteristic. The secondary characteristics (vignetting, distortions, CAs) are about average for a lens in this class. All-in-all it is optically superior compared to its smaller cousin, the SMC DA 50-200mm f/4-5.6 ED. The build quality of the lens is fine and the AF is fast enough for most applications. A sound offer relative to its pricing. “
Rating: ★★★☆☆

User Opinions

Pentax DA 55-300mm f/4-5.8 ED User Reviews

Sharp, clear telephoto, | Rating: ★★★★★
“I purchased this for my K10D. I wasn’t satisfied with either the reach or the clarity of my Pentax DA 55-200mm lense. This lense gets me closer and clearer on the subject. I must note that the construction is somewhat plastic-y compared with the lenses of my Pentax Me-Super. Just doesn’t have the heft of those older lenses. However, this doesn’t affect the performance. Good color, fairly quick focus (although there is some occaisional ‘hunting’ going on; is that a trait of the K10D?). The lense isn’t a great low-light performer, but for day-lit, long distance subjects it will do the job. “ – by James A. Herring “All-around

Great lens.. great value | Rating: ★★★★★
“I take a lot of wildlife photos and need the reach. I bought this lens to replace a Pentax 55 – 200 mm I was using on my Pentax K10D. The extra reach is great and the lens is noticably sharper. The auto focusing is spot on and fast. The lens is heavier than the one I replaced, but it gives the camera/lens combo a quality feel. Great value from Amazon. I see these much higher elsewhere. “ – by Larry K. Reddig

Excellent pro-sumer telephoto solution for Pentax SLR’s | Rating: ★★★★★
“If you were ever frustrated by the need to reach out further with your photo imaging equipment but can’t afford the mega-bucks required to own one of the big high level prime telephoto lens, this little guy may be your solution. It’s 55-300mm reach is not only very respectable and useful, but the quality of the image that you get over the range of it’s zoom at all stops is also surprisingly high!. I own the Tamron 70-300 Macro as well, but was never really satsified with the lack of sharpness and contrast – even though I did like its separate macro mode. But the Pentax 55-300 is way ahead in terms of sharpness and contrast and its focusing speed is quite satsifactory. I now feel I have a pro-sumer level product that is well-worth the few extra bucks over the similar products offered by 3rd party lens producers for Pentax. Buy this one in confidence that you’ll get everything you pay for plus some very pleasant surprises in the quality of your photos.” – by R. Jones “Coffee Hound”

Excellent Lens | Rating: ★★★★★
“Great for getting closeups of birds in flight, in trees, and various other sights. Works flawlessly! Great price and fast shipping. Completely satisfied! “ – by Verle Wright

Affordable Quality | Rating: ★★★★★
“I originally purchased the DA 50-200mm lens as a compact companion to the kit 18-55mm AL II, but since I wanted something with a little more reach, I decided to add the DA 55-300mm to my collection and am glad I did! This lens produces superior images throughout its focal range, even wide open at 300mm, hand held. It is definitely a better match for the resolving power of the K20D sensor than the 50-200mm, and although the lens is a little bulky, especially when zoomed out fully, it’s surprisingly lighter than it looks. This lens, together with the 18-55 AL II, covers an impressive focal range, and takes great pictures, at an affordable price.” – by K. Lee

Great Tele-Zoom for the Money | Rating: ★★★★☆
“I’m happy with my purchase, giving it four stars only because there are better lenses available (at a much higher price). For the money I think this is a great value-it seems sharp throughout the range to me, and I only gave up 5 mm on the bottom end when comparing to the 50-200. I think the results are marginally better than what I was getting with the 50-200, especially at the longer end, and it produces great photos in the right light conditions-read, lots of light. I’m not a photography pro, but I do tend to scrtuinize my images fairly carefully, and I don’t see things like purple fringing in this lens. “ – by J. Ramnes

a great performer | Rating: ★★★★☆
“This lens is surprisingly sharp from 55mm all the way through 300mm and there is not much difference in sharpness between widely open and close down aperture. The weight is just about right and focusing speed is ok for me. But, my lens has very strong chromatic abberation when it is widely open, all through the zoom range. The color (blue) fringe is pretty (excuse me for not being scientifically accurate) wide. In a test shot, the black characters (on a white background) became all blue at the short end of the lens at f4 and f5.6. I did not bother to return my lens for service or exchange, because it is so sharp and I can avoid most of the chromatic abberation by not shooting high contrast subjects.” – by Y. GAO

I love this Lens | Rating: ★★★★★
“This is a really good lens. Upgraded from the smaller 55-200mm it has a good focal range and great clarity. I am really looing foward to taking this lens to an airshow to really try it out. “ – by Matthew J. Baker

An Exellent Budget Option | Rating: ★★★★★
“The DA 55-300 is a great budget option to get to 300mm. It is quite sharp throughout its range, is compact, light and benefits from the in body shake reduction that is present in Pentax dSLRs. Just a quick comment about the shake reduction. I am able to shoot comfortably at 300mm and 1/8 second and have very sharp images. “ – by V. Waldron

More user opinions | Write your opinion

Samples

Pentax DA 55-300mm f/4-5.8 ED Sample Photos

- Pentax DA 55-300mm f/4-5.8 ED Sample Photos @ Photozone.de
- Pentax DA 55-300mm f/4-5.8 ED Sample Photos @ Pbase.com
- Pentax DA 55-300mm f/4-5.8 ED Sample Photos @ Flickr.com
- Pentax DA 55-300mm f/4-5.8 ED Sample Photos @ Amazon.com

Features & Specifications

Pentax DA 55-300mm f/4-5.8 ED Specifications

The versatile Pentax DA 55-300mm zoom lens offers a focal length equivalent of 82.5 to 450mm in the 35mm format, making it ideal for moderate to long sports and wildlife shots. The lens is outfitted with multiple ED glass elements, which are designed to minimize chromatic aberration and makes images look crisper and sharper than ever before. The Pentax Super Protective coating, meanwhile, protects the exposed lens elements against dirt and contamination. Other features include a focusing ring that permits easy manual focusing, a 4.6-foot close focusing distance, and a 58mm filter diameter. Specially adapted for high-quality Pentax and Samsung digital SLR cameras, the lens carries a one-year warranty.

Specifications

* Focal length: 55-300mm
* Maximum aperture: f/4 to 5.8
* Minimum aperture: f/22 to 32
* Lens construction: 12 elements in 8 groups
* Angle of view: 29 to 5.4 degrees (when used with Pentax digital SLR camera body)
* Number of diaphragm blades: 6
* Minimum focusing distance: 4.6 feet
* Maximum magnification: 0.28x
* Filter diameter: 58mm
* Diaphragm control: Fully automatic
* Hood: PH-RBG 58mm
* Objective cap: O-LC58
* Case: S80-160
* Corresponding AF mounts: Pentax and Samsung
* Dimensions: 2.8 inches in diameter and 4.4 inches long
* Weight: 15.5 ounces
* Warranty: 1 year


See also: Lens Reviews | Pentax Lenses





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