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PENTAX AF 200S Review RSS Feed


Reviews Views Date of last review
6 14,507 Thu December 21, 2017
Recommended By Average Price Average User Rating
100% of reviewers $19.00 8.00

This relatively compact flash has 25% stronger flash output than the AF 160S, with which it otherwise shares most features.

The AF 200S was designed for use with the compact MV, MV1 and ME Super cameras, but it can be used on any camera with a hotshoe.
The flash has two Auto settings where a sensor in the flash meassures the exposure and turns the flash off when the subject has received the right amount of light. You manually set the aperture corresonding to the selected auto setting.

The flash also has a manual setting where it always fires at full power.

When fully charged, the flash sets the camera's shutter speed to the flash synchronization speed, and also enables the camera to show a "flash ready" symbol in the view finder. This additional automation is available with the MV, MV1, ME Super and later cameras. On the ME, MX , and "K" film bodies, the AF 200S works just like any other Auto flash.

Optional accessories (shown in photo above): A wide-angle adaptor which broadens the angle of view which is covered, and a telephoto adaptor, which extends the range.

Flash nameGuide Number (meters ISO 100)Flash controlFlash exposure comp.Flash range
PENTAX AF 200S20Auto (two settings)
Manual (full power)
NoAuto: 0.6 to 7.1m,
Manual: Up to 14.3m
with f/1.4 lens, ISO 100
Flash coverage (24x36)Flash coverage (APS-C)Rotating flash headFlash durationModeling light
28mm lens
24mm with wide angle attachment
19mm lens
16mm with wide-angle attachment
No1/30,000 to 1/1,500sNo
Autofocus spotbeamSensor angleConnectionsHot shoe pinsBatteries
No18 degreesHot shoe3 (incl. ground)4 x AA
Recycle timeDimensions (W x H x D)WeightAccessories includedIn production
6s (Alkaline)67 mm x 105 mm x 60 mm285 g (with batteries)Wide-angle adaptor (AFW1)
Telephoto adaptor (AFT1)

Dedicated camera functionsActual availability depends on the camera, exposure mode and flash settings
Set synch speed when flash is chargedYes
Flash ready signal in view finderYes
Price History:

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Sort Reviews by: Date | Author | Rating | Recommendation | Likes (Descending) Showing Reviews 1-6 of 6

Registered: May, 2013
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 1,186
Review Date: December 21, 2017 I can recommend this item: Yes | Price: None indicated | Rating: 8 

Pros: Price & Performance
Cons: None?

Got given one of these with a few other assorted flashes, and gave it a go with a remote trigger behind an umbrella diffuser.

The 2x auto settings / manual setting switch is corroded to the higher or the two auto settings, but the rest functions perfectly well.

Recycle time is fast enough to match my workflow, but not for Spray n Pray 'togs.

Took a risk and tested it directly on my K-01 body, happily seeing the Flash Ready symbol popping up in the display, and a few test indicated that the flashes output is getting adjusted according to the ISO and Iris settings.

It may also be getting controlled according to the +/- flash output level adjustment, within the constraints of the Auto setting.

I'd rate this a a useful little speedlight where you don't want bulky kit slowing you down - add a small diffuser and it'd be ideal for event photography, such as nightclubs, guests at weddings, and indoor print media use.

Only negatives are lack of a pivot head and no manual levels settings.
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Registered: October, 2008
Location: Bedfordshire, UK
Posts: 104
Review Date: June 11, 2017 I can recommend this item: Yes | Price: $20.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: Powerful enough, backward compatibility, size, price
Cons: No tilt or swivel

I have had this flash for a few years now as a cheap alternative to use with my film cameras. Great little flash that is useful in many cases. With the AFT1 and AFW1 adapter its range and usability is even more extended.

When I bought my K-1 I was intrigued to see how it works. Pentax (as always) impressed me with its backward compatibility. I just needed to set the K-1 to Av mode, set the aperture as indicated on the back of the flash and got well exposed images. In some cases aperture value needed some tweaking + or - but nothing major. More like personal preference. The flash sets the camera to flash sync speed when it recharges. It was usually around 1/40 - 1/125.

Only thing I am missing is a tilting head (or maybe a swivel as well).

These flashes usually go for a bargain price nowadays as people think they belong to an era that is long gone. I think it is time to rediscover this flash and give it a new life in digital age.
Forum Member

Registered: September, 2013
Posts: 62
Review Date: February 24, 2014 I can recommend this item: Yes | Price: $3.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: compact, not expensive.
Cons: not detected

I win this flash at e-bay for 1 pound
and 12 pound shipping

it will be flash for my son, bu I was using a little it previously.
it has fast charging and light-weight and has also 2 AUTO modes, shooting up to 7 meters distance and full manual full discharge as well.
Also this flash is fully dedicated for some film cameras, and to ALL Pentax DSLR.

If somebody does not need bounce or swivel head, and does need small flash - it is good options, or light weight remote flash with additional remote triggers...

Registered: April, 2012
Location: Sydney
Posts: 1,181
Review Date: August 17, 2012 I can recommend this item: Yes | Price: $18.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: cheap, bright goes ziiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiing
Cons: its cheap. deal with it

These are bought for next to nothing. She takes 4xAA is bright enough for what I've needed it for.

Buy yourself a TTL cable (sif you don't already have one) then you can point the dam little thing everywhere

Has a great Ziiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiing noise when powered up. so much so you can guess when its ready to blow by the tone it makes without having to check the "ready" lamp.

Dont be scared of manual flashes.. its not as if you are wasting film anymore... ..

And if you are shooting film, chances are you know what you are doing anyway

I have a larger Metz 45. i hardly use it because of its size and weight. this goes with me instead. love it.

Oh. Trick. Cut a piece of A4 paper down to size and over the glass. you loose a stop but get a much nicer spread of light
Site Supporter

Registered: June, 2008
Location: Florida Hill Country
Posts: 17,245
Review Date: August 13, 2010 I can recommend this item: Yes | Price: $4.00 | Rating: 7 

Pros: Simple to use

Decent Power for a flash its size. The wide angle diffusers are very useful with this flash for wider than 28mm lenses on film and wider than 19mm on aps-c. It has a GN of 20 (ISO 100). It has flash setting of manual and auto thyristor. Dimitrov says it has manual settings of 1/4 & 1/1, but if it does I can't find it. This unit has a catalog number of 30015 not to be confused with the AF200SA that replaced it.

Registered: February, 2008
Location: Waterloo, Ontario
Posts: 4,462
Review Date: May 4, 2010 I can recommend this item: Yes | Price: $50.00 | Rating: 7 

Pros: Compact, cheap on used market
Cons: No tilt or swivel

After my debacle with the underpowered AF160 I purchased the AF 200S for use with my MX and K2 cameras. Cost about $50.00 back in the day. While not a powerhouse with a top guide number of 20 it more than met my needs as a flash for portraits. The wide angle AFW1 and telephoto AFT1 were useful accessories. On the down side there is no tilt for bounce or swivel which presents some limits. A pretty standard basic flash for its era and suitable for use with older cameras not featuring TTL. Be prepared to calculate distance from the scale on your lens and compare it with the chart on the back of the flash. Kind of a pain in the ass but it does work in an old school sort of way. Recommended for those who like to fiddle with a flash but not for those who prefer everything automated.
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