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Pentax MG

Reviews Views Date of last review
5 51,289 Sun November 17, 2019
Recommended By Average Price Average User Rating
80% of reviewers $15.62 7.50
Pentax MG

Pentax MG
Pentax MG
Pentax MG

The Pentax MG is another simplified, low cost variant of the Pentax ME. As opposed to the MV the MG retains shutter speed readout in the viewfinder.

Year introduced
Meter range
2 - 19 EV
Meter pattern
ISO range
25 - 1600
DX ISO range
No DX coding
Exposure modes
Av, X, B
Exposure compensation
+/-2 EV
Exposure memory lock
Shutter speeds (auto)
1 - 1/1000s
Shutter speeds (manual)
Shutter speeds (mechanical)
1/100s, B
Self timer
Mirror lock-up
Auto bracketing
Multiple exposures
External winder 2 fps
Built-in flash
TTL flash
P-TTL flash
Sync speed
Flash exposure comp
Autofocus sensitivity
Not applicable
Power zoom
0.87x, 92%
Viewfinder type
Diopter correction
Exchangeable screen
Depth of field preview
Image size
24 x 36 mm
Panorama format
2 x S76
Battery grip/pack
Size (W x H x D)
132 x 85 x 49.5 mm
420 g
Price History:

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Sort Reviews by: Date | Author | Rating | Recommendation | Likes (Descending) Showing Reviews 1-5 of 5

Registered: May, 2013
Location: Rockville, MD
Posts: 390
Review Date: November 17, 2019 I can recommend the Pentax MG: Yes | Price: $10.99 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Lightweight, Easy to use, Dedicated Flash Capability
Cons: None when used within its limitations

Excellent walkabout camera with no frills. When operated within the limitations it was designed for, it works marvelously. It has the "feel" of a less-robust build quality than it's ME predecessor, but in actual use, it seems equally capable longevity-wise. I think of the MG as an enhanced version of the MV-1, doing all the MV-1 does with shutter speed info in the viewfinder.

One plus not previously mentioned is the MG's capability to be used with Pentax dedicated flash units (specifically the AF-200S[or T], AF-160, AF-280T, and the AF-080C Ring Light). You are provided with a flash ready light (and X indicator) in the viewfinder with the shutter in AUTO mode. You get automatic synchronization for flash on charging.

Overall a fun camera to use!

Registered: October, 2012
Location: Colorado
Posts: 1,425
Review Date: August 4, 2014 I can recommend the Pentax MG: No | Price: $10.88 | Rating: 5 

Pros: Small, accurate meter
Cons: Fully automatic, no flash PC ports, limited ISO range, worst type of focusing screen

The MG is a scaled-down version of the ME Super, if I recall correctly. It's light and small and it's not unpleasureable to use. I, however, don't like automatic-only cameras and I admit to having a bias against the smaller M-series cameras to begin with.

The MG is like every other M-series camera except the MX. The MG is light, but it doesn't handle well. The lightness, to me, actually makes it harder to use because it seems more prone to mirror shake. Also, many of the lenses I use feel unbalanced on these lighter bodies. That includes the SMC-A 50mm f2.

The MG would be good for a first-time user who wants to take snapshots and have access to an array of lenses, but beyond that it's hard to use for regular, everyday work if you enjoy the freedom of greater control from cameras like the K series and Spotmatics. So, no, I can't honestly say that I'd recommend this to most users.

New Member

Registered: November, 2013
Posts: 6
Review Date: March 18, 2014 I can recommend the Pentax MG: Yes | Price: $25.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: good manual SLR, very clear viewfinder
Cons: none, perhaps lack of aperture indication in viewfinder

a pure Pentax for those who love simple photography. beautifull colored time indication in viewfinder

if batteries of digital are empty, give it a chance

1/100 sec and B without batteries possible

winder as option

I use it when wide angle of real 20mm is needed (full size)
Veteran Member

Registered: July, 2010
Location: Yorkshire
Posts: 1,501
Review Date: January 24, 2013 I can recommend the Pentax MG: Yes | Price: None indicated | Rating: 7 

Pros: Very small... Very easy...
Cons: Lacks full control - Av-Only camera

Got mine with an M50-1.7 for 20 quid... Now paired up with an M40-2.8... Very small indeed!!

Great little camera for street shooting... People don't even notice it's there...

Drawback is that it's aperture-priority only... NO SHUTTERSPEED CONTROL...

Much quicker to use than the MX but not quite as much fun...

Also a tad on the plastiky side yet stil of a fairly solid build...

I tend to load it up with 400speed film, stick the lens at f8 and just go for it!

For the price these go at they are truly a bargain; if only for the lens that's often attached... But like all Pentax SLRs of this era, it's a good looking camera...

Here it is with the now sold Orange-ME-Super sporting its Purple leather

Loyal Site Supporter

Registered: January, 2008
Location: Paris, TN
Posts: 2,985

2 users found this helpful
Review Date: June 3, 2009 I can recommend the Pentax MG: Yes | Price: None indicated | Rating: N/A 


Quiz: What was the lightest "real" M-body package?

Ans: The MG with an SMC-A 50/2.0 at < ~535 grams/~1lb 3oz -- and the M /1.7 only added another 20 grams/< 1 oz.

For me, this was the perfect daylight walk-about package. If I'd had the money to get a pancake-40 it would have quite literally been a pocket camera. Pentax build quality and compact handling and all the functionality I needed short of doing special projects or low-light situations (I never cared much for flash but the shoe was there if needed).

With an M-mode lens it was as simple as it gets -- with hyper-focal distance set and the most likely Sunny-Sixteen aperture pre-selected for DOF control few situations needed more than a tweak of the focus or aperture rings. Exposure compensation? Use the ASA dial. And it used the ME Winder too.

The ME and ME-Super added a bit of functionality but at the price of additional complexity -- I seemed to always have to THINK about what to set with them while I always KNEW what was about to happen with the MG.

I got carried away once and put an SMC-A 1:4 /35~70 on one of the MG's. Should have been a sweet combination, and it worked with an ME-S, but all it did was mess up my simple habit patterns with the MG.

I did sort of miss the larger view finder of the ME's (.85 vs. .92 x-factor) but the lighter weight had to come from some compromise and younger eyes and snappy focusing primes got the job done anyway.

I eventually wore out one black body, sold another one and still have a nearly pristine MG sporting an M 50/1.7 sitting where it's handy should I ever have the urge to burn a roll of film again. I occassionally run "fire drills" with it just to confirm the old habits are still alive.

This was the camera that went out the door with me unless there was a good reason for something more complex. While not the most USEFUL camera, I voted this one "Miss Congeniality".


Added pictures of a black MG with Winder ME 2 grip and a size comparison with K1000.
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