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10-05-2010, 01:15 PM   #1
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Sears 70-210mm f4 Macro zoom KA mount

Would you buy this? I have a K-x. Thx


Last edited by royden; 10-05-2010 at 02:52 PM. Reason: typo
10-05-2010, 01:25 PM   #2
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I have one. And the answer is no. Save up a bit longer and get the DA 50 to 200 it is vastly superior and 100% compatible with your K-X (I assume K-z is a typo
10-05-2010, 01:26 PM   #3
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If it's inexpensive and in decent shape then sure, give it a try .
10-05-2010, 02:51 PM   #4
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Would a Takumar-A 70-200 f 4 Macro Zoom K mount be a better choice? I would think so and yes I have a K-x. The Sears is $39. The Tak is $56
I want to play around with macro photography on the cheap. Would this be a better way as oppose to a reverse adapter? I have a M50 f1.7.
Thank you

10-05-2010, 05:23 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by tkossally Quote
I want to play around with macro photography on the cheap.
Ignore the word "macro" when it comes to zoom lenses. It was an invention by the marketing department.

I'm currently looking at a Vivitar 70-210mm 1:4.5-5.6 Macro Focusing Zoom. "Macro" for this lens means 1:4 magnification ratio.

If you like the zoom lens, buy it. But don't buy it because you "want to play around with macro photography."

Last edited by SOldBear; 10-05-2010 at 06:56 PM.
10-05-2010, 06:55 PM   #6
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If you're looking at something like a 70/210 zoom with macro, you could NOT go past the Pentax "A" 70/210 zoom. NOT the takumar version, which is inferior.
The Pentax "A" is cheap, readily available, & I've never heard of anyone who's had a problem with it.
Cheers, Pickles.
10-05-2010, 07:56 PM   #7
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Thanks SOldBear for the heads up. Will keep looking. Read an article at photo.net which supports what you said. If I didn't have a zoom(55-300 DA L) I'd take such a macro zoom for the f4 all the way.
10-05-2010, 09:38 PM   #8
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I have the Sears zoom, in 3 different versions (PK, M42, and N-AI), and I like them. Each cost me all of US$9 (shipping included) so I can afford the affection. They are decent, but I wouldn't pay more than US$15 for any. As mentioned, "macro zoom" is almost always an oxymoron. I own an odd exception, a Schneider Betavaron 50-125mm enlarger zoom that does quite well on tubes or helicoid for non-macro photography, or on bellows for macro work. It cost US$70, marked down from $3500. Out of the ~100 lenses I can mount on my K20D, I rank it in my top ten.

But if you want to "play around with macro" cheap, here's how: M42 bellows, M42 tubes, and enlarger lenses. My bellows cost US$35, the tubes were US$8, and a Wollensak 162/4.5 lens was US$7. Throw in a (safe) flanged non-infinity-focus M42-PK adapter for another US$5, and almost any enlarger lens for US$5-10, and you've got a powerful cheap system. Enlarger lenses are all extremely sharp. NOTE: enlarger lenses of 80mm or longer will focus to infinity on a bellows, so can be used for non-macro as well as macro shooting.

10-06-2010, 01:24 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by RioRico Quote
I have the Sears zoom, in 3 different versions (PK, M42, and N-AI), and I like them. Each cost me all of US$9 (shipping included) so I can afford the affection. They are decent, but I wouldn't pay more than US$15 for any. As mentioned, "macro zoom" is almost always an oxymoron. I own an odd exception, a Schneider Betavaron 50-125mm enlarger zoom that does quite well on tubes or helicoid for non-macro photography, or on bellows for macro work. It cost US$70, marked down from $3500. Out of the ~100 lenses I can mount on my K20D, I rank it in my top ten.

But if you want to "play around with macro" cheap, here's how: M42 bellows, M42 tubes, and enlarger lenses. My bellows cost US$35, the tubes were US$8, and a Wollensak 162/4.5 lens was US$7. Throw in a (safe) flanged non-infinity-focus M42-PK adapter for another US$5, and almost any enlarger lens for US$5-10, and you've got a powerful cheap system. Enlarger lenses are all extremely sharp. NOTE: enlarger lenses of 80mm or longer will focus to infinity on a bellows, so can be used for non-macro as well as macro shooting.
Hi RioRico, Thanks for the much appreciated info..100 lenses, You need not worry about me catching up. I have 4. Will look for a M42 enlarger etc on EB. Any other source you use? What about a reverse adapter. I have 2 M50..f2 and f 1.7.
10-08-2010, 07:49 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by tkossally Quote
Hi RioRico, Thanks for the much appreciated info..100 lenses, You need not worry about me catching up. I have 4.
Four. That's a good start. Oh yeah, 100 sounds like a lot, but if I don't count the three most expensive zooms, they average about US$25 each. That's average. Some of my best were under US$10: Vivitar-Komine 90/2.8 macro ($3), Takumar 55/1.8 ($7), Nikkor 85/2 ($9), various enlarger lenses for $7 each, etc.

QuoteQuote:
Will look for a M42 enlarger etc on EB. Any other source you use? What about a reverse adapter. I have 2 M50..f2 and f 1.7.
Many enlarger lenses are M39. An M39-M42 adapter usually costs ~US$3, and for using anything on PK or M42 extension (bellows and/or tubes), a cheap and safe flanged M42-PK adapter for US$5 works great. I get all mine off the bay. Sets of simple tubes are now usually around US$8; I just bought two more each of PK and M42. PK or M42 bellows can often be found for under US$40.

Using enlarger lenses on bellows: The bellows have a certain thickness. Lenses longer than 75mm can usually focus to infinity and can thus be used for general non-macro photography too. Shorter lenses (<75mm) allow/force you to work close. Longer lenses (>125mm) may require tubes as well as bellows. No lens can focus closer than its focal length. Keep all that in mind when buying stuff.

There are two kinds of reverse adapters: mount, and thread. Both are very cheap, usually around US$5. With either, you'll find that your working distance is VERY CLOSE, like under two inches. If you're shooting in a studio with a light tent, great. But they're more work than using non-reversed lenses on extensions.

Note: MAGNIFICATION COMES FROM EXTENSION, NOT FROM REVERSAL. Reversing a lens gives a sharper image; but extension is what magnifies.

A mount-reversal adapter has a thread on one side and a PK mount on the other. ANY lens from ANY maker, with that size thread, can be reversed and used for macro work. I've used reversed Canon, Konica, Minolta and Leitz lenses this way. Your M50's will work fine; they have aperture rings. Use a mount-reversal ring if you have PK bellows and/or tubes. Get used to working at two inches.

A thread-reversal ring has male threads on both sides, used for stacking lenses. Let's say I have a 100mm prime and a 50mm prime (both with 49mm threads), and a 49mm thread reversal ring. I put the 100mm on the camera -- it's the PRIMARY. I screw the ring into its threads. I screw the 50mm lens into that reversa ring -- it's the SECONDARY. Magnification is P/S or 100/50 or 2:1. If the primary is 105mm and the secondary is 35mm, M= 105/35 = 3:1. Stacking lets you get GREAT magnification. But your working distance is still under two inches.

Those are some of the basics. Have fun!

Last edited by RioRico; 10-08-2010 at 07:56 AM.
10-09-2010, 07:15 PM   #11
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Hey RioRico: Thanks for additional info.So far I have ordered a K mount tube to try with the M 50s also a 52MM reverse. Should have ordered a 49 instead but I will get that too(US4.00ea) Tube was US$7.00. I haven't seen any enlarger lens of the name you mentioned. The few I saw were much more than$10.00 and no mention of the mount type. Will keep looking when I get back to Atlanta in 2 weeks. What is 'safe flanged M42?. How do you use the Nikkor on a Pentax camera?. You mentioned "N-AI". Is that a Nikon/Pentax adapter? Sorry about all the questions...just trying to learn as much as I can. Peace.
10-09-2010, 07:53 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by tkossally Quote
Hey RioRico: Thanks for additional info.So far I have ordered a K mount tube to try with the M 50s also a 52MM reverse. Should have ordered a 49 instead but I will get that too(US4.00ea) Tube was US$7.00. I haven't seen any enlarger lens of the name you mentioned. The few I saw were much more than$10.00 and no mention of the mount type. Will keep looking when I get back to Atlanta in 2 weeks. What is 'safe flanged M42?. How do you use the Nikkor on a Pentax camera?. You mentioned "N-AI". Is that a Nikon/Pentax adapter? Sorry about all the questions...just trying to learn as much as I can. Peace.
In order: Various enlarger lenses always pop up on eBay. A few days ago I got a Simmon Omega 2" f/4.5 for US$3.50 (good thing I have a 30mm adapter for its weird thread) and I just missed an EL-Nikkor 80/4.5 for US$7.50. Search eBay cameras for EL and ENLARGER and ENLARGING. Some names fetch top dollar; many don't; and just about all enlarger lenses are very sharp.

The "safe flanged" type of adapter looks rather like a PK mount-reversal ring, except with the M42 thread on the inside. The rim (flange) around the PK mount bayonets is about 6mm or 1/4 inch wide. It's safe because it's impossible to jam in a camera mount. It's sometimes called a NO-INFINITY FOCUS adapter because the flange is about 1mm thick, pushing the lens a little too far from the sensor, so the lens won't focus to infinity. For macros or closeups, who cares? Some long cheap telephotos focus PAST infinity, so using such an adapter just normalizes them. For other teles, the drop from infinity isn't really significant. I use such an adapter on my Tele-Takumar 200/5.6, a cheap gem; far focus drops to about 100m, and most of what I shoot with it is closer than that anyway.

There are a couple ways to use a Nikkor on a Pentax. Keep in mind that the Nikon registration is about 1mm longer than Pentax, so a Nikkor will focus slightly past infinity when on a Pentax camera, and won't focus quite so close. For lots of info, just google for NIKON LENS MOUNT. Oh yeah, I've tried to fit newer AF Nikkors but they just don't hold without surgery, and I'd rather sell such than castrate them. Anyhow, here are the two ways:

* Simple: force-fit it. The mounts are very similar. A force-fit Nikkor doesn't lock firmly into the Pentax mount, so use it carefully. Older non-AI-mount lenses have a skirt all the way around the aperture ring, which is what keeps them from fitting securely. That skirt*could* be ground off, but I haven't had a reason to bother doing so yet.

* Not quite so simple: lens surgery. N-AI (Nikon AI or AIS mount) lenses don't have that full skirt around the aperture ring, just what I call an arc-and-nub. Those are easily cut off with a Dremel cutting wheel. The modded lens still doesn't lock-onto the Pentax mount but it holds rather well. I ain't lost one yet! Also its metal base (safely) shorts the PK electrical contacts so I can use Catch-In-Focus. I took a few hours to carefully cut my first Nikkor. The four I've modded since then took about 12 minutes each, working on the wooden railing on my back porch (a state-of-the-art workshop, eh?) I am NOT a fine craftsman, but the mod is easy.

I hope that helps. Keep asking questions! And google up some research. Cheers!
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