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01-08-2011, 04:05 PM   #1
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Pentax smc 55mm f1.8 kmount lens

I know that you have to use this lens manually focused on K100D body,
but does it work every other way on the K100D. If anyone has any
comments about the lens I would love to hear them. I'm looking for a used
one because I read many good reviews about the 55. It seems there is also
a Takumar smc model of this lens. Is it just as good as the Pentax . Is it cheaper than the Pentax and does it need an adapter on the K100D. If so, is
an adapter easy to screw onto K100D. Freddy

01-08-2011, 04:11 PM   #2
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Takumar = Pentax, and they are the exact same lens.

I prefer the K mount version but they can be harder to find.

You need to use the lens in M mode. Then, use the green button to meter (camera will suggest a shutter speed). Finally, focus and shoot. It's not so bad once you get used to it.

Great little lens. Don't pay more than 50 dollars for it.
01-08-2011, 04:21 PM   #3
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Thanks for the tips, Paper bag. Question: When i press the green button and camera suggests shutter speed do I have to actually set the shutter speed? Freddy
01-08-2011, 04:29 PM   #4
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Pressing the green button sets the recommended shutter speed.

01-08-2011, 04:46 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by fevbusch Quote
When i press the green button and camera suggests shutter speed do I have to actually set the shutter speed? Freddy
Nope, it's automatic. It's like a slow AV mode.

For convienicne, have a look at the A 50mm f1.7. It's not quite as good as far as bokeh is concerned, but I use it often so I can use AV and TV mode (for say a concert).
01-08-2011, 04:52 PM   #6
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I have the M 50mm f1.7 which I find almost impossible to focus because it has such a shallow DOF. It does take great pictures at infinity. Very sharp and good contrast.
Also, every time I use it I have to make three adjustments in camera setup. Too much trouble. Thanks, Freddy P.S. What do you mean by 'SLOW av MODE".
01-08-2011, 05:00 PM   #7
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Probably that in AV mode the shutterspeed is generated automatically and with a M lens you have the extra (thus slower) step of hitting the green button to get a shutterspeed from the camera.
01-08-2011, 05:07 PM   #8
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No, I meant what does it mean "like a slow AV mode" pertaining to the 55mm lens. Freddy

01-08-2011, 05:37 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by fevbusch Quote
I have the M 50mm f1.7 which I find almost impossible to focus because it has such a shallow DOF. It does take great pictures at infinity. Very sharp and good contrast.
Also, every time I use it I have to make three adjustments in camera setup. Too much trouble. Thanks, Freddy P.S. What do you mean by 'SLOW av MODE".
See your manual, page 152, and set your camera for optical preview. Then you can stop your lens down some, focus and then set exposure as desired. This is also a way of doing Manual Green Button shooting.

01-08-2011, 05:51 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by fevbusch Quote
I have the M 50mm f1.7 which I find almost impossible to focus because it has such a shallow DOF. It does take great pictures at infinity. Very sharp and good contrast.
Also, every time I use it I have to make three adjustments in camera setup. Too much trouble. Thanks, Freddy P.S. What do you mean by 'SLOW av MODE".
FYI - Your lens will work at f1.7 in Av mode but only at f1.7 in any other aperture setting you will need to use Manual mode.

I have found that the most critical as well as most rewarding aspect when using a non AF lens is the focusing. It will take practice and knowing your cameras tendency's and how the image looks in your viewfinder when manually focusing. The 50 1.7 is pretty hard to focus wide open and my best suggestion is to use only Spot Focusing all the time. Personally, I usually practice on something like a newspaper on a table, focus on something close and check results, keep moving further away, etc. If you want to enjoy using a Manual Lens proper focusing is a must. Just practice and use spot focusing... PS. Make sure you have your viewfinder diopter adjusted just right, you're depending on your eyes now.

I've been using the K 55 f1.8 and a Tak 55 f2 this week and the K is a bit easier to focus plus extremely sharp and the images produced by the Takumar are simply splendid... I think you can probably find the Takumar 55mm more abundant and cheaper than the K-mount. You'll need an m42 to k-mount adapter to use the lens.
01-08-2011, 05:57 PM   #11
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Thanks, Unartist.
I was thinking of the Takumar but the m42 screwmount procedure sounded so awkward and time consuming that I don't know if I want to do all that.
Am I right about the m42 being complicated. Freddy
01-08-2011, 06:23 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by fevbusch Quote
Thanks, Unartist.
I was thinking of the Takumar but the m42 screwmount procedure sounded so awkward and time consuming that I don't know if I want to do all that.
Am I right about the m42 being complicated. Freddy
At first it is, but the Takumars are capable of producing such magical images that what little hassle it is to change lenses is pretty minor (and you may find you will rarely take the lens off). And if you have a wide, normal and short tele takumar/m42 lens, it's not complicated at all, just screw one off and screw one on. The metering will be done entirely in Manual mode, they all have a very long focusing throw, so it will take practice.

It becomes complicated when you don't have a set of takumars and you need to remove lens and then adapter to mount a K lens... PS. make sure you buy a good adapter, Pentax sells one

But it's all fun - Rick
01-08-2011, 06:36 PM   #13
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Rick, that doesn't sound hard at all. I don't mind screwing off an AF lens and
then screwing on the m42 mount you recommended and then screwing the
Takumar onto that. That's easy. Of course the mount costs $30., so
I would have to get a good price on the lens. I'll look into it. Thanks so much for your help Rick and you other guys. Freddy
P.S. Why I was afraid was I read something about a "bellows" screw mount that sounded weird to me. What's that all about.
01-08-2011, 11:29 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by fevbusch Quote
Why I was afraid was I read something about a "bellows" screw mount
Don't buy this, you don't need it.

The nice thing about the screwmount adaptor is that it opens you up to all sorts of lenses, and you only need one adapter. The SMC line (pre M, sometimes called the K series) are mostly repackaged takumar lenses in the K-mount, which can be harder to find, but often less expensive (remember, Canon users can adapt old takumar screw-mount lenses to their DSLRs, driving their price up).
01-09-2011, 04:58 AM   #15
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Paper bag, do you mean the "bellows" is a different kind of screw mount
and that's why I should only buy the pentax screwmount? Freddy
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