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06-29-2008, 01:09 PM   #1
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Rexatar 135mm f/2.8

Okay, here's a lens you've probably never heard of - the Rexatar 135/2.8. To be honest, if I didn't have two Rexatar lenses that came with my Spotmatic, I probably would never had heard of Rexatar either. Last week I got a Pentax screw mount adaptor for my K100D, so I tried it out with my old Rexatar 135 taking a few shots in the backyard.

Let me know what you think.

This shot was taken at 1/4000, f/2.8, iso 400

06-29-2008, 02:04 PM   #2
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I also know what a Rexatar is! My copy came with the Ricoh Singlex TLS that I bought mail order (from Ritz I think) back in 1970. Rexatar was the brand-x lens that they shipped me instead of the Rikenon 50/1.7 that I was expecting. Yep, the classic bait and switch that was the norm for mail order back then. They sent me the black body that I did not order and the cheapo lens followed by a letter a few days later offering the correct lens as a $20 upgrade. The letter also indicated that the black body was not intended as a freebie and that I owed them an additional $20 for that too.

By that time I had already put a couple of rolls of Plus-X through the camera and was pleased enough with the Rexatar's performance to keep it rather than play any more games with Ritz. I liked the black body too and figured that if they wanted the $20 they could make the trip from New Jersey to Seattle to get it!

My experience was that it was decent lens. I think it was probably made by Cosina. Strangely, it bore an uncanny resemblance to the Zeiss Jena Pancolar 50/1.8 made during the same era. I had the Ricoh with the Rexatar until the mid-80s when I gave the camera to my brother on an extended loan. What happened to it after that, I don't know.

If I get a chance, I will scan a few of my old slides and post them here. (Assuming the moderator doesn't mind a non-Pentax image!)


BTW...A few years ago I finally got the silver finish Ricoh with the Rikenon 50/1.7 like I originally ordered. $25 total price in like new condition on eBay.

Last edited by stevebrot; 06-29-2008 at 04:53 PM.
06-29-2008, 07:06 PM   #3
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It was nice to ready the story about your Rexatar lens. I have to admit, I'm surprised that someone else has had a Rexatar lens. They seem to be quite rare. I'd like to see some of your pics taken with the Rexatar. Here's another one taken with the 135mm f/2.8 this evening of my cat. As you said, it looks like a decent lens.

06-29-2008, 07:51 PM   #4
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I had one as well, but it was a Minolta mount in a collection of old Pentax lens I bought. The aperture blades were sticky and since I didn't have a Minolta camera I got rid of it. It was a nice looking lens.

06-29-2008, 08:45 PM   #5
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I have never heard of that brand either until now Frank ! Good shot but your skill is taken into consideration , too .
07-05-2008, 09:14 PM   #6
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Well I dug through my old slides back to 1981 for the image below. My scanner sucks and the slide was dusty, but I think you can see that I was able to get fairly good results with my old Rexatar when I had it.

Mt. Angeles, Washington. Winter 1981. Rexatar 50/1.7, Kodachrome 64.

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12-23-2009, 01:16 AM   #7

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Just found this note and wanted to add my own:

I've got a Rexatar 135mm f/2.8 that I bought sometime before 1974, probably close to 1970. I just - literally - rediscovered it in the garage after many many moves since then and about 3 moves since the camera bag has even been opened.

I'm impressed by the photos you've posted. After I get it attached to my K200D and figure out how to use it that way, maybe I can post a shot or two.

Mine was purchased from the Prinz photo company, probably mail order, although I may have purchased it on a buying trip. At the time, I was in high school in a small (under 1k people) town very far from any major shopping. On occasion, the family would load up and drive two hours to the nearest semblance of a mall.

I honestly cannot remember a lot of the details back then, and that's a shame, because I know I was having a great time with photography and my Praktica L (manual everything, no meter).

35 years ago, maybe closer to 40? wow... where's it all gone.... Time flies....

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