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03-24-2020, 12:06 PM - 1 Like   #1
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Adapting Exakta mount lenses

I have a large collection of Exakta cameras and a few more lenses than I need so I wanted to try some on my digital bodies. I bought a Fotodiox Pro Exa-PK adapter. This is one with a lens in it to allow for infinity focus. Problem 1...A number of lenses, usually wide angle, extend back past the edge of the lens mount hitting the adapters lens, making infinity unreachable. Problem 2...in spite I'd having a coated (appears to be) lens in it, it exhibits terrible flare. I have an example attached.

1) K70 with adapter and Steinheil 55/1.9
2) Fotodiox adapter
3) 3502 image taken using Steinheil without adapter (holding it in place with my hand)
4) 3501 image with Steinheil and adapter
5) 3496 Image taken with HD Pentax 35/2.8 macro

The image I took holding the Steinheil up to the camera with my hand is better than with the adapter. The adapter is really only usable with some lenses in low contrast shots...for the most part it's crap and I wouldn't recommend anyone using it.

Shots are ISO 1600, apertures f/5.6 or 8...

Attached Images
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ONEPLUS A6013  Photo 
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PENTAX K-70  Photo 
View Picture EXIF
PENTAX K-70  Photo 
View Picture EXIF
PENTAX K-70  Photo 
View Picture EXIF
PENTAX K-70  Photo 
03-24-2020, 01:17 PM - 1 Like   #2
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I've been around this bush a few too many times. One would think there would be a straightforward and tidy way to modify or adapt Exakta to M42 or Pentax-K, but nooooo!


Steve
03-24-2020, 01:31 PM   #3
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Interesting. I inherited a Exakta from my father. I've never used it, I can't remember him ever using it. I think I dated to the later 1950's. I've got like 2 lenses for it, a 44mm or something like that as the 'normal' lens and a 200mm lens. Never thought of trying to mount it on my K-mount cameras. So your motivation to try to adapt those to your camera is because you have a large number of those lenses, right? Are you doing this just for fun and exploration or something else. Just wondering here.
03-24-2020, 03:23 PM - 1 Like   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
I've been around this bush a few too many times. One would think there would be a straightforward and tidy way to modify or adapt Exakta to M42 or Pentax-K, but nooooo!


Steve
There was of course RioRico's adapter...

ANNOUNCING: Easy cheap non-destructive Exakta-Pentax adapter

03-24-2020, 03:49 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by boriscleto Quote
There was of course RioRico's adapter...

ANNOUNCING: Easy cheap non-destructive Exakta-Pentax adapter
I considered his approach, but given that I have two quite functional Exakta bodies (VX IIa and VX 1000), easy reversibility would also be nice. His approach also works best on pre-set lenses. Doing the same with those having the auto-aperture arm is a bit involved.


Steve
03-24-2020, 03:57 PM - 1 Like   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by blackcloudbrew Quote
Are you doing this just for fun and exploration or something else. Just wondering here.
I can't speak for Tony, but I am interested in adapting to digital because many of the lenses made in Exakta mount were highest quality and reputation of the day. An Auto-Quinon as shown in the original post is easily worth $250 USD or more due to a strong reputation (Example photos). I don't have anything that fancy, but I do have a CZJ Flektogon 35/2.8 that is a bit of a cult classic and might be fun to use on a less clumsy body than a Varex or Exa.


Steve
03-24-2020, 04:31 PM - 2 Likes   #7
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I wanted this functionality (Exakta lens on Pentax) simply because I find my Pentax DSLR's so much easier to use than my basic Samsung mirrorless at close distances. However, I was prepared to manage with just a close-focus capability, simply because, to my mind, that is where the differences of these older lenses stand out. So I removed the lens mount from the front of a non-functional Exa body (just four screws) and super-glued it to one of the flanged M42-PK adaptors. My 50mm Trioplan focusses at about 14-20" when mounted like this and can be used with PK extension tubes if I want to get a lot closer. For longer distances where focussing isn't quite so critical I revert to the mirrorless body.
For this particular application, where the Exakta lens will never focus to infinity (or anywhere near) without some modification, I'm happy with the compromise.
03-24-2020, 04:52 PM - 1 Like   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
I've been around this bush a few too many times. One would think there would be a straightforward and tidy way to modify or adapt Exakta to M42 or Pentax-K, but nooooo!





Steve
Yeah I've been reading all the old posts going back to 2008...it's just not possible. The only one I saw that was possible involved modifying the Exakta mount and I don't want to butcher my lenses. Sorry if I'm rehashing old threads.




---------- Post added 03-24-20 at 04:58 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
I can't speak for Tony, but I am interested in adapting to digital because many of the lenses made in Exakta mount were highest quality and reputation of the day. An Auto-Quinon as shown in the original post is easily worth $250 USD or more due to a strong reputation (Example photos). I don't have anything that fancy, but I do have a CZJ Flektogon 35/2.8 that is a bit of a cult classic and might be fun to use on a less clumsy body than a Varex or Exa.


Steve
I have 3 of the 55 Steinheil. When I got them they were the "lesser" lenses they used to throw on a body to sell. Same with the Meyer Gorlitz... Jeez I don't know how many 100mm and 58mm Meyers I've had... I've still got 3 Primoplans and I didn't pay more than $20 for any. I wish someone made a straight adapter that didn't do infinity...with no lens...just get it as close to the body as possible...like the m42 adapter. I could live with 10 feet in.

---------- Post added 03-24-20 at 04:59 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by kypfer Quote
I wanted this functionality (Exakta lens on Pentax) simply because I find my Pentax DSLR's so much easier to use than my basic Samsung mirrorless at close distances. However, I was prepared to manage with just a close-focus capability, simply because, to my mind, that is where the differences of these older lenses stand out. So I removed the lens mount from the front of a non-functional Exa body (just four screws) and super-glued it to one of the flanged M42-PK adaptors. My 50mm Trioplan focusses at about 14-20" when mounted like this and can be used with PK extension tubes if I want to get a lot closer. For longer distances where focussing isn't quite so critical I revert to the mirrorless body.
For this particular application, where the Exakta lens will never focus to infinity (or anywhere near) without some modification, I'm happy with the compromise.
That's what I want to do...great idea...I have dozens of parts bodies...

---------- Post added 03-24-20 at 05:01 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
I can't speak for Tony, but I am interested in adapting to digital because many of the lenses made in Exakta mount were highest quality and reputation of the day. An Auto-Quinon as shown in the original post is easily worth $250 USD or more due to a strong reputation (Example photos). I don't have anything that fancy, but I do have a CZJ Flektogon 35/2.8 that is a bit of a cult classic and might be fun to use on a less clumsy body than a Varex or Exa.


Steve
Steve, aren't the Russian Helios 58mm/f2 just a copy of the Ziess Jena 58mm...I'm assuming so...don't know if the quality is the same though...

---------- Post added 03-24-20 at 05:17 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by blackcloudbrew Quote
Interesting. I inherited a Exakta from my father. I've never used it, I can't remember him ever using it. I think I dated to the later 1950's. I've got like 2 lenses for it, a 44mm or something like that as the 'normal' lens and a 200mm lens. Never thought of trying to mount it on my K-mount cameras. So your motivation to try to adapt those to your camera is because you have a large number of those lenses, right? Are you doing this just for fun and exploration or something else. Just wondering here.
My first camera (not counting the Polaroid Swinger I got when I was 8) was my uncle's Exakta V with a Meyer Gorlitz Primoplan 58mm f/1.9 and a WL Finder. I still have it and it still shoot film. Since then I've been collecting Exakta and later Pentax. I have probably 80 to 90 bodies and close to 100 lenses. I still shoot film with them...I have 3 right now loaded... I'd love to be able to tap into those lenses for digital. I don't know if they're better...probably not...but it would be fun to find out. My widest is a 20mm/4 Zeiss and longest is the 400mm/5.5 Meyer. I've got a 180/3.5 Meyer that I've taken some nice pics with...love to put that on my K-70.

03-24-2020, 06:02 PM - 2 Likes   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by tonyzoc Quote
That's what I want to do...great idea...I have dozens of parts bodies...
I have a couple of junk Varex that might be a suitable mount donor!

QuoteOriginally posted by tonyzoc Quote
Steve, aren't the Russian Helios 58mm/f2 just a copy of the Ziess Jena 58mm...I'm assuming so...don't know if the quality is the same though...
Yes, the Helios 44 58/2.0 series all trace their design to the pre-WWII Zeiss Biotar 58mm. The two are equivalent in terms of general characteristics* with the later Soviet versions having much better coatings and reputably better contrast and resolution.


Steve

* Basically, v. good to excellent center resolution at all apertures with fairly soft edges and corners.
6 Days Ago   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
I have a couple of junk Varex that might be a suitable mount donor!



Yes, the Helios 44 58/2.0 series all trace their design to the pre-WWII Zeiss Biotar 58mm. The two are equivalent in terms of general characteristics* with the later Soviet versions having much better coatings and reputably better contrast and resolution.


Steve

* Basically, v. good to excellent center resolution at all apertures with fairly soft edges and corners.
Ok...I found an Exakta mount in my parts box...put it inside the m42 adapter...it's a little loose so center allign could be off. I'm going to try two or three layers of aluminum foil and push the mount down over it to fill the gaps and center it....cut away the excess. Then drill a elongated hole over where the m42 adapter release is so I can get it off. Then glue it together and paint it flat black. When I finish I'll post a pic... Ideally I'd like the screw the 2 pieces together...because some Exakta lenses are quite heavy...

11 Hours Ago   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by tonyzoc Quote

[/COLOR]My first camera (not counting the Polaroid Swinger I got when I was 8) was my uncle's Exakta V with a Meyer Gorlitz Primoplan 58mm f/1.9 and a WL Finder. I still have it and it still shoot film. Since then I've been collecting Exakta and later Pentax. I have probably 80 to 90 bodies and close to 100 lenses. I still shoot film with them...I have 3 right now loaded... I'd love to be able to tap into those lenses for digital. I don't know if they're better...probably not...but it would be fun to find out. My widest is a 20mm/4 Zeiss and longest is the 400mm/5.5 Meyer. I've got a 180/3.5 Meyer that I've taken some nice pics with...love to put that on my K-70.
Sounds to me like what you really need is a four-year-old Sony mirrorless...

Or a Fuji if APS is OK...

Surely someone makes an Exakta/Sony glassless adapter...

-Eric
10 Hours Ago   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by TwoUptons Quote
Sounds to me like what you really need is a four-year-old Sony mirrorless...



Or a Fuji if APS is OK...



Surely someone makes an Exakta/Sony glassless adapter...



-Eric
I actually figured that out today ...bought a NEX3 today for $70 and a PK and EX adapters.

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