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02-21-2009, 11:54 AM   #1
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Baffled... so many used lenses...

So I'm a noobie with a K20D... I thought I would look for a some cheaper used lenses at a local used camera shop.

The place was packed with at least a hundred old lenses roughly grouped by make....

I found a section I presumed to be the Pentax section and had no idea what lenses I would be able to use. A few were Pentax brand, but most were Minolta, Ricoh, and others... The back of the lens didn't look like the back of my present kit lens.

How can I tell which lens I can use??? How can I possibly know what they're worth or if they are any good????

any advice?

Thanks,

Ken

02-21-2009, 11:57 AM   #2
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Take your camera and try them out in the store is the best route.
02-21-2009, 12:09 PM   #3
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Watch out, though, some Ricoh lenses fit but won't go off again. They have a pin which get's stuck in the recess for the body's autofocus drive shaft.

All Pentax branded lenses will fit, they have the K mount in one of it's various incarnations.

All Takumar branded lenses will fit. A few have the K mount, most have the M42 screw mount and an adapter is required.

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-lens-articles/3800-can-i-use-m42-s...unt-d-slr.html

Forget Minolta lenses, no chance.
02-21-2009, 12:10 PM   #4
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There was a SMC 100-300 FA there for $89... Is this a good deal?

If they're ok for my camera, I guess they'll just fit??? How do I know if they are a 'K' mount? I didn't see a designation for this even on the Pentax branded lens....

02-21-2009, 12:42 PM   #5
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Quick and dirty test. Line up the orange dot on the lens mount, and the orange dot on the body. If the lens connects and then actually turns counter clockwise (lens pointing away from you) and locks onto the body, you've got a compatable K-mount lens (with exception of the above mentioned Ricoh lenses).
02-21-2009, 01:00 PM   #6
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Isn't there more than one design of FA 100-300? Comparing lens prices against ebay, the market place here and the lens database here is a good starting point. Most shops will also let you take test shots with used lenses if you want to check the image quality first hand.

Like Ole said, pretty well any lens made by Pentax should fit one way or another. The mount type isn't labelled on Pentax lenses because with very few exceptions they only made lenses for their own cameras.

Lenses made by 3rd parties could be marked K, PK, PKA, or PKR (which may have the Ricoh pin mentioned by Ole) just about anywhere on the lens, or have no markings at all. If you compare the mount to the one on your kit lens it should be pretty clear whether or not they are compatible.
02-21-2009, 01:00 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Javaslinger Quote
There was a SMC 100-300 FA there for $89... Is this a good deal?

If they're ok for my camera, I guess they'll just fit??? How do I know if they are a 'K' mount? I didn't see a designation for this even on the Pentax branded lens....
Anything (any lens) which has the Name "Pentax" or "Takumar" written on it, will fit. If it has a threaded mount, you would need an adapter from screw-mount (M42) to K-mount and if it already has a bayonett mount, your done.

Anything that has written Canon, Minolta, Konica, Yashica or Nikon on it, will not fit (without a knowledgeable mechanical adaption) - forget all these brands for a start.

Basically there are three kinds of lenses, which you can use:
- original K-mount, with AF (F and FA and DA lenses per Pentax designation) or manual focus (A-, M-, K-lenses per Pentax designation)
- M42 screw-mount lenses via a screw-on adapter - then everything is fully manual on the lens
-T2 screw-mount lenses, with another adaptor and again everything on the lens will be fully manual

Third party lenses, by Sigma, Tokina etc. usually have a small compatibility designation near the mount. For Pentax there is usually a small "K", "KA" or "PK" somewhere (be aware of the "PKR" designation, which is for Ricoh). Lenses for MInolta usually sport "MD", Canon is either "FD" or "EF", Nikon is mostly "N" or "Nik" - you get the idea. All theses latter designated lenses are unusable for you.

Ben
02-21-2009, 01:08 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Javaslinger Quote
There was a SMC 100-300 FA there for $89... Is this a good deal?

If they're ok for my camera, I guess they'll just fit??? How do I know if they are a 'K' mount? I didn't see a designation for this even on the Pentax branded lens....
The FA 100-300 was available new from B&H for $99 a few years ago, so I never have been able to convince myself that I should pay a lot for a used one.

A lens with the Pentax brand on it will almost certainly be a K-mount lens. A small number will say "645" or "6x7" on them, and they are for the 645 and 6x7 cameras. These lenses will also appear to be kind of big, kind of slow, kind of long and really expensive. (If they're cheap, buy them and resell on eBay.) Takumar, Super-Takumar and Super-Multi-coated Takumar are screw-mount lenses. Takumar Bayonet and Takumar-A are K-mount. Again, watch out for "6x7" in the name. Refer to this site's reviews for quality and price information.

Lenses from other big camera manufacturers won't fit, so rule out Minoltas, Canons, Nikons, etc. Don't rely on lens caps to identify brands. That leaves you with third-party lenses to identify, such as Sigma, Tamron, Tokina, Vivitar, Sears or others. The screw mount is easy to recognize, and you can carry an M42 adapter or screw-on cap with you to double-check the threads. Sometimes these mounts are marked U for Universal. That takes care of a host of brands you might not have heard of (yet), and leaves you with mystery bayonet lenses.

Some third-party lens makers put a big PK, PK-R, PK/A or similar on the lens or mount, but lack of identifiers is not unusual. Avoid lenses with small rectangular notches in the bayonet tabs. These are for Minolta or Konica. Remember the Ricoh pin but it's easy to fix, so don't let it keep you from a good deal.

There are a few lenses that use a system of interchangeable mounts. The common ones are Vivitar (TX and T4), Soligor (T4), and Tamron (Adaptall or Adapt-a-matic). If you find the correct K-mount adapter, you can buy lenses with the "wrong" mounts and swap them. The TX and T4 lenses have a rectangular protrusion below the aperture ring with O and L on it and a small tab sticking out of that. Also the aperture ring has aperture stops listed twice in both directions and different colors, like 16-11-8-5.6-4-2.8-2.8-4-5.6-8-11-16. Once you've seen one, they stick out a mile. Adaptall adapters are much harder to identify at a great distance.

These days, everyone knows to look stuff up on eBay before putting the price sticker on, but they don't always do that as carefully as they should. That's about all I can think of. Good luck shopping.

02-21-2009, 01:20 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Javaslinger Quote
There was a SMC 100-300 FA there for $89... Is this a good deal?

If they're ok for my camera, I guess they'll just fit??? How do I know if they are a 'K' mount? I didn't see a designation for this even on the Pentax branded lens....
You are right to be cautious... I've gotten a Ricoh lens stuck on my camera before and it was a bad feeling - luckily, it came back off after about 15 minutes of wiggling.

If the lens is Pentax brand it will work - period!
  • The older lenses (marked "PENTAX-M", and "SMC PENTAX") will need to be used in manual mode and you can meter using the green button.
  • Lenses marked PENTAX-A will allow automatic exposure modes just like your kit lens, but they are manual focus.
  • Lenses marked PENTAX-F or PENTAX-FA OR PENTAX-DA will be auto focus and allow auto exposure mode.

As for third party lens brands like Sigma, Tamron, Tokina, Vivitar, and many more - many of these were made for lots of different camera mounts so you can't assume that it's a pentax mount without careful study. Some will be labeled "PK" or similar which is a good sign, but PK-R or similar means Ricoh, and may get stuck on your camera. Be careful - if in doubt, take a few pictures of the questionable lens mount and post it up for us to argue about .
02-21-2009, 02:32 PM   #10
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QuoteQuote:
Javaslinger
There was a SMC 100-300 FA there for $89... Is this a good deal?
This lens is well received by the majority of the reviewers in our lens database--have a look here Pentax Lens Review Database - 100-300mm F4.7-5.8 ---------------there are also some prices to guide you. Best of luck.
02-21-2009, 03:08 PM   #11
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Also, this might be the right time to show you the takumar club...
https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-slr-lens-discussion/31601-takumar-club.html
02-21-2009, 03:21 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ben_Edict Quote
...Anything that has written Canon, Minolta, Konica, Yashica or Nikon on it, will not fit (without a knowledgeable mechanical adaption) - forget all these brands for a start...
Not quite true...before the Contax-Yashica (C/Y) bayonet mount, Yashica SLR lenses were M42 screw mount and compatible with a wide range of bodies including modern Pentax dSLRs. I even think that there have been some recent posts to this site taken with M42 Yashinons.

Steve
02-22-2009, 12:12 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
Not quite true...before the Contax-Yashica (C/Y) bayonet mount, Yashica SLR lenses were M42 screw mount and compatible with a wide range of bodies including modern Pentax dSLRs. I even think that there have been some recent posts to this site taken with M42 Yashinons.

Steve
Steve, I know that. I just dealt with M42 lenses on their own and secondly I think, for a newbie to the whole topic, some things can be simplified. He will this way (by simply ignoring Y) not really miss an extraordinary deal, but may be have little less to be concerned about... I have (before I switched to Pentax some 27 years ago) used Yashica/Contax.

Ben
02-22-2009, 01:10 PM   #14
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I don't know if this will help you, but here is a webpost with photographs of the major BAYONET lens mounts.

SLR Lens Mount Identification Guide

This links to the image of the Pentax K Mount. You can click the Post number in the upper right and print this post to take with you.



Pentax K and Pentax M42 (with the correct Pentax adapter) are your best starting points. There were literally hundreds of excellent Pentax lenses made from the early 60's (and before) through today that will fit and operate on any K-mount Pentax camera - a total of 24 million copies that will all fit your K-mount Pentax camera..
06-22-2009, 05:27 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by Just1MoreDave Quote
Some third-party lens makers put a big PK, PK-R, PK/A or similar on the lens or mount, but lack of identifiers is not unusual. Avoid lenses with small rectangular notches in the bayonet tabs. These are for Minolta or Konica. Remember the Ricoh pin but it's easy to fix, so don't let it keep you from a good deal.
I'm looking to buy a PKR mount lens (with an A setting on the aperture ring), i.e. one that potentially has the pin of doom. Has anyone successfully removed the pin without losing the ability to change aperture in body?
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