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09-25-2017, 05:33 AM   #1
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Refconverter M, modification

The old refconverter can still be a very useful accessory, this came in various versions but the most useful models are the M and the A.
The A version which has a slightly wider field of view can be quite difficult to find on the used market and commands a higher price.
Im not sure are any optical differences between the two models but there are obvious physical differences which can be seen on the link below:

Pentax Focusing Aids

After seeing this I decided to attempt a simple modification to my Refconverter M with great success, and detail the mod below:

Firstly remove the 4 tiny screws and detach the shoe fitting assembly.
Lift out the optical block, being careful not to lose the central spindle.
Identify the 1X light tube within the optical block, (the one without a lens in it)
Remove and discard the odd shaped light baffle in the outside of the 1X tube by prising it out, it is a thin metal plate that is just glued into position.
Do not remove the circular light baffle from the inner side of the optical block, without this fitted there is a slight increase in flare through the Refconverter.
Refit optical block to Refconverer.

Using a small half round file remove the flat section in the cutout of the shoe fitting to form a complete circle.
Refit the shoe fitting to the Refconverter.

Mine works well on the cameras I have tried so far, that is Pentax K2, Pentax MX, Pentax Super A and various Canon DSLRs, each time I can see all of the viewfinder information.
Obviously it will still have the restricted view when used in the 2X position.

Second picture shows shoe fitting after modification.

Attached Images
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Canon EOS 50D  Photo   

Last edited by Ray-uk; 09-25-2017 at 05:36 AM. Reason: spelling mistake
09-25-2017, 07:30 AM   #2
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I take it the point of the mod is to increase the field of view in the viewfinder. Useful to know this can be done, thanks for posting.

I routinely use a magnifier to aid manual focus with my array of MF lenses, particularly long focal lengths. One aspect that isn't mentioned is that the greater the magnification offered by the magnifier, the dimmer the image viewed. This is exactly analogous to loss of stops with a tc, obviously this is only affecting the image in the VF. This is the main reason I hardly use my magnifier M (2x), and stick with my tenpa 1.36x. And for me right angle magnifiers are inconvenient for general use.
09-25-2017, 08:54 AM - 1 Like   #3
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On the topic of refconvertor mods, a Minolta ref convertor can be adapted to Pentax (at least the K10D, K5 and K-1) by sanding/filing down the thickness of the face of the mount shoe.
09-25-2017, 11:40 AM   #4
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I wonder if the mask is the only change between the M and A refconverters. The A has rather complex opening:

Great DIY mod though.

09-25-2017, 11:59 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by Not a Number Quote
I wonder if the mask is the only change between the M and A refconverters. The A has rather complex opening:

Great DIY mod though.
The one you show in the picture looks more like the M, if you look at the link in my first post you can see the two side by side.
There may well be some optical difference but I do know the mod allows me to see viewfinder information outside of the frame that I couldn't see before.

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