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01-21-2012, 11:16 AM   #1
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I want my K1000 back.

I'm new. I'm transient. I have ideas.

I basically joined because I'm trying to promote my crazy idea. Call me crazy, but don't some of us want our K1000s back? Mine is sitting here on my desk, but I mean... well... I wrote about it on my blog and I've decided to pepper photo sites with the idea to see if enough public support is behind it and if that public support might warrant action from Pentax. Basically I want a digital K1000. Simple. No-frills. Sturdy. Reliable.

-KT.

*EDIT*
as my initial post got edited by the moderator for being considered 'spam' here is the text of the blog post I mentioned above. here it is:
I WANT MY K1000 BACK!!!
No, no… it’s not been stolen. It still sits, somewhat neglected these days, in an old camera bag on my desk. I take it out from time to time to reminisce about the simpler days. Ah… the good ol days!
Despite huge leaps in technology giving us the ability to take a decent shot with our eyes closed, I still approach pit’cher takin with the same simplicity. I still spend time properly lining up a shot, sometimes giving myself cramps, knowing full well that I can crop & rotate it later on in some photo-editing software. There is a purity that is lost in digital. There is a skill set that is lost. There is a patience that is lost.
It’s going from fishing with a good friend in a wooden skiff in a lake to trolling with huge nets. Sure it’s easier, but where’s the fun in that?
In 2006 I ‘sold out and went digital’. Got me a Rebel XT (X-tra Trout baby… & don’t you forget it!) and slowly coddled my pride into accepting it over the next year or so. Upped the lens a year later as the kit lens is garbage. Then, in 08 I took the next big step… got me a shiny new 40D! Oooooooh! Aaaahhhhhh! I did this not because I needed it, but because I was planning on being ‘more professional’ and doing weddings & stuff so… it was a status symbol. Nothing more. So many bells and whistles (that I still don’t use), so much weight… and it’s big! Impressive looking! No on would doubt my photographic virility now! Anyone who’s been to a wedding in the last 5 years knows that 25% of the guests are sporting DSLRs themselves. The tell-tale sound of built-in flashes popping up like a chorus of plastic, electric crickets says that everyone is a photographer these days. So, to stand out, you need to be wielding the Hummer of DSLRs. Even still, with the 40D I’d get shown up occasionally.
Turns out I mostly don’t like doing weddings. It’s generally no fun as a photographer. And besides… I know I can shoot as good a shot with my XT as I can with my 40D. Like my 12 year old nephew said at the time ‘don’t they know? it’s not the camera it’s the person taking the pictures?’
Unless you’re shooting for billboards having anything above the (patronizingly named) ‘pro-sumer’ range is pointless. It’s a status symbol that says little about your skill but only speaks of your pocket-book.
So… about my K1000…
The past couple of years I’ve been wanting to downsize. The Olympus digital pen-e series came out and that peaked my interest, the Canon G series looked good-ish until I realized you cant change the lens… I really had some good looks at the Pen-Es but there was one thing that has been holding me back.
The lack of a built-in viewfinder.
Like I said, I still approach shooting like I did with film. I still see the world through a viewfinder. I can not get into looking at a little LED screen. I’ve always remarked that people hold digital cameras like stinky diapers: away from them with a pained look on their face. taking snaps is fine, whatever, but making art is an intimate experience. Holding a camera up to your face and scanning the frame with your eyeball to the minutest detail is a passionate act. It’s tantric. Focus in terms of photography is only partly about the lens, the rest, and equally important, is the inner focus.
So… there have been so many almosts in the digital camera world lately. There have been some close calls and if I could afford it I’m sure I’d own a Leica M-series by now… but I’s po. And really, rangefinders are good… but SLR… a mirror… seeing exactly what you’re shooting… that is the holy grail.
Got me thinking… with all the advances in technology surely we’re close to having the ability to make a digital camera and the associated lenses to the same specifications as my beloved K1000. The Olympus Pen-E series came close-ish in size, most new rangefinder & micro-4/3rds are close… but… no mirror. There have been so many close calls. So Many! So Many! So Many! So Many! (oh… have to look at that last link again.. looked like a built in viewfinder on one of them!)
I shoot Canon now, and Pentax of course when I dust it off… but the first company that gives me my K1000 in digital format is getting my next purchase.
I’d even go to Nikon!
Really, Pentax, you get first dibs! I just want a basic, sturdy, well designed camera. No bells and whistles. Just the facts, ma’am. Viewfinder, great sensor, great lenses, good range of ISOs… HEY! Here’s an idea!!! You can hire me as a consultant and we can call it The Pentax KT1000… huh? Has a nice ring to it doesn’t it???
I think so.
(I’ve sent a link to this entry to Pentax Corporation via their contact us page. If you agree with this blog entry, I encourage you to do the same! Maybe with enough pressure from consumers, Pentax will do it.)


Last edited by Parallax; 01-23-2012 at 10:52 AM. Reason: apparently I'm spam.
01-21-2012, 12:14 PM   #2
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Sure Thing!

Hi K.T., Welcome to the Forum!

"Basically I want a digital K1000. Simple. No-frills. Sturdy. Reliable."

Well, in my humble opinion, they've already made one. The K10 D.
Still around in used condition, $300-$400. Well worth it. Brick-like construction, as "Auto" or fully manual as you want. Solid, weather resistant, durable.
For use with manual-focus lenses, I'd suggest adding a Katz Eye focusing screen.
JMO,
Ron
01-21-2012, 12:20 PM   #3
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you'll have to read my blog post about it but the moderator deleted the link to it because I'm apparently SPAM. I'd link you to the blog but it will probably get deleted as SPAM. It's the January 5th entry. i'll be editing the original post to include the text of the blog entry. I'd link my site and blog in my signature, but I have to wait 3 days to do that.

...don't like being called spam...

thanks for the imput. I'll look into the camera.

Last edited by Parallax; 01-23-2012 at 10:54 AM.
01-21-2012, 12:23 PM   #4
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To those that want a "no-frills" model, what is stopping you from using any DSLR in full manual mode? (And to really get the full experience, with a manual focus lens with manual aperture.) Since the K1000 has a subset of features that are on any DSLR model, and you are not prevented from doing everything manually, I don't get it. The K10D is a good choice, but so is any other model -- manual operation is basically the same in all of them.

01-21-2012, 12:28 PM   #5
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Similar threads are going, with underwhelming support. As mentioned, you can use any advanced DSLR in dinosaur mode. There would not be much cost savings with a no frills camera.
01-21-2012, 12:34 PM   #6
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I do use it in full manual. I barely even understand most of the auto functions. (I shoot canon in digital.)

I understand the 'basic' camera responses to be 'buy the entry level DLSR from back in '06. I have that. my first DSLR purchase I walked in to the camera store & said 'i want a digital version of my K1000... what do you have?' they pointed out the Canon Rebel XT. I got it.

since then however there have been a few tech advances. Ideally picture, sensor quality would be better in my 'dream camera' but without all the unnecessary frills like video, HDR, creative functions & settings and all that auto nonsense. Auto focus is handy, sure, but that's it. My latest thought was to move sideways/down to the entry level DSLR (which is now technically almost as good if not better than my 40D) as I want the smaller body... but still there are so many useless functions that it clutters up the camera and (i assume) ads unnecessary size to the body.
01-21-2012, 12:42 PM   #7
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every new basic DSLR they come out with adds more nonsense & clutters the art with APPS.
01-21-2012, 12:49 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kreddible Trout Quote
I do use it in full manual. I barely even understand most of the auto functions. (I shoot canon in digital.)

I understand the 'basic' camera responses to be 'buy the entry level DLSR from back in '06. I have that. my first DSLR purchase I walked in to the camera store & said 'i want a digital version of my K1000... what do you have?' they pointed out the Canon Rebel XT. I got it.

since then however there have been a few tech advances. Ideally picture, sensor quality would be better in my 'dream camera' but without all the unnecessary frills like video, HDR, creative functions & settings and all that auto nonsense. Auto focus is handy, sure, but that's it. My latest thought was to move sideways/down to the entry level DSLR (which is now technically almost as good if not better than my 40D) as I want the smaller body... but still there are so many useless functions that it clutters up the camera and (i assume) ads unnecessary size to the body.
Certainly it adds cost, but not really size since the bulk of that stuff is in the software. The K-7 / K-5 body is about the smallest DSLR you're gonna find. They will never make a digital model without a screen (or a built-in flash), and all the other electronics take up space. Even a totally manual model would still have a couple dials and buttons. You could drop the image stabilization in a no-frills model (or you could just stick with the non-Pentax and you won't get it) and that might make it a bit smaller but I don't know. Anyway, the basic experience of using a manual camera is more or less preserved if that's the way you use it. You aren't required to use any of the advanced features (HDR, etc) so they don't "get in the way" -- you never have to think about them ever. The main thing is that you are paying for features you aren't using, but as has been discussed here before, the market for your true dream model is probably so small that you'd be paying a premium to get it.

If you really have to have a K1000 *EXACTLY*, then just use one. I know a professional wedding photographer that was still shooting everything on film last I checked...

01-21-2012, 01:00 PM   #9
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Why Repeat the Past

The focus motor finally died on my *ist DL2 and I have been using it ever since as my "digital K1000." I installed a Katz Eye focus screen but I use any lens I want since the focus motor doesn't work anyway. However, I do have to admit, I have been known to cheat once in a while and use aperture priority. It is fun and I have no intention of sending it in to get it fixed.

But, all that being true, it still is not the same as the K1000. I think the experience of using the K1000 is more a sum of all its' features and parts together (or lack of features if that is more appropriate) rather than just singling out one component like manual focus. There is a feel to handling a K1000, or any K camera for that matter, that is not replicated by using one of Pentax digital cameras, even on full manual.

However, as much as I enjoy my K1000, and I use it a lot, I don't think I want a digital one. Like the SV cameras and the Spotmatics, its time is in the past and while it produces marvelous images when used correctly, digital fills another need. I use them both for different reasons and I am very, very glad that I have that option. There are so many great ways to capture images today. I am no more ready to give up my K7 than I am my K1000. They are all wonderful cameras and should be enjoyed for what they are. In fact, I am seriously looking at the new options like the Q. Why repeat the past? I can already enjoy photography's past with an original K1000 while moving forward into photography's future as well.

Photography is so much fun right now!
01-21-2012, 01:11 PM   #10
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Trout,
Some of us oldtimers agree with you, but not enough to make a worthwhile market. But that's exactly why I spent $7K on a Leica M9 body. It's the only digital I can use exactly like my film cameras: controls in the same place, same function, same feel. Lenses have the same perspective. I almost never look at the LCD, although it is needed to change "film speed" or "film type."
Yes, I do appreciate the K-5, but it's in spite of all the "features" I'd rather not have. It's not about cost, it's because manual use is simply not as easy as with a K1000 (or LX, or...). I'd even consider $7K for a digital K1000, if it were done with the same philosophy as the M9.
It's not a matter of cheaper, and it's not a matter of "point and shoot" simplicity. The old manual cameras gave full control of every need, with very direct and consistent controls.
Cameras today have the same philosophy as "Windows" - keep throwing in gee-whiz features and change the way everything works on each new model.
99% of today's photographers will never understand the 1% of us that still prefer truly manual cameras, and we won't understand them.
As you might expect, I still drive a 1973 Beetle... People don't understand that either.
(Oh, and I develop new electronic and software technology for industry!)
01-21-2012, 01:11 PM   #11
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have you look at a fuji x100
it has a similar style of the k1000, big viewfinder and not a lot of "features".
01-21-2012, 01:19 PM   #12
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I'm nostalgic.

no, it's not that.

I don't want to live the past, I just want what I want.

Small. Sturdy. Simple.

Last edited by Parallax; 01-21-2012 at 08:17 PM.
01-21-2012, 01:22 PM   #13
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oh dear... that fuji one sure is pretty! (but fuji? I don't' trust them for anything but film. fuji digital sits in the same world as kodak digital to me though I'm sure they've advanced in the last 5 years.)
01-21-2012, 01:27 PM   #14
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When in full manual mode, all controls you need can be gotten to with the front/rear/top dials,iso & green buttons. You never have to go menu hopping, etc or even look at the screen. And it has an optical through-the-viewfinder DOF preview option. (You can set the screen to display nothing if you want -- no "status screen", no review after taking a shot, and if you leave it on M mode I think you can get it be totally blank all the time except when turning it on, can't you?) It may not be a K1000 specifically, but it is sure seems basically the same as any manual film camera (except for the smaller view).
01-21-2012, 01:31 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kreddible Trout Quote
oh dear... that fuji one sure is pretty! (but fuji? I don't' trust them for anything but film. fuji digital sits in the same world as kodak digital to me though I'm sure they've advanced in the last 5 years.)
Why? Fuji is supposedly on the cutting-edge digital sensor-wise. They certainly managed the transition to digital much better than Kodak...
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