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09-19-2013, 03:05 AM   #1
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Hi everyone :D

Hi I'm Valentina from Italy. I have a Pentax P3, it was my father's camera. I would like to take some new lenses to replace my old-broken-dark Vivitar 28-210 f.3,5-5,6.
I'd like to know what do you think of the P3, too. I don't have much experience in other cameras, and I like mine, but I was thinking about shifting to a digital camera, though I still don't know which one wuold be the best choice.
I hope to some good hint since I've just decided to go deeper into photography.


09-19-2013, 03:43 AM   #2
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Welcome!

Hello Valentina, welcome to the Forum!
The P3 was an inexpensive manual-focus, manual and auto aperture film camera, simple to use. It is capable of taking good photos if handled properly, but you may find yourself looking for manual (only) lenses, used and older, since the most modern lenses lack an aperture ring and have manual focus as a secondary function.
The other problem is the constant expense of film and developing, as film itself is gradually harder to find. I do hope there will always be some film available (particularly black + White) as I do use it sometimes, but not as my primary photographic medium.
My suggestion is to consider switching to digital photography for your main photographic use. While the initial cost is higher, you do not have the constant expense of film and developing, plus with Pentax digital cameras, you can use all the old lenses, in addition to the newer ones.
A very good bargain right now in digital Pentax bodies is the K-30. Since it was recently replaced by the K-50, prices have dropped dramatically, a new K-30 body and kit zoom of 18-55mm lens sells for around $500 USD currently. This is a full-featured DSLR with auto (and manual) focus, very good reviews and performance, and has several shooting modes from full auto, program, aperture priority (Av), shutter priority(Tv) and full manual.
If you are serious about photography, I believe this would be the best direction to take.
Good Luck!
Ron
09-19-2013, 04:52 AM   #3
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Welcome to the Forum, Valentina. I have to agree with what rbefky (Ron) says. The P3 was great in its day but I would not recommend playing film as a way to get started today. It is much harder to get film developed now that digital has taken over. Of course, there is nothing to stop you developing your own, but that is probably not the best place to start. One of the more interesting things about digital is that you can manipulate your images on a computer to get the picture that you want. It is the equivalent of manipulating the development process with film in a darkroom, but much more powerful and easier in many ways.
You have a great range of choice in digital. You will find a lot of bias towards Pentax here (after all, it is the Pentax forum) but you may decide on another make of camera. The important thing is to get a camera that you will use a lot and that will give you the images that you want. If you are serious about getting deeper into photography a DSLR (digital single lens reflex) camera like the K-30 would be a good place to start. One of the advantages with Pentax cameras is that every Pentax lens ever made (and a lot of lenses from other manufacturers) can still be used on the latest Pentax cameras. Many of us enjoy working with the older manual lenses because they are fine quality and often cost very little. So make your choice and if you decide to jump in the deep end with a Pentax DSLR (or anything else Pentax) you will find lots of information on this site and lots of people willing to give advice. This is a very friendly Forum.
Peter
09-19-2013, 09:30 AM   #4
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Welcome to PF and bonjour from France ... enjoy the forum and please post us an image or two soon ... Salut, J

09-19-2013, 02:38 PM   #5
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Ciao Valentina!
I'm going to give you some conflicting advice. I'm going to guess that you might have already considered buying a digital camera but are drawn to the film camera you have. To which I'd say, bravo (brava)! I've been shooting more and more film lately and I love it. It looks beautiful and the mystery about it (did I get the shot? How will my pictures turn out?) makes things really fun. I find that my success rate is much higher with film than with digital.

I also find that it's pretty economical to develop. Here in the states I spend under $10 to develop a role of film and have it scanned (to a CD or onto a USB drive), and the drugstore I go to will do it in about an hour. That's not bad considering the time I'd spend to download images, sort them in my image editing software, etc. The film itself ranges $3 to $10 a roll (36 exposures). People argue about which is ultimately more expensive but, to me, that's besides the point. I like shooting both, and film makes me happy.

As far as lenses, I would buy a Pentax 50mm, either a f/1.7 or 1.4 (although the 2.0 is fine). This is a very common and very cheap lens that takes *great* pictures. You can get a wider lens or a telephoto but if you can only have one lens for your film camera, make it a "fast 50".

No, the P3 is not the greatest Pentax film camera. But it's more than capable of producing great images (see for yourself: Flickr Search: pentax p3), and being a lot of fun. If the film bug bites, you can always upgrade to an MX or something similar.

In the meantime, enjoy!
09-21-2013, 02:25 AM   #6
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Thank you everyone!
I've always developed and printed my films, though the printing was a little bit expensive, but without printing and just scanning the price was much cheaper.
Never the less, I think that I'll get a digital camera, and k30 would be my first choice, so I'm waiting for a good offer!
I'll keep my P3, because I really love shooting with b/n films!
Have a nice day, Valentina
09-21-2013, 03:17 AM   #7
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Welcome to the forum, judging by all the good comments around here, you should enjoy the K30 once you get her.

You have a beautiful quality of light at times in Italy, please show us some of your Naples.
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