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11-06-2018, 03:08 PM - 3 Likes   #1
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Hello from an old pro

Hi, Thought I would join up for info on older Pentax cameras. I am an old ex-professional photographer - cut my teeth on a Zenith back in the day and have owned quite a lot of gear at various times in my life -

Agfa Silette (learnt the basics of photography with it - dads old camera)

Zenith E (learnt my craft with it)

Pentax Spotmatic (lovely little box)

Pentax ME (hated it)

Olympus OM-1 (Tied first place with my Nikon F)

Olympus OM-4Tii (horror box)

Fujica ST605 (x3) (Great low cost, lightweight camera)

Box Brownie Mk1 (learnt composition with it - thats a story)

Canon AE-1 (bit of a dud I thought)

Nikon F Photomic Ftn (tied first place with my beloved OM-1)

Nikon F301 (amazing beastie and running mate for the Nikon Fs)

Olympus C2500 (First digital I owned)

Olympus E-10 (when they were crazy cash - had two of them and both blew up - one of them spectacularly on a shoot - free fireworks display for my models )

Olympus E-20 (when they were even more cash)

Lord knows how many lenses, flashes, filters, lights, strobes, brollies, backdrops, props and assorted other stuff I have owned over the years.

When I quit the pro game I pretty much gave up on photography (for the last few years I had given up I think in my heart - it had become a chore) so I sold most of my gear. Went down to a happy snappy digital and let it be. Recently though I have had a reawakening after I bought a running Zenith B, then I grabbed a Zorki 4 and then a few weeks ago I was rummaging in a charity shop and there at the bottom of a box of junk was an almost mint Pentax KX. Now I have to be honest my ME was a camera I totally hated - no particular reason it just never felt right to me and I don't think I ever got a good pic from it. But I thought 'well its unlikely I am going to find a Nikon F at any sort of reasonable price and at least its a film SLR' so I grumblingly parted with 60 for the camera plus a collection of bits in the box with it (Vivitar Zoom, Cokin Filters and some assorted lens caps, straps and odds and ends) and went on my way..

Took it home, replaced the light seals, put a new battery in it and hola - if only I had bought one of these years ago instead of the very duff ME I might have looked more favourably on Pentax which after the ME I had avoided like the plague. The Spotmatic was a lovely thing but the ME just put me right off. I had a similar experience with the Canon AE-1 and then was daft enough to risk more cash on an EOS when they first came out - mine was assembled by someone with a grudge against Canon I think because it had to rate as the most unreliable bit of kit ever. After that I stuck with Nikon gear.

Anyway the KX has totally impressed me even though I haven't yet put a single film through it - its solid, simple controls, and just feels right - its what an SLR should be - the 1.7 lens looks sharp enough. I have to think this was a beloved treasure to someone because its near mint and there was even a UV filter on the lens. I will post up once I run some film through it and let you know how it runs.

Anyway thanks for having me - look forward to reading more on the SLR section.


11-06-2018, 03:41 PM   #2
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Welcome to the forum Mel.
Great intro post!

Kind regards,
(New Zealand)
11-06-2018, 04:21 PM   #3
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Welcome to the forum and congratulations on the KX. That way my first SLR and I still own it. just had it cla'ed. It is a fantastic camera, one of the very best Pentax. Do share some photos with us and please give us a further critique of your new KX.
11-06-2018, 05:05 PM   #4
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Welcome to the forum! Looking forward to seeing your photos with that KX.

11-06-2018, 10:20 PM - 1 Like   #5
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Hi Mel, and welcome from Australia.
11-07-2018, 02:48 AM   #6
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I looked up the user reviews here.
The lx, kx, mx in order are the 3 favorites. The me is way down the list.
11-07-2018, 02:50 AM   #7
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Welcome to the forum, with your experience, we know who to send the difficult questions to...
11-07-2018, 06:35 AM   #8
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Welcome from just over the border i Hampshire ...

11-07-2018, 01:39 PM   #9
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Thanks guys - heres a pic NOT shot with the KX - this was shot with a teeny happy snappy with four pics, merged with Panorama Maker Pro and then processed with PhotoImpact from about 10 years ago when I had packed up being pro. I shot for years with a succession of happy snappy digitals - these days my interest is mostly landscape and architecture but I always like this pic as it shows how far you can go with a teeny 2.5 Megapix camera and some post process.

As soon as I run some film through the KX I will scan something (assuming its any good)

Thanks again for warm welcome -

Attached Images
11-07-2018, 03:56 PM   #10
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Welcome. The KX is similar to the MX I learned on. Look forward to seeing your shots.

I can recommend Ilford for processing and hi-res scanning of your film ILFORD Black & White Prints, Film Developing, Scanning, Digital Silver Prints - HARMAN Lab - Home Page
11-09-2018, 12:29 PM   #11
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Welcome Mel!

Thank you for the interesting intro post. And have fun with your KX. I bet you will!
11-10-2018, 04:25 AM   #12
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I laughed out loud at the OM4ti being called a horror box. If my intro is approved, you'll see I posted a pic of my old MX along with the OM4 I got for my partner. But I've already been thinking maybe it was a mistake and I've been contemplating replacing it with an OM1 when the opportunity presents. I feel like she'd enjoy shooting the OM1 far more.
11-10-2018, 11:58 AM   #13
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Singemonkey - my OM-4 was dreadful. I loved the OM-1 so much that when I saw a near mint OM-4 going for a song complete with a motor drive I snapped it up. This was back in the day when they were still making them. Mine was a pain - the batteries went flat just looking at the camera, if it was cold you ended to carry about a dozen spares with you. The batteries were tough too get hold of even in the day that were made. Your chances of finding any outside of a major city were nil.

The metering was dreadful - I could make a guess as to metering and be closer to right than the camera ever was. After about a month of using it mine just became a hanger queen. If I used it at all it was always in full manual mode with a handheld lightmeter. Eventually I got rid of it and to be honest its a camera I would buy again only for the sake of collecting. Together with the AE-1 those two cameras completely put me off ever having a camera make its own choices about exposure. After that I stayed fully manual until the digital revolution came along.
11-10-2018, 02:02 PM   #14
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Yeah. I read that a lot of the original OM4s just eat batteries continually. Luckily not all of them do, and this one definitely does not seem to be one of them. It's pretty light on batteries. But it does have some other weird issues. It's also pretty heavy for its size compared to a mechanical camera.
11-10-2018, 05:25 PM   #15
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Well the final outing for my OM-4 was the Jean Michel Jarre concert in London Docklands - I thought there will be a huge crowd, chances of having something broken or stolen are high so I will take the least valuable camera with me (value to me that is - not what it cost) so I took the OM-4 and knowing its habit of eating batteries and knowing it would be cold I took a fair few batteries. To be fair I was shooting a lot on the day but even so I used all of the 6-8 batteries I took with me. It was bitingly cold and the batteries were struggling almost from the start despite me stuffing them in my bra to keep them warm - they don't like the cold.
The real downer was that when the rolls were developed out of probably 8 - 10 rolls of film I had not much more than 5 usable shots. Metering was at fault but I also think the camera was suffering shutter problems possibly due to the cold and perhaps iffy batteries. After that it was sold off to fund more Nikon kit. I would wish you well with your OM-4 - I have to say mine in black finish with its 1.2 lens and motor drive did look the part but it was always a sheep in wolfs clothing.

I am off to Tokyo next year and really (REALLY) hoping to be able to pick up some Nikon Fs at a more reasonable price than I can find here in the UK.

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