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12-13-2012, 01:26 PM   #151
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*cough* SMC Pentax 55mm F1.8 Reviews - K Prime Lenses - Pentax Lens Reviews & Lens Database *cough*

Hmm? What? No K-mount 55mm f/1.8... I'm sure that's not right...

12-14-2012, 03:04 AM   #152
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QuoteOriginally posted by Mareket Quote
*cough* SMC Pentax 55mm F1.8 Reviews - K Prime Lenses - Pentax Lens Reviews & Lens Database *cough*

Hmm? What? No K-mount 55mm f/1.8... I'm sure that's not right...
Rad291 referred to his "k-mount Takumar 55mm 1.8" although in a later post he changed it to "SMC Pentax". There's a big difference. When Pentax introduced the K-mount they dropped the Takumar name. All K-series lenses were badged 'SMC PENTAX', including the 55mm/1.8. Although the optical design was the same they differed in other respects - the useful auto/manual switch was deleted, it was given a 52mm filter thread and the K-series 'new look'. I have both versions on the desk in front of me. It's amazing how much chunkier the K-mount SMC PENTAX looks for the same piece of glass.

The Takumar name was revived later for a couple of budget lenses - an insult in my opinion to one of the best-regarded brand names in photography.

I hope rad291, when he gets his K-adapters, enjoys the extra functionality of the screw-mount Tak. Many screw mount lens manufacturers incorporated an auto/manual feature of some sort - switch, lever, button or cable thread - essential for use with tubes, bellows, or reversing ring.
12-14-2012, 09:34 AM   #153
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QuoteOriginally posted by unfocused Quote
Rad291 referred to his "k-mount Takumar 55mm 1.8" although in a later post he changed it to "SMC Pentax". There's a big difference. When Pentax introduced the K-mount they dropped the Takumar name. All K-series lenses were badged 'SMC PENTAX', including the 55mm/1.8. Although the optical design was the same they differed in other respects - the useful auto/manual switch was deleted, it was given a 52mm filter thread and the K-series 'new look'. I have both versions on the desk in front of me. It's amazing how much chunkier the K-mount SMC PENTAX looks for the same piece of glass.

The Takumar name was revived later for a couple of budget lenses - an insult in my opinion to one of the best-regarded brand names in photography.

I hope rad291, when he gets his K-adapters, enjoys the extra functionality of the screw-mount Tak. Many screw mount lens manufacturers incorporated an auto/manual feature of some sort - switch, lever, button or cable thread - essential for use with tubes, bellows, or reversing ring.
Sounds interesting. I have to check into those pieces of equipment. Thanks.
12-14-2012, 10:26 AM   #154
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Aah, touché yeah it isn't a takumar. Though I never really liked the M42 lenses. I can see how some people might enjoy using the auto and manual modes, but I much prefer the way K-mount lenses work and look (most of the time, and in terms of size, aren't the M lenses smaller than the takumars?). 52mm filter threads do suck though.

And I've never needed an auto/manual switch when working with tubes or reversing :S Am I doing something wrong?

12-14-2012, 03:21 PM   #155
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QuoteOriginally posted by Mareket Quote
Aah, touché yeah it isn't a takumar. Though I never really liked the M42 lenses. I can see how some people might enjoy using the auto and manual modes, but I much prefer the way K-mount lenses work and look (most of the time, and in terms of size, aren't the M lenses smaller than the takumars?). 52mm filter threads do suck though.

And I've never needed an auto/manual switch when working with tubes or reversing :S Am I doing something wrong?
In the days of M42 screw, non-auto tubes and bellows were just about affordable but since there was no direct linkage to the camera body you needed a way to stop down the lens, hence the auto/manual switch. For extreme close-ups it was best to use a twin cable release, which triggered the shutter and stopped the lens down simultaneously without disturbing the critical focus and composition. For this purpose many German M42 lenses were cable threaded. For my S3 and Spotmatic I had a Schacht 90mm and a Schneider Tele-Xenar 135mm both with cable thread. You could buy a small pushbutton that screwed into the thread if you didn't want to mess with cables. If your lens wasn't cable-threaded (e.g. a Tak) you could get a short extension tube with a built-in mechanism that accepted a cable and operated a pusher plate that acted on the lens pin. Reversing the lens you had the same stop-down problem unless you were happy shooting wide open.

In normal on-camera use the auto/manual switch was for checking depth of field. Olympus retained this feature on the OM-series lenses right up to the end - in their case it's a pushbutton and far more conveniently positioned.

Fast-forward to the K-mount M-series cameras, I remember holding off buying the ME Super in the hope that they would eventually fit a stop-down preview, which they never did. The M lenses didn't have the auto/manual switch either, so the outfit's creative potential was limited. Nice camera otherwise. Instead I bought a Ricoh XR-7 as a second string to my MX. I still have them.
01-01-2013, 10:10 AM   #156
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Do you eventually get tired of setting the focal length?

I'm new to the forum, thinking of getting a used Pentax camera body to work with my old Pentax lenses, and I've read this posting and the article by Robert Donovan. My one remaining question: Every time you turn the camera off and on again, it seems that you have to let the camera know the focal length. I think this is only for the shake reduction to work, so if this gets tedious, can you just turn off the shake reduction feature? Or is setting the focal length so quick that it becomes second nature to set it every time you turn the camera on? (I think I might get tired of this.) My cheap Nikon Coolpix turns itself off automatically after a number of seconds to save the battery. This happens a lot because I am sometimes slow to take a picture. If this happens with the Pentax I think it would be annoying to have to set the focal length each time. (Quite often I'm ready to take a picture with the Nikon, and it turns itself off.)

There was also something about getting the flashing 'F -.' screen, and having to navigate to the Custom Menu and change the “Using aperture ring” setting to “Permitted”: For some lenses, do you have to do this every time you turn the camera on? I could imagine this getting very tedious! (I'm hoping this only happens once, and the setting will be stored permanently in the camera's memory.)

I wonder if there is anyone out there who uses only the old Pentax lenses, or if everyone eventually gets a new lens to work with the digital camera.

Thanks,
Peter
01-01-2013, 10:36 AM   #157
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QuoteOriginally posted by PeterChris Quote
I'm new to the forum, thinking of getting a used Pentax camera body to work with my old Pentax lenses, and I've read this posting and the article by Robert Donovan. My one remaining question: Every time you turn the camera off and on again, it seems that you have to let the camera know the focal length. I think this is only for the shake reduction to work, so if this gets tedious, can you just turn off the shake reduction feature? Or is setting the focal length so quick that it becomes second nature to set it every time you turn the camera on? (I think I might get tired of this.) My cheap Nikon Coolpix turns itself off automatically after a number of seconds to save the battery. This happens a lot because I am sometimes slow to take a picture. If this happens with the Pentax I think it would be annoying to have to set the focal length each time. (Quite often I'm ready to take a picture with the Nikon, and it turns itself off.)

There was also something about getting the flashing 'F -.' screen, and having to navigate to the Custom Menu and change the “Using aperture ring” setting to “Permitted”: For some lenses, do you have to do this every time you turn the camera on? I could imagine this getting very tedious! (I'm hoping this only happens once, and the setting will be stored permanently in the camera's memory.)

I wonder if there is anyone out there who uses only the old Pentax lenses, or if everyone eventually gets a new lens to work with the digital camera.

Thanks,
Peter
The custom setting to allow manual aperture setting needs only be done once and you can leave it there, doesn't affect A lenses.

The focal length selection is for the SR to work and you get used to it, mostly it's just pressing the OK button if you haven't switched lenses.
It only needs to be done when powering on with the switch, waking up from auto-off doesn't produce the dialog.

Hope that helps you
01-01-2013, 10:43 AM   #158
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QuoteOriginally posted by PeterChris Quote
I'm new to the forum, thinking of getting a used Pentax camera body to work with my old Pentax lenses, and I've read this posting and the article by Robert Donovan. My one remaining question: Every time you turn the camera off and on again, it seems that you have to let the camera know the focal length. I think this is only for the shake reduction to work, so if this gets tedious, can you just turn off the shake reduction feature? Or is setting the focal length so quick that it becomes second nature to set it every time you turn the camera on? (I think I might get tired of this.) My cheap Nikon Coolpix turns itself off automatically after a number of seconds to save the battery. This happens a lot because I am sometimes slow to take a picture. If this happens with the Pentax I think it would be annoying to have to set the focal length each time. (Quite often I'm ready to take a picture with the Nikon, and it turns itself off.)
The focal length setting will stay on whatever it was last set to, so if you have the same lens mounted and turn the camera off and on as you go about using it, it will be ready with the correct number when you turn it on and you just press ok. Even if you aren't paying attention and press the shutter or some other button, it will still silently select that number. So as long as you don't hit left/right to change it when you turn in on, it will be correct. Now, when you put a different (manual) lens on, you have to pay attention to make sure you set that one correctly, but really it is no big deal. The only time it is annoying is if you mount a lens, but then don't turn the camera on right away and then later you want to get a quick shot and the screen comes up with the wrong number and you lose those precious seconds. So set it when you mount it, even if you are just packing your bag.

Also, if you have SR turned OFF, it won't ask you but it will still put whatever number it last had in the EXIF data. So with manual lenses, I always turn SR on first and put in the focal length even if I want to have SR off for whatever reason. (There is a separate menu item to set the focal length somewhere, but that's a pain to get to so I just turn SR on and power cycle the camera if I need to input it and it hasn't asked me, and then turn SR off again.)

01-01-2013, 10:52 AM   #159
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QuoteOriginally posted by vonBaloney Quote
Now, when you put a different (manual) lens on, you have to pay attention to make sure you set that one correctly, but really it is no big deal.
Hehe, forgetting that can give funny results. Just the other day I was wondering why my shots with a 58mm were so blurry even though I thought I was very still. Turned out I had forgot changing back after using my 500mm so the SR was overcompensating any movement by almost factor 10x
01-01-2013, 10:57 AM   #160
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QuoteOriginally posted by enemix Quote
Hehe, forgetting that can give funny results. Just the other day I was wondering why my shots with a 58mm were so blurry even though I thought I was very still. Turned out I had forgot changing back after using my 500mm so the SR was overcompensating any movement by almost factor 10x
Yeah, the larger the setting the more the camera will make noises compensating with large movements, so if you have a 28 or a 50 on and the camera seems to be making a racket, then be sure to double-check the setting...
01-01-2013, 11:08 AM   #161
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QuoteOriginally posted by vonBaloney Quote
Yeah, the larger the setting the more the camera will make noises compensating with large movements, so if you have a 28 or a 50 on and the camera seems to be making a racket, then be sure to double-check the setting...
Yeah, but since I rarely ever use LV the sensor movement sounds kind of drown in the sounds of the mirror flipping XD
01-01-2013, 01:57 PM   #162
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Sounds like it's not an inconvenience at all. This is a great forum. Thanks!

Peter
01-01-2013, 05:49 PM   #163
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Oh, the other potential gotcha. If SR is off when you turn the camera on, it won't ask. But then if you turn SR on, it still won't ask so if the setting from last time is from another lens, it will have the wrong number. Plus the EXIF data being wrong as I pointed out above. So always set it with manual lenses, even if you aren't using SR because you may change your mind after a few shots.
01-04-2013, 04:37 PM   #164
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I second what vonBaloney said: It's quite easy. No trouble at all, just hit the ok button on startup if you have left the manual lens mounted. I am beginning to shoot only manual. Seriously. It's that easy. Focusing is another matter, but I am learning by leaps and bounds each day.
01-05-2013, 10:22 PM   #165
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Thanks to everybody for all the information. Earlier in the week I ordered a used camera body from KEH, and it came two days ago. It was overwhelming at first, with all the ways to control the camera, but this was what I was looking for, after a much-too-simple point-and-shoot camera. Now I'm using my old Pentax lenses again. (I was actually thinking of selling them. Sometimes there's an advantage to not cleaning out a closet.)

The camera that I chose is a Pentax K 10D. I don't mind the manual focusing at all (I did not buy a new lens to go with the camera), and with the focus ready-light and hexagonal icon that appears in the viewfinder, it is so easy. And, as Timmijo wrote, I may ultimately use manual mode most of the time. This is what I did with my old stereo camera. No light meter, just got to know what exposure to use, with the guidelines printed in the film box. But this isn't so easy with low light, so having the meter is nice. I've been trying the camera in low light (never liked the look of flash photography), and I really like the results. Need to experiment with the white balance. I tried the tungsten setting, and some shadows looked purplish. Strange effect, but it may have been because I was mixing incandescent and fluorescent light.

Oh, and I just checked the shutter count for the camera. I wonder why the detailed data that goes with the photo has a 10-digit number (which would be in the billions), then when you do the upload to the myshuttercount website, it translates it to the real number. Is it encrypted in the camera?

And the downloadable Pentax user manual is so LONG, but necessary for someone new to this level of digital photography.

Peter
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