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01-15-2014, 01:04 PM   #1
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K-3 old lenses issue and daddy style solution

I run into an unexpected problem and even more unexpected solution with my new Pentax K3. I have a collection of older Pentax lenses I inherited from my dad. Some of them even have an "Asahi Optic Co" engraving. I put a tele-zoom in the camera and to my dissapointment discovered it failed to work. In the viewfinder I just saw "F--" and nothing else, and I could not take any pictures. In auto mode (green mode) the camera still adapted ISO and shutter time but no actual action.

However I could take "empty" pictures without a lens at all.

After some experimentation I discovered that the camera did not function if I short circuited the electric contacts between the house and the lense. For example if I put a knife blade over the contacts on the camera house I triggered the malfunction. This explains why old lenses don't work: When I mount the old lenses, they have no electrical contacts so they to just short circuit the contacts with the stainless steel ring on the lens that touches the camera house.

My simple solution was to put on a stripe of plastic tape on the section of the lenses where they touch the contacts on the house. Then the contacts are not short circuited and the old lenses works.

I think the old lenses should work on a new camera. My old M-mounted lenses works with the M to K converter. Is this a problem other people than I have, or am I alone? Is there a setting on the camera to work with to get around this?

01-15-2014, 01:08 PM   #2
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You must have not read this guide

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/54-pentax-lens-articles/110657-how-use-me...k-x-k-7-a.html

You'll need to configure a custom function and use M mode, as outlined in the guide.

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01-15-2014, 01:13 PM   #3
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If the K3 is like all the others, you need to set aperture permitted in the custom functions, and set the aperture on the lens. Use green button to meter. You will always see F---, but you know what aperture you have it set on. You can then use manual mode, or I sometimes use AV with manual lens when I want to shoot wide open with it.
01-15-2014, 01:14 PM   #4
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It is definitely possibly without workarounds. There should be a option in your camera settings.
For the K-30 i had to enable "Using Aperture Ring" under the Custom Settings Menu.
After that you will still get no Aperture Information because the newer cameras dont have the mechanical transmission built in that is used by these lenses. To correctly expose you need to use the manual mode and stopdown metering (which is on the green button close to the trigger for the K-30). The camera can not continually calculate the exposure settings for an unknown aperture but will do a single measurement by pressing the stopdown button.

Edit: to slow...

01-15-2014, 01:15 PM   #5
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FWIW, I am currently testing K3 metering and exposure with a fairly large collection of manual m42, K and M lenses on my K3 and I plan to do an extensive post this coming weekend.

Short story is the K3 Green Button / Optical Preview metering is quite good with manual aperture K-mount lenses, but there remain challenges with Takumars. I suggest you read the instruction threads and carefully follow the settings and steps - you will be pleasantly surprised!!
01-15-2014, 01:19 PM   #6
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Enabling the Aperture Ring worked for me with old lenses......with outstanding results....
01-15-2014, 01:38 PM   #7
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I now feel like a newbie. I turned on the Enable Aperture Ring mode and it works. I remember when I bought the K 100 D in 2007 I had the exact same problem and solution.

But now I wonder; what is the difference between turning on the Aperture Ring setting, and tricking it like I did with a piece of plastic tape? Is there something the camera do not do with the plastic tape trick that it is supposed to do? Im gonna have to read the documentation provided by Adam above too.
01-15-2014, 02:03 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by FilipWessman Quote
But now I wonder; what is the difference between turning on the Aperture Ring setting, and tricking it like I did with a piece of plastic tape? Is there something the camera do not do with the plastic tape trick that it is supposed to do? Im gonna have to read the documentation provided by Adam above too.
Without the contacts shorted it will assume it is an M42 lens, which it has no control over the aperture, so the lens will stay wide open no matter what you set the ring to. This is a problem with some old third party K mount lenses since they have an anodized black mount that is non-conductive.

01-15-2014, 02:12 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by FilipWessman Quote
I run into an unexpected problem and even more unexpected solution with my new Pentax K3. I have a collection of older Pentax lenses I inherited from my dad. Some of them even have an "Asahi Optic Co" engraving. I put a tele-zoom in the camera and to my dissapointment discovered it failed to work. In the viewfinder I just saw "F--" and nothing else, and I could not take any pictures. In auto mode (green mode) the camera still adapted ISO and shutter time but no actual action.

However I could take "empty" pictures without a lens at all.

After some experimentation I discovered that the camera did not function if I short circuited the electric contacts between the house and the lense. For example if I put a knife blade over the contacts on the camera house I triggered the malfunction. This explains why old lenses don't work: When I mount the old lenses, they have no electrical contacts so they to just short circuit the contacts with the stainless steel ring on the lens that touches the camera house.

My simple solution was to put on a stripe of plastic tape on the section of the lenses where they touch the contacts on the house. Then the contacts are not short circuited and the old lenses works.

I think the old lenses should work on a new camera. My old M-mounted lenses works with the M to K converter. Is this a problem other people than I have, or am I alone? Is there a setting on the camera to work with to get around this?
You know,

If you put a lens "in" a camera, it'll jam....:^)~
01-15-2014, 09:34 PM   #10
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Can't test it now, but if I remember correctly you need shorted contacts to get catch-in-focus working.
01-16-2014, 06:37 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by FilipWessman Quote
I now feel like a newbie. I turned on the Enable Aperture Ring mode and it works. I remember when I bought the K 100 D in 2007 I had the exact same problem and solution.
.

I'm pretty sure I have forgotten everthing I learned in 2007 by now.
01-16-2014, 06:42 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by sterretje Quote
Can't test it now, but if I remember correctly you need shorted contacts to get catch-in-focus working.


Yes. You can even use catch in focus on non contact extension tubes by sanding off the the black coating.
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