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04-09-2012, 10:50 AM - 1 Like   #46
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QuoteOriginally posted by Todd Adamson Quote
Ugh...not so fast. This camera is an ergonomic nightmare! My fingers are sore from messing with those hard-to-turn dials. The dials are awful. You really can't turn them with one finger. So basically, the camera forces me to shoot in aperture priority, because quick, intuitive changing of shutter speed, which I have come to depend on because I prefer to shoot in Manual, isn't possible..
This is nonsense. The camera is particularly suited for shooting in aperture priority and manual; especially in concert with the green button. The dial is easy to adjust with one finger; thats how it is meant to be used. As someone who prefers aperture rings I'll say that the MZ-S is the best SLR ever when it comes to ergonomics.

04-09-2012, 12:07 PM   #47
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QuoteOriginally posted by Pål Jensen Quote
This is nonsense. The camera is particularly suited for shooting in aperture priority and manual; especially in concert with the green button. The dial is easy to adjust with one finger; thats how it is meant to be used. As someone who prefers aperture rings I'll say that the MZ-S is the best SLR ever when it comes to ergonomics.
I'll agree that I would less-opposed to it if I preferred using the aperture ring, but I do not. If I did, and if I didn't care about not being able to reach the AF button with my left eye to the VF, then it would be a reasonable camera for Av mode.

I'd take issue with your statement that the MZ-S is well-suited to full manual mode, but I'll readily admit that my preferred shooting method could be very uncommon. When I say full manual, here's what I mean: I look through the VF, and watch the meter in the VF display, and then depending on the scene and subject, I want to be able to change both aperture and shutter speed easily (read: with control wheels). The PZ-1 offers this.

Now, if I could turn the dial easily with one finger, then it would be getting even closer to suiting my needs (though I'd still be stuck turning the aperture ring). But there's no way I can turn that dial with one finger, and considering the angle of it, it doesn't really seemed designed to be used that way. But it's entirely possible that my sample of the camera had a mucked up control ring. Seems doubtful, since it's otherwise so clean, but formally possible.

Even if all that were true, it doesn't address the Happy Meal quality film door.
04-09-2012, 12:20 PM   #48
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QuoteOriginally posted by Todd Adamson Quote
and if I didn't care about not being able to reach the AF button with my left eye to the VF, then it would be a reasonable camera for Av mode.
Do you think being left-eye dominant could be a factor... If you were right eye dominant it wouldn't be an issue right?

I drool over MZ-S on ebay frequently... but looking at £380+ plus postage from Asia or the States on a good day... The only UK sales I see are damaged...

Gonna have to move to the US or HongKong (but get paid in UK money!!)
04-09-2012, 12:29 PM   #49
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QuoteOriginally posted by DaveHolmes Quote
Do you think being left-eye dominant could be a factor... If you were right eye dominant it wouldn't be an issue right?
Correct, Dave. If I look through the VF with my right eye, I can easily thumb the AF button. So if I were right-eye dominant, that complaint would be eliminated. There are a lot of "ifs" that would have to happen for me to be able to use the MZ-S. And I'm still calling the AF button placement a design flaw. On my other cameras which have that button, it's easily accessible with either eye to the VF.

04-09-2012, 12:41 PM   #50
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I do feel that many cameras (and definitely Pentax's AF SLR's) were built with right-eye dominant photographers in mind (not a problem for me), I think newer designs (from most manufacturers) have addressed this over the last few years though...

I just tried my MZ-7 with my left eye and couldn't hit the ML button or flick the pano switch...
04-09-2012, 12:53 PM   #51
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QuoteOriginally posted by DaveHolmes Quote
I do feel that many cameras (and definitely Pentax's AF SLR's) were built with right-eye dominant photographers in mind (not a problem for me), I think newer designs (from most manufacturers) have addressed this over the last few years though...

I just tried my MZ-7 with my left eye and couldn't hit the ML button or flick the pano switch...
The PZ-1 solves the problem brilliantly by not providing such a button at all.

Actually, I just grabbed the PZ-1 for another look. The exposure mode change button and the exposure compensation buttons are both in that position. It would make it impossible for a left-eye dominant person to use them with their eye to the VF. But if I use those buttons, it's not typically while I'm looking through the VF.
04-09-2012, 01:07 PM   #52
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Todd this entire discussion points out one of the problems of internet fora - we can't speak and hear intonations nor see expressions. Clearly an MZ-s is not an ergo design suited to you, which flies in the face of accepted wisdom here (so your observations elicit outraged comments from posters who couldn't hear you nor see you).

In a smaller way the K-01 explosion was much the same. For whatever reason the form and ergonomics of that blocky camera are suited to the way I am built, and the way I see for certain uses. Yet my circumstances are so far from the mainstream that others are quite simply dismissive of my favorable observations (not that I should really care in the end - nor should you).

I'm just going to use what works for me and let others do the same - and try not to force myself to use whatever everyone else is raving about (excpet the LX, of course).
04-09-2012, 03:46 PM   #53
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote

I'm just going to use what works for me and let others do the same - and try not to force myself to use whatever everyone else is raving about (excpet the LX, of course).
Exactly. The MZ-S had some nice things about it (build quality was pretty solid other than that taco shell material they used for the door), but for my personal use, it was horrible. That obviously doesn't mean it isn't wonderful for someone else. But I had to try, of course. If everyone raves about something, there's usually a reason, and I often find myself agreeing with the masses. Not always, though, and not in this case.

In the case of the LX, I am firmly on board with the prevailing opinion that it's awesome. And of course if anyone disagrees, they're a moron.

04-11-2012, 01:08 PM   #54
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Sorry to hear you didn't get on with the MZ-S Todd, though I'm not completely surprised. You made it clear how much you like the F100, and as far as I'm concerned the F100 is the Best Film Camera Ever Made. The only thing wrong with the F100 is that it doesn't have a Pentax K-mount

I'm not surprised you like the PZ1p either. It is built like, and handles very much like, the Nikon F90X. Amazingly, the PZ1p beat Nikon to the dual-control wheel concept, which makes the PZ1p a much better camera than it's Nikon contemporary. (Otherwise it's a draw, they share the same awesome shutter too.)

I don't know why Pentax abandoned the development stream of the dual-control-wheel system. Something put them off it for the entire MZ series, including the rumored but unreleased MZ-1. They experimented with the MZ-S and it's slanted panel and multi function wheel. I think it was the right choice for that camera as it preserves the use of the on-lens aperture ring. Many photographers lament the loss of the aperture ring in the modern world of the dual-control-wheel. But it's odd that Pentax would get to the dual-wheel first and then abandon it for an entire camera generation.

One final point about your MZ-S and it's control wheels. If they are not easy to turn with a single finger, or the edge of your thumb, then something is wrong with them. On my MZ-S the left hand wheel was easy to turn (but precise, it always clicked into place.) The right hand wheel required a thumb and forefinger and a definite effort to rotate. I had my local camera shop open up the MZ-S, and they found that Pentax had sealed the wheels with a rubber ring. The rubber had disintegrated some, and the ring was catching the wheel and dragging the whole mechanism. The shop just removed the rubber and cleaned out the track, and put the camera back together. It worked PERFECTLY after that -- I could adjust shutter speed with just a flick of the thumb while the camera was to my eye. I assume I lost alot of weather sealing, but I was happy to have the camera operate as it was intended.
04-11-2012, 01:12 PM   #55
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QuoteOriginally posted by Hertizel Quote
MZ-S, specially with grip, is a joy to hold and use... it feels just right (right size, right weight, right controls) and solid.

However, i do prefer using the Z1-p. It feels more like a dirty user camera, not a fancy display object. Bigger, faster, noisier, cheaper, and the double inbody control wheels allow it to use more modern lens, without aperture control ring, like my Tamron 70-200/2.8. I guess in the end, it all comes down to personal preference.
I feel the PZ-1P is the best SLR I've ever held, comfort and grip wise. It beats any Pentax SLR or DSLR and I've never held another body that's felt as good in the hand. I was very sad when I sold mine and switched to digital.
04-11-2012, 04:08 PM   #56
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Interesting thread.....I suppose I could ask the question as to which of these Pentax "Icons" is the best, but I won't, because they've both obviously got their good points....and their admirers.
So, the question I will ask is, can these cameras be maintained?.....are parts available, and can legends like Eric keep 'em going, no matter what?
Cheers, Pickles.
04-11-2012, 04:27 PM   #57
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QuoteOriginally posted by pickles Quote
Interesting thread.....I suppose I could ask the question as to which of these Pentax "Icons" is the best, but I won't, because they've both obviously got their good points....and their admirers.
So, the question I will ask is, can these cameras be maintained?.....are parts available, and can legends like Eric keep 'em going, no matter what?
Cheers, Pickles.
For the MZ-S and probably all the AF models I think the answer is no as replacement electronics will become impossible to source. Due to the lower numbers of MZ-S around I think it will die out sooner than the cheaper worse build AF models which sold in volumes and so have a ready supply of “parts” (bodies that can be canabalised). For the MX and earlier I think they will outlast all other Pentax cameras including current DSLRs.
04-11-2012, 04:56 PM   #58
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QuoteOriginally posted by twitch Quote
For the MX and earlier I think they will outlast all other Pentax cameras including current DSLRs.
Which to a certain extent explains the high prices they still fetch... I'm looking for another MX but trying to find one in good nick under £100 is hard work...

I'm poor and Yorkshire (read: tight as f**k) but I supose you gets whats you pays for...
04-11-2012, 07:10 PM   #59
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QuoteOriginally posted by filmamigo Quote
The only thing wrong with the F100 is that it doesn't have a Pentax K-mount
Exactly. And that's why I was searching for another film body.

QuoteOriginally posted by filmamigo Quote
Amazingly, the PZ1p beat Nikon to the dual-control wheel concept, which makes the PZ1p a much better camera than it's Nikon contemporary.
Didn't know that! I think I mentioned in this thread or some other that I might even like the Pentax positioning of the front control wheel better than Nikon's.

QuoteOriginally posted by filmamigo Quote
One final point about your MZ-S and it's control wheels. If they are not easy to turn with a single finger, or the edge of your thumb, then something is wrong with them.
I definitely wondered if that might be the case. If that wheel turned as effortlessly as the PZ-1's front wheel with a single finger, it would be a huge improvement. I'd probably still have sent it back, but I wouldn't have found the MZ-S quite so shockingly bad for my hands.
04-11-2012, 07:12 PM   #60
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QuoteOriginally posted by K-9 Quote
I feel the PZ-1P is the best SLR I've ever held, comfort and grip wise. It beats any Pentax SLR or DSLR and I've never held another body that's felt as good in the hand. I was very sad when I sold mine and switched to digital.
TBH, every time I pick up the PZ-1, it feels a little bit better, and it felt reasonably good to start with. I have a feeling I'll be buying another one of these while they're still plentiful and cheap, just as a backup.
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