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04-13-2012, 01:29 AM   #1
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K2 Focus Screen

Hello, I am sending off my pristine Asahi Pentax K2 camera to be completely rebuilt by Erick Henderson.

Right now the focus screen in it isn't the split one. Should I have him change it to the split focus screen? Isn't that most preferable screen?

04-13-2012, 01:53 AM   #2
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I have a split focus screen in my non working ME Super. Would this work in the K2? I really like this focus screen much better than the one that comes with the K2.
04-13-2012, 08:01 AM   #3
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The screen in the ME will be a different size. Check with Eric, as I think you can only swap K2 screens with a K2DMD.
I think Eric said the screens in a KX and KM are the same but different from the K2m

Phil
04-13-2012, 09:18 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by gofour3 Quote
The screen in the ME will be a different size. Check with Eric, as I think you can only swap K2 screens with a K2DMD.
I think Eric said the screens in a KX and KM are the same but different from the K2m

Phil
The split screen is the reason I sold my K2 and found a K2DMD. Lately even that won't let my ageing eyes do the VF thing. I fear all my film gear is lining up to head out the door.

04-13-2012, 09:24 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by gofour3 Quote
The screen in the ME will be a different size. Check with Eric, as I think you can only swap K2 screens with a K2DMD.
I think Eric said the screens in a KX and KM are the same but different from the K2m

Phil
Eric can change the K2 screen if he has the right ones in stock. The K2 came with 2 different screens. The microprism and the other a split screen. I have a K2 with each. My black one has the microprism and a K28/2 serving as a body cap. My silver k2 has the split screen.

The catalog number for the silver K2 with microprism was 03000 and split screen 03020. The black K2 with microprism was 0310 and split screen was 03030. It really depends on what one plans to do and which lens as to which is better. As far as I know, the only manual focus bodies with user interchangeable screens were the MX and LX.
04-13-2012, 11:26 AM   #6
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The K Series apparently had three other special order focusing screens available. Iíve never seen one, as they are not user replaceable Iím not sure how many would have been ordered.

See this old thread for a picture:

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-film-slr-discussion/93218-changing...ng-screen.html

Phil.
04-13-2012, 06:18 PM   #7
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I love the split screens but you require a straight object close enough to be clear to make it really work, its kinda useless if all you've got is mush in front of you. It helps if all your lenses are the kind where you can zoom in, focus, and then zoom out without effecting the focus, I forget the term for it, but all mine seem to be.

I'm almost read to investigate if anyone makes aftermarket screens actually. I got a katzeye for my K20D with no options at all (no optibrite ect) and it absolutely blows away in every way the split screen with microprism collar screen in my K1000 SE. I wonder if they would do one for it custom, though that rather defeats the purpose of hunting down an SE in the first place and the stock one is at least useable (have to zoom to focus though).
04-13-2012, 06:33 PM   #8
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I prefer the split screen for quick and accurate focusing until I have to use slow lenses or bellows.

04-14-2012, 06:46 AM   #9
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For what it's worth, I actually prefer the use of a microprism screen. Either one should be just fine regarding accuracy. It's up to you which one you really want.
04-14-2012, 09:03 AM   #10
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I feel I should expand on my earlier post, I am no expert so this is just my opinion and observations.
I guess something else to remember is we are comparing grapefruits to oranges here, I now have 3 different screens with both split center and micro-prism collar and all 3 behave completely differently, so you almost have to experience what you are going to get ahead of time to see if it will do any good. The best are the ones with a VERY narrow focus range, things "pop" as they say, into focus only over a tiny range so you can see exactly where the focus point is unlike many screens that have the same features, but the focus range is too wide so it sorta fades in and out of focus on both the split and the collar part which is extremely difficult to use even if you have good eyes, especially on objects that are far but not yet at infinity focus. I would always prefer both split and micro-prism because they both have their uses and with both, well, you have both, so you don't have to choose, just scoot your focal point over to the collar area and double check.

Here are mine in more detail:

K20D with katzeye (no optibrite or other options) - pops into focus over such a tiny range that I can accurately use my A50 1.4 wide open with no issues, the split center splits the image almost instantly if even slightly off and the micro-prisms clearly get chunky when not in the right focus and turn almost totally invisible when correctly focused. Even without optibrite this is my brightest screen by far but doesn't effect the light meter in the slightest. Stock screen was crap for anything but a view finder, they shouldn't have bothered releasing it with those.

Pentax Super Program with stock screen - good split prism, works well at all ranges, micro-prism collar is a bit fiddly, its super chunky to the point that you have to get used to what it looks like even focused because it never really loses the checker pattern and turns invisible like the katzeye does even when focus is spot on. Noticeably darker than katzeye but still fine uness its super dark.

Pentax K1000 SE with stock screen - worst screen of the three, the ground glass is dark enough that it makes the image look like I'm using the depth of field preview (which this doesn't have) at least stopped down a few stops. The micro-prism collar looks like a ring of dirt and is near worthless in most situations and the split prism doesn't split unless you are really close, zoomed in, or WAY off the focus point. With my A35-105 F3.5 what looks perfect with the split prism at 35mm turns out to be totally screwed up if I zoom to 105mm (which doesn't change focus with this type of lens) so I have to zoom in, focus and zoom out (original lens manual actually recommends this), the micro-prism collar works much better this way too. Overall this screen mushes into and out of focus, no narrow pop into focus, I'm not sure I could take good portraits with a very narrow depth of field lens with this, haven't fully tested it but there are some screens that just can't show you a narrow enough depth of field for that.

Last edited by PPPPPP42; 04-14-2012 at 09:11 AM.
04-14-2012, 01:37 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by kcobain1992 Quote
For what it's worth, I actually prefer the use of a microprism screen.
Same here. I find the often half blacked-out split image really annoying.
OTOH a microprism is not real easy to use with WA lenses below 35mm.

On my K2 I had Eric replace the split image screen with a microprism.
My K2DMD body came with the more modern type combination screen.

Chris
04-14-2012, 02:05 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by ChrisPlatt Quote
Same here. I find the often half blacked-out split image really annoying.
OTOH a microprism is not real easy to use with WA lenses below 35mm.

On my K2 I had Eric replace the split image screen with a microprism.
My K2DMD body came with the more modern type combination screen.

Chris
That is why I prefer to use my K28/2 and A 50/1.2 on the black k2 with microprism.
04-14-2012, 03:57 PM   #13
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I've found my K2 with stock microprism screen to be one of my favorites to use. I've found that the image "pops" into focus over the entire frame more than many of my other cameras.
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