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04-16-2013, 12:51 PM   #1
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ME Super and Vivitar lens compatibility


A few months ago I got myself a Pentax ME Super. It came with a Ricoh Rikenon 135mm lens. A lens to big for me.
I went online and bought a 1991 new vivitar 28-70mm 1:3.4-4.8 macro focusing zoom lens (PK mount???).

When using this lens on a f other than f/3.4, the camera freezes mid shot, that is, the mirror gets stuck "in a 50%" position and only moves the rest of the shot if I turn the f ring to 3.4.

Are there any known issues with the compatibility between this lens and the Pentax ME Super?

The Vivitar seems to have 10 f positions (clicks) between 3.4 and 22, while my 135mm lens only have 7. Does the camera only recognizes 6 positions?

What's a good zoom lens to use with the Pentax me super?

I am fairly new to this SLR world. Any help will be appreciated.

04-16-2013, 02:41 PM   #2
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Is this the lens you have?
Vivitar 28-70mm 1:3.5-4.8 MC Macro Focusing Zoom Lens Reviews - Vivitar Lenses - Pentax Lens Review Database

If so, it should be compatible. The ME super doesn't really "read" the aperture ring, it just senses a tab that tells it how far it's been stopped down.

It sounds to me like something might be getting jammed...

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04-16-2013, 03:04 PM   #3
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Not quite. The lens looks a little bit more modern. I attached a photo of it.

When I use the 135mm lens all works well. Only with the vivitar has issues.
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04-16-2013, 03:28 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by ozzbaldo Quote
Not quite. The lens looks a little bit more modern. I attached a photo of it.
Shouldn't make any difference. Your ME Super was designed to accommodate a wide range of minimum aperture settings. If the lens has an aperture ring, it supports the non-crippled mount on your ME Super. In addition, the aperture setting coupling is not connected to the shutter mechanism in any way, shape, or form.

All that being said, there may still be a problem with your Viv. I would suspect an issue with the aperture actuator mechanism inside the lens. With the lens off the camera, flick the aperture actuator lever to check that it moves without hesitation and actually stops the lens down smoothly and snappily. Do this at all aperture settings. My guess is that the lever jams if the ring is at any position other than wide open. Jammed lever = interrupted shutter cycle.

If there is a problem, you should bring it to the attention of the seller and suggest a full refund.


P.S. Until you get this resolved, I would suggest NOT mounting the Viv to your camera.

04-17-2013, 07:53 AM   #5
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Actually I think there might be an answer, though I'm not sure. Vivitar changed the design of their K-mounts. I don't know the dates, but I've attached a photo of two Vivitar zooms. On the left is my Vivitar 75-205mm zoom, no Auto aperture, bought in 1977 for my K1000. Look at the way the flange wraps half-way around the mount. On the right is a Vivitar Series 1 70-210mm 1:2.8-4.0 zoom, with the Auto Aperture setting. Look at the flange on it, very tiny.

I don't know which your lens has, but that wider flange on the older lens can, I have heard, interfere with the aperture mechanism on some of the later SLRs. It won't mount at all on DSLRs.

Yours being, as you say, a 1991 lens, I imagine you have the narrow flange and it's not an issue. But it's worth checking as obviously Vivitar had at least two different ways they made the K mount.

It might be that if your camera "expects" auto-aperture, the moving aperture of the lens catches on something? If you are going manual apertuire, maybe the camera needs a different setting.

I'm just guessing here--hope maybe it helps.
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