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06-25-2013, 08:56 AM   #1
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Which SLR? (SV replacement)

Dear all,

I'm writing because I'd like to ask for your advice. Here's the situation I'm in: I happily took photos with a Pentax SV, but then got worried -- needlessly, I'm sure -- about radiation from its lenses. Well, it's too late now; I sold the SV and a family member had a K1000 left over, so I thought I'd use that instead. I'm not very happy with the K1000, though... Here are my issues:
  • The SV's viewfinder was larger, so the K1000's feels cramped. What's more, it was easier to focus the SV as the focusing grid was much larger, so I could even do it without my glasses quite easily.
  • The SV's shutter felt much more satisfying. I read the K1000 uses a silk shutter, perhaps this is the problem -- I think I'd rather have something less smooth!
In essence, the SV was much more pleasant to use.

What I'd really like, I think, is a Pentax SV with a K mount! I have had a look around, and the Pentax MX has caught my eye due to its massive viewfinder. I'm wondering, though: what is its shutter like? Is it like the K1000's, or more like the SV's? And which lens would be on par with or better than my old Super-Takumar 55/1.7?

Thank you very much for your help!

06-25-2013, 09:39 AM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by noctilux Quote
Dear all,

I'm writing because I'd like to ask for your advice. Here's the situation I'm in: I happily took photos with a Pentax SV, but then got worried -- needlessly, I'm sure -- about radiation from its lenses. Well, it's too late now; I sold the SV and a family member had a K1000 left over, so I thought I'd use that instead. I'm not very happy with the K1000, though... Here are my issues:
  • The SV's viewfinder was larger, so the K1000's feels cramped. What's more, it was easier to focus the SV as the focusing grid was much larger, so I could even do it without my glasses quite easily.
  • The SV's shutter felt much more satisfying. I read the K1000 uses a silk shutter, perhaps this is the problem -- I think I'd rather have something less smooth!
In essence, the SV was much more pleasant to use.

What I'd really like, I think, is a Pentax SV with a K mount! I have had a look around, and the Pentax MX has caught my eye due to its massive viewfinder. I'm wondering, though: what is its shutter like? Is it like the K1000's, or more like the SV's? And which lens would be on par with or better than my old Super-Takumar 55/1.7?

Thank you very much for your help!
The MX is my very favorite camera of all time. I have, over the years, owned seven of them. I still own two, and I hope to be buried with one of them when that time comes.

You mentioned the shutter being silk, but nearly all Pentax SLRs of the 1960s through the early 1980s used shutters made of rubberized silk. Still, I know what you mean as far as the K1000 goes. I only used a K1000 once or twice back in the late 1970s. It felt cheap to me (and it was cheap, of course), and the shutter sounded tinny. The MX shutter sounds much closer to my Spotmatic, if that helps.

I can not say enough good things about the MX, so I won't bore you further with its accolades. But I would encourage you to send it to Eric Hendrickson for a CLA if you get the MX (or any other Pentax SLR of that era, for that matter). It will likely need fresh light seals and a mirror bumper.

Did I mention that I really like the MX, by the way?
06-25-2013, 10:38 AM   #3
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I have a SV and two Spotmatics. I own a KX and also have experience with a variety of K-mount Pentax bodies. None, with the exception of the MX, is as smooth in operation or sound as the earlier M42 cameras. Why this is, I haven't a clue. I have never handled a LX, so that might be another option. All that being said, I don't know of a K-mount body from any maker that has the same dynamic as the SV. I guess that might explain its status as a cult classic.


Steve

Last edited by stevebrot; 06-25-2013 at 10:48 AM.
06-25-2013, 10:41 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by noctilux Quote
And which lens would be on par with or better than my old Super-Takumar 55/1.7?
Pentax-K 55/1.8 would be the most comparable, though I would recommend the Pentax-M 50/1.7 for use on an MX.

Steve

06-25-2013, 12:26 PM   #5
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I back the MX suggestion. Although I love my LX (and it is the last film camera I'd get rid of) it is a very different beast to the SV. It also has a louder, more kerchinnngggg sounding shutter. Why not add your name to the travelling k-mount list and try an MX out?

K.
06-25-2013, 12:58 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by womble Quote
I back the MX suggestion. Although I love my LX (and it is the last film camera I'd get rid of) it is a very different beast to the SV. It also has a louder, more kerchinnngggg sounding shutter. Why not add your name to the travelling k-mount list and try an MX out?

K.
OP is in the UK. Perhaps you two could meet up?


Steve
06-25-2013, 01:10 PM   #7
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Another endorsement for the MX. Especially for the viewfinder. I have also used LX since it was new, but in general prefer the MX for it's simple meter. (Yes, the LX shutter is clanky due to the titanium foil curtains.)
06-26-2013, 05:04 AM   #8
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Thanks a lot everyone -- just another reminder why I love this forum so much!

That all sounds good, so I'll be giving the MX a go. From a quick look on ebay, it looks like it's actually pretty cheap in the UK, which is an added bonus. Hopefully, I'll have one soon!

06-26-2013, 09:58 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by noctilux Quote
From a quick look on ebay, it looks like it's actually pretty cheap in the UK,
Well, that is nice. Here in my part of the world, an MX (in a shop) in good condition is over $200 USD!!!


Steve
06-26-2013, 11:23 AM   #10
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The MX is also my favorite film SLR. It won't be the same as the SV, but it definitely has its merits.
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