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09-23-2013, 05:33 PM   #16
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Steve, I liked you post #12 and copied to my little library here.
The KR-10 ( Super, thanks borisC ) here, has the lcd way over to right, shrouded by a black border
and I was never happy to use it because of the meter reading difficulty even when my eyes were better 25 years ago.
The KR-5 Super2 has been my favorite.

The XR-2 is the deluxe of the 3 Ricohs here. I checked its mirror buffer which seems OK. That camera has the loudest shutter
of all in my collection. Like a Jail gate closing.

The nice-est shutter sound of all the slr cameras here is the Pentax MX with its silk curtain, especially at long exp.

The Canon A-1 here comes second for shutter etiquette. it sounds like it is in a James Bond movie.
But don't get me going on the design of that A-1 with its 100 page manual, needed in the pocket to work out how to use its "50 buttons and knobs".
Looks like it was designed by politicians.

I am happy to have these old cameras all still working ...and we can still talk about them ad infinitum... better, they are still in use !!

09-23-2013, 05:54 PM   #17
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I have opted for MX and MZ-S--as well as a Spotmatic II and a 5n. We also have an original to my wife ME Super that is still operational, but will be sent to Eric soon. The K series are great, and the 5n will go for the gear upgrade, it is a nice body. I keep lenses I can use for film and digital. I love the smaller bodies.
09-24-2013, 09:34 AM   #18
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QuoteOriginally posted by wombat2go Quote
That camera has the loudest shutter
of all in my collection. Like a Jail gate closing.
Yep, very similar to the Nikon FM. Sort of like a very precise metallic Ka-thlump.

I think I mentioned that the XR-1, -1s, -2, -2s bodies have almost identical dimensions and control placement as the K series Pentax bodies. Here is the comparison shot:





Steve
09-24-2013, 12:30 PM   #19
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Steve, how does the viewfinder compare between those two?

09-24-2013, 12:39 PM   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by ChristianRock Quote
So, after reading some horror stories on the ZX-M I told my friend I think I'm not interested in it... I was going to pay shipping for it, but it might still be a waste of money and expensive batteries if the shutter or the rewind mechanism breaks while I'm taking pictures, and it seems like it's a very common thing to happen.

The Super Program looks interesting to me because I would be able to use modern primes like the DA 35mm f2.4 "plastic fantastic" when I get it. That was another reason I kept the now broken A3000, and sold my K1000 just weeks ago...

Or, I might just get another K1000. My friend who bought mine is taking wonderful pictures with it... and then there's a minolta system that I'm looking into as well...
I don't have the link right now, but there are instructions on how to replace the plastic gear in the ZX/MZ bodies with a metal one. Or Eric could do it for a reasonable price. If you want to try the ZX-M for just the price of shipping, that may not be a bad option. After replacing the gear, you should have a very reliable camera for years to come. As many will agree here, more than one camera isn't a bad idea. I primarily use my K2 DMD for B&W film, always loaded, while I use other cameras for different types of film.

The Super Program is great for DA lenses. I use my Super Program and *ist film bodies with the DA 40 XS for a very compact, pocketable setup.

Getting another K1000 isn't a bad idea. Many are overpriced online. If you really want another I could find one for you in my local market and ship it your way. There are several K1000s that go up for sale locally for anywhere between $20-50 and are fully functional. I've owned every K- film body and the K1000 and K2 DMD are by far my most-used cameras in the K-series. My first SLR was a used K1000 given to me when I was around 12 years old. I still use that camera today, more than 20 years later and it works perfectly. My all-time favorite film body, and the one used most is my MX. It's a beautiful little camera.

I've also owned the LX, and while they are incredible cameras, they are a little more maintenance than others. If you want a reliable, low-maintenance camera, I'd agree with you to skip this one.
09-24-2013, 01:20 PM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by ChristianRock Quote
Steve, how does the viewfinder compare between those two?
The XR-2s has a brighter viewfinder and has both microprism and split-image. The KX has microprism center or split-image, but never both. Despite being a little dimmer, the KX finder stands out in terms of showing a realistic DOF and focus accuracy. The center groundglass donut is superb and the Fresnel field is much better than average. Both viewfinders are full information showing both aperture and shutter speed settings.


Steve
09-24-2013, 01:50 PM   #22
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Bounced to the end just to add my personal experiences or "vote" since nobody has universal enough experience to truly answer your question.

Though you already mentioned it, I have an early brown bodied K1000 SE that I got for nostalgic purposes, if you don't need the 2000 shutter speed these are a joy once correctly serviced and truly help you get in touch with the simple artistic side of photography with their bare bones design. The light sensor failing with age could be an issue and the clockwork eventually needs sorting by this point. But if they work they usually stay that way.

My weapon of choice is still the Super Program though. They will occasionally break but can be had dirt cheap in good shape off ebay. Any Super Program at this point needs to go in for a checkup mostly to take care of cleaning the fiddly piss poor contacts in both the shutter button half press and the little button on the side that turns the LCD light on (also acts like shutter half press). Once those are sorted the incredible list of capabilities of this camera combined with its reliability and tiny and lightweight but extremely easy to hold design (unlike K1000) make them an absolute joy. The viewfinder is like a freaking bay window on a sunny day compared to anything else and absolutely ruined me for APSC cameras. A huge advantage for me of this model is the 2000 shutter speed which apparently even the LX lacks as I recall. I use that a ton since I like to stick with high quality 400 speed black and white as my primary film and a sunny day is a pain in the butt without it. I also have learned to love the 2 buttons rather than a dial for shutter speed since I can operate it while still looking through the viewfinder with the same hand that is holding the camera (thanks to the grip on the body) while the other hand fiddles with the lens adjustments. I do not consider needing batteries to be a problem with this as it has a built in flashing warning long before it quits and the tiny batteries it takes fit in anything and are literally available in every town I have found at gas stations or auto parts stores even.
EDIT: One negative to the S.P. when in full manual it only reads in full stops for how far over or under you are for exposure, more of an irritation than anything since usually half a stop isn't that big a deal, though it displays its use of even 1/3 stops quite happily in P mode so I don't see why they couldn't carry that same sensitivity over to M mode.

Last edited by PPPPPP42; 09-24-2013 at 02:00 PM.
09-25-2013, 05:35 PM   #23
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QuoteOriginally posted by PPPPPP42 Quote
A huge advantage for me of this model is the 2000 shutter speed which apparently even the LX lacks as I recall.
The LX has 1/2000th as the fastest shutter speed, my vote though goes for the K1000 for price/reliability. From my experience the electronic bodies are prone to failure 30+yrs down the line and in reasonable light I prefer the needle to the MX's LEDs.

John.

09-26-2013, 08:16 AM   #24
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A Super ME appeared on Craigslist... it seems to rate highly with its users, so the reliability can't be too bad, I think. If I can get a good deal for it I might just go ahead and get it...
10-02-2013, 10:50 AM   #25
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As an update.... my friend is sending me the ZX-M sans lens (to make shipping as cheap as possible... and I don't need a 50 F2). I decided not to go with the ME Super (which is still on Craigslist) because the ZX-M is newer, basically, and basically a gift.

In the meantime I bought a Minolta XG-M with 2 MD Rokkor-X 50mm lenses (including an F1.4, yay, and a F1.7) and a Focal 28mm 2.8 and a Sigma 75-250 f4-5, for cheap on Craigslist. It also came with a neat 52mm Sigma Achromatic Lens that I can use on that Sigma, and also on Pentax lenses like my A 135mm 2.8. It works well but I haven't done an evaluation on image quality yet.
The Minolta was cheap because it doesn't come with batteries. I'm still waiting on them to see if the camera works. It's in absolute top notch shape though - just a beautifully kept and great handling camera. From my reading, if the foam is good (it's still ok) the only thing that can go wrong is some capacitors that can dry up, but someone on the Auction site sells a kit for 5 dollars that has the capacitors to change, and instructions on doing so.
The camera even came with some slide film expired in 1991...
10-02-2013, 12:05 PM   #26
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QuoteOriginally posted by ChristianRock Quote
I bought a Minolta XG-M
Great camera.


Steve
10-02-2013, 12:42 PM   #27
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Thank you Steve

The "Leica-like" quality of the Rokkor lenses was a draw to me. I can't wait to compare it to the SMC Pentax A lenses and my Ricoh lenses that I will be using with the Pentax camera
10-02-2013, 03:11 PM   #28
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If it's reliability you're looking for then you've made some interesting choices.
Like the Pentax ZX cameras the later Minolta XG series models use problematic plastic gears in the film transport.

BTW in what way are Minolta lenses "Leica-like"?

Chris

Last edited by ChrisPlatt; 10-17-2013 at 02:40 PM.
10-02-2013, 06:56 PM   #29
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QuoteOriginally posted by ChristianRock Quote
Thank you Steve

The "Leica-like" quality of the Rokkor lenses was a draw to me. I can't wait to compare it to the SMC Pentax A lenses and my Ricoh lenses that I will be using with the Pentax camera
I believe the proper phrase is "Leica glow" which is the unquantifiable characteristic that is used to overpay for the brand . . .

Although Minolta and Leica did collaborate on a few camera models such as the Minolta XE-7/Lecia R3 and the Minolta XD-11/Leica R6 and possibly others.
10-03-2013, 09:00 AM   #30
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QuoteOriginally posted by ChrisPlatt Quote
If it's reliability you're looking for then you've made some interesting choices.
Like the Pentax ZX cameras the the later Minolta XG series models use problematic plastic gears in the film transport.

BTW in what way are Minolta lenses "Leica-like"?

Chris
Well as far as I know the Minolta plastic gears don't have a history of breaking down. The main thing is capacitors drying up, but there's a kit sold on the auction site for 5 bucks, as I said, that shouldn't be too hard for me to use, and I plan on replacing the capacitors in the near future even if the camera works fine.
But the camera with 4 lenses including the 50mm 1.4 was cheaper than buying a 50mm 1.4 by itself, so I figured I couldn't go wrong.
The Pentax does, but I thought since it's a much newer camera I'd get a few years out of it. Plus the price is right (free). How can I turn it down?

The Leica-like rendering has to do with the overal image quality, reasonably sharp but also pleasing rendering, nice bokeh. I've researched a lot of images taken by these lenses on flickr and a lot of comments always go back to the Leica-like type images that are taken (usually on Sony NEX or Canon EOS cameras). On the other end of the spectrum - or so the online world says - is Nikon lenses where sharpness is king, and color, rendering and bokeh are not considered nearly as important. Pentax is famous for its strong colors, a characteristic of the SMC rendering, but also the dreamy bokehs on the primes, and nice sharp images, but less consistency from one type of lens to another than the other major brands. Canon FD are good lenses but are perceived by some as being a bit "cold" - though my friend's 50mm 1.8 begs to differ.
Anyway. That's just the perception.

I'm also looking at ZX-5/ZX-5n as their price seems to be very nice and they should be more reliable than the ZX-5n, I think?
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