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09-13-2008, 02:05 PM   #1
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Pentax SF1

I just picked up a new old stock SF1 off of Ebay. Camera came out of the box brand new still in the plastic and the manuals still in the plastic. The camera strap hadn't even been opened.

I have been using this camera for a couple of days and it is a TANK. It has 0 dials. It does have a very informative "Centic" screen. The viewfinder is awesome. I have yet to see what kind of photo's I am going to produce with this, but for now I am using the 50mm 1.4 A on it....

Does anyone on here have experience with this 1 ton monster?

So far I like it... but it's just a little awkward. Hot shoe is on the right side and it has a pop up flash. Supposedly worlds first PTTL and Autofocus in the body....but I'm not sure...

Thanks
Jason

P.S.

I couldn't beat the fact that is was 40.00 and NEW.

09-13-2008, 03:30 PM   #2
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I still have my SF-1. Once you get used to using the slider next to the shutter release, you won't really miss the dials much. It is a tank, but also is very reliable. I keep mine for deep winter shooting. I have a cold pack for it - a 1 meter cord, replacement battery cover and 4 AA pack that goes inside my clothing. No battery troubles at -20 for me!
09-13-2008, 03:38 PM   #3
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I bought my SF-1 in 2001 and really liked it. Yes its built like a tank, but tanks last a long time.

I was put off about the placement of the flash hot shoe until i noticed red eye was pretty much gone. Its noisy etc, but it takes great photos.

Dave
09-13-2008, 08:15 PM   #4
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TTL, not P-TTL

I have an SF1, and you're right. It is built like a tank. Actually, with the built-in bulge for the battery, it feels a lot like my K10D does in my hand. It seems to weigh about the same, as well.

The SF1 uses TTL flash technology, not P-TTL. I wish that my K10D did. I'm not impressed with P-TTL. The SF1 has a flash sensor built into the mirror chamber, to measure the light reflecting off the film, to determine proper flash exposure. It does not use a pre-flash, before the mirror is up, the way the K10D does.

I really enjoy using my SF1, although, for the last year, since I got my K10D, I haven't used the SF1 very much.

09-13-2008, 09:41 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by pentkon52 Quote
I bought my SF-1 in 2001 and really liked it. Yes its built like a tank, but tanks last a long time.

I was put off about the placement of the flash hot shoe until i noticed red eye was pretty much gone. Its noisy etc, but it takes great photos.

Dave
I was very disappointed that Pentax moved the flash shoe on later models. That was a great placement - the camera was balanced in one hand despite the weight of the flash!
09-14-2008, 05:06 AM   #6
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Yes, i forgot to add that. It was/is balanced nicely that way.
No need to turn my hat all the way around either.

Dave
09-17-2009, 02:16 PM   #7
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SF1 Operation

I too just picked up a nice SF1 on eBay though not the deal mentioned here. I do have a question though. I have the manual and am still having difficulty finding the Aperture Priority mode. I do find the Shutter Priority mode though have now way yet to adjust it. However, the Priority mode becomes indicated via the arrow but nothing appears there. I can of course take the lens to manual and set my own, but I would have thought that would be referenced in the Centex window of viewfinder.

What am I missing?
09-17-2009, 05:24 PM   #8
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The SF1 works differently than other, newer Pentax bodies. There is no provision to control aperture on/through the body; if you want to control the aperture you do it on the lens using the aperture ring. You activate aperture priority by setting the lens to a numerical aperture (i.e. something other than A) and cycling through the modes till you reach aperture priority. In shutter priority using the slider switch on the grip will increment or decrement shutter speeds; it works the same in manual too.

09-17-2009, 07:37 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Stevopedia Quote
The SF1 works differently than other, newer Pentax bodies. There is no provision to control aperture on/through the body; if you want to control the aperture you do it on the lens using the aperture ring. You activate aperture priority by setting the lens to a numerical aperture (i.e. something other than A) and cycling through the modes till you reach aperture priority. In shutter priority using the slider switch on the grip will increment or decrement shutter speeds; it works the same in manual too.
That is what I really like about the older bodies. Both the SF-1 and the MZ-S work the same. If you want aperture priority, change the aperture. If you want shutter priority, set the lens to A and set your shutter speed. If you want program, set them both to auto. Logical, intuitive and well thought out.
09-18-2009, 10:46 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Canada_Rockies Quote
That is what I really like about the older bodies. Both the SF-1 and the MZ-S work the same. If you want aperture priority, change the aperture. If you want shutter priority, set the lens to A and set your shutter speed. If you want program, set them both to auto. Logical, intuitive and well thought out.
I completely agree with you. I think it was a mistake for the camera manufacturers to remove aperture rings from the newest lenses, and for Pentax to remove the aperture sensor on the newer bodies. I'm still hoping that Pentax will eventually wise up and de-cripple the K mount, but I'm not holding my breath.

In the meantime, I'll just keep enjoying these older bodies!
11-02-2009, 02:36 AM   #11
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Based on the FANTASTIC REVIEWS!!!

I'm going to have to try and get one of these. I've been wanting to shoot film again, and have a couple of old Pentax lenses. I made the mistake of letting my uncle "borrow" my ME, which in just a few months, he thoroughly TRASHED!! I was so pissed, I didn't bother to take it back. So this sounds like a good replacement all these years later.

Thanks guys!
Xavian-Anderson Macpherson
ShingoshiDao
11-02-2009, 03:24 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by Canada_Rockies Quote
That is what I really like about the older bodies. Both the SF-1 and the MZ-S work the same. If you want aperture priority, change the aperture. If you want shutter priority, set the lens to A and set your shutter speed. If you want program, set them both to auto. Logical, intuitive and well thought out.
The only thing I didn't like with the SF1 (and SF1n) was that there was no aperture readout in the viewfinder. That was a bit disappointing especially as its predecessor, the Super-A (aka Super Program) did have.
11-02-2009, 08:38 PM   #13
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Little Tank

I have two SF1n's, which are almost identical to yours, and they are great cameras.

These cameras are very well balanced with almost any lens you decide to use. The controls are different but when you get used to it you will find that they are extremely easy to use.

Enjoy your new purchase. Spend some time with it and I think you'll like it.
11-03-2009, 10:15 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by Pioneer Quote
I have two SF1n's, which are almost identical to yours, and they are great cameras.

These cameras are very well balanced with almost any lens you decide to use. The controls are different but when you get used to it you will find that they are extremely easy to use.

Enjoy your new purchase. Spend some time with it and I think you'll like it.
Speaking of balance, the SF-1 has the hot shoe above the grip. That makes the camera easily usable with only the right hand with a heavy shoe mount flash on it, such as the AF 500 FTZ I used to own. I wish they had left it over there rather than moving it on top of the prism like everyone else's. It moved the top LCD to the centre of the camera as well.
11-03-2009, 10:30 AM   #15
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There were good ergonomic and technical reasons for it being on the right. Unfortunately, aesthetic considerations normally best the other two.
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