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02-13-2009, 08:22 AM   #1
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Super Program + SMC-M-lens?

Hello!
I just have a quick question;
How is the backward compability with the Super Program? Are there any problems with the light metering if I use a M lens on it?

(I'm quite tempetd to buy the Super Program and the 40mm pancake, that's why I ask )

Greetings
Sebastian

02-13-2009, 08:27 AM   #2
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This combo should work great. You will not be able to use shutter-priority or full 'program' AE because the M-lenses don't have the 'A' position on the aperture ring. Manual and aperture priority should work without any problems.

Note that if this is going to be your only lens (meaning you're not planning to take advantage of Pentax-A full AE or shutter priority), you're not going to use TTL flash, and you're OK with 1/1000 rather than 1/2000 shutter, a less expensive Program plus will be just as good. If you are willing to give up the depth-of-field preview lever, an ME Super would also be a good (and smaller) substitute (and it has a 1/2000 shutter like the Super Program).
02-13-2009, 08:37 AM   #3
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I use M lenses on my Pgm Plus with no problems - the program setting simply converts to Av when an aperture ring is set to other than A. The camera meters great with M lenses, and with M42's with the adapter too. I.e. none of the problems the dSLR bodies have.

Go for it!
02-13-2009, 08:45 AM   #4
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Thanks for fast anwsers!
I will probably get some more lenses later on, but now I felt that I want a SLR that I can put in my (bigger) pocket, and since the Super program is alsmost as small as the ME and ME Super, I think I prefer that one. This because of the depth-of-field preview and 1/2000.

Again, thanks!
Sebastian

02-13-2009, 09:27 AM   #5
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You might also consider an ZX/MZ-series body; they were quite light & small. Main drawback is that the viewfinders aren't as big/bright and they're probably not as durable. The ZX-M/MZ-M has 1/2000 shutter and dof-preview and a motor drive but weighs only 320 grams and is only slightly larger. The old bodies are more charming though...

Note that the ME Super has the 1/2000 shutter and you can also get DoF preview by partially unmounting the lens. The MX is 1/1000 and manual-only but has a dof-preview lever; it also shows the aperture setting in the viewfinder. The Super Program only shows aperture in the viewfinder with 'A' lenses when you're using Shutter-priority or Program AE mode.
02-13-2009, 09:50 AM   #6
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Thanks for tip, but I really like the look of the older ones, especially the Super Program which have a "modern old-school look"
02-13-2009, 10:27 AM   #7
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Yeah, the Super Program seems to be to be the best balance between modern electronic cameras and the metal, mechanical cameras of the past. The Super Program is definitely on my "to acquire" list

The Z/PZ series is also worth looking in to, especially the higher-end models of the range. Some consider the PZ-1P to be the best (consumer) camera that Pentax ever made. They control identically to an ist D/K10D/K20d, and have absolutely no problems with M lenses, except for no program or shutter priority automation. By the way, the Z/PZ series directly preceded the MZ/ZX series.
02-13-2009, 10:34 AM   #8
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Those are pretty nice. One other thing about the ME Super is that manual metering and setting shutter speeds are less convenient than on the Super Program (you have to be looking through the finder to see your set speed, and the manual metering is kind of a vague matter of the widely-spaced 'over' and 'under' lights both going away when you're about a stop within the meter's idea.

With a lot of the lit-scale-metered cameras of the day, you develop a bit of a 'waggle' to really get your subtleties (ie, you waggle the camera around varying brightnesses to really get an idea what the meter's saying, ...actually, if you're familiar with your camera and its metering pattern, this is a great way to go, generally: with the old Canon AE-1P the scale simply lights up the aperture the meter suggests, in full-stop increments. I'm still trying to adapt the technique to the ME Super I have, here and there. With the old Canon, I don't even *read* the numbers, really, I just know the shape and placement of each stop and read by how they jump around.

(From long use, I actually prefer that to the A-1's more precise digital readout, where you kind of have to stop to *read numbers* (more like a Super Program's, actually, but the Super Program has a +/- EV readout. ) )

Anyway, that's the one real thing about ME Supers: the manual metering is kind of an afterthought, and it shows. (They are, after all, basically just an upgrade of the ME, which is aperture-priority only) What you get for your pains, though, is one of the best Pentax finders ever and extreme compactness.

02-13-2009, 03:13 PM   #9
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The Super Program was the flagship camera to take advantage of the A lenses. The M lenses etc. work fine, just not in the A setting on the lens. They are a nice size as well coming close to the MX. They are also built like a Pentax.

edit: People often over look the fact that the have ttl metering for flash operation. I actually have a ttl macro ring flash that works with mine!
02-13-2009, 04:05 PM   #10
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I think a lot of it is what you're used to. The ME/ME super/P-series/SF-series viewfinder readouts are more like the traditional matched-needled indicators where one needle/light/flashing light shows the meter-recommended speed, and the other shows the current setting. I've never loved the digital +/- in the Super Program/Program Plus--in the same way, I much prefer the LED 'analog' lightmeter in the P/PZ/MZ/ZX series, as well as in the K10D/K20D. My *ist DS2 only has the numeric +/- which I find harder to interpret at a glance.

I can only think that switching from a shutter-priority Canon to an aperture-priority Pentax would be a little awkward. I don't do myself any favors by having several Pentax bodies with varying controls--makes it harder to get really used to any of them.

I guess you are correct that the Super Program does have that really tiny top-mount LCD that indicates shutter speed--the ME Super lacks this--so from that perpsective, I guess the A-series bodies were slightly more refined.

None of this of course is meant to dissuade anyone from the Super Program, Program Plus or their Super-A/Program-A cousins because they remain some of the best manual focus bodies Pentax made.
02-14-2009, 01:28 AM   #11
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I really think the LX has the best of all worlds when in comes to meter interface. The manual mode interface both instantly informs you of the meter's guess, and instantly informs you of the current setting. You just match the two.


BTW, what is this 40mm pancake lens? I have a f/1.7 50mm and a f/2.8 24mm, and they are both about the same size. Is there a smaller Pentax lens?
02-14-2009, 05:40 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by BetterSense Quote
I really think the LX has the best of all worlds when in comes to meter interface. The manual mode interface both instantly informs you of the meter's guess, and instantly informs you of the current setting. You just match the two.


BTW, what is this 40mm pancake lens? I have a f/1.7 50mm and a f/2.8 24mm, and they are both about the same size. Is there a smaller Pentax lens?
It's this one:
M 40/2.8

Not really the sharpest you can find (due to what I heard), but it's really small.

I've just bought one, it's going to be very interesting to use it when it arrives
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