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02-28-2009, 11:27 PM   #46
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
Boz's website might have something to do with it

The "Best" Pentax Cameras
That page is quite outdated. Since this page just barely mentions the MZ-S with the quote, "Many of the disadvantages of this camera have been addressed by the "new" flagship — the MZ-S." Wow, really...ya think?

Clearly the best (by most standards) film camera made by Pentax was the MZ-S. Just take a look at the reviews. Some reviewers even say it was one of the best film cameras made, compared to many other manufacturers (in its price range). In fact, the MZ-S is still so well regarded, that it still commands between $400 - $550 on eBay.

Since, I have owned several Pentax camera bodies (from the good old trusty K1000 up to the MZ-S), I can attest to all the positive features of this camera.

It is also interesting to note that my new Pentax K20D has a slower auto focus compared to my 10 year old MZ-S. Obviously Pentax got a lot right with this beautiful camera.

Just my own "2 cents".

02-28-2009, 11:35 PM   #47
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QuoteOriginally posted by pentaxmz Quote
It is also interesting to note that my new Pentax K20D has a slower auto focus compared to my 10 year old MZ-S. Obviously Pentax got a lot right with this beautiful camera.
as well, you can "see" in the vf if the subject is actually in focus w/ the larger viewfinder. i find the MZ's (5n, 6, and S) in my experience all have pretty good AF, except the lack of cross sensors requires you to hold the camera diagonal at times to hit the target.
02-28-2009, 11:49 PM   #48
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QuoteOriginally posted by k100d Quote
as well, you can "see" in the vf if the subject is actually in focus w/ the larger viewfinder.
Definitely, it is a larger/brighter viewfinder on the MZ-S but I haven't really had any problems with the K20D.

QuoteOriginally posted by k100d Quote
i find the MZ's (5n, 6, and S) in my experience all have pretty good AF, except the lack of cross sensors requires you to hold the camera diagonal at times to hit the target.
I have never encountered that problem [often] on the MZ-S. Overall, it was [and still is] good. I just find it astounding that this 10 year old technology is better than their newest 'flagship'.
03-01-2009, 07:38 AM   #49
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The nylon screw catch for the Winder MX battery compartment is a really poor design - so unlike Pentax!
On mine partially depressing the winder release wouldn't activate the meter, a common problem. Eric fixed that.

The Winder MX does help the handling a bit, but the increased weight kind of defeats the purpose of the miniature camera.
I have thought about attaching the winder without batteries, but the vertical grip just gets in the way of the body release...

Chris

03-01-2009, 07:46 AM   #50
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QuoteQuote:
On mine partially depressing the winder release wouldn't activate the meter, a common problem. Eric fixed that.
that may or may not have something to do with how old your winder is. I have two. one early, one late. the early one will activate the meter the late one will not.
03-01-2009, 07:50 AM   #51
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Seamuis, are you sure your "later model" isn't just defective? Why would Pentax eliminate that feature?

Chris
03-01-2009, 07:58 AM   #52
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QuoteOriginally posted by ChrisPlatt Quote
The nylon screw catch for the Winder MX battery compartment is a really poor design - so unlike Pentax!
On mine partially depressing the winder release wouldn't activate the meter, a common problem. Eric fixed that.

The Winder MX does help the handling a bit, but the increased weight kind of defeats the purpose of the miniature camera.
I have thought about attaching the winder without batteries, but the vertical grip just gets in the way of the body release...

Chris
I agree with you about the Winder MX battery compartment design Chris. It is a very poor design. It is difficult to open at the best of times and prone to damage. I had to have mine repaired after a minor fall. If you are buying a used MX winder be aware of this design flaw.

On the other hand we disagree about the winder and weight issues. I find the MX is just too small and light without the winder and its batteries. It is certainly too small for my not overly large hand. This is subjective of course and will vary from user to user. The battery compartment is about the only complaint I have with this otherwise nearly perfect manual film camera. The MX came towards the end of about 100 years of refinement and development of mechanical reflex SLRs. I think they got it just about right with this one.


Cheers

Tom G

Last edited by 8540tomg; 03-01-2009 at 09:56 AM. Reason: typo
03-01-2009, 08:06 AM   #53
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QuoteOriginally posted by ChrisPlatt Quote
Seamuis, are you sure your "later model" isn't just defective? Why would Pentax eliminate that feature?

Chris
how would I know its defective? how could I know know they didnt? it functions as it should and is in nearly new condition, rarely used. I have heard of plenty of people who's winders didn't activate the meter.


edit: I am referring to when the winder is 'off'. for some reason I assumed that is what you were talking about. if not then I retract my statement.

03-01-2009, 08:14 AM   #54
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QuoteOriginally posted by pentaxmz Quote
That page is quite outdated. Since this page just barely mentions the MZ-S with the quote, "Many of the disadvantages of this camera have been addressed by the "new" flagship — the MZ-S." Wow, really...ya think?

Just my own "2 cents".
Oh I certainly agree - the PDML survey was completed in 2001. I linked to it because the OP queries about MX cameras and I gave a hypothetical reason that some Pentax users might be so enamored of the MX.

I sometimes contemplate simplifying my hobby by cashing out of my entire gear list and replacing it with a K20D, MZ-S and just the FA Limiteds and DA55~300 (to shoot my son playing Lacrosse). I think it would be about an even money swap.

Then I hesitate about selling a K lens or two and my KX (for a sentimental reason - it was a gift), then another lens or two, and suddenly the money doesn't work any more.
03-01-2009, 08:31 AM   #55
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QuoteOriginally posted by séamuis Quote
how would I know its defective? how could I know know they didnt? it functions as it should and is in nearly new condition, rarely used. I have heard of plenty of people who's winders didn't activate the meter.
Well to start, mine didn't; Eric fixed it and now it does. AFAIK many don't work because (as originally stated) this is a common problem.

You might be right, but two samples is not enough to go by. Is it not possible yours was defective right from the package?

Let's research this, and avoid speculation...

Chris
03-01-2009, 08:36 AM   #56
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QuoteQuote:
edit: I am referring to when the winder is 'off'. for some reason I assumed that is what you were talking about. if not then I retract my statement.

you caught this right?
03-01-2009, 09:14 AM   #57
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Well - you can add me to the list of people who are not bowled over by the MX. Don't get me wrong, it is a NICE camera. If you are looking for a small, solid, fully mechanical camera this is one of the better options. I owned a couple of them over the years (along with the associated motor drives, etc) - the MX just didn't do it for me. I found that the controls were a bit rough for my tastes (stiff shutter speed dial, advance lever was not as smooth as other pentax models, really thin/easy to dent top and bottom plates). I much preferred the LX and KX over the MX. As long as you don't get a lemon (and there are quite a number of lemons floating around out there) the LX is pretty hard to beat as far as feel, controls, and support are concerned. I find the KX, while not as physically refined as the MX, to be my favorite Pentax full manual camera (controls are smoother than the MX, build appears to be better, more features, etc.)...but to each their own.
03-01-2009, 09:23 AM   #58
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According to a highly regarded source, Seamuis you are correct!

Originally the Winder MX shutter release could activate the meter even with winder and camera power set to OFF positions.
Reports of battery drain due to inadvertent operation (e.g. stored in a camera bag) later led Pentax to redesign release function.

Chris

Last edited by ChrisPlatt; 03-01-2009 at 01:08 PM.
03-01-2009, 10:30 AM   #59
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QuoteOriginally posted by John Poirier Quote
I'll steer this a bit toward the orginal topic...

Why the continuing popularity of the MX? It's a little jewel that continues to be capable of making good pictures. It has the essential character of a fine mechanical instrument, which means that there is pleasure in using it. I have mine in a kit with a KX, (another mechanical beauty) and several prime lenses. The MX is loaded with HP5 and used hand-held (with winder). The KX is loaded with FP4 and is used mainly on a tripod, usually with its very convenient MLU.
That's kind of how I work, MX handheld with 400-1600 speed for available light, LX (with MLU & IDM meter) is for slower colour and tripod stuff. Not always, but it seems to work this way.


QuoteOriginally posted by ChrisPlatt Quote
The nylon screw catch for the Winder MX battery compartment is a really poor design - so unlike Pentax!
On mine partially depressing the winder release wouldn't activate the meter, a common problem. Eric fixed that.

The Winder MX does help the handling a bit, but the increased weight kind of defeats the purpose of the miniature camera.
I have thought about attaching the winder without batteries, but the vertical grip just gets in the way of the body release...

Chris
My Winder doesn't activate the meter either, I have to cock the lever to the stand off position and half-depress the body shutter. I'm thinking I may have a loose connection in there from my partial disassembly to get the batteries in.

Maybe when I get that SC-21 screen from Chris, I'll drop the SA-21 into the MX and get erik to calibrate the meter and check the winder; he did a wonderful job getting my LX back up and running.

Also, my MX's top plate and prism is pristine, whereas my LX's FA-1 finder is quite dinged up and dented (jest the exterior metal).
03-01-2009, 07:35 PM   #60
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QuoteOriginally posted by BigBlueCat Quote
I have 2 ME Super's and an LX, and find the ME Super an easier camera to use most of the time. The main thing the ME Super lacks is DoF preview - I can live without mirror lockup - though I do find the interchangeable finders on the LX great (I have 2 finders).

As for the MX, I'm attracted to it on the basis that it's manual, simple, small and light, and would round out my collection. But if I see a cheap SuperA out there, I'd be seriously tempted since it's an ME Super with DoF and program mode, grip, etc. as well as having full manual operation. In my mind (and without actually using one), the SuperA just about has everything I would need 99% of the time.
SuperA/SuperProgram is indeed the most feature-packed manual camera by Pentax. You can even use a DA lens (assume it covers FF image circle) on it w/o any problem Some day I might just sell off all the other film cameras, only keep a SuperProgram, when I've lost interest in shooting film ...
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