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09-08-2006, 11:27 AM   #1
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LX vs MZ-S

OK I will start! I have both a LX and a MZ-S and like both cameras, but I still think the LX is the best film camera Pentax ever made.

I really like the fact that the LX works even without batteries with 80% of the shutter speeds still functional and only the meter doesn't work.

Any thoughts from anyone else?

Tom

09-08-2006, 05:14 PM   #2
Monza76
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I don't think you will get any argument there Tom. The MZ-S is an excellent camera, definitely the best AF film model Pentax has built but the LX was the last truly professional Pentax. Not just the best Pentax, possibly one of the ten best 35mm SLRs ever.
Ira
09-08-2006, 05:45 PM   #3
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The LX is a beautifully finished, mostly mechanical camera. It is a joy to handle but it has it's drawbacks in practical use:
1) The absence of an exposure lock, and
2) you can't operate the EV compensation with one hand due to the ill-conceived lock button. Had it had the ME's EV compensation dial without lock life with the LX would be good.

You really need an easy to use EV compensation due to the lack of exposure lock.

Forget manual exposure with the LX. It's imprecise because the meter can only show full stops.

I just got an MX and that's could very well be the camera I'd grab first, if not my trusty K1000. They both show metering in +/- half stops.
09-08-2006, 10:32 PM   #4
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LX

The LX is much better constructed than the MX, it is weather sealed and has interchangeable focusing screens and interchangeable finders. It has two exposure modes compared to the one of the MX, aperture-priority AE and metered manual.

It can meter down to ?6.5 EV which will give you 2 minutes metered by the camera, which the MX will not do. It has OTF (Off the film) metering, so any change in lighting during a long exposure will be factored into the exposure.

The electronic metering goes from 2 minutes to 1/2000 of a second and the mechanical speeds go from 1/75 to 1/2000 of a second. It has TTL flash, mirror lock up and multiple exposure built in.

The MX is a nice camera but it is not a LX.

Tom

09-10-2006, 10:51 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by ennacac Quote
OK I will start! I have both a LX and a MZ-S and like both cameras, but I still think the LX is the best film camera Pentax ever made.

I really like the fact that the LX works even without batteries with 80% of the shutter speeds still functional and only the meter doesn't work.

Any thoughts from anyone else?

Tom
I have neither, but I've read that point made before about the LX. I have a ZX-M, which is the only manual exposure Pentax camera sold by B&HPhotovideo when I looked. But I have no idea how it would compare with the LX or the MZ-S. The ZX does have batteries, but they seem to last a long time. Which is a good thing, because they're rather expensive as batteries go.
09-17-2006, 03:52 PM   #6
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Mz-s

I have both and enjoy using them. I do find the MZ-S more consistent and easier to use too. OK it lacks the low-light long exposures and interchangeable viewfinders, but I rarely use those and it more than makes up for that with spot-metering, exposure modes, and flash options. The OTF metering is a nice idea, but I find it a bit inconsistent, possibly because the reflectivity of film stock has changed since the camera was launched.

So I vote for the MZ-S

Nick
10-16-2006, 12:04 PM   #7
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Actually, the LX's exposure compensation can be adjusted one handed, you can dial in more exposure by dialing in at least one stop of underexposure (3 clicks clockwise) then dialing it back the other way, which will bypass the lock.

The LX is the one true Professional 35mm body that Pentax ever made. It's got its quirks (No AE lock most especially, 1 stop resolution on the meter readout, low flash sync) but as a system, no other Pentax body comes close.

The MZ-S is a very competent amateur body, but it's too compromised to be a semi-pro or pro body (only 2.5 fps, poor flash sync, single-wheel interface). Pentax should have given the option of a dual-wheel interface, like on the PZ-1p. It's interesting that Pentax fixed pretty much all the problems with the PZ-1p in the MZ-S (the grip setup, no AA batteries, AF performance, flash system capability) but removed several things the PZ-1p got right (1/250th flash sync, 4fps, dual-wheel interface with support for using the aperture ring).
12-28-2006, 04:31 PM   #8
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I would agree with much of what has been said here but to me it is not a question of which is better. They complement each other very well. Most of my MF work is done with the LX, my AF work with the MZ-S and digital with the *istD (soon the be suplemented with the K10D).

Kim

01-13-2007, 01:21 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by ennacac Quote
OK I will start! I have both a LX and a MZ-S and like both cameras, but I still think the LX is the best film camera Pentax ever made.

I really like the fact that the LX works even without batteries with 80% of the shutter speeds still functional and only the meter doesn't work.

Any thoughts from anyone else?

Tom

I think the PZ-1P was the best AF camera they ever made. the LX can certainly be the best non AF but the PZ-1P is a great camera that is super quick to use, and one of the most functional cameras I've ever used.

Other then the single point AF and lack of p-ttl/wireless flash the PZ-1P is IMO superior to the MZ-S, and was in it's prime as good as any other brands sub $1500 offerings.
04-09-2009, 08:31 AM   #10
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I wish our current DSLRs could go for 2 minutes metering, for long exposure shots.

QuoteOriginally posted by Mountain Vision Quote
I think the PZ-1P was the best AF camera they ever made. the LX can certainly be the best non AF but the PZ-1P is a great camera that is super quick to use, and one of the most functional cameras I've ever used.

Other then the single point AF and lack of p-ttl/wireless flash the PZ-1P is IMO superior to the MZ-S, and was in it's prime as good as any other brands sub $1500 offerings.
I agree, I bought the Z-1P as the MZ-S came out, since I knew that would be the end of the PZ series; and it didn't look like they would come out with a cam to match the Z-1P.

The MZ-S is a great looking cam, and I'm considering added it to the collection at some point.
04-09-2009, 09:26 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by shades Quote
You really need an easy to use EV compensation due to the lack of exposure lock.

Forget manual exposure with the LX. It's imprecise because the meter can only show full stops.

I just got an MX and that's could very well be the camera I'd grab first, if not my trusty K1000. They both show metering in +/- half stops.
Well, you can always add or subtract a half-stop on the aperture ring, even if the display doesn't show it. The MX is limited to a +1 to -1 range, which makes metering high contrast scenes a PITA, at least with the LX you can see roughly where the extremes fall on the display (as much as center-weighted can provide). My MX also has a stiff shutter speed dial, which is a little annoying.

QuoteOriginally posted by ennacac Quote
The LX is much better constructed than the MX, it is weather sealed and has interchangeable focusing screens and interchangeable finders. It has two exposure modes compared to the one of the MX, aperture-priority AE and metered manual.

It can meter down to ?6.5 EV which will give you 2 minutes metered by the camera, which the MX will not do. It has OTF (Off the film) metering, so any change in lighting during a long exposure will be factored into the exposure.

The electronic metering goes from 2 minutes to 1/2000 of a second and the mechanical speeds go from 1/75 to 1/2000 of a second. It has TTL flash, mirror lock up and multiple exposure built in.

The MX is a nice camera but it is not a LX.

Tom
LX will go much longer than 2 minutes, even if that's what the literature states. People report using it accurately into the 12-16 minute range (of course each stop of difference starts to make a big difference in time.

I've mentioned before, I really appreciate the MX's cloth shutter, it's smoother and quieter (or at least lower in pitch) than the LX's. Also, I wish I had the lower profile FA-2 finder for my LX, the FA-1 looks almost too big with the M series primes I use.

Shortcomings along with the goofy EV comp lock, and lack of exposure lock button is the TTL dedication defaulting to 1/60th (or 1/75th at X-Sync). This means that many times it won't fire fill flash if it's within a stop of max sync, and slow-speed TTL sync is impossible without buying an in-between hot shoe mount with the switch like on the the AF-400T Grip . Some sites have reported covering or making a switch for the dedication pin to open up slow-sync possibilities.

I guess as the LX was the first TTL capable body, these flash shortcomings are forgivable, but still. Grr.
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