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04-11-2009, 10:58 AM   #31
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QuoteOriginally posted by jzietman Quote
So, do all light meters require batteries? I don't know how they work...
no, selenium light meters do not, but eventually they will fade out

04-11-2009, 01:02 PM   #32
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Back in the day my brother had an OM-1 - first small-bodied camera - great success - and forced Pentax to respond, killing the K-sized bodies and creating the entire M-line. Your issues might be lens availability and service.
04-11-2009, 01:06 PM   #33
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QuoteOriginally posted by jzietman Quote
Now to build the fire: many people here have mentioned the Olympus OM. Please, tell em about it and why I'd be better off with pentax
Oooohhh...you do like to stir tings up, don't you...

I have a beauty of an Olympus OM2n which was my first SLR (had manual mode and aperture priority).

Pros:
They are very compact, smooth winding and fairly quiet.

Although, they have been referred to by some as the "Saab of cameras" because of the different design (shutter speed ring on the front of the camera surrounding the lens mount), I love the ergonomics and function of it.

While you look through the viewfinder, you can easily change the shutter speed with your left hand and never take your right index finger off the shutter button.

Exposure compensation in 1/3 stop increments can be helpful...to someone.

Zuiko glass is historically stellar as well.

Cons:
Though it has a nice viewfinder, it has a tiny, unlit meter making it a bugger to use in low light.

The weakest link is the hotshoe which is made of plastic and can be attached or removed from the body. They typically crack and break, so they are becoming harder and harder to come by. I sold mine with a second body that I had -- I didn't want it.

Cloth shutter -- "Titanium" just sounds stronger, don't you think?

The lens mount is discontinued, which means that most of the lenses are cheap, but this is a double-edged sword. I bought most of my OM stuff in the past 4 years after the mount was discontinued, but the value is still falling, so I take a pretty big loss on everything I sell. Although most of the Pentax hubub is about using old lenses on the new digital SLR's, one of my favorite lenses for my ME Super is my Tamron 90mm macro -- a current-production lens that can be used manually on my Pentax film bodies with no adapters.

You will probably never buy a 40mm lens for street photography. The Olympus 40mm is somewhat of a cult item that fetches over $400 to this day.

Typically Repairs and CLA's are a bit more costly than for Pentax.

For my purposes, the ME super is just a hair more compact than the OM2n, has a STURDY hotshoe, the LED meter is highly visible, and I got a 40mm lens for under $100. Did I mention that the ME Super goes up to 1/2000 on the shutter (1/1000 for the OM2n)? Also, several of the Pentax cameras that take modern batteries will continue to work in some fashion where the OM2n (like most of the later OM cameras) becomes a doorstop. The OM1 was a fine mechanical, all manual body, but wasn't quite as refined as the OM2n and required mercury batteries -- you would have to either have the meter re-calibrated to use a voltage adapter to use the meter accurately.
04-11-2009, 01:23 PM   #34
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I figured I'd stir the pot a little. Didn't feel too dangerous, so far this has been the most welcoming forum I've ever come to as a newcomer.

I've bid on an MX on ebay. It comes with a vivitar 1:2.6 wide angle lens; I'm not too sure I like that anymore. It would probably be fine if I got it for the $55 I've now bid, but I'm sure it'll go up (beyond my max bid) before the time runs out in the next few hours. Another one's just jumped from $70 to $120, so... I'd rather get one of the pentax lenses (I think), and I'm not really going for wide angle as my main lens.

We'll see how this one turns out. I like the features and reported build quality of the MX, but it might be that I can't quite afford it at the end, since I'll be sending the camera in for inspection/repair upon receipt. I'm going to keep my eyes open for KXs and KMs as well. I think the k1000 might be a bit too old school for me. I do love the sound of DOF preview, wish I'd had it before.

04-11-2009, 02:34 PM   #35
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QuoteOriginally posted by jzietman Quote
I figured I'd stir the pot a little. Didn't feel too dangerous, so far this has been the most welcoming forum I've ever come to as a newcomer.
Only because you came to the right section. This being the ''film'' section...Believe me, most other parts of this forum is not so friendly...
04-11-2009, 06:51 PM   #36
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QuoteOriginally posted by jgredline Quote
So Mike, what would you have chosen?
The only thing I have that fits all four of the things on my list (and that I own) would be an old Konica S fixed-lens rangefinder from about 1959:




I have others (Pentax SV, Ricoh 35 DeLuxe) that fit most of the particulars, except that it would break my heart if something happened to them.
04-11-2009, 10:42 PM   #37
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No luck on the MX. I think I've going to try to get a KX now (my hands aren't the smallest, anyway), maybe a KM as backup.

You guys have been great. Thanks so much!
04-12-2009, 12:22 PM   #38
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Can anyone tell me how the features compare between the KX and the KM?

04-12-2009, 12:51 PM   #39
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QuoteOriginally posted by Unshriven Quote
Can anyone tell me how the features compare between the KX and the KM?
Go here K-Mount Bodies for comparison of features and here Best Bodies for a discussion of the "Best" Pentax K-mount camera bodies.
04-13-2009, 02:27 PM   #40
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Bought a KM + 50mm SMC 1:2 lens off ebay. Thank you everyone for your help, and I'll report back with results!
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