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05-23-2009, 01:29 PM   #1
Ole's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Copenhagen, Denmark
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Posts: 3,881
Pentax KM

Year introduced
Meter range
3 - 18 EV
Meter pattern
ISO range
DX ISO range
No DX coding
Exposure modes
M, B
Exposure compensation
Not applicable
Exposure memory lock
Not applicable
Shutter speeds (auto)
Not applicable
Shutter speeds (manual)
1 - 1/1000s, B
Shutter speeds (mechanical)
1 - 1/1000s, B
Self timer
Mirror lock-up
Auto bracketing
Not applicable
Multiple exposures
Built-in flash
TTL flash
P-TTL flash
Sync speed
Flash exposure comp
Not applicable
Autofocus sensitivity
Not applicable
Power zoom
0.87x, 93%
Viewfinder type
Diopter correction
Exchangeable screen
Depth of field preview
Image size
24 x 36 mm
Panorama format
Battery grip/pack
Size (W x H x D)
143 x 91.5 x 52 mm
622 g

Attached Images
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PENTAX K10D  Photo 
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PENTAX K20D  Photo   

Last edited by Ole; 05-06-2010 at 10:43 PM.
10-29-2009, 05:07 AM   #2
MRRiley's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Sterling, VA, USA
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Posts: 6,276
The KM was my first ever SLR and I have it to this day and it's going strong. I'm getting ready to send it and my MX off for a cleaning but only out of a desire to further extend it's life. This camera was also AWOL for about 6 years after I loaned it to my son to take to college. When he came back the KM was nowhere to be found until about 6 months ago when I found it buried in a box of his clothes when cleaning and sorting stuff in the garage. Needless to say I was thrilled and relieved at the re-discovery.

These cameras are built like rocks or tanks and will take any punishment you can dish out. Mine has been everywhere from the summit of Pikes Peak to the depths of some of the deepest caves in Tennessee and Alabama. It's been wet (never dunked), it's been frozen, it's been roasted and it's always delivered.

04-13-2010, 03:43 PM   #3
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Sluggo's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Ames, Iowa
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Posts: 601
Could be the perfect SLR, depending on your style

I've done my share of shooting with K1000s, like many other people here. At those times, the one thing I keep finding myself wishing for is depth of field preview. Once in every ten shots or so, it's of critical use in composing more confidently in three dimensions. But now I have a KM. It is essentially identical to the K1000, except it adds the DOF preview feature and a self-timer.

To me, the charm of the KM (just like the K1000 and the Spotmatics) is the viewfinder. It's big enough and bright enough to be involving, but it's also undistracting; there are no lights, no icons, no numbers. Just that simple needle. Strictly speaking, that makes it less informative than the heads-up displays you are probably used to, but you might find an upside, which is a stronger Zen-like sense of connection with the subject.

You have probably read other people citing the viewfinder as a reason these models should be avoided! But we don't all think alike. More so than any other camera design aspect, the "right" viewfinder is personal, a question of how your creative mind works.

Prices on KMs seem to vary quite a bit. Sometimes you can find them cheaper than a K1000 in similar condition, because the latter is so much better known.

The only thing I wish Pentax had done differently on this model would have been to add a tangible meter switch; I worry sometimes about forgetting the lens cap and running the battery down.
06-15-2010, 06:14 PM   #4
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gofour3's Avatar

Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Vancouver, Canada
Posts: 5,339
Pentax KM Camera Review

Pros Famous K series looks and build.
Cons No mirror lock-up, no shutter release lock leaver, no "Judas" window.
Rating 8
Price Black - $150.00, Silver - $50.00 (Estimated, was purchased in a kit)
Years Owned 1

I can recommend this camera: Yes

Value, Features, Performance & Size
The KM is kind of unique as it has the looks of a KX but some of the features of a screw mount Spotmatic. It shares the same soft Eveready case as the KX. The KM was the least expensive K series body from the original 1975 line-up.

- Famous K series looks and build. (Comes in black & silver)
- Easy to use/set film speed (ASA) dial.
- DOF preview button.
- Self Timer.

Missing Features Compared to the KX.
- No mirror lock-up.
- No shutter release lock leaver.
- Meter is turned on by removing lens cap.
- Matching needle meter system.
- Unable to see shutter speed or aperture setting (Judas window) from viewfinder.

Camera Review
The KM is the latest addition to my K series body collection and my recent "Black" looks as good as a K2.

Overall not a bad Pentax body, but you can get a KX for close to the same price and the KX is a better overall choice.

However as a fully manual film camera for “students” this is a way better choice than a K1000 and is around the same price.

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