Quiz: What was the lightest "real" M-body package?
Ans: The MG with an SMC-A 50/2.0 at < ~535 grams/~1lb 3oz -- and the M /1.7 only added another 20 grams/< 1 oz.
For me, this was the perfect daylight walk-about package. If I'd had the money to get a pancake-40 it would have quite literally been a pocket camera. Pentax build quality and compact handling and all the functionality I needed short of doing special projects or low-light situations (I never cared much for flash but the shoe was there if needed).
With an M-mode lens it was as simple as it gets -- with hyper-focal distance set and the most likely Sunny-Sixteen aperture pre-selected for DOF control few situations needed more than a tweak of the focus or aperture rings. Exposure compensation? Use the ASA dial. And it used the ME Winder too.
The ME and ME-Super added a bit of functionality but at the price of additional complexity -- I seemed to always have to THINK about what to set with them while I always KNEW what was about to happen with the MG.
I got carried away once and put an SMC-A 1:4 /35~70 on one of the MG's. Should have been a sweet combination, and it worked with an ME-S, but all it did was mess up my simple habit patterns with the MG.
I did sort of miss the larger view finder of the ME's (.85 vs. .92 x-factor) but the lighter weight had to come from some compromise and younger eyes and snappy focusing primes got the job done anyway.
I eventually wore out one black body, sold another one and still have a nearly pristine MG sporting an M 50/1.7 sitting where it's handy should I ever have the urge to burn a roll of film again. I occassionally run "fire drills" with it just to confirm the old habits are still alive.
This was the camera that went out the door with me unless there was a good reason for something more complex. While not the most USEFUL camera, I voted this one "Miss Congeniality".
Added pictures of a black MG with Winder ME 2 grip and a size comparison with K1000.
Last edited by pacerr; 06-23-2009 at 04:56 PM.
Reason: Add pix