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06-23-2009, 10:56 AM   #1
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Question on other cameras with K mounts

Hello,

I'm not even sure this belongs to this section but anyways, What is the story behind other camera manufacturers using Pentax mounts back then? Like Ricoh, Chinon and maybe others. Was Pentax involved in the development of these or was it only licensing the mount? Was there any parts/design sharing? How do these cameras compare to their Pentax counterparts?
This is more out of a curiosity after getting a Sears branded Ricoh camera with our beloved mount.

Thanks,

06-23-2009, 01:02 PM   #2
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Basically, Chinon and Ricoh were using the K-mount with some sort of licensing agreements. Ricoh actually had a slight variation but those lenses would work on Pentax cameras. Sears had some decent lens in what was called a pkr mount. Sometimes those lenses can cause problems on the new digital Pentax bodies but sometimes not. I have 3 of those lenses. I have 2 copies of the model 202 135mm f2.8 lens, one got stuck when I tried to use it on my K200d and the other didn't. I strictly use them on the film bodies because of that. Some people have removed the Ricoh pin but I didn't want to do that. I have the Sears 80-20mm and the Ricoh pin causes problems on the k200d as well.

Anyway, when Chinon went autofocus, the lens compatablilty shifted. Those Chinon AF lenses won't work on Pentax bodies. Vivitar also had some cameras made with k-mount bodies and Sigma did as well. Sigma also has a mount of their own. Ricoh and Chinon are usually the best bet for film bodies as long as you stick with the manual focus bodies. I think you can use mf pentax lenses on the AF Chinon bodies but am not sure.
06-23-2009, 02:48 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by Blue Quote
Sometimes those lenses can cause problems on the new digital Pentax bodies but sometimes not.
Had to dig out the feeler gauges the other day to get one of the after market lenses off of a friends K200. The look on his face when he came over with the camera in his hand.
06-23-2009, 06:26 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by Rustyoldbug Quote
Had to dig out the feeler gauges the other day to get one of the after market lenses off of a friends K200. The look on his face when he came over with the camera in his hand.
The Ricoh pin can create panic for sure.

06-23-2009, 06:59 PM   #5
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Voigtlander are using the K-mount at present.
06-23-2009, 08:09 PM   #6
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Wasn't K mount developed by Zeiss?
If so, pentax and others may have got the license from Zeiss.
06-23-2009, 08:10 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Damn Brit Quote
Voigtlander are using the K-mount at present.
Here it is. Voigtlander, Pentax K-Mount SLR, AE, with 35-70mm f3.5 Zoom

The were doing the m42 Bessaflex as well.

Here is the aforementioned Vivitar as well.

59880 Vivitar V3800N SLR Multi Exposure Camera with 50/1.7 lens

Edit: Once upon a time, a vaguely remember seeing a Fuji branded body that took K-mount lenses.

Last edited by Blue; 06-23-2009 at 08:32 PM.
06-23-2009, 08:13 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by eSFotos Quote
Wasn't K mount developed by Zeiss?
If so, pentax and others may have got the license from Zeiss.
It is my understanding that it was designed by Zeiss for an alliance with Pentax. There was supposed to be a series of cameras and lenses jointly developed and produced. The deal fell through but Pentax went with the k-mount anyway.

Edit: Keep in mind it was East German Zeiss Contax that came up with the m42 and released it on a Contax SLR in 1949.


Last edited by Blue; 06-23-2009 at 08:30 PM.
06-23-2009, 08:41 PM   #9
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Wow. I don't believe I've seen that K-mount Voigtlander. Is that new? Kind of strange-looking, really. But nice of them to make something. I'm guessing it's not up to the standards of the rangefinders, offhand?
06-23-2009, 08:53 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ratmagiclady Quote
Wow. I don't believe I've seen that K-mount Voigtlander. Is that new? Kind of strange-looking, really. But nice of them to make something. I'm guessing it's not up to the standards of the rangefinders, offhand?
It is probably a rebadged Cosina (C1S maybe). I think the Vivitar linked above is made by Cosina also. Cosina-Voigtlander stuff is made in Japan for what its worth. That would be a clue to verify whether the Viv cameras are made by Cosina.

Edit: Here is a link to the K-mount Cosina C1S > http://www.cameraquest.com/cosina_c1s.htm

Last edited by Blue; 06-23-2009 at 09:32 PM.
06-23-2009, 09:20 PM   #11
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Kinda liked the look of that Bessaflex, myself. Topcon-ey.
06-23-2009, 09:25 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ratmagiclady Quote
Kinda liked the look of that Bessaflex, myself. Topcon-ey.
I found the 1/2000 shutter speed on an m42 body intriguing.
06-23-2009, 09:58 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by Blue Quote
I found the 1/2000 shutter speed on an m42 body intriguing.
Ah, hadn't even considered that, *peeking* Noticed that as eye candy when I was poking around there, hadn't really mattered till I got some Pentax. (Still have no screw-mount lenses, as yet, anyway.) The prospect of a bright modern finder and a new meter, I think, would be the best part for me. Too bad you don't get a full microprism, though: that's one of my favorite parts of the older cameras
06-24-2009, 10:11 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ratmagiclady Quote
Ah, hadn't even considered that, *peeking* Noticed that as eye candy when I was poking around there, hadn't really mattered till I got some Pentax. (Still have no screw-mount lenses, as yet, anyway.) The prospect of a bright modern finder and a new meter, I think, would be the best part for me. Too bad you don't get a full microprism, though: that's one of my favorite parts of the older cameras

It seems they are out of production and used ones are rare.
06-24-2009, 01:07 PM   #15
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Ok, there is some misinformation above:

Current K-mount film cameras:
  • Cosina
  • Vivitar (rebadged Cosina)
  • Others?
  • Voigtländer does not and has never made a K-mount camera AFIK, unless you want to count Cosina = Voigtländer.

Ricoh, Sears, Ricoh pin, etc.:
  • Ricoh made standard K-mount lenses (initially)
  • Sears is rebranded Ricoh for all K-mount and most M42 bodies
  • Ricoh also made the Ricoh-P K-mount variant with the infamous Ricoh pin. These may be distinguished from other K-mount lenses by the pin and the "P" setting on the aperture ring
  • Ricoh-P lenses from third-party makers are labeled PK/R, PKR, KR etc.
  • Some third-party makers made a mount with both the Ricoh pin and Pentax "A" contacts
  • Not all Ricoh and Sears lenses have the Ricoh pin

Other stuff:
  • Zeiss did not invent the K-mount
  • Both Voigtländer and Zeiss make K-mount lenses
  • Voigtländer did make the Bessaflex TM M42 screw mount SLR
  • There are rumors of collaboration between Ricoh and Pentax on K-mount lens design and manufacture. I don't remember the models, but some lenses are considered to be identical between the lines.
  • Many of the non-Pentax K-mount cameras were quite capable fairly sturdy. While some might argue that the odd Ricoh, Chinon, or Cosina was not built to the same quality standards as Pentax, there sure seem to be a lot of good working examples floating around.

Steve

(Have Ricoh XR-2s and XR7 bodies...)

Last edited by stevebrot; 06-24-2009 at 01:25 PM.
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