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06-26-2009, 09:18 PM   #1
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Short question!

Is there a pentax body with Aperture indicator that works with M lenses on Av mode, yet still have a viewfinder that is bright and equipped with split screen?

Thanks

06-26-2009, 09:22 PM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by Andi Lo Quote
Is there a pentax body with Aperture indicator that works with M lenses on Av mode, yet still have a viewfinder that is bright and equipped with split screen?

Thanks
If I'm reading you right, at least the Super Program/Super A will do that, and I'm pretty sure the Program Plus/Program A will, anyway. The finder's not as nice as like an ME Super's, but it's still 'modern'

Edit: Hrm nope, that wasn't correct. I was thinking of something else. (what it could be, I dunno, pretty sure it's something with LCDs in the finder I'm thinking of, though. I still haven't done the seals on the Super A I just got, so, not used to it, after all these years. (I don't use the automatic exposure much, anyway.)

At least one of the LX finders has a peep window that reflects the number right off the aperture ring, though, that ought to fill the bill nicely.

Last edited by Ratmagiclady; 06-26-2009 at 09:35 PM.
06-26-2009, 09:38 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by Andi Lo Quote
Is there a pentax body with Aperture indicator that works with M lenses on Av mode, yet still have a viewfinder that is bright and equipped with split screen?

Thanks
Your best (and most expensive, probably) solution is the LX.
06-26-2009, 09:57 PM   #4
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The closest thing to what you are describing, outside of a LX, is not made by Pentax...

The evil cousin...Ricoh, made several bodies in the late 70s and early 80s that fit your description. The XR-2, XR-2s, XR7, and XR-S models all have full information viewfinders, Av mode, full-metered manual, vertical run metal shutters, DOF preview, and split-image/microprism viewfinders. The XR7 and XR-S have AE lock while the XR-2/2s has viewfinder shutter and mirror up with self-timer as value-added features.

I own the XR-2s and XR7 and feel that both are well-built, handle nicely, and a worthy alternative to Pentax K-mount cameras of the same vintage. I might also add that you can buy three XR-2s or XR7 for the price of a KX.

Steve

(Also own the KX...paid 3x more for it...nice camera, but not sure it is 3x better...)


Last edited by stevebrot; 06-26-2009 at 10:11 PM.
06-26-2009, 11:37 PM   #5
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FWIW the Sears KS auto is identical to the Ricoh XR-2s.

I owned and used several Ricoh K-mount SLRs.
They're nice but IMO a notch below Pentax in quality.

Chris
06-26-2009, 11:45 PM   #6
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I was gonna suggest the Ricoh XR-2, but stevebrot beat me to it...

I was shooting with mine just yesterday - lovely camera. The only downside is that the vf readout is tough to see in very low light.
06-27-2009, 01:15 AM   #7
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In a Pentax, the only camera that I know of, is the LX.
06-27-2009, 03:29 AM   #8
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My experience of Ricoh is LOUD shutters. True for anybody else?

06-27-2009, 08:35 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by artobest Quote
My experience of Ricoh is LOUD shutters. True for anybody else?
The Copal and Seiko metal shutters do tend to be louder than a traditional horizontal cloth curtain. You could wake the dead with the Copal on my Singlex TLS. Interestingly, the shutter on my KX is almost as loud as the Copal on the XR-2s and louder than the Seiko on the XR7. Go figure. Maybe it is just my copy.

Steve
06-27-2009, 09:01 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by ChrisPlatt Quote
FWIW the Sears KS auto is identical to the Ricoh XR-2s.

I owned and used several Ricoh K-mount SLRs.
They're nice but IMO a notch below Pentax in quality.

Chris
I would tend to agree, though it depends a lot on which bodies. Some of the Pentax product in the 80s and newer are pretty sad. Ditto for many Ricohs. On my two K-mount Ricohs the only build issues I can point out would be:
  • The self-timer on the XR-2s (I have not seen one that was not broken off)
  • The film wind on both the XR-2s and XR7 (always felt a little flimsy to me)
  • Weak plastic on the Judas window housing of the XR-2s (mine has fine cracks)
I would generally consider the XR7 as having very good build and (except for the film wind lever) is every bit as good, in my opinion, as a Pentax ME Super. The body, while clad in polycarbonate, is build on a machined aluminum chassis. The electronics are well designed and robust as well. I might sound like I am blowing wind on this, but my original XR7 (purchased in 1982) survived thousands of miles banging against the side of my backpack frame and functioned flawlessly until an unfortunate interlude with a bad Zenitar a year ago that damaged the mirror box.

My XR-2s is larger and heavier than the XR7 (exactly the same size and very close in weight to my KX). It is not as finely crafted as the KX, overall, but is close in most areas and better in others. (The ASA setting dial on my KX feels and works like it belongs on a Zenit).

In any case, for the features that the OP requested, these two Ricoh models (or equivalent Sears) are worth considering. Copies in very good condition are often available for well under $50 at auction. Compared to the outlay for a LX, I think I could live with a "step down" in quality .

Steve

(Unabashed Ricoh fan boy and new KX owner...)
06-27-2009, 01:20 PM   #11
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Seeing the LX is worth as much as a FA 43 I don't think I can justify the purchase of the LX (maybe buy a broken one + 200$ CLA?). Thanks for the answers everyone. I'll go check these Ricoh/Sears Camera out
06-27-2009, 02:57 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by Andi Lo Quote
Seeing the LX is worth as much as a FA 43 I don't think I can justify the purchase of the LX (maybe buy a broken one + 200$ CLA?). Thanks for the answers everyone. I'll go check these Ricoh/Sears Camera out
Be aware that there are a ton of models with a full mix of features in both Sears and Ricoh garb. There is also little logic in the naming. Some with very fancy-sounding names have very basic features. Manuals for almost all Ricoh SLRs may be found at the Butkus site (Ricoh Camera instruction manuals). From the manuals you can usually get a good idea of features and specs.

Steve
06-27-2009, 08:50 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
Be aware that there are a ton of models with a full mix of features in both Sears and Ricoh garb. There is also little logic in the naming. Some with very fancy-sounding names have very basic features. Manuals for almost all Ricoh SLRs may be found at the Butkus site (Ricoh Camera instruction manuals). From the manuals you can usually get a good idea of features and specs.

Steve
A useful reference for sorting out these Japanese SLRs is the book, 'Japanese 35mm SLR Cameras: A Comprehensive Data Guide' by Hansen and Dierdorff. I got mine on Amazon as a used copy for about $2 - the shipping was more than the book. Unfortunately, Sears models are not addressed, so you have to do a little Googling to sort them out.

My daughter would like a film SLR that would let her easily take multiple exposures. Has to be a screw or K-mount and the Ricoh XR-2 or XR-7 look like they would work.

If the Ricohs are bad for chaotic naming, the Chinons are crazy.

Hey, while I am thinking of it, I just got a Sears 50mm f2 lens in K-mount for $1.80 on Ebay, with shipping it was <$10 and this thing is CRAZY sharp, sharper than my Pentax-A or Pentax-M 50 f2 versions. From what I can tell this is the same as the XR Rikenon model. Build quality is not as good as the Pentax lenses but the optics are sure there.
06-28-2009, 08:32 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by ChrisPlatt Quote
FWIW the Sears KS auto is identical to the Ricoh XR-2s.

Chris
I bought one of these on ebay for 5 bucks and it works great!
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