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07-30-2009, 03:57 AM   #1
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K1000 - The New Street Machine (1976)



For all you K1000 fans, from the Nov '76 Modern Photography mag.

07-30-2009, 04:36 AM   #2
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I just bought one today.=]
07-30-2009, 05:51 AM   #3
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I didnt know the K1000 was marketed with the last of the 55's. the MX and the ME came out the same year as the K1000 right? the 55/2 apparemtly only lasted one year as a K mount lens, 76-77 but the M 50/2 wasnt introduced till 79.
07-30-2009, 06:46 AM   #4
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their heft also makes them useful for self defense

07-30-2009, 07:32 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by séamuis Quote
I didnt know the K1000 was marketed with the last of the 55's. the MX and the ME came out the same year as the K1000 right? the 55/2 apparemtly only lasted one year as a K mount lens, 76-77 but the M 50/2 wasnt introduced till 79.
Yes the K55/2 standard lens was only available with the K1000, you could not buy it separately. You could still buy the K1000 body only and pick another prime if you want. The other K series and M series cameras were also sold with no lens and you picked what you wanted.

Phil.
07-30-2009, 08:21 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by gofour3 Quote
Yes the K55/2 standard lens was only available with the K1000, you could not buy it separately. You could still buy the K1000 body only and pick another prime if you want. The other K series and M series cameras were also sold with no lens and you picked what you wanted.

Phil.
so when did the K1000 start being offered with the M 50/2? ive seen it available with this lens as a kit and of course with the A 50/2 later on down the road. at what point did they switch from the K series to M? did they have enough stock of the K 55/2 to last till 79? because the M 50/2 wasnt on the market till then. thats a 3 year gap.
07-30-2009, 09:01 AM   #7
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"Inside...precision guts."

Awe. Some. And with some very necessary ellipses.
07-30-2009, 09:14 AM   #8
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vERY COOL...I believe most know how I feel about my beloved K1000's

07-30-2009, 09:18 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by jgredline Quote
vERY COOL...I believe most know how I feel about my beloved K1000's
I just started with film two months ago, I only have a K1000. Can't imagine why I'd need anything else, honestly.
07-30-2009, 10:24 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by séamuis Quote
so when did the K1000 start being offered with the M 50/2? ive seen it available with this lens as a kit and of course with the A 50/2 later on down the road. at what point did they switch from the K series to M? did they have enough stock of the K 55/2 to last till 79? because the M 50/2 wasnt on the market till then. thats a 3 year gap.
I guess after Pentax stopped production of the K55/2 in 1977 and until the M50/2 went into production in 1979, you had to pick one of the other standard lenses.
(M40/2.8, M50/1.4, M50/1.7 & K50/1.2)

The K1000 may have been like the other Pentax cameras, sold body only and you pick the lens. All the other k mount Pentax cameras at that time (K2DMD, K2, MX & ME) did not have lens/body combo packages.

I do not have a Pentax price guide from that period to verify this. The one I have is from Jan, 1977 and you had the option of getting a K1000 body only or getting a K55/2/K1000 combo with your choice of split/micro focus screens.

Phil.
07-30-2009, 02:29 PM   #11
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At the risk of offending the K1000 Club this is a camera I just don’t get and never did. When I bought my first film camera, an MX in 1982, I took a look at the K1000 and found it to be pretty Spartan even in that era. The shutter sounded really clunky as I recall and you couldn’t buy all the extra gadgets, drives, screens etc you could get for the MX. That sealed the deal for me and I haven’t regretted it. I later got a K2, which is the penultimate version of the K series line up. It had all that cool stuff: AE, faster x sync, +/- exposure comp. dial, mirror lock up etc that made it a far more appealing and expensive camera. The K2 is just a much better camera in every way and yet the K1000 commands a similar price on today’s used market. What is it you guys see in the K1000? It’s a mystery to me.

Tom G

Last edited by 8540tomg; 07-30-2009 at 02:39 PM. Reason: typo
07-30-2009, 02:36 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by 8540tomg Quote
At the risk of offending the K1000 Club this is a camera I just don’t get. When I bought my first film camera, an MX in 1982, I took a look at the K1000 and found it to be pretty Spartan even in that era. The shutter sounded really clunky as I recall and you couldn’t buy all the extra gadgets, drives, screens etc you could get for the MX. That sealed the deal for me and I haven’t regretted it. I later got a K2, which is the penultimate version of the K series line up. It had all that cool stuff: AE, faster x sync, +/- exposure comp. dial, mirror lock up etc that made it a far more appealing and expensive camera. The K2 is just a much better camera in every way and yet the K1000 commands a similar price on today’s used market. What is it you guys see in the K1000? It’s a mystery to me.

Tom G
Tom, it is the very reasons you describe, that endears itself to me and many others....It is flat cool
07-30-2009, 02:57 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by 8540tomg Quote
At the risk of offending the K1000 Club this is a camera I just don’t get. When I bought my first film camera, an MX in 1982, I took a look at the K1000 and found it to be pretty Spartan even in that era. The shutter sounded really clunky as I recall and you couldn’t buy all the extra gadgets, drives, screens etc you could get for the MX. That sealed the deal for me and I haven’t regretted it. I later got a K2, which is the penultimate version of the K series line up. It had all that cool stuff: AE, faster x sync, +/- exposure comp. dial, mirror lock up etc that made it a far more appealing and expensive camera. The K2 is just a much better camera in every way and yet the K1000 commands a similar price on today’s used market. What is it you guys see in the K1000? It’s a mystery to me.

Tom G
I understand what you are saying Tom. It makes no sense for a CLA'd K1000 to fetch the same price used in a shop as a KX or K2 and almost as much as a MX.

I think it is enough to say that the mystique of the K1000 is the same as that surrounding any other cult object. There have been many K-mount cameras with similar or better features and similar or better build in the same price range. I think that the allure can be summed up in a few points:
  • Simplicity of controls
  • Less to break
  • Easy to service
  • Robust, quality build
  • Huge lens choice
  • Known quantity
  • Easily available used
All of the above are what have made the K1000 the favorite of high school and college photography instructors everywhere. It is so much easier to put something like "K1000 (or fully manual equivalent)" on the required equipment list than to craft a paragraph explaining what a student should bring to class.

Beyond the cult standing, you have got to admit that it is not a bad camera. Despite comments regarding weight, its heft is truly about mid-range historically for 35mm film cameras and lighter than its K-series brethren. Its dimensions, as well as balance and handling, are essentially the same as the Spotmatic on which it is based. The only true design flaw that I am aware of is the lack of a meter switch.

Things could be a lot worse. A slight change in the winds of history and we all might have learned on Zenits...

Steve

(Actually learned photography with both a Lynx 1000 and a Singlex TLS...never owned a K1000...likely never will...)
07-30-2009, 04:18 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by 8540tomg Quote
At the risk of offending the K1000 Club this is a camera I just don’t get and never did. When I bought my first film camera, an MX in 1982, I took a look at the K1000 and found it to be pretty Spartan even in that era. The shutter sounded really clunky as I recall and you couldn’t buy all the extra gadgets, drives, screens etc you could get for the MX. That sealed the deal for me and I haven’t regretted it. I later got a K2, which is the penultimate version of the K series line up. It had all that cool stuff: AE, faster x sync, +/- exposure comp. dial, mirror lock up etc that made it a far more appealing and expensive camera. The K2 is just a much better camera in every way and yet the K1000 commands a similar price on today’s used market. What is it you guys see in the K1000? It’s a mystery to me.

Tom G
I wanted to get into film and I wanted to do it cheap. That's one reason I love mine. The other is that I do as much as I can manually (not exposure yet though), and with my K20D I found myself having to work around the way the camera was designed in order to do so- manual is not always simpler. The K1000 it is all I want in terms of features and nothing I don't want, if you get me. It not only allows but enables and forces me to decide how things are done, and in the process learn as much as I can from taking each photograph.
07-30-2009, 04:26 PM   #15
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Javier, Steve,

I’ll concede the cult status and the less-can-be more appeal of the old K1000. I’ll even admit it is not a bad camera and does what it does very well. There is little doubt the K1000 played a major role in keeping Pentax profitable through 1997 its last year of production in a 21 year (1976-1997) production run. Millions were sold and millions learned basic photography on this model. Historically, the K1000 is a very significant camera – no argument there. The K2 had a relatively short product run (1975-1977) and is by comparison almost irrelevant. I understand your well-argued positions but in spite of all this I still don’t get this camera. There is just not enough to it for my taste. I guess I’m just not cool Javier.

As I write I’m looking at my old K2 with the K 200/2.5 attached. I haven’t shot film for some time and one forgets how well made this generation of cameras and lenses were. I’ve got it on fully manual and while not exactly match needle metering it is very similar to the K1000 as I have to match the black needle with the blue one in the finder for correct exposure. If I’m in a hurry I can flip it over to auto exposure. Unlike the K1000 I can still see the shutter speed in the viewfinder. Moving the film advance lever is like winding a fine old watch. I’ve always been amazed at the ISO range on this camera 8 ~ 6400 vs. 32 ~ 3200 for the K1000. My current K10 only gives me ISO 100 ~1600 and the noise at 1600 makes it almost useless. Flip a switch and the mirror locks up. I can’t do that on my MX yet alone the K1000. Flash sync of 1/125 sec vs a pathetic 1/60 sec on the K1000. Feature for feature the K2 is superior in every conceivable way and yet it has always played second fiddle to the K1000. Go figure! The mystery continues for me. I’m pleased with the K2 and that is the important thing from my standpoint. I just think it is a camera which never got its due.

Oh - by-the-way Nesster. Thanks for posting these old adds. They are great.

Tom G

Last edited by 8540tomg; 07-31-2009 at 01:00 PM. Reason: typo
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