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11-15-2009, 04:41 PM   #1
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Pentax MX, a question.

On Friday I came across two Asahi Pentax MXs, one black and one silver, in eight to eight and an half (out of 10) condition.

As I have a preference for the silver models (of any camera), I went for the silver and spent some of the weekend attempting to use up a twenty-four exposure Fuji Superia Extra 400 ISO colour-print film. I didn't quite succeed, as we were in the 10th day of a continuous high 30 to low 40 degree heatwave; the temperatures over the weekend hitting 42 degs C.

The one I took came with a 1.7/50 "M" lens (the other with a 2.0/50 lens).

I found the metering display rather unusual (LEDs in three colours , but I'll get used to it).

The manual (off the web) mentions that the meter uses a "GPD" cell. What the hell is that? Can someone enlighten me, please

The camera came with a rather worn but useable "ready case". It is a pity it is made of a rather cheap, plasticised cardboard instead of the leather found in earlier models, such as the Spotties and the "K" series.

Also, it appears to me that the gauge of the body material is relatively flimsy, as compared to earlier models, as it is relatively rare to find the earlier models with the same dents and buckles (in top plates and prism housings) which seem to plague almost all of the MXs that I have come across in my search for a copy to buy (including this one, though relatively minor)

As I said, it does have some very small dents/buckles in the top plate and around the winder opening, but nowhere near as bad as some copies I have seen.

If someone could explain what a "GPD" metering cell is, I would appreciate it.

Thanks


Last edited by Banjo; 11-15-2009 at 10:24 PM.
11-15-2009, 04:59 PM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by Banjo Quote

The manual (off the web) mentions that the meter uses a "GPD" cell. What the hell is that? Can someone enlighten me, please
Gallium-arsenide Photo Diode -- Very good, very fast, and very sensitive. This was an upgrade from the Silicon Photo Diode cells (SPD) found in most other cameras of the day.

QuoteQuote:

The camera came with a rather worn but useable "ready case". It is a pity it is made of a rather cheap, plasticised cardboard instead of the leather found in earlier models, such as the Spotties and the "K" series.
There is a shop near me that has the premium leather everready case. I can inquire for you if you like.

Steve
11-15-2009, 06:20 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by Banjo Quote
On Friday I came across two Asahi Pentax MXs, one black and one silver, in eight to eigth and an half (out of 10) condition.

As I have a preference for the silver models (of any camera)
What the hell happened to the black one and how much was it? If it worked, I'd have traded you a much better silver LX for it.

QuoteQuote:
I found the metering display rather unusual (LEDs in three colours , but I'll get used to it).

The manual (off the web) mentions that the meter uses a "GPD" cell. What the hell is that? Can someone enlighten me, please
Gallium(-arsenide) photodiode. It's basically like the old cadmium sulphides - except they're respond fast. Instantaneously, even. And there's no needle to to wobble. And you can check the exposure when the light's not so good.

So like the older meters, except better in every possible way.

QuoteQuote:
The camera came with a rather worn but useable "ready case". It is a pity it is made of a rather cheap, plasticised cardboard instead of the leather found in earlier models, such as the Spotties and the "K" series.
The official name is "eveready case," the technical name is "neveready case." Pentax probably stopped making them from leather as it was a pointless expense. Anyone who's actually shot a camera with neveready case on isn't likely to do it again.

QuoteQuote:
Also, it appears to me that the gauge of the body material is relatively flimsy, as compared to earlier models, as it is relatively rare to find the earlier models with the same dents and buckles (in top plates and prism housings) which seem to plague almost all of the MXs that I have come across in my search for a copy to buy (including this one, though relatively minor)

As I said, it does have some very small dents/buckles in the top plate and around the winder opening, but nowhere near as bad as some copies I have seen.
It may also be noted that the old screwmount cameras weigh somewhere in the range of several hundred kilograms, and require some sort of crane to use effectively. The M series were made from slightly thinner brass - it made the cameras less expensive, and lighter. Both my MX top plates are in pretty good nick. Get me that black MX and I'll send you the other one to replace your top plate.
11-15-2009, 07:00 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by lithos Quote
What the hell happened to the black one and how much was it? If it worked, I'd have traded you a much better silver LX for it.
.

Dear Lithos and Stevebrot,

Thanks to both of you for responding: good information on the GPD, thanks.

Thanks Stevebrot for offering to help find a leatherette "ever-ready case" but I would have too many technial difficulties to overcome to get it (from OZ).

Lithos,
The asking price for the black model was Aus $195. If you want it, I imagine it is still available (still there late last Friday) at "Photoco" (contact details in this link);

www.photococamerahouse.com

Give them a call (Ask for "Steve"). Let's hear how you got on. It has an "M" 2.0/50 lens. It has some small brassing here and there (the sharp bits that stick out) but no obvious major "dings" that I recall. Probably fewer than on the one I took, and that was already quite acceptable. As for the rest of it, it seemed to be in clean working order (I did handle it and "try it out"), but ask Steve, he'll give you a fair rundown on it.

I'll pass on the "top plate" offer (the one I have is quite acceptable), but thanks anyway.

Best wishes

BTW: this is one very reliable, decades old, family-owned bricks & mortar business and they give a dependable money-back guarantee on their second-hand sales. I have been dealing with them for some time, and always found them to be honest and fair, and to stand by their warranty.


Last edited by Banjo; 11-15-2009 at 07:14 PM.
11-15-2009, 07:09 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by Banjo Quote
BTW: this is one very reliable, decades old, family-owned bricks & mortar business and they give a dependable money-back guarantee on their second-hand sales. I have been dealing with them for some time, and always found them to be honest and fair, and to stand by their warranty.
Their prices certainly seem a lot more realistic than Michaels' down in Melbourne
11-15-2009, 07:53 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by lithos Quote
What the hell happened to the black one and how much was it? If it worked, I'd have traded you a much better silver LX for it.
Really? I got a nice working black MX, I don't mind trading for a better silver LX for it

Got a couple of black LX already, but never really had a silver one yet
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