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05-25-2010, 05:28 AM   #31
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Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Sydney
Posts: 63
The Zenit Helios range 58mm 1:2 44M- (x) have been getting a lot of very positive comments on the manual focus forums of late. Now, they are cheap; I got one for $20 (ding in filter ring). I bought it only to check the infinity focus on my 50/1.4 Super Tak with the adapter I had. I'll give it a run on it's own when I get the chance. But at that price, you can't go too wrong.

05-25-2010, 05:55 AM   #32
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Join Date: May 2008
Location: Virginia
Posts: 376
It is no surprise that your Spotmatic is working correctly. Simply put, the camera is a tank. It is also a piece of precision opitical equipment, as are screwmount lenses. With proper care, your Spottie may outlast you.

With regard to lenses, your experience with the 55/1.8 is not surprising. In fact, I believe it is Pentax's best normal lens. I have owned and used normals from all of the major Japanese manufacturers, and the 55/1.8 is the sharpest and most detailed. The fact that one can often find this lens in good shape for under $50 is mind boggling.

I would highly recommend the 200/4 (of any Takumar variety). I have the Super Takumar version, and it is truly splendid. It is probably my best lens. The 50/1.4 is unnessary, and it is also a radioactive lens. I do not wish to debate the issue of radioactive materials in lenses, but, for my part, I now avoid them. It is a very fine lens, though. If you absolutely need a 50mm focal length, I recommend the 50/4 macro.

I wish you well in using screwmount gear and Pentax equipment in general. After years of being distracted by Canon, Nikon, Minolta, and Olympus, I have realized what is truly the best system. For me, it is a Spotmatic or M body and a screwmount lens. I suppose my dabbling with other equipment has served a useful purpose: I now truly appreciate the elements, features, and performance of Pentax equipment. The more I compared, the more I realized the impossible is true--that Pentax lenses are better than Nikon lenses...and that Pentax bodies are more thoughtfully designed than Nikon bodies...right down to the "shutter cocked" reminder on the Pentax top plate.

Last edited by zx-m; 05-25-2010 at 06:02 AM. Reason: typo

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