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Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 09-14-2009, 08:58 PM  
Czj Biotar 58mm f/2.0
Posted By Ron Redwood
Replies: 29
Views: 23,442
A 1B is even a bit mild for blue reduction,though Un-bluing is easy in post process.
I used as I tecall a warmer 70 B...I live in the redwood forests of California so a greenish blue cast can be a common issue.

When I used a CJ Tessar I thought it was warmish and now I use a Novoflexar for a bellows lens and its on the warm side...which I tend to prefer.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 09-14-2009, 08:47 PM  
Czj Biotar 58mm f/2.0
Posted By Ron Redwood
Replies: 29
Views: 23,442
Also....something I believe,when in doubt,get closer.

Those kids have great eyes....and remarkable...they can even keep still for 1/125 of a sec.

At one point I quit shooting kids and horses...they are just TOO easy. Both just instinctively set you up with a pose that's just right..yet natural.

One of my best shots (blue ribbon winner) was a Blue Macaw that GAVE me a perfect pose. I wanted to get IN CLOSE, had a 100 mm with a macro tube....and the bird turned profile and put near every feather in the DOF plane...that was a Kodachrome and the stunning blue + gold, the full detail of each feather,the cocked head with one eye looking right into perfect sunny daylight,was a rare mix. I just took 2 shots and said thank you to that bird as I KNEW I'd nailed a winner shot.

Years ago, a meadow near here had a large Pear tree that in autumn had great colors. There were a few horses in the meadow and the most photogenic,a pinto, would walk over under that gorgeous Pear tree and start posing. Uncanny.

these days...I'm a bit lazy and if I come across some kids,horses or macaws...I'd be happy to shoot more film and let them do their stuff.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 09-14-2009, 08:22 PM  
If you only had 2 lenses.......
Posted By Ron Redwood
Replies: 57
Views: 6,464
A MF I have had a long while,and love is the Tamron adaptall 28 2.5. It's TINY and rather fast. On a Digi would act as a 35 mm, IMHO,the best landscape lens. 2.5 is decent fast indoors. You can get one at a real nice price and it's gonna out sharp any zoom.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 09-14-2009, 08:15 PM  
If you only had 2 lenses.......
Posted By Ron Redwood
Replies: 57
Views: 6,464
you need a good wide for landscape + close quarters but I'm not keen on autofocus,might try getting a nice compact MF 70-150 like my Tamron.

Not sure I'd marry any woman who'd restrict me to 2 lenses on a trip to England....but maybe she's a damn good cook. :D
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 09-14-2009, 08:04 PM  
Vivitar 90mm f2.8 macro
Posted By Ron Redwood
Replies: 8
Views: 4,995
Worth note, My Pentax K 100 Macro,while razor sharp is just 1:2,as is the famed Tamron 90,though the Tammy can be had with the tube to make it a 1:1

Unless you really have a great macro lens...why sell it?
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 09-14-2009, 07:59 PM  
Vivitar 90mm f2.8 macro
Posted By Ron Redwood
Replies: 8
Views: 4,995
It has a VERY good rep and will beat most modern zooms in resolution by a lot. The Series One version is more high grade but Komine also made some of the best Series Ones and their Non S-1's were among Vivitar's best stuff. The Series One version goes at over $100 ebay but if not a Series One I'd still expect $65-80.
Forum: Non-Pentax Cameras: Canon, Nikon, etc. 09-14-2009, 07:09 PM  
Cosina K-mount SLR fan thread
Posted By Ron Redwood
Replies: 2
Views: 6,780
I had and sold a Cosina C-1. It's kind of minimalist like a K 1000 but the body has a rubbery skin,kind of an ergo shape,1/2000 max speed,LEDs inside,red for over or under and green for "on target" I have a Chinon CM 7 that's similar though it looks more traditional. In hindsight I probably should have kept that C 1. Real functional BASIC 35.

Cosina specialized in low % and basic. However, they did some good stuff.
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 09-14-2009, 06:36 PM  
What is it worth? ME Super and Lens
Posted By Ron Redwood
Replies: 7
Views: 2,813
Right. ME Super body on ebay probably averages under $30,a bit more with the 50 mm on it. The Stuck Mirror thing is rather common and a non working ME Super is maybe $5-10 Given that price range, a seals kit and some gentle Q Tip about as far as I'd tend to go. You can "read between the lines" on ebay, the LOW price is often the bulk "estate sale" buyer,or the guy who's dad died and left a camera in the closet. Often this buyer can barely describe the camera or say it works at ALL. There's ALSO tricksters who will claim ignorance on an As-Is when they KNOW its DOA. Many DO mean well.

I bought a Super + winder + zoom and a vaguely described macro lens all for $50 plus. The Super...dead. Winder...dead. The zoom was a good Vivitar,I think 28-135 and I got maybe $35 for it...but the poorly described macro was the 100 4.0 Pentax K Macro which runs about $100 on ebay......

So......I could not bitch about the dead Super.

My experiance is that if I'm buying to resell....I skip the ME Super (too many busted ones) and look for P3 and P3N. They make a great starter/student camera and somehow seem always in good functional shape.
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 09-14-2009, 06:00 PM  
Someone Help! How much is my Pentax Worth?
Posted By Ron Redwood
Replies: 2
Views: 2,419
That combo on ebay may fetch $50-80 on ebay,a bit higher as a local Craigslist sale ($20 more?) but on Craigs it may not sell soon. On ebay you'd probably do best selling the big zoom seperate. It might get $50 by itself. Ive got PZ 10/SF 10 body + midrange Pentax zoon for $25-40,picking off "between the cracks" bargains",but if you CONFIRM all works,do good pics, you can do better. Start the Body + short zoom at $40 and the big zoom at 40 and see if there's action. ebay auction prices itself.

I did a "just in case" bid on an MX yesterday at just $25. That MX ultimately sold at about $80

A difference......There's folks LOOKING for an MX or a KX or a PZ1.....nobody really is looking for a ZX10. Same with zooms. I had to try several times to get an SP 60-300 Tamron, but there's " No Name" lenses that can be had at $8 + ship.

A cheap thing for a student would be to pick up one of the branded Sears bodies with whatever lenses come along. Most Sears cameras are Ricoh or Chinon...and at half price. Budget primes are often pretty decent.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 09-14-2009, 05:08 PM  
Un-coated Takumar Lenses
Posted By Ron Redwood
Replies: 40
Views: 5,356
Not everyone is shooting digital. My SMC 135 is one of my main macro's,I use it,or a Novoflex 100 as my main bellows lenses,and on the auto bellows or tubes the 135 is extra nice. I'd shot a lot with older glass,even a funky little Zeiss Tessar and an Asunama 199,single coat, and the SMC helps. i'd often used a hood and polarizer,so unwanted flare,saturation were somewhat manageable but .....I dunno...I just LIKE that SMC 135. I use it on my 42 bodies mainly,but have adaptered the bellows outfit onto K bodies also. For "medium macro" I have a 100 4.0 Macro Tak in K mount,and the handy SP 35-80 Tamron. Shooting on a M42 body,Pre-Set or non auto is a pain...but if adaptered to a DSLR...Preset can be a plus.

Old the old German glass, can have "quirks" that are not "accurate" but have charachter,this kind of makes for a "niche" appeal. So does price. The early Tak's are NOT what I'd prefer for general use,and a "student",even using a M42 body is better off picking up some glass on ebay.

Digi adapt? Well.....that's different. With some fancy zooms goint at $400-$1000,I could see a shooter picking up a batch of old M42 stuff at $10-50 a lens just to get some "fresh" approach.

Nesster's Steetlamp shot is a great example as it's the flare that's the whole soul of the shot. I'd doubt some modern kit lens could make a simple shot like that be special. Light...not what the camera really sees and yet that's underappreciated by average photographers.

I used to enjoy a 400 slide film marketed as Focal ( K Mart)...real grainy with deep but not bright color. My 300 4.0 Siggy has a "macro" ring that does allow closer focus...but is almost an adjustable soft focus...the combo got pics that had sort of a French Impressionist feel,in how the light and grain and color renditions were a bit mutated. On Macro tubes the 300 got even more "peculiar"
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 09-14-2009, 04:07 PM  
Best film camera for a starter
Posted By Ron Redwood
Replies: 37
Views: 9,168
I do a lot of buy + sell. My "keepers" are a ZX-5,a Chinon CP 6 and Mamiya (M42) DSX 1000 + DTL 1000. The common thead is they all spot meter and none needs the costly lithium batteries.

My ZX5 came with the optional battery pack, which lets it use 4 AA's ( Alky or MiMh).The Chinon uses 3 AAA's stock. It's a MF body,does spot,avg and a mix of both. No built in winder or flash but does Multi Exposure. Chinon's use basic K mount. Chinon CP 5S is the same as CP 6 but no DX code read. CP 7 is also nice, no spot meter but has winder.

ZX-5 or 5N will have the retro Shutter Speed Dial.....which I think is a major plus,TTL pop up flash,will happily use all lenses in the K family.
The ZX-5N tends to cost quite a bit more than the 5...and the main difference is the N has DOF preview. The odd thing is the spring that holds up the flash on a ZX5 usually is busted and you need to use a spare finger to hold it up,or micey mouse a basic spring. The PZ 1 or 1 P will cost way more than a ZX 5...and there's no easy to find AA battery option. PZ-1,ZX5 + SF-1 all have built in diopter slider-a plus if you wear glasses.

A negative with the ZX 5 is that the viewfinder info,while detailed,is hard to see on a real sunny day. The viewfinder is where the SF-1 is very impressive. It just seems big and bright. There is a AA battery holder for SF but it's scarce relative to the ZX/MZ unit. The SF-1 is quite a nice camera,and goes rather cheap....prices similar to the middle of the pack gear from later lines. Think of it as like a Super Prog with the winder and flash built in and a few more goodies.

Mostly, I use lenses that are Tamron or YS mount Sigmas. All those work fine with the M42 or PK mounts. My AF lens,a a "niche" thing...prefer my SP Tamron man focus,and various primes.

Worth note the P3 is a nice and durable "old school" in that it's shutter dial,not buttons. It lacks the TTL flash option of a Super Prog,but has a much better viewfinder. The Super Prog LCD finder is a bit tricky in poor light and with the info at the screen bottom, you'll have trouble seeing it with glasses. If the finder was like an ME-Super or a would have been great.

My experience is I had some ME-Supers that have troubles, but every P3 or P3n I've had was 100% working. While it replaced the K1000 as the "student" camera in the lineup, the ZXM or MZ-M is more like a P3N with built in winder and the ZX body style. The P3's uses the button batteries, the ZX's use Lithiums or the add on battery pack F. The Batt Pack adds a bit to the size/weight,otherwise a ZX-M is very light.
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 09-13-2009, 11:18 AM  
Which Pentax camera film should I buy ?
Posted By Ron Redwood
Replies: 18
Views: 5,196
I have not got my mitts on a PZ 1p yet...they are sweet. Bang for the buck....ZX5. I LOVE the retro shutter speed dial + spot meter. The chronic with these is the spring on the pop up flash tends to fail. I have a good one...but have sold 3 that needed a finger to hold up the flash. The info in the viewfinder is hard to see in bright light. I prefer the SF-1 of the best. Like the ZX5,the SF-1 has diopter adjust built in,a plus as I get to shoot without glasses.

The ZX=S costs a LOT on much as an LX. You can get a PZ-1 or 1P at a decent price or a ZX-5n....but the ZX-5 and SF-1 go surprisingly cheap at times. A sleeper is the PZ10. One of the easiest to use point+shoot,works well with the FA power zoom features, In manual,is spot meter.

I am not big on AF. I have a Chinon CP6 I like.....takes K lenses,spot meters,multi exposure, runs on AAA nimh. My ZX5 has the battery pack F that takes 4 AA's. These save $ over using the lithiums. There was a Batt holder for the SF's but good luck finding one. The AA pack for Zx/Mz is not hard to get.

Chinon's CP5s,CP6,Cp7m are stock with AA or AAA grip. They do Prog mode on a plain K mount. The CP7 or CP7m has winder. The CP 5s and CP6 do not,but offer spot meter. My wish would be a CP6 with TTL flash ability. The Pentax P3N would have rated higher with TTL. I don't LIKE to fuss with manual flash,always was more into fast primes and available light. I don't like $15 Lithium batteries and I need spot meter.

I still have love for my screw mt Mamiyas. Unlike the Spotmatic,the DTL +DSX have spot meter. They are a bit heavy but you have to get sadistic to bust one. Old School steel and will shoot with no battery.
My DTL 1000 in spot meter with the Sigma 135 1.8 has been THE sweet set for "concert" shots,stage lighting. I also bring the Sigma 300 4.0,and It's interesting that the old style center needle meter in spot is THE killer for shooting in that situation. Screw lenses need no red dot to swap lenses. Center needle+spot lets you scan the scene and see the relative light values. Very efficient.

You can get a Mamiya DTL 1000 dirt cheap. The Mamiya glass is very good,but in M42,there is also the SMC Takumar line I have an SMC Tak 135 and a Novoflex 100mm I favor as macro on the bellows. They are just NASTY sharp. The SMC 135 can use the plus of auto tubes or the auto bellows.

The YS mount for my old Sigmas is interesting. Unlike a Tamron adapter,the YS lens base was a M42 screw thread. THUS.....the YS PK adapter makes any M42 act like a K mount...and that includes a rig with M42 auto tubes or auto bellows.

For whatever reason,my Chinon CP-6 tends to jam with the YS adapter but the ZX 5 does fine. This is good it I'm doing macro and want to get the + of TTL flash
I have a slave and 283 vivitar. Engage the ZX5's pop up an the TTL is gonna see the total even if the bellows somewhat messes with the on camera pp up up,the slaved Vivi gets to act like TTL. It's a rather odd mix but workable.

Anyhow.....I am pleased with the ZX-5,and I do like Chinons and,in M42,Mamiyas.
In M42 Mamiya and Chinon had some major advantages on Pentax. Chinon had bodies that did Aperture priority+full aperture meter. Mamiya liked spot meter and some did full aperture with some lenses.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 09-13-2009, 10:05 AM  
Pentax FA 28-80 F3.5
Posted By Ron Redwood
Replies: 15
Views: 11,650
interesting. At the moment I have one of these,in good shape with the power zoom thing good,a silver 28-90 FA,and a 28-80 F. One is the keeper for my ZX5,the other 2 get matched to an SF-1 and a PZ10 and re-sold. I see a LOT of disagreement over these....

I have a manual Tamron SP 35-80 I think is better optically,much better macro,and I'm no big fan of AF,but wanted to hang on to one AF lens. I think I may just match the lenses and Cams by vintage. For my use,the lightweight 28-90 should suffice. The Power zoom stuff works well with the PZ10...boosts it's resell. I suspect the F lens s the best build. The 35-70 was the cheaper kit lens of that era.

I have not shot with any bot the F lens. It's good. Not dazzling.
Forum: Pentax Camera and Field Accessories 07-10-2009, 11:49 PM  
Monopods...worth it?
Posted By Ron Redwood
Replies: 49
Views: 16,849
I did finally get a nice (and low $) mono in part to deal with a 500 f8 Mirror tele I'd scored. It worked and was a bit more flexible/compact /taller than my tri.

For my 300 4.0 tele or 60-300,I found I'd sooner hand hold,though SOME situations..maybe I WANT to shoot a slower film,smaller aperture. My main Tri was bought to be light and mobile...but...fact is it stays home usually. The Mono is less fuss.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 07-10-2009, 11:38 PM  
PKA AUTO FOCUS extension tubes ?
Posted By Ron Redwood
Replies: 16
Views: 5,938
A pleasant part of you can do VERY well with "Old School". You don't WANT to hurry..or be noisy..or fuss about with modes and buttons and such. BASIC is the zen. You can study the options for 10 min before popping a shot.

I have a Minolta X 700+ Novoflex Auto Bellows + Novoflexar 100mm bellows lens.....THAT rig can do shots

My M42 baby is a Mamiya DTL with spot meter. I have 2 sets of tubes and an auto bellows,a SMC Pentax Tak 135,a Novoflexar 105mm,A Mamiya 50 1.4, a Bigass 300 4.0 Sigma.....all work fine on the M42 with tubes or bellows. using the Pentax 100 4.0 Macro K Mt on the Chinon (also spotmeter) or the ZX 5 Pentax...which ...having TTL flas (pop) lets me slave up the big Vivitar on a bracket for some "fancy" flash tricks.

the Tamron SP 35-80 zoom has about the best macro of any zoom....versatile.

Being various "Pentax Mounts" I reckon any of that can do well on a K10/K20,but's hard to beat the trusty old Mamiya for Macros.

The FUNNY can get a Mamiya+Tubes+Bellows+cable release+a couple of NICE lenses....for about $100......which is cheaper than autofocus tubes alone. can hunt down a Tamron 90 2.5 macro SP,and the SP 2x and that gets GREAT 1:1 mac (at 180mm)...adapts to various mounts.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 07-10-2009, 11:12 PM  
PKA AUTO FOCUS extension tubes ?
Posted By Ron Redwood
Replies: 16
Views: 5,938
Agree.....actually,even the "A" is a bit unneeded. I use my M42 tubes /bellows on my K mount Pentax or Chinon and intend to shoot full manual usually (though Aperture Priority works well. Don't WANT Prog modes in Macro. Tight focus by leaning IN and BACK mostly.
Forum: Pentax Camera and Field Accessories 07-10-2009, 10:57 PM  
Tripods--out of the mouths of husbands...
Posted By Ron Redwood
Replies: 41
Views: 6,302
About 30 years ago I bought "The Best ratchet Wrench" because car repair has enough frustrations....I still have it and it's still the best...but not made any more.

A bit later,got a LIGHT and basic Slik tripod.....still is quite fine. I wanted light,mobile,stable,affordable and it is still all that. Had a bigger/fancier tripod...too much to tote and fuss with...sold it.

I have often skipped the pod,put a sweater on a rock or post for support. If I was doing LONG Tele much......then I'd need a bigger pod.
Forum: Pentax Camera and Field Accessories 07-10-2009, 10:36 PM  
Backpack insert?
Posted By Ron Redwood
Replies: 10
Views: 9,518
Camera bags without the strap?

I have an insulated "Lunch bag" that works great. For cold beer or a camera + zoom.

I have a jansport backpack with good straps..and wheels+handle,lots of compartments. For "expeditions" where I may want to bring a lot of gear,a couple of cold beers,a sweater,a burrito and a dozen choc chip cookies (basic kit) it works PERFECT. I have camera bags,lens pouches that fit in. Often I can roll it rather than have it on my shoulder. Very versatile. Can carry the monopod...even can bungee a lawn chair to it. (For bluegrass festivals)
Forum: Photographic Technique 07-10-2009, 04:40 AM  
A rant from an old fart photographer.
Posted By Ron Redwood
Replies: 38
Views: 6,679
Most of my best shots were with good old M42 gear. Manual focus? Hell I wasn't using a zoom until the last few years. I did a lot of macro,a lot of Live Concert/available light,a lot of landscape/seascape. I found the simplicity a plus, Now I have quite a few cameras about..including Auto Everything stuff,and for most things I still favor manual focus and a manual camera with spot metering.

I regret Kodachrome is gone.

If I was doing lots of sports..I'd probably favor AF. As is....I sold my 70-200 AF because I prefer a few non AF's that cover that range. I do have a "modern" 35 mm with lots of "auto" but I shoot better with the more basic gear where things are intuitive and seamless.

It's really not the's the light.
Forum: Digital Processing, Software, and Printing 07-10-2009, 03:33 AM  
Panorama question
Posted By Ron Redwood
Replies: 9
Views: 2,577
The ZX 5 definitely has a switch in back that will do the panorama appears the MZ 7 does too so...I'd guess the lab saw they were shot as panorama and printed them as such. They won't generally take normal frame negs and do pano prints.

You DO see the pano crop in the viewfinder shooting but maybe someone wasn't used to the camera enough to notice.
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 07-04-2009, 05:06 PM  
Pentax Z-10/PZ-10
Posted By Ron Redwood
Replies: 1
Views: 31,484
i got my housemate a PZ-10. It's a camera that can do some rather "high end" stuff,yet is ,if you want,a VERY easy camera to use.

No spot meter or DOF,but a big bright viewfinder and all the auto features. A rather large body,but easy to hold and not heavy. Feels pretty solid. They seem to have sold well and can be had rather cheap. Makes a nice backup or a camera for the "easy technology" shooter who's usually doing auto modes.
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 07-04-2009, 04:48 PM  
Pentax MZ-5/ZX-5
Posted By Ron Redwood
Replies: 2
Views: 24,481
The ZX-5 packed a lot of sweet stuff into a rather compact body. There's the typical 90's era AF/winder/multi program/pop up TTL flash built in and like it's rivals the body is plastic,ergonomic,fairly light.

The NEAT stuff? The ZX-5's retro shutter speed dial was brilliant and also simplified chosing modes. You can set the shutter or aperture or both to A...or neither.

The ZX-5 has spot meter,has multi-exposure,has built in diopter adjust...all very important to me. It can be had with a power pack/vert grip that lets it use 4 AA's...NIMH works great. The little flash is very auto,and it's easy to slave my 283 Vivitar when I need the extra lighting. Like every Pentax,it's happy to use older glass. I don't much LIKE usually it's using "A","K" or M42 glass.

The flaws? Most obvious is the chronic matter of the spring on the pop up flash.
Of the units for sale,at least half seem to have a busted spring,so you need to use a spare finger to hold the flash up. I did,eventually,get one that,so far,has a good spring. The viewfinder display almost is invisible in strong light. It tried to be detailed,but went too far. The SF-1 had a much better finder.

The ZX-5n added depth of field preview. Given all the features on the ZX-5,it's odd that wasn't on the original. now, that minor detail meals a used "n" goes for quite a bit higher $.

The ZX-5 gets points for sheer bang for the buck. While a PZ-1 has some advantages,so does the ZX-5...and at less $ typically.
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 07-04-2009, 04:00 PM  
Pentax Super A/Super Program
Posted By Ron Redwood
Replies: 13
Views: 62,545
The big plus of the Super Program is TTL flash. The big negative is that I find the LCD viewfinder difficult. In weak light you need the illumination button..which give barely enough backlight. The real thing..I wear glasses and the LCD is so located that I have trouble seeing the full display and when I can the LCD numbers are blocky and take getting used to. The P3n went back to a shutter dial. The ME Super was a bit smaller-with a nice viewfinder (LED)..but neither had TTL flash.
If the P3n had TTL and spot could have been a terrific camera. Pentax later did put everything togather with the ZX5n....though the viewfinder again was difficult.

For flash..if you don't wear glasses...the Super Prog is quite solid.
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 07-03-2009, 01:28 AM  
Favorite Older Film Camera?
Posted By Ron Redwood
Replies: 241
Views: 33,320
Only rifle I ever had was alever Winchester. I can relate. never ever shot anything but loved that mechanism.

i love the Pentax concept ..but Mamiya,Chinon,Fujica had better M42 bodies. Chinon and Ricoh were more creative with basic K muunt
Forum: Photographic Technique 07-03-2009, 01:03 AM  
good deal or not?
Posted By Ron Redwood
Replies: 11
Views: 4,356
well..maybe not quite 4x but more than your total
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