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Forum: Non-Pentax Cameras: Canon, Nikon, etc. 4 Days Ago  
Sony A7r4 announced. 61mp.
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 149
Views: 3,637
They're all aimed at hobbyists - not enough pros to justify development expenses. BUT - get some pros to use such a model and it draws many hobbyists to the brand.
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 07-10-2019, 04:47 AM  
MX shutter button won't fully depress
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 8
Views: 337
Agree - that explains it. Opening the back before reset the counter, so you didn't know when you reached the end of the roll. I shot a roll of Arista 100 in my MX last week, and also found the shutter locked at frame 28. I hadn't realized I loaded a 24 exposure roll, which was long enough to get 27 frames (including frame 0), and ALMOST 28. But the film ending stops the last frame from fully cocking the shutter, so it won't fire.
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 07-09-2019, 04:31 PM  
Post your B&W Film shots
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 8,483
Views: 880,912
We used sliderules for engineering studies, when there were no personal calculators, and there was one digital computer on campus (in administration). We also used analog computers for some simulations, and had to write one FORTRAN program and punch the card deck and turn it in to have it run. Then they got s new computer and all had to be done in FORTRAN 4 instead.
Continued using a slide rule for many years after as an engineer before electronic calculators appeared.
I retired as a programmer...
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 06-24-2019, 01:33 PM  
The Light Seal Project...
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 15
Views: 822
Thanks for posting Jon, your kits have helped many cameras in my collection.
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 06-12-2019, 04:08 AM  
Ghastly foam.....
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 4
Views: 710
I have a KX with de-silvering of the prism, which I suspect is caused by foam. I've found foam to do this on some Canon and even Leicaflex SL, so its clear the industry wasn't aware of this characteristic back then.
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 06-07-2019, 05:36 AM  
Gear P0rn - post it if you got it.
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 6,163
Views: 747,359
I've always preferred chrome cameras to black.
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 05-26-2019, 06:04 PM  
Gear P0rn - post it if you got it.
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 6,163
Views: 747,359
Keep an eye out for a Leicaflex SL2. It adds a split-image spot as well as microprism in the finder, more sensitive meter, and other refinements, but keeps all the good of the SL.
These models are a bargain now as are the common 70s lenses for them. Some of the more exotic later lenses are now really high, but a kit of the older lenses is reasonable.
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 05-16-2019, 12:36 AM  
Gear P0rn - post it if you got it.
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 6,163
Views: 747,359
I bought my Leicaflex SL in 1968, trading a couple Canon SLRs & lenses toward it. Not only looks good, but solid as a tank. Still use mine.
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 05-02-2019, 02:02 PM  
S1a advice
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 12
Views: 561
The S1a is one of my favorite cameras - it was my first SLR in 1965. Any you buy now is likely to need at least a service, so consider that when looking at the price. If the total cost of the camera (including the service) is worth it to you, considering the condition and how you feel about the camera, don’t worry too much about what others say about the price. I’ve passed on some nice cameras and kicked myself later.
Forum: Film Processing, Scanning, and Darkroom 05-02-2019, 11:15 AM  
Ilford Fp4plus 'spotting' on negatives
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 55
Views: 2,086
I assume the “spotting” you are seeing is the lighter dots on the prints. That, of course, would be dark dots on the negative. This would seem to rule out bubbles and such causing under-development, as that would cause lighter spots on the negative and darker on the print. The lighter dots would be consistent with dust or other specs of foreign matter on the negative, but they aren’t opaque, or pure white as you see grain texture in them, and they are only slightly lighter than the underlying image. Perhaps it is uneven clumps in the emulsion itself. As I recall, FP4+ combines two types of grain structures to give wide latitude, so perhaps it is more susceptible to such issues than simpler coatings.
Forum: Film Processing, Scanning, and Darkroom 04-29-2019, 05:06 PM  
ADOX Neutol Eco for film
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 4
Views: 397
Around 1957 I developed both film and prints in Dektol, but my memory is about as hazy now as those prints were...
Forum: Film Processing, Scanning, and Darkroom 04-28-2019, 02:47 PM  
Ilford Fp4plus 'spotting' on negatives
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 55
Views: 2,086
50 years ago when processing at least a few rolls a week, I used both UFG and Acufine, with their replenishers. You would mix a qt. of developer and a qt. of replenisher, and add a small amount of replenisher after each roll of film to make up for lost volume. Developing times stayed constant, and I’d often use the developer until the replenisher was gone.
But very few folk develop enough to make that work now. Within the last decade you could still get Acufine replenisher, but since the product line moved to a new company it seems only the developer is available.
Now I use only 1-shot - normally either Rodinal or DD-X.
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 04-24-2019, 03:01 PM  
Ektachrome is back!
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 150
Views: 9,096
Agreed - I had frozen some E100G from the last batch, so thawed a roll and shot it in one camera and new E100 in another. Results were quite similar. In sunlight shooting spring wildflowers the old E100G seemed to have a bit more “snap” or contrast, but both were very nice. With indoor mixed lighting (daylight LEDs, window light, some bright white LEDs) the new E100 handled it better, and portraits looked more natural.
I always preferred the results on Kodachrome II, but the new E100 is very nice.
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 04-21-2019, 09:39 AM  
Post your B&W Film shots
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 8,483
Views: 880,912
I shoot a lot of test films to check out cameras in my collection, either new ones or one I haven't used in a while before trusting it. In recent years I've used Ilford films almost exclusively, instead of Kodak that I used decades ago. This is largely because I find Kodak films (esp TriX) tend to curl so much it affects the scan sharpness on my glassless Epson V700 carriers, while Ilford tends to lie flatter after drying, while I would weight TriX under books for a few days to get good results.
However, since these test rolls are just "tests" and not for show, the cost of film in my retirement years is a bit of an issue. So when I noticed how much cheaper Freestyle's Arista films are I decided to try a bulk roll of their 400 speed. (Which seems to be Fomopan film.) After trying a few loads I'm quite impressed, especially for the price. I find the 400 speed does better when shot at 320 EI and processed normally. I've used both DD-X and Rodinal, and while DD-X minimizes grain, I like the tonality (and cost!) in Rodinal.
What I really like is that the film lies totally flat immediately after drying. So I can batch scan a roll within an hour of starting processing.
This is shot at 320 and developed in Rodinal 1+25, 4m 20s @ 73F. Just a default scan on an Epson V850, Epson scan, no adjustments except downsizing:
Attachment 449093
Forum: Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 04-20-2019, 08:05 AM  
Pentax MX: Cannot rewind film
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 2
Views: 380
I find the MX no different from the other 20 or so film cameras in my collection. Rewind button very easy to press, and rewind crank also easy. I’ve used 2 of my MXs this month.
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 04-19-2019, 11:23 AM  
Gear P0rn - post it if you got it.
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 6,163
Views: 747,359
The FED bodies didn't control the flange to film-plane distance accurately, so it was common that their 50mm f3.5 lenses were individually matched to each body before sale so the rangefinder would be accurate. So even mixing lenses between FED bodies isn't wise. However the lens cam can be reworked to work in many cases. I have a 1950s FED that came to me paired with a pre-war "FED" lens that was way off, until both were serviced by a Leica tech. However, lens focus is still off if tried on a Leica, as mentioned by Steve.
While the FED I was a fairly close copy of the 1932 Leica II, the quality control was... at least mixed.
I've had various Industar lenses that were quite far off on Leica bodies, but on a matched FED or Zorki body did OK.
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 04-19-2019, 06:21 AM  
Gear P0rn - post it if you got it.
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 6,163
Views: 747,359
At the 1968 Democratic convention David Douglas Duncan got many spectacular “head shots” of Hubert Humphrey and others using a LeicaflexSL and 400mm f6.8 Telyt lens, hand-held in the convention center. These were tack-sharp, even printed 16x20. He said he exposed Tri-x at 1/125 and f6.8 - but the indoor lighting was bright for the TV cameras of the time. I have one of those Telyt lenses, and use with its included shoulder stock - but Duncan didn’t use the stock. The lens is long, but light, with a “trombone” focus.
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 04-18-2019, 06:25 AM  
Blue haze on landscape shots - help?
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 22
Views: 1,356
The shots look pretty normal for many film types and older lenses. There is some light scattering in the atmosphere which reduces contrast - so this effect increases with distance. In one way it separates the foreground. Some films are more sensitive to UV, and older lenses don’t use UV absorbing glues between cemented elements like modern lenses do, so using a UVa filter instead of Skylight might help. When working with scanned images increasing the contrast a bit can help also.
What film were you using? Kodak Ektar is a higher contrast film that is good for landscapes.
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 04-16-2019, 06:41 AM  
Things to Check on an LX
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 2
Views: 481
Make sure the focus is accurate, as a sagging mirror stop will make the VF focus different than film focus. Happened to mine years ago.
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 04-14-2019, 04:53 PM  
I got an MX and the shutter sounds like a beast. Is this normal?
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 8
Views: 664
I have a few MXs in my collection, and they are pretty loud compared to many, but it’s more the character of the sound as the mirror clatters down after the shutter closes. Pentax made strong claims about the mirror damping as it rises, so it doesn’t add to vibration affecting the sharpness, but it does slam down after the shot.
I just shot a roll on an MX trying a different film, and I was again impressed with the good exposures and sharpness of the 50 f1.7 M lens. I have noticed with this one that sometimes (rarely) the mirror stop leaves the mirror in the wrong position so the next shot focus is way off. My other MXs don’t do this.
I like the size and handling of the MX, but the noise isn’t subtle.
Forum: Film Processing, Scanning, and Darkroom 04-11-2019, 11:25 AM  
Ilford Fp4plus 'spotting' on negatives
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 55
Views: 2,086
I'd second the suggestion on the fixer as I've experienced the precipitate a few times over the years - sometimes coating the bottom of the bottle quite heavily so it breaks off in chunks. Try a fresh mix of fixer.
Forum: Film Processing, Scanning, and Darkroom 04-08-2019, 05:10 AM  
Film changing bag (darkroom bag? darkbag?)
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 14
Views: 748
I’ve found loading 120 onto Hewes stainless reels is quite easy in a changing bag, although Jobo or Paterson type plastic are simpler.
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 04-06-2019, 03:55 AM  
Spotmatic SP2 and SP1000 light meter & ASA
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 4
Views: 509
These older cameras used CdS cells for light measurement, which have a "memory" effect to light. when the light changes (even when the aperture changes for meter reading from being wide open for focusing) it takes the cell a while to adapt. The greater the light change, the longer it takes.
CdS cells also degrade with moisture penetration into the cell, which is common on old cameras. This mainly affects the maximum resistance (dark conditions), so the meter is no longer linear - it may read correctly in brighter light, but be way off in dim light, even after a tech adjusts the circuit.
The moisture penetration problem doesn't always happen, so two cameras of equal age, kept under the same conditions, may vary a lot.
CdS cell replacement is a normal part of service on old cameras - if parts are available. Availability for common Pentax models has been good, while for cameras with very special cell designs (several Leica models) techs just do the best they can to modify the circuits.
Later Pentax models used different types of meter cells at least by the ME-MX and later.
Forum: Film Processing, Scanning, and Darkroom 04-04-2019, 08:05 AM  
Film changing bag (darkroom bag? darkbag?)
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 14
Views: 748
A bag big enough to have a camera inside is a plus. Last week I used a Pentax reloadable cassette in a Leica M5, which has the rewind crank on the bottom (as do the Minolta CLE and Zeiss Ikon ZM). That means the crank drives the bottom of the film spool. But the Pentax cassette (at least this one) didn't have a cross-web in that end of the spool for the rewind to engage, so the crank just spun freely.
So I put the camera in my changing bag, removed the bottom cover, and used my fingertips to rotate the cassette spool while urging the film across the rails through the open back flap on the Leica. Wore out my fingertips, but got it rewound, and the film turned out fine.
Forum: Film Processing, Scanning, and Darkroom 03-30-2019, 03:23 PM  
Film changing bag (darkroom bag? darkbag?)
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 14
Views: 748
I’ve used changing bags on & off for 50 years when between darkrooms, and while I prefer a darkroom, a roomy bag works fine. While I have Paterson & Jobo tanks, I find stainless reels easier and faster, especially for 35mm.
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