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Forum: Non-Pentax Cameras: Canon, Nikon, etc. 1 Day Ago  
Help! I thought about buying a (film) Leica!
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 10
Views: 263
Both the Canon 7 (or 7s) and Canon P have very usable range/viewfinders, but the rangefinders can’t compare to the Leica M for a crisp focus patch. The Zeiss Ikon ZM (made in the early 2000s) has even a better one than Leica. The Voigtlander lenses are economical compared to Leica, and many are great to use, if not quite up to Leica optics. A Leica M2 with a Voigtlander 35 Norton 1.4 is a good way to try the experience.
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 1 Day Ago  
Ektachrome is back!
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 47
Views: 1,553
I believe Kodak set up a new small volume line for Ektachrome, so production issues might be expected. No doubt they were concerned about sales volume, and didn’t want to over commit or over produce. Once the initial rush is over they’ll have a better feel for planning production.
Forum: Non-Pentax Cameras: Canon, Nikon, etc. 2 Days Ago  
Help! I thought about buying a (film) Leica!
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 10
Views: 263
Leica mechanical feel is seductive. In the 1960s I went from an H1a to a Canon FT (for the mount and meter), to a Leica M4 because of issues with the Canon. Then I traded in all my Canons towards a Leicaflex SL to go along with the M4. Some years later when the MX came out it became my carry around camera. I later added an LX and some other Leicas, but the Leica M and MX are still my favorites. The MX actually feels much smaller than a Leica M, so use yours and enjoy it!
Forum: Non-Pentax Cameras: Canon, Nikon, etc. 4 Days Ago  
Thrift Store - Leitz Wentzlar Summicron 50mm -
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 8
Views: 275
I can't tell as you don't show a shot of the top of the lens (flat surface near the mount), but it is probably just shifted to the close focus range, where it won't allow the focus to turn without the adapter ("goggles") in place. If so, there will be a tab on the focus ring positioned like this:
Attachment 427239
and it needs to be shifted to the normal focus range. To do so pull the focus ring out away from the lens mount so the tab can slip past the stop block:
Attachment 427240
And then it should turn freely in the normal focus range:
Attachment 427241
This was one of the best 50mm lenses of the 1950s, and still performs well on digital. In good shape they usually sell for $1K or more.
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 10-12-2018, 10:06 AM  
Ektachrome is back!
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 47
Views: 1,553
Received my Ektachrome order from Freestyle today. 2-year shelf life. Time to give it a good try!
Forum: Non-Pentax Cameras: Canon, Nikon, etc. 10-02-2018, 02:28 PM  
New Zenit M camera based on Leica M (Type 240) was announced in Russia
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 22
Views: 426
It's been suggested that Leica had a lot (500?) sub-assemblies for the M240 that were useless once the M10 came out. Perhaps there's a motive there somewhere?
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 10-02-2018, 02:24 PM  
Consider Getting an LX, and Have Some Questions
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 19
Views: 818
I've bought a lot from KEH, and agree their grading is generally conservative - compared to eBay sellers. I have bought an "ugly" lens for parts that was better than the "Bargain" bought earlier that I was working on. I've also bought "Excellent" times that weren't as nice as some "Bargain". But in any case their return policy is excellent.
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 09-29-2018, 06:26 AM  
Ektachrome is back!
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 47
Views: 1,553
I refurbed my Leitz projector a few years ago (new belts, etc), but my screen may be gone.
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 09-25-2018, 04:30 PM  
Ektachrome is back!
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 47
Views: 1,553
Due at Freestyle mid Oct - I have some on order.
Forum: Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 09-23-2018, 10:43 AM  
Help me identify these Pentax models!
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 17
Views: 838
You are right - that and the case rides farther out from the man’s body. A Leica would be quite flat, while the Bolsey had a trapezoid shape with a deep back.
Forum: Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 09-23-2018, 09:40 AM  
Help me identify these Pentax models!
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 17
Views: 838
The second photo of the closed case is probably a screw mount Leica with collapsible lens, given the very short lens nose on the case. The shape is certainly right for a Leica from the 1920s into the 1950s, when Leica was among the most popular good camera. The rounded case ends show it isn’t a Canon RF, and while there were other copies of the Leica in the 50s, his Contaflex would be consistent with a German camera.
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 09-14-2018, 08:14 AM  
Concert tonight, Tri-X... what EI?
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 33
Views: 874
The Canon QL (Quick Load) system used on the Pellix QL and FT-QL (and others) in the mid 1960s was like that, but manual wind. The take-up spool had 3 spring-loaded arms with rubber grippers. You laid the film leader over the spool, and as you closed the back another flap held it in place, Then just advance to the first shot. I had an FT-QL about 1966. Very nice loading system (and nice camera).
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 09-13-2018, 04:35 PM  
Concert tonight, Tri-X... what EI?
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 33
Views: 874
The famous Leica M3, M2 (and earlier) required you to remove the camera bottom plate, pull out the film take-up spool. Insert the film leader (aligned carefully) under a spring clip, then pull out enough film to simultaneously insert both the cassette and take-up spool into their chambers through the camera bottom, install the bottom plate and lock it in place.
Canon rangefinders before about 1955 were the same, but went to back loading in the late 1950s.
Leica still required removing and threading the take-up spool until the M4 in about 1968, and you still have to load through the bottom even with the film cameras made now.
(And even the latest M10 digital removes the bottom plate to change the SD card.)
Forum: Non-Pentax Cameras: Canon, Nikon, etc. 09-12-2018, 10:27 AM  
What is it? Mystery item...old Leica lens adapter viewfinder thing...
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 8
Views: 375
Leitz sold reflex housings for Leicas back at least to 1935, even pre-dating the Exakta 35 mm, so in a sense Leica had the first 35mm SLR!
I've used a Visoflex III (pictured above is a II) for decades, usually with bellows and macro lenses, but also for a 200mm lens. I also inherited a German 3rd party 400mm lens for old Leicas that has a similar reflex housing built in. Of course, no automatic diaphragm with these, but a lot of good nature pictures were taken with them and published before SLRs came to dominate. I've even use the Visoflex III on a digital Leica M9 for macro use, and it does a great job, if not too convenient.
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 09-10-2018, 05:38 AM  
Fuji Film to be Discontinued
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 43
Views: 2,878
As I recall, the 3-M films were actually made by Ferrania in Italy. A group is now trying to re-start film production there. FILM Ferrania
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 09-10-2018, 05:35 AM  
I bought an LX
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 75
Views: 4,359
I have most of the SMC - M & K "normal" lenses: f 1.2, 1.4, 1.7, & 2.0. For the characteristics I value the 1.7 is the best performer. In correcting the faster lenses for edge performance there results an "unsharp zone" about midway between center and corner that is obvious in landscapes and such. You can see this dip in the MTF charts of the lenses. If you shoot mainly portraits and centered subjects you may prefer this effect, but I find it disturbing.
I've found the same thing in Canon, Nikon, and even Leica lenses; that the 1.4 models (non-asph versions) start to show less sharpness across the field than their best 1.8-2.0 lenses, although they may be fine in the center and have other characteristics that are outstanding. but on all these brands I went back to the slower lenses.
One lens you might like on your LX is the SMC-A 50 2.8 macro lens: good bokeh (smooth character, but not the pronounced blur of a faster lens) and overall good performance. I use it a lot on full-frame digital.
Forum: Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 09-03-2018, 04:30 PM  
Canon FL 200mm f/3.5 on a K-5
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 3
Views: 401
I used a 200 FL on a Canon FT for sports in college in the 1960s, and it was pretty good optically. However, the auto diaphragm was a bit slow to close, so with small lens openings and fast shutter, one side of the photo would be over exposed. My 50 1.4 FL had the same problem. That’s why I traded them towards a Leicaflex SL as I left college.
A few years ago I bid on and won the same Canon set (FT, 200 f4, 50 f1.4), and they had the same slow diaphragm problem. I did my own CLA and used a dry lube on the mechanisms, and that cured the issue. Now it’s a nice set.
Forum: Film Processing, Scanning, and Darkroom 09-02-2018, 03:35 PM  
What is your favirte film emulsion?
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 24
Views: 706
B&W: PanF+ (Delta 400 for low light)
Color: Ektar or Portra depending on subject. (Waiting impatiently for the new Ektachrome)
Forum: Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 08-30-2018, 07:44 AM  
Pentax vs Nikon vs Canon
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 47
Views: 2,002
Back in the 1950s & 60s Pentax was a very popular camera, making SLRs before Nikon or Canon. Pentax was aimed at the amateur photographer as a mid-priced high volume camera. Many brands copied features introduced by Pentax. Even the Beatles used Pentax cameras (Ringo was a proficient photographer). Nikon aimed more at professional photographers from the start. Canon made cameras before either Nikon or Pentax, and in the 1950s their rangefinder models were very popular. Canon always had a model range covering all levels of photographers. Both Nikon and Canon introduced their first SLR models in 1959, with Nikon focused on a single professional system, and Canon trying to offer a range for everyone. Then Nikon owned the pro market, and it took Canon decades to become a big player with the pros.
Nikon remains mainly a camera company, while Canon & Ricoh are much more diversified.
Forum: Non-Pentax Cameras: Canon, Nikon, etc. 08-28-2018, 03:02 PM  
Shooting with Vintage cameras [sarcasm]
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 15
Views: 710
That used to be a requirement for grey-market imports, brought into the US by someone other than the US trademark holder. All US registered trademarks had to be obliterated. Probably at that time Honeywell held the assignment of the trademarks. If an item was sent in by mail, the post office would not release the item until the recipient removed such trademarks. I’ve even seen Leica items so defaced.
Forum: Non-Pentax Cameras: Canon, Nikon, etc. 08-24-2018, 04:36 AM  
Nikon Z6 What did they get right/wrong?
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 121
Views: 2,793
Glad to see their F mount adapter has a mechanical auto diaphragm stop down mechanism. That allows focusing wide open with legacy lenses. If a 3rd-party would make a K mount adapter with this feature I'd consider the Z6 instead of the A7III. I use SMC-M lenses on the A7, which means focusing at the shooting aperture, which is not ideal. Leica made a Leica R-mount adapter for the digital SL so it could use R lenses (I have several), but it does not have a mechanical diaphragm lever.
The other issue with legacy manual lenses is mechanical aperture detection, so the camera knows the shooting aperture to allow wide-open metering as well as focusing. The Nikon F mount adapter doesn't seem to have this, so it may mean stop-down metering only. However, with all the old Nikon lenses out there, maybe a 3rd party will come up with an adapter that has this also.
Of course, camera manufacturers would rather sell new lenses than make using old lenses as easy as possible, so such adapters are not their best interest.
Forum: Film Processing, Scanning, and Darkroom 08-23-2018, 09:05 AM  
Popular Science tours the Kodak factory
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 20
Views: 1,066
Very true, but for “lately” Kodak is introducing Ektachrome 100 film, and I intend to buy and shoot as much as I can. And a bit dated now, but the Leica M9 of 2009 used a Kodak sensor, and it’s the camera that made me appreciate digital. I still prefer the look of M9 images, that seem very Ektachrome-like.
Forum: Non-Pentax Cameras: Canon, Nikon, etc. 08-19-2018, 10:55 AM  
Leica doesn't exist
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 71
Views: 2,171
When I started with Leica in the 1960s, Leica basically said the different lens lines (based on speed: Elmar (f2.8 or 3.5), Summicron (f2.0), and Summilux(f1.4)) had equivalent image quality, but varied in speed, size, and cost. A 50 mm 2.8 Elmar in tiny collapsible mount cost $78, while a 50 f2 Summicron (a bit larger) was $150, and the larger 50 f1.4 Summilux cost $213.
There was also the new 50 f1.2 Noctilux (the first production lens with aspheric elements) at $678. I was offered one at that price at Altman’s Camera in Chicago, but got a Summicron instead. (Now that model Noctilux goes for around $15K used.)
In fact there were differences in performance between the various lenses, but they also had similar rendering, such that images were compatible.
The first Leica I used was a friend’s M2 with a 50 2.8 Elmar. At the time I used a Pentax H1a with 55 f2 Super Tak. The Pentax lens was at least as “sharp” as the Leica, but I found the Leica images more pleasing.
Forum: Non-Pentax Cameras: Canon, Nikon, etc. 08-11-2018, 11:15 AM  
Leica doesn't exist
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 71
Views: 2,171
Well, I have to admit that I went from Pentax to Leica in 1968, while working at a Leica dealer, and so got employee discount. Back then Leica pricing wasn’t so astronomical - as I recall an M4 wasn’t even twice the price of a Spotmatic.
Leica was the top brand with professionals through the 1950s, and was still somewhat popular in 1968, but even then was quirky and considered obsolete technology - basically a 1950s design. But, except for the early 1930s models Leica was never a technical innovator, and new models were just conservative tweaks of solid designs.
But some of us don’t care about the latest tech. I used my M4 as my main camera for a couple of decades, with the same 3 lenses I bought the first year I had it. In 1985 I added an M6 body; which was just like the M4 but added a through-the-lens light meter. I used the same 1968 lenses with it until 2010, when I used my retirement bonus to get an M9 body, which was basically just like the M6 but digital. I still used my 3 1968 lenses on it.
I had tried dSLRs, but hated them - don’t even like autofocus.
The Leica M series still works just the way I want: fast manual focus even in very low light, controls that work the way I am used to, and great, small lenses. Last month on a vacation trip I took two Leica bodies: one digital and one film. They use the same lenses, operate the same way, and “see” the way I do.
They are now priced beyond my means, but I still carry and use them everywhere. No one recognizes them or cares. If my digital gets lost or stolen, it’s gone, but I can still dust off my 1968 M4 and carry on.
Forum: Film Processing, Scanning, and Darkroom 07-14-2018, 07:00 PM  
Ilford PanF Plus 50
Posted By TomB_tx
Replies: 24
Views: 1,080
It’s my favorite film. I shoot at rated speed and develop in Rodinal 1:25 per Ilford’s procedure.
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