Pentax question - has anybody done this?

Discussion in 'Pentax' started by Snake, Dec 19, 2004.

  1. Snake

    Snake Guest

    I have a 1969-vintage screw-mount Spotmatic which I greatly enjoyed using
    back in the good old days. I burned a lot of various-kinds-of-chrome with
    it, with some pretty good results. But over the years I didn't have time to
    do photgraphy with any degree of seriousness. I currrently have an
    aim-and-shoot digital camera and enjoy the convenience of digital
    photography. Not to mention the joy of not having to buy film and
    processing.

    But I plan to retire pretty soon and have a lot more time on my hands.
    Aim-and-shoot photgraphy just isn't much fun, and I'll miss the flexibility
    of having an aresenal of lenses.

    So, I know the Pentax digital SLRs are compatible with the later
    bayonet-mount lenses. Adapters are (or were) available to use the old
    screw-mount lenses with the later Pentax film camera bodies.

    It would follow that one could use old Takumar screw-mount lenses, with the
    bayonet adapter, on a Pentax digital SLR body.

    My questions are: has anybody tried this? Does it work? How well does it
    work? Any loss of functionality, and if so, what?

    Snake
     
    Snake, Dec 19, 2004
    #1
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  2. Hey...I've got a 1969 Spotmatic too that still works. Have to use the
    lenses on manual because the pin that stops them down is sluggish. But
    other than that, it works great.

    I went digital last year and went with the 10D. Been a medium format
    kinda guy through the years and since I had no allegiance to any
    reasonably current 35mm, went with the Canon.
     
    Randall Ainsworth, Dec 20, 2004
    #2
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  3. Snake

    Gaderian Guest

    I too have a few old screw mount lenses from an old Spotmatic but I never
    bought the adapter to use them on my new Pentax *ist DSLR. I've heard from
    a few people you can get the older lenses to work with the adapter but you
    miss out on some of the new features the *ist has to offer. Lucky for me I
    have enough of the newer AF lenses from my Pentax MZ60 film camera and they
    work fine with all of the features on the *ist.

    If you're going to jump to a digital SLR most of the bundled packages come
    with a lens anyway. I went to the Pentax bcecause I had 3 newer Pentax
    lenses and other Pentax accessories. Otherwise I'd still be deciding
    between Canon, Nikon, Pentax, etc.
     
    Gaderian, Dec 20, 2004
    #3
  4. :
    : So, I know the Pentax digital SLRs are compatible with the later
    : bayonet-mount lenses. Adapters are (or were) available to use the old
    : screw-mount lenses with the later Pentax film camera bodies.
    :
    : It would follow that one could use old Takumar screw-mount lenses, with the
    : bayonet adapter, on a Pentax digital SLR body.
    :
    : My questions are: has anybody tried this? Does it work? How well does it
    : work? Any loss of functionality, and if so, what?

    It works as well as the screwmounts ever did. I tried it with one old
    screwmount lens right after I got my DS.

    You have to go "full manual" for exposure - if you're stopping down to
    f/16, you'll be metering and focusing with the lens actually stopped down.

    Other than that, it works just fine. You might be annoyed by the 1.5x
    crop factor, though - your nice neat 80mm portrait lens turns into a 120mm
    telephoto... your 28mm medium-wide turns into a 34mm normal lens. Great
    if you like telephoto, and not so great if you are a fan of wide angles!

    -Charles
     
    Charles Robinson, Dec 20, 2004
    #4
  5. Snake

    John Francis Guest


    Several people have done this. It works just fine.

    There is just one potential loss of functionality for a screw-mount
    lens used on a K-mount body (be that one of the latest digital bodies,
    or any one of the K-mount film bodies). If you have one of the later
    auto-Takumar lenses that was capable of full-aperture metering with a
    Spotmatic-F, you lose that ability. If you're used to one of the older
    Spotmatic bodies (such as, for example, the 1969 model your mention),
    you're already used to stop-down metering.

    Obviously you don't magically gain functionality that the lenses don't
    posess - you don't get auto-focus with those manual focus lenses, and
    the camera body is unable to select the appropriate aperture. But you
    do get focus confirmation, and the camera can be set to pick a shutter
    speed automatically based on the selected aperture.

    In fact the screwmount lenses work rather better on the digital bodies
    than do some of the intermediate K-mount lenses (those without an "A"
    setting on the aperture ring).

    There are some wonderful old screwmount Takumar lenses; I'm sure you'd
    enjoy using them on a digital body (you can even get an adapter to use
    them on a Canon body, but I can't speak to how well that works).

    One thing you might not like, though, is the lack of focussing aids
    (such as split screens or microprisms) in the viewfinder of modern
    cameras. You're reduced to focussing on the simple matte screen.
    Fortunately the Pentax digitals have a much better viewfinder than
    those in the competition for manual focussing - larger & brighter.
     
    John Francis, Dec 20, 2004
    #5
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