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Old 06-12-2005   #41
Jan Brittenson
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bmattock
I just bought a Pentax *ist DS and a M42 adapter for it. I'm sitting here right now, getting ready to go out with a Meyer Gorlitz Oreston 50mm f1.8, a Helios 44-M 58mm f2, Carl Zeiss Jena Tessar 80mm f2.8, Meyer Optik Gorliz Trioplan 100mm f2.8, and a Pentax Super Takumar 35mm f2.
Ooh, you've got some neat stuff there I've only read about. How is the Meyer 100? Been considering a Pentax 35/2 also... but they're not that cheap on ebay.
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Old 06-12-2005   #42
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Duncan Ross
for me the Fujica ST605N is the best kept secret of M42 SLRs
A very nice camera... I got one on ebay (ST605) for $20, but it turned out the meter is dead, the prism is full of crud, self timer doesn't work, and the first time I blew canned air into the mirror box all the foam came flying out. Looks nice though.
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Old 06-13-2005   #43
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jan Brittenson
A very nice camera... I got one on ebay (ST605) for $20, but it turned out the meter is dead, the prism is full of crud, self timer doesn't work, and the first time I blew canned air into the mirror box all the foam came flying out. Looks nice though.
So, uhh, got any pics from it?
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Old 06-13-2005   #44
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Originally Posted by Doug
So, uhh, got any pics from it?
No, and I probably won't use it. It's just too decrepit. Would like to find one in working condition though.
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Old 06-13-2005   #45
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I have a nice little M42 mount kit. All up I have probably spent less that $100 to build this kit (not including the 500mm reflex lens). This is what it consists of:

Bodies;
Praktica MTL-5
Praktica LB
Fujica ST605N

Lenses;
Yashica Auto Yashinon DS-M 50mm 1:1.7
Hanimex Automatic MC 35mm 1:2.8
Hanimex Auto "s" 135mm 1:2.8
Hanimex Automatic 135mm 1:2.8
Auto Makinon 28mm 1:2.8
RMC Tokina 70-105mm 1:3.8
Soligor 105mm 1:2.8
Hanimex 500mm 1:8 Reflex (mirror) Lens
Meyer-Optic Gorlitz Primotar 180mm 1:3.5
Meyer-Optik Gorlitz Domiplan 50mm 1:2.8

Tele Convereters;
Kent-Sankor 2x Converer
Argus Auto 2x TelXtender
Hanimex Auto 3x Converter

I am still running the first rolls through the Prakticas and the Fujica needs new light seals. The meters are working in all 3 cameras and the MTL-5 is in absolutely wonderful condition. The leather is like new on this baby.

Heath
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Old 06-13-2005   #46
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Heath - Sounds like a nice kit! None of those lenses should be slouches. I know from personal experience that the screw mount Yashinons were great. The Yashikors would be a different story. Optically the Yashikors weren't so bad, but they didn't have the multicoating the Yashinons had. How do you like the Meyer-Optics? Were the Hanimaxs made by Tokina also?
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Old 06-13-2005   #47
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YES, spotmatics work with 392 or 395 [the 395 fits best] batteries perfectly. The batteries last years and yes you can expose Ektachrome !
The metering circuit is a bridge so the .15V difference is compensated and exposures are perfect.
I've compared mine to a Minolta Spotmeter and there was less 1/3 stop difference or less in shadows, highlights, etc.


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....snip..... and would you believe I put in a 392 watch battery with a little shifting around and I get perfect exposures with color print film. I wouldn't try Kodachrome, though.
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Old 06-13-2005   #48
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oftheherd
Heath - Sounds like a nice kit! None of those lenses should be slouches. I know from personal experience that the screw mount Yashinons were great. The Yashikors would be a different story. Optically the Yashikors weren't so bad, but they didn't have the multicoating the Yashinons had. How do you like the Meyer-Optics? Were the Hanimaxs made by Tokina also?
I believe that the Hanimex lenses would have been made by CZJ or Pentacon in many cases. The "Auto-S" 135mm is almost certainly a "Sonnar". The E. German optics are generally above average and compare favorably to the better Japanese lenses.

My "normal" kit when I take out one of my Prakticas includes some combination of these lenses:

28mm f/2.5 Auto Vivitar
29mm f/2.8 MC Pentacon Electric
55mm f/1.4 Mamiya-Sekor
50mm f/1.8 MC Pentacon
50mm f/1.8 Pancolar
50mm f/1.8 Meyer-Gorlitz Oreston (I have four or five of them)
135mm f/2.8 MC Pentacon Electric
200mm f/4 Jupiter-21A (Pre-set) I also have the 21M auto but it's much larger & heavier.)
300mm f/3.5 Tair-3S Semi-auto
500mm f/6.3 Vivitar T2 Pre-set

I've recently added a 105mm f/2.8 Takumar "Auto" (semi-auto, really) and a 105mm f/2.8 Vivitar T4 auto. A Vivitar 24mm f/2.8 T4 lens should be here soon.

In general, I load the Prakticas with B&W while I use the Spotmatic II for color film. The Spotmatic meter is accurate but I use a hand held meter for the Prakticas.

IMO, the M42 cameras are one of the best buys/bargains on the market today. The Fuji and Prakticas in particular.

Walker
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Old 06-13-2005   #49
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Thanks for bringing up another camera kit I should not have sold!
Pentax Spotmatic F (mint from Ebay $80)
Pentax 28mm F3.5 SMC with hood and case (flea market $10 mint)
Pentax 50mm F1.4 SMC with hood and case (flea market $10 mint)
Pentax 135mm F3.5 SMC with hood and case (flea market $10 mint)
Pentax 55mm F2.0 SMC (very sharp,like it better than F1.4 lens)
Pentax 85mm F1.8 tak (bought cheap from pawnshop, sold for a bunch on Ebay)
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Old 06-13-2005   #50
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Heath

I am still running the first rolls through the Prakticas and the Fujica needs new light seals. The meters are working in all 3 cameras and the MTL-5 is in absolutely wonderful condition. The leather is like new on this baby.

Heath
If you haven't used a Fujica ST605N before be ready for the brief oh-my-god-I-forgot-to-put-film-in sensation when you rewind.
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Old 06-13-2005   #51
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Hi,
The prices on Fleabay are getting silly for Pentax M42. I was in London today and as luck would have it picked up a very nice 32/2 Super Tak, One of the earlier ones with 67mm filter for a lot less than they go for on the net and it has a 6 month warranty. In fact most of the Pentax stuff, I have bought recently has come from dealers rather than the net.

For a long time, the prices on the net were tumbling and the dealers were asking silly prices. Now that the prices have gone up again, they have woken up to the fact that they weren't selling anything and have dropped their prices. No doubt in another 6 months they will catch up again. In the meantime, I am looking in every shop I pass before they do!

Regards
Kim

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jan Brittenson
Ooh, you've got some neat stuff there I've only read about. How is the Meyer 100? Been considering a Pentax 35/2 also... but they're not that cheap on ebay.
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Old 06-13-2005   #52
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kim Coxon
Hi,
The prices on Fleabay are getting silly for Pentax M42. I was in London today and as luck would have it picked up a very nice 32/2 Super Tak, One of the earlier ones with 67mm filter for a lot less than they go for on the net and it has a 6 month warranty. In fact most of the Pentax stuff, I have bought recently has come from dealers rather than the net. Regards Kim
Prices do seem to be on the rise but being watchful can land a bargain still. I recently bought a 105mm f/2.8 Auto Takumar (semi-auto, really) in mint condition for $59, shipping included. Then I found a pristine Vivitar 105mm f/2.8 T4 mount lens in my local shop for $30. I can use it on my M42 cameras or my Exaktas or my OM as I choose by swapping adapters. Today I received an "Aus Jena S" 135mm f/4 lens in Exakta mount and in perfect condition for $50. The Vivitar 24mm f/2.8 lens in T4 mount I'm waiting on was $13.49...... shipped!

While the first three may not have been "steals", they're all excellent buys IMO and certainly worth more than I paid.

My list of lenses that I really want has gotten pretty short. About the only thing I'm missing is an 85 or 90mm and I'd like to find a T4 mount Vivitar or Soligor so I can swap it between cameras. IMO, the jump from 50mm to 105mm is just a bit too much and I'd like a lens that falls between them.

Walker
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Old 06-13-2005   #53
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I forgot to mention another M-42 mount camera I have in my collection. It is a Yashica TL-Electro. It is in full working condition. The only problem with it is the focusing screen is in bad condition, so I have relegated it to my display shelf.

The Meyer-Optics seem to be great lenses, with the 180mm being a preset lens. It is HUGE but very easy to use. The Soligor is also a preset and is quite small in size.

All 3 Hanimex lenses were made in Japan, but I suspect that their designs were 'borrowed' from German designs. Hanmex was also the main distributor of the Praktica range for many years, so it is no wonder that their name appears on a range of M-42 mount lenses. They also released their own cameras that were 'badge engineered' for them. In other words they just put their name on cameras made by other companies, usually ones they had the distribution rights to.

The biggest bargain of my M-42 kit was the MTL-5. I paid less than $20 AUD for the body, including postage. I was prepaired for a camera that was in need of a major overhaul, but when it arrived I was pleasently shocked. This thing was in close to mint condition. The leather was perfect, the chromework was not marked, except for some slight marks on the base you would have thought this body just came out of the factory. Best part was the light meter works and I suspect it is quite accurate. It looks boxy but I just love the feel of it.

Duncan, I have to ask why you get that feeling with the ST605N? I can't wait to get a light seal kit (one of Jon Goodmans, of course) so I can give this body a run. I like the rather compact feel of it as well as the larger Prakticas.

Talking of small SLR's, I bought a Ricoh KR-5 Super II for a friend to replace her Pentax K1000 which had died. The Ricoh is a very small camera. I think it would be great for a young teen or anyone with small hands.

Heath
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Old 06-14-2005   #54
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See new English version of my page: http://www.taunusreiter.de/Cameras/Pentax_MX_e.html

no need to babblefish it any longer :-)

cheers, Frank
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Old 06-14-2005   #55
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Heath
I forgot to mention another M-42 mount camera I have in my collection. It is a Yashica TL-Electro. It is in full working condition. The only problem with it is the focusing screen is in bad condition, so I have relegated it to my display shelf.

...
Yep, those are good too. I don't like the plastic lever that activates the meter, but then they seem to hold up. I remember seeing them when they came out, and comparing them to my TL Super, which I thought seemed sturdier. Still, when I had a chance to get a couple Electro-X's on fleabay at something like $15 or so I jumped. On one the film counter didn't work as advertised, but it was a simple fix to glue the counter window back in place and all worked well. I have always believed the Yashica TL line was much better than it got credit for.
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Old 06-15-2005   #56
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I agree, the TL is a great camera. It feels good in the hands (unless you have very small hands). The body is just a fraction larger than the Praktica LB and quite a bit larger than the ST605N. One thing I have noticed about this model is if you happen to have a flash synch cable attached the plug is in the way of the meter switch. Just wish the focusing screen on mine wasn't scratched to buggery. I wonder how easy they are to get and replace?

Heath
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Old 06-15-2005   #57
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Does someone have a takumar 85mm 1.8 or 1.9? How does it perform? Is it as good or almost as good as the 50 and 55mm takumars? I'm very interested in the 85mm takumar, but they are rather "expensive" on the bay, so I tought I'd first ask about its performance.

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Old 06-15-2005   #58
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There are 3 versions: SMC 85/1.8 has 6-lens whereas the Auto 1.8- and Super 1.9- has 5 lenses. All quite compact (ca.350g)
According to this test: http://www.takinami.com/yoshihiko/ph...ntax_tele.html
the last SMC-T 1.8/85 was superior to the later SMC-M 2/85. But also the older lenses received high credits.
cheers, Frank
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Old 06-15-2005   #59
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Thanks Frank for your comments and the URL, so I'll be getting on the lookout for one with a reasonable price.

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Old 06-15-2005   #60
Wayne R. Scott
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One of my favorite screw mount lens is a Vivitar Series 1 135mm f2.3. It is heavy and solid, focuses closer than any other telephoto that I own with out extention tubes. Very sharp. I like to use it for portraits.

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Old 06-15-2005   #61
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Hi, I have used both versions and although the 6 element has a slight edge, they are both excellent.

Kim

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sonnar2
There are 3 versions: SMC 85/1.8 has 6-lens whereas the Auto 1.8- and Super 1.9- has 5 lenses. All quite compact (ca.350g)
According to this test: http://www.takinami.com/yoshihiko/ph...ntax_tele.html
the last SMC-T 1.8/85 was superior to the later SMC-M 2/85. But also the older lenses received high credits.
cheers, Frank
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Old 06-15-2005   #62
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Don't forget the Chinon 1.4 and 1.7. Nice stuff. Also, if you want a brand new screwmount wide angle lens for $25....you can look here:

http://www.apogeeinc.com/product.asp?itemid=421

I have one, and it has been very nice. I bought mine about 6 years ago. It was $22 back then. Inflation.
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Old 06-15-2005   #63
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Heath

Duncan, I have to ask why you get that feeling with the ST605N? I can't wait to get a light seal kit (one of Jon Goodmans, of course) so I can give this body a run. I like the rather compact feel of it as well as the larger Prakticas.

Heath
Hi Heath!

It's something about the Fujica that I haven't noticed with other SLRs I've tried. The rewind is so completely frictionless that it feels at first as if you are winding thin air. As I said a bit disconcerting for a few seconds!
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Old 06-15-2005   #64
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I've had several Pentax 85mm lenses, though that fact isn't likely to be of help because It's been some years since using them and I don't have a firm recollection of comparitive quality.

I had the Auto-Takumar 85mm f/1.8 in the 60's and used it quite a lot for street photography on a Spotmatic or H3v in combination with a 35mm on a Leica M2. I'd carry both around the neck on different length straps as I wandered the streets looking for subjects. By early 1972 I had gotten fed up with cranking the diaphragm back open after each shot and traded it on a Super-Takumar 85mm f/1.9 which I still have. Later that year when I got a new Pentax ES (Electro Spotmatic) I regretted that it wasn't a Super-Multi-Coated Takumar compatible with the ES's open-aperture metering.

The 85 has long been a favorite focal length, so when we got K-mount Pentaxes in '83, the SMC-Pentax 85mm f/1.8 was an early addition. My wife found it very useful for her theatre photography. I recently got it out and noticed the whole front ring with the filter threads was loose, and allowing the protective filter to contact the front element! Must have been some impact damage, so I got that repaired, and just finished a roll with it in my "new" K2 DMD. So we shall soon see some results, but my impression is that all these Pentax 85's are excellent.
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Old 06-15-2005   #65
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Doug
I recently got it out and noticed the whole front ring with the filter threads was loose, and allowing the protective filter to contact the front element!
My SMC Tak 50/1.4 just did that. I used it this morning, and when I got back home it was in pieces. The filter thread front piece seems like it's held down with three screws, they were nowhere to be found on mine of course, so I can't put it together again. Blech. Sucks after only a week's use.
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Old 06-15-2005   #66
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jan Brittenson
My SMC Tak 50/1.4 just did that. I used it this morning, and when I got back home it was in pieces. The filter thread front piece seems like it's held down with three screws...
Interesting! So it could have simply been vibration backing the screws out... And maybe a rather easy repair once one has the screws on hand!
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Old 06-16-2005   #67
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Hi Joris,
you can throw me dead with short-telephotos for RF and SLR's; I think I gained 8 pieces with f/1.4, 1.8 and f/2 in the last couple of years.
About prices: Compared with RF equipment Pentax is still really cheap! And I the perfomance isn't much lower (if ever) ...think the priceerformance ratio speaks for Pentax. I wonder why "portait telephotos" (f/2 or faster) are expensive compared to others in virtually every mount.
Last night I hunted a early Auto-Takumar black-chrome 2.8/105mm matching my 1959' H2 with case and caps from a collector for 41 USD, plus shipping. Not fast, but 49mm filter, 280g weight, more compact than a "portrait lens"... if I really need "speed".. well than there are 8 others in my cabinet waiting for me to use, incl. a Zeiss 1.4/85...

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Old 06-16-2005   #68
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Doug
Interesting! So it could have simply been vibration backing the screws out... And maybe a rather easy repair once one has the screws on hand!
That was exactly my thought as well. Couldn't find the screws though. Anyway, dropped it off for service at Adolph Gasser today. Had been procrastinating on some other gear as well; a Pentax 67 400mmEDIF that needs a new mount flange, aperture adjustment, and CLA (it's going for sale and I want to get top dollar for it). So it was a good time to bring both in for some TLC. I expect fixing the smc-tak will be really inexpensive, if I had the screws I think I could have done it myself in ten minutes.
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Old 06-16-2005   #69
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Lens screws loosening is something of a problem in my experience. My first encounter was a Soligor 135mm auto lens for Exakta in 1972 when it disassembled during a return flight on a C-130 from Germany to Kansas. It went into the trash when I couldn't figure out how to fix it.

A few months ago I bought a 135mm f/2.8 Mamiya-Sekor lens on ebay and the mount portion was wobbly. I was able to slide a collar down that allowed me to tighten three loose screws and it's perfect now. It must have a lot of brass in it's construction judging by it's weight.

There have been a few more recently but fixing them has been relatively easy.

Walker
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Old 06-17-2005   #70
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those 135/2.8 sekors are pretty. Portraits with those are awesome!

I bought a couple of Sekor lenses under the Sears brand (cheap) and have been pleasantly surprosed

However, and as it has been pointed out, the construction is not in the takumar level.
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Old 06-28-2005   #71
Uncle Bill
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I picked up a Pentax Spotmatic with a 50/1.4 lens at a Toronto area camera show for $40 Cdn with a 28mm wideangle lens thrown in for good.measure. Now to make things even better I also got at Henry's clearance centre a Takumar 55/1.8 and 135 F ( I can't remember off hand) for $35 for both lenses. I love shooting rangefinder, I also love shooting with my SLR's the spotmatic is for when I don't want to take out my Nikon or Nikkormat.

Bill
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Old 06-28-2005   #72
oljim
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I've got an F and an SP with a cache of excellent lenses (and several so-so ones). I really love my Spotties. The focusing ring on both my 50 f1.4 and 55 f1.8 moves so smoooooothly I find myself purring. I also got a Helios 85 f1.5 because I need to build some upper body strength.

I turn up for "serious jobs" (on the rare occasion I get them) with my Spotmatics and a Rolleicord. I get laughed at for using my "old" gear, but smiled at when I show them the results. I swear, one day I'll go to a commercial gig with a Box Brownie.

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Old 06-28-2005   #73
bmattock
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oljim
I've got an F and an SP with a cache of excellent lenses (and several so-so ones). I really love my Spotties. The focusing ring on both my 50 f1.4 and 55 f1.8 moves so smoooooothly I find myself purring. I also got a Helios 85 f1.5 because I need to build some upper body strength.

I turn up for "serious jobs" (on the rare occasion I get them) with my Spotmatics and a Rolleicord. I get laughed at for using my "old" gear, but smiled at when I show them the results. I swear, one day I'll go to a commercial gig with a Box Brownie.
I took a series of photos of a house fire recently with a Brownie Hawkeye and the local newspaper published one of them. I was amazed, but the old Brownie was still up to doing the job.

Best Regards,

Bill Mattocks
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Old 06-28-2005   #74
doubs43
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In a couple of days I should receive a package containing a Praktica Super-TL andsome accessories. One of the accessories is a 105mm lens that appeared in the picture to be a Super Takumar. If I'm correct, the lens alone normally sells on ebay for 2 or 3 times what I paid for everything.

If an inexpensive SLR is desired, the M42 mount cameras are plentiful and cheap. The lenses have also been inexpensive with some exceptions. Pro-grade equipment can be had for a small fraction of the cost when new even 35 years ago. We may look back on this time as being the "Golden Days" for inexpensive film cameras.

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Old 06-28-2005   #75
ErnestoJL
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The first SLR I had in my hands was Spotmatic, back in 1969. Unfortunately, I was too young to afford one of those, and some time later I bought a Miranda Sensomat RE. Not an M42 x 1 , but... some years later it got an adapter fitted on the lens mount. Undoubtedly, M42 lenses were far cheaper and there were lots of them new or used.
Now I have:
Miranda Sensomat RE (with M42 mount) Normal in use is Carenar 1.8 /50
Fujica ST 801 - EBC Fujinon 50/1.8
Praktica Nova Ib PL - Meyer Oreston 50/1.8 (zebra striped)
Carena Micro RSD (not working) (waiting for repair)
Zenit 12 XP - Helios 103 58/2

At the time I bought the Praktica, the vendor offered another normal, but he said "This one goes for $10, but is not as good as the one in the camera"... it was a CZJ Tessar 50/2.8 (zebra stripes). No regrets, of course!

I´m in doubt if today´s plastic and light alloy made lens barrels will be (mechanically) alive trhirty of forty years in the future. Those old Takumars, Soligors, Tamron, Fujinons, Mamiya/Sekor and others are still alive. They are heavy, made to last, ´feel that´s worth the extra weight!
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Old 06-28-2005   #76
dmr
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Quote:
Originally Posted by doubs43
Pro-grade equipment can be had for a small fraction of the cost when new even 35 years ago. We may look back on this time as being the "Golden Days" for inexpensive film cameras.
As I look back and remember the countless competing systems that were available at that time, it seems like only the Nikon/Nikkormat and the Pentax screw mount systems have really survived. Well, at least those seem to be far more common in this day and age than the others.

The Nikons, I admit, seem to have held their value a bit more.

I chose the Spotmatic mainly 'cuz my brother had an earlier Pentax and liked it. Some of my friends went, however, for such things as the Minolta 101, the Bessler Topcon (which you don't even seem to see anymore) and of course the Nikkormat. These seemed to be the ones my friends got or wanted badly. (The "real" Nikon F and the Leica were out of our league!)

There were countless others, Mamiya, Miranda, Kowa, Konica, Petri. Those you don't really see too much of anymore.

But those Pentax screw-mount and compatible cameras still seem to be popular, and very affordable.
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Old 06-28-2005   #77
Doug
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These old Pentaxes may be long "obsolete" but we can still appreciate their quality and elegant designs. I'm happy to occasionally use my H3, which I treated to a full CLA service last year...
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