Pentax SP1000 replacement

Discussion in '35mm Cameras and Accessories' started by Degenetron, Jul 24, 2007.

  1. Degenetron

    Degenetron Member

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    My dad gave me his old pentax sp1000 a while ago, together with some lenses, filters etc. The camera is in pretty bad shape, but the lenses and the rest of the equipment are fine. Would be a shame to just have the lenses sitting there, so i figured i'd get a new camera body that fit them. I was thinking i would get an identical asahi pentax sp1000, but those don't seem to be that easy to come by, and even rarer in good condition.

    So my question is, what other cameras could i be looking for? Anything that fits the pentax screw mount the sp1000 has would be of interest. My knowledge of cameras is limited and being rather new to photography i've focused mostly on the nikon fm2n i bought a short time before i got the pentax. the fm2n would be a much better starter to build on i figure, but i still got all these pentax lenses i can't use.. so well.. i need a camera for them.

    I guess what i'm looking for is peoples experiences with different cameras that fit the bill. Durability, functionality, and also availability on the second hand market.

    Lemme hear your thoughts people :smile:
     
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  2. Andy K

    Andy K Member

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    Look for a Voigtlander Bessaflex TM. You might even still be able to get one new. Although they were recently discontinued Robert White in the Uk are still showing them in stock. (when the linked page opens you'll need to scroll down to Voigtlander SLR Cameras)
     
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  3. zenrhino

    zenrhino Member

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    There's still tons of milage to be had on cold-war era Prakticas. The one that I have is as old as my dad, the meter is accurate (and not stopdown metering!), the shutter is accurate, it takes a 625 battery (not a mercury battery) and the thing is damn near bulletproof.

    I don't take mine out often since I got a Spotmatic but that's mostly because the Praktica was my very first camera and I'd feel awful if I lost it.
     
  4. Trond

    Trond Subscriber

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    Buy a Spotmatic on eBay, there are always quite a few of them there. Since a Spotmatic is, depending on model, at least 30 years old, it would be a good idea to it serviced (f. ex. here: http://pentaxs.com/). Spotmatic cameras are very well made cameras, and will last a long time if properly cared for.

    Trond
     
  5. Degenetron

    Degenetron Member

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    Andy K: Hmm.. the voightlander seems like an excellent idea. And if i could get a brand new one.. damn.. thats just amazing. Didn't even cross my mind that i could get a new camera for these old lenses. It's about 10x more expensive than the used sp1000's i've found though, but well.. no doubt worth the money and well within reach.

    zenrhino: thanks for the tip man :smile: i'll spend some time looking into the old prakticas. Wasn't aware that the lenses i had would fit this many camera brands.. I was expecting people to come up with a couple other pentax models.. but man.. this is excellent :smile:

    Just for good measure.. m42 would be the name of the lens fitting for the sp1000, yes?
    I didn't even know this.. that alone will make this easier :wink:
     
  6. DBP

    DBP Member

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    The old Fujicas (ST-605, ST-701, etc.) are nice compact machines. There is also the Ricoh TLS, which usually sells for a pittance, especially in the Sears version. I doubt I have ever paid more than $20 for a universal screw mount camera.
     
  7. Andy K

    Andy K Member

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    Yes they are M42 lenses. There are many cameras that will take them. Zenit, Praktica, Pentax, Fujica, Contax, Pentacon, Yashica, Ricoh, Voigtlander, Mamiya... the list goes on!
     
  8. Nick Zentena

    Nick Zentena Member

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    With the Mamiya you have to be careful. They made various different mounts. I think going back and forth to confuse the issue.

    Somebody will jump up and cry but I've got an old Cosina that in many ways is better then my old Spotmatic. OTOH it is bigger by a fair bit. OTOH the more common stuff will be easier to find.
     
  9. DBP

    DBP Member

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    BTW, almost everyone except Nikon and Canon made cameras in M42 mount.
     
  10. Degenetron

    Degenetron Member

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    hmm.. seems i have some reading to do. While i have to admit i fell hard for the voigtlander bessaflex tm, (the thought of a store new, old school camera that fits my lenses is too much i think :wink:) I would still appreciate more ideas.
     
  11. Nick Zentena

    Nick Zentena Member

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    Any K mount camera with a M42 adapter. :tongue:
     
  12. Andy K

    Andy K Member

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    I can recommend the Bessaflex (I have one). It is a good basic camera with stop down metering. Its only shortfall is it has no flash shoe. I got the correct accessory shoe for mine from Eb*y.
    I also have an Asahi Pentax SP1000 which is awaiting the day I can afford to have it refurbished (it needs the shutter speeds adjusted). Unfortunately Pentax UK will no longer accept ANY older cameras for servicing, so I will have to go to a third party service agent. That will cost between £145 to £235.
     
  13. Degenetron

    Degenetron Member

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    well.. the flash shoe isn't all that important. i got most of the close fire range covered on the fm2. So, practuically, it has no shortfalls? :wink: I liked the bessaflex cause it was to some extent the same type of camera as the sp1000 (atleast from what i can gather). It fills the gap of the sp1000 without being an unnecessary competitor to my fm2.

    EDIT: I have a flash setup for the sp1000 as well.. would that work on the voigtlander?
     
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  15. Paul Howell

    Paul Howell Member

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    As mentioned earlier there are many options for M42, I have 6 or 7 M42 bodies some of which are holding up better than others. I still have my first Spotmatic bought in the 1960, the meter is not accurate but the shutter is dead on. I have another Spot with a good working meter, I bought a battery converter before I learned that for Spots a converter is not needed. Spots use stop down metering are rugged and very basic. The later F and ES (sutomatic shutter speed) bodiesuse open apature metering and some Fs and ES could be fitted with a motor drive. I also have a Chinon with a winder, good solid camera but the winder is only just working. Chinon, Ricoh, and Cosina made cameras for Sears, Ward, Penny's and Vivitar, again very basic but rugged cameras and cheap on Ebay. I have a Mamiya that used the M42 thread but a different pin system so my Pentex M42 lens dont meter at all, not even in stop down. Mamiya also made stop down metered single pin boides with a spot meter, the 500 and 1000. Yashica and Fuji made variants of the M42 mount so you need to be careful about the model so can match the standard M42 lens with the correct body. On the high end Alpha and Context made M42 mount cameras as well. Most of the older cameras used 625 mercury batteries, you can find converters, use Winn Air or hearing aid batteris.
     
  16. mabman

    mabman Member

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    I've also got a Bessaflex - I quite like it - sturdy, fits well in my hands. I use primarily Russian/Soviet M42 lenses, most (all?) of which are manual, so I use stop-down anyway :smile:

    The only thing I'm not crazy about on it is the LED metering - easier to see in lower-light than a needle, but harder to tell exactly how far + or - you actually are.

    In fact, although I'm keeping the Bessaflex for now, I've just bought a couple of Pentax ME Supers from KEH (cheap in "bgn" condition, which should be just fine), and a couple of m42-k-mount adapters from B&H (I wanted genuine Pentax adapters, but was told there was a 1-2 month waiting list), so that I can take advantage of the ME Super's aperture priority (or at least this is supposed to work with stop-down metering from what I've read) and yet still have a manual mode if I want.

    Also, I just bought an early 90's vintage (Belo-)Russian "Zenit-ET", which is M42 mount and has an uncoupled selenium meter. I really only bought it because it was a cheap way to get the lens I wanted on it (Helios 44M-6) - but in my experience finding working selenium meters in even relatively recent FSU cameras to be fairly random. But, having another M42 body can't be bad :smile:
     
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  17. Andy K

    Andy K Member

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    There is a Bessaflex Group on Flickr, if you would like to see what this camera can do.
     
  18. aldevo

    aldevo Member

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    I own several Fujica ST-series SLRs and they are a delight to use. They have brighter viewfinders than the Spotmatics. They are somewhat rare, however, in N. America and are now commanding $50-100 on eBay.

    Another alternative would be the Yashica TL-Electro. I own one and the viewfinders are similarly bright. The TL-Electro also has mirror lock-up and a higher flash sync speed (nominally 1/125 sec, though likely 1/90 sec in actuality) than most M42s.

    Best of all they can usually be had (with the sadly flare-prone Yashinon DX 50mm f/1.4) for about $30.
     
  19. Paul Howell

    Paul Howell Member

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  20. Jerry Thirsty

    Jerry Thirsty Member

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    I mothballed my SP500 and Spotmatic F (both with dead meters) when I got a Fujica ST801. Very nicely built and nice features.
     
  21. Brac

    Brac Member

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    It's possible to get Pentax cameras of the 60's & 70's serviced for around the £45-£60 mark by a repairer in Derbyshire, UK who lists on the Uk ebay site as Camera Repairer. He will do models other than just those he lists. I've used him for a Pentax Super ME and he was fine. These prices include replacing the light seals & mirror bumper & you can be 100% sure they will need replacing after 30 to 40 plus years.
     
  22. DBP

    DBP Member

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    I see a Fujica ST605 http://cgi.ebay.com/FUJICA-ST605n-C...6QQihZ008QQcategoryZ11720QQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem went for $10.49 yesterday, which is in the same range as the two I bought (one since sold).
     
  23. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

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    There are still plenty of excellent Spotmatics available, I bought a Sptmatic F for £25 18months ago, in mint condition, and a Spotmatic II for much less but not as good cosmetically.

    These camera's can be serviced and repaired at reasonable prices by a no of UK repairers. The Derbyshire guy, if it's who I'm think you mean in Clay Cross, is very helpful.

    Ian
     
  24. aldevo

    aldevo Member

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    The 705 and 801/901 fetch higher since they support somewhat higher speeds (1/1500 and 1/2000) than the other Fujicas and almost all other M42 cameras.

    Also the 55mm f/2.2 isn't particularly coveted. Most are outfitted with a 55mm f/1.8 or 50mm f/1.4.
     
  25. aldevo

    aldevo Member

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  26. magkelly

    magkelly Member

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    Bump up one model to an SP2. You'll have all the advantages of the SP1, the same M42 mount and the convenience of a built in hot shoe.