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  1. #1
    Michel Hardy-Vallée's Avatar
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    Good short zoom for a Spotmatic?

    I find myself occasionally shooting people for my workplace, and more and more I find that in the unpredictable contexts I'm shooting I would feel more comfortable with a zoom lens. My last shoot was with primes and I had to change focal 2-3 times during the same session, which is rather unnerving. A while ago I had done the same job with a d****l + zoom camera and the variable focal was a real helper here. I shoot mostly with flash light.

    So I've been looking for zooms in M42 mount that would cover something between 35 to 80 mm focal, and sadly Pentax never did one in M42. They only did an 85-210, which is way too long for my needs. I eventually found a page about someone using a Revuenon 28-70, which would be awesome, if only I could find it anywhere.

    My fear is that most zoom in M42 mount date from the "bad zoom" era, suffering from lots of flare, lack of sharpness, whatnot.

    The other option I could consider is to use a second body. Used spotties go for about the same price as better zoom lenses, so I wanted a second opinion on the matter: zoom or second body?
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    "One of the most singular characters of the hyposulphites, is the property their solutions possess of dissolving muriate of silver and retaining it in considerable quantity in permanent solution" — Sir John Frederick William Herschel, "On the Hyposulphurous Acid and its Compounds." The Edinburgh Philosophical Journal, Vol. 1 (8 Jan. 1819): 8-29. p. 11

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  2. #2

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    Have you considered one of the many Tamron adaptalls ? I am pretty sure they did a mount for M42.

  3. #3

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    If you're not tied to the spotty name plenty of good M42 bodies for very little. Some even have features that the spotties lack. I've got a Cosina with 1/125 flash sync. I bet on the open market the thing wouldn't get a sniff. But it works fine except for the dead meter. In my hands it actually feels better then the Pentax. The Cosina is bigger and better sized for me. But it's not just the Cosina. You'll find other brands. I'd actually suggest getting a K mount camera. Maybe a Ricoh. Usually very cheap. Then you can stick a K mount zoom on it. Or a M42 adapter to use M42 lenses.

    Either a non Pentax M42 or K mount can be cheaper then a Spotmatic.

  4. #4
    Michel Hardy-Vallée's Avatar
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    Peter: Yes, there was an Adaptall for M42. Are Adaptall lenses still manufactured?

    Nick: I haven't thought about that. A k-mount zoom body + my prime M42 lenses on my spotty. Given that K mount is still being manufactured, I suppose there would be some sweet zooms I could put on a K1000. Know any names?
    Using film since before it was hip.


    "One of the most singular characters of the hyposulphites, is the property their solutions possess of dissolving muriate of silver and retaining it in considerable quantity in permanent solution" — Sir John Frederick William Herschel, "On the Hyposulphurous Acid and its Compounds." The Edinburgh Philosophical Journal, Vol. 1 (8 Jan. 1819): 8-29. p. 11

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  5. #5
    PhotoJim's Avatar
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    Adaptall lenses are still made. You can even get a 28-105/2.8 if you really want one.


    Tamron's 28-80/3.5-4.2 is a decent, and inexpensive, lens. I'm not sure if that's the range you like, but if you do, it's worth seeking.

  6. #6
    DBP
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    I'd second the suggestion to pick up a older K-mount body and associated zoom as probably better than whatever zoom you could find in M42. But I did just check KEH and they have a misc brand 28-70 for $35. Though I have bought off brand K-mount cameras with a 35-70 for less.

  7. #7
    Michel Hardy-Vallée's Avatar
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    Looked up KEH for Adaptall zooms, and they are cheap! Something like a 35-80 would be small enough and cover most of my needs in these situations, without even needing me to carry an extra body (space savings help). I'd be curious to know how they are quality-wise, though. Don't need to be stellar, but at least so it doesn't make the photos look cheap.
    Using film since before it was hip.


    "One of the most singular characters of the hyposulphites, is the property their solutions possess of dissolving muriate of silver and retaining it in considerable quantity in permanent solution" — Sir John Frederick William Herschel, "On the Hyposulphurous Acid and its Compounds." The Edinburgh Philosophical Journal, Vol. 1 (8 Jan. 1819): 8-29. p. 11

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  8. #8

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    I'm not sure what lenses the K1000 handles. But unless things have changed you'll get a better deal going with a non Pentax K mount camera. The various Ricohs are usually much cheaper and better featured. They'll handle all the plain K mount lenses just fine.

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by mhv
    Looked up KEH for Adaptall zooms, and they are cheap! Something like a 35-80 would be small enough and cover most of my needs in these situations, without even needing me to carry an extra body (space savings help). I'd be curious to know how they are quality-wise, though. Don't need to be stellar, but at least so it doesn't make the photos look cheap.
    The 35-80 is actually a very good lens, certainly better than the one that Pentax makes now (bow-wow). It's only drawback is that, being an early zoom lens, for closeups/macro it only works at the 80mm end.

  10. #10
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    I have a zoom that (if I remember correctly) is a Tamron adapted for screwmount. I have a pre-Spotmatic Pentax. I used it a few times, but realized I liked the primes much better. I might be interested in loaning it out or selling it, since I think I used it about 3 times.

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