August 22, 2014, 04:28:28 PM

Author Topic: Any old K-mount lenses worth getting?  (Read 1171 times)

Logan

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Any old K-mount lenses worth getting?
« on: June 08, 2014, 07:24:00 PM »
Picked up a K-mount adapter to try out a coworkers old tamron lenses, they were too fogged up and one was missing all damping on the zoom so i let him keep them.

Are there any old K lenses that I should keep an eye out for? I noticed what looks like a 50mm F2 pancake, and some 50mm F1.2 lenses.

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Any old K-mount lenses worth getting?
« on: June 08, 2014, 07:24:00 PM »

adamdoesmovies

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Re: Any old K-mount lenses worth getting?
« Reply #1 on: June 08, 2014, 10:15:01 PM »
K-Mount is full of so many different lenses!! Pentax has had a lineup of original and third-party lenses with compatible mounts extending almost as far back as Nikon. SMC Pentax (formerly "Takumar" branded lenses) are freaking fantastic, and can be readily found in K-mount or a PK variant if you look. - I have a whole lineup of the takumars in M42 mount. Generally speaking, mount adapters are good to have on hand anyhow. I can't tell you how many cool and interesting lenses I've picked up in thrift stores just because I knew I could adapt them! (the number is definitely in the dozens, though)

Sella174

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Re: Any old K-mount lenses worth getting?
« Reply #2 on: June 09, 2014, 02:53:36 AM »
The PENTAX-M versions are the best. And really don't throw away that 50mm f/1.7 lens ... cheap and brilliant.
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Mt Spokane Photography

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Re: Any old K-mount lenses worth getting?
« Reply #3 on: June 09, 2014, 10:31:41 AM »
I've generally found that old film lenses, and I have had a hundred or two of them, do not perform as well as even a consumer grade modern DSLR lens.  The coatings are not useful for DSLR's, and the edges are weak.  Zooms are the worst.
Still, there are always certain lenses that break that general rule, and are sought after.  Only a few though.
So, though I like to adapt and try them, most are disappointing.  You can always stop them down to f/8 though.  Even a coke bottle gets sharp when stopped down enough.

sdsr

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Re: Any old K-mount lenses worth getting?
« Reply #4 on: June 09, 2014, 10:33:44 AM »
Picked up a K-mount adapter to try out a coworkers old tamron lenses, they were too fogged up and one was missing all damping on the zoom so i let him keep them.

Are there any old K lenses that I should keep an eye out for? I noticed what looks like a 50mm F2 pancake, and some 50mm F1.2 lenses.


There are quite a lot (get an M42 adapter as well for earlier Pentax manual lenses, such as the Super Takumars).  You should take a look the extensive user reviews at pentaxforums:

http://www.pentaxforums.com/lensreviews/

You'll also find useful reviews of other M42 mount lenses, including some interesting Russian ones.

(It's much easier to use these on a mirrorless camera, though....)

Logan

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Re: Any old K-mount lenses worth getting?
« Reply #5 on: June 09, 2014, 07:58:26 PM »
I've generally found that old film lenses, and I have had a hundred or two of them, do not perform as well as even a consumer grade modern DSLR lens.  The coatings are not useful for DSLR's, and the edges are weak.  Zooms are the worst.
Still, there are always certain lenses that break that general rule, and are sought after.  Only a few though.
So, though I like to adapt and try them, most are disappointing.  You can always stop them down to f/8 though.  Even a coke bottle gets sharp when stopped down enough.

im not looking to outperform current lenses, just looking to get some use out of the adapter and maybe find some interesting lenses to use. are there any old tilt shift lenses or is that a newer invention for 35mm? i would be very interested in playing with an older one if such a thing exists. (i know m/l format has had tilt shift forever)

Sella174

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Re: Any old K-mount lenses worth getting?
« Reply #6 on: June 10, 2014, 02:04:26 PM »
im not looking to outperform current lenses, just looking to get some use out of the adapter and maybe find some interesting lenses to use. are there any old tilt shift lenses or is that a newer invention for 35mm? i would be very interested in playing with an older one if such a thing exists. (i know m/l format has had tilt shift forever)

Most of the old lenses were designed for certain characteristics, instead of absolute sharpness. It is my opinion that nearly all these old lenses have great artistic value. My favourites are the Super-Takumar and the Tamron BBAR lenses; and I personally dislike the Super-Multi-Coated TAKUMAR and the Olympus OM-SYSTEM lenses.

I know that both Pentax and Nikon made a few T&S lenses ... they're rare and very expensive.
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Re: Any old K-mount lenses worth getting?
« Reply #6 on: June 10, 2014, 02:04:26 PM »

NancyP

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Re: Any old K-mount lenses worth getting?
« Reply #7 on: July 10, 2014, 10:43:30 AM »
Yes, I think that the old lenses by and large are not as sharp, but for some of these old lenses, the color and contrast and general rendition are very pleasing for certain shots. Modern lenses designed for digital have a slightly "clinical" look. Roger Cicala has a recent post on lensrental blog concerning the sensor UV/IR filter assembly. This is a glass filter on top of your sensor - thickness varies from 0.7mm to 4 mm, depending on the brand and type of camera. Most  DSLRs have a filter thickness of 2.0mm +/- 0.5mm. This is likely taken into account when designing lenses for DSLRs. As it turns out, a difference of 2 mm does make some difference to resolution and contrast of some focal lengths at some apertures. What was the filter thickness of the film sensor? NO filter. So it is possible that the lenses were close to ideal FOR THE CAMERAS THEY WERE DESIGNED TO FIT. Note that one of the major problems of film cameras was to get the film exactly flat and on a predictable plane. There was always some small fraction of a millimeter variance with most cameras. A few large format backs were custom-built to have vacuum backs to hold film exactly flat - a real issue if you are shooting 8 x 10.

Of my collection of vintage (1970s - early 1980s)) prime lenses, none are uniformly sharp at f/1.2  - f/2, and the contrast also is weak, but one can still take a pleasing image, depending on your composition, lighting, and intention. (As I age, I see the virtues of imperfect lenses for portraiture). The AIS Nikkor 50mm f/1.2 has a hazy romantic look at f/1.2, is tack sharp at f/4, and for the time being occupies an honored place in my bag for landscape - I have even bought it a new fine screen (Eg-S) for my 6D. The sharpness of my other normal primes (Mamiya-Sekor 55 mm f/1.4 and Mamiya-Sekor 60mm f/2.8 1:1 macro preset) is good but not stellar by modern measures, the color is great though. I am learning my way around the AIS Nikkor 105mm f/2.5 currently. The best part of this is that these are "free", having been fished out from the back of the closet as an interim measure while I decided on full frame lenses to kit out the 6D.

Every serious shooter from the film days knew to avoid the 1970s - 1980s vintage zooms. S*cked.

pdirestajr

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Re: Any old K-mount lenses worth getting?
« Reply #8 on: July 15, 2014, 04:13:48 PM »
The SMC Pentax-M 28mm f3.5 lens is actually a really sharp lens.

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bigdaddy

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Re: Any old K-mount lenses worth getting?
« Reply #9 on: July 15, 2014, 05:14:51 PM »
Hallo Logan,

the Pentax forum mentioned by sdsr is a great resource. I started a thread here (http://www.canonrumors.com/forum/index.php?topic=21454.0) about the the SMC 50mm 1.4 M k-mount lens.


Additionally I have a SMC 135mm 2.5 in m42 mount that I find to be great. I believe the k-mount version has the same optical formula.

A possible problem with full frame Canons is mirror clearance. I had to modify my 50 to get it to work on my 6D. on APS-C I've had no problems on a 400D and 70D.

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Logan

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Re: Any old K-mount lenses worth getting?
« Reply #10 on: July 21, 2014, 10:27:52 AM »
thanks for the thoughtful replies, i will definitly look for that 135 f2 and a couple of the 35s

Jon Gilchrist

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Re: Any old K-mount lenses worth getting?
« Reply #11 on: July 21, 2014, 11:44:17 AM »
Olympus made a 35mm f2.8 (or maybe it's f3.5) shift lens. No tilt, just shift. I use it on my Canon dslrs reasonably often with an adapter. It's currently on the counter ready to go in my bag for an architectural shoot this afternoon.

e17paul

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Re: Any old K-mount lenses worth getting?
« Reply #12 on: July 21, 2014, 12:43:13 PM »
I have a Pentax 55/2 on my S1A. It is arguably better than my OM 50/1.4, and certainly better than either of the Canon 50s I have bought. I think that the only EF mount that may possibly compare would be a Zeiss.

Although my copy is M42 screw mount, it's also available with the 1975 onwards K-mount
http://www.pentaxforums.com/lensreviews/SMC-Pentax-K-50mm-F2-Lens.html
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Re: Any old K-mount lenses worth getting?
« Reply #12 on: July 21, 2014, 12:43:13 PM »