Will M42 lenses fit dital Pentax?

Discussion in 'Photography Equipment & Products' started by andrewcollier, Dec 17, 2008.

  1. andrewcollier

    andrewcollier TPF Noob!

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    A friends daughter is choosing a DSLR for her 15th birthday and I suggested the 1000D or D60 as her best choices, and she is leaning towards the D60 now.

    I have just read about the Pentax K-M, being the same entry level, but with the advantage of in camera IS and some other promising features. I am suggesting this may be a better choice for her, as I am sure I read M42 lenses will fit Pentax digital with an adapter. Whilst M42 lenses may not yield the best IQ in many cases they will be quite adequate and very affordable if she looked in the right places.

    Any thoughts appreciated.
     
  2. Rtm1216

    Rtm1216 TPF Noob!

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    You are correct. You can purchase an adapter ring that will allow you to use an M42 lens. It will be manual focus and you have will need to change a setting in the menu options to allow it. Its very easy to do.

    The Pentax system is great. I enjoy mine and I've found a lot of great M42 manual lenses on ebay at great prices. For a beginner I don't think you can go wrong with this type of set-up.
     
  3. elemental

    elemental TPF Noob!

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    I'm not sure about the sub-par image quality. Compared to modern entry-level lenses (kit zooms), many of the old lenses are much higher quality. Not only are they sharper, (usually) faster, and better optically than that horrible 18-55 f/3.5-5.6, they are built worlds better and just feel natural in the hand. I don't have any M42 lenses on my K100D yet, but I love using old K-mount SMC M lenses, which mount right up.

    As for the adapter, the poorly-made ones can get stuck in the camera or prevent one from focusing to infinity, so she should seek out a genuine Pentax-brand adapter if she can. You'll pay a little more, but I'm told it's well worth it. If she uses the manual focus lenses often, a split focusing screen could be a good addition. They're coming out of Asia for about $30 now, and they make manual focusing much easier than the matte screen that comes stock (which is generally used for autofocus lenses).

    Pentax is the absolute leader in back-compatibility with their lenses. Lenses all the way back to the '50s will mount up with a simple adapter, and the stop-down metering (assuming it's unchanged from the K100D) makes it incredibly easy to use non auto-aperture lenses. The K-M does have some excellent features for its category, particularly (in my opinion) the lens compatibility and the IS. It's great to have lenses that are almost 60 that can use IS. She won't get that with a D60.
     
  4. usayit

    usayit No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Yes they do! From the standpoint of a Pentax collector, its darn fun to shoot with old lenses on a newer DSLR.

    I have a Sumsung GX-1L which is essentially a Pentax *ist DL2. With an adapter, I had to make a few changes to the camera's settings to make it work seemlessly with M42 and manual K-mount lenses. Nothing too difficult.. once set you leave it.. and it still works fine with Pentax AF lenses.

    The following is a clip from an old posting of mine that had the settings I needed to set.

    "* All my old lenses work Both K and KA even though the camera sepecifically mentions only KA and KAF. There are few settings that got the manual k-mounts without the "A" setting on the aperture work. 1) "AE-L on M expr" needs to be set to 2 to allow the "AE-L" button function as the stop-down metering in aperture priority. 2) "Use Aperture ring" has to be set to 2 to allow you to use lenses even though they are not set in the "A" setting. 3) Move the switch from "AF" to "M" or else the camera will try to focus prior to letting you trip the shutter. 4) The camera has to be set to full "M" manual mode. Once you set 1 and 2, you can leave it that way even though you switching between AF lenses and Manual K-mounts. Once all set, you basically focus, set your aperture via the lens ring, hit AE-L (stops down and sets shutter), and then press the shutter. Works pretty seemlessly. I got a kick out of mounting my older screw mount M42 lenses too."
     
  5. Johnboy2978

    Johnboy2978 No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    You can find some really great deals on older manual pentax lenses which are tack sharp. Many people really thumb their nose at Pentax, but they have some world class glass on the high end as well. I recently bought the 77mm limited f/1.8 and it is so sweet; full metal construction including the lens cap and is smooth as butter. Zeiss also makes some phenominal glass in the pentax mount. But yeah, with the adapter, you can can use all those screw mount lenses as well as any other lens they've ever made. Go Pentax!
     
  6. Battou

    Battou No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    ... Since the original question has been answered I won't go into that but I will be a jerk and say this.

    the M-42 mount is not a Pentax mount, it's actually a Zeiss Ikon mount. ;) the only reason people think it's a Pentax mount is because Pentax made the widest line of M-42 lenses.
     
  7. usayit

    usayit No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Zeiss Contax

    No one said "Pentax M42 mount"... .and yes.. Pentax took it and ran with it. I think they deserve a lot for that.

    Supposedly Leica invented AF... but sold the technology as if it was "unnecessary" What an oversight! A decision they are paying for even today.
     
  8. Battou

    Battou No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I know, I just felt like being a jerk. After doing a metric butt ton of research I felt the need.

    www.photo-lucidity.com :: View topic - M42 mount (Pentax screw mount) Information
     
  9. Dubious Drewski

    Dubious Drewski TPF Noob!

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    I can completely attest to this. I have a few photographs where I was capturing subjects that had ultra-fine details with my Asahi 50mm and when viewing the resulting image in photoshop, I noticed that the lens had completely and clearly outresolved the camera's sensor. In the hair on one of my subjects, zooming in 100%, I could see a perfect pixel stepladder effect. It was beyond 100% sharp.

    That is why my manual 50mm is my baby.
     
  10. usayit

    usayit No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    i know... just pulling yah chain... hehehe

    It is amazing just how many cameras adopted that mount....

    My latest addition to M42 takumar collection:
    [​IMG]

    I have my sights on an 85mm f/1.9 and 500mm f/4.5.
     
  11. Battou

    Battou No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    ...I can't for the life of me remember what my last addition in M42 was....prolly another 50mm or a 55mm, But I do know my favorite and that is my Bushnell 200mm 3.5. Thing confused the tar out of me in the beginning but holy wow it is an awesome lens.

    [​IMG]
     
  12. Stratman

    Stratman TPF Noob!

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    Here is my K10D with a Super Takumar 55mm f1.8 attached, I LOVE using the Taks on my digital. Don't let anyone fool you, these Taks are DAMN good lenses. And they are built like tanks !! make sure you buy the Genuine Pentax M42 to K mount adapter, it is by far the best one out there, and very easy to install and remove.

    [​IMG]

    and a few images I have taken with my Takumars.

    Super Tak 35mm F3.5..

    [​IMG]

    Super Multi Coated Takumar 200mm F4

    [​IMG]

    Super Takumar 55mm F1.8

    [​IMG]

    Super Takumar 28mm F3.5

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2008

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