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Using Old Lenses
#1
Some time ago I bought an old Pentax SLR film camera very cheaply on eBay, and when it arrived it had a lens attached, a 28-50mm f/3.5-4.5 zoom - both camera and lens would be around 35 years old. I replaced the lens with a 50mm standard lens and ran a 24-shot film though the camera to see if it still worked, and I was pleased to discover that it was OK. However, the little zoom lens was left in a cupboard and forgotten about, until last week.

Pentax have been using the same design of lens mount since the 1970s - it is called the K-mount. The only changes have been due to the evolution of the connectors in the mount for aperture and focus control. Hence the old 28-50 zoom lens will fit perfectly on my Pentax K-5 DSLR but, obviously, it must be manually controlled. It makes a good standard zoom - equivalent to a 42-75mm on a full frame camera - so I took the combination with me on a stroll around Verulamium in St Albans.

   

   

   

   

   

I am pleasantly surprised by the results. So maybe this post might encourage those who have not already done so to try an old lens on a DSLR, if the camera body will allow it - some might not, others might, others might require an adapter.

Cheers.
Philip
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#2
(Apr 14, 2014, 17:46)MrB Wrote: Some time ago I bought an old Pentax SLR film camera very cheaply on eBay, and when it arrived it had a lens attached, a 28-50mm f/3.5-4.5 zoom - both camera and lens would be around 35 years old. I replaced the lens with a 50mm standard lens and ran a 24-shot film though the camera to see if it still worked, and I was pleased to discover that it was OK. However, the little zoom lens was left in a cupboard and forgotten about, until last week.

Pentax have been using the same design of lens mount since the 1970s - it is called the K-mount. The only changes have been due to the evolution of the connectors in the mount for aperture and focus control. Hence the old 28-50 zoom lens will fit perfectly on my Pentax K-5 DSLR but, obviously, it must be manually controlled. It makes a good standard zoom - equivalent to a 42-75mm on a full frame camera - so I took the combination with me on a stroll around Verulamium in St Albans.











I am pleasantly surprised by the results. So maybe this post might encourage those who have not already done so to try an old lens on a DSLR, if the camera body will allow it - some might not, others might, others might require an adapter.

Cheers.
Philip

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#3
Hi Mr B not surprise at your post. It has long been claimed by Pentax that all their lens will work with all there body's and is one of the reason I have stuck with them since the 1970's Although my main lens are the new wr series I also use an F1.4 50mm and a 100mm to 300 mm power zoom dating from the days of the z1 film camera on my K5. These lens are fully functional apart for trap mode on the 100-300 zoom. The only problem was with filters, as those designed to work with film degrade digital photos. But you can replace these at a relatively small cost. regards old hack
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#4
I was annoyed when I went digital from my old Canon A1 camera, that the old lenses could not be used with the new digital bodies, as with Pentax. However, I persevered, and found a company in the UK called SRB-Griturn, who manufacture, among a lot of photographic stuff, adaptors for Canon (and other makes) to enable old 35mm lenses to be used on digital cameras. You have to use the lens in manual mode, but the results have been great! If interested, take a look at www.srb-photographic.co.uk
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#5
Another old Pentax film era manual lens - this time it's a 135mm prime on a Pentax K-5 II DSLR. The photos were taken on Wednesday (16/04/14) at Stowe Landscape Gardens, near Buckingham. Distances given are rough estimates.

1.The wooden bridge across the lake, about 90m away:
   
[f/8, 1/160, ISO 200]

2. The Palladian Bridge, about 120m away:
   
[f/8, 1/400, ISO 400]

3. The Gothic Temple, about 400m, and Cobham's Pillar, about 700m:
   
[f/8, 1/400, ISO 400]

Cheers.
Philip
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#6
Terrific. Lovely shots. Ruth
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#7
Thank you, Ruth.

Philip
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#8
Beautiful captures; excellent series!!
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#9
I would expect the results to be good, see no reason why they should be otherwise. ABOUT 90% of my pics posted here were taken, using a 30+ year old 28-200 Tamron, initially bought 2nd hand, for Minolta 7000i. The auto focus no longer works, OK manually, but I replaced with 18- 200mm Digital version, see no improvement really. Ed.
To each his own!
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#10
Jeff - thank you for your comment.

Ed - I agree with you. This thread is simply to raise awareness of that, because there will be some folk who don't realise that those old lenses might still be usable on a DSLR. Also, if they don't already own any, old lenses can often be found in great condition, at a tiny fraction of the cost of modern ones, and yield comparable results.

E.g. That 135mm lens in post #5 cost only £35 on eBay - it is beautifully constructed, with a built-in/slide-out metal hood, and it looks and works like brand new:

   

Cheers.
Philip
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#11
(May 9, 2014, 05:19)MrB Wrote: Jeff - thank you for your comment.

Ed - I agree with you. This thread is simply to raise awareness of that, because there will be some folk who don't realise that those old lenses might still be usable on a DSLR. Also, if they don't already own any, old lenses can often be found in great condition, at a tiny fraction of the cost of modern ones, and yield comparable results.

E.g. That 135mm lens in post #5 cost only £35 on eBay - it is beautifully constructed, with a built-in/slide-out metal hood, and it looks and works like brand new:



Cheers.
Philip

Over the Years I have bought a number of MZ50's. most came with lenses and they work quite well with my Samsung Digital SLR, (which utilises the old 'k' style mount).

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#12
These photos are of Wrest Park in Bedfordshire, taken last week using an early autofocus lens - the Pentax-F 35-70mm f/3.5-4.5 zoom, about 25 years old - another eBay bargain in very good condition.

1. Wrest Park Mansion House

   

2. The Lake and Pavilion

   

Both were taken with a Pentax K-5 II, on which this lens focuses very quickly and accurately, and they were processed in PaintShop Pro X6.

Cheers.
Philip
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#13
(Jun 20, 2014, 03:45)MrB Wrote: These photos are of Wrest Park in Bedfordshire, taken last week using an early autofocus lens - the Pentax-F 35-70mm f/3.5-4.5 zoom, about 25 years old - another eBay bargain in very good condition.

1. Wrest Park Mansion House



2. The Lake and Pavilion



Both were taken with a Pentax K-5 II, on which this lens focuses very quickly and accurately, and they were processed in PaintShop Pro X6.

Cheers.
Philip
I come from Bedford, and I don't remember West Park, (mind you, the last time I was in Bedford I did'nt know they'd moved the Midland station and I had a helluva job!).

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#14
Wrest Park is at the village of Silsoe, along the A6, about half-way between Luton and Bedford. It is an English Heritage property and, as you can see, it is well worth a visit - plenty of parking and a very good visitors' centre.

Cheers.
Philip
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#15
(Jun 20, 2014, 06:46)MrB Wrote: Wrest Park is at the village of Silsoe, along the A6, about half-way between Luton and Bedford. It is an English Heritage property and, as you can see, it is well worth a visit - plenty of parking and a very good visitors' centre.

Cheers.
Philip

Thanks for the info. Philip, my relatives still live in Dunstable, so I visit occasionally. I was, in fact, born in Dunstable. (Mind you, when people ask, I seldom say I was born in Beds - it's too confusing!!!!!)
Ron
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#16
A couple more from Wrest Park, also taken with the old Pentax 35-70 lens.

3. The Orangery

   

4. The View from the Orangery

   

Cheers.
Philip
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#17
(Jun 20, 2014, 12:35)MrB Wrote: A couple more from Wrest Park, also taken with the old Pentax 35-70 lens.

3. The Orangery



4. The View from the Orangery



Cheers.
Philip

Good Shots Philip,
Many thanks for the post - I really should get out more!!!!!!!!
Ron

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#18
All extremely picturesque Philip. Ed.
To each his own!
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#19
Thank you Ron and Ed. Visiting such wonderful places is a pleasurable retirement pastime, and photographing them adds to that enjoyment. Smile

Cheers.
Philip
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#20
(Jun 21, 2014, 12:13)MrB Wrote: Thank you Ron and Ed. Visiting such wonderful places is a pleasurable retirement pastime, and photographing them adds to that enjoyment. Smile

Cheers.
Philip

Glad you enjoyed it Philip, - that's what it's all about!!!!!!


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#21
Hi Philip,

I've only just latched on to this topic. Must say, absolutely superb images you've achieved with these lenses.

Best regards.

Phil.
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#22
Thank you, Phil. It does seem that there are lots of good quality old film lenses, available at little cost, that work very well for digital imaging.

Cheers.
Philip
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#23
(Jun 21, 2014, 06:04)Lateron Wrote:
(Jun 20, 2014, 12:35)MrB Wrote: A couple more from Wrest Park, also taken with the old Pentax 35-70 lens.

3. The Orangery



4. The View from the Orangery



Cheers.
Philip

Good Shots Philip,
Many thanks for the post - I really should get out more!!!!!!!!
Ron

Having a couple of old Pentax lenses myself, I'm sorely tepted to try!
Ron

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#24
Go for it, Ron - you've nothing to lose with digital, except a bit of your time!

Any K mount Pentax lens will work on any Pentax K digital body, or their Samsung GX equivalents which also have a K mount - just connect the lens and carry on, as follows:
The F and FA series lenses will auto-focus, but for older lenses use manual focusing - the camera still gives confirmation when correctly focused (it beeps, and also shows the green hexagon in the viewfinder).
When the camera is switched on with an older lens attached, it will ask for the focal length to be entered - this is so that the image stabilisation will work optimally for that lens.
If the lens has an A on the aperture ring, on that setting it will just work normally via the camera controls, in any of the shooting modes.
If it does not have the A setting:- In the camera menus make sure that Using Aperture Ring is Permitted. Set the mode dial to M-Mode and turn the aperture ring to set the desired aperture - in the other modes, the lens will always stay wide open. On models with a green button, pressing it while composing the shot, will set the metered shutter speed for the chosen aperture and ISO. (If no green button, see the camera's User Guide for how to get the light metering values.)

All the best.
Philip
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#25
(Jun 25, 2014, 14:29)MrB Wrote: Go for it, Ron - you've nothing to lose with digital, except a bit of your time!

Any K mount Pentax lens will work on any Pentax K digital body, or their Samsung GX equivalents which also have a K mount - just connect the lens and carry on, as follows:
The F and FA series lenses will auto-focus, but for older lenses use manual focusing - the camera still gives confirmation when correctly focused (it beeps, and also shows the green hexagon in the viewfinder).
When the camera is switched on with an older lens attached, it will ask for the focal length to be entered - this is so that the image stabilisation will work optimally for that lens.
If the lens has an A on the aperture ring, on that setting it will just work normally via the camera controls, in any of the shooting modes.
If it does not have the A setting:- In the camera menus make sure that Using Aperture Ring is Permitted. Set the mode dial to M-Mode and turn the aperture ring to set the desired aperture - in the other modes, the lens will always stay wide open. On models with a green button, pressing it while composing the shot, will set the metered shutter speed for the chosen aperture and ISO. (If no green button, see the camera's User Guide for how to get the light metering values.)

All the best.
Philip

Thanks Philip,
It certainly looks as if I must try it!!!!!!
Ron

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