K-Mount Manual Lenses

8 years 10 months ago #52151 by Ray Radlein
I have a pair of old K-mount SLRs (one Pentax, one Ritz(!)) and a bunch of lenses and whatnot that I use for my 35mm film needs, but my main DSLR is an Olympus, for which I have a decent set of lenses and accessories.

However, I've been thinking, for quite a while now, that it would be nice to grab a used Pentax DSLR body from KEH or wherever, to use with all those old manual K-mount lenses I own.

Now, obviously, I understand that I would be surrendering a lot of the fancy features of the DSLR by using antiquated manual mechanical lenses; but, hey -- "film" is free, more or less! If it were to take me a few hundred shots of practice to get used to using dumb lenses with a smart camera body, then so be it.

Unfortunately, while the earliest Pentax DSLRs were quite explicit about the fact that they worked (in however crippled a fashion) with plain K-Mount lenses, some of the newer DSLR bodies only mention working with the slightly newer mounts (K-AF, K-AF2, IIRC, etc, etc). Is this just a situation where Pentax simply doesn't bother to mention K-Mount because they assume no one is going to be using a forty year old manual focus lens with a modern DSLR? Or are the newer DSLR bodies from Pentax actually incapable of using old manual lenses?

Has anybody tried anything like this?


Like I said, my main DSLR package is Olympus; that's where my major purchases go; but I think it would be kind of neat to be able to play around with all my old K-Mount lenses and equipment for digital use as a "second" DSLR, given how relatively less I'm using them all for 35mm film work these days.


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8 years 10 months ago #53929 by Todays Photos
Well that is really up to you. If you want a 2nd body, I say go for it. I have never tried what you want to do, but there is always a first for everything. It never hurts to have a 2nd body, especially when you already have the lenses.


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8 years 10 months ago #54127 by icepics
I thought the same thing, that older K mount lenses were supposed to work w/Pentax digital cameras. I don't have a digital Pentax but had thought about getting one so I wonder the same thing. Guess if it doesn't work, worst case scenario you'd end up having to buy a new Pentax lens to use w/the digital body. I'd probably not go w/anything Pentax that was too expensive so if nothing else I'd end up w/an extra digital camera and lens. I always had something as a back-up for film so I'd think about a Pentax digital myself for that purpose.

Sharon
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8 years 10 months ago #54368 by Ray Radlein
Well, already having the lenses only really helps if those lenses will work with the new body, which was what I was wondering. B)


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8 years 10 months ago #54371 by Screamin Scott
I don't shoot Pentax, but there are likely adapters out there that will work so that you can use the older lenses on their newer DSLR's After all, they made adapters so that you could use your old M42 lenses on a K mount body.... (I have some older Pentax & Yashica M42 gear as well as an Me Super)My DSLR gear is Nikon & I have used M42 lenses on Nikon with adapters...I was under the impression that Olympus cameras were 4/3rds & as such had adapters to fit a variety of different mounts to their mount...I could be mistaken though as I don't have any Oly gear except P&S cameras (digital & film)

Scott Ditzel Photography

www.flickr.com/photos/screaminscott/

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8 years 10 months ago #54374 by Screamin Scott
Oh & I shoot with a lot of older Nikon & 3rd party MF lenses from the 60's on on my Nikon DSLR...Like you say, I don't have the all of the amenities of using current gear when I use them (like no metering, not a big problem though) but I like the results I get & I got yesteryear's pro quality glass for mere peanuts...

Scott Ditzel Photography

www.flickr.com/photos/screaminscott/

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8 years 10 months ago #55713 by Unruely
I do shoot Pentax and I use my older MF lenes most of the time. The quality of the glass is superb! If you want to use the older m42 screw mount lenses you do need an adapter, very inexpensive! The K-mount lenses dont require anything to use with a modern DSLR. I have a K7, KX, & K20D. I use the older glass 10 times more than the newer ones. I prefer to manual focus anyway so I can decide what I want in focus, not the camera. These older lenses really work great attacehed to a new DSLR.


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8 years 10 months ago #57342 by icepics
Thanks for the info. I'm looking to find newer bodies/lenses that I can use w/older manual stuff I already have, and thought old and new Pentax were supposed to be compatible but wasn't sure. (Have an old MF KX and was thinking about a new digital KX). And have already bought a number of adapters as has been mentioned to use w/older screw mount lenses etc.

Sharon
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8 years 10 months ago #58259 by Yasko
All k-mount lenses from auto-K's to fully manuals fit right onto a modern Pentax DSLR with no adapter needed, so no problems there, you just won't be getting autofocus, and the oldest of the k mounts won't have auto aperature so you'll get a dimmed viewfinder when closing down the aperature rings.

I use a lot of old screwmounts and k-mounts on my modern Canon DSLR using an adapter. Pentax made some very fine glass. If your eyesight is still good, focusing those manual lenses without the splitscreen focuser gets easy with practice on your dslr.


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8 years 10 months ago #63007 by marosari00
I use manual lenses on my K7. I did upgrade the focusing screen to one with a microprism and split image. With the ability to use wide angles and setting these to their hyperfocal distance, it simplifies the focusing. :)


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8 years 10 months ago #71355 by Junglequeen
I used pentex film cameras with all the pentax old k mount lens. I bought my first pentex dslr and all the old lens fit just fine.


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8 years 10 months ago #72083 by icepics
Thanks for all the posts, your comments have been very helpful. I like to get something that goes with what I already have so it's good to know a new Pentax body will work fine w/older lenses. And w/my Lensbaby that's K-mount.

Sharon
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8 years 9 months ago #88553 by jenniderd
From what Pentax says, all of their lenses, including the M mount ones, can be use with the new DSLRs (backwards compatibility). I do that myself, and I actually just got out my 35mm prime yesterday and have a picture in my people gallery ( www.photographytalk.com/component/simgal...c=viewphoto&id=74653 ).

You do need an adaptor with the M (screw mount), but the K mount should go right on. One word of caution, especially with the manual lens on a DSLR body: You lose the old split prism focusing which is a real pain though I've heard that you can get a filter (?) or something or other to mimic that, and you can stop down (I don't typically), but it's got to be a feature on your lens to do this to see your DOF.

Other than those two things, it's just like using an old Pentax, you manually focus and go for it. Some of the glass is really awesome!


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