Friday, August 19, 2011

Pentax ME







Pentax ME
Fuji Superia 200 35mm film
SMC Pentax-M 50mm f/1.7 lens
See the rest of the photos on Flickr

If you remember my camera collection post not so long ago you may also remember my Pentax ME.  I love it not only because it looks a bit like a Fuji X100 (or perhaps, the Fuji X100 looks like it), but also because it was gifted to me by my Poppy when he found out that I was into film photography - one of the few benefits of having relatives on Facebook. When I first tried to test this camera there was film inside that had been inside about 4 years, and I discovered with much despair that the film was not advancing. So I left it a few months and tried again the other day. Clearly, success!!

I am reasonably happy with the quality of the photos, but I think there is more practice needed on my part too. Some bright areas have halos/reflects, you can see this a little around the cat's white feet, but there are definitely pictures where this is far worst. I'm guessing in these situations that decreasing the aperture would do the trick, because I had it on 1.7 the entire time. Which is fine when it's a test roll - keeping one variable constant makes critiquing much easier. Since this camera is from the late 1970's I shouldn't expect miracles either. A camera this old gives that vintage vibe to the photos.

For anyone who may be looking at this article as a review/reference to buying a Pentax ME here's the lowdown. The first thing you need to know is that this a heavy, heavy camera. I mean it. It's made of metal and thick mirrors, and thick glass in the lens; so it's not happy-go-luck-take-anywhere sort of camera. It's not heavy to pick up, but your shoulder may feel it if you're not wearing a backpack. Having said that, most vintage SLRs are probably reasonably weighted. One good point is that it's way cheaper than a Canon AE-1, lenses are cheap and easy to find, and there's certainly nothing wrong with this camera. This is a manual focus camera; every time you want to take a picture you have to twist the lens to focus. Time consuming, and not great for spontaneity, but advantageous in certain situations. Like me you've probably taken pictures on your digital camera thinking everything was good only to get home and realise that every single shot is out of focus because the camera decided where it wanted to focus. Manual focus means it's all in your control. I find this a nice feature for portraits and flowers.

In conclusion, it was a fun camera to use. I love the vintage photos and I'm glad I own this camera. I was so excited that the film had advanced that I got it developed at the on-site, quicker, slightly more expensive shop.

This is the best article I have found on this camera. Please click through if you would like to know more about this camera.

Pentax ME manual

Edit: I've researched a few more features on this camera and I've made several mistakes such as setting the wrong ASA (I was unsure how to move the wheel - lift and twist!), and there are a few little handy hints on the exposure that I can use now to control shutter speed.

25 comments:

  1. Gorgeous pictures, love how soft they are xo

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  2. this ws my first time where i used film and i'm so in love with it! I love how they turn so retro. ntaw, thank you so much!

    wooow! It sounds so expensives, i don't know how much australian dollars is worth now compared to norwegian but it sounds very very expensives. I think i payed around 1800kr all together for three days of festival and a camping ticket which included breakfast - i considered it very cheap. Really? Could you send me the link where you bought it? it sounds so cool to have one instead of buy one single used all the time, and it's getting expensive too, i payed like fiftheen american dollars at one film.. fml.

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  3. Ohmy, thank you for helping me! devolping films in norway is so friggin expensive! I think I payed around 30 dollars for two one single use cameras to get the pictures on cd. urgh, i hate norway sometimes..
    Anyway, maybe i should get a holga from urban outfitters? they seem so easy, but do you think that they will get same as disposiable camera?

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  4. oh man i love these. the focus is amazing. and i love seeing your camera and photography obsessed expand.

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  5. Well These are Lovely Pictures, I Just Loved the Way that you have shot these Fantastic Pictures with innovation and creativity!!

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  6. Manual focus is so hard! I really need to practice but haven't found the time. Seeing all these film photos makes me want a film camera!

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  7. Awww cute photos!!!! :)
    Check out my blog....

    xo Emma

    www.fromcitytocity-emm.blogspot.com

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  8. I love that shot of the flowers, there are so many of them in bloom now and they are so gorgeous!

    I just thought to link you this Etsy seller that I bought my swim suit from in case you're interested, seeing as it will be beach time soon :)

    http://www.etsy.com/shop/FablesbyBarrie?ref=pr_shop_more

    Isn't their shop dreamy?

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  9. ooo! really gorgeous photos! :) Kim

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  10. Cute pics!

    http://initialed.blogspot.com

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  11. Please do more of these sort of reviews if you have the chance! I'm sort of in love with film photography but keep forgetting to dust off my film camera and buy some film. Gorgeous photos

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  12. goddammit i want a cat!

    thank you so much for the thoughful heartfelt comment on my post about me boy troubles xo


    // VISIT MY BLOG - ZEBRA AND MEERKAT //
    // FOLLOW ME ON TWITTER //

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  13. The cat photos are so sweet, lovely job!
    xxx

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  14. Your blog is beautiful. I love the photography! Reminds me of home.

    gilead in bloom

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  15. Amazing pics...Love them all.:D

    xxx

    Angie

    P.S:chasingkitesbyangie.blogspot.com
    Don't bother to pass by anytime..:)

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  16. such beautiful photographs, your blog is soo lovely by the ways, i will be visiting it again very soon :)


    New outfit post today, check it out!
    http://haveapeekinsidemywardrobe.blogspot.com/
    xxxxx

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  17. cute pics, love the vintage feel here!
    http://vanessalu91.blogspot.com

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  18. These images are just gorgeous. Love the kitties!!!

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  19. aw! I love your vintage photos, and I love how that dog seems to be submissive and smiling :)

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  20. These are lovely images. I used to use a pentax me during my college days and still regret parting with it.

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  21. you took some great photos ! Would love to own this jewel of a camera :)

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I read everyone's comments!!
:D