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Modern Classic SLRs Series :
Pentax LX - Message Board/Guestbook

Industry wide indications and ceasing film body development by Pentax altogether in early 2003 more than suggest the manual focus Pentax LX will not be having an upgrade (except, perhaps for very rare Limited Edition Models hand assembled by special commission by the new HoyaPentax Corporation). In 2008 Pentax became a division of Hoya Corporation, which had together with Pentax released jointly developed professional grade optics (since 2005); Pentax has shifted its attention to development of auto focus Digital SLRs having build qualities constructed for the long run--now with weather seals--like the LX. You may use this site for common support and sharing of mutual users knowledge or experiences among yourselves. You may also use this message board as a guestbook for the advanced users Pentax SLR cameras from the LX forward, including many such auto focus film cameras, and Pentax digital SLR cameras. We keep the site going too for the WORD SEARCH FEATURE found here as to its magnificent K mount system user archives: as have been shared here for many years. Have an inquiry related to Pentax gear? First try KEYING IN YOUR KEY WORD(S) for a preexisting archived response on your subject of inquiry from this LX site. If your inquiry or sharing is from advanced users K10D, K20D, or K200D SLR needs, proceed on to t NEW PENTAX ADVANCED USERS K10D, K20D SLR site.

This LX site was specifically created for the great Pentax LX SLR camera model(s), and now has incorporated increased opportunity for an expanded interchange with the introductions of the Pentax K10D, K20D, and K200D SLRs to include advanced and professional digital user models. Interchange is encouraged with the intention to continue as a forum for advanced system users of past K-mount film based SLR systems and the mentioned Pentax DSLRs. With decreasing forum traffic here, and enthusiasts moving on with SLR digital imaging products futures, we hope the continued convenience of this site and its past Pentax advanced LX users data archives--provided by the database KEY WORD SEARCH FEATURE found here--can be very useful to you. Most past site user techniques, systems components, and lenses of Pentax advanced applications--as have been past examined by users on this site--are still of use regarding the newest Pentax SLRs. Please don't mail us with other than constructive suggestions or to rectify mistakes found within this site, thank you. Since this is a non-profitable resource site, maintained by professional and advanced system users, the developer of this site reserves the rights to censor or delete any inappropriate, unrelated, misleading or excessively hostile messages posted herein. If your intention is to dispose of your Pentax cameras or its accompanying accessories and/or you are looking for a used model, or even for any of its system components: please use a separate section with a higher volume of related traffic for these purposes: on the
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1. From : Mico (
Url : http://
Date : 07:25 AM Thursday 09 October, 2003

Ian, to be 100% sure your LX meters properly on Manual mode (AUTO seems to be fine) try this: take Kodak "Gray Card", put an even indoor light on it. Do not go outside, light can change in miliseconds, and your eyes can not register the difference. Than, take your LX, MX (with 50mm lens,from minimum focusing distance) and reliable (Silicon photo diode) hand-held light meter.Measure light with each camera (and the same 50mm lens) from the tripod to maintain the same angle and position. After that take a REFLECTED reading with the ligh meter. All results should be the same. Ideal situation is to have another LX for the test, but...Maybe your MX is not calibrated properly? One of mine MX`s, many years ago, was factoru misscalibrated for 1/2 F stop.It just happens. M.

2. From : Robert Clark (
Url : http://
Date : 03:32 AM Thursday 09 October, 2003

Hi Ian, I'm glad the LX is gradually working out for you and you don't need to take Jay's Hartless advice and pass a problem on to some unsuspecting buyer on ebay. Talk about expedient pragmatism. When you sell something on ebay or wherever, Jay, you are making a new contract AND dealing with another human being. Think about it.

3. From : Ian (
Url : http://
Date : 01:00 AM Thursday 09 October, 2003

What the hell was I thinking! OF COURSE UNprocessed film is gray/beige and therefore reflects light for the meter etc. Boy do I feel stupid. And yes, there's no problem with this cameras metering. I dug up an old roll of film that I never exposed (would you believe Kodak 2475 recording film), and the LX is now performing correctly. What a relief!!!! Sorry about all the wasted time on this subject. I should of just trusted the test film results. For now I'll live with the failing mirror lock. DOF and timer are fully functional. One lives and learns. Thanks for the help again. Ian.

4. From : Jay Hart (
Url : http://
Date : 10:09 PM Wednesday 08 October, 2003

Ian, THe sixth line in my previous posting should read "probability". As for faking film, just buy a cheap roll of 12 exposure brand X, here called store brand film. Keep it for other future testing of things like winding, the guides, the sprockets, etc. When you rewind it leave the tongue out. --Jay

5. From : Ian (
Url : http://
Date : 09:09 PM Wednesday 08 October, 2003

Jay, thanks for the info. SN 5 277xxx. It has 3200 dial, meter on from EV lock button, but earlier shutter blind (no dots missing). I'd guess at 1985. Can anyone suggest a way of faking film so I can test the meter readout further. I've tried various bits of processed film in it (both clear and black). I seem to be getting very nearly the same results as no film (the camera "shoots" at longer exposure than the meter suggests - 2 to 3 stops). Also, the viewfinder read-out shows approx. one stop out when compared to my MX. I'll be testing it more thoroughly later today if I get time. Thanks, Ian.

6. From : Jay Hart (
Url : http://
Date : 11:02 AM Wednesday 08 October, 2003

Ian, The mirror lock-up, self timer, DOF control--on the LX as one control--is attached from inside the body, and does loosen up after some years of use. Only a repair person can deal with the reattachment. If they do so sometime ask them to cement in the new screw in addition to screwing it in. Sorry you are having some adjustment difficulties. If you did not pay much for the body you can sell it--as a used car dealer might, at auction (ethics?, well you are just passing on someone else's ethics, as presented to you). Then you can cruse for another unit. Two switches on the light meter, limited wear on the body and paint, asking the seller to test and fully report on various functions, if not done by yourself--these ensure a little less probably of this or that not working well. A maintained or past respected LX should last as Globetrotter has reported of his used body decades of professional response. I bought two new, one preowned. I view "preowned" as different than "used", including indications of its care. All units purchased were with the later ISO dial, later shutter curtain, and later light meter switching. Only one has required sticky mirror repair, after being about 16 years of age FYI.

What you now choose to do is up to you, but I would take a detached giant step back and see what is involved, then decide what is the simplist route to get back from the system what you put into it. I keep my cameras clean, adjusted, and in cases, even though they have signs of use, hence they are "preowned" by me for the next user, whenever that will be. --Jay

7. From : Ian (
Url : http://
Date : 09:05 AM Wednesday 08 October, 2003

Mico, I just tried again, and I've confirmed what you said about the 3 stops. So thats a relief! I guess I need to pump some more film to confirm that it's OK. Wow!, I really love this FC-1 finder. It's so cool! Even if I have to dump/repair this body I'm keeping the FB-1/FC-1 (for the next body). More bad news! I tested the mirror lock in the shop, it was fine. I was wrong, it's failing to "bite". I have to do it several times to get it to hold-up and lock. Oh well, it's old and it's done some work (loads I would guess). I just hope the meter turns out OK. I can get the body serviced, thats not a problem, other than time. I feel very close to a functional LX, which is all I wanted. Here's hoping. All comments welcome, and thanks again Mico.

8. From : Ian (
Url : http://
Date : 06:38 AM Wednesday 08 October, 2003

Mico, don't apologise for spelling mistakes, it's absolutely fine (and I'm not insulted in any capacity, so don't worry about that either). No, the MX thing was simply that I'm used to the great 1/2 stop (1/4 stop - two light) feature on the MX. It's a shame that the LX doesn't have the same ability, thats all. If it can do the "two light" thing and I can read half stops, thats more than good enough for me. I'm actually more interested in it's auto ability, and I really like it's centre-weighting pattern too. The very long exposure OTF metering is what I admire about this camera (I love LX's). I can readily put up with the manual metering issue. I just had a conversation with my friend Mike (I was discussing the metering discrepancy issue). He said "hey! it did that when you were doing the exposure test the other day, WITH film!" I don't clearly remember. I was calling out shutter speeds/apertures etc. and he was noting them down for me (for when I got the film back from processing). So, I'm somewhat concerned now. If, like you suggest it's just a film thing, thats cool, but if it's a calibration issue? What's involved, and can I get to the pots? (I presume it's potentiometers). Oh, and thanks for your rapid response. Ian.

9. From : Mico (
Url : http://
Date : 05:26 AM Wednesday 08 October, 2003

Ian, if you are talking about AUTO speeds and not having the film loaded, yes, it can be three and more F.stops difference than what meter displays. This is normal, so if you see 1/8 sec. in the finder, shutter will probably fire something arround 1sec.Longer shutter speed means more noticeable discrepancy in shutter speed.

If you are talking about the same, but with film loaded, it could be miscalibrated meter. That does not affect AUTO speeds since each function (meter/auto speeds) has separate calibration point. That can be fixed, fairly easy. Is that the reason why you said "...LX is not as close accurate as MX..."?
Also, sorry for spelling error in my last posting, it should read "bear" not "bare", and regarding the context, it may even sound as an insult.I should not post my mesages after midnight... M.

10. From : Ian (
Url : http://
Date : 04:46 AM Wednesday 08 October, 2003

I really don't want to be asking the following question, I'd rather believe my shiny new (ok, battered and dented) LX is working perfectly. I've discovered that in automatic the shutter does not fire at the indicated speed. All the manual speeds are fine (as best I can tell). Example: If the camera suggests that it will expose at 1/8 of a second, when the shutter is fired, I get say, 1/2 second. The film I tested showed what appeared to be perfectly exposed frames at any light level (automatic mode). This is strange, and at first I presumed that it was because there was no film in the camera and therefore the actual light readings were slightly different (between mirror down and mirror up readings etc). But there can be quite a difference between the two, nearly as much as three stops (this is not an issue of rapidly changing lighting conditions). Please tell me theres a rational explanation for this, and all your LX's do it too. Many thanks.

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