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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 : 01:58 AM Thursday 02 March, 2006

My apologize to BOZIDAR Dimitrov and others here for miss-speling his name. M.

2. From : Mico (
Url : http://
Date : 01:49 AM Thursday 02 March, 2006

Anton, you are right, maybe we have too much digital stuff here, but it seems to be the trend in photography and it is not easy to ignore it. So, on the subject, my latest LX was sold brand new to me in the mid-summer of 1991 and has the serial number 5343***. The other closest to it was probably made in 1988-1989 and has the serial 5324***. So, not such a big increase in two or three years. I do not think that Pentax had produced a lot of new LX bodies in the mid and late 90`s and sales numbers were also small. Price was way too high (3000DM in Germany and cca. 1800US)and only a handful of people opted for a brand new LX. What may be the case with your body, if the number is correct, is that bottom cover was replaced at some point. This is just my guess but such "renewed" bottom covers should have been recognized by different serial numbers.
Jay, I know that Boris Dimitrov is using Canon since 2002 and he had wrote a long posting on PDML site explaining why he had gave up Pentax after all these years. Since photography is not his livelihood, I think his cause was more in the lens choice than Pentax`s DSLR body issue. He did a comparison test with Canon 10D and original *IST-D being quite positive on the later one. Fact is that most of the Pentax lenses we are talking about here are 10 and more years old, and Canon is introducing (and upgrading) its lens line on the regular basis. Pentax`s Limited Edition lens line is exception, but has a limited focal length range and is quite expensive challenging even Canon`s "L" lenses. For years I have been waiting for the good 70-200/4.0 (ED-IF-etc.) zoom from Pentax and it is still not there...Last one, SMC-A 70-210/4.0 was introduced way back in 1984! This is fine lens, but not as good as Canon`s one, I can testify having both of them. But, did you know that Boz still have one LX and a couple of selected Pentax lenses? M.

3. From : Jay (
Url : http://
Date : 11:07 AM Wednesday 01 March, 2006

Mico, You will be interested in knowing that the KMP site maintainer/author, a scientist, lives near Hamburg, Germany, and shoots almost exclusively the Canon 10D (because he likes the optics). --Jay

4. From : AB (
Url : http://
Date : 08:33 AM Wednesday 01 March, 2006

I recently posted to the PDML seeking information about LX serial numbers and there was not one single response! The list is awash with *istD stuff and speculation about the new higher end digital SLR. Maybe my post was un-inviting or maybe it's a sign of the times.

I still await my 5360*** but I begin to wonder as someone is selling a 'new old stock' LX without prism claiming it is one of the last and the serial number is 534**** 5360 seems to be a long way past that. Maybe my serial number is wrong or maybe Pentax skipped a few or maybe the other guy has got it wrong. Hopefully all will become clear before too long. I vote for the build of the K's and the A*'s AB

Url :
Date : 05:13 PM Monday 27 February, 2006

Yes, Jay and Mico are right about the superb SMC coatings.

Another thing that I hate is the build quality of most recent lenses. I just hate the plastic! The old SMC, SMC-M, and SMC-A* lenses were built to a different standard than most modern units. The same can be said about the older Nikkor Ai & Ais lenses compared to most of the modern AF Nikkors, or the Canon FD lenses compared to the latest EF models. I could even say the same about some of the Sigma models, and in fact one of my favourites is the 180mm F/2.8 APO Macro, which was built of solid metal and far better than the latest EX 180 f/3.5 Macro model.

All this talk about older SMC optics is making me nostalgic! I might even be tempted to buy another LX & manual focus SMC 28mm f/2 lens just for the sheer joy of holding one and obtaining some wonderful scenic images from them...And with so many people selling absolutely stunning, old, but pro-level lenses on Ebay at ridiculous low prices (in their rush to offload film gear in pursuit of digital) I just can't resist a bargain!

6. From : Mico (
Url : http://
Date : 01:23 PM Monday 27 February, 2006

Pentax`s SMC coating, of ANY generation, is what I really miss on my Canon optics. When I compare my old SMC-A 70-210/4.0 with the latest Canon 70-200/4.0 L, there is much less reflection from the Pentax one. But, Canon is sharper... Also, SMC-F(FA)50/1.7 is so much superior to the Canon`s 50/1.8 MK I (MK II is a plastic toy)in both build quality and coating, that I am tempted to hand-made some kind of adaptor to use it on my 20D. Comparing Pentax`s FA 28/2.8 AL coating with any Canon prime in the same range (except maybe "L" line) is just not fair.
Shooting directly into the light source gave me pretty ugly internal reflections on Canon`s 17-40/4 L, something I have never experienced with the Pentax`s "cheapo" SMC-F 28-80/3.5-4.5

7. From : Jay (
Url : http://
Date : 02:23 AM Monday 27 February, 2006

Well, Tony, good to know. The results on your site are certainly not as color faithful, nor as contrast compensating as your earlier 24mm FA SMC aspherical results there. So, even the DG coatings are not as pristine as SMC. I was at a Sigma Pro dealer yesterday, who mentioned that even the DG coatings had become less reflective than those he had on hand a year or so ago. Good that they work toward improving their act on an ongoing basis. I strongly advocate readers here looking at the site prior to making any lens purchase whatsoever. --Jay

Url :
Date : 07:14 PM Sunday 26 February, 2006

Jay - the images that you mention on my website were NOT taken with the earlier Sigma lens, but were taken with the latest EX range.

I use both the Sigma EX 24mm f/1.8 DG Macro and the Sigma EX 28mm f/1.8 DG Macro. Both are superb performers and have provied me with many published photos wordwide, including front covers, so I'm well pleased, considering how cheap they are to buy.
No other lens provides the option to focus so close as these two lenses, and they provide spectacular images when used for ground-level macro subjects.

The Nikkor AF 28mm f/1.4 and MF 28mm f/2, and 24mm f/2.8 are great lenses, but unfortunately do not focus as close as the Sigma.

The earlier non-DX Sigma 24mm f/1.8 is not such a good performer as the latest EX-DG Macro range, but still can be nice performer at mid-range apertures.

As much as I like using the Sigma 24mm f/1.8 DG Macro lens, the Pentax FA 24mm F/2 lens is still one of my all-time favourites.

9. From : Jay (
Url : http://
Date : 02:02 AM Sunday 26 February, 2006

Forum, If you are considering new lens purchases, especially zooms, note that most lens coatings have pleasantly changed to work in concert with the color fidelity of Digital Sensor Arrays. I am no longer leary of Sigma's coatings with the DC and DG lens designations. Tokina too has digital lens coating technology so disposed. Tamron too, but the imaging quality of their lenses is more suspect, lens by lens, than these other two. If you check out Globetrotter's picture postings on his wilderness URL, recall that his 24mm Sigma EX is pre digital coatings (pre DG). There is a noteable difference between his earlier SMC 24mm FA photography and his Nikon body based Sigma 24mm photography: in the area of color saturation and fidelity.
The earlier SMC FA is noteably better, as will be the newer digital coating lenses.

Here, however, I must throw in a caveat of caution. Please use as an indicator of actual use testing for both 35mm and AP sized camera results for the various fixed focal length and zoom lens choices out there. See the Reviews tab and select the Pentax lens mount. Here the claims and hyles of much camera and lens system advertising are clarified indeed. Remarkably, very few wide angle and medium range zooms measure up to SMC lens use for 35mm (and even AP digital). And the superiority of the SMC A, F, and FA lines are remarkable.

So, when contemplating, for example a 12-24mm lens, it becomes important to your USD 500-650 investment to see how these units fare. A good range, at least for Sigma and Tokina seems to be not only this range, but, especially those starting at 20mm to 35 or 40mm. Others simply are poor, because the ranges are not what users wish them to offer in quality. Tamron, in particular, falls down in their quantity of offerings measuring up. Tokina and Sigma too need the qualifications of these reported user results.

Canon lens quality, except in the most professional ranges, varies also. Nikon is not as inconsistent. So, it seems that Nikon and Pentax, as in ages past, are the most quality consistent. Then Tokina and Sigma, FYI. Check it out before you buy. --Jay

10. From : Jay (
Url : http://
Date : 02:54 AM Friday 24 February, 2006

AB, The one thing to really test, on receipt, is the multifunction/self timer/mirror lock-up feature lever. This has always been subject to its time-in-use loosening and replacement necessity factor. And, it can represent an expensive fix. All ebay purchases must be as advertised, or the seller must receive such in return for reimbursement. --Jay

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Maintainers for Pentax LX Series SLR Camera Models Message Board:
Tony Davies-Patrick (Globetrotter) (; Mico Smiljanic (;
Jay Hart (; Philip Ashman (

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