Manufacturing Quality


Link Posted 04/08/2002 - 22:56
A couple of days ago a customer of mine came along with his camera kit and offered it to me for the "derisory" offer that he had received for it as a part exchange. So, for 20 he offered me a Yashica FRI, FRII, 50mm lens, 135mm lens, ring flash, filters, Yashica winder and all the bits and pieces that went with it. Obviously I couldn't refuse, but the relevant point here is manufacturing quality. The kit is very well made, but actually not a patch on the Pentax standards.
Think of Pentax and the superb finish, the silky smooth controls, the superb focusing movement on the (manual) lenses, even the relative consistency of the filter sizes for various lenses.
The Yashica has 52mm filters for the 50mm and 55mm for the 135mm - very inconvenient - and the lens construction is stiff and more on a par with independent lenses of the day. The bodies are heavy, bulky and have a very laborious method for switching on the metering. Still, a good 20 worth.
So for those who have experience of other makes than Pentax, how do you think the quality compares?
I'd be very interested to see some opinions.
Best regards, John

Pete Bargh

Link Posted 05/08/2002 - 09:18
Good subject to kick off with John. Hope it gets some good response. You were lucky to get all that for 20! I quite liked the FR1 but preferred the Contax big brother I had a 137MD for a while it was superb and the Zeiss lenses fine. But you're right at the time the FR1 was around I think Pentax where on the KX and KM models very classy with superb lenses. But when the ME/MX arrived that was when I thought Pentax really had their act together. I loved the M lenses. Light, smooth and superb quality. Other cameras? I never liked older Canons - I though they were too clunky. Nikon FM2 was an old favourite and I still own an F3. I had and really enjoyed using an Olympus OM1n for a couple of years too. Then they brought out the terrible OM3/OM4 with battery problems. I have fond memories of the old Pentax S1, never could get on with the shutter cocking/lens removal process, but otherwise the camera was great to use. First Autofocus love? Canon EOS100. I still have this and use it from time to time.
Magezine Publishing Ltd


Link Posted 06/08/2002 - 12:59
My first foray into the world of Pentax photography was the MX, which is still one of my favourites. Like Peter I found the M series lenses superb, and a world away from the independent lenses I had used on my first SLR (a Praktica MTL3). In terms of autofocus cameras I have had long and fautless service from a couple of Canon EOS5's, but somehow they just dont have the 'feel' of the MX / LX etc. The MZ5n is slowly worming its way into my affections (it is so light - great when I am hill walking) but I just keep going back to those M series cameras.....
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