K2 35mm SLR Camera


Pentax

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9 Reviews  

Average Rating: 3.5 out of 5

3.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Golden Cameras 3.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Golden Cameras 3.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Golden Cameras 3.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Golden Cameras 3.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Golden Cameras
 
Tom Gartshore 4.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 8/29/2006 9:39:34 PM 4.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 8/29/2006 9:39:34 PM 4.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 8/29/2006 9:39:34 PM 4.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 8/29/2006 9:39:34 PM 4.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 8/29/2006 9:39:34 PM
Rating: 4.5 out of 5
I find myself in agreement with Bob Phipps that the Pentax K2 is not a beginner’s camera but it is certainly one a beginner could grow into. As the flagship of the Pentax K series of the mid to late 70s, it boasted most of the features one would expect from a “professional” camera of its vintage. These features included: mirror lockup, depth of field preview, +/- 2 (1 EV steps) over/under exposure compensation, a vast range of ASA from 8 ~ 6400, self timer 5~9 seconds, flash sync 125th of a second, automatic shutter priority and full manual match needle mode. Metering is center-wighted, accurate and reliable. I tend to think of the K2 as a K1000 on steroids. The K2DMD variant of this camera featured a motor drive, data backs as well as an aperture window. I can’t imagine why anyone would buy a K1000 if a K2 were available. You just get so much more. I disagree with the “bulky” evaluation however. I tend to think the downsizing of cameras during this era was hardly an improvement but rather a means to make cameras cheaper to produce. The K2 is built like a tank and was built to last. I find it suits my hand far better than my diminutive Pentax MX. I purchased a K2 used in 1992 and continue to use it to this day. The foam was recently replaced as it was in for a cleaning, lube and adjustment. It should be good for another 20 years. It will probably outlast me. Initially, setting the ASA was a bit difficult. On this score I disagree with Bob. Once you figure out how it works it is actually quite simple to set. I do agree with Bob though regarding the “quality” feel of this camera. It is a substantial well-made camera. The same can be said of the K series lenses that were introduced with this series of cameras. The brass and glass construction of these lenses shout quality. Pentax optics have always been highly regarded and with good reason. If both the lab and I do our jobs properly this camera and lenses deliver remarkable images. That is the true test of any camera. If you are interested in “traditional” photography, the kind where you have to do more than point and shoot, the K2 would be an ideal choice,
8/29/2006 9:39:34 PM
 
John M. Holman
BetterPhoto Member Since: 12/21/2005
4 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 12/21/2005 8:20:58 PM 4 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 12/21/2005 8:20:58 PM 4 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 12/21/2005 8:20:58 PM 4 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 12/21/2005 8:20:58 PM 4 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 12/21/2005 8:20:58 PM
Rating: 4 out of 5
Fantastic bulletproof old camera
12/21/2005 8:20:58 PM
 
Bob Phipps 3 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 4/2/2005 10:47:17 AM 3 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 4/2/2005 10:47:17 AM 3 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 4/2/2005 10:47:17 AM 3 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 4/2/2005 10:47:17 AM 3 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 4/2/2005 10:47:17 AM
Rating: 3 out of 5
Hardly a beginner's camera as some here have said, but the top model of the "K" series, above the KM, KX and humble K1000. It was the Pentax flagship even after the "M" series came along. Initially it sold with the f 1:1.2/50 lens as standard! It was only superceded by the LX.

It has auto exposure with full manual override, and a fast vertical metal shutter with some mechanical back-up speeds (including 1/125 sync). Top plate has traditional layout.

It is fairly bulky and heavy - predating the Olympus OM1 which set the trend for tiny cameras. The "K"s had galvanometer needle meters, making them a bit less robust. For these reasons the "K" series (except the K1000) was soon superseded by the smaller "M" series equipped with LED metering, and, except for the much over-rated K1000, the K's are now fairly rare.

The K2 has a quality feel, and winding on film is like winding a fine old clock. However, the film speed - exposure factor arrangement is so poor that my hanbook has an additional loose sheet (by Pentax themselves) to give supplementary advice - the LX and "M" series did it much better. Likewise the take up spool is more fiddly than the "magic needle" spool found in the later cameras.

Even more rare was the K2dmd variant which had a Judas window (aperture in viewfinder), a (separate) motor drive, and data backs. In the late 70's this was very expensive professional kit.

4/2/2005 10:47:17 AM
 
Brian T.J. Nelson 3.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 12/30/2004 10:49:07 PM 3.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 12/30/2004 10:49:07 PM 3.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 12/30/2004 10:49:07 PM 3.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 12/30/2004 10:49:07 PM 3.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 12/30/2004 10:49:07 PM
Rating: 3.5 out of 5
awsome camera to learn the basics on.
12/30/2004 10:49:07 PM
 
Robert Bull 2.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 12/21/2004 4:58:28 PM 2.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 12/21/2004 4:58:28 PM 2.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 12/21/2004 4:58:28 PM 2.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 12/21/2004 4:58:28 PM 2.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 12/21/2004 4:58:28 PM
Rating: 2.5 out of 5
good beginners SLR
12/21/2004 4:58:28 PM
 
Paige  3.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 12/14/2004 11:08:06 AM 3.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 12/14/2004 11:08:06 AM 3.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 12/14/2004 11:08:06 AM 3.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 12/14/2004 11:08:06 AM 3.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 12/14/2004 11:08:06 AM
Rating: 3.5 out of 5
I'm just learning about black and white photography so I am hardly fimilar with the camera.
12/14/2004 11:08:06 AM
 
Paige  4 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 12/14/2004 11:06:24 AM 4 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 12/14/2004 11:06:24 AM 4 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 12/14/2004 11:06:24 AM 4 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 12/14/2004 11:06:24 AM 4 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 12/14/2004 11:06:24 AM
Rating: 4 out of 5
I'm just learning about photography, so i'm really not familiar with it.
12/14/2004 11:06:24 AM
 
Richard  4.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 11/29/2004 12:04:33 PM 4.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 11/29/2004 12:04:33 PM 4.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 11/29/2004 12:04:33 PM 4.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 11/29/2004 12:04:33 PM 4.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 11/29/2004 12:04:33 PM
Rating: 4.5 out of 5
The Pentax K2 was my first SLR and Pentax's first automatic camera. After 25 years I still carry the K2 in my camera bag, although it's been relegated to backup to my ZX-5n. The K2 is simple, reliable, and rugged. I've never had to have this camera repaired and with occasional cleaning still works like a charm. Unlike many newer mid-priced SLRs, the K2 has both mirror lock-up and depth-of-field preview. It can be used in manual mode (match needles) or in auto (apperture priority only). Exposure compensation in Av is plus or minus two stops. A minor complaint--the meter is center-weighted only, but has never posed a problem in getting good exposures. For long exposures, the K2's heavy shutter can be a drawback (slight, in my experience), which is where the mirror lock-up feature can at least keep the problem from being worse. All in all, the Pentax K2 is a classic.
11/29/2004 12:04:33 PM
 
Jeffrey M. Hayward 3.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 12/18/2003 7:35:34 AM 3.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 12/18/2003 7:35:34 AM 3.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 12/18/2003 7:35:34 AM 3.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 12/18/2003 7:35:34 AM 3.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 12/18/2003 7:35:34 AM
Rating: 3.5 out of 5
Usually used in college/uni as a learner camera. However very reliable under many conditions. Pentax stock lenses are razor sharp.
12/18/2003 7:35:34 AM
 

9 Reviews