Updated review: Pentax Spotmatic SP

Pentax arguably defined how an SLR should look and work in the 1950s, and kept evolving the idiom through the 1980s. Along the way they introduced the seminal Spotmatic, with stop-down metering aboard. Read my updated review of the Spotmatic SP here.

Pentax Spotmatic SP


4 responses to “Updated review: Pentax Spotmatic SP”

  1. Steve Mitchell Avatar

    I was recently given one of these….I replaced the battery with a Zinc-air battery, normally used in hearing aids I think. The advantage of these is the voltage is correct, so the meter should theoretically be accurate. I still need to replace the light seals, and I am looking forward to giving it a try. You are right, it is an iconic 35mm SLR!

    1. Jim Grey Avatar

      These take an odd-duck battery, another reason I like the Spotmatic F as it takes an SR44 cell, so easily found.

  2. Khürt Williams Avatar

    Your statement about Pentax is not factually correct.

    Asahi Kogaku Goshi Kaisha was founded in November 1919 by Kumao Kajiwara, at a shop in the Toshima suburb of Tokyo, and began producing spectacle lenses. In 1938 it changed its name to Asahi Optical Co., Ltd. At the end of World War II Asahi Optical was disbanded by the occupying powers, being allowed to re-form in 1948.

    In 1952 Asahi Optical introduced its first camera, the Asahiflex. The name “Pentax” was originally a registered trademark of the East German VEB Zeiss Ikon (from “Pentaprism” and “Contax”) and acquired by the Asahi Optical company in 1957. The company was renamed Pentax Corporation in 2002.

    My point is that your sentence that starts with “ Pentax arguably defined how an SLR should look and work in the 1950s…” seems to suggest that Pentax was a company in the 1950s through the 1970s. There was no Pentax company until 2002.

    1. Jim Grey Avatar

      Khürt, you’re right of course. But as you can probably see I’m not writing an authoritative camera history site. I’m just a hobbyist writing experience reports with old gear. I think my risk of significantly confusing anyone is low by retrofitting the Pentax name to times before Asahi became Pentax officially.

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