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Pentax MX 35mm SLRs

4.58/5 (55 Reviews)


  • Product ID21337930
    Depth3.24 in.
    Width5.31 in.
    Height1.94 in.
    Weight17.44 oz.
    Shutter Speed1 - 1/1000 sec
    Camera TypeSLR (Single Lens Reflex)
    Focus TypeManual Focus
    Lens MountPentax K

Product Description

Totally manual 35mm SLR circa late 70's- early 80's. Uses K-mount lenses. Out of production.


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Reviews 1 - 5 (55 Reviews Total) | Next 15

User Reviews

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by richard hale a Intermediate

Date Reviewed: February 23, 2012

Strengths:    Compact, Lightweight. Classic good looks, DofF preview. Takes winder or motorwind. Wide range of reasonably priced lenses available. tough and reliable. Good ergonomics. Viewfinder data. Interchangeable viewfinder screens



Weaknesses:    Shutter dial stiff and a bit fiddly

Bottom Line:   
I bought mine in the summer of 2007 for £125 which included 50mm f2 lens, winder and the original boxes, for my collection. I had previous nearly bought one in 2000 for use when I needed to replace a broken camera, but at that time did not like the feel of it and opted instead for a Minolta x700. Upon revisiting the MX 7 years later, I found my tastes had changed and I was using this little gem more and more.
What you get with this camera is what you would expect from a mechanical shutter SLR - simple easy to use exposure control, toughness and reliability, but with lots of extras that were "must haves" on serious cameras of the seventies and eighties -DofF preview, Aperture & shutter info displayed in the viewfinder, interchangeable finder screens, All wrapped up in a small package. If you match it to the Pentax 40mm f2.8 it is small enough to fit in a coat pocket or wear under a jacket quite comfortably and discreetlyt. I think it was Pentax's answer to the Olympus OM1n.
You can attach a very ergonomic winder or motordrive to it which helps handling and balance with zooms and telephoto lenses. It accepts a huge array of k, ka,kaf lenses, though I would try and get ka ones as they work very well with Pentax DSLRs.
The strongest assets of this camera in my opinion though are its size - for an SLR it is very small, only marginally bigger than the Pentax MESuper, and its reliabilty. I took mine to British Columbia in January 2008, where it experienced some very extreme conditions. It functioned down to about -20c, but did frieze up at -30c! Nevermind, it thawed out again and continued to work just fine afterwards.
It handles very well indeed, but to my mind not quite as nicely as the MESuper. The MX is a little less smooth on winding film on and the shutter a little clunkier. The shutter dial is quite stiff to operate and and its not that easy to change the shutterspeed with your eye pressed to the viewfinder as a consequence, but these are really very minor critisisms and very easy to live with.
Would I recommend one to someone else? Definitely, if they are after a small versatile go anywhere SLR, although if extreme conditions are not likely to be encountered, tripods not going to be used, DofF not required the MESuper may represent slightly better value for money

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Duration Product Used:   21+ years

Price Paid:    $125.00

Purchased At:   T4 swindon

Similar Products Used:   Pentax MESuper, Pentax SuperA, Pentax MZ5n, Pentax ist, Minolta Sr1, Minolta Srt101 Minolta XG1, Minolta XE1, Minolta XD7, Minolta X700, Minolta XK. Nikon FM2n, Nikon F3, Nikon F4. Olympus Om1n

Type of photography:   Outdoor


Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Reccas a Intermediate

Date Reviewed: April 30, 2011

Strengths:    Small and lightweight (but robust and with very good ergonomics) camera body; wonderful viewfinder (big, bright and with aperture/shutter speed indication); self-timer/DOF preview lever; indication of cocked shutter; trigger/light meter lock which works also as "T" shutter setting

Weaknesses:    Weak wind lever- shaky action, unequal distances between frames; meter tends to underexposure (and has small EV range); ASA setting only up to 1600; shutter speed dial rotates tightly

Bottom Line:   
Perfect travel camera with mechanical shutter (battery independent). Only function this camera lacks is a MLU.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   2-5 years

Similar Products Used:   Pentax K1000, Pentax SP 1000, Praktina IIA, Praktica MTL 5, Praktica BMS, Olympus OM 2 S/P, Olympus OM 10

Type of photography:   People


Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by asaru a Intermediate

Date Reviewed: March 3, 2011

Strengths:    Simplicity, elegance, fullness of controls.

Weaknesses:    Requires film.

Bottom Line:   
A camera is only a tool, a means to an end.

The MX is simple, well thought out, sturdy, light, and adaptable. When you hold it you are not doing camera. Rather, you are looking at the scene and thinking of the light. The rest is up to you.

I have never held a better camera. I only wish there were digital film.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   21+ years

Similar Products Used:   Nikon, Canon, Zenit SLRs.
Canon, Pentax P&S.
ME Super.


Type of photography:   Outdoor


Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Sly Carter a Intermediate

Date Reviewed: August 27, 2010

Strengths:    Easy to use, compact, good looking, great range of lenses commonly available. batteries seem to last forever. Hard wearing, durable, a pleasure to be with. Its like my best friend. Dof preview

Weaknesses:    Viewfinder is quite dim, but the focus prism helps, most models i have seen have specks in the viewfinder. erm.. not much else, no auto focus but im not bothered by that.

Bottom Line:   
My favourite of all my classic cameras, it has the most beautiful compact design I have ever witnessed in an slr. I first borrowed one from college and instantly fell in love with it. Stunning results everytime. For me its my perfect companion if i'm doing some serious work.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   2-5 years

Price Paid:    $71.00

Purchased At:   ebay

Similar Products Used:   k1000, p30, nikon fm2 and various d-slrs.

Type of photography:   Fine Art


Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by sfpeter a Intermediate

Date Reviewed: July 15, 2009

Strengths:    Simple and durable, old school metal with a fake leather skin.

Batteries can last for years.

Once you know how to set it up it's actually very easy to use, and can take great shots.

The split prism focusing screen is amazing for how much it helps get your shots in focus, I think they're not used on modern digital bodies (aside from most lenses being autofocus) because the prisms interfere with multi-segment metering.


Weaknesses:    As with all older film bodies age is catching up. Mine is semi-retired until I can replace the light seals.

The meter is, rather than the familiar indicator bar, a series of blinking diodes. While this makes the camera little more "high tech" looking it's annoying as hell when you're trying to compose a shot.


Bottom Line:   
My particular model is the MXE Super, I'm not too sure what the difference is between this and the standard MX. It's a typical SLR circa 1980; manual focus, split prism/microprism focusing screen, TTL metering with auto shutter speed, 50mm "normal" lens, and pure manual everything else.

This body uses "K" mount lenses, and after coming off of a long time on a digital body it's surprising how thin and small it is.

As with all 35mm film bodies it's obsolete, and I keep it mainly for if/when I get the desire to use film.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   6-10 years

Purchased At:   from a friend

Similar Products Used:   Canon AE-1

Type of photography:   Outdoor



Reviews 1 - 5 (55 Reviews Total) | Next 15

Review Options:  Sorted by Latest Review | Sort by Best Rating


First MX Shoot

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Some MX action from Wyoming!

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Here are a few from Zaca today. These are JPG edits on my 7 year old computer. Will do real edits later on! 1. [IMG]http://i89.photobucket.com/albums/k206/downhillnews/3G8E8222copy.jpg[/IMG] 2. [IMG]http://i89.photobucket.com/albums/k206/downhillnews/3G8E8261copy.jpg[/IMG] 3. [IMG]http://i89.p ... Read More »

Shot from the mx track

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2009 Hangtown National MX

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