Need help with adapter selection - Nikon/Pentax!
September 25, 2015 3:43 PM   Subscribe

My Pentax K10D has finally become all but unusable, and a friend is giving me her Nikon D90 (body only). I have several lenses for my Pentax, and I'm looking for a good adapter.

After some research, I've found that this might be a little tricky... I've only just learned the phrase "flange focal distance", and apparently Nikon is notoriously inflexible when it comes to compatibility with other lenses. See below, for the difference:

Nikon (f mount): 46.50 mm
Pentax (k mount): 45.46 mm

I've found an adapter (FotodioX Pro Lens Mount) that makes this jump, but... I'd really like to find one with focus confirmation, which this one lacks. This is the hard part.

Do any of you have experience with this, or have alternative suggestions? I'm excited just to have a working camera again, but finding out that I'm stuck with manual-only is kindof a wet blanket.
posted by ScarletLark to Technology (6 answers total)
Have you looked at used lens prices? Is it practical to sell your Pentax lenses and buy used Nikon lenses? That's what I did years ago when I changed camera brands, and I lost a little bit of money, but not a ton. Seems like a better path to satisfaction than adapters.
posted by primethyme at 3:56 PM on September 25, 2015

As practical as that sounds... I'm kind of sentimental about those lenses. I got them as birthday & Christmas presents from different family members, and they've been everywhere with me. It's sappy, but I'd like to keep using them, if possible.
posted by ScarletLark at 4:06 PM on September 25, 2015

In that case, buy a used Pentax body, there are lots of options. Would your friend mind if you on-sold that Nikon to fund a Pentax body?
posted by GeeEmm at 5:41 PM on September 25, 2015 [2 favorites]

You really don't want to use any of these adapters that rely on extra optics like the one you linked to. If you insist though, it might make you feel better knowing that the D90 doesn't actually need an adapter to have "focus confirmation" or anything else like that, the focus indicator in the viewfinder will work no matter what lens or adapter you have attached. The focus confirmation thing is really only an issue with Canon cameras.

Keep in mind though that with an adapter like the one you posted, you might not get the results you're expecting or used to with those lenses. The glass in the adapter that lets the Pentax lens focus to infinity on the Nikon camera will magnify the image by 1.4x, as well as negatively affect the quality of the images you take. Also, another big issue is that you will have no way of controlling the aperture from the camera, instead you'll need to use a ring on the adapter, and the viewfinder will get noticeably darker as you do so. It's really not an ideal solution, especially if you're using lenses that aren't all that fast to begin with.
posted by Venadium at 6:15 PM on September 25, 2015 [1 favorite]

To echo Venadium, that adapter is going to be a pain unless you prefer to shoot close up in manual. You might get a replacement 10D body on eBay for $125. Or a lower-end Pentax for even less. My guess is you can find someone on Craigslist to straight up trade for a body you will be happy with. The 10D is roughly equivalent to the D90, just two years older, so you should still get something of an upgrade if you can find a 20D.
posted by wnissen at 9:33 PM on September 25, 2015

You won't find an adapter that allows the D90 to focus or set aperture on the Pentax lense. You'll need to use stopped down metering. You won't get any any lense information embedded in your picture metadata. IE full on manual only.

It's not impossible, I use a 500m reflex via screw on adapter on my D80. But it is awkard enough that I really need to use that lense.

I'd also vote for putting the money you would spend on the adapter towards a used body that you can pull out when you are feeling nostalgic.
posted by Mitheral at 10:54 PM on September 25, 2015

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