Introducing the Pentax Spotmatic

Published : 07/08/2018 12:45:50
Categories : Zoom on

Introducing the Pentax Spotmatic

Are you looking for a great quality SLR which is easy to use ? At Nation Photo, we have what you're after : the Pentax Spotmatic, a model which we've carefully tested, checked and reconditioned, and which comes with a 2 year warranty ! Here's all you need to know about the iconic camera.

About the Pentax Spotmatic

Founded in Japan in 1919, Asahi Optical Co. — which would later become Pentax — was just a company producing glass optics, to begin with. It's only years later, in 1951, that they would go on to produce their first ever camera: the Asahiflex.

In 1960, Asahi invented the TTL (Through The Lens) light-meter: a concept whereby the intensity of light reflected into a camera could be measured directly through the lens, thus ensuring perfect exposure times. The invention was unveiled at the Photokina festival that very same year.

In 1964, Asahi began commercializing their Spotmatic camera, a 24x36mm SLR with the innovative TTL light-meter built in. It rapidly became a favorite amongst professional photographers, but it would only be some years later that it would become accessible to the wider public, when the company optimized several production processes which allowed them to lower its price.

The Pentax Spotmatic is built with a light body, it it easy to handle and very sturdy. It allows shutter speed to be adjusted from 1 second up to 1/1000, and also has a B (Bulb) Mode. Film advances smoothly thanks to a small lever. The camera is equipped with a self-timer, and a socket to plug in external flashes, with a dial for synchronization (M and X).

It uses the M42 screw-thread lens mount which was developed by Zeiss and Praktica, and has a 42mm diameter. At the time, this was the most advanced mount available, and allowed the camera to be mounted with Takumar lenses, produced by Asahi Optical Con. themselves. These lenses are today considered some of the best equipment ever to be made.

This camera is semi-automatic : to achieve correctly exposed images, the photographer must manually adjust either aperture or speed. To do so, all you need to do is align a little needle in the viewfinder with a designated point, thanks to a switch on the side of the lens mount. This system also allows photographers to deliberately over or underexpose images, according to light conditions or desired effects.

In stock at Nation Photo

Nation Photo are proud to have acquired a large stock of Spotmatic cameras (SP, SP500, SP1000, SPII et SPF), so as to once again allow professional and amateur photographers to get their hands on them. But what are the differences between these different models? Not a great deal, but we've listed the main points below !

  • the SPII and SPF are the only models with a built-in hot-shoe to use a flash. For the other models, we give away "cold" shoe accessories so you can still add a flash, however you'll need to get hold of a synchronisation cable, to plug the flash into the camera.
  • the SP500 does not indicate 1/1000 on its shutter speed dial, yet you can shoot at that speed as with all the other models. Don't ask us why, the reason is a mystery!

And that's it ! All these models have exactly the same design and produce images of the same high quality. Take a look yourself at some of the pictures shot with our Spotmatic cameras, taken by the winners of our latest big photo contest:


The cameras have been checked, tested and reconditioned !

All of the cameras have been carefully reconditioned by our expert team so as to be good as new.
The process involved:

  • changing the sealing foam within the cameras
  • checking the shutter speeds are working perfectly
  • a thorough cleansing of the inside of the camera body
  • taking apart, testing, cleaning, and reconditioning the lenses

Comes with a 2 year warranty !

Every Pentax Spotmatic we sell comes with a 2 year warranty which guarantees you free repairs should you camera ever need fixing within that period (so long as the camera has not been mishandled, taken apart, or meddled with beforehand by a third party repairer).

If any camera were beyond repair, Nation Photo guarantees you a new camera body (still within the 2 year period).



Includes the camera body, the lens, the camera's refurbishment service and the 2 year warranty !

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