Pentax MZ-M

35mm MF film SLR camera


Production details
Announced:November 1997
Also known as:Pentax ZX-M
System: Pentax K (1975)
Imaging plane
Maximum format:35mm full frame
Mount and Flange focal distance:Pentax K [45.5mm]
Imaging plane:36 × 24mm film
Model:Electronically controlled
Speeds:30 - 1/2000 + B
Exposure metering:Through-the-lens (TTL), open-aperture
Exposure modes:Programmed Auto
Aperture-priority Auto
Shutter-priority Auto
Physical characteristics

Manufacturer description #1

Compact Lightweight Body for Portability and Maneuverability

Despite the incorporation of a film winder, the MZ-M measures just 135mm wide, 90.5mm high and 55mm deep and weighs a mere 305 grams without batteries,* allowing you to enjoy the world of high-quality SLR photography anytime, anywhere.

* In the case of the non-date model.

Multi-Mode Exposure System for Enhanced Creativity

The MZ-M features Programmed AE, Shutter-Priority AE, Aperture-Priority AE, Metered Manual, and Bulb modes to handle a variety of subjects and situations and assure greater freedom of creative expression.

Aperture-Priority AE to control the depth of field: When you select the desired F-stop (aperture) on the lens aperture ring, the MZ-M automatically selects the optimum shutter speed to assure proper exposure. You can choose larger apertures to narrow down the depth of field and throw the background out of focus, or use smaller apertures to increase the in-focus area from foreground to background.

Shutter-Priority AE to capture a subject on the move: When you select the desired shutter speed, the MZ-M automatically selects the optimum aperture based on the subject's lighting condition. You can take advantage of high shutter speeds to freeze motion, or use slower speeds to stretch the movement across the image field.

Programmed AE to concentrate on image composition and shutter opportunities: The MZ-M automatically sets a combination of aperture and shutter speed, based on the exposure program, to assure optimum exposure of your subject. Since it frees you from troublesome exposure adjustment, you can concentrate on image composition and shutter opportunity. What's more, the MZ-M allows you to switch to other exposure modes quickly and effortlessly.

Metered Manual and Bulb for ultimate control over exposure settings: In the Metered Manual mode, you are free to select aperture and shutter-speed settings to produce your intended visual effect. The bar graph in the viewfinder lets you confirm the subject's exposure level at a glance, even for intentionally over — or underexposed pictures. The Bulb mode is provided for extended exposures, and it comes in handy for dramatic night scenes and breathtaking astronomical photography.

Simple, Direct-Access Operation with At-a-Glance Confirmation

Important camera settings, ranging from shutter speed to exposure compensation value and film advance mode, can be adjusted — and visually confirmed — using two large dials and other switches, all of which are conveniently positioned on the top panel.

Other Outstanding Features

  • Electronic preview for quick, effortless depth-of-field assessment with pushbutton operation
  • 2-segment metering for greater exposure accuracy
  • Natural-Bright-Matte focusing screen for a clear, bright viewfinder image

Manufacturer description #2

TYPE: Multi-exposure Mode 35mm SLR

FORMAT: 24x36mm

USABLE FILM: 35mm perforated cartridge film. DX-coded film with ISO 25-5000; non-DX coded films with ISO 6-6400

EXPOSURE MODES: Programmed AE Mode, Shutter-Priority AE Mode, Aperture-Priority AE Mode, Metered Manual Mode, Bulb Mode

SHUTTER: Electronically controlled vertical-run focal-plane shutter, Electromagnetic release, Speed range: (1) Auto 1/2000-30 sec. (stepless), (2) Manual 1/2000-2 sec. (3) Bulb

LENS MOUNT: Pentax KA2 bayonet mount (K-mount with lens information contacts)

COMPATIBLE LENS: Pentax KAF2-, KAF-, KA- and K-mount lenses are usable

VIEWFINDER: Pentamirror finder, Matte field and split-image spot with microprism collar focusing screen, Field of view: 92%, Magnification: 0.77X (with 50mm lens at infinity), -1.0 diopter eyepiece

VIEWFINDER INDICATION: Shutter speed indication, Aperture indication, Flash ready indication, Bar graph (exposure compensation), Over or Under exposure indication in Manual Exposure Mode, exposure compensation indication, [*] memory lock indicator

EXTERNAL LCD PANEL INDICATION: [P] = Programmed-AE Mode, [Tv] = Shutter-Priority AE Mode, [Av] = Aperture-Priority AE Mode, [M] = Manual Exposure Mode, Film speed = 6-6400, ISO indication, Film status information, Battery exhaustion warning, Film counter = 0-99

PREVIEW BUTTON: Electronically controlled. Usable in all exposure modes

SELF-TIMER: Electronically-controlled type with delay time of 12 sec. Start by depressing of shutter release button, Operation confirmation: By PCV beep tone. Cancelable after operation

MIRROR: Quick-return mirror

FILM LOADING: Film advances automatically to 1st frame after back cover is closed. Film information window is provided

FILM WIND & REWIND: Auto wind/rewind by built-in motor, Consecutive or Single advance mode, Approx. 2 frames/sec. (consecutive mode), Auto rewinding starts at end of roll, Film rewind/completion of rewinding is displayed on the LCD panel, mid-roll rewind button will rewind film in mid-roll

EXPOSURE METER: With FA-, F-, or A-series lenses: TTL multi(2)-segment metering, Metering range from EV1 to EV17.5 at ISO 100 with 50mm f/1.4 lens. With M-series, screw-mount, or any other lens that does not have information contacts: Center-weighted metering

EXPOSURE COMPENSATION: +/- 3EV in 0.5EV step increments

FLASH SYNC: Hot shoe with X-contact which couples with Pentax dedicated auto flashes (except FTZ-series flashes), ISO range = 25-800

FLASH SYNC SPEED: 1/100 sec. or slower

POWER SOURCE: Two 3V lithium battery (CR2 or equivalent)

BATTERY EXHAUSTION WARNING: Battery exhaustion symbol is lit (blinking when the shutter is locked)

BACK COVER: Interchangeable for replacing Data Back FJ

Manufacturer description #3

A new manual-focus 35mm SLR camera... ideal for SLR novices who wish to learn the basic skills of photography.

Super-compact, lightweight body: The ZX-M measures just 135mm (5.3") wide, 90.5mm (3.6") high and 55mm (2.2") deep, and weighs only 305 grams (10.8 oz.), making it compact enough for the user to bring along on every occasion.

Multi-mode exposure system: The ZX-M offers four different exposure modes: the hands-off Programmed AE, the depth-oriented Aperture-Priority AE, the action oriented Shutter-Priority AE, and the totally maneuverable Metered Manual. The selection of an exposure mode is made simply by adjusting the lens aperture ring and/or the camera’s shutter dial.

Sophisticated multi-pattern metering system: The ZX-M multi-pattern metering system is designed to get the maximum performance from the camera’s auto-exposure modes – even in difficult backlighting and high-contrast situations.

Easy film handling: The built-in film winder loads the film, advances it to the first frame, winds it at the speed of two frames per second, and rewinds the film at the end of the roll – all automatically.

Electronic depth-of-field preview: One push of the preview button allows the user to check the depth of focus to create the desired visual effect, even when the lens aperture ring is set to the “A” (auto) position.

Exposure compensation: With a simple turn of the exposure compensation dial, this function allows the user to adjust the level of exposure within a ±3EV range in 1/2EV steps for bracketing or for intentional over - or underexposure.

Memory Lock: This function allows the user to ensure correct exposure on a single element in the final image by memorizing the exposure data for 10 seconds with simple push-button operation.

1/2000-second high-speed shutter: With a top shutter speed of 1/2000 second, th ZX-M can freeze a critical moment in the subject’s movement. Such high shutter speeds are very useful in sports and action photography.

Electronic self-timer: The built-in self-timer delays shutter release by 12 seconds, allowing the photographer to be part of the picture. This is also useful for avoiding camera shake in slow-shutter and bulb applications.

Manual ISO film-shutter setting: Film speed can be manually adjusted between ISO6 and ISO6400 in 1/3 steps, so that the photographer can set the right film speed for non-DX coded film or intentionally shift the exposure level on an entire roll of film.

LCD and viewfinder display: The external LCD panel and viewfinder display offer a range of useful photographic data to the photographer at a glance. The viewfinder also features a Pentax original Natural-Bright-Matte focusing screen for a sharp, clear viewfinder image and an automatic illuminator for easy reading of data regardless of the subject’s lighting condition.

Compatibility with Pentax lenses and accessories: Most existing high-quality Pentax 35mm interchangeable lenses and a wider range of optional accessories can be used with the ZX-M to satisfy the photographer’s every creative need. (Note that autofocus operation is not available with the ZX-M even when a Pentax-FA lens is mounted.)

Similar cameras (18)

35mm full frame • Manual focus • Film • Singe-lens reflex • Pentax K mount

Model Shutter Metering Modes Year
Ricoh KR-10
Also known as Ricoh XR-1000S, Ricoh CR-10
E, 1/1000 TTL • OA AM 1980
Ricoh KR-10SE E, 1/1000 TTL • OA AM 1980
Ricoh KR-5SV M, 1/2000 TTL • OA M 2000
Ricoh XR Solar M, 1/2000 TTL • OA M 1994
Ricoh XR-1 M, 1/1000 TTL • OA M 1977
Ricoh XR-1S M, 1/1000 TTL • OA M 1979
Ricoh XR-2 E, 1/1000 TTL • OA AM 1977
Ricoh XR-2000
Also known as Ricoh KR-10 Super
E, 1/1000 TTL • OA AM 1982
Ricoh XR-2S E, 1/1000 TTL • OA AM 1979
Ricoh XR-8
Also known as Ricoh KR-5 Super II
M, 1/2000 TTL • OA M 1993
Ricoh XR-8 Super
Also known as Ricoh KR-5 III
M, 1/2000 TTL • OA M 1994
Ricoh XR-F E, 1/1000 TTL • OA AM 1983
Ricoh XR-S E, 1/1000 TTL • OA AM 1981
Ricoh XR5
Also known as Ricoh KR-5 Super, Ricoh CR-5
M, 1/1000 TTL • OA M 1980
Ricoh XR500
Also known as Ricoh KR-5
M, 1/500 TTL • OA M 1978
Ricoh XR500 auto E, 1/1000 TTL • OA AM 1982
Ricoh XR6 E, 1/1000 TTL • OA AM 1981
Ricoh XR7 E, 1/1000 TTL • OA AM 1982
Notify of

Copy this code

and paste it here *

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Copyright © 2012-2023 Evgenii Artemov. All rights reserved. Translation and/or reproduction of website materials in any form, including the Internet, is prohibited without the express written permission of the website owner.

35mm full frame

43.27 24 36
  • Dimensions: 36 × 24mm
  • Aspect ratio: 3:2
  • Diagonal: 43.27mm
  • Area: 864mm2

Unable to follow the link

You are already on the page dedicated to this lens.

Cannot perform comparison

Cannot compare the lens to itself.

Image stabilizer

A technology used for reducing or even eliminating the effects of camera shake. Gyro sensors inside the lens detect camera shake and pass the data to a microcomputer. Then an image stabilization group of elements controlled by the microcomputer moves inside the lens and compensates camera shake in order to keep the image static on the imaging sensor or film.

The technology allows to increase the shutter speed by several stops and shoot handheld in such lighting conditions and at such focal lengths where without image stabilizer you have to use tripod, decrease the shutter speed and/or increase the ISO setting which can lead to blurry and noisy images.

Original name

Lens name as indicated on the lens barrel (usually on the front ring). With lenses from film era, may vary slightly from batch to batch.


Format refers to the shape and size of film or image sensor.

35mm is the common name of the 36x24mm film format or image sensor format. It has an aspect ratio of 3:2, and a diagonal measurement of approximately 43mm. The name originates with the total width of the 135 film which was the primary medium of the format prior to the invention of the full frame digital SLR. Historically the 35mm format was sometimes called small format to distinguish it from the medium and large formats.

APS-C is an image sensor format approximately equivalent in size to the film negatives of 25.1x16.7mm with an aspect ratio of 3:2.

Medium format is a film format or image sensor format larger than 36x24mm (35mm) but smaller than 4x5in (large format).

Angle of view

Angle of view describes the angular extent of a given scene that is imaged by a camera. It is used interchangeably with the more general term field of view.

As the focal length changes, the angle of view also changes. The shorter the focal length (eg 18mm), the wider the angle of view. Conversely, the longer the focal length (eg 55mm), the smaller the angle of view.

A camera's angle of view depends not only on the lens, but also on the sensor. Imaging sensors are sometimes smaller than 35mm film frame, and this causes the lens to have a narrower angle of view than with 35mm film, by a certain factor for each sensor (called the crop factor).

This website does not use the angles of view provided by lens manufacturers, but calculates them automatically by the following formula: 114.6 * arctan (21.622 / CF * FL),


CF – crop-factor of a sensor,
FL – focal length of a lens.


A lens mount is an interface — mechanical and often also electrical — between a camera body and a lens.

A lens mount may be a screw-threaded type, a bayonet-type, or a breech-lock type. Modern camera lens mounts are of the bayonet type, because the bayonet mechanism precisely aligns mechanical and electrical features between lens and body, unlike screw-threaded mounts.

Lens mounts of competing manufacturers (Canon, Nikon, Pentax, Sony etc.) are always incompatible. In addition to the mechanical and electrical interface variations, the flange focal distance can also be different.

The flange focal distance (FFD) is the distance from the mechanical rear end surface of the lens mount to the focal plane.

Lens construction

Lens construction – a specific arrangement of elements and groups that make up the optical design, including type and size of elements, type of used materials etc.

Element - an individual piece of glass which makes up one component of a photographic lens. Photographic lenses are nearly always built up of multiple such elements.

Group – a cemented together pieces of glass which form a single unit or an individual piece of glass. The advantage is that there is no glass-air surfaces between cemented together pieces of glass, which reduces reflections.

Focal length

The focal length is the factor that determines the size of the image reproduced on the focal plane, picture angle which covers the area of the subject to be photographed, depth of field, etc.


The largest opening or stop at which a lens can be used is referred to as the speed of the lens. The larger the maximum aperture is, the faster the lens is considered to be. Lenses that offer a large maximum aperture are commonly referred to as fast lenses, and lenses with smaller maximum aperture are regarded as slow.

In low-light situations, having a wider maximum aperture means that you can shoot at a faster shutter speed or work at a lower ISO, or both.

Closest focusing distance

The minimum distance from the focal plane (film or sensor) to the subject where the lens is still able to focus.

Closest working distance

The distance from the front edge of the lens to the subject at the maximum magnification.

Magnification ratio

Determines how large the subject will appear in the final image. For example, a magnification ratio of 1:1 means that the image of the subject formed on the film or sensor will be the same size as the subject in real life. For this reason, a 1:1 ratio is often called "life-size".

Manual focus override in autofocus mode

Allows to perform final focusing manually after the camera has locked the focus automatically. Note that you don't have to switch camera and/or lens to manual focus mode.

Manual focus override in autofocus mode

Allows to perform final focusing manually after the camera has locked the focus automatically. Note that you don't have to switch camera and/or lens to manual focus mode.

Electronic manual focus override is performed in the following way: half-press the shutter button, wait until the camera has finished the autofocusing and then focus manually without releasing the shutter button using the focusing ring.

Manual diaphragm

The diaphragm must be stopped down manually by rotating the detent aperture ring.

Preset diaphragm

The lens has two rings, one is for pre-setting, while the other is for normal diaphragm adjustment. The first ring must be set at the desired aperture, the second ring then should be fully opened for focusing, and turned back for stop down to the pre-set value.

Semi-automatic diaphragm

The lens features spring mechanism in the diaphragm, triggered by the shutter release, which stops down the diaphragm to the pre-set value. The spring needs to be reset manually after each exposure to re-open diaphragm to its maximum value.

Automatic diaphragm

The camera automatically closes the diaphragm down during the shutter operation. On completion of the exposure, the diaphragm re-opens to its maximum value.

Fixed diaphragm

The aperture setting is fixed at F/ on this lens, and cannot be adjusted.

Number of blades

As a general rule, the more blades that are used to create the aperture opening in the lens, the rounder the out-of-focus highlights will be.

Some lenses are designed with curved diaphragm blades, so the roundness of the aperture comes not from the number of blades, but from their shape. However, the fewer blades the diaphragm has, the more difficult it is to form a circle, regardless of rounded edges.

At maximum aperture, the opening will be circular regardless of the number of blades.


Excluding case or pouch, caps and other detachable accessories (lens hood, close-up adapter, tripod adapter etc.).

Maximum diameter x Length

Excluding case or pouch, caps and other detachable accessories (lens hood, close-up adapter, tripod adapter etc.).

For lenses with collapsible design, the length is indicated for the working (retracted) state.

Weather sealing

A rubber material which is inserted in between each externally exposed part (manual focus and zoom rings, buttons, switch panels etc.) to ensure it is properly sealed against dust and moisture.

Lenses that accept front mounted filters typically do not have gaskets behind the filter mount. It is recommended to use a filter for complete weather resistance when desired.

Fluorine coating

Helps keep lenses clean by reducing the possibility of dust and dirt adhering to the lens and by facilitating cleaning should the need arise. Applied to the outer surface of the front and/or rear lens elements over multi-coatings.


Lens filters are accessories that can protect lenses from dirt and damage, enhance colors, minimize glare and reflections, and add creative effects to images.

Lens hood

A lens hood or lens shade is a device used on the end of a lens to block the sun or other light source in order to prevent glare and lens flare. Flare occurs when stray light strikes the front element of a lens and then bounces around within the lens. This stray light often comes from very bright light sources, such as the sun, bright studio lights, or a bright white background.

The geometry of the lens hood can vary from a plain cylindrical or conical section to a more complex shape, sometimes called a petal, tulip, or flower hood. This allows the lens hood to block stray light with the higher portions of the lens hood, while allowing more light into the corners of the image through the lowered portions of the hood.

Lens hoods are more prominent in long focus lenses because they have a smaller viewing angle than that of wide-angle lenses. For wide angle lenses, the length of the hood cannot be as long as those for telephoto lenses, as a longer hood would enter the wider field of view of the lens.

Lens hoods are often designed to fit onto the matching lens facing either forward, for normal use, or backwards, so that the hood may be stored with the lens without occupying much additional space. In addition, lens hoods can offer some degree of physical protection for the lens due to the hood extending farther than the lens itself.


Teleconverters increase the effective focal length of lenses. They also usually maintain the closest focusing distance of lenses, thus increasing the magnification significantly. A lens combined with a teleconverter is normally smaller, lighter and cheaper than a "direct" telephoto lens of the same focal length and speed.

Teleconverters are a convenient way of enhancing telephoto capability, but it comes at a cost − reduced maximum aperture. Also, since teleconverters magnify every detail in the image, they logically also magnify residual aberrations of the lens.

Lens caps

Scratched lens surfaces can spoil the definition and contrast of even the finest lenses. Lens covers are the best and most inexpensive protection available against dust, moisture and abrasion. Safeguard lens elements - both front and rear - whenever the lens is not in use.