Chris's camera pages



Asahi Pentax SL & SP500

Two 'not quite' Spotmatics, presumably made as entry-level cameras, or intended as a photographer's second body perhaps. The SL is the earliest, and was made around 1965. It is basically the same camera as the Spotmatic with one major difference. It has shutter speeds 1 to 1/1000 second, and the self-timer, but lacks the through-the-lens exposure meter of the full-spec Spotmatic.

The SL has a notch in the shutter speed dial to couple to the accessory meter like that used on the earlier Pentaxes.

Another noticeable difference, the SL has no meter switch, and to preview the image with the aperture stopped down to the working setting you must use the small auto/manual switch on the body of the lens instead.

The SP500 was made around 1971, this time around Asahi took a different tack when marketing a lower cost camera. While the SP500 has the through-the-lens exposure meter of the Spotmatic, it lacks the the self-timer, and the top shutter speed of 1/1000 second is missing from the dial, although there is an unmarked position corresponding to the 1/1000 second that delivers that speed.

Asahi Pentax SL & SP500

Back to Camera List