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General meeting


Sunday ...

At last, the sun raised over the Umbrian hills and some good mood pervaded everyone, as in truth the day before we were a bit worried about bad weather. We were lucky, at least in the morning, when the weather was unsettled but never inclement.

The event immediately saw a good public attendance - not just members - also because a lot of people were attracted by a flea market in front of the hotel.

As usual, you could find the Protege table, featuring some extra attention toward digital compacts and the terrific medium format 645nII and 67II. Other tables were managed by Il Fotografo magazine, whose journalists had to choose the pictures for the AOHC calendar 2005, and by Manfrotto Trading and their professional equipment. Epson, a new entry, allowed everyone to download digital images from memory cards and print them on the spot. The precious table held by Tecno 2000 - official Pentax service - was present too and offered a free check up and in case an admission for recovering our "babies". This year, two ill "daughters" of mine, a ME Super and a black MX, were cured by Tecno 2000, soon sent back to me perfectly working. This is not advertising, the truth is that I was a bit worried for them and the perfect surgery reassured me a lot.

Of course, members were welcomed at AOHC table for registration, thanks to some willing folks doing the job. The most visible stuff on our table this year was the long awaited book on the screw mount Asahi Pentax cameras, written by Danilo Cecchi with AOHC cooperation and published by "Il giardino del libro fotografico". Our club cared about the specification charts, tables, final chapters and all iconographic aspects. That book is of great historical value, essential not only in the bookshelf of any AOHC member, but for any camera collector. Despite being a big fan of Pentax bayonet system, I found myself hurrying buying the book and, once at home, I drank it deep, discovering a lot of information that I couldn’t even imagine. In my opinion, such a book is a precious compendium especially for those, like me, who always followed the screw mount stuff from a distance, because it allows you to understand the most important events of that fascinating world which anticipated my beloved K-generation SLR cameras, all at once in a single volume.

The screw mount system fan will find a lot of information spread in various issues of Spotmatic magazine and not included in the book, but no doubt that such a complete and exhaustive publication in Italian was never available before. I believe that now a lot of people, including myself, are waiting for a similar volume dedicated to the bayonet system. We’ll wait with confidence.

Two more important events of the day were the start of the Spotmatic historical register (where I immediately recorded my Spottie, just second after Ermanno’s one) and the contest for the oldest Spotmatic (won by Ermanno himself, which on the other hand is a renowned "screwist").

Like it happens every year, it was nice to exchange impressions with other members about our equipment and share lenses for testing them, sometimes touching excellent optics for the first time ever. For me, it was curious getting and answering questions by members far more skilled than me, becoming aware that everybody can have something to share with others. A few days later, it was also funny debating with another Pentax fan in the internet and then realize we already met at the Pentax Day and we chatted there too.

Back to the chronicle, this year’s display cases were completely dedicated to the Spotmatics and their lenses, Super Takumar and SMC Takumar, featuring truly valuable items and all Spotmatic, Electro Spotmatic, ES, ES II, etc. models, on show with their plain and elegant style, still unique and fascinating 40 years after their debut.

As opposed to that vintage equipment, at the Protege table you could test the latest and modern DA-series lenses, exclusively dedicated to the *ist D, with an absolute preview of the 14 mm f/2.8. Too bad this jewel cannot cover 35mm size...

And now let’s report about the probably most awaited event of the day: models and vintage bikes. In this case, the problem was the harsh morning sunlight. Our models’ faces were badly lined by deep shadows, despite all the efforts by Maurizio Marani for softening them with large reflectors. Only a flash could help. From time to time, a few thin clouds were trying veiling the sun, but they were just moments.

On the other hand, in my opinion Shanti and Irina were just stunning: wonderful and truly clever. Almost unbelievable was their patience and helpfulness in satisfying even our most bizarre ideas for posing at the limit of funambulism on those valuable vintage motorcycles supplied by Mr. XXXX. Apparently, the girls were posing for each and every of us, like they had only one photographer to follow, instead of a hungry crowd of frantic shooters.

In the afternoon, when the rain forced us to shoot indoors, Irina and Shanti continued following us, even simulating a vampire bite. Yes, you’ve read well dear friends!

I cannot omit citing the excellent and varied buffet served in the hotel dining room, once again offered by Protege.

Our annual general meeting was also long and eventful, also because our agenda included elections for the board. In fact, we saw two new members from Rome entering the board, Fabio Cittadini and Alberto Sarandrea, who spontaneously run for feeding new ideas and new thought to the club. Everybody felt we have to look for new members, in order to increase membership and better funding club activities. However, it is probably better that this topic will be explained by someone else, more entitled in doing that.

Incidentally, I could mention of the missing extemporary contest for digital cameras, which was on schedule. In late afternoon, we discovered that Epson wrongly gave back authors all their own printed pictures, so that nothing was left to select. However, I heard no complaints for that trouble, probably meaning that there’s not yet a great feeling between AOHC members and digital photography, but I could be wrong.

At the end of the day, prize-givings took place: best picture, member coming from farthest distance, twelve pictures for the calendar and the oldest Spotmatic. Then some special prizes: one for the most aged member, one to Protege’s Dr. Augugliaro for his crucial help in managing this successful Pentax Day and another one to Protege, for their enduring and profitable cooperation with AOHC.

The next appointment is for 2005 in Vicenza area, so I’ll be there, together with all local members, waiting for you all for another Pentax Day. Hopefully, it will be similar to this one in all respects but temperature.

General meeting

General meeting












Mario and Marcello


Maurizio Bertozzi

Maurizio Marani

Giancarlo and Marcello

Stefano Zamagna

Gabriella Bekènyi

Ermanno Barchiesi

Fabio Augugliaro

Marcello Dugini

9th Pentax Day Report (Part I)
9th Pentax Day Report (Part III)

Page updated 31st Dec. 2004

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