Pentax K-1 Firmware v1.40 Released

New features for astrophotography and more

By PF Staff in Firmware Updates on Nov 17, 2016
Pentax K-1 Firmware v1.40 Released

Ricoh Imaging has just released its fourth firmware update for the Pentax K-1, which is also the second consecutive feature-enhancing update for this camera model.  It seems like Pentax has taken to heart the concept of long-term support of the K-1 through firmware. 

This update focuses on features that further enhance astrophotography.

This updates adds the following two features which recently debuted on the new Pentax K-70:

  • LCD Night Vision Mode
    The backlight is dimmed and the LCD adopts a red color palette to allow you to operate the camera in darkness without being blinded.

  • Extended Bulb Timer
    In Bulb mode, it is now possible to select shutter speeds up to 20 minutes.  There's no longer a need for a remote or a cable release just for this purpose.

In addition, there's something brand new:

  • White Dot Noise Reduction
    Some users have experienced stray white dots in long exposures of the night sky.  New in-camera processing seeks to remove these artifacts, which are classified as digital noise.

Download the K-1 firmware from the official Pentax firmware site

Pentax has also published a supplement to the user manual describing the new functions.

See our in-depth review for more information about the Pentax K-1.

Original Release Notes

[Enhanced features]

  • Red-lighted LCD monitor display function
    The PENTAX K-1 provides a red-lighted LCD monitor display function, which prevents the pupils of the photographer’s eyes from closing down after they have become accustomed to a dark environment during astrophotography.
  • Bulb timer function
    The bulb timer function comes in handy when photographing celestial bodies or fireworks. The PENTAX K-1 allows the photographer to expend an exposure time up to 20 minutes in Bulb mode.


  • During slow shutter speeds the PENTAX K-1 features white dot noise reduction processing. (*1)
  • Overall Improved stability for general performance.
    *1: When Slow Shutter Speed NR is OFF and JPEG image.

Pentax K-1 Firmware Update Instructions:

  1. Download the firmware ZIP file from this page
  2. Extract the file to a folder of your choosing
  3. Locate the extracted .BIN file and copy it to the root (top level i.e. outside of any folder) of a formatted SD card
  4. Fully charge your battery (firmware will not update at fewer than 3 bars)
  5. Insert the card into your camera's SD1 slot
  6. Turn the camera power on while pressing the MENU button
  7. Select "Yes"at the firmware prompt
  8. Once the screen displays "Complete", turn off your camera
  9. Power your camera back on and resume normal use
  10. In order to verify that the firmware update was successful, go to the firmware option under the setup (wrench icon) menu tab, and confirm that the indicated firmware version matches that of the update.

Note that all updates are cumulative, so the latest firmware version includes the contents of all previous versions.

Troubleshooting Tips

If you've having trouble updating your camera, check the points below.  In nearly all cases, your issue is covered by one of these:

  • Ensure you downloaded the correct firmware file for your camera (a K-3 II update will not work in a Pentax K-3, for example)
  • Ensure that you extracted the .BIN file out of the ZIP (the .BIN file is the only thing that the camera wants)
  • Check that the .BIN file is in the top level (root directory) of the SD card, outside of the DCIM folder
  • Delete old update files prior to copying a new update over to your card
  • Ensure that the .BIN file has not been renamed and that extension is unchanged (operating systems can do one or both if there are naming conflicts)
  • Check that your battery is fully charged
  • If your camera has two SD slots, the card with the update must be placed in SD1

Firmware Update Tutorial Video

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