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06-07-2012, 02:53 PM   #1
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K5 Sensor Stains - what's the point

i have had these spots on my camera since i bought it. i'm not sure when i first noticed them, because i normally use wide aperture settings, but when i close in the blades they are quite obvious. especially just left of the centre on the image. i initially ignored them hoping that the dust removal setting action would eventually clear them. i use a Giottos rocket blower occasionally with no difference. i have just recently tried using pads with the eclipse solution and still not a movement.

i never heard about these stains until after i tried cleaning the sensor a few days ago (even though i bought the camera new in December 2010) and subsequently did a search online.

i got in contact with an official Pentax dealer closest to me and i was told it would be up to 3 weeks turn around and they would try and do it under warranty.

i found the response unacceptable, but quite literally there is nothing i can do about it. i think the best i can do is make an open complaint online like this, but i'm sure references will be made to me being that of a child throwing the toys out of the pram.

06-07-2012, 03:07 PM   #2
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Everybody will get spots/stains from time to time, and which will require cleaning beyond a blower. The question is whether yours are permanent. After you used the Eclipse wet solution, did the spots remain in exactly the same spot? (Solutions tend to leave their own residue, and spots will still appear at very small apertures, but in new locations.) It seems near impossible to get a totally clean sensor -- if you stop down to ridiculous amounts (f32 and higher) you'll see something on pretty much anybody's camera.

Last edited by vonBaloney; 06-07-2012 at 03:55 PM.
06-07-2012, 03:47 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by freddyhard Quote
i found the response unacceptable, but quite literally there is nothing i can do about it. i think the best i can do is make an open complaint online like this, but i'm sure references will be made to me being that of a child throwing the toys out of the pram.
Not really, no references made here. Most of us voiced our complaints way back in December 2010 when you first purchased the camera. I guess that's a perk of participating in this forum early on, where you can at least be in the loop about problems and issues. In any case, it sounds like you have the infamous K-5 sensor stain. I'm just wondering if you didn't notice it for nearly two years, how come you noticed it now? Did it get worse over time or from your cleaning? In any case, I hope Pentax will do you a "solid" and repair the camera. Best wishes.
06-07-2012, 04:48 PM   #4
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Once your warranty is past on ANY product, the most any dealer is going to be able to do, is act as an advocate on your behalf. Its the plight of any modern human, our complex tools are always needing repair or maintenance. Right now, my chevy van is sitting outside with a hood latch that won't unlatch. I complained to my wife about it, but she hasn't shown any interest in fixing it herself

I think your dealer gave you a good answer - send it in and see what they can do for you. You can complain here for a 3 month period, and 3 months later, you will still have the same problem.

I was convinced a year ago, that i had a stain issue as well, had all the classic appearance, multiple spots trailing off into the string of pearls appearance. finally used the blower on it multiple times, and they disappeared

06-07-2012, 05:26 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by vonBaloney Quote
Everybody will get spots/stains from time to time, and which will require cleaning beyond a blower. The question is whether yours are permanent. After you used the Eclipse wet solution, did the spots remain in exactly the same spot? (Solutions tend to leave their own residue, and spots will still appear at very small apertures, but in new locations.) It seems near impossible to get a totally clean sensor -- if you stop down to ridiculous amounts (f32 and higher) you'll see something on pretty much anybody's camera.
yes the spots remained exactly in the same place and with the same magnitude after cleaning 4 times. after each cleaning i took a photo like the one linked above and the spots just to the left of centre remain.

QuoteOriginally posted by einstrigger Quote
Not really, no references made here. Most of us voiced our complaints way back in December 2010 when you first purchased the camera. I guess that's a perk of participating in this forum early on, where you can at least be in the loop about problems and issues. In any case, it sounds like you have the infamous K-5 sensor stain. I'm just wondering if you didn't notice it for nearly two years, how come you noticed it now? Did it get worse over time or from your cleaning? In any case, I hope Pentax will do you a "solid" and repair the camera. Best wishes.
i noticed them back at the start, but because i normally use wide apertures i was not constantly reminded of them with every photo. they have neither diminished or increased in size or density since i first noticed them.
i am not willing to send my 1400 camera away for up to 3 weeks and then maybe have a bill of who knows how much. i think the only "solid" being done is on me rather than for me.

QuoteOriginally posted by philbaum Quote
Once your warranty is past on ANY product, the most any dealer is going to be able to do, is act as an advocate on your behalf. Its the plight of any modern human, our complex tools are always needing repair or maintenance. Right now, my chevy van is sitting outside with a hood latch that won't unlatch. I complained to my wife about it, but she hasn't shown any interest in fixing it herself

I think your dealer gave you a good answer - send it in and see what they can do for you. You can complain here for a 3 month period, and 3 months later, you will still have the same problem.

I was convinced a year ago, that i had a stain issue as well, had all the classic appearance, multiple spots trailing off into the string of pearls appearance. finally used the blower on it multiple times, and they disappeared
Toyota produced a 1999 model corola that burnt oil and was a engine build fault. they did a factory recall on repaired those cars for free.
Pentax have acknowledged this is a sensor build issue. warranty or not they have sold a faulty product. as i said above i've been in contact with Pentax.
all i have left is a rant.
06-08-2012, 06:15 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by freddyhard Quote
i have had these spots on my camera since i bought it. i'm not sure when i first noticed them, because i normally use wide aperture settings, but when i close in the blades they are quite obvious. especially just left of the centre on the image. i initially ignored them hoping that the dust removal setting action would eventually clear them. i use a Giottos rocket blower occasionally with no difference. i have just recently tried using pads with the eclipse solution and still not a movement.

i never heard about these stains until after i tried cleaning the sensor a few days ago (even though i bought the camera new in December 2010) and subsequently did a search online.

i got in contact with an official Pentax dealer closest to me and i was told it would be up to 3 weeks turn around and they would try and do it under warranty.

i found the response unacceptable, but quite literally there is nothing i can do about it. i think the best i can do is make an open complaint online like this, but i'm sure references will be made to me being that of a child throwing the toys out of the pram.

Hey -a good rant never hurt anyone (AFAIK!). So...good luck with that!

Since the answer the dealer gave you was unacceptable, maybe try finding someone else who could give you a different answer? Maybe Pentax CUstomer Support?
06-08-2012, 07:36 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by freddyhard Quote
i am not willing to send my 1400 camera away for up to 3 weeks and then maybe have a bill of who knows how much.
It is not worth that much anymore, you can buy it for a lot less money now.

I am not quite sure I understand your position. You knew about the problem from the beginning but decided not to take action when Pentax publicly invited everyone to send their camera in and have the issue repaired for free.

Now you decide that it is an issue and the fact that someone offered to try and see whether the issue can still be treated as a warranty case is not good enough?

I agree that the stains issue should ideally not have happened in the first place, but once affected units were sold, Pentax could hardly do more than recall affected cameras, which they did with a public apology.

Fingers crossed Pentax will exchange the sensor for you free of charge even now, but I still have trouble to understand your frustration when you were the one to put yourself into the situation you are in right now.
06-08-2012, 08:11 AM   #8
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Like Class A says contact Pentax directly (assuming Ireland receives it's goods through a division like Pentax UK) and not a local distributor. this was a very well documented issue. If you have early files showing it all the better to argue for warranty replacement of the sensor.

06-08-2012, 09:31 AM   #9
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QuoteQuote:

I am not quite sure I understand your position...
I agree with everything, except the OP did not know about the stain issue until a few days ago. He's a new PF member, so he did not see the exhaustive postings here...
06-08-2012, 06:32 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Class A Quote
It is not worth that much anymore, you can buy it for a lot less money now.
so i should go out and buy a new camera or demand money back from amazon where i bought it?

QuoteOriginally posted by Class A Quote
I am not quite sure I understand your position. You knew about the problem from the beginning but decided not to take action when Pentax publicly invited everyone to send their camera in and have the issue repaired for free.
i knew nothing about the sensor stains. i knew there were spots initially, but because i used wide apertures they did not cause a problem too often. i also hoped that the dust removal action would clear them evetually and occasionally i'd use a rocket blower to help.
just because you read something somewhere on the internet about Pentax doesn't mean i have.

QuoteOriginally posted by Class A Quote
Now you decide that it is an issue and the fact that someone offered to try and see whether the issue can still be treated as a warranty case is not good enough?
i have not decided that this is NOW an issue. it always has been one. recently i have been trying hyperfocal shots which always involve closing in the aperture blades. not until i cleaned the sensor 4 times with no effect did i read about the sensor stains.
the official Pentax dealer said they might be able to fix it under warranty. this also means that they might want to charge me and with no indication of any kind with costs i am NOT going to take the chance of having a substantial bill and a 3 week wait at a camera that cost me quite enough in the first place.

QuoteOriginally posted by Class A Quote
I agree that the stains issue should ideally not have happened in the first place, but once affected units were sold, Pentax could hardly do more than recall affected cameras, which they did with a public apology.
Pentax did not contact me.

QuoteOriginally posted by Class A Quote
Fingers crossed Pentax will exchange the sensor for you free of charge even now, but I still have trouble to understand your frustration when you were the one to put yourself into the situation you are in right now.
that's right. i put myself in this situation for buying the Pentax camera.

i explained all of the above in my first post and confirmed it with the subsequent one. i used your Queen's english in both. if you did not read my posts then you should not comment. if you did, then i think you need your eyes tested.
06-08-2012, 06:35 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by freddyhard Quote
i have not decided that this is NOW an issue. it always has been one. recently i have been trying hyperfocal shots which always involve closing in the aperture blades. not until i cleaned the sensor 4 times with no effect did i read about the sensor stains.
the official Pentax dealer said they might be able to fix it under warranty. this also means that they might want to charge me and with no indication of any kind with costs i am NOT going to take the chance of having a substantial bill and a 3 week wait at a camera that cost me quite enough in the first place.
They wouldn't just bill you. Assuming the free repair wasn't going to happen, they'd give you the amount and you'd either approve it or not to go ahead with the repair. You would be without the camera, but your only financial risk is the cost of shipping.
06-08-2012, 06:36 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by jmg257 Quote
Hey -a good rant never hurt anyone (AFAIK!). So...good luck with that!

Since the answer the dealer gave you was unacceptable, maybe try finding someone else who could give you a different answer? Maybe Pentax CUstomer Support?
i'm not sure where to try next. i was in contact with the UK official Pentax dealer, which is closest to me. if i try anywhere else i'd imagine they'd just direct me back to the UK dealer.
06-08-2012, 06:43 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by vonBaloney Quote
They wouldn't just bill you. Assuming the free repair wasn't going to happen, they'd give you the amount and you'd either approve it or not to go ahead with the repair. You would be without the camera, but your only financial risk is the cost of shipping.
well they would have to charge me for time as well. plus costs of shipping over and back so i guess 100/150. i have been unemployed for 3 years now. i'm at the bottom of the barrel. i cannot efford to throw money away for nothing.
06-08-2012, 08:04 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by freddyhard Quote
well they would have to charge me for time as well. plus costs of shipping over and back so i guess 100/150. i have been unemployed for 3 years now. i'm at the bottom of the barrel. i cannot efford to throw money away for nothing.
I can't tell you exactly how it works there, but in the U.S. I just send in the camera and ask them to evaluate it and tell me what it would cost to repair. If I don't want to have it repaired at that cost, they will send it back to me, and I'll have to pay for that shipping ($12). That, plus the $12 I spent to send it to them, is my total financial risk. This is no charge for the estimate itself. Of course you are trying to get the repair for free, and there is no reason you shouldn't be able to nail down a yes/no answer beforehand -- they will either be willing to do it or not. And that will be up to the Pentax HQ, not the repair guys. Of course even if they agree, they will say, "Naturally, if there is evidence of abuse, etc etc..." so a yes will be conditional, but if you can get them to agree to a free repair replacement in theory (get it in writing), then it is worth it to chance it and spend a few bucks on shipping.
06-08-2012, 09:40 PM   #15
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Although the dealer's current answer might not have satisfied you, your options are not exhausted in my opinion.

Ask your dealer to contact the Pentax distributor / agent and explain the situation (or do it yourself if they're not prepared to do it). It was a problem in the early series and Pentax Ireland / UK might take that into consideration.

And yes, you might be a while without a camera but that is how it is. I was lucky (back in the days) as our local agent allowed me to keep the camera till a replacement arrived (I waited 3 months for the replacement).

Good luck
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