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09-14-2013, 06:30 PM   #1
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Locked up K-5...WTH

Couple years old K-5 with close to 30k shots (latest FW and clean batt. and lens contacts, thank you) just decided to lock up this afternoon. Camera displayed 1/8000, F--- and it would not respond to any inputs at all. Had to pull the grip and the body battery to recover.
I was shooting M, high continuous, manual focus, with a 900mm f1:7.5 APO refractor and RAW+ with SR off.
Any ideas as why are welcomed.

09-14-2013, 07:55 PM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ex Finn. Quote
Couple years old K-5 with close to 30k shots (latest FW and clean batt. and lens contacts, thank you) just decided to lock up this afternoon. Camera displayed 1/8000, F--- and it would not respond to any inputs at all. Had to pull the grip and the body battery to recover.
I was shooting M, high continuous, manual focus, with a 900mm f1:7.5 APO refractor and RAW+ with SR off.
Any ideas as why are welcomed.
It's a random thing with some of us, I just reload the battery and move on,
09-14-2013, 08:11 PM   #3
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Common on many cameras to have this happen. I say reload the battery.
09-14-2013, 08:33 PM   #4
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If it only happens occasionally don't worry about it. In some cases it gets progressively worse. My k-5 is currently in the shop for something similar, I think my problem is mechanical either the shutter or mirror not completing the cycle and jamming up. Started out once in a while then got to every few shots so off it went for repair. No word yet on what was wrong or if it can be fixed.

Note, my problem may not be the same as yours and I would not worry at all about a single lockup.

09-15-2013, 01:45 AM   #5
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Suspect main pcb failure known k5 / k30 fault
09-15-2013, 04:45 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by adwb Quote
Suspect main pcb failure known k5 / k30 fault
That would be a costly repair, I hope it was just a one time fluke, caused by the alignment of the moon and the planets.
09-15-2013, 05:26 AM   #7
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Do you by chance know if it was running on the internal battery or the grip battery? I find that if I'm running on the grip battery, it never locks ups, but as soon as I switch to the internal, it locks up frequently. I try to catch the grip battery before it switches over, but occasionally I can't, and that's usually when I have a problem.
09-15-2013, 05:42 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by eccs19 Quote
Do you by chance know if it was running on the internal battery or the grip battery? I find that if I'm running on the grip battery, it never locks ups, but as soon as I switch to the internal, it locks up frequently. I try to catch the grip battery before it switches over, but occasionally I can't, and that's usually when I have a problem.
It was on the grip (D-BG4), later the same day, I took an other 200+ images and couple video clips at a H.S. band competition. No problems at all, ran like a Swiss watch.

09-15-2013, 07:12 AM - 2 Likes   #9
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There are several reasons for this, it's common to all cameras, not just Pentax.

Mechanically DSLR cameras are like dominoes. pressing the shutter button releases the mirror which pops up, the mirror releases the shutters first curtain, when that has got to the bottom of the frame it releases the shutter timer which counts down, the timer releases the second curtain, and the second curtain, releases the mirror back to it's rest position, finally the mirror trips the shutter rewind mechanism and were back to where we started.

Any break in this sequence and everything comes to a standstill, a common one with old cameras is the mirror shutter cushion getting sticky over time so the mirror is not released back to the rest position it will stay in this configuration for ever or until the mirror is manually re-set. Probably the most common problem of all in DSLR cameras is an old or run down battery not able any longer to supply the power required to rewind the shutter and/or mirror mechanism, again the sequence is broken waiting for the shutter to re-set.

The same happens in the firmware, different codes in the firmware are in operation at different times in the cycle, it's the metering firmware that generates the shutter time for instance, it's possible for the firmware to generate spurious data either due to outside electromagnetic interference or, and were back to batteries again, a glitch in the power supply for a fraction of a second. This is why taking the battery out, allowing for the capacitors to discharge then re-inserting the battery works, it forces a 'cold' boot and also forces a POST (Power On Self Test) through the whole camera system that re-sets all the data in the cameras Ram. Diving by zero is a well known culprit which causes the cameras firmware to go into an endless loop trying to generate an infinite number, it is heavily protected against, but can happen during a glitch, most of which comes back to battery.

As the batteries in a grip switch to the internal battery, is a known problem area, if the camera is just idling, there's no problem, but if the camera is involved either in the mechanical sequence as above when relatively heavy currents are required, or a firmware sequence is running, often both occur at the same time, it's common for the 'power glitch' to wreak havoc.

If you start to experience these faults increasingly frequently, the main culprit is probably the battery, replacing them with fully charged known to be good ones usually clears the problem. The most stressed component in any camera is the battery, it's always the first component to fail, you will get through several batteries in the life of your camera body. It's the only component that all other parts of the camera rely on and the only common factor in all the cameras various operations. Cameras 'freezing' is the most common example of a battery beginning to fail. You can't rely on the battery indicator, it's just a voltmeter and doesn't show the state of the battery, capacity diminishes with age and use, they can develop 'glitches' temporary power loss especially as they age and when they are close to discharged. Batteries rarely just fail they suffer from a slow decline, just like me, camera 'freeze' is most usually an indicator of this inevitable aging.

Other than mechanical problems replacing the battery with a new one and having multiple batteries to share the load and give them time to re-form over a few days is the surest way to cure and avoid 'camera freeze' 99% of the time that's all it is. Batteries are not a 'fit and forget' component, far from it.

Chris

Last edited by ChrisJ; 09-15-2013 at 07:30 AM.
09-15-2013, 12:26 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by ChrisJ Quote
due to outside electromagnetic interference
I was considering that being a possibility, since I was fairly close to some boats with navigation radars on them.
My refractor telescope could have been pointing just the right way and act like a receiver horn / waveguide, collecting RF energy and channeling it in to the inside of the camera. The dimensions of the scope are actually favorable for operation in the 8-12 GHz X-band range.
If it happens again, then this theory is obviously out the window.

edit: I used the same battery for over 200 additional shots and couple video clips. That kinda eliminates a worn out battery being the culprit.

Last edited by Ex Finn.; 09-19-2013 at 04:58 PM.
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