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05-15-2015, 11:46 AM   #1
A. Ogamba

Pentax Ist DL

I have a Pentax ist DL. Recently when I turned my camera on, the menu does not show and my camera automatically focuses without pressing the shutter button. I can still take pictures but the LCD on the camera does not display a preview of any images on the screen. The only display that will show on the LCD screen is when my memory card is full, however, I am able to view the images from the memory card on my computer. Please help. Thanks!

05-15-2015, 02:53 PM   #2
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It could be that the camera has just reached the end of its service life, as this certainly sounds like a hardware issue. If you do end up having to replace it, I'd recommend going for the K-50, which is currently on sale at just over $300.

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05-15-2015, 06:47 PM   #3
A. Ogamba

Thanks Adam!
05-15-2015, 10:00 PM   #4
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This might be a matter of the shutter button being stuck in half press. You might be able to fix it yourself with some cleaning liquid; others might have a good idea of what to use and how to do it.

As far as I know the DL does not have an option to use back-button AF; that would have been a way around it or to prove that it's indeed a stuck shutter button.

05-16-2015, 12:17 PM   #5

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Yes the *istDx series of cameras can use the OK button as a AF button. I discovered this in 2005, later Pentax Cameras have had dedicated or near dedicated AF buttons since then. Here is how to set it up on a *istDs - which is older than the *istDL series of cameras.

QuoteOriginally posted by PDL Quote
It is not explicitly described in the manual - but if you look at pg 208 - the list of custom functions, you find:
item ------------------- default setting - reset setting - page - set it too
AF Button Function -- Enable AF ------- yes ------------- N/A --- yes
AF by Press Halfway- On --------------- yes ------------- N/A --- OFF

It is even better hidden in the *ist Ds - custom function:
Ok btn when shooting === pick option 3.

It's not like they make it easy to find, you have to look for it.
The Elitist formerly known as PDL
05-16-2015, 02:09 PM   #6
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Yep, make sure your lens and camera mount are clean and free of grime, make sure the battery is functional and charged, make sure the SD card slot and card have clean contacts, make sure the camera shutter button and AE-L and OK button work normally (are not stuck, there are no particles stuck behind them, and so on).

That being said, the ist DL is a fairly old camera and the K-50, recommended earlier, is much newer technology. It should give you faster performance and better colours, more detail. But it will not be any more difficult to operate to an experienced user, except the little while to learn the differences between the cameras. It is a capable camera, and if you get it with a WR lens, you can even shoot in poor weather.
05-19-2015, 02:21 PM   #7
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Thanks to you all for your responses. I bought my camera a few years back but didn't use it too often (maybe two or three times a month) and stopped shooting with it altogether for about two years. I wanted to get a little more use out of it and planned to use it as a back up but... Oh well. I will certainly try all that you have suggested and if all else fails, I will have to consider buying another. I've read the reviews for the K-50 which will probably be my choice. Thanks again!
05-19-2015, 09:46 PM - 1 Like   #8

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If you're looking for good value used, the K20D is a real bargain lately, going for just over a hundred USD. There's a website that shows shutter life and the K20D has one of the more stellar ratings.


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