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09-14-2012, 07:05 PM   #31
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
Well I'm still within my Moderator warning period for making ad hominem posts - but I certainly wouldn't intentionally splash a plastic cup of water on any camera to make a point to my Nikonian father. In my gentlest, most humblest, least judgingmentalest opinion there is a certain amount of User Error here, regardless of any fault eventually found in this individual camera body.

I always thought the ads were risky anyway, since I interpret them to be a metaphor rather than an actual demonstration of fact. The ads should have that "Never attempt yourself. Shot in a closed studio by a professional window washer. Not intended to depict real use." disclaimer like the sports car ads do.
I am not saying what I did was a good idea. But the marketing material and reviews make it seem like the body should be able to handle ten fold what I did to it.

09-14-2012, 07:06 PM   #32
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I'd say it's a bad seal, up to you what to do. I'd send it in. If you decide not to, get a ziplock back and some rice and put the camera in that. The rice should pull the moisture out after a few days.
09-14-2012, 07:13 PM   #33
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Instead of complaining , call Pentax . And if they do a good job , make sure to say it. You should see all the problem with RV who have water infiltration and they cost $20,000
09-14-2012, 07:17 PM   #34
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QuoteOriginally posted by RyanW Quote
I'd say it's a bad seal, up to you what to do. I'd send it in. If you decide not to, get a ziplock back and some rice and put the camera in that. The rice should pull the moisture out after a few days.
The camera and the 35mm I got came with silical gel packs. I nuked the packs and have them in a ziplock with it now. We will see.

09-14-2012, 07:30 PM   #35

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Yes if it is brand new, then you shouldn't have to deal with a bad seal. Return until the issue is resolved. You shouldn't have to go through the hassle, but to get for what you paid you are going to have to I'm afraid.
09-14-2012, 07:38 PM   #36
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QuoteOriginally posted by fantasysage Quote
I am not saying what I did was a good idea. But the marketing material and reviews make it seem like the body should be able to handle ten fold what I did to it.
I understand WHY you did it - Pentax's visuals made it look safe. I'm just suggesting, no matter how annoying and frustrating it may be, accepting a few weeks w/o a new camera represents whatever small part the User had in the fault, and might be helpful to the anger level in the interim.

If Pentax Repair is less than accommodating send them a copy of the ad image. No text, no letter, just your repair order number written across the top of the ad.
09-14-2012, 07:52 PM   #37

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This is sort of like testing a laptop hard drive. If dropped while the disk is spinning, the internal read/write head would impact the disk and cause damage, so the drive is supposed to sense freefall and *very* quickly park the head in a safe landing spot before the drive hits the ground. It works but I don't recommend dropping your laptop onto concrete to test it.
09-14-2012, 08:21 PM - 3 Likes   #38
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There seems to be a lot of people posting in this thread that feel that the WR feature of a Pentax camera is for emergency use only. I've read comparisons to airbags and HDD head parking... As I contemplate purchasing a K-30, one of the top 3 reasons I want it is to utilize the WR feature regularly. There have been several times since the announcement of the K-30 that I've either had second thoughts about taking my K-r with me or put it away due to situations and weather that involved the potential for the camera getting wet. I guess in my mind, testing the WR feature should be more like testing the brakes in your car. They are there and meant to be used in normal use as well as emergencies and there's not much harm in testing them if you've driven a long time without applying them.

If the general consensus of the experts on this forum is that the WR feature is to be reserved for emergency protection circumstances because testing it and expecting it to work is just asking for trouble, then I guess it shouldn't be part of my motivation for upgrading. (Not that there aren't other reasons... but WR is/was an important one to me)

09-14-2012, 08:43 PM   #39
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These cameras were subjected to far worse than having a cup of water splashed on them:
09-14-2012, 08:52 PM - 1 Like   #40
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Your camera should be capable of withstanding an incidental splash. Contact your seller first for a new replacement. If they refuse, contact Pentax for a warranty replacement. The replacement should be warranted the same as your original purchase.

As for "using the WR feature regularly". I would suggest that you do what the pros do...use a housing or an assistant with an umbrella. The seals are to prevent accidental, not intentional, damage. That being said, I have used my K10D without a single problem in all sorts of bad weather (I live in the very wet Pacific Northwest) and I don't own a single WR lens. The camera stays under cover unless I am actively shooting. My daughter (who is notoriously hard on gear) has taken hers all over the globe including the Great Indian Thar Desert, the jungles of northern Thailand, and the coast of Antarctica. She too has had zero issues despite dust, grit, salt, and moisture.

09-14-2012, 09:21 PM - 12 Likes   #41
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The fact of the matter is that anything created by man is, by nature, imperfect. This includes the systems that create the products themselves (i.e. factories that create cameras). By realizing this, the ensuing understanding is that, unfortunately, you probably have a poorly finished end-product (read=compromised, less-then-originally-engineered sealing). Cars, computers, batteries, etc are recalled every year - it sucks, but it happens and is just a fact of life that you will ultimately have to come to terms with. But while that is true, I can assert that there is enough evidence to counter any claims of less-than-satisfactory weather sealing capabilities regarding Pentax products.

I can personally assure you that the weather sealing claims are very real, and in my experience are not touted enough. I have emailed Pentax (to no response, unfortunately) stating that I believe they need to do more to advertise the weather sealing claims, and the most legitimate way to do this is by using the internationally recognized IP Codes (see here for a much more detailed explanation). These are industry standard, regardless of the industry involved, and are also the standards used for evaluating critical pieces of gear/equipment for military usage (as the military demands the highest levels of durability, as one would expect). Using these codes, I have personally assessed the weather sealed bodies (I own a K-5 and K-7) when combined with a WR/AW/DA* lens to be, at a minimum, IP55W. AW and DA* will have a higher degree of sealing against water and dust, but the difference between 4 and 5 is enough that I would categorize WR as 5 (just barely) as well. What this means is:
  • IP - Ingress Protection Rating, sometimes also interpreted as International Protection Rating (mandatory prefix to coding)
  • 5 - Dust Protected - Ingress of dust is not entirely prevented, but it must not enter in sufficient quantity to interfere with the satisfactory operation of the equipment; complete protection against contact
  • 5 - Water Jets - Water projected by a nozzle (6.3mm) against enclosure from any direction shall have no harmful effects.
    • Test duration: at least 3 minutes
    • Water volume: 12.5 litres per minute
    • Pressure: 30 kPa at distance of 3m
  • W - Weather Conditions
*Disclaimer: I have not personally had access to a "6.3mm, 12.5 L/m, 30 kPa nozzle," however I believe that a highly pressurized showerhead more than suffices for this.

Here is a testimonial from another Pentax user (who luckily has insider access somehow...lucky bastard...)

QuoteOriginally posted by doug13 Quote
i left mine under the cold shower for 6 straight hours, i had to test it cause it was a k5 with the improved seals that they used on the k30, dont ask how i got it, lets just say i also got a k30 in may. they both perform the same after 6 hours of non stop shower. I never trusted a camera nor a manufacture like i trust Pentax
The intent behind the aforementioned email to Pentax is that it is my personal opinion that Pentax should lead the industry by publishing their confidence in their equipment as rated to an internationally recognized standard. This would make Pentax the very first camera company to do so for DSLR's, and would help further the credibility of Pentax's purported claims (which still are dubious at best to many). As a 100% private user (i.e. not paid by Pentax in anyway), I stand by the above standard (IP55W), and all experiences have been through personally owned cameras.

I believe I can venture to say that I have abused my cameras--both intentionally and unintentionally--worse than 95% of Pentax's userbase.

The following examples should provide enough documentation and evidence to support that claim. For those of you who have seen these before, I apologize for a lot of self-plagiurizing/-summarizing.


  • This was actually the second iteration I did that day (I screwed up the first shoot), and now, over 3.5 months later (this was made in the beginning of July and is not mid September), I have never had a single issue with either camera or the lenses. No sand inside any of the dials, buttons, etc. The flash got "stuck" on the K-7 in the video because sand had gotten under it (it is weather sealed also, but obviously not the space between it and the camera), so once I raised it up manually, it was good to go, and today it feels as if I just bought it - springy as ever. Come winter time I plan to do a sequal to that weather sealing video - I'll save the details to keep it a surprise Also, you have to remember, that natural rain hardly ever has the same intensity and pressure as a full blown shower head - I have lived through plenty of hurricanes and I can promise you that whatever rain you are thinking of will at best match the water's intensity that you saw in that video I made. And that would be unbelievably rare when it does happen.
  • I can't count the amount of times I have poured water from liter+ bottles, sinks, shower heads and even a hose once just to freak photographer friends out (which makes your 2 oz splash on the backside seem like merely spitting on it).
  • Using the above methods to legitimately clean off my cameras after getting them extremely dirty from being in the elements.
  • Do you see the large rectangular pouch that my left arm is resting on? Inside is my Pentax K-5 + mounted DA* 55 that I took on a nighttime helicopter raid mission I considered bringing the Sigma 30 since they both share an aperture of f/1.4 while the Sigma is considerably wider, but ultimately went with the 55 because of the weather and dust sealing. The next morning, I was so glad that I did - the helicopter that was coming to pick us up overshot the PZ (Pickup Zone) and flew RIGHT. OVER. us and pelted us with not just dust, but rocks. It was a CH-47 Chinook, which is the largest and most powerful helicopter in the Army's arsenal. Couple that with double rotors, and holy rotor wash lol. The camera and lens were so caked in dust and sand it was actually pretty shocking since it was inside the pouch. So I was very glad I took the 55 and not the unsealed Sigma 30. This was later cleaned under a shower head.

  • This was taken by me in Afghanistan during a dust storm at approximately 1300h (1 PM), a time when it is so bright it is still painful wearing sunglasses at times. Pentax K-5, DA* 50-135

  • This was also taken by me, but in a thunderstorm - the first few photos were ruined because there was so much water on the lens element that I didn't notice at first. Thankfully I did quickly and cleaned it. Pentax K-5, DA* 16-50

  • I have taken my camera running - yes, literally running, and not in a bag/pack - just the strap across my shoulder or holding the grip in my hand. I was leading a physical training event in the rain at around 0400 as I was the lead trainer of 10 soldiers that were being trained to attend an elite military school that I had recently graduated from. Here's a photo taken from that morning, 2 hours into the rain soaked PT session (yes, those lucky few were carrying the 135kg/300lb+ boat the entire way the entire time). Pentax K-5, DA 18-55 WR

  • I have had my camera in a turret (unsecured/not tied down) while being the gunner during a mounted vehicle convoy. Because I am sure the question will arise: no, photography was obviously never my priority - it was just to catch opportunity shots, and I shot pics through the bullet proof observation windows of the turret - I never put myself at unnecessary risk. At one point we were fired upon by enemy insurgents, at which point I fired back and the links and shell casings from my .50 caliber machine gun fell on the unprotected camera/lens. Again, this had to be cleaned under a shower head to be cleaned from all the dust and sand that covered the body and lens. Picture is of the K-5 + D-BG4 Battery Grip, DA* 60-250

  • Most recently I have resorted to taking my K-5 on combat patrols (similar in fashion to the Night Vision image above) in a drop-leg holster (Lowepro Zoom 55 AW, which is a perfect fit for the gripped K-5 + DA* 60-250 with reversed hood) as I operate in an advisory role patrolling among Afghan soldiers. Yes my primary "weapon" is an actual rifle, not the camera, which is kept within the holster except for 15 sec intervals of quick-removal,-picture,-replacement-into-holster. Yes, as you can imagine, the same cleaning treatment is given upon return to base each time.
Others' Testimonials:

QuoteOriginally posted by amoringello Quote
First thing I do with any new WR camera and/or WR lens is put it in the shower and put it through it paces.
I take my camera just about everywhere and if its raining, I do not want to stop shooting.
Was recently on vacation and the weather was awful. As everyone else put their cameras away, I was the only one with photos.
Maybe not the best photos, but I had them. :-)
I want to make sure I don't have a dud and make sure that I can take it back before the bad weather comes. :-)
I've been out in torrential downpours (stronger than my shower). Both the camera and lenses hold up just fine.
QuoteOriginally posted by coreyhkh Quote
I dropped mine into a pond fora few seconds and it still works.
QuoteOriginally posted by Medium FormatPro Quote
In terms of WR... The new K30 probably has the best WR of any slr on the market. The K30 can hold class 4 indefinately and almost borders upon a class 5. The degree of WR followed not too far behnd by the K5.
QuoteOriginally posted by westmill Quote
Ive seen the K5 waterproofing tested by sum guy running it under a tap about a hundred times a day at a show !
If thats not enough... you gotta need an underwater camera lol
QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
Honestly I do agree with what others have said- Pentax weather sealing is good enough that in practice, your camera won't break due to rain or moisture.
QuoteOriginally posted by Andrew Faires Quote
-a two week camping trip that either rained, snowed or sleeted for a full dozen of those days. I took about 2000 images without anything covering the camera or lenses. I just made sure I wasn't switching lenses until I got back to the tent and dried the camera up.
-bay of fundy mud and the very nessessary rinse soon after (my daughter was holding the camera and managed to get a bunch of mud on it).
-an accidental diet coke spill and the much-needed rinsing off.
-several days of photographing storm clouds and getting nailed with rain in the process.
QuoteOriginally posted by Chaos_Realm Quote
There was someone on the forums not so long ago ( I can't find the thread at the minute though) who was photographing sycronized swimming. He would submerge the K-5 and 16-50 DA* to get some of the under water shots. Rain will be fine.
QuoteOriginally posted by Docrwm Quote
Relax, its a good camera with excellent weather seals. I used my K5+18-135 combo in the rain in Florida a couple of months ago at a NASA launch (that was scrubbed because of the weather) and was the only non-Pro out in the much still shooting. No worries.
QuoteOriginally posted by doug13 Quote
i left mine under the cold shower for 6 straight hours, i had to test it cause it was a k5 with the improved seals that they used on the k30, dont ask how i got it, lets just say i also got a k30 in may. they both perform the same after 6 hours of non stop shower. I never trusted a camera nor a manufacture like i trust Pentax
Finally see this thread and focus on posts 4 & 5 - I collected approximately 100 photos taken of/with Pentax DSLR's in extremely adverse environments:

Post your WR picture [Page 1]: Pentax SLR Talk Forum: Digital Photography Review

In conclusion, I think it is extremely immature, shortsighted, and reactionary to exclaim "water resistant my ass!" without being a responsible consumer who does his research. Ultimately all you have accomplished is placing a completely unwarranted and undeserving stigma upon a company that has otherwise delivered far beyond their claims of 'weather resistance." Like I said - there is no such thing as the perfect factory/assembly line - some products will inevitably fail and you probably just got one from a bad batch - it happens. Sucks, and I'm sorry it did, but have faith that that is not the norm. Far from it:

QuoteOriginally posted by Tom S. Quote
On your advice, I Googled "Water in Pentax Camera". There was only one hit in the first 5 pages, and it was about an Optio from 2010.

Last edited by Heie; 08-03-2013 at 12:28 AM.
09-14-2012, 09:26 PM   #42
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So Heie, what is Pentax paying you?
09-14-2012, 09:42 PM   #43
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
There are times when I get condensation in the back of K-5 , and I have to admit.. it is really annoying. It always happens when it's cold and your hands are freezing... just to add insult to injury. But I'm not sure it's a problem with the seals. There's bound to be moisture in the camera from changing lenses on humid days etc.... so what can you do?
Seals will not stop internal condensation from forming, and they might even make it worse. Since condensation is a function of relative humidity and the temperature difference between the inside and outside, the seals are not going to stop it.

Seals might even make condensation worse as they keep the inside environment from equalizing with the outside environment (or at least slow the equalization), and also inhibit airflow between inside and outside, making the drying out of the interior slower as well.

There really isn't much to be done about it. In some of the products we make where I work, we have to purge the interior areas of the equipment with dry air when they are installed in the sort of environment that might result in interior condensation.

Kind of hard to carry a nitrogen bottle hooked the the camera though.

09-14-2012, 10:06 PM   #44

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QuoteOriginally posted by fantasysage Quote
So Heie, what is Pentax paying you?
Nothing, I'd say.
Part of what he posted was that he suggested to them they should market WR better, but they haven't replied to him on the subject.
09-14-2012, 10:13 PM - 2 Likes   #45
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QuoteOriginally posted by fantasysage Quote
So Heie, what is Pentax paying you?
I'm surprised Pentax doesn't make use of this set of testimonials and followup on the suggestion. I don't see evidence of payment in the comments, just a genuine appreciation of the brand.

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