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11-01-2014, 07:12 AM   #1
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Random K-3 shutter problem

Just got back from a wonderful trip to Tuscany where I led my ten-day photo workshop. We had great weather and the students were in heaven! For me, everything went perfectly with one exception: my Pentax K-3 shutter would occasionally "misfire" with the result of a black photo. The following screenshot shows the random behavior. Here we see a series of brackets (regular, -1, +1) and every once and a while the shutter wouldn't actuate (see images circled in red). It seemed to happen mostly early in the day after the camera had had time to sleep from the previous day's exercise.

Thoughts?

Michael

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11-01-2014, 07:20 AM   #2
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Dd this only happen when bracket shooting? I have had this problem while using a flash, and thought it was the flash not firing, but now I am wondering......
11-01-2014, 07:42 AM   #3
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I have had that happen once, sometime in the first couple of months I had the camera, but I don't think its happened again in the last 8 months. The time it did happen, I was experimenting with focus tracking in continuous shooting and AFC mode. Hopefully its some temporary aberration.

John
11-01-2014, 08:48 AM   #4
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Have you noticed if the camera was reseted. Firmware 1.11 came with a reset function if the mirror flopp issue was to appear. Maybe that is what happened, it wanted to mirror flopp but the camera said no and got reset with a black frame as result.

11-01-2014, 10:11 AM   #5
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one thing it did was make a distinctive noise -- I could tell immediately when it happened.
I'll try it with no bracketing and different lenses to see if there is a discernible pattern.

M
11-01-2014, 11:38 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by MJSfoto1956 Quote
one thing it did was make a distinctive noise -- I could tell immediately when it happened.
I'll try it with no bracketing and different lenses to see if there is a discernible pattern.

M
Hmmmm...time to call Ricoh/Pentax for warranty service I would say.


Steve
11-01-2014, 01:15 PM   #7
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I have something similar on my old 40k click K-5. I've found it's not a completely black frame but just a very (like -5) underexposed frame that's captured. It happens once every 200-1000 shots.

I'm just sharing this so you know it's at least not a unique problem you have. In my case it always happens on the first frame after a longer shooting pause, my workaround is a habit of firing a throwaway shot first thing after every power-on.

Take it in for warranty repair. Shutters do fail and you have lots of evidence.

Regards,
--Anders.
11-01-2014, 01:24 PM   #8
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well these images are pure black -- put through RAW processing the only data is thermal noise. Basically, the shutter did not engage.

M

11-01-2014, 07:00 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by MJSfoto1956 Quote
well these images are pure black -- put through RAW processing the only data is thermal noise. Basically, the shutter did not engage.

M
That sounds like firmware v1.11 doing its job. The runaway mirror issue is present, but just not given free run. A blank frame is the result.


Steve
11-01-2014, 07:38 PM   #10
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Was the camera set for one-push bracketing? Is f/w v1.11 perhaps interpreting that as mirror flopping? I've only used bracketing a couple of times (1-push), but haven't had that problem.
11-02-2014, 07:23 AM - 1 Like   #11
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yes, one-push bracketing is indeed set -- a key feature that I love of Pentax (among others). I'm thinking that this is indeed an interpretation of mirror flopping. I will research more and report back as I have more information.

Thanks for the feedback.

M
11-02-2014, 10:17 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
That sounds like firmware v1.11 doing its job. The runaway mirror issue is present, but just not given free run. A blank frame is the result.


Steve
The blank frame I had was in January or February, way before v1.11, and there was no mirror flop runnaway in that case. I have had a few mirror flop instances since v1.11 but none of them resulted in a blank frame.

John.
11-02-2014, 11:13 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by jhmos Quote
I have had a few mirror flop instances since v1.11 but none of them resulted in a blank frame.
You have a problem. Send your camera in for warranty service while it is still available.


Steve
11-02-2014, 11:17 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
You have a problem. Send your camera in for warranty service while it is still available.


Steve
Your right, I will send it in. I just wanted to wait till after my trip to Europe. I think it did the mirror flop reset 2 or 3 times in almost 4000 frames while I was away, so it is usable. Not looking forward to losing it for perhaps some months though.

John.
11-03-2014, 05:45 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by jhmos Quote
Not looking forward to losing it for perhaps some months though.
I hear you there. Enjoy the remainder of your trip!


Steve
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