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07-12-2010, 08:31 AM   #1
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Please excuse me - I'm new!

Hi there,

I'm a first time DSLR user and am super super excited at my swanky new Pentax Kx that I purchased recently. I am booked to do a beginners DSLR course but in the meantime I have been having a few problems.

First off - the manual is like gobbledy goop to me as I dont have the first clue so have just taken out like a point and shoot. But my flash isnt working? It was fine to start and now all of a sudden it wont work - no matter what setting or mode I have it in? A little disappointing and I dont know how to fix it. Anyone else had the same problem?

Lastly, I have the extra lens as well which I know will be just great when I go to do the course but I was wondering if anyone could help me with an over the shoulder bag? Do you have one that you woulld recommend I purchase?

Many thanks in advance!


07-12-2010, 08:52 AM   #2
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Welcome aboard!

Re the flash... Are you saying it won't Open or that it doesn't fire once opened? If I remember correctly, the flash will not engage unless it's called for in exposure. I know you said it worked before and you've tried all modes. Maybe your ISO is too high to need a flash? Perhaps the batteries are weak? (don't know, just throwing out suggestions).

Last edited by JeffJS; 07-12-2010 at 08:59 AM.
07-12-2010, 08:59 AM   #3
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Hi JeffJS,

Thanks for your response. Yeah it pops up OK it just doesnt work? Im scared I've hit a setting or busted it already

I have tried it in Manual mode and pressing the up button but it still wont go. ALso took it out to a night show while on holiday and even in darkness with lights on stage nothing happened. My pictures came out pitch black. I have my ISO currently set on 400 but havent had it set any higher then that as that was the recommended level. Bit confused .......
07-12-2010, 09:09 AM   #4
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ISO 400 shouldn't be enough to compensate for darkness you described. Try putting it in complete auto mode (AUTO PICT on the mode dial), then take it into a dark room and take a picture. If flash is up and doesn't fire, that might mean your flash is dead or otherwise non-functional.

For more camera forensic type investigation, you might want to post a picture. Not necessarily to glean info from the picture itself, but the EXIF metadata (data about the picture and camera itself) that is embedded in each picture that you take.

07-12-2010, 09:15 AM   #5
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Maybe it's something as simple as your flash setting.. Pg 67 of your manual.. I'd bet that somewhere you or someone else played with the buttons and inadvertently set something to where you don't want it to be. I would try a Reset, pg 280, before I assume things Just aren't working. I might also suggest reflashing or updating the firmware on the camera (be very careful with this and follow the instructions EXACTLY).

If you can upload a FULL Unmodified JPG somewhere, someone may be able to pick out what is going on.

I don't own a Kx but there are common across model causes for a lot of things.

07-12-2010, 09:37 AM   #6
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I understand your confusion with the book, you might want to check out Yvon Bourque's e-book on the K-x. It's laid out better than the instruction manual that comes with the camera. Go to his blog here for information on purchasing the e-book.
07-12-2010, 10:20 AM   #7
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Regardless of what ISO you have set or whether the flash fires, you shouldn't be getting completely black pictures if there is anything at all in the scene to photograph. If nothing else, the camera should be setting a very slow shutter speed so you'd get a blurry mess, but a black picture would be the result of choosing too fast a shutter speed. While it's conceivable there is a camera problem, it's more likely it's something you've set incorrectly and then forgotten you did (like dialing in the maximum amount of exposure compensation, for example). I'd recommend a basic book on photography - doesn't even have to be specific to the K-x, as the concepts are common to all cameras. Once you get more familiar with how exposure works you'll better be able to diagnose problems on your own. Meanwhile, maybe find a friend who is more experienced to help out - they'll know what to be checking for and can work with you and the camera manual to find out how to reset exposure compensation, etc.

BTW, once you do get it sorted out, I think you'll find ISO 400 nowhere near high enough for most stage productions. More likely, you'll be in the 1600-6400 range, depending on the lens you are using and what its maximum aperture is.

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