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08-14-2010, 06:13 AM   #1
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Leave K20D Outside at Beach?


Although I have been a Pentax DSLR user for several years and a member of Pentax Forums for a while, I still feel like this is a beginner's question. I am going to the beach shortly and will be taking my K20D along. In the past I have been hesitant to take the camera out of the A/C when the relative humidity was high because of condensation in both the lens and on the camera electronics. Consequently I have missed some great shots. Since we will be renting (for one week) a house with a very large covered, screened porch, I can safely leave the camera outside without it being exposed to rain or sunlight. This would eliminate any condensation, but would expose it to relative humidities ranging from 50% to 70%. Which course of action is preferable- In and out of A/C or leave in protected area outside until needed?

Thank you for your patience.

William Walter

08-14-2010, 09:06 AM   #2
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If you have a weather sealed lens, then leaving the camera outside for a while shouldn't damage anything. You should still keep it indoors when possible, however, and you obviously don't want to expose it to excessive humidity or sand - just to stay on the safe side.

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08-14-2010, 09:49 PM   #3
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Hi Bill, worry about same, always try to 'temper' gear myself use small coolers and stuff to insulate in manner to avoid any quick temperature changes.
My opinion and my opinion only, "quick changes are the dangerous ones"
Obviously dont want extended periods of direct sunlight,betcha got umbrella already.
nice to have a little air circulating if possible.
Good thing about eyeglasses(if you can call it that) is if I go outside from A/C'd
place and mist forms on lenses, I know cant take gear out without possible problems.
Try a drinking glass(dry), take outside, if condensation forms, might want to wrap stuff
up and let it warm 'gently' outside.
never had any problems in summer, did cause my m100/4 macro to frost inside front
element last winter, was -4(F),was chasing a goofey bird, came inside and didnt let it warm gently.condensation formed, dried, leaving frost.
08-14-2010, 10:18 PM   #4
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Hi Bill,
I've had the same problem in reverse in antarctic and sub-antartic. Cold ouside - warm hut. What worked for me was to put the camera in a zip lock bag before going inside and waiting until the camera warmed up slowly. The bag would be good to keep sand off the camera too when your'e not using it.
regards, Rob

08-14-2010, 11:47 PM   #5
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I think the change in temperature would have to be pretty drastic for condensation to build up. Going from A/C to outside I don't think is going from cold enough to hot enough for you to have to worry (unless the AC is freezing and outside is >100 F. But if the change in temp is drastic and you are worried I would not leave it outside in the protected porch beacase I think that would be more of a condensation hazard. I would just leave the camera in your camera bag and wait a little bit until the camera warms up (when going outside) and cools down (when coming back home) before you take the camera out of the bag.
08-15-2010, 05:11 AM   #6
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RE: Leave K20D Outside----

Hello to all,

Thanks for the input. Adam, since neither the camera nor lens are weather sealed, I think I will try the isolate and allow to warm to ambient temp strategy rather than leaving it outside. This seems like the best approach. There have been times when the relative humidity was so high (early am) that a thin film of moisture developed on my eyeglasses within seconds after stepping outside. I'm sure the same thing would happen with the camera and lens.

Again, thanks for the suggestions! People on this forum are the greatest!

William Walter
08-15-2010, 05:44 AM   #7
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When I go to the beach, I would leave my bag in the car overnight so I could get early morning pics without the condensation. The wife likes to keep it cold like a meat locker in the cottage.
08-15-2010, 04:52 PM   #8
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You might want to toss a towel or cloth over it if you are going to leave it outside. If you are going to be in a house on the beach, there will be an ocean breeze 99.9% of the time. This breeze will have salt in it. Salt is not good for cameras, or almost anything else. I grew up on the beach and know the havoc that wonderful air can create on things. Used to amaze me to wake up in the mornings and see a fine film of salt on my alarm clock because I had left my window open to catch the breeze.


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