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04-09-2011, 10:06 AM   #1
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Camera hit ground --> Memory card error.

Short story:
Camera fell, top body plate cracked.
Something inside came loose or is broken now so it can't read memory cards anymore.
Result: I can't save or review pictures.

What can I do?

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Longer story:
For some incomprehensible reasons the karabiner (you know, these hooks that snap into lock position) somehow opened itself letting my camera (Samsung GX20) hit the ground from about 70cm/2.3ft.

After-math:
Top plate cracked forcing the top display cover to pop out.
The camera was hanging upside-down when hitting the ground - impact was next to the AE-L button.

After putting it back together - forcing the cracked plate back in and "reassembling" the top display cover it didn't look too bad.
Fortunately the lens took no damage.

But since then the memory card can't be used/read leaving me with "Mermory card error" on the main display.
I'm sure the card is fine so it must be something on the inside of the camera that came loose or even broke (unlikely). Probably just some contacts next to the memory card slot.

Electronics and mechanics are fine otherwise. Without a memory card everything works just fine. Shutter works, AF is okay, display is unharmed and all setting can be accessed. Just like it should.
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Any idea what to do with that thing?
I need a working camera until friday next week.
It's not like my life depends on my camera but I can't live without one and can't wait several weeks until it would be fixed by a repair center.

From what I've read Samsung's customer service is horrible and I'm quite sure the issue I have could be fixed easily (if it's just a loosened/broken contact).

So...well, I wanted the K5 since it's out and I wanted to retire the GX20 this year anyway but the K5 still is about 1100€ (+ battery grip).
I'd go for a used K5 immidiately but they simply are next to none.

AHHHHHHH!!!!!

04-09-2011, 04:03 PM   #2
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Sorry to hear about your camera’s mishap. You’re getting a “Memory Card Error” as opposed to an “Insert Memory Card”. So, somehow the camera is reading the card. I would try another card just for process of elimination. The way I see it though, you have three choices. 1) If you’re comfortable and knowledgeable enough, open the camera yourself and see what may have broken or gotten loose inside and if it is easily repairable. 2) Take your camera to a local camera repair shop (authorized service center or not) and have them see what they can do for you and at what cost. 3) Deal with Samsung and see what your options are.

Good luck!
04-09-2011, 05:24 PM   #3
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No. Not like that.
The Memory card error only appears with a card actually in the slot.
Without a card all I get is "no card in camera" - just like it should be.
I can even take pictures then - they just can't be saved or reviewed for logical reasons.

I have 2 cards. Same result. I can totally rule out card failure.

1) No. I'm not to bad with mechanics but electronics are evil. I don't like them, they don't like me.
Probably I could even fix it but I don't want to risk more than what is already "broken".

2) Don't know a local repair shop yet - I'm not even sure if something like this exists...but if you say so I guess you're right.

3) Sigh...
I'm pretty sure they would offer me to do it fo several hundres dollars (I sense up to 300) while needing at least 3 weeks to get it done.

I don't know: Maybe I just want to be encouraged to buy a K5...
It has to happen someday. It just shouldn't happen now when it's still so expensive.
04-09-2011, 08:09 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by Egg Salad Quote
No. Not like that.
The Memory card error only appears with a card actually in the slot.
Without a card all I get is "no card in camera" - just like it should be.
I can even take pictures then - they just can't be saved or reviewed for logical reasons.

I have 2 cards. Same result. I can totally rule out card failure.

1) No. I'm not to bad with mechanics but electronics are evil. I don't like them, they don't like me.
Probably I could even fix it but I don't want to risk more than what is already "broken".

2) Don't know a local repair shop yet - I'm not even sure if something like this exists...but if you say so I guess you're right.

3) Sigh...
I'm pretty sure they would offer me to do it fo several hundres dollars (I sense up to 300) while needing at least 3 weeks to get it done.

I don't know: Maybe I just want to be encouraged to buy a K5...
It has to happen someday. It just shouldn't happen now when it's still so expensive.
I'm encouraging you to do so.

To what to do with the camera? Try turning it into a permanent tethered camera.

Your fall compromised the screen, which is right next to the card slot. Most likely, the card slot has become deformed in some way so the card cannot make reliable contact. Or, one or more of the contacts is loose. A broken solder joint is also possible. The trouble with That is, they are next to impossible to see most times. Most of the main components in the camera are connected together by ribbon cables of some sort. Most are held in place by Friction connectors. It MAY be a simple matter of re-seating the one for the card slot.

These are all simple things to look for, that require no special electronic knowledge, if you're inclined to take the camera body apart. At this point, it's probably not under warranty so the only thing you risk is having to pay a higher fee to have it repaired (at which point you're better off replacing it). One thing is for certain right now. You cannot use it as is. What do you have to lose by trying to fix it yourself?



04-09-2011, 11:56 PM   #5
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Have you tried formating the card? It probably won't work but it's worth a shot.
04-10-2011, 12:04 AM   #6
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I know the K10d had a reputation for the connector between the memory card and the main board breaking loose and causing card errors if the camera had a hard impact. Since the K20/GX20 shared the same body the same problem may also affect it.
04-10-2011, 02:00 AM   #7
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My daughter had this happen to her K10D some weeks ago. There was no damage visible on the body. It was inside a bag when it fell. It was sent in to Pentax for a quote.
Price was 560 EUR.
04-10-2011, 02:20 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Bart Quote
My daughter had this happen to her K10D some weeks ago. There was no damage visible on the body. It was inside a bag when it fell. It was sent in to Pentax for a quote.
Price was 560 EUR.
That's just plain ridiculous (and I don't even know what the current exchange rate is to $$). Hope she gets back up and running with something soon.



04-10-2011, 04:30 AM   #9
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1 EUR = 1,4482 USD

but everything is more expensive over here, I believe.
She decided to get a K5 instead. And as a reference point: that is 1.079 EUR (=1.562,61 USD) "thanks" to VAT
04-10-2011, 04:34 AM   #10
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Jeff,
Tethering would be a nice solution if it would work. Samsung sucks even more than Pentax in this respect. You can't tether them.

What you say sounds realistic. Not really a big damage but hard to spot or to repair. I suspect this is a financial total loss. I wanted to retire it like I said. But I originally thought I could get some money back - because before yesterday it was in great shape...

And of course it's as out of waranty as it's technically possible.
Perfect.

I have the GX10's service manual so I know how it looks inside. I'm not to warried about taking it apart. It's more the fact that I had to rebuilt it. Taking something apart is always easier (see nuclear fusion).

Info: 1 € = 1.4434 US$
But I would rate it more like 1:1. At least camera prices indicate this.

cats_five,
Yes, I did.
It starts with the formatting process and then falls back to the Memory card error screen.

Steinback,
Yeah, that's also my assumption. But I don't think I can fix it myself.

Bart,
Thats exactly what I expect to happen which makes it so bitter. Nothing is really totaled but fixing it isn't profitable.

EDIT:
Additional info that shouldn't surprise anyone: The memory card LED on the back of the camera doesn't light up when a card is fit in.
This doesn't help does it?

Last edited by Egg Salad; 04-10-2011 at 11:13 AM.
04-11-2011, 02:56 PM   #11
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Hmmm yeah, just ordered a used K5 through Amazon.
Because youknow, as a student you just have masses of cash flying around.

We'll see if I get one that is not flawed...
I know my luck but there is nothing to do but wait.
(Buyer's remorse)

Oh and here are two pictures of the damage on my GX20


Cell phone camera...

Last edited by Egg Salad; 04-11-2011 at 03:04 PM.
04-12-2011, 11:34 AM   #12
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Best of luck with the K5!
And if you do get a 'spotted' one, Pentax is supposed to replace it easily.
04-12-2011, 11:44 AM   #13
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I know they do but replacements always take time.
A little worried about the possible low light AF malfunction, also.
04-12-2011, 03:55 PM   #14
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At this point, I wouldn't be to worried about getting a 'spotted' K5. AF FF may be another issue but don't lose sleep over it until you have to (when it really affects you).

04-13-2011, 09:49 AM   #15
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Like always, Amazon surprised my positively.
Camera arrived today instead of tomorrow like they claimed and I can't find the flaws I should get (signs of use on the front).
Battery is charging but I still really like the new grip.

Mode dial lock is a pita, though.

Serial number is 398xxxx
More soon.
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