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03-01-2015, 03:39 PM   #1
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Is SD card failing or K-5 dying?

Have a K-5 with about 43K actuations and a 32GB Transcend Class 10 UHS card that I bought about a year ago. Based on my image archive I'd say I've only made about 5K DNG's with this card, though I do most always shoot raw+jpeg and sometimes switch to just jpeg when doing stitches.... Lately (this year) I also started shooting the jpegs at full size/quality instead of at 6mp... So maybe there've been 10-13K writes to the card, roughly...

Sorry that my details are fuzzy but I haven't been shooting a lot lately so haven't been paying close attention... Last week or maybe a couple weeks ago I had the camera tell me the card wasn't formatted (I think that was the message)... There was definitely some kind of issue and I can't remember what I did, but I'm guessing I pulled it out and put it back in then formatted it, then the card ended up working fine a couple more times (I think), until yesterday when I did a (free) engagement shoot for friends... With the first test shot the camera locked up and I had to take the battery out to get it to unlock. There was some message about the card, and I am pretty sure it was about it not being formatted and then it wouldn't format or something... I was in a hurry so don't remember for sure what the message was and decided to not trust it.

The shoot fortunately started in my back yard so I ran into my room and got one of my two old "Super Talent" 16GB class 10 SD cards that I bought in 2012. Between those other two cards I did all the other actuations on my K-5. I did the shoot, which was roughly 250 (raw+jpg) shots. Because I switched to the slower 16GB card, I switched it to only 6mp jpegs. After the shoot I gave the card to my friend when we were done so he could copy the shots for himself and identify the keepers... He came back later saying the card locked up on him and was now saying it needed to be formatted. I had to run data recovery on it and salvaged three fourths of the shots but lost some good ones due to corruption... And some of the good shots that were salvaged are only 6mp.... Bummer. Long story short, once this happened I did recall some issues with one of my old 16GB cards (though none this bad), and I guess I picked the wrong one off the shelf.... Thank God this was a free shoot and they didn't have high expectations.

So today I popped the 32GB card in and there are seemingly no problems with it whatsoever. Do you think it's the card starting to have problems? Would it just be fine the next day like this? Or is my K-5 starting to have issues? I am going to do some test shooting later with both the 32GB card and my other old 16GB card to see where this all leaves me.... Does anybody know the typical life expectancy (number of writes) for one of these cards?

03-01-2015, 03:52 PM   #2
hcc
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Your description reminded me of my problems with an old card. It s too easy to have some problem with an old card. Throw away the old cards.

Get a new card. Consider a high quality Sandisk card. And format it in-camera.

Hope that the comment will help.
03-01-2015, 03:54 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by todd Quote
Does anybody know the typical life expectancy (number of writes) for one of these cards?
Might get that from the manufacturer's web site. I imagine all brands would have a different spec.

My procedure for cards is to format them in camera every time I put one in. That gives me a fresh card and I don't have to look embarrassed when it says card full after 10 shots because I forgot to delete the previous shoot.

I also give a card only one bite. If I get an error, I reformat it and then if the same card gives me another error it goes in the trash. Cards are cheap, missed shots or lost shots are priceless potentially.

I now also only use Sandisk Extreme Pro cards. I've never had an error or issue with any of those since switching. They are more expensive but I cannot afford to have a card problem.
03-01-2015, 03:57 PM   #4
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something similar posted earlier today......not sure if it will help but problems seem 'similar'
https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/58-troubleshooting-beginner-help/289831-m...ally-dead.html

03-01-2015, 03:58 PM   #5
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I have had error messages with one Sandisk Extreme 32gb card recently. The click on the Lock slider apparently wore off and inserting the card locked it. I threw the card away.
03-01-2015, 03:59 PM   #6
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Yep , Format the CARD FULLY .. Don't do a quick format - do a full format ..
If the card refuses to do a full format , you have a problem card .. If it does the Full ( Slow ) format , then hopefully it will run much better afterwards ..
There is a piece of software called SD card formatter or some such , it may do a better job than your OS .
03-01-2015, 04:39 PM   #7
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Seems like I also had a similar problem a couple of years back with a "bad card".
You now have some good advice from what I am reading in the previous posts.

Also: if you think your K5 is dying ... how many shutter actuations does it have?
Mine still runs fine after over 85,000 !
03-01-2015, 04:52 PM   #8
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thanks for the input. great idea to do a full format on the card.

03-01-2015, 06:17 PM   #9
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I have a different idea. It's worth a shot.

I have a K5 (and now a K3) and before I got the K3 my camera body started acting up and giving me all sorts of errors. I thought to myself 'oh great this thing is gonna die on me'.

Turns out I was using a third party battery and I had two bum batteries. They lasted about two years but when I went back to an original battery all the error messages stopped. Then eventually when I tried to charge the 3rd party batteries they wouldn't hold a charge. This was my clue.

It's worth a try... who knows. If it is the card those are easy and cheap to replace.
03-01-2015, 08:13 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by alamo5000 Quote
I have a different idea. It's worth a shot.

I have a K5 (and now a K3) and before I got the K3 my camera body started acting up and giving me all sorts of errors. I thought to myself 'oh great this thing is gonna die on me'.

Turns out I was using a third party battery and I had two bum batteries. They lasted about two years but when I went back to an original battery all the error messages stopped. Then eventually when I tried to charge the 3rd party batteries they wouldn't hold a charge. This was my clue.

It's worth a try... who knows. If it is the card those are easy and cheap to replace.
Yup, had exactly the same problem - battery!
03-01-2015, 08:44 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by alamo5000 Quote
worth a shot.
Good point as I've been using mostly just the original battery since I got my K5 in 2012, so for almost all the 43K actuations... I bought a backup when I got the camera but it's super lame (a 'Maximum Power' that is anything but) and I almost never use it.. Camera was on a fresh charge yesterday though when it locked up, and even after those few hundred shots from yesterday it was still showing full bars...
03-01-2015, 08:50 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by todd Quote
Good point as I've been using mostly just the original battery since I got my K5 in 2012, so for almost all the 43K actuations... I bought a backup when I got the camera but it's super lame (a 'Maximum Power' that is anything but) and I almost never use it.. Camera was on a fresh charge yesterday though when it locked up, and even after those few hundred shots from yesterday it was still showing full bars...
Just a thought, but you might want to try cleaning the battery contacts. Both on the battery and in the camera. Usually just a buff with a microfiber cloth is all it takes though if you actually see tarnish you might need electrical contact cleaner.

Might not help, but a little tarnish can add enough resistance to make the camera react erratically.
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