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08-16-2015, 03:49 PM   #1
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Weird Eneloop behavior in Kx

My Pentax cameras seem to be incredibly finicky about what batteries they'll take. My K100D prefers CR-V3 battery packs to AA's, but it likes only one of the two rechargeable sets I have. My K2000, of course, takes only AA's and seems to like Eneloops best. No other rechargeable or alkaline batteries ever register a full charge on that camera and some won't power it up at all. I would have thought the Kx I just acquired would also like Eneloops but it doesn't seem to.

I have three sets of Eneloops, all Sanyo brand. Two sets are about 10 years old and one is essentially new old stock. I got them about three years ago but they stayed in the blister pack until I opened them up Friday night. Because they had been sitting in the package so long, I immediately put them in the charger overnight. I put this newest set, freshly charged, in my Kx and the camera wouldn't even come on. I then tried both of the older sets and the battery indicator showed yellow on one and red on the other. These also had been fully charged within the past 36 hours. To make matters weirder, and all three sets give a green battery indicator in the K100D. What the Kx does seem to like okay is disposable alkalines. It registers a full charge with any fresh alkaline batteries I put in there. How long they'll last is another matter entirely. I haven't tried lithium batteries yet but I just might. There's no question that these cameras are high-drain devices, so I'd really prefer to use rechargeable batteries. It's better for both the environment and my wallet.

08-16-2015, 04:12 PM   #2
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What charger are you using? Not all are equal when it comes to Eneloops.
And when using Eneloops with the K-x, have you manually selected 'NiMh' as the power source in the camera menu?

I would also suggest updating the K-x to the latest firmware (v1.03) if you aren't running 1.03 already. They made some improvements to battery metering over time in the K-x firmware.
08-16-2015, 04:34 PM   #3
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If I remember right there was a setting on the k-x to tell it whether you had regular or rechargeable batteries in. Makes no difference to how long they last but it does make a difference on the battery charge indicator.

Also, there were several firmware updates on the k-x that changed the battery usage, make sure you have the latest firmware.

And in the end on my k-x I just ignored the charge indicator because it would turn yellow after only 50 shots or so then last another 400 plus. It might be the indicator, not the batteries.
08-16-2015, 05:28 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by jatrax Quote
in the end on my k-x I just ignored the charge indicator because it would turn yellow after only 50 shots or so then last another 400 plus
Same here. The weird metering is part of the charm and personality of the K-x. .
Just always make sure you have a spare set of AA's in the camera bag, and it's all good.

08-16-2015, 07:25 PM   #5
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I'm charging them with the Sanyo Eneloop charger that came with the older batteries. I went through the menus this afternoon but didn't see anything referring to power source. I'll have another look, though. I'm kind of scared of updating firmware after I bricked a perfectly good *istDL when attempting to do that three years ago.

UPDATE: I went back through the menus and found the battery selection. I changed it from "Auto" to "NiMH", turned it off, put in a set of Eneloops and turned it back on (had to try the switch twice before it responded). The Screen said "Battery Depleted" and the camera shut itself off. I took the batteries back out and put them in the K-2000, where the indicator showed green. I put alkaline batteries back in the K-x, turned it on, went back into the battery menu and selected "Auto" again and got a green indicator. I then went and got the newest set of Eneloops, which I had put back on the charger after the camera had failed to respond to them earlier this afternoon, I put them in the K-x, turned the camera on (it again took two tries for the camera to respond) and with the battery select still on "Auto" the indicator is now showing green.

QuoteOriginally posted by rawr Quote
What charger are you using? Not all are equal when it comes to Eneloops.
And when using Eneloops with the K-x, have you manually selected 'NiMh' as the power source in the camera menu?

I would also suggest updating the K-x to the latest firmware (v1.03) if you aren't running 1.03 already. They made some improvements to battery metering over time in the K-x firmware.

Last edited by E-man; 08-16-2015 at 08:10 PM. Reason: updated info
08-16-2015, 07:36 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by rawr Quote
And when using Eneloops with the K-x, have you manually selected 'NiMh' as the power source in the camera menu?

+1 for that check.


"Select Battery" is in the third page of the setup menu.
08-16-2015, 07:47 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by E-man Quote
I'm kind of scared of updating firmware after I bricked a perfectly good *istDL when attempting to do that three years ago.
I totally understand that but if you are still using v1 firmware on the k-x there were several very important updates.
08-16-2015, 08:15 PM   #8
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I have no idea what firmware is on the camera. How do I determine that?

QuoteOriginally posted by jatrax Quote
I totally understand that but if you are still using v1 firmware on the k-x there were several very important updates.


08-16-2015, 10:09 PM   #9
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Long time since I used the k-x. I think if you hold down the menu button while turning it on it will display the firmware version. Should also be in the EXIF I think.
08-16-2015, 11:22 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by jatrax Quote
I think if you hold down the menu button while turning it on it will display the firmware version.
Confirmed on my K-x.
I also just noticed mine was still on v1.02. Time for me to update as well.
08-17-2015, 04:49 AM   #11
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That worked. I do have verstion 1.0. Thanks.
08-17-2015, 08:29 AM   #12
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I had good luck with Eneloops...but the battery indicator always turned yellow within about 50 shots. It just annoyed me to no end.....I ended up using Lithium AA's and found that was a decent solution. SAMS, COSTCO, etc used to offer large packs of 16 or 20, and that was my solution to the issue....

Good luck...
08-17-2015, 09:02 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by E-man Quote
That worked. I do have version 1.0. Thanks.
It has been a while but if I remember correctly there were a number of things that were fixed in firmware updates. Sometimes these updates seem to make no difference but on the k-x it made a noticeable one and was strongly recommended.

Here is the link: Firmware Update Software for K-x | Software Downloads?RICOH IMAGING CANADA
08-17-2015, 09:19 AM   #14
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Yes, I plan to pick up some lithium cells next time I'm at Sam's and will stick a fresh set in the camera if/when I ever decide to do the firmware update.
08-18-2015, 05:45 PM   #15
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Whew!!!!

Nearly three years, almost to the day, after needlessly killing a perfectly good *ist-DL with a firmware update gone horribly wrong, I just summoned up the courage to successfully update my K-x to 1.03! My hands were literally shaking as I held down the menu button and flipped the power switch and my heart was about to beat out of my chest as I watched the progress bar go across. Scary, scary, scary. I'll be interested to see how it likes the Eneloops now, but for the time being, it's running on a set of Energizer Ultimate Lithium cells that I put in fresh out of the package for the update.
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