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04-30-2016, 12:10 PM   #1
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*ist DS2 operates on A/C power only

Hi all,

First post so far -- mainly lurking and researching. I've been researching new camera bodies to replace my old *ist DS2, but I figured I'd try a few shots with it before replacing it. However, it won't run off either fully charged NiMH (1.3-1.4v) or fresh Alkaline (1.55v).

Obviously I'm not looking to spend much (any) money fixing it, but I'm wondering if there's some easy "fix" like a secondary watch battery somewhere. Any tips would be greatly appreciated!

04-30-2016, 12:39 PM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by redmenace Quote
Hi all,

First post so far -- mainly lurking and researching. I've been researching new camera bodies to replace my old *ist DS2, but I figured I'd try a few shots with it before replacing it. However, it won't run off either fully charged NiMH (1.3-1.4v) or fresh Alkaline (1.55v).

Obviously I'm not looking to spend much (any) money fixing it, but I'm wondering if there's some easy "fix" like a secondary watch battery somewhere. Any tips would be greatly appreciated!
The best would be to inspect if your batteries are touching all the contacts in the battery compartment properly. If everything is ok there, you have a desoldered contact (the smallest possible problem) or some other obstacle on the power pathway, possibly on the motherboard.

You could bring power from the batteries to the D/C port via two thin wires, cutting the previous connecting points before.

This worked on my k100d for a while after some pathway on the motherboard got fried. Approx 2000 actuations after it was dead, started to flap the mirror like crazy and then it showed the battery empty symbol. Today it does not show anything and I don't think it's worthy to tinker around it any more.
04-30-2016, 12:51 PM   #3
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You might just have a dead battery, i.e., a battery no longer charging. Just my $0.02.
04-30-2016, 02:24 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by wtlwdwgn Quote
You might just have a dead battery, i.e., a battery no longer charging. Just my $0.02.
My own istD happens to be suffering from the same ailment as the OP's here. I've seen a few other threads reporting similar problems, and I've been wondering about something.

In my past, I've had to use and therefore often sustain some absolutely geriatric electronic equipment. About the first course of action in troubleshooting, after checking that power is applied and the power switch is on, is to look for liquid-chemical electrolytic capacitors. These guys can be expected to fail after about 5-10 years, and more often than not, replacement will restore devices that have stopped working for no apparent reason. These are the symptoms with failed istD's.

Since capacitors are typically a few $, but getting to them in camera is fraught with great danger (to the camera),
1. Has anyone here actually successfully fixed this problem?
2. Has anyone unsuccessfully mangled their camera sufficiently to have picked up any helpful info?
3. Does anyone have an idea of how other parties do repairs?
4. Is capacitor replacement is involved in the process?
5. Does anyone have access to the camera schematics?

Not wanting to ask for too much ;-), I'll stop here.

Gerry

---------- Post added 04-30-16 at 02:36 PM ----------

I left out an important part: often, capacitors fail by a drop in their internal resistance; that is, their electrical leakage goes up. This will place an extra load on the power supply. If that's a battery, the drain can be large enough to drop its terminal value below the voltage necessary for camera operation, even for a battery in good condition. On the other hand, the output from an AC wall-wart supply is more robust and will maintain its output even if the current drain goes up. (If the drain is bad enough, the first symptom is likely to be overheating of something.)

Exactly the symptoms discussed here.

Gerry

04-30-2016, 03:15 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by eyeball Quote
My own istD happens to be suffering from the same ailment as the OP's here. I've seen a few other threads reporting similar problems, and I've been wondering about something.

In my past, I've had to use and therefore often sustain some absolutely geriatric electronic equipment. About the first course of action in troubleshooting, after checking that power is applied and the power switch is on, is to look for liquid-chemical electrolytic capacitors. These guys can be expected to fail after about 5-10 years, and more often than not, replacement will restore devices that have stopped working for no apparent reason. These are the symptoms with failed istD's.

Since capacitors are typically a few $, but getting to them in camera is fraught with great danger (to the camera),
1. Has anyone here actually successfully fixed this problem?
2. Has anyone unsuccessfully mangled their camera sufficiently to have picked up any helpful info?
3. Does anyone have an idea of how other parties do repairs?
4. Is capacitor replacement is involved in the process?
5. Does anyone have access to the camera schematics?

Not wanting to ask for too much ;-), I'll stop here.

Gerry

---------- Post added 04-30-16 at 02:36 PM ----------

I left out an important part: often, capacitors fail by a drop in their internal resistance; that is, their electrical leakage goes up. This will place an extra load on the power supply. If that's a battery, the drain can be large enough to drop its terminal value below the voltage necessary for camera operation, even for a battery in good condition. On the other hand, the output from an AC wall-wart supply is more robust and will maintain its output even if the current drain goes up. (If the drain is bad enough, the first symptom is likely to be overheating of something.)

Exactly the symptoms discussed here.

Gerry
Capacitor failure seems to be a logical suggestion but to be honest, I've never had the opportunity to see one that failed (usually failure comes from failed connectors, soldering points, burned out resistors). On the other hand, I've been repairing, or trying to, about 20 digital cameras, some of them actually as old as 12 years. More than a half of them ended in a bin, but I did buy them broken for peanuts.

To try to answer your questions.

1. Never done it
2. I did disassemble several cameras to the level where capacitor could be taken out. I have currently 3 k100d and one istD that are not working, so I could repeat the process one of these days to try and get the info of the actions needed to replace the capacitor in these models. I can surely say at the moment that it requires soldering and partial chassis disassembly if I remember well.
3. No idea
4. I've never heard that capacitor replacement was listed on the bill for the repairs. Does not mean it hasn't been done. Maybe someone knows of a case.
5. Camera schematics (actually repair manuals) exist for k10d and k200d, I could share these files if somebody is interested. I think that for latter models these documents have not been published to this date.
04-30-2016, 04:26 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by redmenace Quote
Hi all,

First post so far -- mainly lurking and researching. I've been researching new camera bodies to replace my old *ist DS2, but I figured I'd try a few shots with it before replacing it. However, it won't run off either fully charged NiMH (1.3-1.4v) or fresh Alkaline (1.55v).

Obviously I'm not looking to spend much (any) money fixing it, but I'm wondering if there's some easy "fix" like a secondary watch battery somewhere. Any tips would be greatly appreciated!


First thing I would try is cleaning the contacts in the battery compartment. Take a pencil and use the eraser on all of the contacts to clean off any corrosion. If that fails to work, then I would say something has failed inside the camera.


@ eyeball, The reason you have never heard about anybody replacing capacitors in a camera, AFAIK the capacitors are soldered to the main board in the camera and it is cheaper and easier to replace the board then a capacitor. I'm not saying it can't be done but you would need a person that has the knowledge to de-solder and solder main boards with out destroying other components.
04-30-2016, 05:10 PM   #7
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A search of the net will lead to many many folks with the same problem "Battery Depleted". I saw a few years back where a guy added a capacitor into the battery box (he got it from radio shack). Did a search but could not find it.
I owned a ist Ds that had the same problem, cleaned the terminals, charged the batteries, even bought new "Eneloop" batteries. No use, sent it to Pentax who said they carried no spares for the camera anymore. So told them to keep it and junk it. Even with new Lithium batteries I could only get 25 shots before it died. Last month my K200d developed the same problem, with only 2500 shots on it I would call this an un fixed problem that Pentax knew well about and did nothing.
My advice to you if looking for a cheaper camera due to finances would be to buy any Pentax camera that does not take "AA" batteries only. The k10D, KR, K20,K7 for example. I also own an ist D and K100D but now I am to afraid to even take them on test runs anymore. Do I have any regrets buying into Pentax? yes and no, the k10 is a very nice camera if that's all you can afford although price seem to be rising on old cameras.
04-30-2016, 10:23 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by bigdavephoto Quote
First thing I would try is cleaning the contacts in the battery compartment. Take a pencil and use the eraser on all of the contacts to clean off any corrosion. If that fails to work, then I would say something has failed inside the camera.


@ eyeball, The reason you have never heard about anybody replacing capacitors in a camera, AFAIK the capacitors are soldered to the main board in the camera and it is cheaper and easier to replace the board then a capacitor. I'm not saying it can't be done but you would need a person that has the knowledge to de-solder and solder main boards with out destroying other components.
Agree, but only 97% With wave soldering, and, worse yet, sub-millimeter surface-mounted components, the warning "no user-servicable parts" is pretty much redundant. I'd guess that all ceramic caps would fall into the microminiature category. However, even tiny electrolytics tend to be large, so I thought it might be worthwhile to raise the issue to see whether there are any in the first place, and whether they can be manipulated by human hands.

Your suggestion to clean contacts and check & recharge batteries is a good first step. Unfortunately, I've been there done that, to no avail. Camera operates from AC, but totally unresponsive to on/off with batteries, using various flavors of Alkaline & NiMH.

@zippythezip: My impression from blogs is that this type of istD failure is a lot more common than the K200 issue you're reporting. Is that consistent with what you know, and might Pentax have tried to improve things? Just wondering.

05-01-2016, 06:46 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by eyeball Quote
@zippythezip: My impression from blogs is that this type of istD failure is a lot more common than the K200 issue you're reporting. Is that consistent with what you know, and might Pentax have tried to improve things? Just wondering.
I also see many complaints from Kx owners and they claim to have to "worst battery" honours. I still search online for cures as I have owned 2 problem cameras.
05-01-2016, 09:00 AM   #10
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Thanks, all! Your responses have been immensely helpful. (I really appreciate the considerate tone and content of this place.) It sounds like mine is a chronic issue without a practical/easy fix, so the path forward seems pretty simple.

Since this body only has 488 snaps through it and has been good to me otherwise, I will probably rig up an external battery supply to feed through the AC socket while I ponder its successor. (Which will definitely have some sort of Li-Ion pack. Between digicams and bicycle lights, I'm through with juggling AA and AAA rechargeables!)
05-01-2016, 11:03 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by redmenace Quote
Thanks, all! Your responses have been immensely helpful. (I really appreciate the considerate tone and content of this place.) It sounds like mine is a chronic issue without a practical/easy fix, so the path forward seems pretty simple.

Since this body only has 488 snaps through it and has been good to me otherwise, I will probably rig up an external battery supply to feed through the AC socket while I ponder its successor. (Which will definitely have some sort of Li-Ion pack. Between digicams and bicycle lights, I'm through with juggling AA and AAA rechargeables!)
@redmenace: Er, if you're going to rig something up, and if you happen to have an ammeter handy, before you make the final connection, could you measure the actual current drawn from your pack? (Assuming you're not already doing this to calculate the pack's mah requirement). .

Mostly for curiosity. I'm thinking of doing this myself, and it would be nice to have a comparison. Thanks.
05-01-2016, 11:50 AM   #12
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Will do.

(I was just going to wire up one of these types to the correct plug type, so I guess I'm not completely done with AAs.)

05-01-2016, 01:09 PM   #13
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Nice idea with the battery pack.
Do you know anyone who has tried "powergenix NiZn" batteries? I have read a few places they are good for finicky devices that need more power.
A few users here with Pentax Kx and K100d were using them but the long term results are not known. They carry voltage closer to Alkaline and more than Nimh but I am no battery expert.
Buy POWERGENIX Rechargeable 4 x 1.6V 2500mWh AA NiZn Batteries + Fast Charger Set
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