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06-19-2016, 01:23 PM   #1
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Shutter speed setting

Long story short: I was fairly proficient with Pentax film cameras years ago. Then along came point and shoots and I got lazy. I now have a Pentax K30, stuck with Pentax so that I could use my vintage lenses.

I get the camera out once in a while and try to take some photos but they are all failures and I put the camera away. Now I am determined to learn how to use it!

But all of my photos are too dark. I need to figure out how to set my shutter speed, for one thing. I know about the rear e-dial but that gives three sets of numbers and I don't know what they mean! For example, on my camera now the three sets of numbers are 50 in the middle, 45 on the left, and 55 on the right. The lens on the camera is a 50mm prime.

So, can someone please tell me how to set the shutter speed (I can set the ISO)? Direct me to a youtube video, website--anything that will show me in detail, step by step, the functions of the k30? I have been searching for days and can't find what it is I need to know. Thanks so much for any help!!

06-19-2016, 01:31 PM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by IrishGirl Quote
Long story short: I was fairly proficient with Pentax film cameras years ago. Then along came point and shoots and I got lazy. I now have a Pentax K30, stuck with Pentax so that I could use my vintage lenses.

I get the camera out once in a while and try to take some photos but they are all failures and I put the camera away. Now I am determined to learn how to use it!

But all of my photos are too dark. I need to figure out how to set my shutter speed, for one thing. I know about the rear e-dial but that gives three sets of numbers and I don't know what they mean! For example, on my camera now the three sets of numbers are 50 in the middle, 45 on the left, and 55 on the right. The lens on the camera is a 50mm prime.

So, can someone please tell me how to set the shutter speed (I can set the ISO)? Direct me to a youtube video, website--anything that will show me in detail, step by step, the functions of the k30? I have been searching for days and can't find what it is I need to know. Thanks so much for any help!!
Here's a basic guide to exposure:
The Fundamentals of Exposure - Introduction - In-Depth Articles

To set the shutter speed, you'll want to set the camera's mode dial to Tv, then use the rear e-dial* to adjust the shutter speed. The shutter speed will be underlined in the viewfinder and shown on the status screen on the main LCD (and in live view, see the article above).

If you're in P mode, you can also manually override the camera's chosen shutter speed at any time by turning the front e-dial*. To return to the camera's recommendation, it's enough to press the green button.

*If you go into the main menu and select e-dial programming, you can see (and change) which e-dial controls what setting for every mode. If someone else has used your camera, it's possible that your dials will control different things, so go ahead and double-check. Here's the location of the setting:



Av refers to aperture value, and Tv refers to time value (shutter speed), so that's what you'll want to see in P and Tv modes.

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06-19-2016, 01:37 PM   #3
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The numbers you see are focal lengths. Selecting the correct focal length will help with shake reduction. Did you get a manual/CD Rom with the camera
06-19-2016, 02:16 PM   #4
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Yep, what spinno said. The old lenses don't communicate their focal length to the camera, so it's asking you to tell it what you've got on the front. Once you do that (control wheel and OK button), it's back to normal again.

If your photos are always dark regardless of what shutter speed you have, it's possible the camera's aperture control block is failing, leaving you stuck at f/22 - always fully closed down and always underexposed. Get into manual mode and take a series of pictures at one fixed shutter speed and various apertures. If they all show the same dark answer, your camera will need to go in for repair.

06-19-2016, 02:40 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
Here's a basic guide to exposure:
The Fundamentals of Exposure - Introduction - In-Depth Articles

To set the shutter speed, you'll want to set the camera's mode dial to Tv, then use the rear e-dial* to adjust the shutter speed. The shutter speed will be underlined in the viewfinder and shown on the status screen on the main LCD (and in live view, see the article above).

If you're in P mode, you can also manually override the camera's chosen shutter speed at any time by turning the front e-dial*. To return to the camera's recommendation, it's enough to press the green button.

*If you go into the main menu and select e-dial programming, you can see (and change) which e-dial controls what setting for every mode. If someone else has used your camera, it's possible that your dials will control different things, so go ahead and double-check. Here's the location of the setting:



Av refers to aperture value, and Tv refers to time value (shutter speed), so that's what you'll want to see in P and Tv modes.
Thank you, I did what you said with Tv and got some good shots! I have a good idea of aperture, etc (and I own Bryan Peterson's Understanding Exposure, 3rd edition) but it is my camera I am trying to learn! When I shot film, Fox Photo even used some of my photos in their shops. I was told the K30 was an easy camera to learn but it is not for me but if I keep at it, it will get better. I just need to learn what the various functions are so I am sure I will be back asking a lot of questions!

Thanks to everyone who replied!
06-19-2016, 03:03 PM   #6
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Let us know if you need more help, I love my K-30!
06-19-2016, 06:03 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by IrishGirl Quote
I was told the K30 was an easy camera to learn but it is not for me but if I keep at it, it will get better. I just need to learn what the various functions are so I am sure I will be back asking a lot of questions!

I think the Shake Reduction makes it more forgiving than other brands, Irishgirl.


When you shot film, did you do it in M mode?


That's available on the K-30 too if it helps your transition to digital.
06-19-2016, 06:28 PM   #8
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By vintage lenses to you mean manual focus? Are you using manual mode and the green button to set the shutter speed?

Review using MF lenses on Pentax DSLRs

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/54-pentax-lens-articles/110657-how-use-me...k-x-k-7-a.html
https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/53-pentax-dslr-camera-articles/100260-man...ic-lenses.html

06-20-2016, 03:13 AM   #9
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It may seem a long and boring activity, but try reading the manual.
06-20-2016, 07:42 AM   #10
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This page from the K-30 review here on the forum might be helpful:

Pentax K-30 Review - Recommended Settings | PentaxForums.com Reviews
06-20-2016, 12:56 PM   #11
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Moving from film to digital is a lot more complicated than you might think, even for the easiest to use dSLR's. You are using a camera that is also a computer with a lot of electronics. It's worth reading the manual to understand what the camera can do, even if you don't use it, especially for the settings. Once you do, if you were used to M-mode, then it is highly recommended to just use it, and get familiar with the "green" button. It's a blessing when using M mode.
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