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06-19-2016, 05:23 PM   #1
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Questions/Help regarding Pentax Super A/SuperProgram (film camera)

Hello Pentaxians,

Context:
I recently had a chance to purchase Pentax bundled items (from succession) that contained 4 lenses & filters, a flash and a camera Super A/SuperProgram (film body) with ALL original documentation about items.

Since I already own a K1000 (that I haven't used for years), I was purchasing the bundle for the lenses and the flash unit. The tryout revealed all lenses & flash were in good working condition and confirmed well being taken care of after dusting them.

The most complicated thing to verify was the camera (the camera was a bonus to me, since I purchase the kit for the 4 lenses & flash). I knew up front that metering would probably not work due to dead batteries inside. So I read/referred to the camera docs, purchased new batteries and insert them in.

Documentation says that (tiny) top digital display should indicate some information on it. First time batteries inserted, I saw some kind of movement on the top display, like a reboot process. That seemed promising... as SuperProgram camera was more advanced than my K1000 .

Questions:
Question #1: Is there a on/off switch (like DSLRs) to not consume batteries? (I saw reviews stating about huge batteries consumption)

Question #2: Which battery type (model & number) are you using for your camera? The equivalent ones (based on SR44 that was in) I used are Energizer 357, but does not seems to do any good.
* Battery compartment does not contain any signs of battery leakage.

Question #3: When I put camera on Auto or M(anual) mode, uses the 2 up/down top buttons (near shutter), I was expecting to see information moving in the 2 small display (speed up/down), through the viewfinder. Is this normal that noting shows? I only see 2 blank squares (Remember that I used new batteries)

Question #4: Am I missing a step (or other thing to do) in order to make this camera rolling?

Question #5: Can I use the camera, otherwise than viewing the electronic display (speed info or other info)? Is there a way to determine if the exposure is correct?

Question #6: Any idea of what to do next to see if camera (electronic) is working?
(Shutter and other moving parts seems to be fine)

Overall, my main concern is: Will I be able to use that (bonus) gem?
The purchase of this kit makes me think to give another chance to films.
I have not use film camera since, I would say, at least 15 years, and started digital in 2007 with K100D, now using K-5ii and K-01.

Any comments are welcome. Thanks in advance...
Do not hesitate to suggest me things to try, as it seems dead, as we speak...


Michel

06-19-2016, 05:45 PM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by mhoule418 Quote
Question #1: Is there a on/off switch (like DSLRs) to not consume batteries? (I saw reviews stating about huge batteries consumption)
There's a lock setting on the mode dial. This disables the meter.

QuoteOriginally posted by mhoule418 Quote
Question #2: Which battery type (model & number) are you using for your camera? The equivalent ones (based on SR44 that was in) I used are Energizer 357, but does not seems to do any good.
https://www.amazon.com/Energizer-LR44-Button-Battery-Replaces/dp/B005SDWP3O/...ds=S76+battery

Make sure they're inserted correctly.

QuoteOriginally posted by mhoule418 Quote
Question #3: When I put camera on Auto or M(anual) mode, uses the 2 up/down top buttons (near shutter), I was expecting to see information moving in the 2 small display (speed up/down), through the viewfinder. Is this normal that noting shows? I only see 2 blank squares (Remember that I used new batteries)
This means the camera is not powered on.

QuoteOriginally posted by mhoule418 Quote
Question #5: Can I use the camera, otherwise than viewing the electronic display (speed info or other info)? Is there a way to determine if the exposure is correct?
I believe the camera can shoot at 1/125s without batteries if you select that via the mode dial.

QuoteOriginally posted by mhoule418 Quote
Question #6: Any idea of what to do next to see if camera (electronic) is working?
Assuming that you've verified that you have the right batteries, that they are inserted correctly and not upside down, and that they are not dry, you could send the camera to Eric (see https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/189-repairs-warranty-service/316284-penta...e-listing.html ). He'll be able to tell you if it needs a repair, and offer you a quote.

If a repair ends up being necessary, it'll probably be cheaper to get a replacement camera, but keeping yours for parts wouldn't be a bad idea.

Adam
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06-19-2016, 06:10 PM   #3
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You need to turn the meter on with a half-press of the shutter button before anything will show in the displays.
06-19-2016, 06:38 PM   #4
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Unlike older ME based cameras, the super program/program plus/superA/ProgramA do not fire without batteries.

06-19-2016, 08:36 PM   #5
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Here's the manual for it:

http://www.cameramanuals.org/pentax_pdf/pentax_super_program.pdf
06-20-2016, 04:16 AM   #6
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Thank you all for your replies!
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