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04-29-2019, 09:45 AM   #1
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I think that my DA*300/4 is dying ! Please tell me what you think - see details.

Hi everyone.

I have been using my DA*300/4 for many years (seven to nine years now I think) and I have never encountered a problem with it ... ever.

This morning I was out doing some birds of prey birding and all of a sudden, this happened:

Pressing the AF (top front - I don't use the back AF button) - lens mounted on my K3 as usual - : I can "hear" the SDM AF kicking in but within a few seconds the obvious screw drive AF kicks in !! I sure could hear this buzzing typical of the screw drive AF.
This goes on back and forth between the SDM vs. screw drive a few times then it stops and goes back to SDM only.

Another thing that happened while the screw drive AF was active, is the "continous AF" while the camera is set to single AF only.

So I turned the camera off, started it again : same thing but only once.
Then: turned the camera OFF, removed the battery - reinserted the battery, turned camera on: all is fine for a few shots but it did happened once more.

Even when the SDM AF was "supposedly" working fine, about 50% of my shots were blurred. Even those shots of stationary subjects.

Note that the lens switch was on AF; I had verified this.

So ... big questions:
1. Is this a sure sign that my DA*300/4 is dying?
2. Why would the screw drive kick in?
3. Has the camera having anything to do with this?

Any help/advice/opinion would be tremendously welcomed.

Thanks !

04-29-2019, 09:51 AM   #2
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When SDM dies focus accuracy during failure can get worse. However it shouldn't start using screw drive. The only legs that sometimes fights screw drive and sdm is a 60-250 after attempted conversion (lens isn't compatible with conversion).

I'd suspect a deeper issue with either the camera body or the lens electronics.

Can you try on an alternate body?
04-29-2019, 09:59 AM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by UncleVanya Quote
When SDM dies focus accuracy during failure can get worse. However it shouldn't start using screw drive. The only legs that sometimes fights screw drive and sdm is a 60-250 after attempted conversion (lens isn't compatible with conversion).

I'd suspect a deeper issue with either the camera body or the lens electronics.

Can you try on an alternate body?
Thanks !
Yes, I can try it with my old K5.

I wonder: I did not remove and reattach the lens on the camera body. Would that be a possible contact problem?
04-29-2019, 10:05 AM   #4
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maybe the focus overdrive is in a bad position. Had that once with my DA*50-135. Take a little srewdriver and turn the screwdrive on the lens a little. Hope it helps.

04-29-2019, 10:16 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by pid Quote
maybe the focus overdrive is in a bad position. Had that once with my DA*50-135. Take a little srewdriver and turn the screwdrive on the lens a little. Hope it helps.
I have no idea what you are talking about!
04-29-2019, 10:51 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by jpzk Quote
I have no idea what you are talking about!
sorry for bad english. Just try turning the screwdrive on the lens mount a couple of times. See if it helps.
04-29-2019, 10:52 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by jpzk Quote
I have no idea what you are talking about!
Maybe he meant "quick shift" system?

I will suggest to clean to SDM connectors a little bit. or maybe take it off, bent the metal pice a little to make better connection?
04-29-2019, 11:29 AM - 1 Like   #8
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PID meant this
Take a screwdriver and turn the lens screw drive all the way to the left and back again
It helped me, but no guarantee that this will always help

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04-29-2019, 11:45 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by pid Quote
sorry for bad english. Just try turning the screwdrive on the lens mount a couple of times. See if it helps.
QuoteOriginally posted by grahame Quote
Maybe he meant "quick shift" system?

I will suggest to clean to SDM connectors a little bit. or maybe take it off, bent the metal pice a little to make better connection?
Well, I don't know where that screw drive is on the lens.
Sorry about my lack of expertise in that domain.
04-29-2019, 11:56 AM   #10
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if you have a grip connected ... check that this is off
04-29-2019, 12:06 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by grahame Quote
Maybe he meant "quick shift" system?

I will suggest to clean to SDM connectors a little bit. or maybe take it off, bent the metal pice a little to make better connection?
That shouldn't make any difference. Sdm failed levees will refuse to use screwdrive even if you remove sdm tabs. This is more confused.
04-30-2019, 12:35 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by jpzk Quote
Well, I don't know where that screw drive is on the lens.
Sorry about my lack of expertise in that domain.
... look at the pictures of "Crooski" the post before yours ...
and yes I meant quickshihft not Focus overdrive. Sometimes the mechanic is in bad position and the screwdriver trick helps.
... and make sure the sdm contacts are clean and fine.
05-01-2019, 06:04 PM   #13
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Thanks for all of the replies, folks !

Well, I did pretty much that was suggested here:
- Clean the contacts
- The screwdriver trick
- Tried with a K5 (no problem here)
- Battery in/out
- Check AF switch on the lens

and then .... ... check the grip ! It was "ON" ... AND .... the battery indicator showed that it was one "bar" lower.

So ... recharged the batteries (camera and grip), made sure the switch on the grip was in the OFF position.

The camera/lens behaved as it should (the next day). So far, it did not behaved weirdly as per initial post.

So I'm guessing that it was either because the grip was ON (but why?) or that the battery(ies) running low caused the problem ... or a mix of both?

Then again, I still am very confused with the fact that the SDM and screw-drive AF's kicked in together. Strange.

Anyway, I will be having another birding session tomorrow and I'll put the combo through the paces and see what happens.
Hopefully, the problem has been solved.



---------- Post added 05-01-19 at 09:05 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by hernandomdio Quote
if you have a grip connected ... check that this is off
See my last post !
05-05-2019, 06:20 AM   #14
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Are you using the 1.4 converter? I ask about the 1.4 converter because when mine started to die, I got that buzzing sound you describe, though it never tried to go into screw drive. I took the converter off, the buzzing stopped happening, and it died a slow quiet death.

When the SDM in my DA*300 started to die, it either would not focus at all, or it would start to focus, but stop before it ever locked focus. Sometimes, I would have to spin the focus ring from lock to lock and try again and it would start working again. Eventually, it just completely quit.
05-12-2019, 05:37 PM - 1 Like   #15
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Update:
After a couple of very short sessions with firing the K3 + DA*300/4, all has been working correctly.
I make sure that the batteries are fully charged and that the grip is OFF, unless I need to have it ON.
We shall see when I put the combo through its paces in more difficult situations requiring rapid bursts in "less than ideal" lighting conditions.

---------- Post added 05-12-19 at 08:38 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by r0ckstarr Quote
Are you using the 1.4 converter? I ask about the 1.4 converter because when mine started to die, I got that buzzing sound you describe, though it never tried to go into screw drive. I took the converter off, the buzzing stopped happening, and it died a slow quiet death.

When the SDM in my DA*300 started to die, it either would not focus at all, or it would start to focus, but stop before it ever locked focus. Sometimes, I would have to spin the focus ring from lock to lock and try again and it would start working again. Eventually, it just completely quit.
Nope!
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