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04-16-2010, 12:44 PM   #1
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Flash fits: Will it work???

Hi all,
I just got back from my sisters house. After discussing cameras, she gave me this old K1000 & accessories. There are 2 zoom lenses & External flash. Today I am curious about the external flash. it is a Vivitar Auto 215. That's all the info i have. It uses 2 AA batteries. Interesting, since it was on an older Pentax it fits my K-x!!! I noticed though, only 1 center contact on the flash surface area. my K-x has a center contact surrounded by 3 smaller contacts.
I am not knowledgeable about this. I want to try it, but don't want to damage my K-x.
What do you think??? What should I do???

04-16-2010, 12:51 PM   #2
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Danger, danger!

It will fit because Pentax did not change the hotshoe mount geometry.

HOWEVER, this flash is likely to use a voltage value taht is too high for your camera. I know the vivitar auto 2000 mustn't be used, I assume this one should not either.

There are workarounds for this, but they are likely to be expensive, so you might be better off buying a used flash that will work (like a Pentax AF200 or AF280T).
04-16-2010, 12:57 PM   #3
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some people think they wreck your hot shoe, but others think that it wont.

better to be safe than sorry though.

you could use it wirelessly and be safe if you get the right adapters.
04-16-2010, 01:16 PM   #4
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Check it out here: Photo Strobe Trigger Voltages

Be careful with using any old (pre-digital) flash with your K-x - it may fry the electrical circuitry.

04-17-2010, 07:29 AM   #5
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This: Wein | Safe-Sync Hot Shoe to Hot Shoe (SSHSHS) | W990560 | B&H is a little pricy, but it should let you use any flash safely.
04-17-2010, 12:42 PM   #6
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YIKES!!! I am real glad I asked your advice before trying. I would be a read sad puppy right now otherwise. I checked out those trigger voltages. That flash is listed and recommended NO DON'T USE!!!
Boy, it was so tempting to try. Sure glad I did not.
Thanks for the info guys. It is very very much appreciated.
I will probably buy a proper one at a later time.
04-20-2010, 01:22 PM   #7
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All flashes would fit in any hot shoe mount since this has standard dimensions.
In the old days, only the mount and the center contact was all that is needed to fire the flash, that was why any flash could be interchanged with whatever camera brand. Nowadays, manufacturers have added all those small additional contacts for their own special dedicated flashes and triggering systems.
It is only now that you can't interchange flashes from different camera brands although there are still third party manufacturers that make flashes compatible for each camera brand maker.
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