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08-30-2007, 11:35 PM   #1
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k10d and 540 flash combo question

New here and this has probably been covered, but I can't seem to find exactly what I want to know. I am on the verge of buying a K10D and have been reading up. In fact I linked to a site late last night that had a review of the K10D and I think I linked from here but for the life of me I can't find it now. The review stated that the K10d does not have through the lens flash metering. Can this be true? What I am referring to is the metering of, and control of the flash output directly by the camera during the actual flash, not the camera metering the scene and setting the flash then allowing the flash to take over.

If I may, one more burning question. I have a number of lenses for the Ricoh XRP. I am aware of the guard and pin problem and how to remove the pin but would like to know what functions are available using these lenses. Example, can you set the aperture with the aperture ring or must you put the lens in "P" and set the aperture on the camera ect.

Sorry for so many questions at once.

Thanks for your help.

08-30-2007, 11:58 PM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by homemade Quote
New here and this has probably been covered, but I can't seem to find exactly what I want to know. I am on the verge of buying a K10D and have been reading up. In fact I linked to a site late last night that had a review of the K10D and I think I linked from here but for the life of me I can't find it now. The review stated that the K10d does not have through the lens flash metering. Can this be true? What I am referring to is the metering of, and control of the flash output directly by the camera during the actual flash, not the camera metering the scene and setting the flash then allowing the flash to take over.
I have the K10D and AF-540FGZ combo. It offers P-TTL (Pentax proprietary TTL), TTL, Automatic (camera meters then turns over control to the flash), and Manual modes.

I can't speak to your lens question.

Hope this helps,
Daryl
08-31-2007, 12:28 AM   #3
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There should be a sticky 'round here - the Ds was the last to have a TTL sensor on the camera. The, newer than a Ds, cameras, including the K10D only have a P-TTL sensor. The D and the Ds had both allowing the older flashes to be used. For Through The Lens Metering you need a P-TTL compatible flash. The P-TTL metering sensor on the the camera is supposed to be, more happy, than the 'traditional' TTL sensor in the digital era.
08-31-2007, 02:07 AM   #4
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The original Pentax through the lens flash system (TTL) used a second metering sensor mounted near the film/sensor plane. This allowed the system to meter and adjust the flash as the exposure is being made. The current system (P-TTL) uses the cameras regular meter and relies on a pre-flash to set the camera and flash exposure.

I think the confusion is the first 2 DSLRs form Pentax (ist*D and ist*DS) supported both systems. All the current Pentax DSLRs including the K10D, K100D, K110D, and also the ist*DL only support the newer P-TTL system.

Hope this helps

08-31-2007, 11:18 PM   #5
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This may be a little off topic, but since everyone is already talking about the 540, i minus well post my question here. Essentially, how is the battery life on the 540? What is the recommended battery type and rating (in mAh/volts)?
09-01-2007, 11:48 PM   #6
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You can download both the spec sheet and owners manual from the Pentax website. The AF-540FGZ flash uses four standard AA-size Alkaline (LR6), NiCad, Nickel hydroxide (NiMH), or Lithium (FR6) batteries. It can also use the Pentax TR Power Pack III external battery pack. Depending on the type and mAh capacity of batteries used, the flash unit is rated at between 200-350 full power discharges from a single set of internal batteries, with many more using less-than-full power (i.e. more typical auto or manual exposures). Full-power recycle times are 6 seconds using internal batteries and 4.5 seconds with the external battery pack, again with much shorter recycle times with less-than-full power (again more typical). I use four internal 2700mAh Lithium batteries.

stewart

Last edited by stewart_photo; 09-01-2007 at 11:54 PM.
09-24-2008, 10:34 AM   #7
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Tag to remind me to email stewart later tonight. I Want info on the setup
09-24-2008, 11:00 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by homemade Quote
If I may, one more burning question. I have a number of lenses for the Ricoh XRP. I am aware of the guard and pin problem and how to remove the pin but would like to know what functions are available using these lenses. Example, can you set the aperture with the aperture ring or must you put the lens in "P" and set the aperture on the camera ect.
You can have automatic exposure by putting the camera in Av (Aperture priority) mode and using the aperture ring. The camera will meter and set your exposure length accordingly. Also, with the magic green button, in manual mode where you control exposure, and aperture, you can just hit it to get a base exposure value and work from there.

With the camera set to Av and lens set to P you'll have control over the aperture through the camera's rear dial. I find it very convenient as at smaller apertures using the aperture ring, the viewfinder (on any camera) can get pretty dark. The power switch also functions as a depth of field preview switch as well and will show you the light meter's reading when used so you can always get an idea of what the image will look like when the lens is stopped down.

09-24-2008, 12:47 PM   #9
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I use a Quantum turbo battery pack with no problems. I probably get about 250 flashes from it and it recycles in about 1-2 secs. I use the TR3 cable, i think. Quantum doesn't list support for the 540 on it's site, but it does work just fine.

I also have the Pentax pack as a back up and it recycles in about 3-4 sec.
09-25-2008, 05:05 AM   #10
clm
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QuoteOriginally posted by homemade Quote
If I may, one more burning question. I have a number of lenses for the Ricoh XRP. Example, can you set the aperture with the aperture ring or must you put the lens in "P" and set the aperture on the camera ect.
"P" on Ricoh lenses does not work like "A" on Pentax lenses. Ricoh K-mount lenses(P or no P) function in the same way as Pentax-M lenses on Pentax cameras. That is, in Manual metering mode with Green button metering and you must use the aperture ring to set aperture value.
09-25-2008, 05:35 AM   #11
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Just as an update here to make sure all the relevant points are covered.

*istD and Ds have a TTL sensor and can use older TTL flashes. These two bodies can also make use of P-TTL flashes.

*istDL and later cameras (i.e. all KxxD cameras) can only use P-TTL capable flashes, or use flashes with "AUTO" settings (i.e. flashes that have their own sensors) or flashes in fully manual mode (setting power manually)

There is one significant advantage to TTL, which is why many people have kept their *istD and Ds bodies, This is that you can have correctly metered flash exposure with K mount and screw mount lenses. The nature of TTL flash, measuring reflected light off the sensor plane does not require the knowledge of the lens apature.

all bodies later than the DL need to have the apature information (maximum and minimum apature) from the lens, AND the lens set to A mode with the camera controlling apature, for the P-TTL flash to work, because it measures the preflash and calculates the necessary flash power based on the preflash measurement, maximum apature and set apature.

Now a note about the AF540 FGZ. This flash is designed by pentax to cross all technical boundries. It is TTL capable, P-TTL capable, and "AUTO" capable as it has its own light sensor. It will automatically select either TTL or P-TTL based upon the highest level of compatibility. You don't get an option. This means on the *istD with an A lens, you will always get P-TTL even though the body supports both TTL and P-TTL, with a K lens you get TTL. On any body you can select AUTO and use the flash's internal sensor.
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