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07-25-2016, 06:21 AM   #1
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Fried flash on K5

Hi everyone,

I have a k5 which I bought second hand almost a year ago. Last week I was taking some photos and using live view and flash a lot. It was also one of the hottest days of the year so far, around 32-35c (90-odd fahrenheit). I had to change the battery and immediately after I changed it, I realised the camera was not powered off. The next photo I took was with the in built flash, and there was a spark and slight electrical burnt smell. I don't know if it's just the bulb in the flash that has blown (does this happen much?) or if there is some more serious electrical problem.
I stopped using flash and everything else seemed fine, then not long after that, a message appeared on the camera saying Live view would be shut down as the camera was overheating. This is the first and only time I've ever seem the thermometer symbol or got any message about the temperature. At that point, I turned it off and left it for a while. Ever since, the camera seems to work fine, I haven't encountered any problems. I haven't tried to use the flash and I don't suppose that would be a good idea.
I wondered if getting an external flash and using that instead (I don't like using the built in flash anyway) would be a good solution, but there might be a risk of damaging the camera and/or the flash if there is an electrical problem.
Any ideas on how to take it from here?

07-25-2016, 07:20 AM   #2
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Using an external flash is better any day. It prevents the unwanted vignetting. No harm in using the external flash as its only exchanges the trigger voltage and nothing more.
07-25-2016, 07:21 AM   #3
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If you smelled something burning, something is shorted or blown in the flash circuit. It could be the flash bulb itself or the charging capacitor. Does the fresnel lens on the front of the flash look blackened? That would point to the bulb. Where did the spark come from?

The sensor overheating was probably unrelated, as the k5 easily overheats in live view or video mode if used for extended periods, since the sensor is continuously active, and it can't be heatsinked due to the floating stabilizer design.
07-25-2016, 07:25 AM   #4

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If the built in flash does not flash anymore, it could be the bulb that expired. It may or may not be an actual electrical malfunction other than that. As you said, you might be taking a chance by trying a shoe mount flash, but other than having it diagnosed by a repair person, trying the shoe mount flash may be the only way to actually know if it would work or not.

07-26-2016, 04:45 AM   #5
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Original Poster
Thank you all for your replies.

dcshooter, I think the spark came from the side of the bulb enclosure, although it happened quickly and I was looking more at the subject, so I'm not too sure. I can't see any blackening around the flash.
I'm off to pick up a f2 lens now, so I guess I'll do without the flash for a while!
Do you think it would be dangerous to try a photo with the pop-up flash to see what happens?


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