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12-23-2008, 07:24 AM   #1
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Dark flash

I have the K10D for over a year but never used the built in flash to take indoor photographs (used my compact for that ).
Last night I put the K10D in green mode, Flash to auto and ....
the darkest indoor photographs ever. Luckily my friend had his compact camera to save the day.
Is something I do wrong or the camera needs service?

PS I found some old pictures I've forgoten I took with flash and seem very OK

12-23-2008, 07:49 AM   #2
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I guess we should look at the pictures to help figure out the problem. How dark of an area? How far away were the subjects you intended to take pictures of? The on board flash is not all that great but should work for your basic snaps. What are the flash settings?
12-23-2008, 08:49 AM   #3
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What lens were you shooting with? Generally people use their p&s at wideangle and generally p&s lenses are f/2.8 or faster at wide angle.

Also, on my k100d I've set the flash compensation to +1 for better results.
12-23-2008, 11:58 AM   #4
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I find the built in flash is acceptable if you turn on slow-synchro mode

12-24-2008, 04:34 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by vievetrick Quote
I guess we should look at the pictures to help figure out the problem. How dark of an area? How far away were the subjects you intended to take pictures of? The on board flash is not all that great but should work for your basic snaps. What are the flash settings?
Sorry! I'm on a tour now and I have not that camera with me. I'll post the photographs on my return home.
I used Green Mode and Auto flash with the kit lens 18-55mm. Subject in a room 6 by 6 meters.
Thank you all.
I'll be back in a week.
12-24-2008, 06:10 AM   #6
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The built-in flash works well in Av and P mode, I don't thin k 'green'mode is relaible for it. The slow-sync helps with the background.
12-24-2008, 06:20 AM   #7
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Green mode is as good as any for built in flash. I definitely shouldn't be the cause for dark flash. Until we see the "pitcherz " we can only speculate.
Just watch for white objects that get in the frame and are close to camera. The picture will probably be exposed so that they are light gray which makes anything further from the camera appear dark.
12-24-2008, 06:36 AM   #8
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I always had the same problem with P-TTL and the 18-55 kit lens. Part of why I don't like either one of them.

12-24-2008, 08:47 AM   #9
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Maybe your subject was too far. The kit lens has a maximum aperture of f/3.5 and if you zoomed to maximum, f/5.6. Your friend's p&s was probably using f/2.8 hence the better exposure. Next time try to shoot in M mode, at iso800, wide open and a shutter speed of about 1/20s.
12-24-2008, 08:54 PM   #10
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Normal

QuoteOriginally posted by gkopeliadis Quote
I have the K10D for over a year but never used the built in flash to take indoor photographs (used my compact for that ).
Last night I put the K10D in green mode, Flash to auto and ....
the darkest indoor photographs ever. Luckily my friend had his compact camera to save the day.
Is something I do wrong or the camera needs service?

PS I found some old pictures I've forgoten I took with flash and seem very OK
The P-TTL flash of Pentax tends to underexpose and flash exposure is inconsistent too. You are not alone and this is normal, I don't think your camera needs service.

More cases of others for you to know about:

RiceHigh's Pentax Blog: P-TTL Reliability
12-25-2008, 07:32 AM   #11
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Hi, I have had the same problem when I use the build in flash in Av mode. Did you too use the Av mode? The slowest shutter speed is set automatiquly to a "secure speed" which is depend on the focal length using. The secure speed= 1/(focal length * 1.5).
Hope this can help you.
12-25-2008, 08:15 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by RiceHigh Quote
The P-TTL flash of Pentax tends to underexpose and flash exposure is inconsistent too. You are not alone and this is normal, I don't think your camera needs service.
Eh. Over here in I-use-it-to-take-pictures land, it's not normally as bad as that. It doesn't necessarily mean the camera needs service, but I also don't think your "P-TTL is awful" meme applies here.
12-25-2008, 08:24 AM   #13
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Could be the PC board

Are the photos totally black, or do you see some of the image.

My istD had a built in flash problem, were every 5th or 6th shot was totally black, no image at all. I usually shoot flash in Av or M modes.

Pentax Canada replaced something in the flash, the main PC board and something else.

Worked like a charm after the fix.

I tend to get good results from the K10D pop up flash, in most cases.

Dave

Dave
12-25-2008, 08:49 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by gkopeliadis Quote
I have the K10D for over a year but never used the built in flash to take indoor photographs (used my compact for that ).
Last night I put the K10D in green mode, Flash to auto and ....
the darkest indoor photographs ever. Luckily my friend had his compact camera to save the day.
Is something I do wrong or the camera needs service?

PS I found some old pictures I've forgoten I took with flash and seem very OK
Not quite pertaining to your camera, I own k200d, just ordered a k20d too. First I was totally shocked with the "underexposure" I had indoors with top of the line flash A540FGZ. With multiple experiments I found that the camera exposes "true". i.e. the picture looks as dark as the scene is. This may be by design. I was used to seeing nice and bright pictures from my p&s. I learned to add flash exposure compensation, toggle between 0.3 and 0.7. When I adjust the EV with the jog dial, this actually controls the flash intensity, rather than shutter speed or apperture, as it would if the flash is not on. With this "compromise", I get perfect shots over 95% of the times. Could the camera have been cleverer and let use choose the spread of histogram, just short of blown highlights? You bet. Cheers.
12-25-2008, 09:43 AM   #15
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I have not had good results with the kit lens and the built in flash either. I don't use the flash very often so it hasn't concerned me much. If I set the ISO to 800, I get better results. Funny thing, when I use the flash with my 55mm Tak in manual it seems to overexpose some and I shoot everything at f16 or f11 even at lower ISO so the flash has enough power, its just the way the PTTL works. I can count on 1 hand the number of times I use a flash in a year most times its outdoors in daytime in partial shade and as a fill in it works very good.
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