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05-23-2009, 04:07 PM   #1
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Urgent!! New K20D behaving very badly!

Hi all,

After a lot of convincing, I helped a friend buy a new K20D from last week.

With JPEG/Auto mode, after two or three shots the pictures started coming up all black or had pink splotches. We thought it might be firmware (shipped with 1.01), updated it to 1.03 (no problems), re-formatted the Kingston 16GB SDHC in the camera (newly purchased from NewEgg)and he left for a business trip, out of country and took the camera. Camera is not being used with battery grip, or third-party batteries, or third-party lenses (kit lens, 18-55 II).

He called me today and let me know that the camera has been locking up on him and also taking black pictures or ones with pink splotches.

Has anyone else experienced problems like this? What should we do? I'm afraid if it gets exchanged with BuyDig the next camera they ship out does the same thing. But, if it gets sent in for repair at Pentax, that might take a few weeks to resolve. The biggest complicating factor is my friend will be back in the US for three days before leaving for a vacation trip, out of country -- the one he actually purchased the camera for.

Your help and information is very much appreciated.

Thanks in advance,

05-23-2009, 04:20 PM   #2
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The very first thing I would do is a buy a new card from a reputable store as there are many examples of similar issues that are card related, not camera.

Most of these 'bad' cards appear to have been bougt online.

Try that first.

05-23-2009, 04:22 PM   #3
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Post some pictures up. That might help in deciphering whats going on
05-23-2009, 04:32 PM   #4
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Spank it and make it go to it's room.

05-23-2009, 04:51 PM   #5
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Swap it for the new K-7
05-23-2009, 05:32 PM   #6
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Sounds like the problem a few (including me) have had with the k20. Discussed here:

Sent mine back to Pentax. They replaced the circuit board and/or sensor(?). Haven't had a freeze up yet. Several other reported the same fix
05-23-2009, 05:35 PM   #7
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I'd agree that he get a new card from a store and test it. If that fails to solve the problem, send it back immediately and get another so he can take it on his trip.
05-23-2009, 07:35 PM   #8
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Send it back... my first K20d froze (the freeze usually happened randomly while it tried to access the memoru card.

My second K20d front focused to the point of being unusable...

My third one was a keeper.

I'd say Pentax has some serious quality control issues.


05-23-2009, 08:20 PM   #9
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I had a similar problem with the lock ups and black frames. I sent an email to Pentax and they seemed to recognize the problem and told me to send it in for repair. I should get it back in 2 weeks. Of course I tried several different memory cards (which all worked fine in my K100DS) and batteries but still had the problem. I would of course check these things just in case to possibly save time, trouble, and postage. However I would send it in for warranty repair if I were in his shoes.
05-24-2009, 01:05 PM   #10
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Hey guys,

A quick follow-up:

Can someone PM me a contact at Pentax that might be able to escalate service on the camera? The issue is my friend will be in the US for *three days* when he gets back from his business trip before heading out on vacation. The vacation is a once in a lifetime trip for which he specifically purchased the K20D. My friend lives in US (California).

For the curious, here is an example image the K20D took:

This is with a friend's DA 50-200, image resized just before upload, JPG straight from camera, no other processing. Last note, everyone is right to suggest he tries another memory card which he will do, but the original Kingston card(made in Japan) was purchased from NewEgg, a reputable company that does not sell knock-offs or returns.

Thanks guys
- c00lslr
05-25-2009, 11:44 PM   #11
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Not that this is of much help, but this is why I try to purchase from local retailers. It might be a bit more expensive, but if you get stuck with a DOA item it is easier to exchange it, especially if you have been buying other items from them and have developed a relationship with the retailer.
05-26-2009, 12:43 AM   #12
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This doesn't sound right.
I'd get the camera back to the vendor for a replacement/repair.
05-26-2009, 02:43 PM   #13
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I agree with you. The K20D was hard to locate locally, I checked several stores. Most had Canon/Nikon, what Pentax they had was usually demo stock or questionably "new in box" but opened.

Pentax phone support was sympathetic, but they weren't able to propose a solution that was "foolproof". I had hoped for a cross-ship, but they can't do that. I think that's disappointing, on behalf of the company, not the support personell. Cross-shipments are standard practice in the "IT" industry; for a $700+ item, purchased retail, I think they can do better.

- c00lslr
05-26-2009, 05:16 PM   #14
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Unfortunately I don't know if there's anything that can be done to expedite pentax's repair service, I'm patiently awaiting the return of my own K20D. I suppose your friend can always get a second K20D to use on the trip and keep the original as a back up after it is returned from repairs
05-26-2009, 07:17 PM   #15
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what is their return policy? Return it, buy another (Pentax or other) elsewhere? Can he send it back from wherever he is now (i.e. before he returns home) to speed up the delivery of a replacement?

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