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09-04-2009, 06:56 AM   #1
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On buying used DSLRs

What is a good number for shutter actuations? I don't want to buy one if the danged thing stops firing two days after I get it.


Mods just noticed I was in the wrong forum for my question. Please move.

09-04-2009, 07:27 AM   #2
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<100,000 is a good start!

Really, there isn't one. You can never know when the shutter mechanism will fail.
As long as the camera works as when it was first used, it should be fine.
Bear in mind all dSLRs have a finite lifespan - much shorter than old mechanical film SLRs.
09-04-2009, 07:29 AM   #3
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My k100D has about 22,000 shutter counts....still going strong. Maybe I didn't use the camera as much as I should.
09-04-2009, 07:49 AM   #4
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Sorry to interrupt but on this topic, what happens when that lifespan is reached. Do you trash the camera?
I am used to lifespans as a Front Projection fan. :-)

09-04-2009, 07:55 AM   #5
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Ash, thanks.

raider, good to hear as the model you have is the one I was/am considering purchasing, and used at that.

shaolin, that was going to be my next question. Though I think someone said if the shutter quits you have to replace the camera, in another thread I started about my going digital.

But then someone else came in and said that ugh, canon can replace the shutter, so he/she thought Pentax could as well. I don't know. We'll have to wait the experts answer.
09-04-2009, 08:13 AM   #6
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Both my DSLRs were bought used. One had less than 1000 actuations, one had less than 5000.

That would suggest that used DSLRs are for sale a) because the person didn't like that camera and are moving on, or b) have so much money they buy the latest model when it comes out.

As to shutter life, only the pro-class cameras are rated around 100,000. Consumer shutters are probably half that. But I've actually never heard of a shutter failure, even in an entry-level DSLR.
09-04-2009, 08:30 AM   #7
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Honestly, how many times have you heard of a shutter failing?

I'd be more concerned about the owner and if they smoke or if they treated it poorly. Look for strong reputations on the forum and I mean feedback not just well known names.
09-04-2009, 10:46 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by shaolin95 Quote
Sorry to interrupt but on this topic, what happens when that lifespan is reached. Do you trash the camera?
I am used to lifespans as a Front Projection fan. :-)
By the time that most shutters die, the camera will either be long obsolete or discontinued.

Pros and advanced tyros will easily come up against the rated life of the shutter (I just hit 20k, and I've had mine for 20 months), but the vast majority of users will never, ever take 50-100k pictures in their lifetime, let alone that of the camera.

Even if the shutter dies in a couple years, the replacement version of the body will be on the market, for the same money or less.

09-04-2009, 02:15 PM   #9
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Actually, it appears the shutter button is more of a concern than the actual shutter. According to some current threads, it appears the shutter switch itself is potentially only good for around 10,000 actuations, and a replacement switch is not obtainable through Pentax.
09-04-2009, 02:24 PM   #10
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Indeed lots of other things can go wrong with a dSLR other than shutter mechanism failure.
Why would you need to throw away a working camera just because it's exceeded 100,000 actuations? It would only be testament to the quality of the camera that it should last that long...
09-04-2009, 02:53 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by tomwil Quote
Actually, it appears the shutter button is more of a concern than the actual shutter. According to some current threads, it appears the shutter switch itself is potentially only good for around 10,000 actuations, and a replacement switch is not obtainable through Pentax.
That's impossible, you'd have so many owners past 10K it's not funny. These boards would be on fire.
09-06-2009, 09:46 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by Alfisti Quote
That's impossible, you'd have so many owners past 10K it's not funny. These boards would be on fire.
Yep not true! There are thousands of K20s and K10 with more the 10,000 clicks. The top cover includes the shutter button when you order it! Its still available and an easy job for a tech.
09-06-2009, 12:36 PM   #13
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The shutter isn't usually the thing that goes on a dSLR. Sure, it can, but something that is so full of electronics has numerous different things that can give out. Unfortunately, when you buy a used electronics item, you know there is a possibility that different things can give out. I think age and overall care have more to do with how long it will last. If it has been dropped multiple times (how would you know?) it might have things that give out.
09-06-2009, 12:36 PM   #14
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Not sure where on the web it is, but when I was researching DSLR's, there was a list where people posted there actuations when the camera stopped. This was about two years ago and I saw many cameras above the 50k.
09-06-2009, 12:53 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by tomwil Quote
Actually, it appears the shutter button is more of a concern than the actual shutter. According to some current threads, it appears the shutter switch itself is potentially only good for around 10,000 actuations, and a replacement switch is not obtainable through Pentax.
I sold my K10D to a friend when it had around 3,000 actuations, now he put it close to 20,000. There is still no sign of problem with the shutter switch.
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