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09-26-2009, 01:19 PM   #1
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istD battery compartment problem

My istD shows strange behaviour:

Using the A/C adaptor, the camera works perfect!

But if I try to use batteries of whatever type (AA, CRV etc., all new & tested for voltage and power with two different test devices), the camera claims "empty battery". Turning on and off the main power switch repeatedly sometimes solves the problem and the correct battery status will be recognized. Sometimes pressing the shutter release button halfway helps. Sometimes nothing helps.

Obviously, there's a problem between main switch and battery status control/battery compartment.

Is this unheard of? Is repair possible?

Gloomy,

Vranx

09-26-2009, 09:53 PM   #2
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Try cleaning the battery contacts on the camera.Using the eraser on the end of a pencil to get at the contacts that are hard to reach.
09-26-2009, 10:24 PM   #3
Ash
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The camera seems to be operating correctly.
Something's not quite right between the battery and its contacts within the camera.
As mentioned, give the contacts a clean, and ensure they're fresh, fully recharged (if they're rechargeable) and potent (not cheap quality).
Failing this, it may actually be the contacts not quite transferring the charge from the batteries to the camera circuitry itself.
09-27-2009, 11:43 AM   #4
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Thanks for your quick replies!

The battery contacts are clean and shiny, like new. The body has less than 3000 actuations and batteries never remained inside during periods of not being in use. The problem seems to be that checking and repairing this via a Pentax service is much more expensive than a spare part like the compartment door, that may even not be available at all...

So, nobody ever had a similar hardware problem?

09-27-2009, 12:06 PM   #5
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The *istD is extremely battery voltage sensitive and will do all sorts of wonky things if one battery in the set isn't quite right.
I ended up using CR-3V batteries in mine, which made it reliable. NiMH batteries just didn't cut it for me. Too much maintenance and after a year or so of use I could no longer get a set of batteries to match well enough to make the camera operate reliably.
09-29-2009, 08:47 PM   #6
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Hmm, mine works fine with Li Ion CRV3s. It definately sounds like a battery issue since the camera work fine with external power. I would purchase a set of CRV3s Li Ion batteries (non rechargeable) and try them on the camera. If that works fine then Wheatfield was right on the money.
09-29-2009, 09:07 PM   #7
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I only use Energizer Lithium batteries. They are expensive, but they work well and I get more that 1000 shots out of them in my *istD.
09-29-2009, 09:47 PM   #8
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Another possibility perhaps is the battery contacts being depressed a little too far down and intermittently not making contact with the battery when bumped or moved in a certain direction...

10-01-2009, 04:47 AM   #9
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Yesterday, I've tried a new set of the EVOIA heavy duty AA cells - and, thanks God, the camera worked. But these batteries (as well as the C3V cells) cost a fortune and if the voltage drops below a certain degree, you can equip your bedtable alarm clock (or whatsoever) with really precious batteries...
Still, the main power switsch seems to need a spirited turn to wake up the camera. If I do it carefully, the circuits are closed (otherwise the BATTERY LOW symbol would not blink), but power supply would not be sufficient.

Magic, but obviously too expensive or fussy to repair. Is the battery grip a solution?
07-31-2013, 04:18 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Vranx Quote
My istD shows strange behaviour:

Using the A/C adaptor, the camera works perfect!

But if I try to use batteries of whatever type (AA, CRV etc., all new & tested for voltage and power with two different test devices), the camera claims "empty battery". Turning on and off the main power switch repeatedly sometimes solves the problem and the correct battery status will be recognized. Sometimes pressing the shutter release button halfway helps. Sometimes nothing helps.

Obviously, there's a problem between main switch and battery status control/battery compartment.

Is this unheard of? Is repair possible?

Gloomy,

Vranx
I have read pages and pages of complaints about the battery warning empty indicator on the istD. It seems to be a major issue on many threads in this forum. I tried everything suggested in the posts to no avail. Just when I was about to consign the camera to the trash, I set the top left mode dial to flash before switching on with the same batteries previously showing empty. The camera sprang back into life.!
Wonder how many gave up before me?
Chris Bowden
07-31-2013, 04:31 PM   #11
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(Old Thread but..)
I have repaired a couple of ist dl and ist ds and I see the ist d might be of a similar design in the area of the switch.
The switch is in 2 parts, the upper part is a set of fingers rotated by the switch knob, and the lower part is the copper contacts on the flex plate.
Both are pulled together by a screw in the battery compartment.
If I had that problem the first thing I would do us loosen the screw in the battery compartment top, directly under the offending switch knob. Don't remove it.
Wriggle the switch knob a bit then re-tighten the screw fully.
It is a long shot but may work.
Pulling the top off these cameras is a major drama.
08-01-2013, 12:25 PM   #12
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The *istD was my main camera for quite some time. The low battery indication was an off again, on again problem especially with Ni-Mh or in high heat or extensive flash-use situations (rare for me). The flash often is a culprit.

I found that NiMh batteries rated over 2000 aH tended to perform particularly badly. I suspect better pre-charged (hybrid) batteries - especially those rated to hold maximum voltage longer (Eneloops among others) - will work better than other rechargeables.
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