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02-24-2010, 01:10 PM   #1
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Hair-trigger half-press on k-7 shutter release... weak spring?

Hey all, I'm a new owner of a shiny Pentax K-7, and so far I love it. Glad to have landed here in the Pentax camp... looking forward to exploring the world of Pentax glass!

I have a small foible with my K-7: the half-press of the shutter release has very little resistance... just barely resting my finger on the shutter release is sometimes sufficient to trigger auto focus behaviour. I shot for an hour in the rain last night, and this characteristic seemed to be somewhat exacerbated (water creating enough friction to inhibit the button return, perhaps). Once or twice in about 500 shots it's led to me involuntarily 'fluttering' the half-press, and re-autofocusing when I didn't intend to.

I've compared the resistance to a display model at the camera store across from my office, and it has slightly more resistance (albeit still quite sensitive); noticeable, but not enough to convince me that the half-press on my shutter release is defective, or has an abnormally weak spring. Could be down to sample variation.

I've also compared it to a few nikon dslrs which have a much more positive half-press button-detent than the k7, but that's comparing apples to oranges, I suppose. Probably not relevant.

I should also clarify that the full-press resistance is fine, and has a very positive click - no problems there. It's only the pre-release push (which triggers the af behaviour) which feels curiously delicate.

Can anyone else comment on their experience with this, and affirm/disaffirm that something's odd here?

Thanks in advance!!


02-24-2010, 01:29 PM   #2
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Yup, I was having trouble with that too... getting my focus points to change as I couldn't keep up gentle pressure on the shutter to hold focus. Might be just a matter of practise.

I'm planning to switch to back-button focussing (AF button). Shutter button half-press focussing can be disabled through customization options... might be a viable option.
02-24-2010, 02:33 PM   #3
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Original Poster
Hey k7er, thanks for the reply

Do you find that the button depresses to the half-press position with barely any pressure whatsoever? My big concern (beyond flaky af-hold) was the thought that if the button is this easily depressed, then with wear, the button might begin involuntarily triggering the af behaviour even when the camera was not being handled (ie. self-triggering the af behaviour). Not sure if this is a well-founded concern, or if this is just how the camera's supposed to feel. I had an slr (Minolta?) at one point that had an electrostatic switch in the shutter release, which triggered the metering function without any mechanical motion, and it's possible that this is the 'feel' that Pentax is going for with this control on the K7.

I've only had the camera for a few days, and haven't had the opportunity to fully grok the difference between the rear-af button and the half-press – I'll look into it. I'd be hesitant to alter my behaviour from how I shoot with other cameras, however - I'd like to keep my manner of shooting consistent if at all possible... reflexes are good!
02-24-2010, 02:47 PM   #4
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My K20D and K-7 reacts exactly the same, I guess thats the feel Pentax are going for.

02-24-2010, 02:53 PM   #5
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K200D too. K100D and *ist series were different, with more pressure required for half-press. After about a week I got used to it; after two weeks it felt really weird going back to the older cameras.
02-24-2010, 03:09 PM   #6
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That's great to know - definitely puts my mind at ease a bit. Thanks for the responses!

In the end, the finnicky release accidentally caused me to shoot a frame that I like a fair bit; here it is on flickr: 5/365 ? Foreground Bokeh! on Flickr - Photo Sharing! ...was shooting long exposures from behind one of the spotlights that's part of a light-based Olympic art installation on English Bay in Vancouver, and the af slipped and focused on the rim of the light instead of at infinity, right at the same time as the light swivelled further towards me than I had previously witnessed it swivel. Nothing special, but a nice, visible display of the aperture shape on the 18-55 kit lens.

If no-one's had any failures as a result of it (camera self-triggering the af, button stuck in the half-press position, etc.), then I'll hurry up and get back to my new-camera-honeymoon, and spend my energy shopping for SMC Primes... and a case... and a strap... and some cybersyncs... and...

Thanks again!

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