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Old Dec 23, 2008, 10:25 PM   #1
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Hello,

I have been taking more and more pictures at night with my K20D and also with my K2000 and I have a wish for a feature I would like to see Pentax add to the camera.

I would like Pentax to make the buttons on the camera body as well as the mode dial back lit so that you can see them at night. I know this would use some battery power but if they used something like LED lights to do this it shouldn't be a big hit on the battery power. A button on the side or something that was lit while the camera was on would enable you to turn the lights on and off (except for the light switch which would as I said always be on as long as the camera was powered on.)

If you have never used you camera in low light/no light then you probably won't appropriate how useful this would be. If you ever do shoot low light/no light you will quickly understand what this would be a killer feature.

Robert
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Old Dec 24, 2008, 7:39 AM   #2
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ive only ever done night shooting once and i also found this to be a problem, maybe it had a lot to do with me being new to the camera, but it was most anoying. i ended up using the light on my mobile phone to see the buttons. when i got home i put a small torch in my camera bag just in case


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Old Dec 24, 2008, 7:50 AM   #3
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Yep, I carry a small flashlight on my key chain. Not convenient when your hands are full, buit better than nothing.

Would be a cool feature.

Patty
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Old Dec 24, 2008, 9:13 AM   #4
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The only drawback I can see about having the switch to turn the lights on and off always lit is that it does add a light to your dark scene, and could potentially cause problems with your picture, especially if you are taking really long exposures. I think if they were to do this, the button should be in a place no other button is and then unlit. If you want to use it you'd need to learn where it is exactly before you go into the dark, then you can find it by feel.

For the low light stuff I've done, I've found that pushing the Ev button, which turns on the light of the top screen, has been sufficient for my needs. That's been enough light for me to find the right controls (but that assumes that I know where they should be to begin with).
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Old Dec 24, 2008, 10:52 AM   #5
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Yeah.

I've come across that a couple of times.

The K100D does have some indicators in the view finder though that change when you change mode, but there are some caveats . . .

1) There is no "Auto Pict" mode. It just uses whatever mode the camera has decided is the proper mode.
2) I get confused when switching between the M, Av modes because they seem so similar.

I'm thinking that the "Scene" or "Bulb" [bu] modes are the most distinct and that if I memorize the order of the modes, I can just turn the dials to one of these modes (while looking through the view finder) and then turn it to the mode I want from there. (Remembering how many clicks it is)

I can understand the K20D not having the view finder indicators, does the K2000 not have the view finder indicators. I hope the K200D has these indicators, but probably no big loss if they got rid of them. I'll just carry a small flash light around with me, which I'll probably do anyway.

Take care,
Glen





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Old Dec 24, 2008, 10:58 AM   #6
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Morning Robert, I have the same problem as you and have solved it with a small pen LED light (that has both red and white LEDs). At night in particular, I use the red as the white destroys your night vision. This has worked out extremely well, so much so - that I now keep the small pen light in my camera backpack with everything else.

This is a well known effect in the military, especially within the Navy. Any white light near an external portal (hatch, bridge, etc.) is illuminated with red, and all the lighting on flight decks are red also, so as to preserve night vision. Also, 20 minutes prior to going out on deck, the ready areas are lit in red so that your eyes pre-adjust. The Captain on my old ship made it a habit to wear red sun glasses when ever he had to come off the bridge to do something "inside", so that he could re-acquire his night sight as soon as possible when returning to the bridge.

I have the K100 which is much more menu intensive than the K20 with the additional wheels and controls. So the effect of walking through the menu items - at night, in particular with the function button (ISO settings, multiple exposure, remote shutter delay, etc.) is one of the items I frequently have to use. Even the light from the screen is at times not sufficient to find the function key, then the arrow buttons, the OK button and then the function button to exit. This is especially true when I have the camera mounted on a tripod, and the orientation is fixed and the screen is difficult to see and the buttons can be in "odd" positions. The little pen LED flash light is perfect for the job.

Hope that helps....
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Old Dec 24, 2008, 11:06 AM   #7
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Well, I am not expecting search light like output here. Just a low dim glow like near the bottom of dimness you can set for the instrument panel in your car. I don't want not blaring bright lights either. Just enough light that if you look closely you can see the button function.

Robert
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Old Dec 24, 2008, 11:08 AM   #8
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It isn't the indicators that a problem. It is the buttons, the mode dial shows what mode you just turned to on the back LCD screen (though I would still like it lit as well), but it is all of the other buttons. The K20D has way more buttons than the K2000. The K2000 does have a lot of scene modes which you access from the display on the back LCD.

BTW the K2000 was a total shock, it is actually a darn nice little camera for the price.

Robert
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Old Dec 25, 2008, 4:37 PM   #9
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Hey Robert,
I thought that was a good suggestion first time I read your post but, last night I went out for my first time night shoot... I couldn't agree with you more! I have a little 2 cell AA pen light I keep in my bag and it works well but, what a nuisance!
:angry:
GW:bye:
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Old Dec 25, 2008, 5:57 PM   #10
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that is a goodtip, thank you very much,ill have to keep my eyes open for a small red led flashlight
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