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Old Jul 26, 2009, 9:46 PM   #1
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Default Pentax KM K2000 Problems


Still have my trusty *ist DS, but I wanted more Megapixels and combined RAW and JPEG at the same time.

So I purchased a KM/K2000.

Tried it out for the first time last night at my nieces pre-ball.

I was taking photos using the internal flash, my pentax TTL external is not compatible with the P-TTL of the KM/K2000. (Found this out the hard way)

I started on the Autopixt Mode.

Every photo came out blurred or unsharp, as well most had yellow colour casts. Taken under tungsten light against a mid green curtain background.

I noticed that the auto ISO was on. with the limit set from 100-800 (default)

However the shutter speed started to come down to 1/5 and 1/8 of a second. (ISO was always at the 800) This would be so difficult to take sharp photos, due to camera shake. Yes I had the image stabilisation on. You would think that in autopixt mode it would make the lowest shutter speed 1/60, so that you could point and shoot within limits.

Has anyone else had that problem. Maybe I have a setting incorrect. Using P. Mode the shutter speed very rarely came down below 1/60, which broght back the sharpness, without a tripod.

My question is for random inside night shots using the internal flash, what is the best setting to use to at least be able to take hand held shots.

My camera vendor suggested I change the colour balance from bright to nature. Havent tried this as yet. Has anyone else had this problem.

Beginning to think that I should either brush up on my skills or get a refund.
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Old Jul 26, 2009, 11:35 PM   #2
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I'm sorry I can not help, I don't know about the Auto Picture mode, but hopefully someone else here can. At least this post will keep you at the top.


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Old Jul 27, 2009, 7:48 AM   #3
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Is the camera new or used? If used, why not try setting back to the defaults and see if that helps any.

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Old Jul 27, 2009, 1:16 PM   #4
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Hi surfseen,

First of all, welcome to the forum!

It sounds like your flash might not be firing. Even the internal flash should overcome the ambient light, so the yellowish color cast should not happen. I've yet to see any flash exposures that used shutter speeds as slow as 1/5 or 1/8 of a second. Usually, flash aided exposures are in the 1/60-1/180 sec range, and blur from either camera shake or subject motion should not occur since the flash duration is so short.

Did you see the preflash in the viewfinder immediately before it blacked out? Some people don't seem to see this, but it's very evident to me. Try shooting some junk shots with the flash, holding the camera away from your eye. If the flash isn't firing, check the setting in the Fn menu. You'll probably want the flash set to Auto or Manual. Auto should pop the flash up automatically when the light is dim enough to need the flash, and Manual requires that you manually pop the flash up when you desire to use it. I don't have a K2000, so I can't be sure of this -- but I can pretty much assume that it's not much different from the DS and K100DS that I do have.

I personally don't have much use for the Auto Pict Mode on any of the cameras that I have that have it. The theory is that the camera senses the kind of scene to be captured, and chooses the appropriate Auto Mode (portrait, sports, landscape, etc) to shoot in. If I want the camera to do all of the work, I prefer P mode, or at least manual selection of one of the Auto Modes.

If your TTL flash is a Pentax branded unit, it's possible that it might work with your K2000. Most of the Pentax TTL flashes also had an "Auto" mode where you set the shutter speed under the max synch speed (1/180), the ISO and aperture are set according to the values indicated on the back of the flash unit dependent on the subject distance and power level the flash is set to. Keep subject distances within the range given, and it should give you pretty good flash exposures. I believe all but the AF 500 FTZ have this capability. I own an AF 280 T and an AF 200 T that both work in this mode.

Anyway, I'd check whatever settings, then change anything that might disable the flash, or reset all settings to default, then try shooting in a dim room to make sure the flash is firing. If it still doesn't, even after resetting everything to the default, then I'd return the camera for one that works correctly.

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Old Jul 27, 2009, 6:24 PM   #5
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Thanks for that.

I am at work at the moment but I will try it when I get home. But I do recall that when I used the external flash the auto flash mode disappeared.

As the TTL (I now know that TTL is not compatible with the KM) would discharge completely, I would take it off.

Then I noticed that the autoflash setting appeared again, but the setting remained at "Flash on always".

Even with my DS, I never had much luck with the autofucus with the "flash on always setting", when on autopict mode.

Perhaps that has something to do with it. The flash was either not firing or somehow not registering as being an option in Autopict Mode.

I will let you know how I go.

Thanks again. I was starting to think Auto PIct mode was a bit if a farce.
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Old Jul 28, 2009, 7:35 AM   #6
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Surfseen - I use a K-m, and have never even tried using the auto mode. Try using either Av or Sv, and set your ISO manually as appropriate for the setting. Also note that the flash does not pop up automatically, but you have to press the little button to the left of the viewfinder to make it come up. Not sure if this is true in auto mode...
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Old Jul 28, 2009, 6:15 PM   #7
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Tested the camera again.

It would appear that autupixt mode does not work well in low light, inside, (the flash pops up automatically). The shutter speed comes down too low. I wonder if a firmware update, would limit this to 1/60. I would suggest it to pentax but cant really find the contact in the website to make the suggestion. I saw a review in DP review and he also said autopixt does not work well in low light.

I think I got the colour cast using the external flash (not compatible) and when I took the next photo the flash may not have recharged, and the picture was taken without the flash. Then when I took off the flash, the shutter speed came down too low for the shots to be sharp. Really the first time I used the camera. Didn't help I suppose that we were having a few drinks. Should have helped to keep the camera steady though LOL.

It was a mad rush that night, everyone getting ready and moving about, hard to keep track of what you did for each shot.

Have to remember the adage " A bad workman always blames his tools"
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