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Old Sep 4, 2009, 11:42 PM   #1
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Default K10D testing question

Been awhile since I posted but lately I just cannot seem to get good, clear pictures out of my K10D.

Always thought it was caused by my poor photography skills and pressure at work (no time to shoot) but when a fellow pentax user suggested it may be the camera I started to wonder. That said. How would you go about testing a K10D camera if you were going to buy a used one.

What would you do and what type of pictures would you take and at what settings. What would a "problem" camera show.

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Old Sep 5, 2009, 12:25 AM   #2
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My early model K10 (I had one of the first or second shipment cameras) had focus problems. It would focus fine with some lenses, but not with others. The problem didn't always show up with focus charts, and wasn't consistent - drove me nuts. When you say "good, clear" and "K10" that would be my first thought. Try taking a picture with lots of depth to it and use as large an aperture as you can so you have as small a DOF as possible. Take some pictures and see if the camera focuses right. Try manually focusing too.

Is there a difference between lenses - one worse than another? If so, the problem could be the lens, not the camera. Is one side fuzzier than the other (usually a lens problem).

Post some samples, that will help give us an idea of what's going on.
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Old Sep 5, 2009, 12:45 PM   #3
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Hi Bowenp,

I have an early production K10, and it has focusing issues with some lenses. IIRC, Pentax apparently came up with an improved focusing sensor later in the production cycle. If your body is still under warranty (yeah, I know, it's an "old" model, but I personally witnessed a NOS K10 sale just a few months ago), It would be worth sending it to Pentax for a free fix. In my case, the warranty had already expired, and my body focuses well with my most used lenses, so I haven't sent in as the out of warranty fix was (IIRC) about $150 (which still might be worthwhile)

There are DIY fixes available, depending on the firmware version that you have installed. I'm writing this from memory, so I might have some details wrong. . . you might have to do some research to get the full info. . .
If you have firmware 1.1, then there's a debug menu available that was meant only for the tech guys at Pentax Service. There's an AF focus point adjustment (like the K20 and K-7 have, but it's only a global adjustment that will effect all lenses). Access to the debug menu was changed with the next firmware update, and I think with this model, it was not possible to revert to previous versions.
If you have firmware 1.3, there's also a Russian firmware hack that allows access to the debug menu and AF focus point adjustment. If you're interested in these, you might do a search at DPR or Pentaxforums.com. where there were numerous threads where this was discussed extensively. I'd try doing a few searches first, since this effort is appreciated by most regular members. . . If you don't come up with anything, then post a question, recounting your failed search efforts -- there are probably members who have the threads bookmarked and can easily point you in the right direction.

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Old Sep 9, 2009, 11:26 PM   #4
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Thanks for the feedback. Work has been so crazy I have had no time to follow-up. Will try to post soon but have come to believe it is the photographer not the camera which is the problem
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