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Old Sep 7, 2009, 4:53 PM   #1
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Default Sensor Failure?

I think the sensor went bad on my K20 today. I was out doing macro and, when I checked the photos I was taking, the last twenty or so consisted of mostly black images with pink or purple horizontal lines of varying thickness. On one you could see a thin horizontal strip of what I was taking the photo of. Initially I assumed the card had failed but switching cards gave the same results. Bringing the camera in and letting it cool down also did not help; changing lenses also did nothing.

These images are actually being recorded to the card so I can post some samples later (I am not at home at the moment). Has anyone experienced anything similar? Also, I would appreciate suggestions for anything else to try. If nothing works, I will probably order another K20d. The K7 looks great but the K20 is doing everything I need, well, except work at the moment.

Thanks,
Tim
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Old Sep 7, 2009, 5:57 PM   #2
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Try taking the battery out and letting the camera sit for a while before putting it back in (or another if you have one, fully charged) and see if the camera's internal computer resets.
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Old Sep 7, 2009, 6:23 PM   #3
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i thought the card also..
Penolta has good idea.
if that doesn't work and you can get to the menu page then reset the cam to default values..
try another lens also might help.. maybe thats the prob..
if none of that works then go mirror up to clean. fill up the body with 50% alcohol/water and fill it up with enough to cover the sensor and scrub with a nail file..
good luck,
roy
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Old Sep 7, 2009, 6:24 PM   #4
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also try different iso values..
and different lpeg values.
try RAW also
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Old Sep 7, 2009, 6:41 PM   #5
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My first thought was card also. Since you already tried that, penolta's idea of removing the battery for a while is also worth a try. Otherwise, I'm clueless. This is the first K20 I've heard about failing like this (it could be other electronic elements besides the sensor - the in-camera card reader/writer comes to mind). I don't suppose the camera is still under warranty? Even if not, I think it would still be worth sending to Pentax if the battery and resetting to default doesn't make a difference. It might be a simple relatively inexpensive problem.
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Old Sep 7, 2009, 8:40 PM   #6
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Thanks for the suggestions Roy, Harriet, and Penolta. The problem is the same with different lenses, different jpeg and iso settings, and in different modes. I have the battery pulled right now and I will see how it behaves when I get home from work tomorrow. It is out of warranty, unfortunately, but I do intend to see what Pentax would charge me to repair it. I don't want to be without a camera for the next month, though, so at the current K-20d prices I will probably pick up another body if this one does not come back from the dead tomorrow. Worst case, I will have a backup body and I already have the battery grip and extra batteries for the K20d. Oh, below is an example of the images I am getting. It looks like the colors were off in the last "good" shot and then every shot since has been something along these lines:

Tim
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Old Sep 7, 2009, 8:42 PM   #7
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Hmm, not used to this new forum software yet. Trying the attachment again.
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Old Sep 7, 2009, 9:47 PM   #8
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Hey Tim,
I have no idea whats going on with your cam but, you remember the problems I was having with the Samsung last year. I would use it for a while and it'd work for about a week or two, then I'd send it back. they'd check it out and send it back saying nothing wrong. I'd pop a battery in and sure enough, it worked just fine... for about a week or two, then we'd go through the same routine again. well, on the last time in started acting up was on a Friday evening , so I had to wait till Monday to ship it back. I just took the battery and mem card out to get it ready to ship and just put it on the desk for a couple days. well on a whim... I put the battery and card back in and lo and behold, it worked fine! so I made the deduction that the heat had something to do with it.

just something to keep in mind...
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Old Sep 8, 2009, 9:16 PM   #9
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Thanks for all the input ya'll. This morning I thought I had it going, I put in the battery, put in a card, formatted, and took a photo with no problems. I took half a dozen around the house and then took it outside this afternoon to see if it was a one time glitch or a recurring problem. Within another dozen shots problems started reappearing. I found by putting it in M mode and grossly overexposing I could get much of the photo to appear but the center area was browned out.

I am bummed but I also recognize this camera has given great service and electronic things do fail sooner or later, this one just happened to be sooner I guess. I have another K20d on order from Adorama, with the three day shipping it just may be here in time for a trip to the zoo this weekend. The old one will go back to Pentax, hopefully it can be repaired cheaply. If not, maybe they will give me half off a K7!

Edit: I keep getting an upload failed message when I try to attach the image? File size is 174kb, has the limit changed?

Last edited by NonEntity1; Sep 8, 2009 at 9:21 PM.
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Old Sep 8, 2009, 9:36 PM   #10
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I have read on another board that Pentax is extending the 3 year warranty on new bodies - however, I have forgotten the ending date on this. So if you do spring for a new body, check to see if the 3 year extended warranty offer is still available.
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