Pentax K1000, light meter dont work; what should I do?
Question: Hi, I bought a Pentax K1000 on ebay. I received the camera four days ago, and noticed the light meter wasn't working. I went to a local camera store and bought a new battery. Installed the battery and the light meter still dosent work. Also as shown in the users manual, I set the asa to 100 and the exposure to B to check the battery, and there is no movement of the needle on the light meter for that either. Today I bought a roll of film, tomorrow I will shoot pictures and get them developed just to see the results from the camera. The camera is for a Photography class, so its a perfect camera for all manual settings. It is an Asahi Pentax K1000, with SMC Pentax-M 1:2 50mm lens, I bought it for $44.00. The body is in great condition all metal. Should I keep the camera, and buy a hand held light meter? Or should I send the camera back? the seller offered a 7 day money back guarantee if not happy with purchase. Thank You.
Best Answers: Pentax K1000, light meter dont work; what should I do?
First of all congrats on having the balls to learn on a manual camera. Believe me in the long run you will be miles ahead of those that use the auto everything and once you learn the rules you can move onto an easier camera. The meter being broken could be a blessing in desguise. Here is what I would do. I'd buy a mid-range meter like a minolta (go ahead and get the one with the flash meter for later) and use that. But before each meter reading guess at what you think the exposure is then compare it to the reading on the meter. It won't take long before the meter will be used to just ot double check your ability and you will be way ahead of the game. It's nice when you come upon a shot you need quick but don't have time to get out the meter. You can look at the situation, ball-park it and more likely than not you will be right on or very close. Instint is a great thing. Develop some.
When you turn it on, the LED's in the viewfinder should momentarily flash. If no LED's ever light up you have a battery connection problem. Make sure the batteries are inserted in the right direction and use a flashlight to make sure the contact inside the camera is not corroded by leaking batteries. If the LED is only showing the bottom red one, you have a photo sensor problem. Use a bright light (not the sun) to see if the meter LED's "move". Dial through the f/stop settings and the shutter speed settings. Change the ASA/ISO setting. Sometimes, the contacts get a little dirty and moving them around fixes the problem. Good luck Update to your reply: The light sensors are behind the focusing screen which is on the roof of the camera. I would STRONGLY recommend you not get into this area uless you are a) a highly skilled camera technician, b) not able to find a camera repair shop to check out your camera and are willing to lose your camera all together if you mess up. I would rather look for another used MX or use this one with a separate light meter than risk destryoing it by taking it apart and not knowing what I am doing. Check the other possibilities first. Here's the service manual if you are daring enough: http://www.robertstech.com/files/mx_sm.p...
The K-1000 is a fine camera, and should be an excellent one for you to learn on. Before writing off the meter, I'd suggest taking a pencil eraser and cleaning off the contacts both on the battery and inside the battery compartment. Even a small amount of corrosion can completely stop the meter. Also, you mention that you bought a battery from a camera store. I'm guessing that they probably sold you a Wein cell. If that's the case, be sure you've pulled the tab off and waited about a minute before installing it. Incidentally, should you get this camera working, you're fine using silver oxide or alkaline. The metering circuit in the K-1000(and the older Spotmatic) can compensate for differences in voltage from the standard Mercury battery.
First issue, mount adapter for k-mount lenses to Nikon bodies exist but fall into two categories both not so good. The first are just manual adapter rings that fit between lens and body, they work but are too thick to allow the lens to focus to infinity, the second type have and optical lens element, permitting infinity focus but image quality ranges from mediocre to downright awful. And for metering you would need a D200, D300, D700 or any of the pro series D1-2-3. And that would only be stop down. Pick up a nice used 50/1.8 AF for under a hundred bucks and sell that 50/1.2 Pentax (you might get enough to buy a new SB-700 for your Nikon).
This Site Might Help You. RE: Pentax K1000, light meter dont work; what should I do? Hi, I bought a Pentax K1000 on ebay. I received the camera four days ago, and noticed the light meter wasn't working. I went to a local camera store and bought a new battery. Installed the battery and the light meter still dosent work. Also as shown in the users manual, I set the asa to...
"Improper lighting" may be the cause of the light meter which is in need of recalibration. It could also be the fact that there is not enough lighting, the film isn't adequate for the situation, or the camera wasn't properly set. "Unfocused images" sounds like a you-problem. Is the shutter speed fast enough? Are you having trouble with the image in the viewfinder? I mean, with manual focus cameras WYSIWYG. If it was an AF camera we could blame it on the camera and lens for back- or front-focusing. "Don't like the picture"... well that's not the camera's fault ;-) Read some books and online articles on composition, techinque, colors, etc. The K1000 was a cheap but solid camera. The ammount of money you'll get depends on the lenses that'll go with it. Usually the only people buying are money-deprived students and you'll rarely get enough cash to cover the purchase of a DSLR. That said, you have a classic in your hands. I'd keep it around if you decide to upgrade. Just remember that switching to digital won't significantly increase the quality of your images (the "just because I don't like the picture" part) unless the K1000 is the reason for all of your sorrows.
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