Question about Pentax Optio S5n Digital Camera

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Dropped camera The camera, approximately 3 years old, was dropped from a sitting position. The zoom lense is extended and will not close. When the on/off button is pressed the small green light to the right on top of the view screen flashes and that is all. I wonder, is it worth trying to get it repaired?

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  • kelly r. Oct 11, 2008

    i have the same problem ,my camera pentax optio s7 was dropped and when i swith it on sounds a noidse and it swith it off by itself,what can i do?

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Dropped Pentax Optio S5n Digital Camera

My Answer:

I'm afraid the "very big" drop you speak of was more of a camera ended life - as related to all digital cameras. No matter how much that 3-year old Pentax cost when new.

Not all digital cameras are created equal, and if you are an active sports person, or something close to it whereas your camera is subject to or exposed to this kind of rough treatment then you might want to consider doing several things from now on.

Unfortunately it sounds like you dislodged the imagining converting pixel matrix chip and/or the related optical components that convert the optical picture information into digital information that is processed to the memory card for storage.

You may have even possibly dislodged some PC connectors (printed circuit board connectors) inside the camera. Not to mention pulsed servo motor drive components as well.

Each camera is different as to how many individual circuit boards they have inside. Could be 3-4-5 or more. Each is interfaced by a paper thin flat interface type cable and it's possible that particular board cable could be damaged as well. Hard to say. Very very complex inside!

I've had a few destroyed digital cameras apart myself (that people gave me to try and fix) - just to see how they were put together, as I knew they were toast right off the bat in less then 5 mins after looking at them. If it wasn't bad batteries leaking inside and destroying the many smaller circuit boards inside, then it was dislodged and broken parts inside from being dropped.

In any case - each digital camera I had apart WAS NOT worth repairing if taken into an authorized repair dealer or even the main factory repair outlet. Esp if it is/was a SONY!! Sony anything is really not worth the repair charges they want today. Totally ridiculous as they charge you roughly $35-50 today just to even look at whatever is broken of theirs. Then comes the actual repair cost on top of that. I won't buy anything of theirs anymore, as they burned me twice before years ago - and twice was enough....

Not so with Olympus and other digital camera makers! That is why all my cameras today are Olympus because of the GREAT factory warranty or out of warranty service I received past to present. They are the best in my books and I have NO TIES AT ALL to them in nay matter or form!

One thing I should mention here regarding digital cameras in general, as with all 35mm film cameras as well is this.

With digital cameras that cost less then $200 (esp those under $100), and those that are say 3 to 5 years old already - if they break internally for whatever reason (ie: batts leaking - worn out drive motors - dropped camera - water damage - etc) they are considered THROW AWAY CAMERAS and NOT WORTH FIXING. Plain and simple - all sentimental attachment aside btw. Always remove and keep the Memory Cards before throwing out any damaged "beyond repair" camera though. The cards can always (possibly?) be reused on your next digital camera purchase.

With any new camera purchase over $200 it's always an added decision whether to buy the 2 or 3 year EXTENDED WARRANTY - as related to the added cost. I know I would have, and I have done so on my $400+ higher ended Olympus 35mm film camera not only because Olympus builds the best and are renown for their lens QUALITY worldwide, but because I wanted the extra PEACE OF MIND knowing an act of God or Mother Nature could occur at any time. It just made sense to me at that time!

As an example - I actually had 2 normal use problems with that 35mm film camera that were totally covered by that Xtended warranty and one involved an R&R of the film drive motor assy due to whatever lubrication related reason it decided to bind up and act sticky as opposed to normal smooth lens barrel operation, which btw I know would have been very expensive had it not been covered for FREE!

SO - for those reasons above (and a few others) you really only have 2 choices here - not knowing what you paid for your Pentax digital camera brand new, but knowing it's over 3 years old and only you know how much use you have on it as well.

In either case scenario above - your Pentax camera would have to be taken in to a Pentax Fuji factory repair center if you choose to take that route. If it were me I would first call the factory direct and see if they offer a Blanket Repair Cost option - worst case scenario (dropped camera). Then take that quoted option and base it against the actual cost of that camera when you bought it brand new.

If it's even very near, or way over then say 50% of the cost you first paid for that now broken camera to begin with - I would pass on even a factory repair and just buy another brand new digital camera. Whether the same exact model or a newer upgraded model - the latter option being better from a compatible software viewpoint!

I would also ask the Pentax Factory Service Center if they had some kind of an upgrade option should you decide to take it into their facility and then they themselves find out it's really unrepairable cost wise? Sometimes they'll offer you this - sometimes they don't - doesn't hurt to ask!

If they want to charge you anything just to look at it - pass on that unless they are going to credit you that towards a final repair quote! In either case GET a quote before any work is started on it. SONY refuses to do this because they are purely MONEY DRIVEN!! Worst CS Dept I have ever been to in my life.

If your camera truly is a total loss then count your losses - lost - at this point, and go out and just buy another good quality camera of your choice. Prices have dropped a lot in the past 4 years. Still buy another camera that uses your same original camera memory cards if you can (whatever they are), or else upgrade to an XD memory card camera if you have to buy all new storage media cards. XD cards are surely the best I feel - as far as durability & size goes - no doubt about that part!

If you do decide to go with another new camera this time around - buy a good quality PADDED case for your camera, and get a good quality " WIDE NECK STRAP" not only for the camera's safety, but also for support and comfort when actually using the camera. The price of that better quality NECK STRAP pays for itself and prevents your camera from hitting the deck like it did this time around. It's PRICELESS in my book and the best INVESTMENT anyone could ever make!

Those ridiculous flimsy wrist straps are a big NO NO if you really value any camera of yours. I treat my Olympus C-740 like it was my baby! Literally! Anything you wouldn't do with a real life human baby - then you wouldn't do with your camera as well. Goes hand in hand!!

My SAMSONITE brand padded nylon camera case that I found at either TARGET or else FRYS Electronic store cost me less then $12, and it works just GREAT! Best one I ever found! Holds all my XD memory cards - up to (6) total - in the original factory plastic snap cases they come in - all in a separate leather zip up case - plus 2 full sets (8 total) of Ni-MH rechargeable batts.

Even though my $300 C-740 camera only cost me ~$155 with tax - after a 50% store rebate at Office Depot in June of 2005 - I cherish it dearly, as I waited a long time for the price to drop on it.

Just can't be too careful with digital cameras these days.

Hope this repair/fix feedback has helped you to make a solid decision on the next step, as that choice will be yours alone. Sorry - I can't help you further.

Best regards,

Frank

Posted on Aug 29, 2008

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