Sunday, July 20, 2008

Pentax Forbade Use of CR-V3 Batteries in the K200D

Lately, I found that there have been some K200D users reported on the Internet that CR-V3 batteries could not be used in the K200D. So, I started a new thread at the PentaxForums to confirm about the case and seek more additional information:-

Thanks to the PentaxForums user chanthon, who is a K200D owner, who kindly posted a series of photos which showing the physical layout (restriction) of the K200D battery compartment as well as what will happen when CR-V3 batteries are inserted (brand and type regardless), see directly this and this posts of his for the useful photos.

So, now that Pentax have totally forbidden the use of CR-V3 batteries in the K200D, both disposable Lithium and rechargeable Li-ion types as well (and of course), the battery choices of the K200D are now limited only to the Energizer AA Lithiums (at around 1.7V when new and 1.4V when old) and Ni-MH type (with typical nominal voltage of 1.25V when fully charged and will drop to below 1V eventually or under sudden larger current drain).

Still, since the K200D was marketed a few months ago, there have been various users reported problems with their Ni-MH batteries for the battery problems they found and the short battery life issues, as usual (but of course)! In fact, those new users would not expect it could be so problematic just with the batteries. I would not list those user reports here furthermore as those could be easily found in the Internet and I have been so tired to list those and hate to do so as well - the issue has been there for nearly five years now, since the first Pentax DSLR market, the *ist D - a 2003 model.

With the super stubbornness of Pentax in keeping a "AA battery" DSLR whilst at the same time they do not find an effective solution to a real problem but just make the case worse and worse, their products could never succeed but in contrast, this would just only give new buyers poor impressions about Pentax for those who are really bugged.

I just wish to ask again (and again) that: What actually is the point to keep using old battery technology which is outdated and problematic, uncontrollable for Pentax for what the type (and hence characteristic) of the batteries the users use. Even though now the K200D users are forced to use Ni-MH batteries as the only usable rechargeable type in their cameras, the battery issue indeed persists. I can't see there is any real advantage (not even one) for the Ni-MH batteries in a DSLR but all are just disadvantages: heavy and bulky, sensitive to cold weather, not enough voltage and power, less total energy deliverable, variable discharge characteristics and quick self-discharge (Eneloop or alike would be better but they are *still* Ni-MHs and are just not as good as Lithium-ions). Whilst other camera manufacturers have abandoned the use of AA batteries for so many years and no one else ever used this so-outdated battery technology and solution in any DSLR ever made except Pentax ones, why Pentax needed to insist, on such a unwise and indeed stupid choice? Now that even CR-V3 cannot be used in the K200D, it just makes the situation worst than ever (non there is no sign of any for their power supply circuit in their DSLRs has been improved to give stabler power supply! - which is rather difficult indeed owing to the limitations of the old technology, as I've stated above).

If they just opted to use a Li-ion battery solution in the K200D, I am sure the camera could be made smaller, with a more stable and reliable battery performance, and a higher overall camera performance as well. Afterall, they stupid choice and unexplainable stubbornness just failed their product which could be more competitive if they could just do it to remove at least one of their long-lasting and infamous issues of their DSLRs.

Read Also: When 1100mAh Li-ion RCR-V3s Outperform 2500mAh+ NiMH AAs


Anonymous said...

Buy a K10 or K20 and use the propriotory LiIon battery..
Problem solved no more Bi%$hing

RiceHigh said...

So, why the K200D cannot have a Li-ion battery, so as to make it smaller and could perform better/stabler?

Anonymous said...

Ask Pentax why ;)
I'm sure they have a (good) reason for it...
Lithiums a highly unstable substance.
not that it matters.

RiceHigh said...

They usually had good reasons to cause inconveniences or just annoyances to their users which in return hurt their sales.

Anonymous said...

Actually doubt this battery issue hurt sales.... wouldn't stop me from buying one.

Anonymous said...

Many people just don't like being tied to a proprietary Li Ion battery. You can always get AA batteries in an emergency but try getting a replacement for your proprietary Li-Ion battery when it dies in Borneo while on a remote shoot with only a small village within ten miles.

Anonymous said...

Try travelling Ricehigh and you will see that AAs are indispensable.

Anonymous said...

Ricehigh, are you a Pentax K200D user? have you used it with them AA batteries? if not..just shut your "stupid" (as you have commented) hole.
I am using 2 sets of enloop one set (of 4)on the body and one set (of 4)on the grip. I can take more than 2000 shots (more than advertised). And it is cheap as shiet compare to other proprietary Li Ion batteries. still not as cheap as your mouth though. and certainly the camera has more quality than your mouth. they stopped CR-v3 because for the body grip. body grip is made strictly for the AA battery size and they don't want any conflict using two different sets of batteries. if you have a brain think before you speak.

RiceHigh said...

No problem. See here for what a K200D user reports for the classic NiMH battery problem he encounters.

As for the so-huge travelling "concern", *just* use mechanical film SLRs to shoot if the place you go is really so remote and under-developed. There are still many places on this planet don't have any battery that you can find and even no electricity. So? (So, even a more reliable and long-lasting power source is crucial!)

Anonymous said...

that is a Sigma flash problem link... has nothing to do w/ batteries.
anyways my general observation from REAL USERS of the k200 seem to show that it's a non-issue for most..
single charge of 4x AA powerex 2700mah batts on K200D allow me to take well over 1,100-1,300 photos over 3-4 days easy with flash 45% of the time

4x AA powerex 2100mah imedion slow discharge get me around 950-1,100 photos over 4- 8 days on a single charge on K200D
So power adaptors aren't really needed ;)

Anonymous said...

totally rubish article. It obviously that Rice does not know about Pentax too much. So just stop guessing and doing stupid suggestion.

Jolly said...


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Anonymous said...

I LIKE being able to buy replacement batteries almost anywhere I go, even places where there is no power for a recharger. In fact, its use of AA batteries was a primary consideration when I bought my camera. But it's not a Pentax, so YMMV.

I always heard Pentax was a reputable brand, but after reading your rant for awhile, maybe I heard wrong.

Pentax needs to learn, their customers decide whether Pentax lives or dies, NOT the stock market!

Anonymous said...

I bought the K200D for two reasons:
- AA lithiums
- Pentax 50mm DA f1.4 that I got NEW for $200

And FWIW, good luck finding proprietary battery packs and/or proprietary chargers — just 5 years after you buy your proprietary dSLR.

If my K200D becomes unusable someday, I'll need to find a used one if Pentax doesn't make a direct replacement for it. And currently, there are no replacements. The K-x is a entry-level camera, while the K-7 is a high-end camera.

Pentax, if you read these forums, you need a midrange camera like the K200D — with AA (or CRV3s).


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