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The Nikon D600 Has Sensor Dust Issues
PETAPIXEL ^ | Oct.23, 2012 | Roger Cicala

Posted on 10/22/2012 11:22:29 PM PDT by SWAMPSNIPER

We tend not to get too excited about sensor dust problems at LensRentals; we clean sensors on every camera after every rental, so it’s just routine. When we started carrying the Nikon D600, they all arrived with a fair amount of dust, but that’s pretty routine, too. Manufacturing and shipping can be a dusty experience.

When our techs started complaining that D600s were all coming back from their first rental with a lot more dust (despite being freshly cleaned before leaving) we didn’t pay much attention to that either. We all remember the oil/dust issues the D3x and D3s had. Those mostly cleared up after a few cleanings.

But the dust kept reappearing with every rental, and, more impressively, it was generally in the same location (in the upper-left 1/3 of the image). That did get our attention, so we started looking into the matter a bit. We kept dust pictures for 20 consecutive D600s returning from rental and saw that the problem was very real.

Graphics at site. these cameras seem to be self contaminating.

(Excerpt) Read more at petapixel.com ...


TOPICS: Arts/Photography; Hobbies; Miscellaneous
KEYWORDS: issue; nikon; sensor

1 posted on 10/22/2012 11:22:39 PM PDT by SWAMPSNIPER
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To: lawnguy; pandoraou812; Daffynition; barker; ferri; gjeiii; genefromjersey; texas booster; ...

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2 posted on 10/22/2012 11:25:26 PM PDT by SWAMPSNIPER (The Second Amendment, a Matter of Fact, Not a Matter of Opinion)
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To: SWAMPSNIPER

I haven’t noticed this issue on my D600, which is a great camera, and I prefer it to the D800 I’m going to sell.

The D800 has a left focus issue, which Nikon seems to be in denial about, where if the center focus sensors focus properly, when using the viewfinder, the left focus sensors when used will be out of focus.

The D800 is a great camera, and it doesn’t affect the landscape type photography I mainly do, but there are a great many photogs not happy with their $3000 paperweights.

I prefer the D600 for its smaller size and lighter weight, and the fact that it uses the ML-L3 wireless remote, about the size of a matchbook and selling for less than $15. Extremely convenient compared to the clunky and expensive rig you need to do the same thing with Nikon’s pricier cameras.

Anyway, Swampie, thanks for the heads up. I’ll keep an eye out for dust in my pics.

Later.


3 posted on 10/23/2012 1:10:40 AM PDT by moonhawk (Free Republic: Show prep for Rush Limbaugh.)
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To: moonhawk
Take some sky shots, if there is crud on the sensor it will be obvious.

I've got an illuminated sensor loupe, I can really do a thorough inspection of the sensor. It was a good investment.

4 posted on 10/23/2012 1:21:26 AM PDT by SWAMPSNIPER (The Second Amendment, a Matter of Fact, Not a Matter of Opinion)
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To: SWAMPSNIPER

I bought a Nikon P90 that had horrible sensor noise. I exchanged it for a new one, and it’s sensor noise was even worse.

I’ll never buy another piece of Nikon again.


5 posted on 10/23/2012 3:13:19 AM PDT by Yo-Yo (Is the /sarc tag really necessary?)
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To: Yo-Yo

That is a price you pay for stabilizing that 24X zoom in part by using high ISO. Did you try manually setting the ISO? You might need a tripod but the images should clean up.


6 posted on 10/23/2012 3:35:10 AM PDT by SWAMPSNIPER (The Second Amendment, a Matter of Fact, Not a Matter of Opinion)
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To: SWAMPSNIPER

Use the widest possible lens at the smallest aperture to really bring out the crud.


7 posted on 10/23/2012 3:59:52 AM PDT by libh8er
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To: libh8er
I looks like some of the D600s are somehow transferring oil to the sensor. Maybe the mirror linkage is being over lubed during assembly. Oil is nasty to deal with, it creeps and spreads.

I have a lot of trouble here with pine pollen, if it sits on the sensor for a while it is hard to remove. My Rocket blower handles most problems if they aren't sticky.

Cleaning a sensor isn't difficult but many people don't want to tackle it. At 40 to 50 bucks a pop a lot of them just put up with a dirty sensor. That's an outrageous fee BTW, for a 10 minute job.

8 posted on 10/23/2012 4:21:51 AM PDT by SWAMPSNIPER (The Second Amendment, a Matter of Fact, Not a Matter of Opinion)
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To: SWAMPSNIPER
The 600 is out of my price range but if I had one of these I would go ballistic.

And I mean.. BALLISTIC!! As in; a Saturn V rocket taking off, Krakatoa Erupting, our biggest Nuke going off, and Space Aliens fighting a battle on planet earth!

And I'd prolly wind up in jail for Assault With A Faulty Camera.

9 posted on 10/23/2012 4:25:34 AM PDT by Condor51 (Si vis pacem, para bellum.)
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To: Condor51

I don’t really need a full frame camera. For what I do the APS format works out great, I can get up to 600mm equivalent from an affordable lens and not break my 70 year old neck with massive weights.


10 posted on 10/23/2012 4:35:40 AM PDT by SWAMPSNIPER (The Second Amendment, a Matter of Fact, Not a Matter of Opinion)
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To: Yo-Yo; SWAMPSNIPER
I bought a Nikon P90 that had horrible sensor noise. I exchanged it for a new one, and it’s sensor noise was even worse.
*** That is a price you pay for stabilizing that 24X zoom in part by using high ISO. ***

Yep, I think SWAMPSNIPER is right as herein lies 'the problem' with that P90: High Sensitivity (up to ISO 6400). When I see ISO's up that high I cringe as I'd never push it that far as you're asking for noise. Which means I'd have to do a LOT of my shooting off Auto Mode.

It's like waaay back in the olden days shooting Tri-X (ASA 400) and 'pushing it' (under exposing) to 1600. You could get a lot of interesting shots otherwise not possible, but you're going to see a lot of noise with the slightest enlargement.

Noise is one more reason I went with the Nikon D3000 -- thanks to a slight Digital Education from SS here on FR when it finally came time to put down my Nikon FE for Digital. The normal ISO for the D3000 is 100-1600, and 3200 'expanded' -- which I've never yet used, and I get fantastic enlargements (They're framed and hanging on our walls).

11 posted on 10/23/2012 4:49:55 AM PDT by Condor51 (Si vis pacem, para bellum.)
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To: SWAMPSNIPER
I concur, my 'small frame' D3000 is perfect. So besides cost who needs to lug around Seven Pounds of camera from your neck.

I did that with my Nikon FE. Motor Drive on, SunPak 'Potato Masher' flash attached , and a big honking wide angle zoom lens on it (batteries for everything weighed about two pounds /s). Maybe that's why I have back problems today? ;-)]

12 posted on 10/23/2012 4:58:00 AM PDT by Condor51 (Si vis pacem, para bellum.)
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To: SWAMPSNIPER

This is a really interesting article. But, no pictures this morning? I’m disappointed.


13 posted on 10/23/2012 5:38:26 AM PDT by afraidfortherepublic
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To: afraidfortherepublic

I haven’t been able to get out recently. I gave up my Jeep when the economy got bad, got to depend on the kids to go anywhere. Recovery around here is going to be a long, slow process.


14 posted on 10/23/2012 5:55:14 AM PDT by SWAMPSNIPER (The Second Amendment, a Matter of Fact, Not a Matter of Opinion)
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To: SWAMPSNIPER

Sorry to hear that. But, your pictures don’t have to be NEW pictures. All of your pictures are so delightful that they make my day.


15 posted on 10/23/2012 6:04:42 AM PDT by afraidfortherepublic
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To: SWAMPSNIPER

I was surprised that a modern Nikon would have a dust problem because the sensor vibration is supposed to take care of that. But if it’s oil, that’s different, not to mention nasty. Some of Nikon’s AIS lenses from the 80s had the problem of oil from the aperture blades leaking out and depositing onto the glass. But this is the first time I am hearing of oil on the sensor.

Has this problem been reported on the DPreview forums ? If it’s really widespread then Ken Rockwell will address it at some point too.


16 posted on 10/23/2012 6:37:48 AM PDT by libh8er
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To: libh8er
The various sensor vibrating systems are all limited. Sticky pollen, oily dandruff and similar crud can hang on tight.

There are some upset people at DPR, that's a lot of money to spend for less than perfection.

17 posted on 10/23/2012 6:52:43 AM PDT by SWAMPSNIPER (The Second Amendment, a Matter of Fact, Not a Matter of Opinion)
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To: SWAMPSNIPER

For a short while I worked in the repair/rental part of a camera shop.

We’d get these old SLRs whose internal materials had deteriorated; especially foam rubber light seals and mirror dampers.

Some of them would turn to mush and/or flake off in little bits.

Maybe the Nikons mentioned have an internal materials problem that is shedding these little bits and pieces. Shame, if so.

Does any camera manufacturer have some purposely sticky stuff inside the image box to trap and hold debris? Directly under a self-cleaning sensor would seem to be a good place for it. Of course, the camera maker would have to make sure the the sticky stuff would have a long lifetime without becoming a contamination source in its own right. (3M lo-tack chemist, please pick up the nearest white courtesy phone.)

Lenses are another source of entry for environmental contaminants. Lots of lenses, especially zooms, work like bellows as their front barrels move to and fro. Some of the pro lenses have sealing of some sort, but it’s tricky when the internal volume of the lens changes as a result of either focusing or zooming.


18 posted on 10/23/2012 7:57:17 AM PDT by Erasmus (Zwischen des Teufels und des tiefen, blauen Meers)
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To: Erasmus
No, these are new cameras. I've replaced a lot of light seals and mirror dampers but digital cameras don't use anything similar. I've got a small stable of functional 35mm stuff, Minolta, Pentax and Canon, always got to tinker with something.

The self cleaners do use a sticky trap but damp or gummy crud won't just shake off.

19 posted on 10/23/2012 8:21:42 AM PDT by SWAMPSNIPER (The Second Amendment, a Matter of Fact, Not a Matter of Opinion)
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To: Condor51; SWAMPSNIPER
That is a price you pay for stabilizing that 24X zoom in part by using high ISO.

My P90 noise is not because of high ISO settings. It is random pixel noise that gets progressively worse the longer the camera is powered up, and shows up as white spots (very similar to dead pixels in a CMOS video camera sensor) in the photos. The longer the camera is powered up, the more dead pixels that appear.

20 posted on 10/23/2012 10:25:58 AM PDT by Yo-Yo (Is the /sarc tag really necessary?)
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To: Yo-Yo
Post some pics which show the noise. Don't do anything to strip the EXIF data. If it's not high ISO it could be the sensor overheating but if you aren't shooting continuously I can't see why it would.
21 posted on 10/23/2012 10:56:08 AM PDT by SWAMPSNIPER (The Second Amendment, a Matter of Fact, Not a Matter of Opinion)
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To: moonhawk
I am still shooting with a D40 - my first DSLR. Prior to this I was an OM4/4T (Olympus) geek until moving over to Nikon, basically for the sake of one lens. My favorite body of all time is the FE, followed by the F3 variants.

In any case I mention this because I would appreciate any recommendations. I would like to buy a USED camera and spend less than a grand. I tend to shoot in very low light conditions, and can't stand flashes.

As always SNIPER thanks for your regular dose of inspiration.
22 posted on 10/23/2012 11:13:02 AM PDT by golux
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To: Erasmus

Can lenses be cleaned inside if dust or something gets inside one of them?


23 posted on 10/23/2012 7:21:58 PM PDT by Bellflower (The LORD is Holy, separated from all sin, perfect, righteous, high and lifted up.)
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To: golux

You should be able to find a good used D7000 for under a grand easy.

16 megapixels and handles like a dream. One of my favorites. I just sold mine. It’s DX too, so it will use all the lenses your D40 does. You’ll have a hard time stepping up to FX in that price range, but you could get lucky.

My first Nikon was an F3 HP. I miss it it, but not messing with film. there are still some hold outs that prefer film, though.

A good site for camera reviews and general photo advice is Ken Rockwell.com

Good luck.


24 posted on 10/23/2012 9:11:10 PM PDT by moonhawk (Free Republic: Show prep for Rush Limbaugh.)
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To: Bellflower

Yes, but only by a tech. Where the lens owner sends the lens (to a factory or independent service center) is a judgement call that the lens owner must make, and good luck to him.


25 posted on 10/24/2012 7:26:37 AM PDT by Erasmus (Zwischen des Teufels und des tiefen, blauen Meers)
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To: moonhawk

I am looking up the D7000 - this thing shoots MOVIES? Does the mirror stay up when it is shooting? Gee whiz I got old quick. Okay... Just inside my range. Thanks.


26 posted on 10/25/2012 12:38:26 AM PDT by golux
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To: golux

Pretty much all the new DSLRs do video. I would prefer a modern camera that did not. I could also do without built in flash and a lot of other nonsense that make cameras bulkier, heavier and more complex.


27 posted on 10/25/2012 6:55:22 AM PDT by moonhawk (Free Republic: Show prep for Rush Limbaugh.)
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