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How do you clean your sensor?


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#1 Yarrago

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Posted 28 October 2013 - 07:12 AM

I've got dirt/dust on my sensor. So far I've tried blowing it out using an air pump, but it doesn't seem to have made much difference and so am looking at trying some more advanced techniques to get rid of the dirt/dust. I've googled around for a bit to try to find the best technique for cleaning it. It seems that there are a lot of methods and a lot of tools for the job, but I thought I'd try to find some real advice on here before I choose which method and tools to try. Thanks for the advice. Yarrago

#2 Genisis X

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Posted 28 October 2013 - 12:45 PM

I take it to a service centre and get them to do it for me. It's a pretty simple operation, but its also pretty easy to fuck your camera doing it ;) -X
"We were being told that we must become what we are not, sacrificing what we are to inherit the masquerade of what we will be. I was being told to accept the identity that others will give me. And I wondered, what made my dreams so easy to dismiss?" Shane Koyczan

#3 basketballfreak6

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Posted 28 October 2013 - 05:03 PM

sensor cleaning swabs seems most common, i've also seen these ionisation blowers that don't require touching of sensor, expensive tho i'd say just get service centre to do it also, if u shoot canon they do sensor clean and general check for like ~60 bux inc shipping back to u

#4 michael.jenkin

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Posted 30 October 2013 - 09:48 PM

I agree, if it is a Canon, send it in to Canon. I clean my own using swabs, pec pads, eclipse fluid etc however, I have had loads of practice and started on my oldest camera first. Everytime I do it, I am worried I will damage the camera and once I have done it, I often have to go back and try again. Canon/service agent is the better option.
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#5 pookiepony

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Posted 06 November 2013 - 07:13 PM

I do the same as Gen - send it to a service centre. Most of my photography is done outdoors and often in the dirt and dust so I try to keep up the maintenance although I know I don't take as good care as I should.

#6 Yarrago

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Posted 14 December 2013 - 03:26 PM

Thanks for all of the advice.

I ended up deciding to give it a go.

The methods that I choose to use (after the blower) were a sensor brush and then progress to wet cleaning using Sensor Swabs and eclipse. I found that the brush didn't really work that well and I did drag a little bit of lubricant across the sensor (which I was easily able to clean up using 2 sensor swabs). The swabs worked well and I ended up removing all of the original dust spots save 1 spot, however I reviewed my earliest photos and it is actually apparent in them so I'm guessing that its either a manufacturing defect or well engrained dirt either way itís on the side of the image and not a major concern for me (I'd never noticed it before).

On my first go it ended up taking me 4 swabs. I found that after I'd used 1, I was able to dummy practice with it out camera on a different surface to perfect my technique a little bit before moving on to using the others. I found that the swabs didn't dry as quickly as everyone had lead me to believe (I used 2 or 3 drops per swab)...again once I had used the first one I was able to examine this out of the camera. I found overall the job was a little more complicated than the simple swipe one side to the other and back again that some of the videos make out, but not to much worse and I think reading a few reviews of when things had gone wrong for others told me not to panic if things did go a little astray (streaking with the brush). I think that the DIY option was right for me and my camera and I'm happy with the result but I can see that its definitely not suitable for everyone and can appreciate why people recommend sending it to the service centre (I think on first experience it would have definitely been the option to go for cost wise and stress wise, but I hope that as I gain experience the situation will reverse for me).

For reference here are the resources that I ended up finding, but its definitely not for the faint hearted:
http://www.cleaningdigitalcameras.com/
http://www.sensorins...nualmethod.html
http://www.bythom.com/cleaning.htm
http://www.howtogeek...as-dslr-sensor/
http://www.prime-jun...sor.html?page=1


http://photosol.com/videos/#
http://photographyli...-than-5-minutes
http://www.digitalca...ensor-cleaning/
http://www.luminous-...ible-dust.shtml
http://www.digitalca...asp?newsID=3008
http://www.luminous-...p?topic=21263.0
http://andyhutchinso...ensor-cleaning/
http://www.dust-aid....Curt_Fargo.html


Yarrago

PS Sorry for bumping such and old thread, but thought you might be interested to hear my experience. (It took me a while to get the cleaning supplies since they are so expensive in Australia I found them much cheaper to order them from overseas).

#7 Guest_xyzzy frobozz_*

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Posted 15 December 2013 - 02:14 AM

Roll back the protective membrane and clean behind the barb. Repeated use can see a real build up of residue in this area and it is very important that you remove it. Failure to do so can result in problems zooming, getting a good shot in, or in simply having a sticky action. You have been warned.

#8 Genisis X

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Posted 15 December 2013 - 09:09 AM

Good stuff! Nice to see you had the courage to give it a whirl yourself! -X
"We were being told that we must become what we are not, sacrificing what we are to inherit the masquerade of what we will be. I was being told to accept the identity that others will give me. And I wondered, what made my dreams so easy to dismiss?" Shane Koyczan

#9 SquallStrife

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Posted 16 December 2013 - 01:15 PM

Remember that the surface you see behind the shutter is actually the IR cut filter, not the sensor itself. No reason not to be careful, of course, but breathe a little easier that if it does get damaged, it's not the end of the world.

Edited by SquallStrife, 16 December 2013 - 01:16 PM.

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#10 michael.jenkin

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Posted 05 January 2014 - 11:18 AM

Good stuff! Nice to see you had the courage to give it a whirl yourself!

-X


Excellent. I second Genisis X.

I also freaked out the first time I did it. I have now done it so many times (I have a large collection of cameras) that it is second nature.
Always be careful, but not scared.
Michael Jenkin (Mickyj) www.mickyj.com (Community website) *5 times Microsoft MVP award winner, Winner SMB150 2012, 2013 *Previously MacWorld Australia, CRN, ARN contributer *APAC Chairman GITCA (Global IT Community Association) *Managing Director - Business Technology Partners Microsoft Small Business Specialist (Back when it meant something)




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