i think my sensor's biting the dust (help needed, imgs)

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by notelliot, Jan 31, 2008.

  1. notelliot

    notelliot TPF Noob!

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    i started using my d70s as a back-up a while ago, and until now it's been a pretty reliable camera when in a bind. no glamour shots here.
    i tried to get an image of the sensor today whilst at work but compact cameras aren't good with reflections/specific shooting conditions. but, it looks like a patch of mold growing underneth the AA/IR filter.
    i noticed this the other day when i was cleaning my sensor, before i started cleaning. i took a bit of solution to the affected area, but it didn't lift. (sidenote: my cleaning technique isn't the issue, i was trained ;)) so that made me start thinking it was under the filter - but is there enough space for mold to grow between the filters and sensor? i can't see there being a lot of room to grow, but i know nothing about mold, and my sensor knowledge isn't extravagant. and also, i don't shoot in the rain. i've taken it out while it's been misty or wet out, but there hasn't been a collective amount of water in or on it. i realise it's not weather sealed, so it still could have some moisture inside to cause mold.
    next thing i did was some test shots. without a lens mounted, i get this (little scary):
    [​IMG]
    this doesn't look like the result of mold. it looks like a supernova of pixels. dead and dying. eek.

    here it is (top center, little black "dust" spot) @ 18mm/3.5. this is why i wanted to clean my sensor, looks like dust. not so much a huge deal - i can replace it in the near future.
    [​IMG]
    again @ 85mm/1.4 and flash.
    [​IMG]
    once more @ 85mm/8 and flash.
    [​IMG]

    now, as you expose less and less, it becomes a lot more noticeable. but if i properly expose a shot (particularly where the defect is) you can hardly see it.
    luckily, this isn't my main shooting rig, so i'm not really stressed about it. it had quite a good life for what i put it through. i'm just VERY curious to see what the hell it is. so i can either avoid it in the future (if i caused the problem) or, if its cheap and available, replace the sensor.
    i'm not sure if i'm going to send it in for repair/to see what's wrong.
    any info or theories would be helpful.
     
  2. Sideburns

    Sideburns TPF Noob!

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    it actually does look a lot like mould. Mould is basically microscopic...so it can really grow anywhere. I'd send it to Nikon.
     
  3. photogincollege

    photogincollege TPF Noob!

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    Well I am not positive about the price, but i think its around 150-200 dollars for a new sensor (dont hold me to that though, I just remember someone saying it was around there.)
     
  4. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Plus the cost for someone to change it...which would probably be more than the price of the parts.
     
  5. confucious

    confucious TPF Noob!

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    For the OP...totally off topic but -

    Is that test shot from Black's inside the Rideau center???

    Just curious....
     
  6. logan9967

    logan9967 TPF Noob!

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    man that is scary, i had to take my lense off and pop a shot just to make sure too (nothing on mine so i did a little jig)
    and that does look a little like mold
     
  7. notelliot

    notelliot TPF Noob!

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    thanks for the info guys.

    yeah. i work there part-time.

    thanks for the info guys.
     
  8. AluminumStudios

    AluminumStudios TPF Noob!

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    Bad pixels would probably manifest themselves as very discreet, sharp distortions that would be obvious as heck in any photo. That amorphous shape and the modest effect it is having on photos at this point definitely looks like mold.

    There is normally a spacer and a very thin layer of air between the sensor and the hotmirror in front of it (the sensor is a delicate silicon chip, if the glass hotmirror contacted it it would probably cause significant damage.)

    I'm sure Nikon could fix it if you sent it in, but the cost of a new hotmirror, sensor, and labor wouldn't really make it worth it for the camera probably considering the price you could find a decent used one for most likely.

    Hmm, I wonder if mold spores could be tempted to float from your camera body into your lenses ...
     
  9. notelliot

    notelliot TPF Noob!

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    checked my lenses after the first mold post. none are visibly affected.

    thanks for the detailed sensor info though.
     

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