sensor cleaning tips

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by Draken, Sep 6, 2008.

  1. Draken

    Draken TPF Noob!

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    hello chaps,

    any tips on items or procedures on cleaning my sensor think i have some dust on it and im getting spots on my shots. Any way to see whether its a dirty filter or lens first ?

    cheers. :thumbup:
     
  2. Josh66

    Josh66 Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    To check if it's dusty, take a picture of something bright (the sky, a white wall...) at f/32. You'll see the dust if it's there.

    If it does need cleaning there are a few different options. You could send it in or do it your self. If you do it yourself there are a lot of different products you could use. I use this, but some people don't like the idea of wiping a solvent on the sensor.
    If that doesn't sound too bad to you, it's pretty easy.

    If the thought of liquids on your sensor scares you there are a few brushes (dry) & blowers you could look into.
     
  3. tirediron

    tirediron Watch the Birdy! Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Okay, first off, stop your lens down to f16 or better and take a picture of a plain white/light-coloured wall. Look at that exposure on your computer and if you see small, round dots, that's almost certainly "sensor" dust (Remember that you never actually touch the sensor, but the high-pass filter in front of it. This is made of a mineral-glass like composite and is quite tough). Getting rid of the dust isn't too difficult normally.
    The first step is to remove the lens, and lock the mirror up, and then, with the camera held so that the lens opening faces down, use a blower bulb like the Giottos Rocket to blow the filter clean. Once that's done perform the test again; if it's still dusty, move on to the next step.

    This involves dry-cleaning again, but with more advanced tools. I use and recommend the Arctic Butterfly from www.visibledust.com. At $100ish dollars or more, it's not cheap, but you'll save that money the second time you don't have to take your camera to a professional for what really amounts to routine maintenance.
    If that doesn't work, then you'll need to go to a wet-cleaning method, and again, I like the Visible Dust products. Here you have to be careful, because while it's unlikely you'll damage the sensor, with wet-cleaning it's possible to leave streaks which are very difficult to remove.
     
  4. Joves

    Joves No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Once you are sure of having dust on you sensor. The first step is to turn the camera down and, use a good blow buld and, blow air over it several times. I have the Giotto Rocket which really blows it out well. A wet cleaning is only required for stuck on dust. Also you may have to manually focus to get the camera to focus on the sky or a white wall. After you have blown it out check it again. Also never use compressed air as, most will leave oils or other contaminates on the sensor. You arent cleaning the sensor either but the bypass filter.
     

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