Where/How to get my sensor clean?

Discussion in 'Photography Equipment & Products' started by keith204, Aug 8, 2007.

  1. keith204

    keith204 No longer a newbie, moving up!

    May 20, 2007
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    Bolivar, MO
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    At the end of this season (or when I sell my XT) I want to take my camera to get its sensor cleaned. Or, I can clean it myself if somebody has good advice. The sensor has dust from a dirt track on it. I can't see it in most shots, but I'm sure it's there....as I switch lenses once each race (switch to my wide angle for victory lane shots)

    Has anyone had experience with getting their sensors clean?

  2. Big Mike

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

    Dec 16, 2003
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    It's actually a fairly simple procedure, if you have the right tools.

    Firstly, I'd use a bulb blower. Activate the sensor cleaning mode, turn the camera so that the front is facing down and blow the dust out. If you have dust that is stuck on, you will have to be a little more invasive. You could use an electrostatic device like the Arctic Butterfly, which is a brush what should pick up the dust.

    Another way to clean the sensor is with a sensor swab of some type. You open the swab and put a few drops of cleaning fluid on it. Then you just run the swab over the sensor, flip it over and make another pass. That's it.

    Cleaning the sensor isn't really tough. It's not as delicate as people think, there is a protective lens over the sensor, which is actually what you are cleaning.

    Do a search for sensor cleaning, there is plenty to read.
  3. Wot Mike said.

    Sensor cleaning is not that big a deal, I do it probably quarterly on my cameras (and I have stupid-expensive gear.)

    I use all three:

    First I use the blower, in my case a Giotto Rocket because I am a sucker for cool design, but any blower will do. That usually dislodges 75% of all dust.

    Second: I use the Arctic Butterfly. It's pretty straight-forward, read the manual. This will get another 15%.

    Third: If you have actual spots on your sensor, you're going to want to use the sensor cleaning fluid with the appropriate swab. Again, Visible Dust has (in my mind) the best product. Check out their bundled offers. In my case, I get spots on the sensor by changing lenses in hot and muggy climates. If you suddenly find yourself in an air-conditioned environment, you might get condensation spots.

    This is not a big deal. You will need to learn to do this, regardless of what kind of anti-dirt technology is being developed.

  4. Oh, one more thing. No need to exagerate. If you've only got a few spots, learn to remove them in Photoshop for the occasional spot where they're visible.

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