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12-26-2013, 02:54 PM   #1
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Do I need to clean the viewfinder, or the focus screen?

Hello,

I have one big black speck (and one or two smaller ones) visible in the viewfinder of my K-x. I can see these whether or not I have a lens on the camera. I don't see these if I put the camera in Live View.

From what I have read, these are either
a) on the viewfinder glass - but I have tried blasting the viewfinder with a Rocket Blower, and have seen no change.
b) on the focus screen - but, if that is true, would I also see them in Live View?

I would appreciate any advice on this. Thanks!

12-26-2013, 03:06 PM   #2
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No, they wouldn't show up in LV. VF/focus screen is not used in LV. They are either on your focus screen or in your VF.
12-26-2013, 03:11 PM   #3
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Hey,

Hopefully it is the viewfinder, so just go ahead and clean that. Sometimes, if the spots are 'sticky' a rocket blower will not do the job (or with things like sea spray).
Use a microfiber cloth (you would use for your sunglasses) and clean with that. Don't worry, you cannot scratch it.

Hopefully this will solve the problem. If not... well... cleaning the focusing screen requires some finesse and the willingness to 'get into' your camera. You can do it yourself, it is fairly easy, but if you stress out about the idea of getting near the mirror... I would pay a pro to clean it
Oh... and absolutely NO WINDEX


p.s.: When you switch to Live View, you hear the mirror flop. So what you see there does not go through the focusing screen since the translucent mirror is already flopped up.
12-26-2013, 04:11 PM   #4
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Take the lens off and shine a flashlight up at the focusing screen -- you might see it there. Target your rocket blower directly at it and that might get it. Otherwise, use something like a clean small (like, for art, not walls) paintbrush, very gently. The focusing screen scratches very easily.

12-26-2013, 04:43 PM   #5
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The dust often get stuck between the focusing screen and viewfinder and blowers generally won't be successful at removing it.
12-26-2013, 06:59 PM   #6
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A fairly small investment in a sensor cleaning brush is a good idea. No chemicals involved, just a light touch. Follow the instructions for cleaning/preparing the brush. Very useful for removing stubborn specks from the mirror, focusing screen, and sensor. I've used it on all 3 with no adverse effects.
12-27-2013, 11:37 AM   #7
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It might also be on the mirror
QuoteOriginally posted by DogLover Quote
ery useful for removing stubborn specks from the mirror, focusing screen, and sensor.
12-27-2013, 12:42 PM   #8
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Well - I was hoping to hear that if I could not see it in Live View, it HAD to be on the viewfinder, but I figured that would not be the case. But now I have more questions:
1) Dust between focus screen and viewfinder - on a K-x, I assume there is nothing that can be done, since focus screen is not removable?
2) When you say a "sensor cleaning brush", is that the same as a LensPen?
3) If it is on the mirror, my understanding is that Iv should just live with it, and not touch the mirror - correct?

Thanks again to everyone.

12-27-2013, 04:05 PM   #9
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Well, right now I got a hair thing stuck between the screen and prism in my K-5, right in the middle of my view.
12-27-2013, 04:36 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by mblanc Quote
Well - I was hoping to hear that if I could not see it in Live View, it HAD to be on the viewfinder, but I figured that would not be the case. But now I have more questions:
1) Dust between focus screen and viewfinder - on a K-x, I assume there is nothing that can be done, since focus screen is not removable?
2) When you say a "sensor cleaning brush", is that the same as a LensPen?
3) If it is on the mirror, my understanding is that Iv should just live with it, and not touch the mirror - correct?

Thanks again to everyone.
1) It is possible (at least on the bodies I have looked closely at) to remove the VF with some small screws. This should be done only as a last resort. I would try a rocket blower with the tip placed strategically within the mirror box first. You may get enough air moving around the culprits to do the trick.
2) Definitely not. It's this: Amazon.com: D-SLR Sensor Cleaning Brush for 1.5x & 1.6x Sensors (16mm) - D-SLR-16: Everything Else
3)You can touch the mirror, very gently, with the sensor brush. Be sure to follow the instructions precisely. You have to "charge" the brush before every stroke with a rocket blower. This is to provide a static charge and to remove any particles on the brush. A particle embedded in the brush can cause damage, possibly catastrophic.

There are mirror cleaning brushes also, and I have one, but other than the physical shape of the handle/bristle holder I can't tell the difference. Bristles appear the same. They have the same instructions.
12-30-2013, 06:23 PM   #11
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Thanks - I cleaned it up by hitting the focus screen with the Rocket Blower.
01-02-2014, 07:57 AM   #12
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If you have dust, hair etc on the back of your view and/or focus screens it is easy to use the focus screen lock and drop the focus screen then use a blower with the screen dropped and carefully blow out the dust particles on the backsides of the view screen and focus screen. Or you remove the focus screen entirely and blow out the cavity then the focus screen and re-install it. Best to do in a really dust free environment. If you have a Dslr you will always mysteriously get dust behind the focus screen and on the inside of the view screen at some point and time. Either you live with it there or carefully clean it the best you can. Unless you want to send it somewhere to pay to get it cleaned.

PENTAX K100D / K200D / K2000D / K-m / K-x / K-r Focusing Screen Installation Instruction
01-02-2014, 09:49 AM   #13
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Mirror, focus screen or VF.

Pay attention when cleaning your focus screen!!!
They are very delicate and you can scratch them very easily!
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