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03-28-2012, 05:33 AM   #16
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Thanks for all the great feedback!

03-28-2012, 07:54 AM   #17

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QuoteOriginally posted by RioRico Quote
Unless someone demands them now.
Well, since you kindly mentioned it, YES.

*pulls out popcorn and relaxes on chair*
03-28-2012, 09:32 AM   #18
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QuoteOriginally posted by RioRico Quote
(*) I have a computer sizzle-and-smoke story, and a catastrophic murderous hard-disk failure story, but I'll save those for another time. Unless someone demands them now.
QuoteOriginally posted by Giklab Quote
Well, since you kindly mentioned it, YES.

*pulls out popcorn and relaxes on chair*
1) Sizzle-and-smoke story: My first fully-functional electronic computer (not just the digital circuits I'd been kludging together) was a Heathkit H8 in a biggish mainframe box and an octal (not hex) front panel. All the circuit boards required that components be soldered together.

All the circuit boards and their assembly instructions were straightforward and professional, not difficult to deal with. All except one little half-size board, to configure memory so I could run CP/M and not just HDOS. Its instructions were xeroxed, not offset-printed, and they were a bit unclear as to how the board should be mounted. So I mounted it the same way as the full-length boards.

I hit the power switch. The half-board smoked, and a chip exploded. Oops. I spent a few days replacing all the components (cheap, luckily) and retrying, with the same results. Then I got smart and reversed the board on its buss. Success! Mounted 'normally', a 50vdc line fed a 6v regulator, which self-destructed. Wham! Sloppy design. Sloppy print. Too much excitement. It's a bad thing when digital electronics sizzle and smoke and explode.

2) Catastrophic murderous hard-disk failure story: This comes second-hand. A cow-orker at the Very Large Corporate Computer Shop that employed us told of his days (late 1970s) at MIT, where he trained in Operations (keeping the machines running). His group ran some big DECsystem maxi-minis with early big hard-drives. These were 12in / 31cm discs rotating at something like 3600 rpm, or maybe 7200. Lots of mass moving fast.

So Tom has the midnight shift at the control panel, and somewhere around oh-dark-hundred he wanders off for fresh coffee. The coffee machine shudders briefly. Tom walks back to Operations. And stops. A drive cabinet is torn open. Bits of hard disk are embedded in all the walls, in the control panel, in his desk and chair. The drive has fragmented, explosively. If he hadn't gone for coffee, he'd be dead. Bummer.

Then there was the time I ran my Doberman through the machine room at the Very Large Corporate Computer Shop, but that's another story. Ta ta.
03-28-2012, 10:08 AM   #19
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aside from a few hot pixels on my *istD it is still working since I got it in november 2003. It has, in that time, shot almost as many frames as all 3 of my film cameras.

I have only had 2 failures on cameras, both coincidentially on my K10D, the shutter, at just over 10K, and the lens locking pin at 16K. The locking pin failure also causes the screw drive to remain recessed. No great loss as I have a split image finder and M42 mount installed any way. My K7 and K5 now do th ebulk of the work

actually to answer the question properly, i think that the biggest risk factors are the mechanics, but these will get a ton more use than the film counterparts just because after the initial camera purchase, shots are for free. I have shot probably 4 times as many photos in the roughly 10 years I have shot digital (considering my first 2 MP P&S, than I did in the 20 years I shot film.

as for electronics and the electrical portion, expect switches to fail first, especially the e-dials (my *istD is a little inconsistent on the front edial (but it got really drenched once) . The rest will probably work until there is a catostropic failure of one component, and then it will just stop.

Last edited by Lowell Goudge; 03-28-2012 at 10:15 AM.
03-28-2012, 10:52 AM   #20
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I have 2 broken ist ds, one with a dead ccd, and another with a broken usb port on the mother board.
Can't make one out of 2 because the pixel defect compensation and adjustments are mapped into the gpu firmware on the mother board.
The software pack to remap is not available as far as I know, and the repairs or replacement parts are just not worth while.

But I can keep a 1947 Philco FM (even with its quirky local oscillator) and a 1963 Sansui early transistor amp in good repair!
And the 1939 South Bend 9A still runs like new.
03-28-2012, 11:16 AM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by wombat2go Quote
Can't make one out of 2 because the pixel defect compensation and adjustments are mapped into the gpu firmware on the mother board.
The software pack to remap is not available as far as I know, and the repairs or replacement parts are just not worth while.
If you shoot in RAW most RAW programs do that on the fly these days.
03-28-2012, 11:32 AM   #22

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@Riorico Now there's something to tell your grandkids...

Everything comes down to something small going phoot! and clunking the entire device.
03-28-2012, 11:46 AM   #23
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I'm with Lowell here, it will be mechanical failure that takes down many of the DSLRs. Like Lowell I shoot far more on digital than I ever did on film (or for that matter could have even afforded to)
my ds, k10, k7and Oly E300 are all working perfectly . between them I have shot probably 6-8 times as many frames as i did on the 8 or so film bodies i owned in the 30 years prior to that. Add in the large number of film bodies kicking around that can be used for parts (like the Spottie example) and it's not unrealistic to expect my film bodies to remain viable past any of the 4 cameras i own now. Caveat being there is still someone like Eric around who can actually repair them.
I don't think we will see ever a host of small specialist guys like Eric who can do the repairs for Digital bodies, and even if you can find them the parts and labour will cost more than replacing the body with a newer much better performing body based on how fast the tech is changing. If my ds or K10 crapped out I doubt i would even bother with an estimate. they've been superseded by many newer models that i could pickup a good used version of for not much more than the cost of many repairs


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