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07-07-2009, 05:24 AM   #1
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Dust

I see some fat dark spots through the viewfinder. Just when I have a serious little event tomorrow. What's the best way to fix it?

Since I was checking the machine anyway, I executed Dust Alert and saw lots of black on white. How serious is this to be taken?

07-07-2009, 05:33 AM   #2
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clean it. If you care about the quality of your pictures. (on the sensor side). I use the pentax kit.
The viewfinder... well if you have pentamirror, is better don't use blower. May push the specs under the screen.
If you own K10/K20... use a blower.
07-07-2009, 05:42 AM   #3
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I had some spots stuck on my *istD. Normally I use a blower brush and artic butterfly (static brush) but neither worked.

I ultimately wrapped a lens cleaning tissue around a straw, and taped it on so that the end of the rolled up tissue could be rubed on the sensor cover. that worked.
07-07-2009, 05:58 AM   #4
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Well, I'm not the type that likes cleaning.... (you should see my house). And even though the Dust Alert JPG shows me all the black on white, the pictures don't seem affected by it (or I ain't seeing things right). Maybe I should bring it to the store for general service? I wonder how long that would take, but maybe the guy would just give me a fresh new K20.

07-07-2009, 08:32 AM   #5
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Some amount of dust in the viewfinder is, unfortunately, pretty much unavoidable. trying to clean it is as likely to make it worse as better, and even if you succeed, it's just going to get more with time. Better to simply get used to it.

As for the sensor dust, if it isn't showing on your pictures (but try shooting the sky at f/16 - dust won't show on all shots), then it probably isn't really there. The Dust Alert function oftne shows false positives - you have to be sure to point the camera at a completely featureless subject (like blue sky) or it will misinterpret anything it sees in the scene as dust on the sensor. Lots of people get fooled by that. As it is, I consider the Dust Alert feature to be not a whole lot more useful than shooting the sky at f/16.

If it is sensor dust, BTW, first try running the Dust Removal a dozen or so times in a row. Then try the Sensor Cleaning mode with a Rocket Blower or similar squeeze bulb device to blow it off. You can't realistically be expecting to bring the camera in for service every time it gets a little dust on the sensor. That would be like bringing your printer in for service every time you need to change the ink tanks, or calling in an electrician every time a light bulb blows. This is the sort of thing you really need to expect to do yourself most of the time. If you bring in it for service during the 30-day exchange period, it's possible they'd just replace it, sure, but that's just putting off the inevitable.

Last edited by Marc Sabatella; 07-07-2009 at 08:38 AM.
07-07-2009, 09:21 AM   #6
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Hey Marc.

Maybe you're right, but It annoys me that only after such a short time, there's already dust in the viewfinder.

I pointed at a white wall, though it has a texture. Is that good enough to test with Dust Alert?

I don't expect to bring it everytime there's some dust on the sensor, but I was given a three-year time that grants repairs, warranty, services, etc. one time a year. I might as well just bring it in this first year just to get rid of the viewfinder dust, because it really annoys me.
07-07-2009, 10:02 AM   #7
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Viewfinder dust has been an ongoing problem since cameras had something like a focusing screen. I go through phases where the dust collects and drives me crazy; then for months I'll pull the focusing screen and clean it carefully every time. Then I get tired of doing that, and the dust starts collecting again.

Sensor dust is another issue entirely, though. The thing that puzzles me most is when I get something on the sensor that shows clearly with only one kind of shot - say a macro with my D-FA 100. Can't see it with my 16-50, but there it is in every "bug shot". Crazy. I've had my K20D for around a year, I think, and I've had to clean the sensor filter once (you're not actually touching the sensor itself, but a piece of interposed filter glass).
07-07-2009, 12:39 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Mann Quote
It annoys me that only after such a short time, there's already dust in the viewfinder.
Understandable, but as I said, totally normal and pretty much unavoidable. It will come, it will move around, it will go, it will be replaced by fresh dust. By all means, if you paid for a cleaning a year, you might as well use it. But I'd suggest waiting until you definitely have dust on the sensor that y are having trouble blowing off yourself. That does happen on occasion.

QuoteQuote:
I pointed at a white wall, though it has a texture. Is that good enough to test with Dust Alert?
Not in my experience. Of course, nothing is *totally* without texture, but a wall with texture added is not likely to cut it. A sheet of white paper has worked for me, but the sky is just as easy.

07-07-2009, 12:42 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by jstevewhite Quote
The thing that puzzles me most is when I get something on the sensor that shows clearly with only one kind of shot - say a macro with my D-FA 100. Can't see it with my 16-50, but there it is in every "bug shot". Crazy.
Not crazy - totally normal. Sensor dust tends to be visible only at small apertures, which of course tend to be used more with macro.
07-07-2009, 01:23 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Marc Sabatella Quote
Understandable, but as I said, totally normal and pretty much unavoidable. It will come, it will move around, it will go, it will be replaced by fresh dust. By all means, if you paid for a cleaning a year, you might as well use it. But I'd suggest waiting until you definitely have dust on the sensor that y are having trouble blowing off yourself. That does happen on occasion.
Yes, indeed. Actually, the viewfinder dust doesn't bother me anymore.


QuoteQuote:
Not in my experience. Of course, nothing is *totally* without texture, but a wall with texture added is not likely to cut it. A sheet of white paper has worked for me, but the sky is just as easy.
I pointed it at a smooth white door. No dust at all.
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