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Scapula Memory
12th February 2008, 11:33 AM
Thought I would open this topic up for some opinions on sensor cleaning, so just wondering if anyone has been brave enough to do this themselves and if so what did you use and how was the result?

I have no need at the present and the Oly dust buster looks to be very effective but would be interested to hear of others who have. It looks like something best left to the pros to be honest :confused:

theMusicMan
12th February 2008, 11:37 AM
Oooh, great thread John, great thread.

I think this might be an opportunity for Ian to write up an article on how to clean the sensors in E-Series cameras...

@Ian: watcha think... :)

HughofBardfield
12th February 2008, 11:41 AM
I bought a kit with swabs and Eclipse cleaning fluid to keep in my camera bag, plus the "SensorPen" version of the LensPen I use for glass. After 15 months of Oly DSLR ownership, I have yet to find any dust problems, despite frequent lens changing. I do try and make sure the camera is pointing down and away from the wind etc etc.

I agree that I don't fancy the job myself, but I thought I should be equipped on the Murphy's Law principle...

dbutch
12th February 2008, 12:41 PM
My original E-1 is 4 1/2 years old, I checked some sky shots last weekend and no trace of dust, the Oly system works - I guess I would try a air blower 1st wouldn't be that happy attacking it with much else should I ever get dust

Dave

ndl0071
12th February 2008, 01:35 PM
I don't know very much at all abour sensor cleaning apart from the fact that you need to either be very careful or get a pro to do it, I was rather hoping that I would not need to worry about this as the Oly system cleans (clears dust) as it goes, is it somthing that I should be worried about? I tend to cross these bridges as and when I come to them, I was rather hoping that this paticular bridge is still some distance off:)

theMusicMan
12th February 2008, 02:01 PM
Hi ndl0071, as you can see from previous postings, this isn't something you should be concerned about, for at least several years yet... :)

OlyPaul
12th February 2008, 04:27 PM
Used to have to clean my Canon once a month with Eclipse and swabs but havent used it for over two years since changing to Oly. :)

Barr1e
12th February 2008, 06:02 PM
Interesting subject.

One of the reasons for buying a digital dslr and choosing Olympus was the dust buster - my fingers are almost too large to stick in my mouth let alone the camera!

It does seem however, when the time comes it goes back to Olympus repair centre. I have used them in the recent past and I am most impressed.

Regards. Barr1e

Jim Ford
12th February 2008, 07:45 PM
Sensor cleaning, sensor cleaning? Sorry, you've got me there - can't imagine what you could be referring to!

Jim Ford

ianc
12th February 2008, 07:56 PM
If you want to try sensor cleaning I suggest you buy a Nikon or Canon. You are unlikely to get the chance of having to clean the sensor on an Olympus. I once thought I had some dust on my E1 sensor but when I zoomed in on it in Photoshop it turned out to be a seagull. Over 4 years and I'm still looking for my first dust mark.

Ian C.

OlyFlyer
12th February 2008, 08:21 PM
All this talk about buy Nikon or Canon if you want to learn and practice sensor cleaning is just nonsense.

Apparently, some of you have missed my previous thread, or did not take it seriously.

http://e-group.uk.net/forum/showthread.php?t=642

I suggest all of you with some macro abilities to take a few images with f/22 and bright background. If you had your camera for a while and often changed lenses then I think you better stop this fanboy talk about not being an Oly problem. Maybe not needed to clean as often as other brand, but come on, some of you had your camera for many years, I think you better open your eyes...

Unless of course, you don't care because you only take occasional family pictures, never stop down more than to f/8 and never really go near anything.

As a matter of fact, my brand new (7 days old) E-3 has some signes already. I have not yet decided if I send it in or accept it for a while and wait.

Ellie
12th February 2008, 08:45 PM
I don't think talk of some people needing to practice sensor cleaning is nonsense, there's a heck of a lot of advice online explaining how to do it, but I don't think I've ever seen anybody with an Olympus ask how to tackle dust.

A friend bought a Pentax at Christmas and is already worried about specks they're seeing on their pictures.

I noticed a speck once, last summer. I got a bit worried because I thought the anti-dust system was probably all hype. Turned the camera off and then on again, realised I'd changed the lens without turning off the camera, and the speck vanished. Now I make sure I turn the camera off before changing the lens.

OlyPaul
12th February 2008, 10:44 PM
All this talk about buy Nikon or Canon if you want to learn and practice sensor cleaning is just nonsense.


Unless of course, you don't care because you only take occasional family pictures, never stop down more than to f/8 and never really go near anything.



Well I certainly do not only take only the occasional family snap (visit my web site if you need proof) and quite often use small apertures but bearing in mind that f22 on 4/3rds is equivalent to F45 on full frame and defraction sets in above f11 I try to keep under it other than for macro. And I've also used other cameras.

I also did a test in the field with a Canon 300D amd E-500 a couple of years ago and this was the result starting with a clean sensor on both and a aperture of f22 both at 100%..I think it speaks for itself about the benifit of the oly dust reduction.:)

http://www.pbase.com/paulsilkphotography/image/56208127.jpg

ianc
12th February 2008, 10:47 PM
All this talk about buy Nikon or Canon if you want to learn and practice sensor cleaning is just nonsense.

Apparently, some of you have missed my previous thread, or did not take it seriously.

http://e-group.uk.net/forum/showthread.php?t=642

I suggest all of you with some macro abilities to take a few images with f/22 and bright background. If you had your camera for a while and often changed lenses then I think you better stop this fanboy talk about not being an Oly problem. Maybe not needed to clean as often as other brand, but come on, some of you had your camera for many years, I think you better open your eyes...

Unless of course, you don't care because you only take occasional family pictures, never stop down more than to f/8 and never really go near anything.

As a matter of fact, my brand new (7 days old) E-3 has some signes already. I have not yet decided if I send it in or accept it for a while and wait.

I have to admit I hadn't seen this tread but as you say this isn't a problem unless you go beyond 1:1 which is something most of us will never do. I don't think this is fanboyism as I have often seen dust marks on landscapes from other manufacturers. I'm happy to admit to the limitations of the 4/3 system such as it not matching Canon or Nikon in high ISO performance but even after reading your posts in handling of dust I feel it does out perform both Canon and Nikon by a long way.

Ian C.

OlyFlyer
13th February 2008, 06:41 PM
Well I certainly do not only take only the occasional family snap (visit my web site if you need proof) and quite often use small apertures but bearing in mind that f22 on 4/3rds is equivalent to F45 on full frame and defraction sets in above f11 I try to keep under it other than for macro. And I've also used other cameras.

I also did a test in the field with a Canon 300D amd E-500 a couple of years ago and this was the result starting with a clean sensor on both and a aperture of f22 both at 100%..I think it speaks for itself about the benifit of the oly dust reduction.:)

I am not saying SSWF is not good, but forget about you not having problems after a couple of years of use. Fact is you don't see the problem. Add some extension tube or macro bellows and it all becomes visible.

SSWF is cetainly good, but not a 100% protection. It may be true that others may need to clean their sensors more often, but all that talk about this never an Oly problem is just not true. I have to admit, I have never cleaned my E-500 during the last ~ two years, but right now it is in for a cleaning. As for my brand new E-3, I haven't decided what to do yet, and that is brand new, 7 days in my hands only.

BTW, if the images are 100% crop, than there may be better and worse parts of both image sensors.

OlyFlyer
13th February 2008, 06:44 PM
I have to admit I hadn't seen this tread but as you say this isn't a problem unless you go beyond 1:1 which is something most of us will never do. I don't think this is fanboyism as I have often seen dust marks on landscapes from other manufacturers. I'm happy to admit to the limitations of the 4/3 system such as it not matching Canon or Nikon in high ISO performance but even after reading your posts in handling of dust I feel it does out perform both Canon and Nikon by a long way.

Ian C.Fanboyism is all that talk that CCD cleaning is Nikon Canon business, never Oly. The degree of problem may be different, but come on, each system has it's advantages AND disadvantages, even Oly. SSWF is good, but that does not mean Olympus never needs to be cleaned.

DerekW
13th February 2008, 07:01 PM
According to something I read on the hearsay (ie one of the 4/3rds forums somewhere) the 4/3 rds system has the surface where the dust can settle further away from the sensor than the other systems, this then reduces the chance that a bit of dust would cast a sharp edged shadow.

However remember this is www.hearsay.whatever

OlyFlyer
13th February 2008, 07:58 PM
Yes, that is the SSWF membrane. It is in front of the image sensor and of course, it helps to bring the dust particles out of focus. Unlike in Canon or Nikon and every other camera, where the dust settles directly on the image sensor.

Scapula Memory
14th February 2008, 09:45 AM
So looking at all these replies one could conclude that the problem does exist but due to the nature of the hardware and the effectiveness of the Oly dust system the actual issue is minimized greatly.

I noticed no one mentioned that they had actually cleaned the sensor. Olyflyer makes some interesting remarks and I think I would agree with you.

I thought about this because a few weeks ago I was sitting in my car about to change the lens and I threw my coat from the front seat to the back. Doing this threw up millions of tiny dust specs which normally you would not see, but this time the strong sunlight made them visible. sitting still for a few minutes and they mostly dissapeared but it was enough to stop me from removing the lens.

After reading many views on this on the internet I think I would trust this to a pro and hope that it is something that only needs to be done once in a while.

Jim Ford
14th February 2008, 10:43 AM
I think that most are agreed, including all the reviews I've seen, that dust on the sensor is the 'Achilles Heel' of removable lens/SLR digital cameras, compared to film cameras - and that the Olympus 'E' range of SLRs deals with the problem best. Has anyone see a review that states that any of Olympus' competitors 'does dust' better?

If dust on the sensor is a major worry to you, and you don't want to clean the sensor manually yourself, or have it professionally done for you - an Olympus 'E' series SLR is currently your only choice.

Jim Ford

sapper
14th February 2008, 12:41 PM
Thought I would open this topic up for some opinions on sensor cleaning, so just wondering if anyone has been brave enough to do this themselves and if so what did you use and how was the result?

I have no need at the present and the Oly dust buster looks to be very effective but would be interested to hear of others who have. It looks like something best left to the pros to be honest :confused:

Why? One of the joys of the E series cameras is not having to clean the sensor. I have had an E series from Dec 2005 and never had a problem. Dust/hair on the screen yes, but not on sensor.
Dave.

Scapula Memory
14th February 2008, 12:51 PM
Why? One of the joys of the E series cameras is not having to clean the sensor. I have had an E series from Dec 2005 and never had a problem. Dust/hair on the screen yes, but not on sensor.
Dave.


Dave,

I kind of agree with you but did you read what Olyflyer wrote? His E3 has already shown signs of dust. The thing is my E camera is fine at the moment but I have not ruled out that at some point in the future it may need attention. I was interested to find out if anyone here had cleaned the sensor themselves, and if they had how were the results.

It does look to me like a process that is a "showstopper" A real chance that if you did DIY and messed it up then the camera may not be able to be fixed or that the cost would be more than it`s worth.

Jim Ford
14th February 2008, 02:15 PM
Olyflyer's main posting about dust is here:

http://tinyurl.com/yr5bb4

As you can see he had problems with a 35mm lens with 245mm extension - yes, almost 1/4 meter extension!

I would suggest that this is way, way out of the range of 99.99% of users requirements.

I illustrated in the same thread why I think dust spots are shown up in Olyflyer's setup. The greater the lens extension, the more parallel the light rays become and the sharper any detritus on the 'sensor' becomes.

Jim Ford

j.baker
14th February 2008, 03:12 PM
I have tried to clean the mirror (just the front facing part) and the focus screen. I have spent a substantial amount of month on cleaning tools and products. In every case, I made the problem worse. I now stick to lens cleaning only.

I have not experienced any problems with dust on my images. Hot pixels yes, but that is another forum discussion. :D

OlyFlyer
14th February 2008, 10:23 PM
Olyflyer's main posting about dust is here:

http://tinyurl.com/yr5bb4

As you can see he had problems with a 35mm lens with 245mm extension - yes, almost 1/4 meter extension!

I would suggest that this is way, way out of the range of 99.99% of users requirements.

I illustrated in the same thread why I think dust spots are shown up in Olyflyer's setup. The greater the lens extension, the more parallel the light rays become and the sharper any detritus on the 'sensor' becomes.

Jim FordJim, that is a bit simplified. My problem was actually a whole lot more than the long extension. It showed up there the first time, that is true, but I immediately made other tests, using other lenses, including the ED50/f2 with ONLY the EX-41 (my modified EX-25), and as a matter of fact even without any extension. The speck showed up in every situation, but whithout extension only at f/22, and quite blurred. That's why I decided to send the camera in for service. Also, Oly Sweden has seen the images (more than the ones I have shown here) and the guy said he has never seen anything like that before, he suggested to send in the camera as well.

My conclusion is that either the SSWF stopped functioning, or the actual dust collector is used up after almost two years of intense use and lens changing.

The SSWF was indeed good during all this time, I have taken many macro images even before. What I mean is that the dust problem can not be ignored just because we have SSWF. We may be better off than other brand, but definitely not 100% protected, and definitely not forever. All the dust the SSWF shakes off is collected at the bottom. So when the collector is no longer efficient that is the end of life of SSWF. In my case it seems about two years for my E-500.

Of course, some people will never notice that, since it is most clearly visible at very high magnifications and very small aperture.

Solar
14th February 2008, 11:49 PM
Here is a good comparison between Oly, Can, Pen, Sony cameras in regards to dustbusting, although it is a little dated.

FYI, its commonly held true that Oly still has the BEST dust removal.

http://pixinfo.com/en/articles/ccd-dust-removal/

Zuiko
15th February 2008, 12:22 AM
just out of interest, in case the worst should happen, does anyone have an idea of the cost and turnaround time for Olympus to clean the sensor and replace the sticky capture strips?

OlyFlyer
6th March 2008, 11:28 AM
just out of interest, in case the worst should happen, does anyone have an idea of the cost and turnaround time for Olympus to clean the sensor and replace the sticky capture strips? My E-500 was cleaned free of charge and the time it took was about two weeks. The camera was still under warranty, but I don't know how much they would have charged if I had to pay.

I think the turnaround time is the same for all Europe, maximum 21 days.

Steve Lane
6th March 2008, 12:00 PM
I have only ever noticed a couple of specs on my E-1 sensor almost a year ago, which coincided with changing lens in a hot and dusty location in Greece. Restarted the camera and the SSWF sorted it out. Never seen any before or after.

All in all I am very impressed with SSWF deployment in the E-System. I use a Canon 10D at work for product and some portrait photography. Changing lenses has been fairly minimal and usually carried out indoors in controlled enviroments. I have had to swab the sensor several times due to dust and other debis being present in the images. I am hoping at some point to 'persuade' the head honcho to upgrade to the E-system for this and other reasons.

After a day with the 10D, I am always glad to return to my E-1!

Nivek
6th March 2008, 06:04 PM
Just make sure your battery is fully charged and buy yourself a Giottos Rocket although I think other manufacturers sell them as well. I have cleaned my 501 a couple of times and they are brilliant