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Archive 2012 · Dirty sensor or stuck pixel?
  
 
jzucker
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · Dirty sensor or stuck pixel?


Using a 3x led loupe I don't see any dirt in the circled areas.

I've tried a rocket-blower and compressed air and the positions of the "dirt" don't change.









Feb 22, 2012 at 03:42 PM
edwardkaraa
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · Dirty sensor or stuck pixel?


Dirty sensor. A wet cleaning will take care of that.


Feb 22, 2012 at 03:46 PM
jotdeh
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · Dirty sensor or stuck pixel?


The spots are pretty large (several pixels), and of different size, and round - I am 100% certain this is not a stuck pixel problem. Remember the picture on the sensor is flipped, so you should look at the bottom right corner of the sensor.


Feb 22, 2012 at 03:48 PM
jzucker
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · Dirty sensor or stuck pixel?


Thanks!


Feb 22, 2012 at 03:49 PM
AhamB
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · Dirty sensor or stuck pixel?


After wet cleaning, try taking a picture of your computer screen with a completely white background, or a blue sky or something like that. Use the smallest possible aperture (f/22 or so). Focus at infinity when shooting your computer screen and focus at minimum focus distance when shooting the sky. This way you'll be able to see any speck of dust that's on the sensor.

By the way, those particles will have "fused" to the sensor because they probably were a bit oily or sticky. That's why they don't go away with your rocket blower/compressed air.



Feb 22, 2012 at 03:52 PM
davidearls
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · Dirty sensor or stuck pixel?


I've found the LensPen SensorCleans to do a better job of removing this sort of dust than wet cleanings - I decided that wet cleaning was what originally stuck the dust to the sensor in the first place -


Feb 22, 2012 at 03:55 PM
jzucker
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · Dirty sensor or stuck pixel?


I've got so many of these spots I'm wondering if I should have it professionally cleaned and then "maintain" it with periodic wet cleanings. The local shop charges $100 for a cleaning. That seems a bit high to me. What's the going rate?


Feb 22, 2012 at 04:01 PM
mco_970
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · Dirty sensor or stuck pixel?


That seems very high. It's not a big deal to clean a sensor, might as well DIY and keep the difference in price.

ps. I looked at your EXIF. Since it's 5D2, those could well be some little grease spots on the sensor. Those won't blow off, but they swipe off fairly easily during wet cleaning. My brand new 5D2 came with one of those.



Feb 22, 2012 at 05:13 PM
jzucker
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · Dirty sensor or stuck pixel?


mco_970 wrote:
That seems very high. It's not a big deal to clean a sensor, might as well DIY and keep the difference in price.

ps. I looked at your EXIF. Since it's 5D2, those could well be some little grease spots on the sensor. Those won't blow off, but they swipe off fairly easily during wet cleaning. My brand new 5D2 came with one of those.


thanks. That makes sense. How many cleaning cycles does it take to get grease spots off?



Feb 22, 2012 at 05:42 PM
jzucker
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p.1 #10 · p.1 #10 · Dirty sensor or stuck pixel?


just got off the phone with canon. They said they almost never see oil spots on the 5d and he was suspicious that the problem was something more insidious since i don't see any dust or spots with the 3x illuminated loupe. He recommended sending it to canon in NJ. Argh...


Feb 22, 2012 at 06:34 PM
 

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mco_970
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p.1 #11 · p.1 #11 · Dirty sensor or stuck pixel?


Uh-huh, no oil spots on 5D (laughing at Canon, not you - but what else are they gonna say). Mine definitely had a grease spot right out of the box. They are not hard to clean off - and you can def. tell when it's a grease spot because the first time you swipe it leaves a trail. Can't remember if it took one extra swipe or two (w/ a clean pad each time), but it did not require any scrubbing.

I use the Copperhill kit, so the price of the cleaning pad and drops are way less than a dollar each.

If your issue is not a dirty sensor, it's not going to matter if you clean it (or have the shop clean it). If the issue is a dirty sensor, you will see an improvement right away. Def. worth a try.

During shipping to and from Canon, more crap can come loose and fall on your sensor and stick to it so even if it's meticulously clean when they ship it back, it very well may be dirty again by the time you receive it.



Feb 22, 2012 at 06:56 PM
jzucker
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p.1 #12 · p.1 #12 · Dirty sensor or stuck pixel?


Thanks. I have the copperhill stuff but i'm hesitant to use their pads because I've read that they sometimes are contaminated during packing. Maybe I'll give it a shot tonight and if I can't get it clean, I'll ship it to canon tomorrow.

Unfortunately, my backup is an Xsi and the live view doesn't seem to auto-adjust to ambient light in manual mode (in preparation for studio flash). I don't think my remote works with it either. Maybe it's time to get a 7d as a backup?

mco_970 wrote:
Uh-huh, no oil spots on 5D (laughing at Canon, not you - but what else are they gonna say). Mine definitely had a grease spot right out of the box. They are not hard to clean off - and you can def. tell when it's a grease spot because the first time you swipe it leaves a trail. Can't remember if it took one extra swipe or two (w/ a clean pad each time), but it did not require any scrubbing.

I use the Copperhill kit, so the price of the cleaning pad and drops are way less than a
...Show more



Feb 22, 2012 at 07:11 PM
Chris S.
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p.1 #13 · p.1 #13 · Dirty sensor or stuck pixel?


jzucker wrote:

(a Canon telephone representative). . .was suspicious that the problem was something more insidious since i don't see any dust or spots with the 3x illuminated loupe. He recommended sending it to canon in NJ. Argh...


Horsefeathers! I find that a 3x lighted sensor loupe does not magnify sufficiently to let me see all the small dust on the sensor, so I clean sensors under a low-powered stereomicroscope (7x-30x). According to the EXIF data, the image you posted was shot at f/22, and small apertures like that are really effective at showing small sensor dust.

jzucker wrote:
I have the copperhill stuff but i'm hesitant to use their pads because I've read that they sometimes are contaminated during packing. Maybe I'll give it a shot tonight and if I can't get it clean, I'll ship it to canon tomorrow.


I haven't read what you've read, but unless the alleged level of contamination is incredibly high, it won't matter. A sensor, once used a bit in the real world, is likely to be orders of magnitude more "contaminated" than any of the products potentially used to clean it.

Cleaning a sensor can be a bit tricky the first time, but isn't hard at all after you get the hang of it, and is definitely worth being able to do. One thing I'd be ready for is that a sensor's first cleaning often requires 5 or 6 swabs, and may at first look worse than when you started. Oil/grease from around the sensor can get wiped onto the sensor, and it takes a few clean swabs to get it off. For later cleanings, this becomes less and less of a problem.



Feb 22, 2012 at 07:34 PM
jzucker
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p.1 #14 · p.1 #14 · Dirty sensor or stuck pixel?


thanks folks. Since the sensor has never been cleaned, would you advise me to do 3-4 cleanings before checking for results? How long should I wait between cleanings if I'm doing a sequence?


Feb 22, 2012 at 07:41 PM
sjgh
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p.1 #15 · p.1 #15 · Dirty sensor or stuck pixel?


Just do it!! You have the right stuff, you really can't go wrong. Do a cleaning, check, reclean if needed till you are satisfied. Not a big deal-in a few months you'll be having a chuckle at your on expense when reread your comments and how cautious you were.


Feb 22, 2012 at 07:49 PM
AhamB
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p.1 #16 · p.1 #16 · Dirty sensor or stuck pixel?


I have only done a wet cleaning of my 5D once and have been able to keep all the major dust spots off just with a rocket blower. Note that the pollen from flowers (such as the lily in your picture) is sticky and if you get it on your sensor you'll definitely want to do wet cleaning. If it's just plain old dust, you won't have to do wet cleanings very often (if you don't live in a very dry and dusty environment).


Feb 22, 2012 at 07:51 PM
jzucker
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p.1 #17 · p.1 #17 · Dirty sensor or stuck pixel?


Thanks everyone!


Feb 22, 2012 at 07:52 PM
jzucker
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p.1 #18 · p.1 #18 · Dirty sensor or stuck pixel?


well, after 3 cleanings there are more dust spots than ever, the big one at the top is still there and now there are fibers from the copper hill pec pads.


Feb 23, 2012 at 12:57 AM
jzucker
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p.1 #19 · p.1 #19 · Dirty sensor or stuck pixel?


I did manage to move the big spec from the center of the picture to the side but in doing so, I managed to get a helluva lot more dust on the sensor. I think with the dry cleveland air, the static electricity is literally a dust magnet. It probably works a lot better in a warmer, more humid environment.

I think also that since I shoot a lot in live-view mode, I get more dust than normal.



Feb 23, 2012 at 02:44 AM
mco_970
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p.1 #20 · p.1 #20 · Dirty sensor or stuck pixel?


I challenge you to a 'humidity-off'. (High desert SW here)

If you got the sticky stuff loose from the sensor, blow the rest of it off w/ a rocket blower. Or use a soft, clean, dry artists brush - static charge it with air. Just don't drag the brush in the oil on the side where the shutter mechanism has been lubed and get more of on the sensor...



Feb 23, 2012 at 03:53 AM
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