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Archive 2012 · D800 AF repair: What repair was done, and what results?
  
 
patriot
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p.1 #1 · D800 AF repair: What repair was done, and what results?


Now that we have a steady stream of repairs coming back, it might be useful to track what Nikon did, where they did it, what were the results, and how many trips back in did it take. So far, satisfactory results seem to be hit or miss, so perhaps we can find some pattern by examining what Nikon is doing.

Mine just returned from its first trip to Melville, NY. Classified as a B1 repair, invoice says SC 201759.

Result: Left AF issues seems resolved. However, camera body appears to have a significant FF, requiring +20 on a perfect 70-200 II VR that required no fine tuning on my D700, or the D800 pre-repair. It is now not tack sharp, as it had been on the D800 pre-repair. Two new lenses, the 85 and 50 1.8 G's, required no tuning on the D700 or D800 pre-repair, now need +12 and +15. A 24-70, which has been a problem lens, now needs +12, and has also been serviced.

Next steps and Nikon CS: Proving to be useless. It is clear from an email exchange that they are unable to answer or escalate beyond their off-shore call center. Responses to requests are canned and unrelated to requests.



Aug 02, 2012 at 11:32 AM
andy.
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p.1 #2 · D800 AF repair: What repair was done, and what results?


Unfortunately, you'll probably have to send it in again. My experience with Nikon repair has been that it usually takes 2 trips to get anything fixed properly.

However, AF fine-tune is there for a reason, and as long as you can tune within range, I don't see a problem. My D800 requires a -8 default setting. I would suggest you try a + default setting and see how it affects your focus. My individual tuning required -20, but is fine at -8 default. You'll have to delete all saved lens settings as they override the default.



Aug 02, 2012 at 09:07 PM
okafoja
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p.1 #3 · D800 AF repair: What repair was done, and what results?


patriot wrote:
Now that we have a steady stream of repairs coming back, it might be useful to track what Nikon did, where they did it, what were the results, and how many trips back in did it take. So far, satisfactory results seem to be hit or miss, so perhaps we can find some pattern by examining what Nikon is doing.

Mine just returned from its first trip to Melville, NY. Classified as a B1 repair, invoice says SC 201759.

Result: Left AF issues seems resolved. However, camera body appears to have a significant FF, requiring +20 on a perfect 70-200 II VR
...Show more

Mine came back with almost same result as yours. I sent it back again since I don't have time nor believe in AF adjustment. It came back the second time a lot better. All my lenses work now except my 50/1.8g which maybe front focusing a little. I only see it on wide open shots so I am not worried.



Aug 02, 2012 at 09:10 PM
snapsy
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p.1 #4 · D800 AF repair: What repair was done, and what results?


Mine arrives back from El Segundo tomorrow. I plan to report my findings in a new video. Here was my original video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lkP1bGRQMdM&hd=1


Aug 02, 2012 at 09:23 PM
EL_PIC
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p.1 #5 · D800 AF repair: What repair was done, and what results?


If you did Micro AF adjustment 10 times you would prob get at least 5 differ settings
regardless of any pre or post repair.
Food for Thought ...



Aug 02, 2012 at 09:26 PM
patriot
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p.1 #6 · D800 AF repair: What repair was done, and what results?


EL_PIC wrote:
If you did Micro AF adjustment 10 times you would prob get at least 5 differ settings
regardless of any pre or post repair.
Food for Thought ...



Something to that effect posted on DP Review ...glanced at it due to time, but from what I could gather, something about how AF fine tuning numbers are applied yields different results. I'll have to read more carefully.

I've never been one to do much testing. In this case I'm doing far more than ever. One thing I can say, using Lensalign, is that the results are consistent. I've tested multiple times, including moving the set up so I have to re-measure and align. Then, taking the camera outside and trying different real world subjects, I can see where the tuning seems to be consistent with what Lensalign indicates. In other words, +18 and +20 on my 70-200 yield noticeable differences on flowers, trees, as they do on Lensalign.




Aug 02, 2012 at 10:29 PM
patriot
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p.1 #7 · D800 AF repair: What repair was done, and what results?


andy. wrote:
Unfortunately, you'll probably have to send it in again. My experience with Nikon repair has been that it usually takes 2 trips to get anything fixed properly.

However, AF fine-tune is there for a reason, and as long as you can tune within range, I don't see a problem. My D800 requires a -8 default setting. I would suggest you try a + default setting and see how it affects your focus. My individual tuning required -20, but is fine at -8 default. You'll have to delete all saved lens settings as they override the default.


I have made contact in Melville, so I'm starting to have some hope that if I send it back in it will get a better service.

I'm going to use it a real wold situation for me this weekend: low light theater. I'll be at f2.8 a lot, and at the long end of the 70-200. I use almost all AF points vs. focus and recompose. I've been doing this long enough, with many set ups, including the D800, that I'll be able to tell how it is working post-repair. This kind of shooting by default is a shallow DOF, so any FF or BF are significant.



Aug 02, 2012 at 10:36 PM
mshi
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p.1 #8 · D800 AF repair: What repair was done, and what results?


patriot wrote:
Result: Left AF issues seems resolved. However, camera body appears to have a significant FF, requiring +20 on a perfect 70-200 II VR that required no fine tuning on my D700, or the D800 pre-repair. It is now not tack sharp, as it had been on the D800 pre-repair.


Now your experience basically confirms my suspicion that the left AF issue is entirely due to some incorrect internal lookup table that Nikon claims. If it were, simply flushing the table with correct values would solve all the problems. The problem could be much larger than what we have been told.



Aug 02, 2012 at 10:49 PM
Smridevan
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p.1 #9 · D800 AF repair: What repair was done, and what results?


That's very worrisome indeed. If it were a simple software fix, I'm sure it would not affect other focusing points or lens calibration when they fix it. Might be some mechanical flaw in the camera that Nikon is hiding from us.


Aug 02, 2012 at 11:50 PM
patriot
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p.1 #10 · D800 AF repair: What repair was done, and what results?


Smridevan wrote:
That's very worrisome indeed. If it were a simple software fix, I'm sure it would not affect other focusing points or lens calibration when they fix it. Might be some mechanical flaw in the camera that Nikon is hiding from us.


Which is why I'm curious about what other report on repaired D800's. From what I can gather, here and more so on DP Review, of those reporting the AF fine tune numbers, the trend seems to be high negative adjustments. Not so many to the positive side.

I'm no engineer, techie, or even much of a photographer ... just a hobbyiest. So I could be way off on this. It just seems to me that if this is just a firmware recalibration, and the result post-repair is significantly different AF fine tune values for BF or FF on the same lenses vs. pre-repair, there must me a mechanical component to the "fix" that was performed on these units.

Is it possible that a hardware adjustment in one direction or the other (BF vs. FF) can be "close enough for government work" to "fix" this quickly ... while a more labor intensive 51 point re-calibration may be the "correct" fix, PLUS some mechanical adjustments if needed? So if you send it in a few times, they eventually do the more costly fix?




Aug 03, 2012 at 12:07 AM
 

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M635_Guy
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p.1 #11 · D800 AF repair: What repair was done, and what results?


mshi wrote:
Now your experience basically confirms my suspicion that the left AF issue is entirely due to some incorrect internal lookup table that Nikon claims. If it were, simply flushing the table with correct values would solve all the problems. The problem could be much larger than what we have been told.


I'm not sure it works the way you think it does. There is going to be sample variation. My understanding is each camera is individually calibrated and that the left focus issue has to do with some kind of problem with the equipment "programming" the AF system on the affected cameras.

I may be wrong or misinformed, but my $0.02.



Aug 03, 2012 at 04:16 AM
Smridevan
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p.1 #12 · D800 AF repair: What repair was done, and what results?


Looks like you're not the only one with this crappy Nikon D800 service experience:

http://mansurovs.com/anatomy-of-a-nikon-d800-fix



Aug 03, 2012 at 04:22 AM
CanonGolfGuy
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p.1 #13 · D800 AF repair: What repair was done, and what results?


I think the most troublesome thing in this ordeal is Nikon not saying anything. Is that because they don't know what is wrong? Or because they don't want to admit something is wrong?


Aug 03, 2012 at 04:36 AM
patriot
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p.1 #14 · D800 AF repair: What repair was done, and what results?


CanonGolfGuy wrote:
I think the most troublesome thing in this ordeal is Nikon not saying anything. Is that because they don't know what is wrong? Or because they don't want to admit something is wrong?


Well, the official silence would suggest that don't want to admit to anything. The reports of what appears to be an unreasonably high percentage of units returning from repair either not fixed, or worse, suggests one or all of the following:

1). Nikon does not have a definitive fix.
2). Nikon has a fix, but has not yet deployed that fix to all service centers, trained all of their technicians, etc.
3). Nikon has a fix, but because they don't want to acknowledge the issue, has NOT distributed it to their service centers (no "paper trail").
4). Nikon has a fix, but due to time and or cost, tries a "down and dirty" more simple fix first, to clear the backlog of units in for repair. Perhaps this is the "B1" (minor parts) repair?
5). The fix requires parts needed for assemble of new units, and Nikon, in order to keep up with demand, has made a decision to push parts to manufacturing vs. service centers. Only "B2" (major parts) are getting the complete fix?

If we start to see a steady stream of new units defect free, then that would suggest Nikon has identified and solved the problem at that end. Hopefully after that we can expect to see a more solid repair success rate.

I'm hoping more people report on their repair with the details and results so that perhaps a pattern can be determined. I think it could also help those waiting to send theirs in to make a determination of when to do that.



Aug 03, 2012 at 10:55 AM
patriot
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p.1 #15 · D800 AF repair: What repair was done, and what results?


Smridevan wrote:
Looks like you're not the only one with this crappy Nikon D800 service experience:

http://mansurovs.com/anatomy-of-a-nikon-d800-fix


Great link and a good read. I'm fortunate because mine went the same place around the same time, and at least the left to right AF's seem consistent. But I also need very high AF tuning now, such as +20 on a lens that needed 0 on this body pre-repair and on a D700. If that lens needed a + 10 pre-repair I would not be as concerned.

I can use it, but I'm not comfortable with the situation. If the body is off so much that it needs a +20, the maximum amount I can tune it, what happens if I get a lens that needs +5? Or +2? Can't do it. By my way of thinking, the manufacturing tolerances should be much tighter, with the body as close to 0 as possible to allow for lens adjustments. From reading and talking to others, many if not most report very low AF adjustments in new bodies. But those repaired seem to universally need very high, if not the maximum, tuning numbers.

Nikon Service is telling me a +20 is perfectly fine. But on just the body?






Aug 03, 2012 at 11:11 AM
Smridevan
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p.1 #16 · D800 AF repair: What repair was done, and what results?


patriot wrote:
If we start to see a steady stream of new units defect free, then that would suggest Nikon has identified and solved the problem at that end. Hopefully after that we can expect to see a more solid repair success


That would be a good indicator that Nikon has discovered a fix if all their new units do not have this problem. I'm watching this closely:

http://www.amazon.com/Amazon-delivery-Only-people-purchased/forum/Fx2MCFOKA9GJ1HG/Tx21XQKJ4UEQQ9H/1/ref=cm_cd_pg_oldest?_encoding=UTF8&asin=B0076AYNXM&cdItems=25&cdSort=newest&store=generic





Aug 03, 2012 at 01:39 PM
CanonGolfGuy
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p.1 #17 · D800 AF repair: What repair was done, and what results?


Smridevan wrote:
That would be a good indicator that Nikon has discovered a fix if all their new units do not have this problem. I'm watching this closely:

http://www.amazon.com/Amazon-delivery-Only-people-purchased/forum/Fx2MCFOKA9GJ1HG/Tx21XQKJ4UEQQ9H/1/ref=cm_cd_pg_oldest?_encoding=UTF8&asin=B0076AYNXM&cdItems=25&cdSort=newest&store=generic



Good grief. It seems like there are more bad ones out there than good ones.. How is the QC that inconsistent?



Aug 03, 2012 at 02:05 PM
gx24
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p.1 #18 · D800 AF repair: What repair was done, and what results?


Receved new d800 today, the af system works accurately with every single point


Aug 03, 2012 at 02:36 PM
Smridevan
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p.1 #19 · D800 AF repair: What repair was done, and what results?


gx24 wrote:
Receved new d800 today, the af system works accurately with every single point


Can you tell us the first four serial number on your unit? Thanks.

From what I've seen, the affected cameras have serial numbers between 3001xxx to 3033xxx. looks like the initial batch was fine and then something happened.



Aug 03, 2012 at 02:45 PM
gx24
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p.1 #20 · D800 AF repair: What repair was done, and what results?


6043xxx


Aug 03, 2012 at 03:20 PM
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