Digital SLRs and fungus contamination?

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Mario Guimaraes, Sep 27, 2004.

  1. Hello!

    I am considering to buy a Nikon D70, but will be moving to a very
    hot and humid place in the near future, then came the doubt about how
    DSLRs deal with fungus and mildew contamination.
    On film cameras all optical surfaces are reasonably resistant to
    cleaning, but I wonder how CCDs react to wiping? Or perhaps there are
    special procedures for CCD cleaning?
    I would really apreciate any thoughts on this, and I believe this
    info would be helpful to other people living in tropical/sub-tropical
    countries...
    Thanks,

    Mario.


    PS.: Regarding preventative measures such as silica gel, they were not
    enough to prevent contamination. I used to live in very humid places and
    despite all care had to run all my gear to a thorough cleaning at least
    every two years!
     
    Mario Guimaraes, Sep 27, 2004
    #1
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  2. Mario Guimaraes

    Jer Guest

    Mario Guimaraes wrote:

    > Hello!
    >
    > I am considering to buy a Nikon D70, but will be moving to a very
    > hot and humid place in the near future, then came the doubt about how
    > DSLRs deal with fungus and mildew contamination.
    > On film cameras all optical surfaces are reasonably resistant to
    > cleaning, but I wonder how CCDs react to wiping? Or perhaps there are
    > special procedures for CCD cleaning?
    > I would really apreciate any thoughts on this, and I believe this
    > info would be helpful to other people living in tropical/sub-tropical
    > countries...
    > Thanks,
    >
    > Mario.
    >
    >
    > PS.: Regarding preventative measures such as silica gel, they were not
    > enough to prevent contamination. I used to live in very humid places and
    > despite all care had to run all my gear to a thorough cleaning at least
    > every two years!
    >
    >


    During my forays in more tropical climates, I imagine DSLRs will have
    the same problem as FSLRs - frequent cleaning. Canned air helps
    dislodge loose materials (spores), but not all. Also, I would NEVER
    consider wiping across a sensor, especially for the purpose of removing
    surface contamination. Not exactly the same thing, but there's one
    location in S. Costa Rica with a PC on a generator. PC replacements are
    an annual affair due to mold taking root on all the internal components.
    In the early days, floppy disks had a MTBF of six months. A lot of
    this was likely due to the internal heat, and a DSLR won't suffer *that*
    much.

    --
    jer email reply - I am not a 'ten'
    "If one dives and returns to the surface inarticulate with amazement and
    with a deep realisation of the marvel of what he has seen and where he
    has been, then he deserves to go again and again. If he is unmoved or
    dissappointed, then there remains for him on earth only a longer or
    shorter period of waiting for death." --William Beebe, "Half Mile Down"
     
    Jer, Sep 28, 2004
    #2
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  3. "Jer" <> wrote in message
    news:cja6ri$...

    > During my forays in more tropical climates, I imagine DSLRs will have
    > the same problem as FSLRs - frequent cleaning. Canned air helps
    > dislodge loose materials (spores), but not all. Also, I would NEVER
    > consider wiping across a sensor, especially for the purpose of removing
    > surface contamination.



    Sensor cleaning is a fact of life of owning a dSLR. It is easily
    accomplished using methyl alcohol (Eclipse) and lint-free pads (Pec-Pads)
    Look at http://tinyurl.com/62sbt . There's a nice step-by-step illustration
    of sensor cleaning of a dSLR at http://www.pbase.com/image/15473243 .

    Canned air OTOH is an extremely BAD idea for dSLRs since the propellent
    (usually liquid freon or something similar) will definitely not do your
    sensor any good. Best way to initially address the sensor in a dSLR that
    shows "dust-bunnies" in its images (usually sky) is a hand blower such as
    the Giotto Rocket (no-brush-blowers!)

    HMc
     
    Howard McCollister, Sep 28, 2004
    #3
  4. Mario Guimaraes

    Jer Guest

    Howard McCollister wrote:
    > "Jer" <> wrote in message
    > news:cja6ri$...
    >
    >
    >>During my forays in more tropical climates, I imagine DSLRs will have
    >>the same problem as FSLRs - frequent cleaning. Canned air helps
    >>dislodge loose materials (spores), but not all. Also, I would NEVER
    >>consider wiping across a sensor, especially for the purpose of removing
    >>surface contamination.

    >
    >
    >
    > Sensor cleaning is a fact of life of owning a dSLR. It is easily
    > accomplished using methyl alcohol (Eclipse) and lint-free pads (Pec-Pads)
    > Look at http://tinyurl.com/62sbt . There's a nice step-by-step illustration
    > of sensor cleaning of a dSLR at http://www.pbase.com/image/15473243 .
    >
    > Canned air OTOH is an extremely BAD idea for dSLRs since the propellent
    > (usually liquid freon or something similar) will definitely not do your
    > sensor any good. Best way to initially address the sensor in a dSLR that
    > shows "dust-bunnies" in its images (usually sky) is a hand blower such as
    > the Giotto Rocket (no-brush-blowers!)
    >
    > HMc
    >
    >
    >



    I love it when I leave smarter than when I arrived. Thanks. I suppose
    Mario and I will eventually learn if this info keeps the spores out.

    --
    jer email reply - I am not a 'ten'
     
    Jer, Sep 28, 2004
    #4
  5. Thanks a lot for the info!

    Cheers,

    Mario.



    Jer <> wrote in news:cjap0e$:

    > Howard McCollister wrote:
    >> "Jer" <> wrote in message
    >> news:cja6ri$...
    >>
    >>
    >>>During my forays in more tropical climates, I imagine DSLRs will have
    >>>the same problem as FSLRs - frequent cleaning. Canned air helps
    >>>dislodge loose materials (spores), but not all. Also, I would NEVER
    >>>consider wiping across a sensor, especially for the purpose of
    >>>removing surface contamination.

    >>
    >>
    >>
    >> Sensor cleaning is a fact of life of owning a dSLR. It is easily
    >> accomplished using methyl alcohol (Eclipse) and lint-free pads
    >> (Pec-Pads) Look at http://tinyurl.com/62sbt . There's a nice
    >> step-by-step illustration of sensor cleaning of a dSLR at
    >> http://www.pbase.com/image/15473243 .
    >>
    >> Canned air OTOH is an extremely BAD idea for dSLRs since the
    >> propellent (usually liquid freon or something similar) will
    >> definitely not do your sensor any good. Best way to initially address
    >> the sensor in a dSLR that shows "dust-bunnies" in its images (usually
    >> sky) is a hand blower such as the Giotto Rocket (no-brush-blowers!)
    >>
    >> HMc
    >>
    >>
    >>

    >
    >
    > I love it when I leave smarter than when I arrived. Thanks. I
    > suppose Mario and I will eventually learn if this info keeps the
    > spores out.
    >
     
    Mario Guimaraes, Sep 28, 2004
    #5
  6. Mario Guimaraes

    Clyde Torres Guest

    "Mario Guimaraes" <> wrote in message
    news:Xns957180AE76E7marioguimaatbrunelac@194.117.143.38...
    > Hello!
    >
    > I am considering to buy a Nikon D70, but will be moving to a very
    > hot and humid place in the near future, then came the doubt about how
    > DSLRs deal with fungus and mildew contamination.
    > On film cameras all optical surfaces are reasonably resistant to
    > cleaning, but I wonder how CCDs react to wiping? Or perhaps there are
    > special procedures for CCD cleaning?
    > I would really apreciate any thoughts on this, and I believe this
    > info would be helpful to other people living in tropical/sub-tropical
    > countries...
    > Thanks,
    >
    > Mario.
    >
    >
    > PS.: Regarding preventative measures such as silica gel, they were not
    > enough to prevent contamination. I used to live in very humid places and
    > despite all care had to run all my gear to a thorough cleaning at least
    > every two years!


    Mario,

    I live in a hot and humid place called Florida. Of course the camera spends
    most of its time in air conditioned quarters, while I go out and beat the
    bushes for pesos. I haven't had any problems yet, but I did notice that the
    Canon D20 has an operating limit of 85% relative humidity per the following
    link:

    http://www.adorama.com/ICA20DK1.html

    I haven't seen that limit on the Nikon D70 but that doesn't mean it doesn't
    exist.

    Clyde Torres
    "Hmm, beating the bushes for pesos sounds like Halliburton"
     
    Clyde Torres, Sep 29, 2004
    #6
  7. Mario Guimaraes

    Ken Tough Guest

    Mario Guimaraes <> wrote:

    >PS.: Regarding preventative measures such as silica gel, they were not
    >enough to prevent contamination. I used to live in very humid places and
    >despite all care had to run all my gear to a thorough cleaning at least
    >every two years!


    I was disturbed to see one of my old zooms developed a fungus
    between some of the internal elements; just a big of fogging
    you could only see in direct light. Silica gel won't prevent
    everything, but I'd sure keep any new stuff as cool and dry
    as possible..

    --
    Ken Tough
     
    Ken Tough, Sep 29, 2004
    #7
  8. "Jer" <> wrote in message
    news:cjap0e$...
    > Howard McCollister wrote:
    > >
    > >
    > > Sensor cleaning is a fact of life of owning a dSLR. It is easily
    > > accomplished using methyl alcohol (Eclipse) and lint-free pads

    (Pec-Pads)
    > > Look at http://tinyurl.com/62sbt . There's a nice step-by-step

    illustration
    > > of sensor cleaning of a dSLR at http://www.pbase.com/image/15473243 .
    > >
    > > Canned air OTOH is an extremely BAD idea for dSLRs since the propellent
    > > (usually liquid freon or something similar) will definitely not do your
    > > sensor any good. Best way to initially address the sensor in a dSLR that
    > > shows "dust-bunnies" in its images (usually sky) is a hand blower such

    as
    > > the Giotto Rocket (no-brush-blowers!)
    > >
    > > HMc
    > >
    > >
    > >

    >
    >
    > I love it when I leave smarter than when I arrived. Thanks. I suppose
    > Mario and I will eventually learn if this info keeps the spores out.
    >


    Humid environments are a problem more for lenses than for cameras. Fungus
    growth in lenses in not uncommon and will ruin a lens. Having spent a fair
    amount of time in Dominican Republic and Haiti over the years
    http://www.pbase.com/hmac/haiti__february_2004 , my approach has been to
    store camera and lenses in an airtight Pelican case with a few bags of
    silica gel. During the day, I carry the stuff in a LowePro Computrekker,
    then at the end of the day, I blow out the camera with a Giotto Rocket and
    seal the stuff back up in the Pelican. Works for me.

    HMc
     
    Howard McCollister, Sep 29, 2004
    #8
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