DSLR Sensor Cleaning

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At least once a year you should bring in your DSLR to have the imaging sensor cleaned.

General cleaning & maintenance includes:

The technician starts by checking the functions of the camera and attached lens.  Before we start cleaning, we take a photo of the sensor to see where the dust and debris on the sensor is (image taken at f/22).

Then the cleaning process starts by externally cleaning the camera body and lens, this way we don’t introduce any new dust or debris.  We then clean the inside of the mirror box, which consists of the mirror box, mirror, focusing screen and sensor.

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Canon 7D – Cannot communicate with battery error

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Canon EOS 7D “Cannot communicate with battery” error
The Canon 7D is an excellent camera and a true work horse. However, this camera is known to have problems which show up as an Error 30, 40 or 80. Since we specialize in camera repair, we see all sorts of problems. Recently, we received a 7D for repair, which was giving the “Cannot communicate with battery” error. Since we have the ability to plug the camera into the computer and download the cameras self diagnostics, we were able to pinpoint the problems, which were: the camera would not recognize the battery and would intermittently lock up, the self cleaning sensor function was also failing, all pointed to a problem with the lower PCB (printed circuit board). Now that we have identified the location of the problems, our lead repair technician Dave, disassembled the camera and found the following issues: loose ground screws and connectors going to the lower board, and the main flex connector between the lower PCB and main board had corrosion/tarnish on two of the points. After he cleaned all the switches, contact points, re-sealed the screws so they wouldn’t back out we re-programed the camera shutter through the specialized software the camera works flawlessly. In this situation, the cost to disassemble the camera completely, clean, adjust and reprogram the camera runs $249 in labor, which includes a 1-year warranty.

Canon 7D Testimony
Recently, we had a customer bring in a 7D for a standard sensor cleaning. The camera was used to shoot sports at Jesuit High School and used a lot, but very well cared for… I couldn’t believe that the cameras shutter actuation count was 256,868!!! The customer wanted to know if he should replace the shutter since the count was so high? In this situation, because the camera was still functioning fine, we recommended that he continue to use the camera until it starts to fail. We have replaced 7D shutters, all of which had lower shutter counts than this one. When the time comes to replace his shutter, the technician will disassemble the camera completely, replace the shutter (part cost $110), clean the camera throughout, clean the sensor and check all functions, which runs $249 in labor.