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Thread: Ant in viewfinder, dirt on sensor.

  1. #1

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    Ant in viewfinder, dirt on sensor.

    Hello everyone, I am in trouble. Yes I am. Just got to another state here in Nigeria with my sis and brought my camera along for some serious experimenting. I switched lenses and voila! The worst moment of my cam.

    Firstly I saw a very tiny ant strolling around in the viewfinder. I took some shots and the shots came clean with no spot or the insect appearing on the image. Relief. Panicking, I took the lens off thinking maybe it's the lens but I couldn't locate anything. I fixed the lens back. I just tried later to take some other test shots at a high f/stop number and my greatest fears were confirmed. I located some spots on the image and the lower I set the fstop number the fader the spots get.

    It now seems the ant is even a smaller problem than the stained sensor. Coming across a skilled camera technician around here is highly difficult.

    This is the worst possible time to be stuck.

    What can I do please? Thank you.
    All the best!
    PS: event is for tomorrow, should I still go ahead and shoot?

  2. #2
    RustBeltRaw's Avatar
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    Lex

    Re: Ant in viewfinder, dirt on sensor.

    Do the stains appear on both your camera's LCD, and a computer monitor? Can you post a sample image? Generally when I see crud through the viewfinder, it's stuck to the bottom of the pentaprism. Fortunately that's much easier to clean than the sensor. The sensor is sealed off by the shutter most of the time, so it's unlikely that your six-legged friend made it that far. If you look into your camera's lens mount with nothing attached, the pentaprism is the glass bit above the mirror, straight below the hot shoe. It can be cleaned with a soft brush. Sensors must be cleaned by professional service techs, or by the camera's built-in cleaning mode, which is mainly effective against dust.

    Regardless of whether you can fix your camera, I say shoot. Experience with new situations and time spent handling your camera, regardless of the results, are very necessary.

  3. #3
    jeeperman's Avatar
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    Re: Ant in viewfinder, dirt on sensor.

    Go ahead and shoot! You would surely be sorry to mis the op. If the spots are on the sensor which I am guessing they are as they change with your F# they can easily be removed in post at a later date. I need to clean mine and have needed it for a month, I have continued to shoot. Though I am getting tired of chasing dust bunnies. Time for a cleaning. This will happen now and again.

    The ant....thats a new one on me. lol

  4. #4

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    Victor Nimitz

    Re: Ant in viewfinder, dirt on sensor.

    Definitely shoot !
    Perhaps you can use your mobile and/or your point & shoot.
    At least you get to record the event.

  5. #5

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    Re: Ant in viewfinder, dirt on sensor.

    Thanks everyone, unfortunately I can't post any of the images now as I have to access to a full computer. I will do that as soon as possible though.
    Lex, the ant does not appear in live view on the LCD but the black spot appears in the live view.

    (while on that, some tech insights needed. The event is an outdoor event during the day. People will be seated on tables with food and drinks and there will be live band performances with the center arranged as a dance floor for later. Which lens do u advise I use? My 18-55kit lens{no autofocus} or the perfectly working sigma 70-300? Flash?).
    Thanks.

  6. #6
    Stagecoach's Avatar
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    Re: Ant in viewfinder, dirt on sensor.

    Hi Ife. as others have said, if the spots are varying in size/clarity in the pictures taken at varying F stops it's dust on the sensor. If the pic is taken at F22 they will appear worse than at say F5.6

    My advice would be to leave as is for now as spots are generally easy to remove in post processing. If it's just dust on the sensor this can often be removed easily with a good blower brush, may take a few attempts but many of us do it. But whatever, leave until you have the right gear, a clean enviroment and have read up on the procedure.

    As for the ant, reminds me of a job I had to do a few weeks back when an entire colony with their eggs had made a nest between the plastic cover and LCD panel of my microwave so I could no longer read the timer. I won eventually and it still works.

    Grahame

  7. #7

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    Re: Ant in viewfinder, dirt on sensor.

    Sorry for the time it took to respond. Here are the images.
    Ant in viewfinder, dirt on sensor.
    Ant in viewfinder, dirt on sensor.

    My unwilling ant is still appearing in my viewfinder. Unfortunately, the pictures i took at the event were not stained by the dirt......i can't always be lucky because i still intend to do some practice with various aperture settings. Over to your know-how, gentlemen.

  8. #8

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    Re: Ant in viewfinder, dirt on sensor.

    Be thankful it is not ant droppings and the ant is merely in the viewfinder. Such small spots are likely to not be noticed in many photos and when seen should be very easy to edit away. I would consider them a small problem in a dangerous, to cameras, country such as yours

  9. #9

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    Re: Ant in viewfinder, dirt on sensor.

    Quote Originally Posted by jcuknz View Post
    Be thankful it is not ant droppings and the ant is merely in the viewfinder. Such small spots are likely to not be noticed in many photos and when seen should be very easy to edit away. I would consider them a small problem in a dangerous, to cameras, country such as yours
    Thanks jcuknz. Do you now mean i should leave it and cause no further damage(i.e. rely on PP to remove spots instead of tampering with the sensor.

    Out of curiosity, have you been to my country before or its camera-posing risks are from you reading online or nat geo...

  10. #10

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    Re: Ant in viewfinder, dirt on sensor.

    I gather cleaning sensors is something not to be treated lightly and am somewhat nervous having changed to M4/3 and lenses As yet I have to visit your country or even your continent but have been to places with similar climates which are not that friendly to cameras. Perhaps the problems are over stated as numerous other things

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