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dust & hair inside zoom

Discussion in 'Native Lenses' started by jloden, Jun 6, 2012.

  1. jloden

    jloden Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 15, 2012
    Hunterdon County, NJ
    Jay
    I did a search and couldn't find anything on the forum. Anyone have any suggestions on how to deal with a rather large speck of dust and what appears to be a small dog hair inside my 45-200mm zoom lens? :frown:

    And yes, I know some dust in a lens is normal, but this is large enough that the dust appears to be visible as a spot in the viewfinder and I see what I think is a silhouette of the hair when shooting against a light background. The dust spot and hair are both behind the front element and stuck to the second element in.

    I'm guessing at this point my choices are an expensive lens servicing, or just live with it? Anyone know where/how I can get the lens serviced and how much I should expect that to cost?

    I didn't pay all that much for the lens to begin with so the "live with it" option is sounding more attractive at the moment!
     
  2. crsnydertx

    crsnydertx Mu-43 Top Veteran

    995
    Dec 31, 2010
    Houston, TX
    Chuck
    Jay, I had a compact zoom camera (Canon G9) that inspirated a hair, which then became very noticeable on all pictures, especially ones with expanses of sky (hair appeared in upper left quadrant). I finally broke down and sent the camera back to Canon for service; I think it was about $125 to clean. That was more than the camera was worth, but I had grown attached to it...
     
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  3. DeeJayK

    DeeJayK Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Feb 8, 2011
    Pacific Northwest, USA
    Keith
    Dust inside the lens (particularly near the front element) may not have an appreciable impact on image quality. So unless this is showing up on your photos, it might be something you just live with. You state that you "think" you see some artifacts, but I'm not sure what that means. Maybe you could post some images of the artifacts?

    I would estimate the cost of professional cleaning would be in the $100-150 range which begins to approach the value of the lens (which you can probably find used for less than $200). I would suggest you go to the best camera shop in your area and ask them for recommendations of repair shops.

    I haven't read about anyone on this forum attempting to disassemble one of these native zooms themselves. I wouldn't recommend it unless you feel very comfortable handling tiny mechanical bits. If you do decide to tackle the job, please take LOTS of pictures of the process. So that you'll be able to reassemble the lens or at least have something to remember it by. :wink:
     
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  4. jloden

    jloden Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 15, 2012
    Hunterdon County, NJ
    Jay
    This prompted me to do more testing on various backgrounds and I can't find anything except in a small number of shots. It's only showing up shots from one one of the backgrounds I tried (wall), so maybe it's just something actually on the wall and I got lucky enough to coincidentally shoot that exact spot :confused:

    I'm not much of a pixel peeper so if even if it is showing up in the images if it's this hard to find/reproduce I'm not going to worry about it.

    Here's a shot of the actual dust spot + hair in the lens, seems pretty large to me but being new to working with interchangeable lenses maybe I was just worrying about it overmuch.

    P1080931.
     
  5. DeeJayK

    DeeJayK Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Feb 8, 2011
    Pacific Northwest, USA
    Keith
    That's the approach I would recommend. Looking at the pic, I wouldn't expect that bit of debris to cause you enough trouble to be worth the cost/effort of tearing apart the lens. Here's an article you might find interesting.
     
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  6. DeeJayK

    DeeJayK Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Feb 8, 2011
    Pacific Northwest, USA
    Keith
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  7. jloden

    jloden Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 15, 2012
    Hunterdon County, NJ
    Jay
    Wow, I'm pretty sure I've been waaaay too worried about keeping my lens front element clean :biggrin:
     
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  8. RobWatson

    RobWatson Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    If a scratch on the front element makes one more careful about composition then, for me, I'd expect a dramatic IMPOVEMENT in my photos when using a scratched/dirty lens!
     
  9. kapitano

    kapitano Mu-43 Regular

    29
    Apr 20, 2012
    Austria
    i think that dust and hair inside a lens are not a big issue!

    first, dust inside the lens usually doens't affect image quality. of course, dust on the rear element of the lens is more likely to be visible in a photograph than dust on the front element. but even then, you maybe won't even notice it. i think that if a spec of dust doesn't really pose a problem, a small dog hair doesn't either. you can always check your pictures and look if you can spot the dust and the hair in the photographs, but i wouldn't worry too much if you haven't spotted them already.

    second, you will always get dust in your lenses. the reason for this is that every lens blows air in and out of the lens while you're zooming or focusing. that's how lenses are build, so there is now way to avoid this. some lenses are more prone to dust then others, but i think that even sealed prime lenses with internal focusing can get a little bit dusty inside! maybe i should mention that dust doesn't always come from the outside. some dust specs are
    by the way, do not try to disassemble and clean the lens by yourself, because it is pretty sure that you would damage it. you can have it cleaned by the manufacturer, but this is not a cheap option and, after all, you will get new dust in your lens when you start using it again after the cleaning.
     
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  10. 250swb

    250swb Mu-43 Regular

    I can't see how the dust and hair are going to make any difference to the image, so perhaps you should consider the spot you see is sticky dust on the sensor. If you zoom in and out does the spot move at all? If so it is the lens, if it stays in the same place it is the sensor.

    An easy test is to stop both your 45-200 and another lens down all the way and take two photographs of a clear sky (watch out for birds, thay can look like dust!). Any dust sticking to the sensor will show up in the same place in each photo. It isn't unusual for a camera with a wave filter to get sticky dust or oil that can't be removed by the filter and a careful wet clean will cure it.

    Steve
     
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