Sensor cleaning

Discussion in 'Panasonic Cameras' started by zpierce, May 27, 2012.

  1. zpierce

    zpierce Super Moderator

    661
    Sep 26, 2010
    Minneapolis, MN
    Zach
    I noticed my first spot of dust on my GH2 sensor today. Should I just blow it off with a quick shot of compressed air or is that a bad idea? Other suggestions?

    Thanks,
    Zach
     
  2. Amin Sabet

    Amin Sabet Administrator

    Apr 10, 2009
    Boston, MA (USA)
    Don't use compressed air, which can spray liquid. Use a bulb air blower, like a baby nose suctioner which you can find at any drugstore, to blow air at the sensor.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  3. Streetshooter

    Streetshooter Administrator Emeritus

    Dec 15, 2009
    Phila, Pa USA
  4. zpierce

    zpierce Super Moderator

    661
    Sep 26, 2010
    Minneapolis, MN
    Zach
    Thanks! My intuition told me it was probably a bad idea.
     
  5. lenshoarder

    lenshoarder Mu-43 All-Pro

    Nov 7, 2010
    • Like Like x 2
  6. pcake

    pcake Mu-43 Regular

    187
    May 3, 2010
    use the rocket blower or another reputable brand - i've seen the cheap ones spray rubber particles.
     
  7. jyc860923

    jyc860923 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Feb 28, 2012
    Shenyang, China
    贾一川
    I' really love to read these but would you mind changing an easier-to-read font pls?
     
  8. jyc860923

    jyc860923 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Feb 28, 2012
    Shenyang, China
    贾一川
    shall be the font that most of us are familiar with, it's because when reading a most common font we recognise faster without having to read into each letter I guess. Anyway I would respect that you having your own style, I may need to face your font all day to get easy reading that:biggrin:
     
  9. Amin Sabet

    Amin Sabet Administrator

    Apr 10, 2009
    Boston, MA (USA)
    That's the ideal one, but I've used the baby nose suctioners for years without any problems :biggrin:.
     
  10. jnewell

    jnewell Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 23, 2011
    Boston, MA
    Changed the font on the original post, which required among other things un-quoting the text. I apologize to the OP - the post hard to read with the original font and the information is very useful reading. :thumbup:

    A digital camera sensor is an electronic component susceptible to immediate or latent damage from electrostatic discharge (ESD).

    Electrostatic discharge heavily depends on a phenomenon called triboelectrification (charging) wherein electrons are stripped from one surface by another surface that contacts it and then separates from it.

    When electrons are stripped, it polarizes the surface; meaning that it becomes "needy" or "hungry" for the electrons that it lost or "bloated" for that which it has in excess. The polarization is stated as a voltage charge; negative for electrons that it lacks or positive for those that has too much.

    When another surface that has an excess of electrons of the opposite polarity touches (or even comes close to it) the "needy" may immediately attract those electrons. Depending on the capacitance due the sheer surface area, a certain amount of electrical energy is associated with that transfer. This is termed as a "discharge." It is that transfer of energy that may cause the damage.

    Just because a surface is charged does NOT, necessarily, mean that it will discharge. A discharge does NOT, necessarily, mean that it will cause damage. Without measuring instruments, human senses are not capable of determining just what exact event will cause damage so it is best to prevent as many charging possibilities and protect from as may electrostatic discharge events.

    A digital camera sensor is one surface. A brush is another. Swiping brush bristles on the sensor may polarize the sensor. Placing a conductor such as the metal part of a lens may cause a discharge.

    From tests that I have performed personally using a Monroe Static Field Meter, a Prostat Contact Voltmeter, and a 3M ESD Event Detector, I have discovered that fine camel hair bristles have a much lower propensity for triboelectrification than the various nylon iterations of digital camera sensor cleaning brushes currently available. It is the only one that I use and is NOT marketed as a camera cleaning brush: it is a makeup brush.

    Note: Humidity levels a have a direct effect on triboelectrification. The lower the humidity, the higher the propensity. High humidity environments do not have as significant a problem with ESD.

    Unless spraying HUGE amounts of liquid that can cause other problems outside the scope of my discussion; small quantities of liquid from compressed air is not harmful to a digital camera sensor because that polymer prophylactic (shield) in front of the sensor is quite resilient.

    Speaking of that shield, it is a high-transmissive, low-reflective polymer. Polymers have high insulative (VERY non-conductive) properties that make them very highly susceptible to triboelectrification. While it protects the actual sensor surface from dust and moisture, it does little to protect it from ESD because a static charge can move through insulative surfaces.

    Many will state that they have not seen any problems from the use of a nylon cleaning brush to clean digital camera sensors. I remember many from my parents' generation stating that cigarette smoking did not seem to have any effect on them.

    I suppose the argument is moot since one can always buy another camera body.

    For me I use the make-up brush and Giottos Air Blower

     
    • Like Like x 1
  11. freedda

    freedda New to Mu-43

    Here is the link to the company which makes Sensor Swabs and Eclipse cleaning fluid. Cleaning Digital Sensors, Cleaning Digital Cameras - Photographic Solutions, Inc. - Digital & Photographic Cleaning Solutions - Photographic Solutions

    I have used these products successfully on my Canon DSLR, but haven't yet tried it on my Lumix G3. The swabs come in different sizes and the size info they have only lists the Lumix DMC-L10, and GH2 (both using size 2 swabs). I'm going to email them to confirm with swab size works on the M4/3 sensor.

    Copper Hill Images is listed as one of their dealers. Though not listed, B&H also sells their swaps and Eclipse cleaning fluid.



    Best, David.