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CLOSED Oil droplets on my lowpass filter

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Nicolas Lannuzel says:

Hello,

My D7K is two weeks old.

Recently I spotted weird stains on the pictures. They are like bright disks surrounded by a darker ring. So not like the usual dust spots, which would not worry me.

On the low pass filter, I saw many small liquid droplets, maybe oil from the shutter, or other mechanical parts.

The next day I sent the camera to Nikon service center, and they cleaned the sensor for free (that was 2 days ago)

But today again, after taking about 60 photos, there are new droplets on the filter, clearly visible on this test shot at f/22:
DSC_1072.JPG.jpg

Anybody with a similar experience?
7:07AM, 12 January 2011 PDT (permalink)

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scubajunkie says:

Why do you think it is oil? There shouldn't be any oil in the camera. It does seem a bit large to be a hot pixel, though.
40 months ago (permalink)

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Wells Photos is a group administrator Wells Photos says:

I'm wondering the same thing: What leads you to believe it's oil?

Setting aside for now the idea that it is a fault and came from within the camera, can you think of any idea how foreign material might have gotten inside the camera? Did you leave the camera body without a lens and body cap for a while? Did you put a really old, dusty lens on it? Did you have it outside in really cold weather, then bring it in a warm humid place?

Anyway, have you tried a bulb blower (not compressed air!) on the filter being very careful not to touch anything in there with anything other than air?
40 months ago (permalink)

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nicbet says:

A bunch of users of the Pentax K-5 I believe had this very problem. Have a look at their user forum on dpreview - maybe they have a bit more insight.
40 months ago (permalink)

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jurodaDigital says:

might be lubricant from the mirror assembly?
40 months ago (permalink)

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Nicolas Lannuzel says:

|nb|: after searching online, I found few occurences of such a problem on Canon and Nikon.

I keep all my lens in a dry box, and I don't remember washing my D7000 under tap water. I never noticed this problem before on my 4 years old D80 and D40.

The droplets doesn't dry, so it can only be lubricant from the mirror or shutter mechanism. I can see spots in the first pictures taken at small apertures, the next day I bought the camera, after 100 or 200 clicks.

Let's see what Nikon will reply, I just emailed them.
40 months ago (permalink)

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partsal says:

My Nikon D3 throws grease if I roll the shutter speed up over approximately 1/3000~ 1/4000. Then it's carefully wet clean with the appropriate swabs & fluid. Don't know exactly where it is coming from, I just deal with it! The camera is too fantastic to bitch at.... I "assume" it's from the shutter assembly.... Others have had the issue also. There is a lot going on in there when you push the button.
40 months ago (permalink)

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pijpers662 says:

Hi nlann

I am experiencing exactly the same problem. During a shoot I suddenly had a spray of droplets on my sensor, including the white spots with dark ring and dark spots with a lighter ring around it. They were very stuck and couldn't be blown off, so for sure it was't dust. I took it back to the shop where I bought it and they cleaned the sensor. Now, one week later, I have again similar spots. Not as many as the first time, but still equally sticky. I also suspect it to be lubricant from the mirror mechanism. Did you receive any news from Nikon in the meantime?
39 months ago (permalink)

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Nicolas Lannuzel says:

I'm tavelling now so I couldnt service my camera yet.. I will let you know
39 months ago (permalink)

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SLRist is a group moderator SLRist says:

My D700 came with oil spray on the sensor. It's never affected any of my images, so I don't worry about it. You have to really play with the contrast settings to even see it. Every camera with a moving mirror will get this. If your camera is under warranty, Nikon will most likely humour you by offering to clean it.
39 months ago (permalink)

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nicbet says:

FYI: support.pentaximaging.com/node/1214

"Thursday, 27 January 2011 19:42 GMT
Pentax is offering a free service to users of K-5 DSLRs that have been affected by the widely reported 'stained image sensor' issue. The company believes the problem occurred during the manufacturing process of the first batch of K-5's and cannot be resolved by ordinary sensor cleaning methods. Affected camera owners can contact the company's customer service center to send their cameras for the repair. "
39 months ago (permalink)

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E. Olson says:

I had this exact same problem a few weeks ago. And since new spots were added to the initial ones over time, I figured there's not much use in shipping the camera to Nikon for cleaning. Soooo, I went the scarier route of learning to clean my sensor myself using the Copper Hill sensor swipe method. It took me a few tries to get decent at doing it, but the end result was a crystal clear sensor. No new drops in the past week since doing so.

Also, it is most likely lubricant from the mirror (as someone else mentioned). From what I've read, they're using lighter weight oils these days, and therefore they are spattered more easily. However, I'm guessing that the problem will lessen after the initial "break-in" period. As I said, no new spots in the past week.
39 months ago (permalink)

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Gilles Thibault says:

I've been having the same problem with the dark spots. I have to wet-clean the sensor every 1-2 weeks as the spots won't blow or brush off. I don't think it's anything I'm doing wrong as I also have an original D70 that I've never cleaned and it still doesn't have any dust on it.

Was there a reply from Nikon?
39 months ago (permalink)

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dtchiu says:

where is the low pass filter located on D7K, opposite of the shutter mirror? what are those black felt material located around the sides of shutter opening?
38 months ago (permalink)

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Photonuto says:

I have been following this topic for the last few weeks and since there has been no replies recently I decided to mention my recent problem with the oil droplet issue.

I first notice two of these droplets on my family trip to Montoray Bay California about two weeks after I purchased the camera. I have had several Nikon cameras in the past and the only time I had any questionable dust particle on my camera sensor was one particle on my D300 two years ago and that was because I didn't know that the Auto sensor cleaning with that camera at default setting was off! Once I tuned sensor cleaning on the dust particle was gone.

After noticing the two unusual halos on my sensor I took my camera to Samy's camera in Costa Mesa and they cleaned my camera sensor. About two weeks after I had Samy's perform the cleaning I noticed two new droplets in the same general area on my sensor. Being suspicious of my finding I searched different forum groups for answer and to my horror found this topic. I rechecked my sensor by taking a picture of clear blue sky at f22 and my lens on manual focus mode and noticed five new halos and at least nine dust (no halo) particles.

At this point I took my D7000 camera to Nikon center at El Segundo California and explained my reason that this was most likely an internal, mirror shutter assembly, camera issue. I also mentioned the fact that I am always careful to not allow dust get in my camera when I perform a lens exchange.

The lady at the counter immediately dispute my claim and reminded me that sensor cleaning is not covered by the warranty. I told her that I have no problem with paying for the service as long as the technician checks for error or defect that might exist inside my camera.

After a week I went back to pick up my camera and when I asked them what service they had performed on it the man at a counter told me that they have cleaned the sensor at no cost. I asked if their technician has checked the internal camera parts to see the cause of these droplets. He told me they had checked everything and there is nothing wrong with my D7000!

This is the only problem I have had with this camera or any other Nikon cameras I have or use to have in the past (D300, D700, D90 and this camera). I guess I have to be proficient at sensor cleaning as it appears that I will have to clean the sensor at least once a month.
38 months ago (permalink)

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soundlogic says:

This is really NO GOOD!
38 months ago (permalink)

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Wally_Hunt says:

I have recently found oil on my low pass filter as well. But, I am also not the most careful when switching lenses. I personally thought with my typical usage that my sensor became dirty fairly quickly.
38 months ago (permalink)

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green_pea says:

i just took 600+ motorsport shots and found numerous oil spots on every picture. I was running around f/22 most of the day. will have to take her to Nikon for a service. Never had this issue with my D40X
38 months ago (permalink)

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blackbird34608 says:

My D7000 came with stuff on the sensor that would not blow off and looks exactly as you describe, almost like a donut. You can see the spray on the sensor when you remove the lens and look. I sent it to Nikon, and they cleaned it for free. Now, a couple weeks later I am having the same problem. I never had any problems with my D80.
38 months ago (permalink)

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Rey_Pettis says:

I have had this problem also. I did not know what it was. I had it cleaned at a local service center for about $70 buck. I have not taken any pictures recently. Guess I better check it. Never had this issue with my D90 or D80.
38 months ago (permalink)

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Dellboy123 says:

Hi Nlann,
I have the exact same problem. So far Nikon have had my camera back 2 times and I have just received it back, and guess what, yep the oil droplets are there again. I have demanded that Nikon replace may camera under warranty because it is not fit for purpose but they say that if they concider that it can be repaired then they will not replace. I have to post it back to them again to make the desision. It is so frustrating, I bought this camera 4 months ago and Nikon have had it in for repair for 2 months of those. I don't think that I will ever have full confidence in the camera now.
38 months ago (permalink)

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Yiannis Karagiannis says:

www.flickr.com/photos/ioannikp/5393194084/

i have tha same. i send in nikon service clean the sensor but after 2 weeks i have one little stain again....
37 months ago (permalink)

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reelindskov says:

If Nikon is cleaning the sensors for free the must have recognized the issue....and hopefully doing something about it? Anyone hear back from Nikon?
37 months ago (permalink)

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Dellboy123 says:

Hi Guys,
I have just received my camera back from Nikon for the 3rd time. They have actually replaced the whole of the insides because of my reoccuring 'oil' problem. So far it seems to be ok. I will let you know if it's not.
ATB
37 months ago (permalink)

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Ron_BD says:

Hi folks...
My D7000 is 3 months old, had to clean the sensor three times so far! Spots on the right side that dont go away with shake... and reappearing after cleaning... Nikon telling me that its dust & not under warranty... if anyone can suggest how to make them convince that it's not a dust issue, I would be grateful... Thanks, Ron
37 months ago (permalink)

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Ron_BD says:

Guys... just did a test... there were drops on my sensor, dark spots surrounded by light rings... cleaned the sensor with swab... the single mode shot came ok, no spot. Then shifted the mode to continuous, and fired at the sky... @ f/22, the first few shots came good, & then a spot appears in the middle, followed by another light spot... the second spot got prominent later... !!! What a disappointment!!! :(
37 months ago (permalink)

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Mightyhorse says:

I had been using my D300 for some time and never noticed any sensor dust. Then out of curiosity and boredom I shot a blank wall at f/22 and viewed at 100%. I was shocked how much dust I had. These spots weren't the least bit visible at normal apertures.

On the rare occasions it would show up on a real life pic I would clone it out. Eventually I did wet clean it, again out of boredom and curiosity. It was spotless at f/22 for a short period but eventually it picked up more dust.

Ultimately, since it was rarely visible in any pic worth taking, and even then very easy to clone out, I saved myself loads of aggravation by deciding to ignore and/or clone out the problem.
37 months ago (permalink)

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B Zhou says:

Last week, I noticed there were a few spots on pictures taken with my D7000. These were mostly noticeable on the sky area with aperture F/8 and above. I first tried to blow it off but was not successful. So I spent some amount to have it cleaned by a camera shop offering DSLR sensor cleaning service.

Been extremely careful after I got my D7000 back, only put on one lens and never changed lens. To my disappointment, there are a few new spots again after yesterday's shooting. I can see the spot(s) even with small picture size.

Examining one of the spots in detail, it's concentrate circles, some circle lighter, some a little darker. Because it could not be blown off, I strongly suspect it's oil droplet.

I've had a D200 for years, and two other interchangeable lens cameras. None is that easy to get dust. On the D200 when I did get some dust once, it's easily blown off.

I'm going to contact Nikon service some time next week.
37 months ago (permalink)

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Ron_BD says:

@ bzhou... any luck?
Thanks
Ron
37 months ago (permalink)

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Ronmio says:

With threads about potential design manufacturing problems like this, it might help if those having problems included some identifying information about their camera (or lens or whatever).

My D7000 was purchased on 2/22/11 and has a serial number of 3086881. I haven't noticed any oil spots on mine but then I only have 800 shots on it.

Assuming Nikon assigns S/N's sequentially, we might be able to see if there's a trend (e.g., newer cameras don't exhibit the problem and maybe it has been, or can be, fixed).
37 months ago (permalink)

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runben10 says:

I bought my D7000 1 month ago, and recently discovered a lot of dark spots on every picture. I compared the first picture taken the same day as I bought the camera with the last pictures. There was already some light spots on the first pictures, but there has been an increase in amount of spots in the last pictures I took, as well as they have become darker. I have only taken about 200 pictures.
Had never such a problem with my D90

I went to my dealer and he concluded that it was not dust and probably could be oil spots. Had to send it to Nikon Service center and it will take 1 month before I get it back. I am worried that the problem will come back when I read the experience from other users here
37 months ago (permalink)

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robynmichelle79 says:

I have run into the same problem twice now. First time occurred 4/3/11, brought it into the local Nikon authorized warranty repair shop, who did a sensor cleaning and brushed it off as dust spots, despite me explaining that it happened with no switching of lens and produced halo effects, NOT dust spots.

Been trying to duplicate the effort and sadly succeeded today (4/22/11). Took place with aperture of f/8. Called Nikon Product repair and explained the situation, with pictures sent for proof. Now sending it to Melville, NY tomorrow and was promised rush priority to get this fixed since I need my camera body for a photography class AND my trip (the reason I bought the camera as an upgrade). I will keep you all posted.

www.flickr.com/photos/robynalman/sets/72157626570186156/
36 months ago (permalink)

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Elvio Gusmão Santos says:

Hi folks,
due to the oil droplets, I am leaving the club. i have seen reports here on D7000 foruns that even after being cleaned, the oil spots appeared again. The D7000 is a terrific camera. Great and sharp images, but I sold it back to my dealer and bought a D300S, also a great camera. In the future, if I get some money from the jobs I expect to do, I may buy another D7K. It was a pity, cause the images were really good.
36 months ago (permalink)

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Rory Prior says:

Glad to see it's not just my D7000 with this problem. I bought mine in November last year so it's one of the early batch, but it seems like even cameras bought by people more recently have the issue. I've twice sent the camera back to Nikon for servicing, but each time all they do is 'check and clean the sensor unit'. Of course that doesn't solve the problem and the oil spots reappear in short order. I'm going to try and call them next week and demand they replace the faulty parts. It seems totally unacceptable to have this kind of a problem in a £1000 camera. I've found the LensPen SensorKlear kit is effective at removing the oil spots by the way, which is fine as a quick fix but not a long term solution.
36 months ago (permalink)

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B Zhou says:

Just give an update, I first asked Nikon support question about this problem. They asked me to attach pictures so I did that. In return, Nikon service asked me to just send my D7000 in. When they received the camera, they basically say that it's "dust or debris" and sensor cleaning is not covered by warranty and they need to charge for this cleaning.
I'm very unhappy about this whole thing.
Any potential D7000 buyers should be aware of this potential problem.
36 months ago (permalink)

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Bill-S2001 says:

Hmm, quite a different response than from the one from Pentax up above for similar issues.

I have these spots, a wet sensor cleaning helped a bit (I didn't push that too far). Then I did the cleaning again, and the spots all went away but for one in a very obscure area. So I figured I could get that one spot - so cleaned again (wet sensor swabs) and a whole bunch more came back :D Will have to repeat when I get some more swabs, and do in a really clean area.

So maybe Nikon is correct in that some of these cases are just dust bunnies and not oil droplets, as I swear my own look exactly like what is being described here, but they move (some with just a good blow on the giottos).

Edit: My spots do not look like the one presented at the top of this thread by the OP, they are just dark, so I will emphasise that I did not/do not have the same issue.
Originally posted 36 months ago. (permalink)
Bill-S2001 edited this topic 36 months ago.

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gcD600 says:

My 6 month old D7000 has only 2357 shutter actuations.
I found oil on the back of my lens glass as well as on the sensor.
The oil spots on the sensor is on the right side (looking at the sensor & on the pictures).
I used a lenspen to clean both - no problems - yet.
This is possibly mirror or shutter curtain lubricant.
I'm glad to see it's not just me.
36 months ago (permalink)

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robynmichelle79 says:

@bzhou - I would fight with them on this.... we argued that my two oil spot occurrences aren't dust spots and that the first time brought to a local authorized Nikon repair center just cleaned the sensor and obviously that didn't work. I sent a copy of that receipt and shipped it along with my camera to prove that the sensor cleaning is not enough and this problem is under warranty. After some convincing, my repair is under warranty and is currently being fixed. I will report back once I'm told what was actually fixed.
36 months ago (permalink)

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rpps says:

I just e-mailed Nikon Australia after they offered to clean my sensor under warranty. But they said it was dust when they saw my photo I sent them I just told them it was oil marks and posted a link to this Forum and another on DP Review so hopefully he will read up on the problem and get back to me.
I ordered a cleaning kit from Copperhills but will hang off now with doing the cleaning myself, especially if the marks re-appear after a sensor clean.
36 months ago (permalink)

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robynmichelle79 says:

continuing saga... i received my camera back on Monday (May 2) and the invoice stated that all was done is a cleaning of sensor and a general check. I emailed asking specifically what was done. And guess what - during my photography class today, just two days after getting my camera back from Nikon, the spots appeared again with apertures of f/11-f/16!!! I sent photo examples and complained to the service rep hat the problem wasn't fixed despite EVERYTHING I explained. I am shipping it back tomorrow morning, covered by Nikon and am requesting a replacement body.
36 months ago (permalink)

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rpps says:

Gee sorry to hear the news as mine went back to Nikon this week (at their expense) I will be waiting anxiously. When I was talking to the Service Manager he said it would more likely be moister or condensation.
Quote>From Nikon

Ross,

As I have previously stated, let me know where your camera can be picked up from and I will organise a courier so we can clean the sensor.Until we see the camera of course we are unable to state what the problem is. I have seen dust spots that are perfectly round, especially if they have a moisture component to them or of condensation has formed on the sensor.
My e-mail is rosspsmith@hotmail.com please let me know the outcome of your problem when fixed and I will let you know mine
Originally posted 36 months ago. (permalink)
rpps edited this topic 36 months ago.

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Elvio Gusmão Santos says:

I gave my D7000 back to my dealer/seller. He accepted it back and I bought a D300S. As I have bought all my cameras with the same dealer ( I live in Brasil), to honor my "fidelity", he accepted to receive it back.
36 months ago (permalink)

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roshith_k says:

I regret having bought a D7K (too soon perhaps). Even I have the same oil drops on sensor issue, and the problem is more than just dirty sensor. This is the 3rd time within months I am seeing the same issue. I read from somewhere that this is not an issue with the later cameras.
If anyone has got it officially replaced from Nikon, please lemme know..
36 months ago (permalink)

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robynmichelle79 says:

I'm working on getting it replaced. I have had this occurrence 4 times within the last 6 weeks. No one in Nikon is taking responsibility for this issue, and I've have it "repaired" three times, only to come back and find new spots the first time I use it. Both me and my husband have complained that I requested a replacement the last time I sent it back to them, and that I needed it for my trip and class. I do not trust any more "repairs" on this and only want a replacement. Will keep you guys posted.
36 months ago (permalink)

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robynmichelle79 says:

Update: Thanks to repeated phone calls, especially one from my husband, I am finally getting a replacement D7000 body. I shipped out my oily camera today and should be getting the new one tomorrow. Let us hope that this new one doesn't encounter the same problem.
36 months ago (permalink)

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roshith_k says:

Thanks for the update, michelle. Looks like the fighting surely helped. Wish I have similar luck too.. They shouldn't be putting users through so much trouble with a "high end" camera.
36 months ago (permalink)

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LetterKilled says:

do you think "newer" D7k's are better now? how can i test mine? the first post was a picture of a gray picture. how can i do that? so far i havent noticed anything like that. i just bought mine about a week ago.
36 months ago (permalink)

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Ronmio says:

It would be helpful if you include serial numbers in your posts when discussing issues that may be related to version/runs.
36 months ago (permalink)

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robynmichelle79 says:

Not everyone wants to post serial numbers for security. I will post mine, only because I have FINALLY succeeded in a replacement body. Mine was 3057437.
35 months ago (permalink)

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Edu Silva 2EV says:

I'm having the same problem too. I tweaked the levels and constrast in the image to emphasize the problem. I got all this mess after just about 600 clicks.

www.flickr.com/photos/elesestaovoltando22/5783778750/in/p...

I'm just afraid if this oil can leave marks in the sensor if I take too long to send the camera for cleaning.

I would sugest to make a group called d7000 dirt sensor and post all those images in same place, so when we take our cameras to Nikon they can't say that it's just dust, because the most part of the drops is always in the right side of the image.
35 months ago (permalink)

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Silvio Tanaka says:

Please, post all your images on this group!

www.flickr.com/groups/d7000-oil-on-sensor/
35 months ago (permalink)

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imaginedhorizons says:

Thanks for the group Silvio. Just added my image. We have to shame Nikon into a general recall of D7000 cameras. The more evidence the better.

I bought from Amazon UK who have a 30 day replacement/refund policy; time enough to find the problem and send the camera back. I enclosed a note with my returned D7000, suggesting they send their stock back to Nikon rather than risk more returns. I hope they do. Since I don't have my D7000 any more I am happy to post the serial number, which is 6161064. Sounds more recent than some I have seen...not encouraging.

Maybe D7000 shop purchasers could quickly fire off 100 frames and then shoot a sheet a sheet of paper at high f number to check for oil droplets before handing over the cash. If you get a good one, fine; if not at least the shop assistants will know what the problem is too.
Originally posted 35 months ago. (permalink)
imaginedhorizons edited this topic 35 months ago.

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Rory Prior says:

An update from me - after contacting Nikon's online support they acknowledged there were oil droplets on the sensor after I uploaded some photos to them. They escalated my support request and told me the service department would be in touch. A week later I called them as they hadn't been, I was told they were very busy and that they would get to me as soon as they could. Another week later and I'd still heard nothing so I phoned again. This time I got a more helpful woman who, after expressing my frustration at getting this issue fixed, agreed to personally look into the problem and when I posted my camera back to Nikon (for the 3rd time) I addressed it specifically to her. I'll report back on whether they actually fix the problem this time. Getting very frustrated with the poor treatment from Nikon, they must know this is a common problem by now and know how to fix it.
35 months ago (permalink)

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CloudsCarsCameras.com says:

Hopefully you purchased from a local camera store, If so talk with the owner of the store and get their Nikon Rep contact information. I find that Nikon's Sales Reps have great contacts that can get this resolved for you.

Bill
35 months ago (permalink)

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robynmichelle79 says:

Sorry to hear this Rory... sounds like the "service help" I got over a 6 week period. Sadly, I don't think they know or are willing to admit that this is a problem. It took a forced conversation from my husband to make Nikon ship a replacement by the deadline needed, a replacement promised the 3rd time I sent it in for repair and didn't receive. Keep fighting and when you do get your camera back, both test it and try calling Nikon to have them tell you what was "fixed."
35 months ago (permalink)

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Rory Prior says:

@sshaPhotos.com, I bought it online, the only local camera store didn't have any in stock for a long time. I have the phone number for the UK service department and the name of at least one of the reps, I will keep on at them if they don't fix it this time around.

@robynmichelle79, I've read a few stories online of people having trouble with Nikon and having to repeatedly send their camera back. I will keep fighting them until they can deliver me a properly working D7000.
35 months ago (permalink)

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ThompsonPhotoNI says:

I have the same thing on my sensor. But I suspect its more likely to be dust. Tried the rocket blower and it didnt shift it either. Only visible from about f22 or so so Im not bothered by it at the minute. ahh internet forums is a pixel peepers worst nightmare
35 months ago (permalink)

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robynmichelle79 says:

@Rory - that's all you can do, is stay on top of them and demand your camera to either be fixed or replaced. Painful process, but as long as you don't give up, I'm sure you will come to a favorable solution. I did, and my replacement body is awesome.
35 months ago (permalink)

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ThompsonPhotoNI says:

Unreal. Just sent Nikon a picture of what I thought was dust. However after trying to clean it off there was no budging it. They want to inspect the unit. Im hoping its nothing as I have spent a clean fortune switching over to nikon......
35 months ago (permalink)

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Rory Prior says:

@ThompsonPhotoNI Good for you if it doesn't spoil your photos but don't pretend it's not a serious problem for others. Check the image I posted in my photo stream. What dust have you ever seen that causes large bright dots like that? www.flickr.com/photos/rory-p/5824399185/in/photostream

Worse still is that they just keep on accumulating unless you physically wipe them off the sensor. Not something you want to be doing every 20 to 30 photos you shoot! They're also really visible at normal apertures too (F6-F11) although obviously look most clearly defined at F22.
35 months ago (permalink)

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b-l-o-c-h-y says:

Must report the same problem, dots visible on pictures from f9.. a testing shoot on the blue sky with f22 shows small black dots, most of them on the right side of the frame.. I have about 4000 clicks on my D7000. I will definetely contact Nikon service centre for help.
35 months ago (permalink)

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imaginedhorizons says:

I've been thinking. If this goes on, or even escalates, there are going to be a load of refurbed D7000s out there to buy and, quite conceivably, the refurbs will be a better bet, oil-wise, than a new ones. If anyone buys 6161064, I promise I really looked after it for the 4 weeks I had it!
35 months ago (permalink)

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mjpi says:

I will join the chorus here. I have sent mine back to Nikon in early May. Was returned May 22. And here I am again with spots. Barely used since it was returned. I opened a second support ticket with Nikon this morning - and no response. Hoping to just cut to the chase and get them to replace the unit. Obviously reading this thread it is a recurring problem. D50 i have has been through everything and no problems. This has been nothing but a poor investment. $1200 for a camera you ship back 2 times in 30 days.
35 months ago (permalink)

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syza aljufri says:

Guess most of our D7000 been 'infected' with this kind of problem. shoot @ f22, and u can noticed it. Mine also spotted in the lower right corner but if u mirror up it can be seen at the upper right corner.It was kind of dark color oil. If not mistaken i heard that it was due to over lubrication..... Have to confirm.
35 months ago (permalink)

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mjpi says:

my ticket has been open for 48 hours now and no response from Nikon. I actually called the other night to follow-up. As soon as the person read the ticket she put me on hold. Then came back on said it is being "reviewed by upper management" and would say nothing - but did kindly let me vent. So now they ignore tickets and they take no action when called.
35 months ago (permalink)

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Royally Morphed Pythons says:

didn't realise how long this thread was until i opened it lol.

I've not had any of these problems. I've had some dust, like everyone with a DSLR will get over any period of time, but i sensor swabbed and hey presto.. the dust is gone.
35 months ago (permalink)

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Kathrin & Stefan says:

We bought a D7000 in April this year and never took off the single lens we have. The first photo was fine, photo 39 already shows the first spot (right side), and from then on it got worse and worse. When we turned the camera in yesterday, they rang us back and told us the residue on the sensor was due to somebody unsuccessfully attempting to clean the sensor. Yeah Right. So we clean our sensor after only 39 photos, and every time we add another droplet and keep the others in place? How probable is that?
Thanks for setting up this thread and the group (have added our series) so we know we're not along with this.
34 months ago (permalink)

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aidenm2010 says:

I believe the camera will be discontinued this year. Any bets?
34 months ago (permalink)

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Mightyhorse says:

This calendar year? Absolutely, I'm good for up to $5,000 bet on that, I could do less too, flickrmail me if you're serious and I'll see about arranging an escrow account.
34 months ago (permalink)

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Cassandra Leone says:

Hehehe Mightyhorse, you've a mighty sense of humor!

I don't see this camera being discontinued anytime soon. Like all electronics it becomes outdated within the first few weeks/months, but no company in their right mind, who is smart enough to fix a simple problem, would straight up discontinue a product unless there was a serious issue with it.

I've been lucky enough to avoid the oil spots, and I've had this camera since the beginning of June 2011.
34 months ago (permalink)

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Kathrin & Stefan says:

Update: After providing photos (so guys, keep originals as proof) and talking directly to technical staff, the technician told us that he would contact Nikon and ask if there was such an issue. And, tada, supposedly there is and now he is waiting for further instructions how to approach the repair.
34 months ago (permalink)

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mjpi says:

My D7000 was returned yesterday from it's second cleaning since May 22. 300 frames later I have the spots again. So tomorrow will be my third return to Nikon since May 22.

I asked for a replacement unit - and they said they can't guarantee it. I have to ship it back and they will decide. Extremely frustrated. At this point I just want a camera that does not need cleaned every 300 frames or my money back.
34 months ago (permalink)

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creditcard says:

one can see the droplets on my d7000 sensor every two or three days after being cleaned. I have went to the nikon service center for about eight times. the sensor is just cleaned each time. they told me that the spots are just dust. I sent my d7000 back to the service center for checking yesterday. I hope they can replace the camera. the sensor cleaning makes no sense. I just cleaned my olympus e420 sensor once with a blower for past two and a half years.
Originally posted 34 months ago. (permalink)
creditcard edited this topic 34 months ago.

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Rory Prior says:

Got my D7000 returned today after its 3rd trip back to Nikon. The service invoice lists the following has been done:

Clean shutter unit and aperture side plate
Clean and check Image Sensor unit.
Check, test and clean equipment

This is the first time the shutter unit and aperture side plate have been listed as being cleaned on the invoice, so I'm hoping they've fixed the problem properly this time by removing the excess oil (I mean how hard can this be?).
34 months ago (permalink)

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veesah says:

I have a D7000 from one of the early Canadian shipments - I saw spots on my photos w/ some minor haloing if i pump up the contrast (not sure if it's dust or oil). It's had 6000 actuations so far.

Using 1 sensor cleaning swab, I was able to clean it from 20 spots to 1. It was my first time cleaning and did turn out to be quite a simple process.

For an otherwise excellent camera, I think this is a manageable issue.
34 months ago (permalink)

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ARC4photo says:

I also have this problem and I've only had my camera for a week. =( I called Nikon and they asked me to send them pictures of the spots on my pictures. I don't know how long its gonna take for them to get back to me, but I don't know if I wanna deal with shipping my camera back and fourth to Nikon. I'll most likely just go return it and wait till sept to get a new D7000 or get a 300s.
34 months ago (permalink)

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Pam Wamboldt says:

Im having the same problem with my D7000. Dark spots on long exposures... and I always use the same lens so it's never off camera... it has to be oil from mirror and not dust. Im not overly happy with the 7000 purchase because of this as I was a canon gal and never had this challenge before, now I spend far too much time editing out dark spots on my landscape images. Even after I clean it they show up again quickly. :(
34 months ago (permalink)

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robynmichelle79 says:

For those experiencing this, just keep fighting. The camera is definitely worth it despite the annoyance of the spots. My replacement camera has been problem-free so far, and I am loving every minute of taking photos with it!
34 months ago (permalink)

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Kathrin & Stefan says:

Update 2: The technician has received instructions from Nikon how to fix the problem. It involves a new part that has to be shipped form Japan. So I'll have to work with my trusty old (oil free;-) ) D80 for some more days. At least I have the new lens.
34 months ago (permalink)

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Kathrin & Stefan says:

Maybe it's best to
1. Show them photos that clearly demonstrate buildup of spots over a series of photos.
2. Send them references to this discussion and the photos and the stories of us who have successfully "fought" that demon.
34 months ago (permalink)

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mjpi says:

I finally got Nikon to replace the unit. Shot the first 100 frames and the first spot has appeared. Looks like on the 15th frame. I can't win!
34 months ago (permalink)

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aidenm2010 says:

Camera is a lemon.And Nikon knew it. $1200 for a body that has so much- is very suspicious.
Ken Rockwell didn't finish his manual -suspicious.Never believe him,he is paid by Nikon.Camera will be discontinued soon and we will be left with all the crap.
Originally posted 34 months ago. (permalink)
aidenm2010 edited this topic 34 months ago.

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wlo22c says:

I have this same issue. I tested it out when I got home from work and sure enough, I have spots also.
33 months ago (permalink)

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Mightyhorse says:

Where are the real life example shots in this thread?

Aside from the OP shooting an all gray field, nobody has posted these spots yet.

I'm just wondering if this is something all the cameras have and nobody is noticing unless you zoom in 300%.
33 months ago (permalink)

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Sosomay says:

I saw these spots on one of the posters pics. Mind you, I have a D90 and wanted to donate it to a family member and was entertaining the idea of getting the D7k.
How wide spread is this oil droplets on the sensor? Is this effecting the early batch of bodies? if this is a wide spread problem then D3XXs here I come!
33 months ago (permalink)

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niXerKG says:

I have shot approximately 32194 photos since I first got my D7000 on October 15th, 2010 and I have just gotten the oil on the low pass.

Didn't notice it until I was looking at my macro shots at f/48.

Either way a simple Visible Dust sensor wipe should get rid of it and I think mine only happened because it's been so hot and humid for the whole week here in Chicago and I shoot every opportunity I get.
33 months ago (permalink)

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mjpi says:

 by mjpi


This is the original issue. But each time it is variations on this. No need to zoom to anything.

I had my original body returned to Nikon 3 times. They replaced it the third time. The replacement body was returned once and just got back today where they replaced a part. It is going back because it threw spots in the first 100 frames today. So that is 5 times back to Nikon.
33 months ago (permalink)

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MeKbUdA40 says:

I had oil, dust, or whatever appear on my sensor after over 10,000 shots but don't think I would have even noticed it if I had not went looking for it. I cleaned the sensor and as of 600 shots later I can't see any visible spots. I have decided not to worry about it unless it starts interfering with the quality of my photos.
33 months ago (permalink)

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mjpi says:

@mekbuda I guess you are luckier or more tolerate than me. Mine spots usually appear within 100frames after coming from Nikon cleaning/repair. My opinion is that it does affect the quality of my shots and it is actually quite time consuming to edit them out.
33 months ago (permalink)

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Kathrin & Stefan says:

Update: After 3 weeks of waiting, we have picked up the camera from repair. No costs as it was under warranty and I had provided photos of the gradual build-up (after a long telephone discussion with the technician who said that we had tempered with the sensor by trying to clean it ourselves - yeah right). According to the repair sheet, the whole mirror-drive-unit has been replaced. And not only the sensor, but also the "surroundings" were cleaned. Now the picture is fine again. let's see for how long...
33 months ago (permalink)

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Scotty E says:

someone needs to print this and mail to nikon
33 months ago (permalink)

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le.svano says:

I just cleaned my camera twice (!) today at my local store (thank God cleaning was included in the deal). The camera is one week old, serial no. 6xxxxxx and about 700 shots. The store confirmed that what they saw on the sensor was indeed oil (they weren't aware of this being a problem with the D7000, but had experience with it on other models). After the cleaning the pictures taken were clean (checked on the camera's display), but after I did a few shots at 1/8000 new spots appeared (visible when checking on the camera). They cleaned it again, and again confirmed that it was oil (and certainly not just dust at least).

I'm sort of expecting this to come back so I will have it sent to Nikon for a repair when it does. Consumer right's here in Norway gives them two attempts to get it sorted or I'll get my money back... shame though, otherwise it's a great camera.
Originally posted 33 months ago. (permalink)
le.svano edited this topic 33 months ago.

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Macluto says:

I'm having a similar issue with my D3s. I thought it was my lens. The lens was due for a service, upon completion the lens came back ok, it has some inside dust still which is frustrating. So I put the 24-70mm back on and the spots were still there...so I swapped lenses and put a 50mm portrait lens on and the marks are in the exact same place. But taking a shot with no lens attached the spots aren't there :/
When locking the mirror up to view the sensor, there are no visible marks/dust/spots on there at all...
33 months ago (permalink)

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picsbyperi says:

I have the problem and confirmed with Nikon. The issue starts in at around f/8 and higher is when i really start noticing it. Nikon advised me to send the camera in with an estimated 3 week turn around!!! That's not going to work to well considering my wife is expected to deliver in the next couple weeks, but i also have classes starting up after that and will need my camera. . .

I'm thinking of finding a local repair center to get a cleaning done....
33 months ago (permalink)

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Rasmus-Juul says:

I get these too. Already had it cleaned by Nikon once, but the droplets have returned.
33 months ago (permalink)

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TheOriginalSteve says:

I'm thinking of trading my D90 for a D7000 but think I'll hold off for a while longer! The D70, D80, D90 seems fine which suggests this oil problem affects cameras with the higher 150k rated shutters.
33 months ago (permalink)

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mjpi says:

I've had the camera back 4 times. Cleaned, Cleaned, Replaced with new body, and then part replaced. looks like issue has resurfaced. Just uploaded test shots to support, we'll see what they say.
33 months ago (permalink)

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Scotty E says:

i just wonder how someone could get it through nikons head that the 7k has an issue with oil.As for mine it is ok but sounds like it will have the problem sooner or later.
33 months ago (permalink)

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mjpi says:

Dust or something else??

Dust? or something else? by mjpi

33 months ago (permalink)

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usabin says:

I have the same issue with the camera. I thought I did something wrong when I've changed the lenses but now it seems clear. I had the sensor cleaned twice already. Last time was less then a week ago and now the spots had appeared again. I had D90 for more than 2 years and never had this issue.
33 months ago (permalink)

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AnitaTheresa says:

I've had my D7K for about 8 weeks and have taken a couple thousand shots (purchased from Amazon US). After reading this thread today, I tested the camera and was relieved that there does not appear to be a problem. Thanks to all of you for alerting the members of this group to the problem. I know now to check for this issue periodically.
33 months ago (permalink)

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