Nikon D70 dust spot rant

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    I'm feeling the need to rant about the Nikon Service department. A couple of months ago, I encountered the dreaded dust spot issue on my Nikon D70. I decided to send the camera in to Nikon Service for a sensor cleaning because I wasn't comfortable with doing this myself. Fifty dollars (this is not covered under the warranty) and 6 weeks later I get the camera back. I take some test photos... and discover that the dust spot problem just got worse!!! Are there any other Nikon owners out there who have had a similar problem with Nikon Service??? And for those of you who are digital SLR users who change lenses from time to time, have you ever experienced the dust spot issue?

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    1. mdoeff 112 months ago | reply

      I found this thread on the Nikon D70 group:

      There are several good links with instructions for cleaning the CCD. I have to say, I was completely unaware of this issue before I purchased my D70. I guess this is the dirty little secret of digital SLR's.

    2. gabo_ 112 months ago | reply

      I have a Canon 20D and I have the same problem, went to Calumet store and bought a kit for doing it myself (kinda expensive: swabs and liquid for 60something), it's really easy and what those guys reccomended is doing it oneself, otherwise you will have to send it to service every two weeks... there will always be dust, but haven't read the thread yet...

      here's the link to my picture where you will find those infamous spots: lamps

    3. mochiland 112 months ago | reply

      You should get these two products made by Photographic Solutions

      1. Sensor Swabs (specially made to fit the size of your sensor)
      2. Eclipse Optic Cleaning Fluid

      Check out for a demo. At the bottom center of the web page you will see the words "Play Demo" above the Macromedia logo....mouse over the words and click on it for a demonstration.

      I must admit it's a bit scary to do but it's not difficult and the job get's done. Read your manual because some cameras have the feature to place your camera in Sensor Lock (the Rebel XT has this). As Gabo mentioned above you can get this at Calumet. Good luck!

    4. mdoeff 112 months ago | reply

      Thanks for the advice gabo and mochiland. I will try that out. Nikon is going to re-do the CCD cleaning for free but I am going to try the next one myself. Sounds like this dust spot issue is just the nature of the beast if you're swapping out lenses on a semi-regular basis.

    5. K S [deleted] 111 months ago | reply

      I have a d50. I just got mine back from the service dept today and it is worse than when I sent it in. Needless to say I am quite "disturbed." Mine has a white vertical line, about a pixel wide, running through images taken at high ISO. I've spent hours on the phone with tech support, only to have them tell me to send it back to them. I've got clients scheduled for shoots with no camera. I was looking into a D200, but now I'm considering a Canon...

    6. GRUMPEE1962 109 months ago | reply

      You dont really think it will be any better with a canon do you? Dust is dust! I decided against sending mine in because of the long turn over issue. I just edit in photoshop. How many people will see the dust on a printed photo? We are looking at these on a computer and sometimes we zoom in too far for our own good....

    7. Dr__Nick 107 months ago | reply

      I have had my camera for 18 months or so now, I have never touched the sensor. There is the occasional dust spot, but individual prints can be spotted. So far I have had no problems getting rid of the dust when it shows up in the pictures using a Giotto Rocket Blower. There may be other dust, but the major stuff the rocket blower gets.

    8. j l t 98 months ago | reply

      Yes, you can do it yourself, but if you are like me, I don't trust myself to do it.

      I found the following spots on an otherwise very clean used D70 I bought last week:

      and I'm taking it to California Precision Repair, here in Sacramento CA, for a cleaning; they charge $45 for a 1-hour sensor, mirror & general gut cleaning and testing, and they guarantee their work (plus they are an authorized Nikon service center, so none of the work they do would void any warranty).

    9. hegl79 96 months ago | reply

      I have a D70 as well, I've got the same problem. I guess I won't bother sending it in for service.

    10. slpinzon 95 months ago | reply

      I have a brand new D80 less than a month old with a large dust spot; bummer, sounds like an epidemic reading these comments.

    11. zoliky [deleted] 87 months ago | reply

      Don't waste your time with nikon service. This is the best sensor brush I ever seen:

      Try the brush... Is 99% safe, I use on Indium Tin Dioxid coated sensors, without problem!

    12. ronnyfaessler 85 months ago | reply

      hy, me for my self also have a d70 an had dustspots. but here in switzerland we have a very good "swiss nikon servicecenter". my cam is around 4 years old and they cleaned it free of charge within 15 minutes... thats what i call perfect service, i hope they keep this service free forever...

    13. Joel Kluger (Canis latrans) 85 months ago | reply

      --Wow...I am glad I bought an Olympus...I change lenses frequently...I have never had persistent dust problems...
      Found in a search. (?)

    14. Captainchaoz 81 months ago | reply

      Had dust spots on mine.You can clean yourself by locking mirror up and turning faceside down on tripod, then using blower bulb to carefully air blast sensor. This worked for me.

    15. Gillimcg 78 months ago | reply

      I got my D70 from jessops in Manchester uk (a gift from my husband ) , it came with a free dust spot! i returned it to jessops straight away they refused to deal with it ....they would not repair or replace ....infact they sent me over the road to local camera shop, who sent me back to demand they deal with it . Jessops sent me to Nikon, becasue it was a manufacture issue. Nikon wanted me to send it to the states at a significant cost! my neasest nikon service centre is 400 miles away in glasgow, who serviced and cleaned it for £25 that afternoon.
      but could not remove the offending spot....apparently (I was told) this is a very common complaint with Nikon cameras significantly more than others! Since Glasgow is so far away and the technicians are only there in the week , taking it to be cleaned is no longer an option for me. I have no ploblems whatsoever collecting debris on a regular basis ....even when the lens has not been changed!!! is a nightmare! I will change my camera at some point in the future , I will not return to Nikon! but in the mean time , this discussion has been invaluable. I would like to know ronnyfaessler , where the service centre is in switzerland please?, since work takes us there quite often and the camera usually goes with me. Thanks to all for the advice and good luck , gillix

    16. jmvanelk 71 months ago | reply

      Like captainchaoz said; you can do it yourself! I just did it on my 2ndhand D70. It's clean now. Instructions are in the manual...

    17. DrKimboJones 48 months ago | reply

      I gave my D70 away for cleaning to Nikon in Düsseldorf (Germany) a few years ago and it came back with a perfect clean sensor (maybe they just put in a new one ;) ). Right now it's pretty dirty again and I'll give it to a service partner here in Ireland. We'll see how the results are.

    18. Midget Photographer 31 months ago | reply

      I had a very nice camera store employee just do my D700 sensor out of courtesy at no charge. Try to find those guys and save the 50 bucks

    19. Stoic Meditation 19 months ago | reply

      It's hard to eliminate. I just live with it. It is rarely noticible if the aperture is 8 or less (perhaps why bridge cameras rarely allow apertures smaller than F/8). It is the bright sky shots where it becomes apparent. Unfortunately the image above has no useful EXIF data to indicate what aperture was used.

    20. _lennyk_ 3 months ago | reply

      Dust spots will inevitably come back just post process it using Adobe Photoshop's spot healing brush, as good as gone in a couple of seconds.

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